Barbara Cariddi en Maine's Unemployment Rate Falls to 5.5 Percent in June <p>Maine's unemployment rate fell to 5.5 percent in June, down from 5.7 percent in May and 6.7 percent a year ago, state Labor Department officials say.<br /><br />Commissioner Jeanne Paquette says the number of jobless Mainers fell by 8,200 to 39,300 over the year.&nbsp; She ways the estimated share of the population employed in June was 61.6, exceeding the U.S. average of 59 percent.<br /><br />Paquette says Maine saw job growth across a number of sectors.<br /> Fri, 18 Jul 2014 15:05:57 +0000 Barbara Cariddi 4885 at Maine Asylum Seekers Join General Assistance Lawsuit <p>Two women from Burundi living in Maine have joined a lawsuit challenging the LePage administration's rule change that would deny General Assistance to asylum seekers and other undocumented immigrants.<br /><br />The American Civil Liberties Union of Maine and Maine Equal Justice Parters filed the complaint against Maine Department of Health and Human Services Commissioner Mary Mayhew on behalf of Rehma Rebecca Juma and Suavis Furaha, who, advocates say, came to Maine to escape violence in their native country.<br /> Thu, 17 Jul 2014 15:23:07 +0000 Barbara Cariddi 4831 at Collins Breaks Party Ranks on Hobby Lobby Fix <p>Maine Sen. Susan Collins is among three Republicans who voted in favor of a Democratic-backed measure aimed at dealing with the U.S. Supreme Court's Hobby Lobby decision.<br /><br />Collins, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, and Mark Kirk of Illinois, voted in favor of the measure, which fell four votes short of the 60 needed to move forward, according to The Associated Press.&nbsp; The final vote was 56 - 43.<br /><br />The bill would reverse the court's ruling last month that allowed "closely held" businesses whose owners have religious objections to deny women contraceptive coverage.<br /> Wed, 16 Jul 2014 20:26:20 +0000 Barbara Cariddi 4791 at Statoil Invests $2.5 Billion in Wind Project off Coast of UK <p>A Norwegian company that dropped its plans to build a wind farm off the Maine coast after Republican Gov. Paul LePage intervened in the approval process has invested $2.5 billion in the Dudgeon Offshore Wind Farm off the coast of Norwich, England, the <strong><a href="">Portland Press Herald</a></strong> reports.<br /> Tue, 15 Jul 2014 15:10:01 +0000 Barbara Cariddi 4702 at Downeaster Cancels 4 Trains Through Wednesday <p>PORTLAND, Maine (AP) _ The Downeaster train will cancel four trains through Wednesday as workers replace railroad ties around Durham, New Hampshire.<br />&nbsp;<br />&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; The canceled trains will be a 9:05 a.m. train from Boston's North Station to Brunswick, Maine; an 11:35 a.m. train from Boston to Portland; a 12:45 p.m. train from Portland to Boston; and a 2:35 p.m. train from Portland to Boston.<br />&nbsp; Mon, 14 Jul 2014 17:38:39 +0000 Barbara Cariddi 4652 at Fugitive Found in Gorham Sentenced to Seven Years <p>A man who spent three decades hiding out in the southern Maine town of Gorham after being convicted of three rapes in Massachusetts was sentenced today to nearly seven years in prison. &nbsp;<br /> Fri, 11 Jul 2014 19:46:19 +0000 Barbara Cariddi 4551 at U.S. Senate Confirms Former Colby President as NEH Chair <p>The U.S. Senate today confirmed former Colby College president William "Bro" Adams as chair of the National Endowment for the Humanities.<br /><br />That's according to Maine's two U.S. Senators, Susan Collins and Angus King. Adams was nominated to the post earlier this year by President Obama.<br /><br />"Dr. Adams is a proven leader whose engagement and direction have enriched the State of Maine," Collins says in a statement.<br /> Wed, 09 Jul 2014 16:51:56 +0000 Barbara Cariddi 4418 at Hunters Bag 2,845 Bears in Maine's 2013 Season <p>Hunters in Maine harvested 2,845 bears in 2013. Officials with the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife say that's about 26 percent of the more than 10,888 bear-hunting permits issued for the season. More than 90 percent of the bears killed were taken using bait, dogs or traps, officials say.<br /><br />But it was a good year for the natural foods bears rely on. The department's annual winter bear den survey found that the average weight of year-old bears was 46.6 pounds, compared with 2012, when the average weight for yearlings was 32.5 pounds.<br /> Wed, 09 Jul 2014 15:01:51 +0000 Barbara Cariddi 4407 at Hundreds Still Without Power in Maine <p>MACHIAS, Maine (AP) _ More than 500 Emera Maine customers are without electricity in northern Maine as the utility continues to repair its systems after weekend storms.</p> Tue, 08 Jul 2014 21:48:24 +0000 Barbara Cariddi 4373 at Augusta Postpones July 4 Fireworks as Rain Looms <p>AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) _ Maine's capital city will move its Independence Day fireworks display to Aug. 2 because of expected bad weather.<br />&nbsp;<br />&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; The <strong><a href="">Kennebec Journal&nbsp;</a></strong> reports all of Augusta's other July 4 activities are still scheduled to take place. Those events include the Old Fort Western Independence Day Celebration from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and the parade at 4 p.m.<br />&nbsp; Thu, 03 Jul 2014 15:35:30 +0000 Barbara Cariddi 4139 at