The Coastal Packet

The longtime national journal, Progressive Review, has moved its headquarters from Washington DC to Freeport, Maine, where its editor, Sam Smith, has long ties. This is a local edition dealing with Maine news and progressive politics.


Thursday, June 18

The Maine Owl - Will the salmon clubs survive? Seasoned anglers say federal endangered status for species is a "kick in the teeth" and could spell the end of a storied Maine . . . On Monday, the federal government decided to list wild Atlantic salmon as endangered in the Penobscot, Kennebec and Androscoggin rivers while designating a large swath of nearby rivers and lakes as critical habitat. This is described in the [Bangor Daily News] as "another blow" to salmon anglers.. . . I visit the Veazie Salmon Club many times each week as an appreciative neighbor. I do not fish for salmon, though I do some lake fishing. I suppose without a local tradition of salmon fishing, this marvelous little spot on the river would not be there like it is. . . This is a clash between industrial society and the environmental conditions the salmon population needs to survive and build. Since the dams first went up, the salmon basically are the losers. Change in their favor will take a long, long time and will require a lot of different communities, stakeholders, government entities--including sport fishers--to understand this big picture and pull in the same direction.

A Robert Indiana show opens at the Rockland Farnsworth Museum this weekend. The famed creator of the LOVE work moved to Vinalhaven in 1978. Indiana also did the HOPE sculpture featured at last year's Democratic convention.

Brunswick Times Record - A tax reform bill introduced by Gov. John Baldacci took just a few hours to do what took a similar bill several months. . . By 7 p.m., both the Senate and House had given it initial approval, putting it on track toward Baldacci's signature. . . [The bill lowers] the state's top income tax rate from 8.5 percent to 6.5 percent and generally [broadens] the sales tax base in a range of areas.

Interview with Portland's new police chief in the Bollard: "His annual salary in Portland is $91,000, about half the $170,000 he made as a captain with the L.A.P.D. Granted, he's now in command of about half as many officers (160) than he oversaw in L.A.. And the risk of being run over by a drunken celebrity is considerably lower here.". . . Gun control: "I haven't made a decision. I know that there are a lot of folks here that get concealed weapons permits, and for probably all good reasons. I think it's important that the appropriate background [checks] are conducted on individuals applying for permits.". . . Medical marijuana: "Again, just like the death penalty, if in fact it's the law that there [is] lawful dispensing of marijuana, we, I, will follow the law.". . . Recreational marijuana: "There are a lot of things that I think police officers should not necessarily be engaged in [enforcing]. I'm not saying that's not one of them. Again, the law dictates that, and at this particular point in time, the use of marijuana is still a crime.

Morning Sentinel - Leaving aside his reputation as a crusader or a troublemaker -- depending on which side of the medical-marijuana issue people fall on -- Donald Christen says he was simply trying to follow the law when he grew 13 marijuana plants at his home in 2004. The Madison resident argues that he was the designated caregiver for at least four patients, which allowed him to grow up to 24 plants under the state's medical-marijuana law. Police and prosecutors didn't see it that way. They said the patients didn't have the medical paperwork required by the law. . . .
On Wednesday, Christen took his appeal to the Maine Supreme Judicial Court.

Boston Globe - State officials say Maine's unemployment rate rose in May to 8.3 percent, up from 7.9 percent in April and 5.1 percent a year ago. That compares to a national unemployment rate for May of 9.4 percent, which is up from 8.9 percent in April and from 5.5 percent in May 2008.

Boston Globe - Gay marriage foes in Maine have hired the California firm that led the successful Prop 8 proposal to overturn same-sex marriage. The public relations firm Schubert Flint Public Affairs will manage the campaign to repeal Maine's gay marriage law. . . Meanwhile, supporters of Maine's gay marriage law have formed a new political action committee. Maine Freedom to Marry announced it has hired Jesse Connolly of South Portland, who is taking a leave of absence as chief of staff to House Speaker Hannah Pingree to manage the campaign. Connolly led the successful 2005 campaign to retain the state's gay rights law.

WMTW - Justin Denney's family watched on as he ascended the Cumberland County Civic Center stage during graduation Friday night to accept his diploma, but the superintendent told him to return to his seat.The Bonny Eagle High School senior's mother wants an apology, and her son wants his diploma. . . She said she and Justin both signed a code of conduct regarding the graduation when she picked up graduation tickets on Friday, but she doesn't think he violated it. "There was no misbehavior. Showboating is not misbehavior," Mary Denney said. "A bow, a kiss to your mom is not misbehavior. There was no need of my son not getting his diploma." Before the school began handing out diplomas, some students pulled out beach balls. One student was forced to sit away from his classmates with staff while police escorted another student behind the stage. . ."I said, 'What did she ask you?' And, he goes, 'She said, 'There's no fooling around up here,'' and he just kind of looked at her because he wasn't fooling around. He didn't consider that fooling around or misbehaving in any sense of the word, and she goes, 'Why do you feel you deserve your diploma?' He goes, 'Because I worked hard and I earned it,' and she goes, 'No go take your seat,'" Mary Denney said. The crowd booed, but Justin Denney still doesn't have his diploma. . . . Don't miss the video on this one.


Blogger Owl said...

Thanks for the link on the salmon story. It's good to know a few are reading.

June 22, 2009 1:13 PM  

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