Maine Things Considered

4 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. Monday - Friday

Weekdays at 4 p.m. join host Nora Flaherty and hear Maine’s only daily statewide radio news program. Maine Public Radio's award-winning news staff brings you the latest news from across Maine and the region, as well as in-depth reports on the most important issues.

Maine.gov

A Superior Court judge has declined to weigh in on how a Washington County prison should be operated, after Gov. Paul LePage emptied the facility in February. 

David Webbert, an Augusta attorney representing laid-off workers at the Downeast Correctional Facility in Machiasport, filed the request for clarification with Superior Court Justice Michaela Murphy.

AP Photo

It was a chaotic week for those attempting to follow developments of Maine's ranked-choice voting law. And it's still unclear how all of this is going to shake out.

Political correspondent Steve Mistler joined Nora Flaherty on Maine Things Considered to get us up to date and tell us how we got here.

BDN

When a suspected case of child abuse or neglect in Maine is reported to the state, it is the state's job to decide whether to open an investigation. A year ago, the Maine Office of Child and Family Services started using a new tool to help caseworkers make these decisions. But some professionals who frequently report suspected abuse say they're worried that the state is no longer investigating all of the cases it should, leaving some children in unsafe situations.

sherryvsmith / AP Photo

President Trump's proclamation directing the deployment of the National Guard to the U.S.-Mexico border has prompted pushback from some members of Maine's congressional delegation. These representatives want to know more about how many troops would be called and for how long.

climateandsecurity.org

A retired Marine general and expert on national security is in Maine Thursday to discuss what he sees as one of the biggest threats to stability: climate change. General John Castellaw says there are currently 32 locations around the world where conflict, aggravated by climate change, is affecting U.S. interests, and he sees a few ways to restore order.

Castellaw spent 36 years in the Marines. He says his view of climate change as a national security threat was shaped over time, and that he's not alone. He says his peers in the military share his assessment.

A Superior Court judge has ruled that state election officials should continue implementing Maine's landmark ranked-choice voting law for the June primary elections. The ruling, by Kennebec Superior Court Judge Michaela Murphy, is a victory for supporters of the voting system, who have been battling with lawmakers in the courts and in the Legislature ever since voters approved ranked-choice nearly two years ago. But the legal battle is far from over.

thestoredsolar.com

The Maine Public Utilities Commission voted Wednesday to approve a $1.2 million taxpayer subsidy to an embattled biomass company operating two plants in West Enfield and Jonesboro.

Patty Wight / Maine Public

Maine Senator Susan Collins' says she's doubtful that Congress will take action anytime soon to stabilize the Affordable Care Act (ACA) marketplace. Her proposal to lower health insurance costs was not included in the omnibus spending bill passed last month, and Collins now says she’ll refocus her strategy.

Snowmobile Northern Maine Facebook

While people in Southern Maine are starting to think about mowing the lawn, a cold wintry spring season persists up in Aroostook County. A group of residents close to the Canadian border is taking advantage of those conditions this weekend in an effort to break a world record.

Anadolu Agency / Getty Images

Amid a national debate over gun violence, Maine lawmakers are being asked to grapple with a difficult question: If someone is deemed by a judge to be a danger to themselves and to others, should police be able to temporarily confiscate their guns?

Ed Damm

Building a vacation home on an artificial lake can have pitfalls, as water levels rise and fall within certain limits, at the whim of whoever owns the dam. Waterfront property owners in Ellsworth are hoping to take some control over their summer shoreline, as the owner of two dams on the union river seeks a renewal of its federal licenses.

Brian Jackson / AP Photo

State lawmakers are giving an initial thumbs down to Gov. Paul LePage's proposal to raise the bar for new wind energy projects in Maine.

The governor wants to limit streamlined permit reviews to wind projects only in eastern Aroostook County. And he wants to expand reviews of their visual impacts to anywhere within 70 miles of significant scenic resources.

Rep. Paul Stearns, a Guilford Republican, says he sees the scenic harm wind farms can do first hand.The porch of his camp on Piper Pond in Abbot is in the shadow of the Bingham wind plantation.

Maine Public

Maine Attorney General Janet Mills says that she has a solution to the funding stalemate between Gov. LePage and lawmakers that is blocking Medicaid expansion. At the State House Tuesday, Mills announced that Maine will receive millions in additional funds from a settlement with tobacco companies that could pay for expanding health care coverage, which voters approved last year.

A district court judge has granted a protection from abuse order against Seth Carey, a Rumford attorney who is running as a Republican candidate for district attorney in Androscoggin, Franklin and Oxford Counties.

The Lewiston Sun Journal reports that the victim believed she was in “immediate and present danger” from Carey, who she said sexually assaulted her in the home they shared.

Reached by telephone Monday, Carey said the allegations are “100 percent false.” He said the woman is a friend who was trying to get out of an abusive relationship and had nowhere else to go.

Jennifer Mitchell / Maine Public

We all know the association between Ben & Jerry’s ice cream and its home state of Vermont. The brand is known in all 50 states and 40 different countries. Now one Maine-based company is looking to become the Ben & Jerry's of gelato.

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