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Linguist: Local Maine Dialects Here to Stay

PORTLAND, Maine — The traditional Down East accent is more than a way of speaking. It's also a commercial commodity, another part of the package that makes up, for many visitors, the complete "Maine experience."
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Mal Leary / MPBN

Lawmakers Request Probe in 2nd Alleged LePage Funding Threat

AUGUSTA, Maine — Two northern Aroostook County lawmakers are asking the Legislature's watchdog agency to investigate an alleged threat made two years ago by Gov. Paul LePage to a group known as the World Acadian Congress.
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Maine Calling Book Club

A discussion about Ernie's Ark by Monica Wood, Thursday at noon.

AUGUSTA, Maine — Republicans in Maine's House of Representatives say they want their voices to be heard when the state supreme court meets to hear arguments over whether 65 bills became law without Gov. Paul LePage's signature.

L. Clinton Boothby, a lawyer for House Republican leaders, asked the Maine Supreme Judicial Court on Wednesday if he can participate in the oral arguments on Friday. Dozens of other Republicans signed onto the letter.

Tom Brady issued an impassioned defense of his actions this morning after NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell decided to uphold a four-game suspension over his role in "deflategate."

The New England Patriots quarterback called the suspension "unfair" and said he was "disappointed" that Goodell dismissed his "hours of testimony."

More than 150 small-business owners in Maine have announced their support for a campaign that would place a minimum wage increase on the state ballot in 2016.

The Maine People's Alliance and Maine AFL-CIO submitted the paperwork to launch the citizens' initiative in April.

Will Ikard, director of the Maine Small Business Coalition, says that although many small-business owners worry that the costs of paying a higher minimum wage would hurt their businesses, that's not borne out in the numbers.

SIDNEY, Maine — Maine State Police believe a truck driver hauling 90,000 pounds of lumber fell asleep at the wheel and ran off of Interstate 95, with most of his cargo breaking loose from a trailer that slammed into a rock ledge.

The driver, 32-year-old John Rancourt of Jay, escaped from the wreck in Sidney unhurt. The truck and trailer were demolished in the accident, which happened at about 6 a.m. Wednesday.

The northbound travel lane was closed for a while, and was reopened after noon.

There was a time on Maine's midcoast when a common greeting on the street was the phrase, "Do you think they'll have it?" And the responses were equally odd.

"I heard one once, that was the men's got the tents up and women's got the pies all made," Luthera Dawson told Keith Shortall in an interview from the MPBN archives.

Some of the localisms and dialects that were once part of our state are still heard on the street, but others are disappearing.

President Obama was giving the final speech of his Africa tour, offering a critique of the young democracies on that continent, singling out the all-too-typical practice of leaders overstaying their terms in office.

"When a leader tries to change the rules in the middle of the game just to stay in office, it risks instability and strife," Obama said, aware that the president of Burundi, seated nearby, had recently defied that country's two-term limit.

The sheriff of York County is suing the county's commissioners, saying they illegally paid him about $15,000 less than promised.

Sheriff William King Jr. said in his suit that when he served as chief deputy sheriff, he made $78,000, but when he was elected sheriff, county commissioners didn't raise his pay to the about-$90,000 that the previous sheriff had made. That's the amount that was budgeted for the position.

King said he was not told he'd be getting the lower salary.

ANSON, Maine — Town officials in Anson are seeking ways to recover more than $400,000 in missing money.

The Kennebec Journal reports that an auditor sent a letter to the town last week citing a shortfall of almost $111,000 between the amount of excise tax collected in 2011 and the amount deposited in the town's checking account that year.

This comes after auditors in June found nearly $328,000 missing from 2012 through September 2014.

Fewer than 20 miles north of Portland, Ore., off Interstate 5 in southwest Washington state, sits a 150-acre former dairy farm. The Cowlitz Indian Tribe eyed the grassy field as the future home of a casino, and a developer purchased the land for the tribe more than a decade ago.

"It will be a good attraction for the whole community here, drawing thousands of people daily but also providing thousands of jobs," says Bill Iyall, the Cowlitz tribal chairman.