A bill that would keep private information on concealed weapon permit holders in Maine moves forward.Members of the judiciary committee voted 10-to-3 in support of it.The measure now faces votes in the House and Senate.
Members of the Passamaquoddy tribe may be closer to resolving a standoff with state officials over eel fishing.The tribe is accused of jeopardizing the elver population by issuing more than 500 permits to catch the baby eels.State law allows only 200 permits.Both sides met in Augusta on Wednesday. They called the meeting productive and say common ground has been found.The Passamaquoddys claim their catch limits and rules do a better job protecting the species than state law does.
A state senator has written a letter to the operator of Amtrak’s Downeaster Boston-to-Maine passenger train service saying that Brunswick residents near the site of a planned layover facility are being “abused.” Brunswick Democrat Stan Gerzofsky said in his letter to the Northern New England Passenger Rail Authority that he fears the $12 million building will bring noise and air pollution from trains idling up to five hours per day, resulting in health risks and decreased property values. The authority announced last week it had secured funds to build the layover facility and could break ground this fall. Authority Executive Director Patricia Quinn tells the Times Record, the facility would actually eliminate many residents’ concerns because it would contain noise from the engines, and screen neighbors from pollution.
Police say a young man seriously injured in a weekend dirt bike accident in Pittston has died. The Kennebec County Sheriff’s Office says 22-year-old Michael Lund died of his injuries Tuesday at Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston. Police initially reported that Lund was from Pittston, but later said he was actually from nearby Richmond. Police tell the Kennebec Journal, that Lund was visiting a friend on Sunday evening when he went for a ride alone on the bike. He was not wearing a helmet. Friends went looking for him when they could no longer hear the sound of the engine. They found Lund lying just off the road. The bike was not damaged. Police say the investigation is closed.
The Maine senate has voted to increase the minimum wage.The senate gave preliminary approval today in a party line vote.The House approved the measure last week to increase the minimum wage to $9 by 2016.Current minimum wage is $7.50 per hour.Maine’s minimum wage hasn’t increased in four years.
A Pittston man injured in a dirt bike accident last weekend remains hospitalized in critical condition. Authorities say 22-year-old Michael Lund was hurt while out riding a dirt bike without helmet at about 7 p.m. Sunday. He was flown by helicopter to Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston, where he remained in critical condition Monday. Police tell the Kennebec Journal, that Lund was seen riding his motorcycle alone on Troop Road, but when he didn’t return, friends went searching for him. They found him off the road. Police say the dirt bike was not damaged. Investigators are still trying to piece together what happened.
A bridge between New Hampshire and Maine that was hit by an oil tanker will remain closed as crews start to inspect the damage. The oil tanker broke loose from a pier on Monday and struck the heavily traveled bridge. While transportation officials say the collision caused structural damage to the bridge and damage to the tanker, there was no evidence of leaking from the vessel. The bridge is owned by Maine and New Hampshire. The New Hampshire Department of Transportation says the bridge will remain closed until a thorough inspection and engineering analysis and repairs are done. The inspection and analysis was expected to start early Tuesday morning.
A lobbyist for medical marijuana caregivers of Maine will be breaking bread with Governor LePage.Paul McCarrier bid a thousand dollars at auction Thursday, which turned out to be the highest bid for a meal with the governor to benefit a scholarship fund.McCarrier says he won’t use the opportunity to lobby LePage.He put in the winning bid after others, including Democratic lawmakers, drove the price up to $875He offered $1,000 and that was that.
An oil tanker crashed into a bridge that links Maine and New Hampshire.The 473-foot long ship crashed into the Sarah Mildred Long Bridge around 1:30 Monday afternoon.That bridge connects Kittery and Portsmouth, New Hampshire.The Coast Guard says there’s no sign of a spill and no reported injuries.Authorities say the bridge will be closed to traffic until it’s inspected.
If you’ve never been camping you’re eligible to win a free weekend of camping this summer.Maine state park officials say 44 first-time campers will be picked for a free weekend at one of Maine’s eleven state park campgrounds.Raffle applications are available online and at Maine state parks. The contest runs through the end of May.
Colon cancer is the second most common cause of cancer death in Maine.A new study taking place at Eastern Maine Medical Center could help lower those numbers.The hospital is looking for folks who’ve been diagnosed with colon cancer in the last year or had polyps removed.The trial will explore whether a drug commonly used to lower cholesterol could prevent polyps from reoccurring.Anyone who’d like to participate in the national study can call 973-4274 for more information.
