Matthew Stone

Matthew Stone

Opinion Page Editor


Eyes on the Senate, in Maine and the U.S.

By Matthew Stone on Nov. 08, 2016, at 6:39 p.m.
A variety of medicinal marijuana buds in jars at Los Angeles Patients & Caregivers Group dispensary in West Hollywood, California.

Five stoned states?

By Matthew Stone on Nov. 08, 2016, at 6:12 p.m.

What we’re looking for tonight

By Matthew Stone on Nov. 08, 2016, at 5:34 p.m.
Maine Department of Health and Human Services Commissioner Mary Mayhew is pictured in a 2015 file photo.

Auditor finds DHHS misspent $13M in welfare funds

By Matthew Stone on Oct. 18, 2016, at 5:40 p.m.
The department “took an overly aggressive approach” that signals “troublesome” practices when it comes to managing federal grant awards.
The end of the state’s 27 Healthy Maine Partnerships comes as the Maine Department of Health and Human Services changes the way it handles substance use, tobacco and chronic disease prevention, but with little public explanation of the changes it’s making.

Maine dissolves 27 local public health groups with little explanation

By Adanya Lustig, Matthew Stone and Rosie Hughes on Sept. 30, 2016, at 4 p.m.
The LePage administration is undoing a structure created after years of statewide discussion and planning.
High school students and school staff interact during the event One Life Project - Youth Voice at the Cross Insurance Center in Bangor on Sept. 20.

Maine teens shared these raw, powerful ideas to prevent addiction

on Sept. 26, 2016, at 6:42 a.m.
“Our generation is dealing with these issues firsthand, so we should have a say in the decisions that will be made.”
Maine Focus
The Maine Department of Health and Human Services used federal funds in 2015 to pay for services for seniors and residents with disabilities even though federal law restricted the use of those funds to services for children and their families.

After denying it misused millions in welfare funds, Maine changed its spending to follow the law

By Matthew Stone on Sept. 19, 2016, at 6:13 a.m.
“The BDN has their facts wrong,” DHHS Commissioner Mary Mayhew said in June. Then, her department retroactively changed its spending to line up with the law.
For more than a year, a half-dozen organizations have relied on federal money to provide coaching and care coordination, psychiatric treatment and peer-to-peer mentoring to young adults.  On Aug. 23, those organizations received a letter from the Maine Department of Health and Human Services announcing all funding will cease Sept. 30.

With no explanation, Maine rejects scarce funds for young people with mental illness

By Matthew Stone on Sept. 08, 2016, at 11:02 a.m.
“To refuse these dollars makes no sense, especially because other states are using these dollars and using them well,” said Arabella Perez who previously led one of the organizations involved in the federally funded initiative. “We just don’t understand the decision behind this.”
Research has shown home visits reduce the likelihood of pregnancy complications, infant deaths, family violence and child maltreatment. They also contribute to improved parenting practices and school readiness. But the state hasn't followed through on its commitment to increase access to home visiting and improve collaboration between home visiting agencies.

Maine got millions to help moms and babies, but has little to show for it

By Matthew Stone on Aug. 15, 2016, at 6:18 a.m.
DHHS said it would reach more families and collaborate with other home visiting programs. But competition between the groups has only gotten worse.
Over the last several years, the number of public health nurses has been cut in half.

Maine has sliced the ranks of nurses who prevent outbreaks, help drug-affected babies

By Matthew Stone on Aug. 09, 2016, at 6:28 a.m.
The LePage administration, which has not publicized the cuts, had the money to fill the positions.
Maine Focus
Even as the economy has begun to recover, statewide poverty rates haven’t improved.

How Maine redirected millions meant to help poor families with kids

By Matthew Stone on June 23, 2016, at 6:16 a.m.
Documents obtained by the BDN show the state has spent at least $7.8 million in federal welfare funds in ways that run afoul of the law.

We annotated Gov. Paul LePage’s State of the State — again

By Matthew Stone on Feb. 09, 2016, at 10:13 a.m.
In what’s become an annual tradition, we annotated it.

Making Maine the safest again

By Matthew Stone on Jan. 26, 2016, at 9:06 p.m.

Costly film tax credits

By Matthew Stone on Jan. 26, 2016, at 8:54 p.m.

LePage on Medicaid

By Matthew Stone on Jan. 26, 2016, at 8:45 p.m.

LePage breaks down the Legislature

By Matthew Stone on Jan. 26, 2016, at 8:34 p.m.

Two companies are headed for a showdown over your trash

By Matthew Stone on Jan. 16, 2016, at 8:10 a.m.
One facility wants it so it can stay in business. Another wants it so it can get off the ground.

Where your Bangor-area trash could go in 2018

By Matthew Stone on Jan. 16, 2016, at 8:09 a.m.

Here’s the story of a Syrian who came to Maine to escape war

By Matthew Stone on Nov. 20, 2015, at 7:12 a.m.
“It’s not easy to be uprooted,” he said.
Burundian refugees Audrey Iradukunda, 20, (left) and Chanelle Irakoze, 19, talk with friends in Portland on June 20. Both hope to be doctors. Iradukunda just graduated from Portland High School and Irakoze is working three summer jobs after finishing her first year of college.

How refugees make their way to Maine

By Matthew Stone on Nov. 19, 2015, at 2:32 p.m.
Here’s how they got here.