In this Aug. 30, 2021, file photo, Jayce Lister, 7, gets a free haircut from barber Frank Crosen at Crow's Next Barbershop in Auburn. Credit: Andree Kehn / Sun Journal via AP

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

The latest on the coronavirus in Maine

Five more Mainers have died and another 614 coronavirus cases were reported across the state on Wednesday, according to the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention. The death toll now stands at 1,007.

The state continues to battle the highly contagious delta variant, and a record-breaking 88 people were in critical care due to COVID-19 on Wednesday.

During the state’s weekly COVID-19 address, Gov. Janet Mills urged school employees to get vaccinated, saying that “If you’re taking care of Maine kids and you’re choosing not to get vaccinated, you’re saying that you’re more important than the children who are in your care.

The FDA authorized the use of Pfizer’s booster shots on Wednesday for people over the age of 65 and people who are at high risk of contracting the virus due to their jobs.

Maine towns with lowest vaccination rates have been most impacted by the delta variant

The rate of new cases over the summer in communities where more than 90 percent of Mainers were partially or fully vaccinated was nearly 40 percent lower than in communities with rates below 70 percent.

Maine health providers saw only small vaccination bump between July and August

Nursing home vaccinations increased by 5.1 percentage points to 77 percent from July to August, the biggest bump of all facility types the state is tracking.

Paul LePage renews push to eliminate Maine’s income tax at 2022 campaign kickoff

His candidacy has been welcomed by the Republican base, but he faces a tough race against Gov. Janet Mills, a Democrat who has had higher approval ratings thus far than the former two-term governor achieved during his divisive eight years in Augusta.

Man whose remains were found in northern Maine isn’t the 1st member of his family to die mysteriously

The mother of Christopher Roof disappeared in 1979. Her remains were found two years later and her cause of death remains undetermined.

State investigating deaths of 100,000 salmon at fish farm off MDI

The fish that died near Black Island make up only 10 percent of fish being grown at the site.

Aroostook couple working to restore original Pine Tree Trail scenic highway in Maine

The original Pine Tree Trail was created in 1937 to help the state’s struggling economy by capitalizing on its tourism appeal during the Great Depression.

Departing Old Town councilor laments that no one has stepped up to replace her

“I grew up in an age when civic duty was an important part of your community. That was just part of our schooling.”

Furniture chain plans to open in former Bangor Toys R Us building

Bob’s Discount Furniture has been issued a building permit for the former toy store, Bangor Director of Code Enforcement Jeff Wallace said Wednesday.

Nationally acclaimed Waldo County chef sells story rights to major Hollywood producer

Erin French, owner of and chef at nationally acclaimed restaurant The Lost Kitchen, just sold the film rights for her memoir to producer Bruna Papandrea, who has been involved with TV shows and movies, including “Big Little Lies,” “Wild” and “Gone Girl.”

In other Maine news

$10,000 reward offered in unsolved Caribou homicide

Jury finds Auburn man not guilty of murder in 2019 Walmart parking lot shooting

Mass. man convicted of Oakfield man’s 2016 slaying during retrial

Planning Board opposes zoning change that would allow emergency shelters in Bangor

Recovered skeletal remains confirmed to be woman missing since 2019

2-year-old child found unresponsive in Cornville pond

New Jersey’s official tall ship in Belfast for some TLC

UMaine women’s ice hockey coach says this year’s roster is ‘deepest team’ in 9 years

Former Bangor High and UMaine pitcher signs with New York Mets organization

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.