AUGUSTA, Maine — Maine Secretary of State Charles Summers has called for a special election on May 10 to fill the spot that was vacated by state Sen. Larry Bliss of South Portland.
Bliss, who is resigning to take an out-of-state job, says his last day will be April 15. District 7 includes Cape Elizabeth and Scarborough, in addition to South Portland.
Democratic, Republican and Green Independent parties have until April 7 to nominate candidates. That’s also the deadline for nonparty candidates to file their petitions.
Bliss is in his second term in the Maine Senate after serving in the Maine House for eight years. He says he has been unemployed and unable to find work in Maine, so he is taking a job as an administrator at California State University-East Bay outside of San Francisco.
Biddeford food pantry falling on hard times
BIDDEFORD, Maine — A 30-year-old food pantry is having a difficult time staying open.
The Friends of Community Action Food Pantry in Biddeford was started in 1981. Owner Susan Riley says it was the first of its kind in the state. She tells WCSH-TV the need is still great, but now donations are spread thin. She also says the pantry is having a hard time getting the funds to stay open.
Food costs about $3,000 a month, plus they pay rent and maintenance on their vehicles.
Riley says the pantry can stay open for about six more months. A donation fund has been established.
Maine, NH firefighters ski in gear for fundraiser
NEWRY, Maine — Firefighters from Maine and New Hampshire held on for their lives as they raced on skis in full gear with fire hoses for a fundraising benefit at Sunday River ski resort.
Twenty teams of firefighters turned out Sunday for the Maine resort’s 21st annual firefighters’ fundraising race, with benefits going to Maine Handicapped Skiing. Participants skied a giant slalom race course while decked out in helmets, jackets and pants, with each team carrying a 50-foot fire hose. Each team had at least five firefighters who were required to hold the hose at the start and finish, with a one-second penalty every time a racer let go in between.
The Wolfeboro, N.H., fire department took first place, with teams from Livermore Falls and Bethel taking second and third.
RI considers allowing wine shipments to consumers
PROVIDENCE, R.I. — Rhode Island wine consumers can take heart: Legislation pending in the Legislature would allow direct shipments of wine to a consumer’s door.
Currently Rhode Island is one of about a dozen states that don’t permit wineries or wine retailers to ship directly to consumers. That would change under a bill reviewed by a state Senate committee Wednesday.
The proposal would require consumers to show ID and sign for all deliveries. Consumers would be limited to 24 cases a year from a single distributor who is licensed by the state to ship wine.
Currently, Rhode Island residents may only receive wine shipments if they placed the order in person at a winery or wine retailer.