Local News

Domtar Closes the Door

Updated 6 years ago

(AP) – Domtar Corp. says it is idling its pulp mill in the eastern Maine town of Baileyville for an indefinite period because of the poor global economy.Montreal-based Domtar said Thursday the facility will shut down on May 5, affecting about 300 employees. Chief Executive John Williams said the industry is suffering from weak global demand for pulp, high inventory levels and depressed prices. With no immediate recovery on the horizon, he said the company must reduce its manufacturing capacity.Gov. John Baldacci said he has assigned state officials to work with Domtar to see if there is a way to keep the mill open.We’ll have more on this story coming up tonight on TV5 News at 5 and 6.

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Maine and Mental Illness: Services Found to be Lacking

Updated 6 years ago

A court-named analyst says the state of Maine is out of compliance again with a long-standing agreement to meet the needs of mentally ill people. Elizabeth Jones, who was hired to evaluate the effects of state budget cuts on services to some 12,000 mentally ill people, filed her 18-page report Wednesday in Kennebec County Superior Court. Jones concludes, “that the Department has failed to balance funding for all individuals with serious and persistent mental illness. Furthermore, significant shifts and reductions in funding for certain programs and/or services have negatively impacted the delivery of mental health services throughout the State. These actions are inconsistent with the requirements of the Consent Decree and bar attainment of substantial compliance.” For the complete report Click here. State officials agreed to comply with a consent decree by 1995, but have been found in contempt of court several times for missing court deadlines. Commissioner Brenda Harvey of the Maine Department of Health and Human Services has been contacted by TV5. A spokesman tells us she is still analyzing the report.

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Bethel Death Ruled Homicide

Updated 6 years ago

State police say a man whose car was struck by a train in Bethel in February, was actually killed before that collision.23-year-old Agostino Samson, was arrested on Wednesday, for causing the death of Scott Libby.Police say the two had known each other for several years, and that Samson worked for Libby’s landscaping business last year.Investigators concluded that the injuries to Libby weren’t consistent with the impact between the slow-moving train and the car.They believe Libby’s car was placed on the train track after he was killed.

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Governor Unveils His New Bond Initiative

Updated 6 years ago

11,000 jobs, economic growth, and energy independence. That’s what Governor Baldacci is promising with a multi-million dollar bond package.Wednesday Afternoon in Augusta, the governor explained how the $306,000,000 in borrowed money would be spent.The plan includes nearly $130,000,000 for transportation projects.Nearly $70,000,000 for research and development. $52,000,000 for energy upgrades at state universities and community colleges.And $15,000,000 for the development of offshore wind power.The governor says while the national recovery act will help boost the economy, the state has a responsibility of stimulating job growth as well.Voters will have the final say, the bond package is expected to go on ballots in two rounds of voting in November and in June 2010.

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Monson Elementary School to Close

Updated 6 years ago

Monson Elementary School is slated to close on July first of this year.MSAD #68′s board of directors voted 8-to-1 in favor of the closure at a meeting Tuesday night.Superintendent Ann Bridge had recommended closing the school as a way of saving the district money.She says with fewer state subsidies coming in, the district is having a hard time paying more than $250,000 a year to operate a school with fewer than 40 students.The closure would mean the Monson students would be bused to Sedomocha Elementary School in Dover-Foxcroft.The state department of education still needs to approve the closure. But even if they do, Monson residents could still vote to keep the school open.That would mean they’d have to pay the school’s operating costs.

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Elderly Man Escapes Flames in Newburgh

Updated 6 years ago

An elderly man escaped his burning home in Newburgh Wednesday night.Crews responded to a house on Croxford Road around 7-30 pm.It started as a chimney fire, then flames spread to a wall, and up to the roof.81-year-old Norris Nealy lived at the home.A viewer says that friends of Nealy’s saw the smoke and called the fire department.Crews from five towns came to help put out the fire.Newburgh fire chief Gary Sibley tells TV5 the old walls of the home made it tough for crews to actually reach the flames, and they were unable to save the home.They didn’t clear the scene until 4:15 Wednesday morning.