A man who disappeared while awaiting sentencing for three rapes 34 years ago in Massachusetts is held without bail there after agreeing to return without a fight.Gary Irving, 52, was in court in Portland Monday morning. He agreed to go back to Massachusetts. Police say he was living in Gorham, using the name “Gregg” Irving. He had been on the Massachusetts Top 10 Most Wanted list for decades.
A man fishing on a Poland lake had to be rescued after falling through the ice. Fire Chief Mark Bosse says the man walked about 1,500 feet out onto the ice of Thompson Lake on Sunday night to go ice fishing. While he was walking back to shore in the dark he tripped on a ridge in the ice and fell. The caretaker of a local camp found the man in the water at about 8 p.m. Bosse says 20 to 25 people from area fire departments, the Warden Service and the sheriff’s department used an air boat to reach the man. He was taken to Poland Regional High School, then flown to Central Maine Medical Center. The man’s name was not made public and his condition was unclear.
Authorities a 22-year-old man has suffered serious injuries in a dirt bike accident in Pittston. The Kennebec County Sheriff’s Office says the accident occurred at about 6:45 p.m. Sunday. The victim was flown to Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston with unspecified injuries. The man’s name was not made public. Police tell the Kennebec Journal, no other people or vehicles were involved and police did not disclose what caused the accident. The Pittston Fire Department, Gardiner Rescue and Kennebec County Sheriff’s Office responded.
A Zumba instructor accused of using her fitness studio in Kennebunk as a front for prostitution has pleaded guilty to 20 misdemeanor counts.As part of the plea agreement, prosecutors will recommend Alexis Wright spend 10 months in jail.Wright was accused of conspiring with Mark Strong Senior to run a prostitution business and using a hidden camera to record her clients without their knowledge.Strong was convicted 13 counts related to promotion of prostitution and sentenced to 20 days in jail.
Maine astronaut Chris Cassidy has arrived at the International Space Station.The York native left earth in a Russian space craft, alongside Russian cosmonauts, late Thursday afternoon.The crew arrived around midnight.The six hour trip was the quickest one ever to the space station. It usually takes two days to get there.Cassidy and crew will call it home for the next six months.
The Oxford Casino is being sold to Churchill Downs.The $160 million deal is expected to be approved by the Maine Gaming Control Board. Churchill Downs is a multi-state, publicly traded company with racetracks, casinos and online gambling.The Oxford Casino opened last June and expanded its gaming floor last fall.
SCARBOROUGH, Maine (AP) – A man living in a Scarborough motel is facing charges for allegedly tattooing two 14-year-old girls. Joshua Grant was charged Thursday after police executed a search warrant at The Downeaster Motel. All tattoo artists in Maine must be licensed by the state, and it is illegal to tattoo anyone younger than 18. Police say the 35-year-old Grant did not have a license. He’s charged with tattooing a minor, tattooing without a license, endangering the welfare of a child, unlawful sexual contact and assault. He was not arrested because the charges are misdemeanors. Police learned of the tattoos after being notified by a school guidance counselor in the town where the girls live. That town was not disclosed.(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) – Maine Attorney General Janet Mills says the state is joining South Carolina and other states in defending the federal Indian Child Welfare Act in a case going before the U.S. Supreme Court. Mills said the state signed an amicus brief Thursday in a case in which a child born to a father who was a tribal member and non-tribal mother was put up for adoption by the mother. A non-Indian family adopted the child. The South Carolina Supreme Court ultimately ruled the adoption violated the Indian Child Care Act. Maine’s native American legislative representatives and Mills say the case has implications in Maine. Mills says a process is under way to investigate systematic removal of tribal children from their households prior to passage of the Indian Child Welfare Act in 1978.(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
PORTLAND, Maine (AP) – Gov. Paul LePage is condemning the Portland mayor for calling for the Maine attorney general to investigate allegations of financial mismanagement at a charter school. Mayor Mike Brennan had asked the attorney general to investigate Baxter Academy for Technology and Science and have all state contract negotiations with the school put on hold until an investigation is completed. The founder and executive director of the school was fired for what the board said was a “pattern of mismanagement.” John Jaques has denied any financial mismanagement. LePage said Thursday that Attorney General Janet Mills has declined to get involved, saying the state charter school commission has the authority to ensure fiscal capability of charter schools. LePage called Brennan’s request an attack against the proposed school and charter schools in general.(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)