News from December 26, 2013

December 26, 2013

Russia: Arafat's death not caused by radiation



December 27, 2013

Obama praises steps toward closing prison at Guantanamo Bay

But in a statement after signing the National Defense Authorization Act for 2014, he says the actions lack the flexibility he would need to complete the process.

December 26, 2013

Suit filed against real-estate magnates in Empire State Building IPO

An investor says stakeholders lost more than $400 million when the tower’s managing owners refused cash deals and did the public offering.

December 27, 2013

Family disputes claims in new biography of Norman Rockwell

The author discerns ‘enormous homoeroticism’ in his work and suggests that asking little boys to pose for an illustration would be problematic today.

December 27, 2013

Maine man angry over zoning adds to toilets outside home

David Labbe now displays 28 toilets on a strip of land behind his home, his protest over a city decision that prevented him from selling his property for development as a Dunkin’ Donuts.

December 26, 2013

Boston’s Logan airport sets passenger record in 2013

Massport ‘s website indicates that domestic travel accounted for most of the passenger growth during the year.

December 26, 2013

Obama’s reversal on health insurance cancellations draws mixed response

Older policies are being allowed to continue in 36 states, while some insurance companies choose to discontinue the old policies that don’t comply with the new federal mandates.

December 26, 2013

N.H. finishes 2013 with $72M budget surplus

Democratic Gov. Maggie Hassan praises the legislature for working across party lines to pass a responsible, $10.7 billion budget.

December 26, 2013

Companies try to temper nasty online comments

Some sites employ moderators while others, including Popular Science, say enough is enough and ban comments altogether.

December 27, 2013

Gift of life outweighs Christmas Eve setbacks for Freeport couple

Richard Peacock says he’s thankful to be alive after suffering a heart attack while narrowly escaping a fire.

December 26, 2013

Obama signs bipartisan budget, defense deals

The budget prevents another government shutdown for nearly two more years.

December 26, 2013

LeBron James wins AP’s Male Athlete of the Year

The Miami Heat star receives 31 of 96 votes cast in a poll of news organizations, beating Peyton Manning (20) and Jimmie Johnson (7).

December 26, 2013

Maine troop greeter featured in documentary dies at 91

Bill Knight was one of the volunteers who spoke to soldiers as they deployed and arrived at Bangor International Airport.

December 27, 2013

Carelessly disposed ashes caused Waterville blaze Several photos included in this story

Fires like the one that destroyed the Waterville garage are a hazard of the home-heating season.

December 27, 2013

Collins, King seek study of Agent Orange link to ill veterans

They want to know if Mainers and others who trained at a base in Canada were affected by the toxic defoliant there.

December 26, 2013

Crash on Maine Turnpike cleared as snow moves in

A rollover between the Wells and York exits blocked a lane in each direction for part of the afternoon.

December 26, 2013

Maine couple overcome by carbon monoxide show some improvement

Authorities advise that generators should never be used inside a home, basement or garage or outside near an open window.

December 26, 2013

Amazon refunds shipping, offers gift cards after UPS misses Christmas deliveries

The delivery service cited overwhelming volume for its inability to get all packages to customers before the holiday.

December 26, 2013

Bus passenger charged with breaking into Bangor bus depot

Riders had been stranded in the cold outside a depot on Christmas Day.

December 27, 2013

Some Mainers could be without power until 2014

As thousands regain electricity, crews face harsh conditions and extensive damage in areas hit hardest by the ice storm.

December 27, 2013

Vermont orchestra offers creative outlet for mentally ill

South Burlington’s Me2/orchestra bills itself as 'the world’s only classical music organization for individuals with mental illness and the people who support them.'

December 26, 2013

NH firefighter finds his own daughter at fatal crash scene

Thirty-year-old Katie Hamilton of Brookline was killed in the accident around 9 a.m. Christmas Eve.

December 26, 2013

Health care tactics split GOP Senate rivals

Some midterm-election candidates support fixing the new law, others want it repealed.

December 26, 2013

String of Palestinian attacks has Israel jittery

Leaders say ‘rogue nature’ of latest violence makes response difficult

December 26, 2013

Poll: Americans hopeful for a better year in 2014

Other subjects surveyed include news stories, New Year’s Eve plans and pop culture.

December 26, 2013

Nearly half of Greenpeace activists will be allowed to leave Russia

Greenpeace said other foreign members of the crew were expected to get their exit visas on Friday.

December 26, 2013

Providence planning bike share

The Rhode Island city aims to start with 20 stations and 200 bicycles before expanding to 40 stations.

December 26, 2013

Vermont students offer healthy food program

Middlebury College students are providing ‘supermarket-quality food at fast-food prices.’

December 26, 2013

Will Mainers fly to co-op for health insurance?

That’s the question, as the fledgling nonprofit takes on a mountain of debt to be only the second provider in our marketplace.

December 26, 2013

Fundraising movie will feature soldier who lost arms, legs

Travis Mills, who plans to move to Manchester, hopes to attend a Jan. 16 screening in Augusta.

December 26, 2013

Gay marriage picks up steam in courts, states

With 18 states now in the same-sex corner, pressure is on the Supreme Court to settle the issue for good.

December 26, 2013

Maine DHHS denies bid to make marijuana legal for Tourette’s

Advocates say they will keep trying for approval after an Ellsworth man’s request to make the syndrome a qualifying condition is rejected with no explanation.

December 26, 2013

Brunswick town manager to resign

Gary Brown will leave in March 2014, but he and the town council have not said why.

December 26, 2013

Vermont organ restorer pulls out all the stops

Pipe organs rejuvenated by A. David Moore grace churches, concert halls even some homes.

December 26, 2013

Massachusetts veterans court aims at reform

It's part of a movement to give veterans special help in the legal system.

December 26, 2013

Maine woman still fighting back after vicious attack Several photos included in this story

Kayleigh Ballantyne of Gorham talks about her ordeal in South Boston and her recovery in the months since.

December 26, 2013

Killer at center of Vermont DNA plea dies in prison

While he went free for 14 years, the parents of his victim worked to establish the database that finally identified him.

December 26, 2013

Santa’s sleigh delayed after snags at UPS, FedEx

The package delivery companies blame weather and volume for slowdowns that left some homes short on gifts on Christmas.

December 26, 2013

Maine rink masters work winter backyard magic

They pour time, money and passion into the pursuit of creating the perfect skating place.

December 26, 2013

Lawmakers plan to keep close watch on Maine DEP

They'll work to tighten oversight of the department after the Press Herald uncovered failures, but don't expect to investigate its commissioner.