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Brewer celebrates National MS week

Updated 6 years ago

Folks in Brewer celebrated National Multiple Sclerosis week, with a splash of color today.Representatives of the local chapter of the M-S Society, placed orange flags in front of the Brewer auditorium.They’re hoping to bring awareness to their cause, and to educate the public on the disease.M-S is a chronic disease that affects the central nervous system, most often diagnosed in folks 20 to 50 years old.Many Mainers live with M-S.”each flag represents 5 people in the state of maine living with ms. we estimate, at this point, there are approximately 3-thousand people in the state of maine living with ms.”>There are other M-S events across the nation this week.If you’d like to get involved with the local chapter of the MS Society, you can find them online at WWW.MSMAINE.ORG.

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Senior Center celebrates ten years….

Updated 6 years ago

It started ten years ago as a small fitness center and meeting place….with the hope to attract 500 members.Now the Hammond Street Senior Center has more than 17-hundred active members over the age of 60.And a three-story space, more akin to a social club, which sees more than 26-thousand visitors annually.They celebrated ten years of memories today…looking back at how their space has evolved.Today the center offers area seniors everything from a modern computer lab to an art studio and yoga room….And director, Kathy Bernier, says most importantly, a place to come and greet friends.”We started with one floor ten years ago, and we went to the second floor and expanded the fitness center into a fully equipped gym, and now we’re into the third floor. Every room in the building is entirely used.”Membership to the Senior Center is free to anyone at least 60 years old in the greater Bangor region, and to spouses at least 55.They’re able to offer their programs through fundraisers…including a big plant sale they have coming up this spring.

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Madison Fire

Updated 6 years ago

A fire in Madison yesterday has left a family of eight homeless. The owner says the fire started in her kitchen, and the flames destroyed everything the family had.Darcy Mercier used to live in this trailer with her husband, their 6 kids, and 8 pets. That is, before she received a devastating call around noon on Tuesday.”When we got the call we really didn’t think it was us and then when we started pulling up on the street and my brother had called me ten minutes before and said it was us and we just couldn’t believe it, we were just so in shock.”The Spruce Street home had gone up in flames. Fire officials say the gas stove in the kitchen was the cause. The flames destroyed the trailer.”Ya know, we’re devastated about losing 2 of our kittens, and it was very hard for my children a lot of their toys got ruined a lot of their bedding got ruined, a lot of our stuff got ruined, and we don’t have personal insurance… my husband bought a brand new 62 inch tv and we barely had it three months and it’s gone.”Luckily 3 dogs and 3 cats made it out okay, and no one was home at the time.”We’re so happy that none of our children were here and it wasn’t at night time.”The Red Cross has put the family up in a hotel until friday, but Mercier is worried about their next move.”It’s horrible, it’s the middle of winter, we have six kids, we have routines, we have animals, lots of animals, it’s just for us to go out and rent, it’s very hard right now.”Right now support from friends and family is helping them to make it through this difficult ordeal. If you’d like to help the family you can mail or drop off donations at the Madison Town Office. The address is:26 Weston AvenueMadison, ME 04950Phone number (207)696-3971

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Community members read to school kids in Milford….

Updated 6 years ago

Students in Milford spent the day using their imaginations, as folks from the community took time to read aloud.”To me, it’s such a wonderful thing to do. I mean, it brings the community in, we get all the people to come. And I try to always get somebody extra special, each year, so they can have somebody different then they’ve had before.”The *community reads day* has been going on at the Lewis S. Libby school, for many years.Mary Rustin has been organizing the event for the last eight.”Every single grade from Kindergarten right straight through till the eighth grade.””what we kind of do is try to put it similarly to what they’re kind of working on, maybe…with the little grades, just something that will be exciting for them, cause that’s where the fun is.”Cori Skall had the pleasure of reading to Mrs. Lovejoy’s first grade class.”The name of the book we’re gonna read today is called *Space Boy*!””The moon shined bright as Nicholas got ready for bed.””He packed 2 cheese and tomato sandwiches, one bottle of water, and a bunch of grapes and a cookie. He fit the food nicely in to his lunchbox, along with a napkin.””Then Nicholas walked outside, in to his back yard, and climbed inside his rocket.””3, 2, 1, lift-off! He shouted.””Below, he could see this noisy planet slowly fall away.”The students listened eagerly, then we took some time to talk about the book.”It was about outer space!””What was space boy supposed to be doing? Sleeping.””What did he do to get ready? Put on his space hat, space boots, and his space helmet.””What did space boy do when he got to the moon? He was eating and his tomatoes went floating away.””I think its mostly getting people to come in and kids to see that other people are interested…..of course we care about what kids do in school, they’re our future.””The end.”If you’d like to get involved with the next “community reads day”, you can contact the school at 827-2252.

