News

An Animal Shelter in Cherryfield is Struggling Financial

Updated 5 years ago

The Ark Animal Shelter in Cherryfield is struggling financially.As Meghan Hayward tells us, the folks who run it are finding new ways to raise money.”The economic status has made it so a lot of people have to surrender their animals because they’re getting evicted, losing their jobs. They can’t afford to get their own day-to-day basic needs and the pets unfortunately are suffering.”Shelter Manager Lorna Konyak says she’s seen an increase in the number of animals being brought in, but unfortunately, a decrease in donations.”They’re now giving donations, a ten dollar one might only be 5 dollars now, and a 50 dollar one might be down to 20 dollars.”Konyak says it’s putting a huge financial burden on the shelter.”Because we still want to give our pets the level of care we’ve been giving them and stay open, but if we don’t get financial aid, we could very easily close from a year to a year and a half.”Konyak says they’re trying new things to help bring in extra money.”We recently started up a thrift shop that is going to be in Blue Hill and that should bring in some revenue.”They’ve also reduced expenses.”We have cut back on a lot of items that we use on a daily basis, more frugal about making sure we measure all our bleach and disinfectant products cutting back on the use of paper towel, trash.”Konyak worries about what would happen to the animals if the shelter closed. She says local folks would have no place to bring them.”They’ll end up abandoning their pets, which will mean there will be a lot animals in the streets and around the barrens, where they will probably succumb to the wildlife.”But Konyak says she isn’t giving up and will continue to operate for as long as she can, with the best interests of the animals in mind.

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Event to Teach How to Hunt Mushrooms Safely

Catherine Pegram

Updated 5 years ago

Mushroom season is here in Maine. And hunting for the tasty ones, while avoiding the toxic ones is important. An event Friday in Augusta could help.Mushroom photographer Taylor Lockwood will show his video called “The Good, the Bad and the Deadly”. It’ll teach the basics about poisonous mushrooms and their edible look-a-likes.The showing is set for 7 o’clock at city hall. Lockwood will also answer questions and give a short lesson on photographing mushrooms.

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Bangor Chamber Board Backs Decision to Fire President

Catherine Pegram

Updated 5 years ago

The Board of Directors of the Bangor Region Chamber of Commerce is backing a decision by its Executive Committee to fire the head of the Chamber, Candy Guerette. Guerette was let go last week after 13 years as President and CEO. The chairman of the Chamber’s Board of Directors, John Diamond, sent a letter to Chamber members saying Guerette was dismissed based on poor job performance.Diamond says at an annual meeting today, the full Board of Directors unanimously supported the Executive Committee’s decision and the way it was handled. A special meeting of Chamber members, though, is set for tomorrow. Diamond says a group of members will ask the Board to appoint a special committee to investigate the decision to fire Guerette. He says the Board will listen to comments, but not make a decision based on them. That meeting is scheduled for 3:30 at the Bangor Public Library.

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Stamp Cancellation Celebrates West Quoddy Light

Updated 5 years ago

The Lubec Post office is marking the eighth annual West Quoddy Light celebration with a special stamp cancellation.It’s a special pictorial postmark dated July 11th.They’re hoping the free cancellation can serve as a souvenir of the anniversary for folks who come from all over the country to visit.Customers can request the special postmark by mail for thirty days after the event.

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Winterport Man Restoring Historic Tugboat

Updated 5 years ago

A piece of history is being restored to its original glory in Brewer.The railroad tug “Saturn” is one of only a handful of its kind left in the world.And as Amy Erickson tells us, a man from Winterport has his hands full giving it a makeover.< "it's a labor of love. you've gotta be foolish to do this."Foolish or not, Jon Johansen's not giving up on his prized posession.Back in 2002, he purchased this historic tug, called "saturn," from Maine Maritime Academy.At 102 years old, she has quite a history."she was built for the Reading Railroad company and what she would do is run coal barges and car floats across the Delaware or in New York.""she has the classic lines of a tug and there's not many of these left in the world today. There's only maybe a handful...maybe 5 of these tugs left."A tour of the "saturn" is pretty impressive...from the captain's quarters....to the 15 ton engine that's as long as a pickup truck.Johansen is committed to restoring the Saturn to her original, 1907 glory.But it isn't easy."we're trying to get a good coat of paint on her from stem to stern, and unfortunately, i'm the only one doing most of the manual labor. It's therapeutic, but it's real dirty. One of the worst jobs you'll do."Johansen guesses it'll take about two years before he's done.Then he's hoping to share Saturn with the world...by bringing it to museums up and down the East Coast."say somebody like maine maritime museum or there's a railroad museum in portland, the narrow gauge...or mystic seaport...or maybe take her to events.""we want to make it so it's an educational exhibit for anybody who wants to know what it was like to work on tugs."Amy Erickson, WABI TV5 News, Brewer.>

