Local News

Hammond Street Work Begins Friday

Updated 6 years ago

Starting Friday morning, crews will put concrete barriers along the bridge to start a construction project.

Drivers heading north on I-95 who get off at the Hammond Street exit won’t be able to turn left off the off-ramp, they’ll only be able to turn right towards downtown.

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Pedestrian Error

Updated 6 years ago

Officers say Joseph Espling, 23, of Bangor was crossing Stillwater Ave. near Chili’s restaurant when he was struck by the front fender of a pickup driven by a man from Fort Kent.

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Perry Charged with ATM Theft

Updated 6 years ago

A man accused of stealing an ATM in Augusta is now charged with the crime.Benjamin Perry, 31, of Chelsea is charged with burglary, aggravated criminal mischief and theft by unauthorized taking.Augusta police say he stole an ATM from the Food Trend Convenience store on Eastern Ave. last Monday.Kennebec county sheriff deputies found him a day later, asleep in a van on Windsor Rd. in Chelsea.Along with part of the ATM, deputies say they also discovered cash, a money box, and burglar tools in Perry’s van.Perry is scheduled to appear in court on the charges next month.

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Smoking Ban

Updated 6 years ago

Lawmakers are debating whether or not smoking should be banned on public beaches and in parks.

The bill is similar to another that wants to ban smoking on beaches in state parks. It’s likely the two bills will merge.

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Dirty Bomb Materials Found

Updated 6 years ago

The materials were found during the investigation of the shooting of James Cummings.

Four one-gallon containers were found, all containing a chemical mixture.

There was also literature in the house about how to make a &quot:dirty bomb&quot:.

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Sunday Gampling a Go

Updated 6 years ago

The board voted 5-0 Wednesday to allow the racino to change its Sunday opening from noon to 8 a.m.

Penn National said the four-hour extension would generate an additional $700,000 to $1 million in annual revenues that could yield an extra $350,000 to $500,000 in taxes for the state.

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Moholland Pleads Guilty

Updated 6 years ago

Tina Moholland, 37, pleaded guilty Tuesday to embezzlement. She remains free on bail until her sentencing.

She worked as a secretary, receptionist and bookkeeper for the Calais Day Treatment Program.

Prosecutors say she stole the money between 2004 and 2007 by depositing tuition checks into her own accounts.

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Changes to the Cat

Updated 6 years ago

Bay Ferries, operators the Cat, has cut some of the runs from Bar Harbor to Nova Scotia, but has added trips to and from Portland.

The ferry will operate six days a week instead of seven, taking Wednesdays off.

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Maine Senators Support Stimulus Bill

Updated 6 years ago

An 838-billion dollar economic stimulus package is one step closer to reality, thanks to the votes by Maine’s two republican senators.They’re among only three senators to break ranks with their party and support the bill.The measure was approved in the senate by a vote of 61-to-37.When speaking to TV5, Senator Collins said she wants to see the final package come in at less than 800-billion dollars, but she agrees with the president that it’s time to move ahead with the plan.It’s now up to house and senate negotiators to work out a compromise version of the bill.

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Budget hearings

Updated 6 years ago

State lawmakers will be holding public hearings all month to get input on the governor’s budget plan…On Monday, that process got underway with a hearing in Augusta.There are a lot of parts when it comes to the $6,100,000,000 budget lawmakers are tackling.One of those parts is the stimulus package from Washington D.C.Members of the appropriations committee expect the feds to kick in close to a billion dollars.Meanwhile, those who are working on the 2-year state budget have to cut $200,000,000 on top of another $840,000,000.This is the first time since 1974 that lawmakers have had a smaller budget going forward.Committee chair Senator Bill Diamond says while the stimulus package from Washington is a plus, there are some challenges that come with it. “The biggest problem for us will be how do we structure that one time money. We’ve never had to do that before and it’s going to be a huge responsibility.”As it stands right now Maine could receive more than $400,000,000 to help the Medicaid program, $260,000,000 to help state and local government. $200,000,000 is slated for roads and bridges, and $100,000,000 will go to special education.Committee chair Emily Cain says an account for additional money has been established. She says that money would likely go to health care, including money the state owes hospitals.Economists are predicting the stimulus package could save 15,000 jobs here in Maine.

