Maine Things Considered

4 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. Monday - Friday

Weekdays at 4 p.m. hear Maine’s only daily statewide radio news program. MPBN's award-winning news staff brings you the latest news from across Maine and the region, as well as in-depth reports on the most important issues.

Doug Ashley, ABC News / Flickr/Creative Commons

Even though Maine Republicans supported Ted Cruz in the state presidential caucuses this year, Maine’s delegates to the Republican National Convention say Donald Trump energized them with his acceptance speech. They acknowledge that not everyone in the party is ready to embrace Trump, but they believe he can help elect candidates for state office this fall.

Maine’s unemployment rate has crept upward to 3.7 percent in June. That’s two-tenths of a percent higher than the previous month, but lower than the national average.

Still, some economic analysts say Maine’s job creation effort still has a long way to go.

The news of the slight uptick in unemployment was not a surprise to Mark Sullivan at the progressive Maine Center for Economic Policy, who said Maine was one of only six states where unemployment increased in a month of strong national job growth.

Robbie Feinberg / MPBN

Figuring out how to deal with “problem children” in the classroom has always been a challenge for teachers and administrators. These students, who often have social and emotional problems, have traditionally been punished with a trip the principal’s office, or with detentions and suspensions.

AUGUSTA, Maine - A congressional candidate from Brunswick is hoping the new certification of the Libertarian Party of Maine will boost his bid to win Maine's 1st Congressional District seat.

Jim Bouchard, who describes himself as a leadership trainer and founder of a martial arts center, is running as a write-in candidate. He won't appear on the November ballot.

The Maine Supreme Judicial Court has suspended a York County probate judge for violating judicial conduct.

This is the third time Robert Nadeau has been disciplined.

It’s Thursday and time for Across the Aisle, our weekly roundtable on Maine politics. This week, Mike Cuzzi, a Democratic strategist and senior vice president of Vox Global in Portland, and Meredith Strang Burgess of Burgess Advertising and Marketing, a former Republican lawmaker.

Gage Skidmore / Flickr/Creative Commons

As Donald Trump takes the stage in Cleveland Thursday to formally accept the Republican nomination for president, delegates from around New England will cheer for the candidate, who has run largely on an anti-establishment platform.

After a decade as a spectator, former Republican 1st District U.S. Rep. David Emery is back in the political spotlight as he seeks a seat in the Maine State Senate.

Emery was recruited to enter the race after another GOP candidate dropped out, but with a political resume that stretches back to the Reagan era, Emery is more than just a fill-in candidate.

Among those attending the Republican National Convention this week was U.S. Sen. Susan Collins of Maine, who returned early to attend a veterans’ conference in Augusta. She says she is still not ready to endorse Donald Trump even though he is now the Republican Party’s nominee for president.

After a rocky start, the special commission charged with recommending improvements to Maine’s education system will get underway this summer.

Beardsley says it was a mistake to ban members of the public, the Legislature and the news media from the commission’s first meeting at the Blaine House. And he says all of the six planned meetings he hopes to schedule through the end of the year will be open.

fiberight.com

Emboldened by approved state licenses and support from the Hampden Planning Board, the chief executive of a trash-to-energy company now says the Bangor area isn’t big enough for two major waste disposal operations.

Officials in the governor’s office violated Gov. Paul LePage’s policy that prohibits state employees from using texts and other electronic messaging to conduct government business as they discussed denying public access to a special education commission meeting at the Blaine House.

LePage officials say they adhered to the policy because they saved the messages and even turned them over to the attorney general’s office upon request. The administration has now updated its policy to lift the ban on texts, as long as they can be archived as public records.

The Maine Public Utilities Commission has determined that Maine consumers would benefit by investing in expansion of natural gas pipeline capacity. The decision goes against an earlier recommendation from PUC staff, and it’s contingent on other New England states taking similar action and on a series of hurdles being cleared.

Earlier this year, at the urging of Gov. Paul LePage, Maine lawmakers created a special commission on education policy. Its charge was to take a broad look at education policy at all levels.

After a shaky first step, LePage cast doubt on the future of the panel. But the commission chair insists it will continue on and offer full access to the public.

Oregon Department of Transportation / Wikimedia Commons

Progressive Corp. wants to increase auto insurance premiums for Maine drivers older than 65. The Maine Bureau of Insurance initially rejected the request, but this month decided to reopen proceedings.

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