State Workers Prepare for Another Shutdown Day 

Maine state workers are gettting ready for another state government shutdown day on Friday. Friday marks the second of 20 shutdown days included in the spending blueprint approved by Governor John Baldacci and the Legislature. But there are several key exemptions. State ferries will remain in operation, game wardens and other law enforcement officers will be on patrol, and Maine state parks and historic sites will remain open and staffed. The $5.8 billion general fund budget freezes state employee merit and longevity pay in addition to the shutdown days. It also requires state workers to begin making contributions toward their health insurance. (AP)