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Four day week shelved, for now

Updated 6 years ago

Lawmakers studying the idea of a four-day school week haven’t finished their homework yet…Members of the education and cultural affairs committee held a session on Monday to hear from the public.The plan would count the school year by hours, not days.Supporters say it’s not designed to enforce a four-day school week. Instead, it gives each district more options to save money because of budget cuts or high energy costs.Those against the idea are concerned about such things as more child care costs for parents, school days that are too long, and shortchanging special needs students. “One size does not fit all, with consolidation, that was our problem. We tried to fit everybody into the same round hole and this allows them some flexibility.” Said Senator Nancy Sullivan. “These kids have to have a consistent schedule and expectations need to be consistent.” Heidi Bowden is just one of the parents concerned about the plan since her daughter is autistic and relies on a set routine. “And the four days on, 3 days off or if there’s a snow day, they’ll actually have 3 days on and 4 days off, I just can’t imagine that for her.”After hearing comments on Monday committee members decided to table the proposal for now.When they address it again, they could make changes to the plan or send a recommendation to the legislature on whether or not it should be approved.

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Tobin back in court

Updated 6 years ago

Attorneys for James Tobin have asked a federal judge in Maine to drop the remaining charges against him…The former Republican strategist was convicted for his roll in a 2002 election day phone jamming scheme, but that conviction was later overturned.He now wants a judge to drop charges that he lied to investigators about his roll in the plan.His lawyer says persuing the charges would amount to vindictive prosecution since the original case was overturned.

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Peru crash kills two

Updated 6 years ago

Two people are dead after a head-on collision in the Western Maine town of Peru…It happened around 7:30 Monday morning.Police say 48-year-old Carl Grant and 31-year-old Christine Sterry, both from Peru, were traveling toward each other on Route 108 when Sterry’s minivan suddenly crossed the center line.She collided head-on with Grant’s Jeep on a straight stretch of road, killing both of them instantly.Investigators are now trying to determine what caused Sterry to cross the center line.

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Peru Crash Kills Two

Updated 6 years ago

It happened around 7:30 Monday morning.

Police say 48-year-old Carl Grant and 31-year-old Christine Sterry, both from Peru, were traveling toward each other on Route 108 when Sterry’s minivan suddenly crossed the center line.

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Cushing Plea Change?

Updated 6 years ago

22-year-old Matthew Cushing previously pleaded not guilty to three counts of murder and one count of arson.

He’s accused of stabbing his mother and stepfather, Carol and Christopher Bolduc, and his 15-year-old half brother, and then setting fire to the their Old Orchard Beach home on February 20 of last year.

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Tobin Back in Court

Updated 6 years ago

The former Republican strategist was convicted for his roll in a 2002 election day phone jamming scheme, but that conviction was later overturned.

He now wants a judge to drop charges that he lied to investigators about his roll in the plan.

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Perry Charged with ATM Theft

Updated 6 years ago

Benjamin Perry, 31, of Chelsea is charged with burglary, aggravated criminal mischief and theft by unauthorized taking.

Augusta police say he stole an ATM from the Food Trend Convenience store on Eastern Ave. last Monday.

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Drug Arrests

Updated 6 years ago

The Maine Drug Enforcement Agency says a California man shipped more than 40 packages of Oxycontin, valued at $140,000, to Maine over a six-month period.

Drug agents say they have arrested five Mainers, two from Madawaska, two from Van Buren and one from Waterboro, on drug trafficking charges.

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Kennedy to Remain at UMaine

Updated 6 years ago

Kennedy and Kirk Schulz, a vice president at Mississippi State University, were finalists for president at Kansas State University after the chancellor at East Carolina University withdrew.

Kennedy has been president at the University of Maine System’s flagship campus since 2005, and he said Tuesday he’s happy to continue to serve in that capacity. He says he believes that more than ever, &quot:UMaine is the state’s best hope for the future of this great state.&quot:

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Hallowell Embezzling

Updated 6 years ago

Carmen Robillard, 37, entered no plea to criminal charges of forgery and theft.

Robillard provided bookkeeping services for Augur &amp: Associates. Authorities say she wrote 23 unauthorized checks to herself between July of 2007 and October of 2008.

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