Bangor Daily News

LePage Vows To Push Through $950M Project To Send Quebec Hydropower Through Maine

Feb 17, 2018
Colin Perkel / AP - BDN

Massachusetts chose a $950 million project headed by Maine utility Central Maine Power to be its backup option for a massive clean energy procurement that appeared headed to New Hampshire before regulators there nixed it last week.

Maine Gov. Paul LePage’s energy czar said his boss would “push this right through” the rest of the permitting process handled by the Maine Department of Environmental Protection, but it could set off confrontations with environmentalists who have been cool to, but quiet on, the plan.

Montana Firm Eyes $22 Million Maine Expansion For High-tech Timber

Feb 16, 2018
Bangor Daily News

The nation’s first manufacturer of cross-laminated timber plans to set up shop in Maine, with a goal of creating 100 jobs at a $22 million mill, officials said Friday.

House GOP Stands With LePage To Thwart Bid To Reopen Down East Prison

Feb 15, 2018
Bill Trotter / Bangor Daily News

A largely united House Republican caucus Thursday stymied a legislative effort to reopen the Downeast Correctional Facility, which Gov. Paul LePage abruptly closed last week.

The entire Democratic caucus supported the emergency bill, but all but seven Republicans voted no, dooming its chances of garnering the two-thirds support it needs to take effect immediately or survive a likely LePage veto.

Bangor Day Care Staff Says Cookies Delivered By Parent Made Them High

Feb 15, 2018
Alex Acquisto / Bangor Daily News

Staff at a Bangor day care said they felt high on Wednesday after eating a batch of suspected marijuana-laced cookies dropped off by a parent, according to police.

None of the children at Watch Me Shine day care at 28 Gilman Plaza ate the cookies, which are being tested to see “whether they have been tainted with anything at all, to include marijuana,” said to Bangor Sgt. Wade Betters.

Bangor Mall Seeks Big Tax Break As Temporary Owners Take Over

Feb 14, 2018
Lori Vilagra / Bangor Daily News

The Bangor Mall is asking the city for a steep property tax break, citing sales declines, mall vacancies and increased occupancy costs.

At the same time, Simon Property Group of Indianapolis has turned over ownership of the mall property, buildings and leases to the trustees of a loan that Simon took against the mall and defaulted on last Oct. 1. Representatives for the trustees are now expected to prepare the mall for sale, according to one expert.

Maine’s Once Forgotten Original State Flag Is Making A Comeback

Feb 13, 2018
Troy R. Bennett / Bangor Daily News

PORTLAND, Maine — In 1901, Maine adopted its first official state flag. It featured a white pine tree and a blue north star set on a plain, buff background. The banner was unique, unlike any other flag in the world. Seven years later, the legislature replaced it with a generic “seal on a blue bedsheet” design easily mistaken for dozens other state flags.

That 1909 flag is still flying atop the State House dome in Augusta, 108 years later. The original, more distinctive, design flapped off into history. It was never used again. The Maine State Museum doesn’t even have one.

Ex-BIW Union Treasurer Says He Stole $281,000 To Feed Addiction

Feb 12, 2018
Linda Coan O'Kresik / Bangor Daily News

PORTLAND, Maine — A former union official at Bath Iron Works was sentenced Monday in federal court to 18 months in prison and $280,865 in restitution after pleading guilty to embezzling that amount from Local S6 of the Machinists Union, the shipyard’s largest union.

Ryan Jones, 35, of Biddeford told U.S. District Court Justice George Z. Singal on Monday that he was sorry for his actions and offered his “deepest sympathies.”

Maine Island Ferry Service Fare Hike Would Hit Out-Of-Staters Harder

Feb 12, 2018
FILE Photo showing the ferry Captain E. Frank Thompson making its maiden voyage to Vinalhaven Island as it leaves Rockland, Maine, on Friday, April 20, 2012.
Pat Wellenbach / Associated Press

Maine’s ferry service is poised to increase rates for the first time in nearly a decade, but some islanders worry the new system will create gridlock on the docks and that summer residents will get a raw deal.

High Demand Of Firewood Keeps Dealers, Nonprofit Group Scrambling To Keep Up

Feb 10, 2018
Robert F. Bukaty / Bangor Daily News

According to folk wisdom, early February’s Candlemas Day marks the halfway point of winter and serves as a reminder for cold-dwelling folks to make sure they are not running through their supplies too fast. Or, as the old saying goes, “half the wood and half the hay, you should have on Candlemas Day.”

Maine Senate Gives Initial OK To Bar Harbor Port Authority Bill

Feb 9, 2018
Bill Trotter / Bangor Daily News

A bill giving Bar Harbor residents permission to form a port authority — should they vote to do so — won qualified support from the Maine Senate on Thursday.

How Belfast Sweetened The Deal To Win A $150 Million Salmon Farm

Feb 8, 2018
Gabor Degre / Bangor Daily News

BELFAST, Maine — Belfast officials offered to foot the bill for about $240,000 in startup costs to court one of the world’s largest land-based salmon farms, bringing the biggest investment midcoast Maine has seen in decades.

Fast-Moving Storm Expected To Dump Up To A Foot Of Snow Across Maine

Feb 8, 2018
Robert F. Bukaty / Associated Press

The National Weather Service has issued a winter storm warning in advance of a storm expected to dump between six inches and a foot of snow on most of Maine on Wednesday.

National Resurgence Of Syphilis Hitting Maine

Feb 7, 2018
Robert Sumpter / U.S. CDC/via Bangor Daily News

Syphilis, an infection once thought nearly eradicated in the United States, has come roaring back in recent years, including in Maine.

At the Portland Community Free Clinic, Medical Director Dr. Christina DeMatteo said the city has seen an uptick in syphilis and gonorrhea that parallels state and national trends.

LePage Finds Another Way To Block Access To Overdose Antidote

Feb 6, 2018
Ted S. Warren / Associated Press/file

Gov. Paul LePage’s administration has yet to produce the regulations needed to implement a law that passed more than 2 ½ years ago allowing public health groups to distribute free doses of the overdose reversal drug naloxone.

LL Bean Starts Employee Buyouts, Ends Pension Plan

Feb 6, 2018
Robert F. Bukaty / Associated Press/file

L.L. Bean, Maine’s fifth-largest employer, has started an employee buyout plan and other belt-tightening measures after a couple years of flat sales.

The measures, announced last February, started Jan. 1, with the aim of reducing its workforce by 500 full-time people, or 10 percent of its 5,000 employees, said L.L. Bean spokeswoman Carolyn Beem. Of L.L. Bean’s total employees, 4,000 are in Maine working in manufacturing, call centers, stores and administrative offices.