Compiled by Staff Writer Peggy Roberts, the 2005 Year in Review recaps the last year of news events in the Lakes Region. This week’s entries wrap up the second half of the year. Check last week’s newspaper for the January through June’s items. We wish you a safe and happy new year, and, as always, thank you for reading the Lakes Region Suburban Weekly.

July 1

• In a stunning move, the SAD 6 Board of Directors voted to cut the fiscal year 2005/2006 school budget by a single dollar. The Board was required to revisit the budget because Article Four of the district referendum was defeated in the June 14 election.

• The Raymond school support staff signed their first contract with the town in June. After almost two years of negotiations, the Raymond Support Staff Association, a union consisting of hourly employees, reached an agreement on a three-year contract, retroactive to July, 2004.

July 8

• Peter and Carolyn Biegel, of 141 Ossipee Trail, filed an appeal against the town of Standish, Pit Stop Fuels, Inc. and its owner, Standish resident Dana Lampron. The appeal challenged the decision made at the June 6 planning board meeting approving Lampron’s site plan application for a convenience store, gasoline filling station and office to be located at 125 Ossipee Trail.

• Naples residents approved the municipal budget, set at $3.03 million, at their annual town meeting as well as all-but-one article out of the 58 on the warrant. The failed article would have added plowing, sanding and clearing of snow on sidewalks along Route 302 during the winter season.

July 15

• Detectives from the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office continued their hunt for a middle-aged man who raped a Sebago female at knifepoint. According to authorities, the assailant came out of the woods behind the victim’s house, jumped up onto the rear deck, held a knife to her throat and attacked her. The man was never found.

• After several years of efforts to control milfoil populations at Little Sebago Lake, the Little Sebago Lake Association began suction dredging to remove the non-native plant.

July 22

• John and Joann Queenan of Hooksett, N.H., wrote a letter to Saint Joseph’s College requesting that Luke Chouinard not be allowed to return as a student. Two years before, Chouinard lost control of his car and crashed on Route 114 in Naples while carrying the Queenan’s son, John, and another passenger. Their son died the next day from his injuries. St. Joe’s allowed Chouinard to return.

July 29

• Two deaths in the same area of Sebago Lake occurred within hours of each other. John B. D’Arcangelo, 73, suffered a heart attack after falling into the lake from the personal watercraft he was riding with two others. Hours later, Scott Meagher, 36, of Whitman, Mass., was driving a personal watercraft at an excessive rate of speed and collided with a boat.

August 5

• The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission issued their Draft Environmental Assessment for S.D. Warren’s Eel Weir Hydroelectric Project, producing mixed reactions from area residents. The assessment is an important step toward relicensing of the dam.

• The Little Falls Wastewater Treatment Facility was scheduled to be closed if the existing sewer network was expanded through Gorham to connect with the Westbrook Regional Treatment Facility. The Little Falls facility was near capacity and could be overtaxed by heavy rainfall and other increases to the flow.

August 12

• After heated debate, the Windham Town Council decided to postpone setting the tax rate until a school surplus of over $1 million was explained. The surplus raised eyebrows of councilors and citizens alike.

• Friends of Sebago Lake came out strongly against federal recommendations that they said would negatively affect lake level management on Sebago Lake. They planned to voice their objections at a meeting scheduled by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s public meeting.

August 19

• Two trees in Raymond next to the Mill Street Bridge, one of which held a popular rope swing, were cut down. Because of increased complaints over dangerous and inappropriate behavior, including swinging over the guardrail into traffic and teens accosting cars, Raymond selectmen voted to cut down the trees.

• Casco Town Office employees settled into their new home off Route 121 after a mold problem, discovered in January, forced them out of the original building. The new building will later be used for storage.

August 26

• Standish residents packed Council Chambers for a public hearing on Standish’s rangeways. Many were present after receiving notification letters as abutters to these paper roads. After many emotional property owners spoke, Councilor Terence Christy stressed the need to manage traffic, possibly through the use of some of these roads, as well as to preserve the character of the village.

• Local seniors began moving into Unity Gardens, the new senior housing complex in Windham. Built by Avesta, the 48-unit complex offers its new residents community rooms, a library and an outdoor garden space in addition to reasonably priced apartments.

