Maine news

Net Neutrality

Dec 14, 2017

With the Federal Communications Commission set to vote on a measure that would change how the internet is regulated (or not regulated), our panel discusses just what is ‘net neutrality’ and why changes to the current open-access Internet platform could change the way you access your favorite websites.

Guests:  Mohammad T. Irfan, Assistant Professor of Digital and Computational Studies and Computer Science at Bowdoin College

Michael Socolow, Associate Professor in Department of Communication and Journalism at the University of Maine, where he’s also the Graduate Coordinator

Senator Angus King, United States Senator for Maine (Independent) - calling in for part of the show

Robert F. Bukaty / Associated Press

The Maine Turnpike reached a significant milestone Wednesday — the 47-mile stretch of the toll highway running from Kittery to Portland opened 70 years ago.

Spokesperson Erin Courtney says a number of firsts were marked when the Turnpike opened. For example, with its posted 60 mph speed limit, the pike was Maine’s first mile-per-minute highway. Courtney says before that, the Kittery-Portland trip along Route 1 took the better part of a day rather than 47 minutes.

She says the Maine Turnpike was America’s first asphalt superhighway.

PORTLAND, Maine — Worker shortages in Maine have forced the state Department of Transportation to hire private contractors to plow roads.

The Portland Press Herald reports the state Department of Transportation has awarded a contract to the Ohio-based company First Vehicle Services. The contractors will work in southern Maine.

MDOT has struggled to keep highway workers in recent years. The department currently has 50 open positions.

Dale Doughty, MDOT’s Director of Maintenance and Operation, says some workers might be attracted to higher wages at private companies.

The Maker Movement

Dec 13, 2017

A look at the maker movement in Maine:  New maker spaces are gaining in popularity, more people are finding satisfaction - and profit - in creating things with their hands, and young people are learning about how think like a 'maker,’ which includes independent inventors, designers and tinkerers.

Guests: Megan Frazer Blakemore, author, maker, educator, school librarian

Jake Ryan, founder and director of the Open Bench Project in Portland

Devon Kelley-Yurdin, outreach and education director for Engine, a maker space in Biddeford

MACHIASPORT, Maine - The Maine Attorney General's Office says two people were shot and wounded by a state Marine Patrol officer over the weekend.
Office spokesman Andrew Roth-Wells said Monday that 33-year-old Jason Jackson and an unidentified woman were shot Saturday in Machiasport by the officer. Officials say the shooting took place after police issued a warrant for Jackson's arrest.
Authorities say a confrontation with the Marine Patrol officer resulted in the two being shot.

PORTLAND, Maine - Officials in Portland are apologizing after the city shared the information of more than 200 patients enrolled in its now-closed HIV-positive health program without their consent.
The Portland Press Herald reports that Portland shared the information with University of Southern Maine researchers for a study on the city's behalf. The study's purpose was finding if there were any gaps in service after the program closed and grants that funded it transferred.

Claudia Lombard / U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service/via Wikimedia Commons

PORTLAND, Maine - Federal marine authorities say they are reviewing the status of a sea turtle that lives in the northwestern Atlantic Ocean to see if it should be listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act.
The National Marine Fisheries Service says it is conducting the review of the Northwest Atlantic population of leatherback sea turtles. The turtles live all over the world's oceans, including off of the mid-Atlantic states, New England and Canada.

Why do those who have the least in our country seem to be more patriotic than those with the most? That was a question Bates College sociology professor Francesco Duina asked and then set out to find the answer to by interviewing more than 60 individuals in two states, Alabama and Montana.

Duina spoke with people of all ages and backgrounds who had one thing in common: they were poor. Duina’s findings, which he shared with Maine Calling’s Jennifer Rooks, are the subject of his new book “Broke and Patriotic: Why Poor Americans Love Their Country.”

AUGUSTA, Maine — Maine’s task force studying the opioid crisis wants the state to immediately increase access to substance abuse treatment and focus on children, the uninsured and incarcerated individuals.

The task force, in its report released Tuesday, said the state has been focusing on curtailing over-prescribing of prescription opioids.

Law enforcement officials say 185 Mainers died of a drug overdose in the first six months of this year. Last year, the total number of deaths was 376.

The Role of the State Department

Dec 12, 2017

With news of cuts to the State Department and diplomatic posts going unfilled, we speak with former diplomats about the role of the State Department in the world today and what reforms may – and may not – be necessary.

Guests:  Larry Pope, former Ambassador to Chad, Political Advisor to General Anthony Zinni in Central Command, and Charge d’Affaires in Tripoli, Libya, in the aftermath of the Benghazi attack. He retired from the U.S. Foreign Service in 2000 after 31 years of service.


Pamela White, former ambassador to Haiti and The Gambia. White, a native of Auburn, graduated from the University of Maine in 1971 with a degree in journalism and began a decades-long career in public service across the globe.

WATERVILLE, Maine - Maine police say a man is in custody following a 15-hour standoff with an armed suspect in Waterville.
Waterville police say 23-year-old Michael Joslyn was taken into custody around noon Sunday after firing multiple gunshots. No one was injured.
Police say Joslyn's landlord reported he was attempting to shoot through his apartment floor into the landlord's ground floor apartment. Deputy Police Chief Bill Bonney says Joslyn was intoxicated at the time and was in a dispute with the landlord.

SANFORD, Maine - Police say an 88-year-old man died in a crash in which a vehicle lost traction on a snow-covered road in Sanford.
Police say Donald Yeskoo of Wells was declared dead at the scene. They say his vehicle crossed the center line of traffic and collided with a pick-up truck. A passenger, 82-year-old Joan Yeskoo of Wells, suffered internal injuries and was transported to a hospital.

Keith Shortall / Maine Public

Need a quick test to see whether you have a concussion? There’s an app for that. In fact, it was developed by two Falmouth High School sophomores, who Friday were announced as winners of the 2017 Congressional App Challenge for Maine’s 1st District.

Let’s say you’re playing a pickup game of basketball. You go up strong for a rebound and knock heads with another player, hard. You’re not feeling quite right. You want to keep playing but worry you might have a concussion.

YORK, Maine - Officials in the Maine town of York are considering a land transfer deal with a local hospital.
The Portsmouth Herald reports York Hospital is continuing talks about purchasing a portion of Williams Avenue, near its helipad. Hospital officials say the land would become part of the campus.
According to officials, the hospital would consider releasing a property on York Street as part of the deal. Town officials say York could use the parcel of land for parking spaces.

AUGUSTA, Maine - A Maine legislative panel is set to discuss the cost of expanding Medicaid to some 70,000 citizens in a public referendum.
Voters in November approved a referendum to have Maine join 31 other states in expanding Medicaid. Medicaid expansion would cover adults under age 65 with incomes at or below 138 percent of the federal poverty level. That's $16,643 for a single person or $22,412 for a family of two.
Republican Gov. Paul LePage has said he won't implement the voter-approved expansion until it's fully funded by the state Legislature.