• Mud season arrives

    Low blows are nothing new in politics. Mudslinging just might be as American as apple pie. A national pastime bent on winning voters via shock and scorn — or at the very least sticking it to the other guy to the delight of the already converted. As a daily deluge of political angst chases us

  • Everyone should get the chance to vote

    With the recent passage of LD 231, sponsored by state Sen. Chloe Maxmin (D-Lincoln) and co-sponsored by Rep. Nicole Grohoski (D-Ellsworth), unenrolled voters (more commonly referred to as independents) starting in 2024 will be allowed to vote in primary elections without having to enroll in a party first. Unenrolled voters can only choose one party

  • Cost is part of the digital divide

    The last two years have shown us that home access to high-speed internet is no luxury. When the pandemic hit, children needed to get online for school, their parents needed to connect for remote work and their grandparents could have used telemedicine to avoid being exposed to COVID in a doctor’s office. Almost everyone needed

  • An election twist

    The June 14 primary is a month away and some Hancock County voters will have an unusual opportunity. They can vote twice for the same candidate. That’s because Democrat Nicole Grohoski and Republican Brian Langley, both of Ellsworth, are running for the state Senate District 7 seat in the primary and in a special election

  • Digging the hole deeper

    They say that breaking up is hard to do but for the Municipal Review Committee — the organization that now represents 115 municipalities in the disposal of municipal solid waste — it has been disastrous. Years ago, after an unsuccessful bid to renegotiate a long-standing contract with the Penobscot Energy Recovery Co. (PERC) plant in

  • Let’s hear it for the moms

    Last year, bundled against the chill and without their children in tow (for once), a group of mothers gathered on a Boston football field. They were there to scream. Twenty minutes of unrestrained shouting later, they reported feeling lighter, freer, like a weight had been lifted. While so-called primal screaming is not for everyone, the

  • “An incredible ride”

    Jo Cooper is one of those tireless citizens who make you question whether retirement really means retiring. Nevertheless, few people are more deserving of some R&R, whether it lasts a month or a lifetime. Cooper is a Bar Harbor native, longtime Lamoine Select Board member and outgoing executive director of Friends in Action. Well-wishers gathered

  • Bipartisanship should be applauded

    The Maine Legislature came together last week on wide-ranging issues both in a supplemental budget and in a series of last-minute votes before the session ended. The headline from the passage of the $1.2 million supplemental budget is that $850 checks are headed to roughly 850,000 Mainers, but equally noteworthy is that it was passed

  • Dead in the water?

    American Aquafarms’ proposal to raise up to 66 million pounds of salmon annually in the shadow of Acadia National Park certainly made a splash. It remains to be seen whether the developers’ vision is buoyant enough for the project to resurface here or elsewhere in Maine. The state departments of Marine Resources and Environmental Protection

  • One swipe means one swipe

    The U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration last month released its 2020 annual traffic crash data, showing that 38,824 lives were lost in traffic crashes nationwide. That number marks the highest number of fatalities since 2007. Of that number, 3,142 people died in motor vehicle crashes involving distracted drivers. In Maine alone,

  • Squeezed from all sides

    The April 14 edition of this newspaper printed 101 help wanted advertisements (some for multiple positions) and two available apartments. Prospective homebuyers are facing low inventory and high prices. A dearth of housing options makes it hard to recruit employees outside commuting distance and commuting has gotten more expensive as gas prices rise. Without growing

  • Congress must tackle Social Security shortfall now, not later

    Twelve years ago, in 2010, the cost of delivering Social Security benefits to eligible Americans began exceeding the annual amount taken in from payroll taxes. In 11 more years, the well the government has been relying on to make up the difference will run dry. About 65 million people received Social Security benefits in 2020.