Supporters of the Taxpayer Bill of Rights referendum – Question Four on the November ballot – have filed a complaint with the state ethics commission over a mailer sent out by the city of South Portland.The mailer urges residents to vote against two referendums by explaining why the city council opposes both Question Four and Question Two. Question Two is aimed at cutting automobile excise taxes.The chairman of the Tabor campaign says he’s concerned that the city was using taxpayers’ money to tell taxpayers how to vote on the referendums.The ethics commission has asked South Portland to provide a written response to the charges.
One day after President Obama declared the H1N1 outbreak a national emergency, Bangor city officials have announced they will be offering the H1N1 vaccine to children. City officials have been hard at work trying to get their hands on the H1N1 flu vaccine says Health and Community Services Director Shawn Yardley. “Well we’ve been getting some vaccine over the last week and a half, we got some H1N1 in small supply but not enough to do clinics.”That was until friday when their prayers were answered. “Friday we had a large supply of seasonal and H1N1 come,” says Yardley, “so we decided at that point in time we were ready to go and we moved pretty fast so we contacted the superintendents and principals, we had a conference call at 3:00 and we reached an agreement that sooner was better.”The clinics will be for schoolage children from Bangor, Brewer, Hermon, Hampden, and Orono schools and the towns that feed those schools. The Bangor Civic Center will be the site on Wednesday October 28th from 8:00 am-9:00 pm and the same times on November 4th.For parents wondering about students from other areas Yardley says to contact your school and find out when they are planning on offering the vaccine. For school principals this is the news they’ve been waiting for. Marcia Diamond is the principal of the All Saints Catholic School in Bangor. “We’ve been making plans since the middle of the summer when there was this concern about seasonal flu and H1N1 coming this way,” she says, “and already postponed one clinic that was planned for earlier in september and now we’re just very excited that this is becoming available for our students.”Yardley wants to reassure people that this vaccine is safe and very necessary. “So it is safe and it’s highly reccommended children are the most at risk of having serious complications and of contracting H1N1 luckily the vast majority have relatively mild symptoms but there are children dying around the country from being exposed, from contracting h1n1 so it is very serious we certainly are advising all children to have the vaccine.”Diamond says an H1N1 outbreak could have a devastating effect on the economy of the area. “But then there is the other side of things where if children are home sick that means parents have to stay home too and that could really effect the infrastructure of all of what’s happening in the bangor area, when i think of my school population alone i have students whose parents are bangor police officers, state police officers, nurses, doctors, bangor hydro, oil companies, if that infrastructure goes down that’s a concern for all of us.”
Nearly 2-hundred future college students got together in Bangor today to plan for campus life – about 18 years ahead of time. The Harold Alfond College Challenge hosted a casting call for babies at the Bangor Mall. The Challenge offers 5-hundred dollar grants for all babies born after January 1st to start a college fund. Today parents who stopped by the mall got a free portrait of their child. Some of the babies photos will be used in an advertising campaign called the future faces of Maine. The parents also got help applying for the grant money.Elizabeth Vanderweide with the Harold Alfond Challenge says, “As we all know, the cost of education is increasing much faster than inflation so this is Mr. Alfond’s way of giving every baby a head start and an opportunity to aspire and maybe put their own money in.”The grant money, which is put in a 529 Next Gen College Investing Plan, can be used for any higher education expenses. For more information you can call the Finance Authority of Maine at 800-228-3734 or log on to 500forbaby.org
While some Umaine students helped out the community today, others focused on the climate – as part of International Day of Climate Action. The day highlights the number 350 – referring to the goal of reducing the level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere below 350 parts per million.The Green Campus Initiative in Orono marked the day by trying to collect 350 bags of recyclable materials. They spent the last few weeks passing out bags for people to fill with paper, plastic, aluminum and the like. Everyone turned in their bags today to be recycled on campus. Michael Maberry with The Green Campus Initiative says “Any donation, bottles or anything, will be given to the Green Can Fund, which is a fund that the Green Campus Initiative uses for more programming, any student that has a sustainable idea on campus that wants to implement it.”The Green Campus Initiative is also hosting a Trash-n-Show next month. Folks who participate will be asked to make clothing out of materials such as newspapers or magazines, then show them off on a runway. The Trash-n-Show is set for November 19th at 8 o’clock at Memorial Union.
