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Federal Judge Orders Plan to Clean Up Mercury in Penobscot River

ORRINGTON, Maine - The former owners of an Orrington chemical plant must pay for an engineering study to figure out how to clean up toxic mercury dumped in the Penobscot River in the 1960s and 70s.
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Susan Sharon

Hiking Pressure on Appalachian Trail Prompts Reassessment of Trail's End at Mount Katahdin

MILLINOCKET, Maine - The Appalachian Trail, already popular with hikers, is expected to see a big bump in traffic with the release of "A Walk in the Woods," the movie based on the memoir of two men's experience along the 2,200-mile route that runs from Georgia to Maine.
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WASHINGTON — Congress goes back to work next week and it's clear they will not be able to pass new budget bills to fund government by the end of the month, when the new budget year starts.

That is raising the prospect of a partial federal government shutdown. U.S. Sen. Susan Collins says she will do all she can to stop that from happening.

"My No. 1 priority is to prevent a government shutdown," she says. "Government shutdowns are terrible for the economy."

KITTERY, Maine — The weekend forecast calls for sun, and heavy traffic, on the Maine Turnpike.

The Maine Turnpike Authority is projecting a 3.1 percent increase in Labor Day weekend traffic because of sunny weather and low gas prices.

The Portland Press Herald reports that Friday is expected to be the busiest day with more than 324,000 vehicles, many heading northbound into Maine.

Doug Davidson, chief financial officer for the authority, said the projections are conservative.

We're not shy about our affinity for the Cherokee Purple, a purplish package of sweet, acid and savory tomato greatness.

LIMESTONE, Maine — A plan for a Chinese-owned rail car factory at the site of the former Loring Air Force Base has been delayed because a top company official has been unable to get a visa to come to the U.S. and work on the project.

The Portland Press Herald reports Sui Ping has been trying to get the work visa since spring. Loring Development Authority CEO Carl Flora says the agency is continuing to work with a company that builds rail cars in China on locating a manufacturing facility in Maine.

FREEPORT, Maine — L.L. Bean stores in Freeport are going to close for the memorial service for longtime leader Leon Gorman, grandson of the founder.

Gorman died from cancer at age 80 on Thursday.

The company says the Freeport stores will close for his memorial on Sunday, Sept. 13.

That's a rare thing.

Spokeswoman Carolyn Beem says the Freeport store was closed voluntarily only twice before, for the deaths of L.L. Bean and President John F. Kennedy. The stores also closed a few other times, once because of blue laws and another time for a fire.

On the way to his son's baseball game on Long Island, sports writer J.R. Gamble tells me that his son, J.C., is quite a ball player.

"I have a lot of clips and highlights that I show people of him doing amazing things — jumping over catches, hitting balls right-handed, hitting balls left-handed," Gamble says.

Part of the reason his son is so good at baseball, Gamble explains, is that he started at an early age — a very early age.

WASHINGTON - The White House has announced that President Obama will award Maine author Stephen King the National Medal of Arts in ceremonies next week.

King is being given the award for his contributions as an author.

The citation that accompanies the medal states that King is "One of the most popular and prolific writers of our time, Mr. King combines his remarkable storytelling with his sharp analysis of human nature. For decades, his works of horror, suspense, science fiction, and fantasy have terrified and delighted audiences around the world. "

AUGUSTA, Maine - Gov. Paul LePage is supporting an agreement that will strengthen regional co-operation in addressing climate change.

During this week's annual conference of the New England governors and Eastern Canadian premiers in St. John's, Newfoundland, the group unanimously agreed on the importance of collaborating as a region to address climate change.

Under this agreement, a 2030 reduction marker range of 35 percent to 45 percent below 1990 levels has been adopted. Patrick Woodcock is the governor's Energy Office director.

Tom Porter / MPBN

SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine - Visiting Maine Thursday, Republican presidential hopeful Carly Fiorina promised she would increase accountability in the federal government and in the White House if she's elected as the nation's chief executive.

Fiorina spoke before about 500 people at a sold-out luncheon in South Portland organized by the Maine Heritage Policy Center, a conservative advocacy group.

By Beth Brogan, Bangor Daily News

BRUNSWICK, Maine — The Maine Computer Crimes Task Force and local law enforcement agencies have worked frantically over the past few days to track down the person or persons responsible for a series of Facebook pages that have posted nude photos of dozens of Maine teens from all over the state.