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Cooking Shortcuts to Make Weight Loss Easier

Updated 5 years ago

Preparing meals at home aids in weight loss because there’s nosurprises. You know exactly what you’re eating and how it wasprepared. Contrary to popular belief cooking meals at home doesn’thave to take a lot of time. Jackie Conn from Weight Watchers sharessome cooking shortcuts to help you cut time AND calories. For quick jambalaya. Stir-fry salad-size shrimp, diced low-fatItalian sausage and chopped bell pepper. Combine with a cookedCajun-style rice mix until well blended.One-dish pasta entrées. Make simple family meals. Add chopped broccoliand diced lean ham to a cooked reduced-fat macaroni-and-cheese mix.Make a vegetarian version with chopped fresh tomatoes and lightlysteamed asparagus tips.Feed a crowd with a wild rice-turkey casserole: Stir-fry leftoverturkey breast, chopped broccoli and dried cranberries: combine with acooked wild-rice mix.Go vegetarian with black bean burritos. Stir-fry diced onions andcombine them with canned black beans (rinsed and drained) and a cookedrice mix. Layer down the center of tortillas, top with salsa andlow-fat shredded cheddar cheese, roll up, and bake until heatedthrough and the tortillas are slightly browned.Add a dash of lime juice, hot sauce and a cup of chopped cookedchicken breast to canned chicken soup. Sprinkle with cilantro andyou’ve got hot-and-sour soup. in a jiffy. Slice and arrange store-bought, precooked polenta. In a 9-inch squarepan top polenta with soy-based chorizo and a little tomato sauce. Bake until just heated through.

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Nearly $5 Million Alloted for Wind Project at UMaine

Updated 5 years ago

Senator Susan Collins says she has sucessfully secured $4.8 million dollars in federal funding to a wind project at the University of Maine.The Maine Offshore Wind Initiative would establish a National Center for Deepwater Offshore Wind Research at the school.The money was approved by the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Energy and Water Development and is included in next year’s budget bill.The measure now goes before the full Senate Appropriations Committee, and if passed, on to the full Senate for approval.In June, Governor Baldacci met with U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu and Maine’s Congressional delegation to discuss offshore wind power in Maine.

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Native Americans Benefit from Federal Recovery Act

Updated 5 years ago

Native American tribes in Maine will soon have improved access to drinking water.The Penobscot tribe, and the Passamaquoddy tribes of Indian Township and Pleasant Point, will all share nearly one million dollars.It comes from the U.S Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Service’s Indian Health Service.The Penobscot tribe is getting $216,000.It will fund metering leak detection as well as replace some hydrants.The Passamaquoddy tribe of Indian Township is alloted $346,000.That money will be used to renovate a lift station, improving wastewater services to 50 tribal homes.And the Passamaquoddy tribe at Pleasant Point will be handed $431,000.They’ll use it to pay for a water source study benefiting more than 1,000 households. The money will also be used for a meter enclosure and leak detection project in 262 homes. The money is part of $90 million dollars being handed out nationwide.It comes from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

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Rockport Barn Fire

Updated 5 years ago

Fire crews from three towns spent more than five hours fighting a fire and cleaning up from that blaze in Rockport Wednesday.Crews from Rockport, Camden, and Rockland were called to a barn fire at 5:30PM.The owner of the three story barn reportedly heard an explosion before seeing the fire.The flames were doused and the scene cleaned up a little before 11 o’clock last night.The cause of the fire is not known.

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Veterans Memorial Park

Updated 5 years ago

A ground breaking was held this evening for the Veterans Memorial Park in Hermon.The committee has been planning for the park for almost a year and a half now.The site is marked off, it will be in front of Hermon Elementary School….The monument for the park was designed by the committee and has already been made.Larry Davis, chair of the committee, says the town has been very supportive.He says this community is very veteran based, so this tribute is important to the area.The committee is selling brick pavers to help raise money for the park.They will be engraved with the name of a veteran, and placed in the memorial.For more information you can contact Laura Cushing at 415-8971, or by email at Lcushing@bluecat5.com.