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Drugs Stolen From Local Store

Updated 6 years ago

A lot of drugs have been stolen from a pharmacy in Stonington. State Police say someone broke into V & S Variety late Saturday night or early Sunday morning.A person wearing dark clothing and a ski mask was caught on the store surveillance camera. Police say they’re concerned about the large amount of drugs stolen and where they might wind up. Anyone with information is urged to call state police at 800-432-7381.

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LURC Approves Wind Project

Updated 6 years ago

(AP) – Maine’s wilderness zoning board has given its approval for a 17-turbine wind farm expansion in eastern Maine.The Land Use Regulation Commission voted 5-0 Wednesday at its meeting in Bangor allowing for the Stetson II project near Danforth in Washington County. The project would expand First Wind’s 38-turbine Stetson Mountain wind energy facility, which began commercial operation this year.First Wind of Massachusetts also built the Mars Hill wind project in Aroostook County.Stetson II would be rated to produce up to 25.5 megawatts of energy at maximum capacity, enough power for about 10,000 homes.

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Multiples in Maine Part 1

Catherine Pegram

Updated 6 years ago

Lots of families in Maine have more than one child, but more parents than ever are learning what it’s like to raise two, even three babies – at once. That’s because multiple births are on the rise in Maine.Catherine Pegram – a new multiples mom herself – takes a closer look.My husband and I met our twin daughters a week and a half ago. When we found out we were going to become parents – twice over – i started wondering how many other people are doubly blessed. I quickly learned i’m not alone.”All right, so our ‘A’ baby is still head first”Dr. Joseph Benoit has been bringing babies into this world for more than 20 years.He’s seen more than one-hundred sets of twins – and seven sets of triplets.So he wasn’t too surprised to find out I was pregnant with twins, or as they’re affectionately known now – Baby “A” and Baby “B”. Ob-Gyn Dr. Paul Smith says there’s a reason more women like me are having more than one child at a time – actually a couple of reasons.”There’s a theory that as women mature, as they get closer to menopause, the ovaries slow down a little bit. So the brain hormone driving the ovary, drives a little harder and it tends to drive a couple of eggs instead of just one.””There are also more parents who are undergoing assisted fertility procedures and those tend to cause the release of more than one egg and that tends to increase the number of twins also.”Nationally, twin births are up 70-percent since 1980.In Maine, one in every 46 babies born in 1989 was a twin or a triplet.By 2007, that number rose to one in every 30 infants.Smith says though multiple births are becoming more common, the challenges are much the same.”Increased risk of pre-eclampsia or toxemia, increased risk of gestational diabetes, increased risk of pre-term delivery. But we’ve learned how to maintain the surveillance and manage those a little more effectively.”That surveillance includes 4D ultrasounds, like the ones performed at maternal fetal medicine in Bangor, under the guidance of Dr. Luanna Beauchamp.Technology now allows Sonographer Gina Schuck to get an even closer peak at Baby “A” and Baby “B” – from their hearts to their brains to even their hair.Smith says no matter how you look at it, a multiple birth is an incredible experience for everyone involved.”Every baby is special, but when you know you’re going to have two, its even more special. One in 80 – only one in 80 women have twins.””A twin pregnancy is a little more consuming than a singleton and commensurately more exciting.” good job!” A majority of twins are fraternal. 30-percent are identical, which means one egg split and age or fertility medication has nothing to do with that. Doctors believe our twins are fraternal but we’ll have a dna test done to confirm that.Another challenge with multiples- they usually come earlier than a single baby. So how do you prepare? We’ll find out in part two of the series. In part two Catherine will introduce you to a mom who just gave birth to her second set of twins in a year-and-a-half, and a mom of triplets.More more in part two

