• All pain no gain?

    Maine’s beleaguered wild blueberry industry is suffering from trade dispute retaliation. This month, the state of Maine took appropriate action and petitioned the federal government to provide temporary relief to the growers. We hopefully await the outcome. President Trump is exercising his unilateral authority to impose economic tariffs on a range of U.S. imports manufactured

  • Happy Birthday, Maine

    Friday marks the 200th anniversary of the vote to separate the District of Maine from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Statehood didn’t come until nearly seven months later on March 15, 1820. At a time when the nation was embroiled in controversy over slavery, Maine’s admission to the union was a feat of political compromise so

  • Maine’s government workers

    Nearly one of out of every six workers in Maine is employed by the government — federal, state or local. And according to the Maine Department of Labor Center for Workforce Research and Information, the average weekly wage paid to federal employees is considerably higher than the average earnings of workers across all other industries.

  • More is more

    Ellsworth’s annual report is hot off the presses and a little lighter this year. Actually make that recently published and shorter. It doesn’t weigh a thing and there were no presses; the city’s report has gone digital. (Find it online at ellsworthmaine.gov.) While we in the newspaper business appreciate a printed product, the move saved

  • A door closes

    Open Door Recovery Center’s closure after 35 years demonstrates that sometimes it’s not only the individuals battling addiction who are in crisis, but the organizations that serve them too. Open Door has been on the front lines of the drug epidemic in Hancock County. The need for treatment for substance-use disorder is greater than ever

  • Road warriors

    Sunshine, salt air and traffic — it’s summertime in Maine. The flood of seasonal visitors is a welcome sight to the many business owners and workers who make their living while the sun shines. For those drivers just trying to get from Point A to Point B, there’s relief at hand. The barricades marking the

  • A blow for Blue Hill

    When Northern Light Blue Hill Hospital last week announced plans to stop offering surgical services, it was a blow for the surrounding community. Surgery and surgical procedures such as colonoscopies are offerings most people would expect of a full-service hospital. Delivering babies is another, something Blue Hill stopped doing when it closed its obstetrics department

  • What tax relief?

    Moments after the early morning adjournment of the Maine Legislature’s first regular session the flurry of press releases from Governor Janet Mills and legislative membership landed in electronic mailboxes. The public statements deservedly trumpeted the tri-partisan achievement of enacting the state’s fiscal year 2020-2021 $8-billion budget on schedule. Included among the achievements listed in these

  • The good guys

    Law enforcement is not a job for the faint of heart. The hours are terrible, the risks are high and the clientele is frequently on its worst behavior. Showing up when something horrible happens is part of the job description and police bear witness to great tragedy. It’s a calling, and most people who are

  • Death with dignity

    Last week, the Governor signed the “Maine Death with Dignity Act” into law. The legislation, LD 1313, allows terminally ill adults with less than six months of life expectancy to end their lives with physician-prescribed medication. To qualify, a patient must be a Maine resident, terminal, deemed competent by two doctors and have voluntarily expressed

  • Town in turmoil

    It’s been a bumpy ride in Gouldsboro town government this spring. In the past two weeks, officials learned of errors in the posting of the Town Meeting warrant, prompting two emergency meetings and a scramble to reschedule Town Meeting and municipal elections; the police chief resigned and the town manager followed suit the next day.

  • Debt burdens future budgets

    Governor Janet Mills last week announced her 11th-hour proposal for the state of Maine to borrow $239 million to fund a package of initiatives intended to grow the economy and address challenges facing Maine. The Legislature is scheduled to adjourn on June 19, pressuring negotiators to quickly achieve consensus and sprint to deliver the constitutionally