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Stimulus Money to Help Repair Maine Roads and Bridges

Updated 5 years ago

While reduced funding has forced the curtailment of hundreds of miles of highway maintenance projects in Maine, $130 million in federal stimulus money is paying for highway and bridge reconstruction throughout the state. The Transportation Department says 40 percent of this year’s scheduled maintenance projects – basically repaving – have been canceled. The Legislature’s Transportation Committee is trying to find a way to bolster funding over the long term. However, one-time federal stimulus money is supporting more substantial projects this season. The largest is on Interstate 295 from Topsham to Gardiner.

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Cat Helps Raise Spirits Of Alzheimer’s Patients

Rob Poindexter

Updated 5 years ago

It didn’t take long for the latest resident here in the alzheimers unit at Birchbay Village in Bar Harbor to make new friends. For figaro, a 9-year-old cat, it took him about a day. “He’s a wonderful friend,” says resident Joan Parker, “he’s a sweetheart, no complaints, we don’t hear any complaints.” The 17 pound feline spends his nights curled up and asleep on Parker’s bed.The staff here says Figaro is quick to help out around the place. “He makes rounds just like a doctor would, goes and visits patients,” says CNA Debra Ireland, “he goes to all the rooms, he goes and checks on the residents to see what they’re up to and then he’ll leave the room and go on to the next one. he does that a couple times a day.”Many of the residents here have families who live far away…Figaro has made this place feel a little more like home. “He’s special to the residents because he actually live here,” says Ireland, “they have their own cat, their own animal.”Denise Plano, Director of Health Services, says the introduction of Figaro, along with using some other philosophies, such as the friends approach, has had a signifigant and positive impact on the residents. “We’ve been able to decrease our utilization of anti-psychotic medication, the dosing of that by 84% and we’ve been able to decrease hospitalization rates by about 90%, so just adding the cat and some of those other intervention philosophies really makes a difference.”As for Figaro, he’s found himself a comfortable home for the forseeable future.

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Bangor Family Heads to Costa Rica for Adult Stem Cell Therapy

Updated 5 years ago

A child from the Bangor area will venture to Costa Rica to be the first person from Maine to have Adult Stem Cell Therapy for Autism.As Meghan Hayward tells us, his parents have high hopes for their son’s continued progress.” What color is your popsicle today? Red, Red.”Eight-year old Kenneth Kelley was diagnosed with Autism at the age of two.A diagnosis that came as a shock to his mother.”I went through a couple years of denial of his autism diagnosis.”Marty finally came to terms with her son’s diagnosis when he was five-years-old.Her cousin came to her with information about biomedical intervention.But Marty was worried she had waited too long.”One of the first things we did was buy a hyperbaric oxygen chamber and within a couple of days, he actually sat down and traced the alphabet from A to Z by himself which was huge. First time he’d ever done that.”While the hyperbaric oxygen chamber has given them great results, Marty says every day is still a challenge.”It’s really hard because he just we can’t go anywhere and we can’t have anyone over. He just screams all day.”Another concern is how difficult it is on her other children.Ten-year-old Philip likes playing big brother to Kenneth.”We play hide and seek, sometimes tag. Sometimes we wrestle.”But he says it isn’t always easy.”When people call my brother names, it really bothers me.”After a lot of research, Marty came across Adult Stem Cell Therapy.The stem cells go into the body, find the damaged areas, and begin to form new working blood vessels that carry oxygen and rejuvenate the damaged tissues.The therapy is not done in the United States. They will take Kenneth to Costa Rica.”It feels as though, yes there is hope and yes, truly he will become a normal boy that will face challenges that we all face as adults.”A hope that both parents are holding onto and praying Kenneth will continue to progress. “What time is it? 8 o’clock. That’s right.”An Autism Biomedical support group is being created.The first meeting is july 18th at 10 am.To learn more, call 942-2459.

