Tom Porter

News Producer

That very British voice you've begun hearing on Maine Things Considered belongs to our newest reporter, Tom Porter, who comes to us after a prior stint as a reporter at WVTF-FM, a public radio station in Roanoke, Virgina.

A native of Birmingham, England, Tom comes from a family of British journalists. He worked for nearly eight years at Bloomberg Television and Radio in London as a reporter and news producer. He is also trained jazz pianist. Tom has a bachelor's degree from the University of London and a master's degree from Kings College in London.

Tom has a strong background in environmental reporting, chronicling the drought affecting much of the south, innovation in “green” construction and building design and advances in biotechnology.


Great Northern Paper
3:31 pm
Thu July 3, 2014

Millinocket Strikes Tentative Deal with Great Northern Paper for Payment of Back Taxes

Officials in Millinocket have struck a tentative deal with Great Northern Paper to pay the town nearly $1.2 in million overdue property taxes. 

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Great Northern Paper
1:55 pm
Thu July 3, 2014

Millinocket Strikes Tentative Tax Payment Deal with Great Northern Paper

Officials in Millinocket have struck a tentative deal with Great Northern Paper to pay the town nearly $1.2 million in overdue property taxes.

GNP owns a shuttered paper mill in Millinocket, and another one in nearby East Millinocket. According to documents sent to MPBN by Millinocket Town Manager Peggy Daigle, GNP - which is controlled by New Hampshire-based investment firm Cate Street Capital - will pay $225,000 by the close of business today.

Three further payments are due to be made, with balance paid in full by July 21.

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Bowdoin Festival
7:13 pm
Wed July 2, 2014

Bowdoin International Music Festival Celebrates 50th Year, amid Founder's Departure

Bowdoin International Music Festival founder Lewis Kaplan at a rehearsal.
Credit Tom Porter

Maine's biggest classical music festival, and one of the longest-running, is underway, and has reached two milestones: its 50th year, as well as the swan song of the man behind it.

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Your Vote 2014
6:18 pm
Mon June 30, 2014

Maine Senate Candidate Bellows Calls for Expanding Social Security Benefits

Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate Shenna Bellows at a State House news conference on expanding Social Security
Credit Mal Leary

Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Shenna Bellows today put forward her plans for expanding Social Security benefits. Bellows, the former director of the Maine ACLU, is running against GOP incumbent Susan Collins, in November.

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At-risk kids
4:02 pm
Fri June 27, 2014

LePage Announces Federal Grants For 'At-Risk' Kids

Gov. Paul LePage announces a federal education grant for "at-risk" kids today in Portland.
Credit Tom Porter

Gov. Paul LePage today teamed up with education officials to announce that the Maine Department of Education is giving out $11.3 million in federal grant money over the next five years to support "at-risk" students.

LePage - himself a former at-risk child - says the money will establish or maintain 32 community learning centers across the state, in districts where more than 40 percent of students qualify for free or reduced price lunch. "I can't be any happier than to see the focus that we're putting in to help at-risk kids," he said.

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Buffer zone ruling
5:44 pm
Thu June 26, 2014

Supreme Court's Buffer Zone Ruling Decried, Hailed in Maine

A sign outside the Planned Parenthood clinic in downtown Portland.
Credit Tom Porter

A U.S. Supreme Court decision this morning was welcomed by anti-abortion activists in Maine and decried by women's health advocates. The nation's highest court has unanimously struck down a Massachusetts state law imposing 35-foot protest-free zones - or buffer zones - outside abortion clinics, declaring it an unconstitutional restraint on the free-speech rights of protesters.

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Tar sands oil
6:13 pm
Wed June 25, 2014

South Portland Considers New Tar Sands Ordinance

A view of the South Portland waterfront.
Credit Susan Sharon

The issue of tar sands oil, and the possibility of it one day being pumped from Canada into Maine for export is likely to be hotly debated at a meeting South Portland tonight. In a little over an hour's time, a special workshop will be held by the City Council to discuss a new draft ordinance that would prevent the bulk loading of crude oil onto ships for export.

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Partisan gridlock
7:16 pm
Tue June 24, 2014

Snowe Joins in Unveiling 'Bipartisan Blueprint' for Breaking Gridlock

Former U.S. Sen. Olympia Snowe of Maine took part in the unveiling of a national report today described as a "bipartisan blueprint" designed to reduce gridlock in Washington. Snowe, a moderate Republican, chose not to seek reelection in 2012 - in frustration, she says, with the increasingly polarized nature of American politics and the consequent inability of Congress to get anything done.

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5:37 pm
Mon June 23, 2014

Jellyfish on the Rise in Casco Bay

A Lion's Mane jellyfish.
Credit Carrie McCusker

Earlier this month there was a notable increase in jellyfish sightings in southern Maine waters. The reason for this phenomenon is not entirely clear, say scientists, but it's prompting some of the state's hardiest swimmers to think twice before jumping in the water.

  Carrie McCusker, an endurance athlete and coach from Cape Elizabeth, says she saw unusual looking jellies last week, just a short boat ride from the South Portland marina toward Peaks Island.

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Banyamulenge refugees
5:20 pm
Fri June 20, 2014

African Refugees in Maine Appeal for Help for Fellow Tribal Members

Claude Rwangaje, left, and George Budagu Makoko, members of the Banyamulenge Tribe who now live in Portland.
Credit Tom Porter

As residents and city officials in Portland observe World Refugee Day, one group of African immigrants in Maine's biggest city is drawing attention to the plight of fellow tribal members in a refugee camp half way around the world. The tribe in question is the Banyamulenge, a Christian branch of the wider Tutsi ethnic group. Thousands of them live in Nairobi, Kenya, where they went to flee persecution in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

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