In this Sept. 8, 2021, file photo, sailboats take advantage of strong winds on Casco Bay near Portland Head Light off Cape Elizabeth. Credit: Robert F. Bukaty / AP

Today is Thursday. Temperatures will be in the low 70s, with sunny skies throughout the state. Here’s what we’re talking about in Maine today.

The latest on the coronavirus in Maine

Seven more Mainers have died and another 778 coronavirus cases reported across the state, according to the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention. That brings the statewide death toll to 976.

The coronavirus is continuing to disrupt the school year and the Old Town high school, along with the Caribou elementary school, have announced remote learning due to an outbreak of the virus.

Nearly 50 people at RSU 24 in Hancock County have been asked to quarantine due to a COVID-19 exposure.

Despite the rise in cases, new data show that three-quarters of the staff at schools throughout the state are vaccinated against the coronavirus.

Top Maine Democrat’s positive COVID-19 test came a day after Portland fundraiser

The cases caused Troy Jackson and Eloise Vitelli to become some of the most prominent Maine politicians to disclose a breakthrough COVID-19 case alongside U.S. Sen. Angus King, an independent who tested positive last month.

Bangor City Council candidate owes more than $80,000 in back taxes dating back 7 years

The city has also condemned two of the six properties owned by James Butler Jr., deeming them unsafe to occupy.

A new Bangor police car is piquing interest as the department’s 1st electric vehicle

The Bangor Police Department’s use of the car could be a precursor to a larger transition away from fossil fuels throughout the state.

Brewer is concerned about inmates’ early releases at overcrowded county jail

The 161-year-old Penobscot County Jail on Hammond Street has seen chronic overcrowding over the years, and the county has weighed a handful of plans to either build a new jail or add onto the existing facility.

Lawsuit alleges that Portland police didn’t help man drowning in Back Cove

The father of a man who died last year after police chased him into Portland’s Back Cove has filed a federal wrongful death lawsuit alleging that officers stood by and watched his son drown instead of taking steps to save his life.

Brewer is concerned about inmates’ early releases at overcrowded county jail

The 161-year-old Penobscot County Jail on Hammond Street has seen chronic overcrowding over the years, and the county has weighed a handful of plans to either build a new jail or add onto the existing facility.

195-year-old Maine church finally welcomes all with its 1st elevator

The Unitarian Universalist church now has an elevator, making it accessible to everyone for the first time since it was built in 1826.

Walmart wants Ellsworth to cut its local property tax bill in half

But the city wants to know how much money the local store has pulled in — and Walmart is refusing to say.

Maine hospitality industry anticipates future with fewer workers but more training

The hospitality and tourism industry is one of Maine’s largest economic sectors with $11 billion in annual sales and employing one in every seven residents.

Black bear and cubs provide excitement on a mountain bike ride in The County

Colin Jandreau came across this mama black bear and her three cubs while mountain biking in Aroostook County.

In other Maine news:

Funeral home owner who let bodies decompose offered deal

Scouting for deer in an unfamiliar area is a challenge for hunters

UMaine will join Orono and Bangor on regional climate change planning

A new Chinese eatery has replaced Bangor’s China Light on Broadway

Brewer will allow recreational marijuana shops to open in the city

Maine’s fall foliage display is just starting

Portland approves new homeless shelter to house hundreds

Leela Stockley

Leela Stockley is an alumna of the University of Maine. She was raised in northern Maine, and loves her cat Wesley and staying active in the Maine outdoors.