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New Information on Firing of Bangor Chamber of Commerce Director

Catherine Pegram

Updated 5 years ago

We’re learning more about the sudden firing of the long-time leader of the Bangor Region Chamber of Commerce.Candy Guerette was let go last week after more than 12 years as the President and CEO of the Chamber. The chairman of the Chamber’s board of directors, John Diamond, recently sent a letter to Chamber members which says Guerette was fired based on poor job performance.An executive committee voted to dismiss Guerette nearly two weeks ago. She was offered three months severance pay and benefits.But Guerette countered with eight months severance, pay for vacation and sick time and the assurance that her position would not be filled by Diamond. The executive committee turned down the proposal, offered Guerette an extra month of pay and let her go July 1st.A special meeting of Chamber members this week will focus on Guerette’s dismissal. No word on what could come out of the meeting. It’s set for Friday at 3:30 at the Bangor Public Library.

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Gay Marriage Opponents Force Referendum Vote

Updated 5 years ago

It looks like the conflict over same sex marriage in Maine will come down to a showdown at the ballot box this fall.Opponents say they’ve collected enough signatures to stop the state’s new gay marriage law from taking effect and to put the issue before voters statewide.Mark Mutty of the stand for Marriage Maine Coalition says it took only four weeks to gather the more than 55-thousand signatures needed to get the question on the ballot. He says signature gathering will continue to ensure there’s more than enough petitions.Maine’s gay rights law is scheduled to go into effect September 12.But that will be put on hold after the petitions are turned in and if they’re certified by the Secretary of State.

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Machias Hospital to Continue Receiving Federal Reimbursements

Catherine Pegram

Updated 5 years ago

Down East Community Hospital in Machias will continue to receive Medicaid and Medicare reimbursements, at least for now. The federal government threatened to pull that money starting July 10th because the hospital failed to correct a number of deficiencies. The moved threatened the future of the facility since Medicaid and Medicare money is its biggest source of revenue. But now the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare services has decided to extend the deadline for the hospital to meet federal standards until September 30. That means the reimbursement money will continue to come until at least then, too.A judge appointed Eastern Maine Healthcare Systems last week to take over the hospital and bring it back into compliance. Doug Jones was also named the interim CEO during the receivership process.

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Non-profit Group Trains for Possible Oil Spills on Penobscot

Updated 5 years ago

Imagine an oil spill happened in the Penobscot River…The results could be devastating.Thankfully, though, there’s a group of folks who train several times a year so they’ll know what to do if the worst ever happens.Amy Erickson has the story.

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Efficiency Maine Launches Latest “Kill a Watt” Program

Updated 5 years ago

The folks from Efficiency Maine have come up with an easy way for residents to help cut down their electric bills each month.They launched the new edition of their “Kill a Watt” program Wednesday at the Bangor Public Library.Efficiency Maine staffers are stocking library shelves with “Kill a Watt” kits, which consist of an electricity usage monitor and educational tools.Residents can use the monitors to determine how much electricity the difference appliances in their home are using each day.Energy experts say the program helps folks understand and manage their power consumption more effectively in their own homes.Efficiency Maine’s Richard Bacon says most folks don’t realize how much energy older refrigerators use on a daily basis.He estimates that by getting rid of an old fridge and switching to an Energy Star model, you can save up to twenty five dollars a month.

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EPA Meetings and Plans on 2 Different Sites

Wayne Harvey

Updated 5 years ago

There will be a public meeting Thursday Night at 7pm to get input on a 23-million dollar clean up plan for the former Callahan Mine in Brooksville.The Environmental Protection Agency is holding the meeting.The mine closed in 19-72 and left behind contaminants.*****Also starting next week the Environmental Protection Agency plans to begin a three-to-four month cleanup at Rolnick Site along the Penobscot River in Brewer.The E-P-A hopes to remove lead-polluted soil and stabilize the shoreline on the four-acres, that once held both an auto salvage shop and a gas station. The Agency says it’ll be performing air monitoring throughout the project to ensure that dust stirred up at the work site doesn’t threaten workers.

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Fatal Accident in Augusta

Wayne Harvey

Updated 5 years ago

Investigators are piecing together a car accident that killed a man on a street in Augusta.Police say 42-year-old Matthew Martel, who’s from New Hampshire, was walking across Western Avenue around 10:30 p.m. Tuesday night when he was hit by an SUV driven by a man from Cumberland.Police say Martell has been drinking and roads were wet from rain. Crews tried to resuscitate Martel but he died at the scene.No charges filed have been filed.

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