Dozen of Umaine students fanned out across the Greater Bangor area to show just how much they care for the community.The students are taking part in more than twenty service projects this weekend for the yearly “Umaine Cares” event. It’s in celebration of National Make a Difference day, today.Members of the school’s Veterinarian Club spent some time at the Bangor Humane Society, making dog treats, grooming a few of the animals and cleaning their cages. Other students donated time at the area homeless shelter, cleaning walking trails, even setting up a haunted house at a local rec center.Ryan Bouchard with the Bodwell Center for Service and Volunteerism says, “On this weekend, there’s 300 students doing projects on this weekend. It’s really good to have those students out there so community members can see that there’s college students out in their community making a difference.”Umaine Cares started in 2005 as a way to raise relief money after Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulf Coast.Students volunteered to clean up various areas of campus, collecting donations for the work.
A Halloween parade, of sorts, wound its way around part of Waterville – encouraging young girls to get scary this holiday, instead of sexy.The organization Hardy Girls Healthy Women hosted a Freaky 5-k Run and Walk at Colby College today. The group is dedicated to the health of young girls and works to break through female stereotypes created by the media. Organizers say many of the halloween costumes marketed to girls and women are sexual and revealing instead of scary. So the asked participants in today’s event to put on their most frightful faces, instead.Allison Cole says, “We’re really just trying to reinforce how many different costume ideas there are for kids out there and just to really be creative about it. It’s really also a way to save money if your make your costume at home and put a lot of thought and energy into it. It’s a lot more fun than going out and buying the diva or sexy kitty, everything that’s out there right now.”More than 125 people dressed up and took to the streets. Organizers handed out prizes for the scariest and most creative costumes.
Despite the rainy weather, many folks hit the pavement in Bangor, walking for a healthy heart.It was the annual Northeastern “Maine Start, Heart Walk.”And participants started their walk at Husson University.All the proceeds go toward the American Heart Assocation’s life-saving research, education and public health initiatives.Local heart survivors were on hand to share their stories.And Shelly Bailey is one of those survivors.Two years ago she suffered congestive heart failure.Bailey says the walk really hit home for her.” It’s actually really great to see little kids here all the way up through grandparents really just trying to bring out awareness because heart disease is actually the number one killer of women in America and a lot of people don’t know that.”Bailey says she has had to change her diet and lifestyle, but her heart is now fully recovered.
Students at Empire Beauty School in Bangor are putting their scissors to work.As Meghan Hayward tell us, they are working to “cut-out” domestic violence.A five dollar haircut at Empire Beauty School is going a long way.” We’re helping to raise money for domestic abuse awareness.”One-hundred percent of the proceeds from the national day of beauty will go toward “cut it out” salons against domestic abuse.Amy Guiggey is the Admissions Specialist at the school.She says the money will go to Spruce Run and local shelters.Guiggey says the beauty school has a close tie to Spruce Run.” Before this took place today, this week we had Spruce Run here and they were helping to educate our students in this area of domestic violence and to help our students become more aware of signs to look for.”Guiggey says the beauty industry can be very personal and you often have one-on-one time with your clients.Which is why she says it’s important to be educated on the topic.” A lot of times your clients will open up to you while sitting in the chair and we want to be able to be a resource. So when a client is telling you very personal things it’s your job as a stylist to keep that to yourself but also be aware that there are resources out there and places you can refer your clients to, to seek help.”Patricia Ellis came into the beauty school to get a haircut.Ellis says she is happy to know her money is going to a good cause.” Oh it’s wonderful because I think they need all the help they can get to try and put more services out there to try and prevent domestic violence and help those who have already been victims.”Guiggey says it’s fundraisers like this that make her job so rewarding.And this is only one of many events they do to help those affected by domestic abuse.” Also throughout the year we’ll be doing clothing drives and food drives to help the mothers, children and others that may be affected by this.”Spruce Run offers 24-hour hotline services, emergency shelter, transitional housing, support and curriculum groups, and advocacy to victims of intimate partner violence. For more information you can visit their website www.sprucerun.net or call their 24 hour hotline at 1-800-863-9909.
Parents of school age children in the greater Bangor area are going to have two chances to get their kids vaccinated for both seasonal flu and H1N1.Vaccination clinics will be held for all school age children on October 28th and November 4th at the Bangor Civic Center from 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.Children from Bangor, Brewer, Dedham, Holden, Orono, Glenburn, Veazie, Hermon, Hampden, Orrington, Eddington, Clifton, Newburg, John Bapst, All Saints and S.A.D #22 can attend the clinics.Parents will be notified by the schools on Monday, or you can contact your child’s school for more information.