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Multiples in Maine Part 2

Catherine Pegram

Updated 6 years ago

Continued from part one.Bringing home a new baby can be one of the most challenging experiences a parent can face, but what happens when the crib is filled with two, even three babies – all at once?That’s the case for more parents in Maine, thanks to an increase in multiple births.New twin mom Catherine Pegram has the second part of her seriesMy husband, Jeff, and I already know we’ll have our hands full with two newborn girls – just how full is the question. I sought the advice of some experienced multiple moms for answers.”My mom got us a stroller – it’s a jogging stroller”Crystal Stanley of Medway can’t wait to give birth to twins – she already knows the joy of being a mom of multiples. Her and her Husband Joel’s first set of twins is a year-and-a-half old.”I was a surprised – I was very surprised. My husband was just tickled as could be. I was a little in shock… We didn’t really expect twins.”Hannah and Hailey were born IN October of 2007. A few months later, Stanley was pregnant, again.”When we got into the office, our doctor said I’ll tell you this right now. It’s probably not twins this time … Sure… Got it up on the screen and he goes oh my word, there’s two more. Then he was looking for a third – he thought it was pretty funny.”Both sets of Stanley twins were conceived naturally.Their parents say they’ve learned a lot along the way.”We were just very laid back – we didn’t get worked up about anything. It seemed to help them, because they can sense it.””And another thing we found is they gotta cry a little. It helped them. And some people don’t like to hear them cry but with two, you just have so many hands.”For Courtney and Donald Lacadie, the third time’s the charm when it comes to raising their daughters.Madison, Grace, and Kacie will turn four years old in April.The identical triplets – all from the same egg – were born in 2005, 10-weeks early.”Madison’s like my little helper, keeping the girls in line. Kacie is like our wild child – I say AHHHHH – Grace … I think she’s our tom boy, good one, yeah. Hahaha!”The Lacadies learned quickly they couldn’t raise their girls without support from family and friends – advice they’d share with other parents of multiples.”There’s help out there – families are more than willing to watch them for us. And just to have patience, with everyday things. There’s going to be good days and there’s going to be bad days. But it’s fun.”Like the Lacadies, the Stanleys say they love watching their daughters grow up together. A thrill they’ll soon share with with their second set of twins, and it may not stop there.”We joke about it now because we didn’t think the chances of having another set were very high.so now we kind of laugh – because if we get pregnant again who knows – another set.”Catherine interviewed Crystal Stanley about a month ago, since then, we’re happy to say she’s given birth to her son and daughter, Joel III and Johanna Belle.

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Clark Sentenced

Updated 6 years ago

An Augusta man has been sentenced to 40 years behind bars.36 year old Raymond Clark was sentenced Wednesday morning in Kennebec County Superior. Last month, Clark pleaded guilty to strangling 72 year old Audrey Lou Benn in February of 2008.She lived downstairs from Clark in an Augusta apartment building.Clark told police Benn confronted him about being on Maine’s sex offender registry.Prosecutors and Clark’s Attorney previously agreed to cap his prison time at 40 years. We’ll hear from both sides of the families on TV5 News at 5 and 6 tonight.

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Students Learn About Crime Scene Investigation

