Maine Public

Gregory Rec / Portland Press Herald/pool

The former state prosecutor who won a murder conviction against Anthony Sanborn 25 years ago was in court Friday to defend her work. Former Assistant Attorney General Pam Ames denied wrongdoing in the decades-old case that is now the subject of a hearing that could set Sanborn free.

Charles Krupa / Associated Press

The company that operates Sugarloaf, Sunday River, Loon Mountain and seven other ski resorts will require its workers to wear safety helmets when using skis or snowboards on snow. The move comes after the death of a Sugarloaf worker last season and a federal fine.

Robert F. Bukaty / Associated Press/file

Without explanation, Gov. Paul LePage has withdrawn the nominations of five judges who were up for reappointment and expected to be confirmed by the Maine Senate on Monday.

Earlier this year, Gov. Paul LePage signed the food sovereignty bill, designed to establish local control over the private sale of food by farmers to consumers. But the U.S. Department of Agriculture says that would violate federal food safety laws, which require inspections of meat and poultry.

The Legislature’s Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry Committee has come up with a compromise bill lawmakers will consider Monday.

Lawmakers spent hours Friday questioning Health and Human Services acting commissioner Ricker Hamilton, who has been nominated by the governor to take over the department as commissioner.

“My commitment is to ensure the Department conducts consistent, rigorous and fair oversight, both internally and with our partners,” Hamilton said, asked about his top goals.

Committee members from both parties raised questions about the ongoing lack of communication between DHHS and the Legislature. Hamilton, whose entire career has been at DHHS, promised to do better.

The mother of a Micmac Indian football player from Lisbon High School says she will appeal the findings of the Wells-Ogunquit School Board after it concluded that no intentional acts of racism toward Native Americans took place during last week’s football game.

Amelia Tuplin says her family was subjected to taunts and whoops by players and fans as they were leaving the field of the Wells Warriors.

Maine’s unemployment rate edged down a tenth of a percent in September.

Maine’s jobless rate has now been at or under 4 percent for two straight years. That’s is the second longest such stretch in 40 years, according to the state labor department.

The September jobless figure was lower than the New England unemployment rate of 3.9 percent and the national jobless rate, which was 4.2 percent in September.

The department says there are 1,500 fewer Mainers unemployed now than a year ago.

Brother of Fallen Marine from Maine Says Trump Never Called Family

Oct 20, 2017
The family of Ben Cross, including brother Ryan Cross (from left), mother Valerie Cross and father Robert Cross.
CBS 13 News

PORTLAND, Maine — The brother of a Maine Marine who died during a training exercise over the summer said his family was never contacted by the White House, further undermining President Trump’s recent claim that he has called the relatives of every soldier who fell during his time in office.

GRAY, Maine (AP) _ A Maine high school varsity football coach has been dismissed after he allegedly instructed his players to taunt an opposing player for having two mothers as parents.

The parents, Lynn and Stephanie Eckersley-Ray, of Yarmouth, say Gray-New Gloucester coach Duane Greaton told his players to taunt their son every time he was tackled during a game last Friday by saying, ``Who’s your daddy?’‘

The Eckersley-Rays say parents and players told them about the taunting order before the game began, but no taunting was overheard during the game.

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) _ Students in Maine who have been learning about marine science will conclude their project by dropping kelp-growing lines in the water at the start of the winter growing season.

The Peaks Island Elementary students have been participating in a program called KELP4KIDS.

KELP4KIDS is a 12-week curriculum for second- through fifth-graders at the island school. Kelp is grown as a crop in Maine for use in food and other products.

Abukar Adan / Maine Public

Next month, residents of Lewiston and Auburn will vote on a proposal to merge the two cities. Business owners have been among the most vocal cheerleaders of the idea, which they say would improve efficiency, reduce administrative costs and lower taxes — but critics are more concerned about what they could lose.

Maine has received formal notification that state driver’s licenses and identification cards will continue to be accepted for federal purposes through Oct. 10 of next year.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has issued an additional one-year waiver as Maine works to comply with the federal REAL ID law. Maine was one of a few states that had resisted compliance because of cost and privacy concerns.

At a meeting Thursday of the U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee, Maine independent Sen. Angus King grilled Defense Department officials over efforts to defend the country against cyber attacks. 

King said simply bolstering defenses against cyber-attacks is not an effective strategy.

“Just being on the defensive is not going to work in the end," he said. "If you are in a boxing match and you can bob and weave, and you are the best bob-and-weaver in the history of the world, if you can’t punch back, you are going to lose that boxing match.”

It’s Thursday and time for Across the Aisle, our weekly roundtable on politics. This week, Cynthia Dill, an attorney who served in the Legislature as a Democrat; Dick Woodbury, an economist and former independent lawmaker; and Mike Cianchette, an attorney and former chief counsel to Republican Gov. Paul LePage.

Robbie Feinberg / Maine Public

Last month, Gov. Paul LePage informed the U.S. Department of Labor that he would no longer accept about $8 million in federal job retraining funding for thousands of unemployed workers.