Fort Knox in Prospect is transforming into a creepy and scary place.It’s being made over for the annual Fright at the Fort.It’s the 10th year anniversary for the event, and organizers have big plans.There are more volunteers than ever before, which translates into more ghouls, ghosts, goblins and other fiends.New scenes have been added. Including a haunted woods, the grim reaper cemetery, and a killer clown circus.Friends of Fort Knox Executive Director Leon Seymour says some people believe the fort is already haunted, without his group’s help.Folks can get frightened at the fort, rain or shine, from 5:30 p.m until 9:00 p.m. Events began Friday 23rd, and continue for the 24th, 30th, and of course the big day… Halloween.Tickets are $5.00 at the door.For more information you can check out the website fortknox.maineguide.com.
Hundreds of people welcomed the U.S. Attorney General to Maine Friday.Eric Holder visited the University of Maine to talk about the role of law in protecting the country against terrorists.He says he deals with the threat of terrorism every day. “Protecting this nation is my number one priority as Attorney General. It keeps me awake late at night and it gets me up very early every morning.”Holder was a guest speaker in Orono, invited by former Secretary of Defense William Cohen as part of Cohen’s on-going lecture series.He focused on the rule of law and how it can’t be abandoned as it was in the early days of the war on terrorism.”We cannot, we need not, and we will not sacrifice our core values in order to ensure our safety.”The Attorney General and former Senator also took audience questions on topics from gay rights.”We will take the necessary steps to repeal DOMA and Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” Holder says. To the consideration of Cohen as a vice presidential candidate. “He had one problem though. He was John McCain’s best man at his wedding.”The audience shared other laughs about both men’s school basketball careers.”Even though he is younger and taller, I think he’d met his match if he were ever bold enough to take on a sharp shooter who was once known as Bangor Billy.”Holder says speaking opportunities like this are the responsibility of public servants. “You learn things from people in finding out what’s on the minds of American people we serve. You can get very insolated in Washington.”Despite the challenges, Holder says he’s confident the country will be ready to respond to terrorist threats “and proud of the matter in which we defend the nation we all love.”
Folks took to the bowling lanes in Hallowell today, bowling a “strike” for the United Way of Kennebec Valley.It was the Families Matter Bowl-a-thon at the Sparetime Recreation Bowling Alley.All proceeds go to United Way of Kennebec Valley.The United Way funds 54 programs, including Families Matter.Families Matter is a place for mentally challenged individuals who would otherwise have no social interactions with society outside their homes.Richard Compagnon of Families Matter says every year they look forward to the event.”They just love to get out in the community and give back I mean that’s the biggest thing is getting out in the community and doing stuff and it just keeps getting bigger and bigger and bigger and bigger.”Compagnon says with the tough economic times, this fundraiser is even more important.
If you are looking to turn your house a little greener you will want to head to the Augusta Armory this weekend.The fourth annual Maine Green Home and Energy Show will be taking place.Folks can learn about the savings and benefits of going green, solar heat, the tax incentives, plus much more.A wide variety of exhibitors will be on hand for demonstrations and to help answer any questions.The show runs until 8 pm Friday and will then be open 10 to 8 Saturday and 10 to 4 on sunday.Bob Cole, President of Northeast Trade Shows says as the idea of going green has grown so has the show.”Everyone patriotically is turning to green it’s an explosion of ideas that never were thought about a few years ago. Now it’s becoming commonplace. This is the place to learn about it.”For more information visit their website www.americasbestshows.com.
If you’d like to get your spooky celebrations started this week-end, then skip on over to Skowhegan.The Chamber of Commerce is sponsoring a Haunted Hayride. It’s the 6th year for the event. Lots of volunteers create all kind of creepy scenes to scare you along the path. The Chamber hands out trophies to the three scariest.We’re told there’s something for everyone.”Everything from we’ve got a jailhouse to an asylum, cemetery, killer clowns are back this year, but a whole bunch of things just to scare everybody so it’s a fun time.” The Haunted Hayride takes off from 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm, Friday, October 23, and Saturday, October 24. It’s $5 per person.