Wayne Harvey

Updated 6 years ago

7th grade students at the Veazie Community School started a project on Tuesday that integrates science, math, social studies…and crime. “Ultimately what we’re looking for at the end is to put the bad guy in jail.” “Most of all I’m going to learn about how to process different DNA and stuff like that, crime scene information, figure out how to solve crimes.”The students will play the role of crime scene investigators, with help from Veazie Police Chief Mark Leonard. They try to keep everything as realistic as possible, so they won’t know anything about the crime before it happens. “If I know who’s committed the crime, then I’m not going to be able to work hard or teach these kids how we learn, because when we respond to a scene we don’t know who’s committed the crime.” Cheif Leonard said. “It’s our job to find out who’s done it and that’s what I want these kids to experience, is we’ve arrived on a crime scene and we need to find out who did it and we need to prosecute ‘em”This is the third year this unit has been taught. “I heard that it was really fun and they really enjoyed it and I’m really excited to do it.” “Right here in this bag we can just about process every scene that we would be called to.”The kids will do everything police would do: taking fingerprints, talking to suspects, and seeing it go to trial. “It’s like a pretty long process and that at the end of it you get split up into groups like the prosecution and defense and they investigate the crime scene and come to a conclusion and we have a trial at the end of it.” “I think the fact that we bring in people from the outside also helps them really buy into it because they get to actually collect the fingerprints. They do actually process the evidence with help from the Veazie Police so it seems more real to them.” “I just think it’s cool how people can figure out that type of stuff with such little information like that, and I just think it’s cool.”

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Robbery Suspect Sought in Waterville

Updated 6 years ago

Police have issued a warrant for a Waterville man they say was involved in an armed robbery in late February.Waterville police say they believe 28-year-old Michael Morton was the gunman in Thursday’s crime.A man was held at gunpoint and robbed of his wallet and $130 cash in an apartment building on Elm Street.Police say they are also close to identifying other suspects involved in the crime.Remember, Morton is currently believed to be armed and dangerous.Anyone with information can call Waterville police at 680-4700.

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Anthem Asks for Rate Increase Approval

Updated 6 years ago

Major health insurer Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield wants to raise its rates in Maine. Premiums on some plans would go up by an average of 14-and-a-half percent.They filed a proposal with the state for approval, and now the Department of Insurance is asking for comments from policy holders.The first public meeting was held tonight in Orono.The plan would affect people with Health Choice, Health Choice Standard and Basic plans, as well as those with Lumenos Consumer Directed plans.Rates would increase for more than 12-thousand policy holders throughout the state.Chris Dugan with Anthem says the company needs the increase to continue operations.”Medical costs are constantly up, medical technology is driving the health care cost to that,” Dugan says. “So in order to ensure that the members in the pool have adequate coverage, we are asking for a rate increase.”The Department has another public comment session scheduled for March 10th in Portland, and a hearing on March 12th in Gardiner – at which point Anthem says they’ll better explain how they arrived at that rate increase.If you have comments but can’t make the meetings, you can also submit your remarks directly to the Department of Insurance. Visit www.maine.gov/insurance for more information.

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Road Rage Bill Has Been Killed

Updated 6 years ago

A bill that would have punished drivers who engage in road rage has been killed. Senator Richard Rosen’s bill defined road rage as things like sudden acceleration and braking, cutting off other vehicles, blowing the horn and flashing headlights excessively, making rude gestures and shouting abusive comments. The Bucksport Republican said his bill would have linked Maine’s aggressive driving and assault laws that are already in force. But he says state officials were uncomfortable with a license suspension provision for cases in which the offender leaves his vehicle. The Transportation Committee also killed two bills to bar the use of cellular phones while driving. It plans instead to take up the broader issue of distracted driving.

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Graduates Guaranteed a Job in Tough Economy

Updated 6 years ago

You’re hired, guaranteed! That’s right-students who graduate from Thomas with a bachelor’s in arts or sciences are eligible for the Guaranteed Job Placement Program, which guarantees you a job in your field of study. The Guaranteed Job Placement program (or G-Job) is the only one of its kind in the nation. No other college or university in America offers this type of job placement guarantee. If you don’t secure employment in your field of study within six months after graduation, you can come back to Thomas to take more classes or we’ll pay the monthly federally subsidized student loans that you incurred while attending Thomas College for up to one year or until you get a job.If you are employed within six months following graduation, but the position is not within your field of study (for whatever reason), you may take an unlimited number of tuition-free undergraduate courses for up to two years or up to six tuition-free graduate courses at Thomas while working toward an M.B.A. degree.To learn more about G-Job visit www.Thomas.edu*Content courtesy: Thomas College

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