February 20, 2019
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Maine news you need to know for Monday

Robert F. Bukaty | AP
Robert F. Bukaty | AP
Julia Beebe, center, Shannon Amore, left, and Jessica Lynch brave a winter storm to keep a lunch date in Portland, Jan. 20, 2019.

Good morning. Temperatures will be in the low 30s in the south and single digits in the north with sunny skies throughout the state.

Here’s what we’re talking about in Maine today.

They found something new to fight about in Belfast

Nick McCrea | BDN
Nick McCrea | BDN
The view of Belfast's harbor from inside the former French & Webb workshop. Paul Naron has purchased the property and plans to redevelop it, but those plans hit a snag last week after a contentious meeting with the City Council.

–A developer with plans for a major downtown development and city officials engaged in a testy argument over waterfront access. City officials are insisting on a permanent easement for the Harbor Walk, but developer Paul Naron has other ideas.

Given the choice, more school districts are dumping ‘proficiency-based’ diplomas

–A small minority of school districts in Maine expect to keep proficiency-based diplomas in place now that the diplomas that emphasize students’ mastery of the state’s academic expectations are no longer required.

See if kindergarteners are vaccinated against measles at your school

Troy R. Bennett | BDN
Troy R. Bennett | BDN
Assistant professor Kenneth McCall prepares a measles, mumps, and rubella vaccination at the Portland Community Health Center, March 9, 2015.

–Vaccination rates against measles are worryingly low at about half of Maine schools with kindergarten classrooms.

The first recorded Native American songs were captured in Calais in 1890

–In 1980, Passamaquoddy tribal historic preservation officer Donald Soctomah heard some very old audio recordings of Passamaquoddy songs and stories for the first time.

The recordings, made in Calais in 1890, are the oldest known recordings of any Native American words or music and the first-ever anthropological field recordings.

Love is in the air around Valentine’s Day

Courtesy of Kennebec Valley Humane Society
Courtesy of Kennebec Valley Humane Society
Jack and Diane marry at Kennebec Valley Humane Society in Augusta on Wednesday.

–That applies to the Kennebec Valley Humane Society, too, where shelter staff last week married Jack and Diane, two older pups who are inseparable and need to be adopted as a pair. Shelter staff joke that the mixed breeds act as an “old married couple,” so they threw them a wedding.

Blustery conditions greet extreme sledders at Maine’s annual toboggan championships

Lauren Abbate | BDN
Lauren Abbate | BDN
A record number of teams are competing in the 29th annual U.S. National Toboggan Championships at the Camden Snow Bowl this weekend.

–With a wind advisory in place and mirror slick ice, the U.S. National Toboggan Championships in Camden was no place for the faint of heart on Saturday.

But 425 teams toughed it out to race down the 440-foot-long chute on traditional wooden toboggans for the 29th year of the Camden Snow Bowl’s signature event.

In other news …

Maine

Pregnant woman killed in Maine snowmobile crash

Lewiston police officer found dead in his home

Maine church members elect openly gay Episcopal bishop

Bangor

Northern Light EMMC again restricting visitors with flu-like symptoms

Country star Luke Bryan will play in Bangor for the fourth time this summer

Biddeford slips past Bangor, Lewiston for state cheering title

Business

Company behind proposed Belfast salmon farm planning a 2nd facility in California

CMP told 62,000 customers they were getting refunds. That was a mistake.

Student loan debt in Maine has almost doubled in past 10 years

Politics

Mills avoids tax hikes, boosts school aid in $8 billion spending plan hit from left and right

Susan Collins: Brett Kavanaugh’s attackers ‘haven’t even read’ dissent

How Maine’s members of Congress voted last week

Opinion

The Maine newspaper editor who led a racist attack on US soldiers

Focus on effective treatment is right course for Maine in opioid crisis

Clean election funding didn’t work in Maine. It shouldn’t be used nationally.

Sports

Bangor High girl breaks 32-year-old indoor track record

UMaine men’s hockey team beats Providence for 1st time in 7 seasons

Windham man shares fond memories of late Hall of Famer Frank Robinson

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