Folks at Husson University were rolling up their sleeves over the past couple of days to get their seasonal flu shots.The school joined forces with Osco Drug to sponsor a free flu clinic for students, faculty and staff. Folks were turning out in record numbers. Last year, only 50 people got the shot at their clinic. This year, in the first day alone, 450 were vaccinated.School officials say they wanted to offer this free service this year, to protect everyone on campus.”One-thousand students live on campus and they live in close quarters. The flu season is hitting us very hard and so we’d like to protect them against the flu as much as we can.”School officials were hoping to have vaccinated 1000 people by the end of the two day clinic.
A special celebration will be held in Brewer this Sunday.On October 25th, 1909, Brewer’s boy scout troop was formed.As Joy Hollowell tells us, this troop has a centennial that isn’t just in maine.”A gentleman by the name of Frederick Oliver is the gentleman that started it,” says Rodney Hanson, Scout Master for Troop One.That was back in October of 1909, at the Brewer Congregational Church. It was a youth group back then, that eventually turned into Boy Scout Troop number One.”To the best of my knowledge, it is the first troop in America,” says Hanson.Scout master Rodney Hanson says 100 years later, this troop still meets in the same church, and still retains the values set forth a century ago.”They’re very upstanding values. Its hard to find that in organizations today,” says Hanson.To celebrate their centennial, Troop One is inviting past members to join them at Camp Roosevelt in Eddington. Don Fendler will also be on hand.”We’ve been working on getting archive books put together so they’ll be available that day. So if someone comes in, or was curious to see if their grandpa was in Troop 1, they can come out and look through the books and all of the names are there,” says Nicole Hanson, Troop One Secretary.Boy scouts both young and old, will enjoy a spaghetti supper, and entertainment from the newly formed Troop One band. Members of the Brewer Congregational church will also be on hand for the celebration.”just the fact that we have the opportunity to be in a troop as it becomes 100 years old is pretty cool for us,” says Mason Duplissiee, a current member of Troop One.Today’s troop one has about a dozen members. The boys recently participated in a Camporee in Frankfort. They say they’re proud of the skills learned in scouts, but more importantly the life lessons gained from them.”A scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obdient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean and revered.It pays to be clean (laughs)The 100th anniversary celebration of Boy Scout Troop number One kicks off at 4 PM on Sunday.Current and former scouts as well as their families are invited to Camp Roosevelt off Route 46 in Eddington.The event ends at 7 PM.Tickets are five dollars for adults, three dollars for kids under the age of 12.
A new mobile unit is hitting the road and making things a lot easier for veterans.The Vet Center Mobile Unit will be coming to the veteran’s hometown, instead of making them travel to the closest VA clinic.The vehicles have been maximized for multi-uses.There are portable exam tables and refrigeration for medication storage.Counseling will also be available on the bus.Lenny Richards is a vet and will be driving one of the mobile units.He says the vehicles are going to really help vets who live in towns like Jackman and Greenville and have an hour drive just to get to the closest clinic.Right now there are fifty of these buses traveling coast to coast.
Authorities in Waldo County are looking for a man from Monroe they say led Sheriff’s deputies and State Police on a high speed chase early Friday morning.Waldo County Deputy Chief Bob Keating says one of his deputies pulled over 23-year old Kyle Goehringer just after midnight.We’re told he was driving with a suspended license and failed a field sobriety test then ran away, got back in his vehicle and headed down Route 139 towards Benton.Keating says at times Goehringer was driving over 100 miles an hour.He eventually lost control of his car in a field, ditched the car and ran off.Charges against him will include OUI and eluding a police officer.
The Coast Guard has suspended its search for two missing fishermen Downeast.The body of Darryl Cline of Machiasport was recovered Wednesday.Norman Johnson of Cutler and Joseph Jones of Trescott remain missing.Crews from the US and Canada searched for more than two straight days covering an area of more than one hundred square miles.The three men were aboard Jones’s 32-foot dragger. Home port Lubec.The boat sank just off Falls Island in Cobscook Bay Tuesday.The Coast Guard says there’s an extensive amount of debris has been recovered.
Fairpoint Communications is asking its union workers for pay cuts and other concessions.A company official says it’s to help Fairpoint avoid bankruptcy.The company and union officials representing about 3,000 workers have been meeting for months to discuss ways to cut costs. Fairpoint is also talking with lenders in hopes of restructuring its debt.The governors of Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont want assurances that any debt restructuring doesn’t further erode Fairpoint’s much maligned customer service.