March 25, 2013

Dispatches

(Continued from page 1)

The building was supposed to be empty, but it held an 18-foot fiberglass boat that was destroyed in the fire, Davis said.

Oakland Fire Chief Dave Coughlin said the boat’s registration was not valid, and its owner has yet to be identified.

AURORA

Regulators seeking views on proposed wind project

Maine environmental regulators will hear what the public has to say this week about a proposed 18-turbine wind farm in Hancock County.

The Department of Environmental Protection will hold a public meeting Thursday on First Wind’s Hancock Wind proposal. Several DEP representatives and noise and visual consultants who were involved with the agency’s review will attend.

First Wind wants to begin construction this year on the 54-megawatt power-generation facility on Schoppe Ridge and an unnamed ridge, with an operations and maintenance building in Aurora. In addition to the 512-foot-tall turbines, the project includes two 344-foot-tall meteorological towers.

Power from the facility would flow to an expanded substation at the company’s nearby 19-turbine Bull Hill Wind Project in Eastbrook.

FARMINGTON

In plea deal, man admits to burglaries on ski mountains

A 23-year-old Maine man faces sentencing after pleading guilty to felony burglary and theft for break-ins at two Maine ski mountains.

Ronald Davis II, of Livermore Falls, entered his plea Friday for thefts at Titcomb Mountain in Farmington and Spruce Mountain Ski Slope in Jay.

The Sun Journal newspaper said Davis admitted to stealing $670 in cash and portable radios from Titcomb Mountain in March 2012, and to taking radios from Spruce Mountain in November 2012, as well as driving a municipal bulldozer up the slopes to the top of the mountain.

Sentencing is scheduled for April, with a plea agreement calling for Davis to spend six months in jail followed by two years of probation.

PORTLAND

Three hearings scheduled on eel fishery regulations

Regulators have scheduled hearings in Maine and other East Coast states to gather public comment on proposed regulations for the American eel fishery.

The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission says three hearings will be held next month in Maine, where fishermen each spring catch baby eels known as elvers as they swim up rivers. The fishery last year was worth $38 million, with fishermen averaging $2,000 a pound.

The proposed regulations are the result of a stock assessment that concluded the American eel population is technically depleted, probably because of a combination of overfishing, habitat loss, predation, environmental changes, disease, turbine mortality, and toxins and contaminants.

The regulations would apply to glass, yellow and silver eels, which are all the same eel but at different life stages.

BUCKFIELD

Sen. Collins to visit producer of White House Easter Eggs

Sen. Susan Collins is planning a visit to the Maine company that supplies wooden keepsake Easter eggs featured at the annual White House Easter Egg Roll.

Wells Wood Turning & Finishing Inc., a wood products company in the central Maine town of Buckfield, is manufacturing the eggs for the seventh straight year.

The eggs will be included in gift bags that are given to children at the April 1 Easter Egg Roll on the White House lawn. The National Park Service also sells the eggs as collectibles for $7.99 each or a five-pack that includes one egg of each color plus a special-edition egg.

Collins says she’ll meet with employees when she visits the company Monday.

AUGUSTA

Panel wants to hear views on work force ‘skills gap’

A state panel that’s on a mission to close Maine’s so-called skills gap will hold a listening session and tour Monday in Belfast.

The activities by the Committee on Maine’s Workforce and Economic Future will focus on the state’s economic hubs, including Main Streets and downtowns.

A tour of Belfast’s Front Street Shipyard is scheduled to begin at 11 a.m., and that will be followed by a panel discussion and public hearing.

The bipartisan committee is similar to a special panel that Republicans assembled after they won legislative majorities two years ago. That panel focused on cutting red tape in government regulations.

ROCKPORT

Yarmouth, Bangor students win drama festival honors

High school theater companies from Bangor and Yarmouth took top honors at the Maine Drama Festival over the weekend.

Bangor won the Class A competition, held at Camden Hills Regional High School in Rockport, and Yarmouth won in Class B at the competition in Freeport.

The Top Five finishers in each class, listed from first to fifth:Class A: Bangor, Oceanside, Falmouth, Westbrook, Belfast. Class B: Yarmouth, Hermon, Mount Desert, Fort Kent and Waynflete (tie).

– From staff and news services

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