September 2

• As a result of Hurricane Katrina, there were those who fled to family in Maine, such as Kurtis Clements and his wife Ann Bragdon and their family. Ruby Lee of Naples went south with the Red Cross to help out.

• With higher gas prices, some area stations experienced a greater number of drive-offs. Though different stations have different guidelines, some would-be customers have managed to drive off without paying because prepayment is not required.

September 9

• The Maine Correctional Center, off Mallison Falls Road in South Windham, struggled to contain its inmate crowding situation. The prison was holding over 600 inmates, 150 more than its capacity, and doubling up on cells.

• Derrick Coffin, 23, of Lewiston, was arrested for allegedly forcing his way into a Raymond home and attempting to sexually assault a 10-year-old boy. According to the Sheriff’s office, Coffin was dressed only in a makeshift mask when he pushed in the door. The boy’s 14-year-old sister heard the disturbance and scared the intruder away.

September 16

• In the weeks following Katrina, many Lakes Region residents responded by raising money or traveling south to assist those in need. Three Sebago volunteer firefighters headed to Louisiana with the Red Cross. And three members of the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office also headed to Louisiana. Their job was to help local law enforcement by distributing food and supplies and keeping order in the region.

September 23

• After two years of construction, work was completed on the Windham corridor of Route 302 below the rotary. The road was rebuilt and repaved, making for a more pleasant commute for area drivers.

September 30

• Because of the state’s $1 increase in cigarette taxes, instead of kicking the habit, many area smokers looked to cheaper alternatives, like mini-cigars.

• More than 100 people attended the Second Great American Tea Party at the Windham Veteran’s Center. Organized by the Citizen’s Alliance of Maine, the event was held to protest rising property taxes and “out of control” government spending in the state.

• The Maine Department of Education released the 2005 Maine Educational Assessment scores, used to determine each school’s progress in accordance with the federal No Child Left Behind Act. Although most Lakes Region schools met the standards in most areas, there were a few on Monitor Status or labeled Continuous Improvement Priority schools because scores did not meet the standards for Adequate Yearly Progress.

October 7

• Windham began its first full property revaluation in eight years. In accordance with state law, property evaluations for tax purposes must be within 70 percent of fair market value.

• Convicted kidnapper Norman Dickinson was released from prison and moved temporarily to a trailer on the grounds of the Maine Correctional Center in Windham. Since then, Dickinson has been shuffled to several southern Maine towns.

October 14

• In an effort to improve safety aboard passenger-carrying freshwater vessels, Rep. John Robinson, R-Raymond, organized a meeting with several state agencies to try to enact an inspection procedure on freshwater boats for hire.

• On a boat tour of the Presumpscot River, the Presumpscot River Watershed Coalition discussed the river’s history and what has been done to improve the river habitat. The coalition is made up of local environmental groups who have partnered with towns and state agencies to revive the river.

October 21

• Portland and South Portland police continued a week-long search for Windham native Lynn Moran, age 24, in a case that gained regional attention. Moran was in Maine visiting her family for the Columbus Day weekend and was last seen near the Casco Bay Bridge in South Portland.

• Windham’s Town Council began discussions on creating a community park centered around the skate park next to the public safety building on Route 202. The park would feature a picnic area, playground, basketball court, BMX bicycle track, community garden and walking path.

October 28

• South Windham residents spoke out against area vandalism, citing fires set in the street, houses being egged and other mischievous acts in the area of Main, Depot and Mechanics streets and the Keddy Mill. The vandalism is a source of concern for both Avesta Housing and the Village at Little Falls, two developments scheduled for the area.

• Voters at Frye Island’s Annual Town Meeting unanimously approved a symbolic article that would reduce their share of funding to SAD 6. If the measure were enacted, the town’s financial responsibility to the district would be less than half of their current contribution – from $736,000 to $300,000.

November 4

• A three-week search for Windham native Lynn Moran, age 24, ended with the discovery of her body floating in the water near the Maine State Pier in Portland. The state medical examiner determined the cause of her death to be accidental drowning.

• A visit by Gov. John Baldacci wrapped up Bonny Eagle High School’s two-week distinguished speakers series, hosted by David Ezhaya’s government class. State Sen. Bill Diamond scheduled the event, which included Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap, Attorney General Steve Rowe, and Republican gubernatorial candidate Peter Mills.

