Maine Things Considered

Monday - Friday 5:30 pm - 6:00 pm

Weekdays at 5:30 pm 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.

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Your Vote 2014
5:06 pm
Wed October 1, 2014

Third-Party Ads Setting New Tone in Maine's 2nd District Race

As the battle for control of Congress intensifies, the race for the open seat in Maine's 2nd District is drawing increasing attention from the major parties and their allies in Washington. Within the past week, political action committees backing Democrat Emily Cain and Republican Bruce Poliquin have begun spending millions of dollars on TV attack ads. A poll last weekend showed Poliquin leading the race by 10 points. Cain calls that survey an aberration, and says her campaign has momentum and energy on the ground.

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State budget gap
4:55 pm
Wed October 1, 2014

Analysis: Maine Facing $461 Million Budget Gap

AUGUSTA, Maine - The new Maine Legislature and next governor will face a $461 million two-year budget gap in January, according to an analysis by the state budget office. The gap is the difference between expected revenues and projected expenditures. But some lawmakers are already questioning some of the assumptions in the analysis.

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Open Payments website
4:21 pm
Wed October 1, 2014

Federal Website Sheds Light on Manufacturers' Payments to Doctors

A new federal website reveals that Maine doctors received more than $4 million from drug and medical device manufacturers. It's called "Open Payments," and was created as part of the Affordable Care Act. Physician groups and health advocates alike say the new service is helpful, but doesn't offer enough information about the reasons for those payments.

The reviews are just starting to come. Emily Brostek says Open Payments is a good first step, but "it's very overwhelming for a consumer to look through."

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Lost Valley Reopens
3:55 pm
Wed October 1, 2014

Auburn Community Ski Area to Reopen

Chair lifts at the Lost Valley ski area in Auburn.
Credit Susan Sharon / MPBN

AUBURN, Maine - Going on what they say is a "leap of faith," the owners of Lost Valley in Auburn held a news conference today to announce a turn of events at the financially troubled ski area.

"We're going to open!  Yay!  We're excited, yes.  We pulled it off," said Connie King, one of the owners of the facility, where legions of school children have learned how to ski since 1961.  

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Caregivers
5:45 pm
Tue September 30, 2014

Caring for a Disabled Child - And Worrying About the Future

81-year-old Anne Palmer, who is caring for her 44-year-old disabled son, Todd, and worries about his future.
Credit Tom Porter / MPBN

According to a study earlier this year by the AARP, Maine has about 200,000 people who are described as "unpaid caregivers," providing nearly $2.5 billion of free healthcare to the state every year. Most of them are looking after elderly family members, typically their aging parents. But in some cases, the situation is reversed and it's the parent who's caring for a sick or disabled son or daughter. In the final installment of a three-part series on the challenges facing caregivers, Tom Porter examines the plight of Maine families who are worried about the future.

 

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Great Northern bankruptcy
5:01 pm
Tue September 30, 2014

Cutler Lambastes LePage Administration Over GNP Tax Deal

The Great Northern Paper mill in East Millinocket.
Credit File photo

PORTLAND, Maine - Independent gubernatorial candidate Eliot Cutler lashed out today at the LePage administration for encouraging a tax credit scheme two years ago for the Great Northern Paper Company. With the company's recent bankruptcy filing, Cutler says Maine taxpayers are now on the hook for $16 million, and have no jobs in Millinocket to show for it.

 

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LePage nominations
3:39 pm
Tue September 30, 2014

Maine Senate Rejects Dench Nomination, in Party Line Vote

Susan Dench, whose nomination to the UMS board of trustees was rejected by the Maine Senate.
Credit A.J. Higgins / MPBN

AUGUSTA, Maine - The state Senate followed the recommendation of the Legislature’s Education Committee and rejected Gov. Paul LePage’s nomination of Susan Dench to the University of Maine System board of trustees. The vote was not without lengthy debate.
 

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Your Vote 2014
2:59 pm
Tue September 30, 2014

Supporters Urge Passage of Bond for Disease and Insect Lab

Veterinarian Bill Bryant lobbies for passage of Question 2 on the November ballot.
Credit Patty Wight / MPBN

AUGUSTA, Maine - Representatives from the state's agriculture, dairy, and veterinarian industries are calling on Maine voters to support Question 2 on the November ballot. The bond would give $8 million to the Maine Cooperative Extension to build a new animal and plant disease and insect control laboratory.

Executive Director John Rebar says, currently, the lab is spread across two locations that were built in the 1940s and 1970s.  

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Your Vote 2014
2:51 pm
Tue September 30, 2014

Maine GOP Chair Takes Issue with Michaud on Tax Cuts

AUGUSTA, Maine - Republican Party Chairman Rick Bennett is criticizing Democratic gubernatorial candidate Mike Michaud over Michaud's attacks on tax cuts proposed by Gov. Paul LePage and adopted by the Legislature.

"It was a very sensible, fiscally responsible way to lower the tax burden on Maine citizens," Bennett says, "and Mike really should know better than to say what he said." Michaud made the comments Monday on MPBN's Maine Calling program.

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Your Vote 2014
1:55 pm
Tue September 30, 2014

Group Sues over Maine Wildlife Department's Role in Bear Hunting Campaign

An image from an ad opposing ballot Question 1 that includes Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife personnel.

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