November 11

• Although Lakes Region voters bucked the majority on Question 1 at the polls, Maine voters overall struck down a People’s Veto to overturn a new law aimed at protecting people of differing sexual orientations from discrimination.

• Locally, voters in SAD 6 voted decisively to authorize the installation of a sprinkler system in Bonny Eagle High School. All five towns in the District approved the referendum that would float bonds for the $500,000 needed to outfit the entire school with the sprinklers.

November 18

• The town of Casco rescue worker charged with raping a Casco woman was free on $10,000 bail. Scott Mondor allegedly attacked the woman after responding to emergency calls involving her daughter at her home on the two days previous to the incident.

• The Windham School Board met with town officials to discuss what to do with more than $1 million in school surplus. The surplus was discovered in the summer when the books were closed on the 2004-2005 fiscal year.

• Area schools warned parents of the dangers of myspace.com, an Internet community immensely popular with teenagers locally and nationwide. Many teens post true personal information, as well as provocative pictures and casual comments about sex, drugs and alcohol on the site, the fifth-ranking Web site on the Internet.

November 25

• The Bonny Eagle Scots won their second consecutive state Class A football championship by defeating the Mt. Blue Cougars 41-13.

• A Cumberland County Superior Court judge sided with the Portland Water District determining that the town of Standish has no right to land adjacent to the Standish Boat Launch. Although the town owned the boat launch, it was ruled that the district owned the land that serves as the parking lot for the launch.

• The Standish Town Council voted to enter into a purchase and sales agreement to buy land for a community center. The town committed to $20,000 as non-refundable earnest money to buy the $325,000, eight-acre parcel located at 270 Northeast Road.

December 2

• Just weeks after its dedication, vandals attacked the Veterans Memorial Park at the Windham Veterans Center. They hacked down two newly planted maple trees in the park, a third tree on the border and cut off the top of a young pine tree near the entrance.

• Connecticut police arrested Camp Sunshine councilor Michael Newton, 58, of Rochester, N.H., for sexually assaulting a 17-year-old girl, who was a fellow councilor. The two were traveling together to visit mutual friends in New York. Newton was charged with second-degree sexual assault for the incident, which allegedly took place at a Super 8 motel in Cromwell, Conn.

• The Standish Town Council authorized the town’s attorney to appeal to the Maine Supreme Court the lower court’s recent decision that the town could not take Portland Water District land by prescriptive rights.

December 9

• Concerns grew over Sebago Heights, a 91-lot development awaiting approval from Windham’s Planning Board. The 175-acre site, located off Pipeline Road in Windham, would create a new neighborhood next to the Raymond border. The project was okayed unanimously by the board.

• A fatal accident on River Road in Windham claimed the life of 89-year-old Winfred Strout. The Windham resident was crossing the road on foot after selling Christmas trees for the Windham Kiwanis Club.

• About 20 Raymond property owners gathered at Raymond’s Public Safety Building to voice concerns over the recent revaluation. Most of those attending owned waterfront property, hardest hit by Vision Appraisal Technology’s revaluation.

December 16

• The town of Standish received a letter from the Portland Water District ordering it to stop maintaining the Standish Boat Launch parking lot immediately. The new policy also demanded the town move Northeast Road Ext. back into the undisputed 99-foot right-of-way by Feb. 1.

• The Windham Planning Board granted final approval to Sebago Heights, the 91-house development to be located off Pipeline Road. The decision went forward on the largest housing development in Windham’s history despite traffic and public safety concerns.

• The town of Frye Island filed a lawsuit in Cumberland County Superior Court against the State of Maine claiming the state legislature violated the town’s rights under the constitution on two separate occasions: enacting LD 500 in 2001 and inserting D-69 into LD1 in 2005. If successful, the island will reduce its payments to SAD 6 by more than 50 percent.

December 23

• Two new police recruits joined the Windham Police Department shortly after their police academy graduation.

December 30

• A Portland man was arrested after a foiled burglary in Scarborough. Police believe Shawn Tarr, 29, was also the car thief who eluded police in a manhunt near the Windham/Westbrook border in November. He was apprehended when the stolen vehicle he was driving got stuck in an icy driveway of the house he had allegedly robbed.

• Prompted by a letter from a Boy Scout and following Win Strout’s death on River Road, the town of Windham has requested the Maine Department of Transportation to review current speed limits on the state road that connects Windham to Westbrook.


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