Public has 30 days to give opinions of casino question

The public now has a chance to comment on the wording of the question on the Nov. 2 ballot proposing a casino in Oxford County.

Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap said the public will have 30 days to comment on the proposed wording of the ballot question.

The proposed question says: “Do you want to allow casino gambling in Maine at a single site in Oxford County, subject to local approval, with part of the profits going to specific state, local and tribal programs?”

Written public comments on the proposed question may be filed with the secretary of state by e-mail at [email protected]


Maine agrees to settlement over drug’s promotion

Maine is joining other states and the federal government in reaching a $520 million settlement with the pharmaceutical manufacturer AstraZeneca, resolving allegations surrounding the company’s promotion of the anti-psychotic drug Seroquel.

The case involves AstraZeneca promoting Seroquel for uses that are not approved by federal drug regulators, including insomnia and psychiatric conditions besides schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder announced Tuesday that the federal government has reached a settlement with the company.

Maine Attorney General Janet T. Mills said the state will receive over $1.2 million in restitution and additional recoveries.


Pills seized, woman held after parking-lot arrest

Police arrested a Westbrook woman who they say was trafficking in prescription drugs, including pills that were prescribed for her 4-year-old child.

Westbrook police Capt. Tom Roth said Margaret F. Stosny, 35, of 3 River St. was arrested in the parking lot near the Kohl’s department store around 6 p.m. Wednesday.

Roth said a large number of pills were seized, along with a small amount of marijuana and Stosny’s vehicle.

Stosny was being held Wednesday night in the Cumberland County Jail on $2,000 cash bail.

The investigation was led by Westbrook’s drug investigator along with officers from the Maine Drug Enforcement Agency.


Reality TV star looking forward to theater role

Carson Kressley from TV’s “Queer Eye for the Straight Guy” will be on stage this summer at the Ogunquit Playhouse.

Kressley, who will play The Man in the Chair in “The Drowsy Chaperone,” said he is looking forward to spending a relaxing summer on the Maine coast. He told Portland Magazine that the first thing he plans to do is have a “big, fat martini and meet some of the locals.”

Kressley said this is his biggest role in theater and he looks forward to playing a character after playing himself on reality TV.


South Berwick man indicted in hit-and-run fatality

A South Berwick man was indicted Wednesday in the hit-and-run death of a University of Maine student on Jan. 30.

Garrett Cheney, 22, is charged with manslaughter, aggravated drunken driving and leaving the scene of the accident. He is scheduled to be arraigned on May 20.

Cheney, accompanied by his attorney, William T. Bly of Biddeford, surrendered on April 16 at the Orono police station.

“Garrett maintains his innocence,” Bly told the Bangor Daily News. “It will be interesting to see what hard physical evidence they have. You can be sure that it will be vigorously challenged.”

Cheney allegedly hit and killed Jordyn Bakley, 20, of Camden about 3 a.m. Jan. 30 in front of 15 Middle St. in Orono, near her apartment. He was driving on the wrong side of the street, according to court documents.

According to an affidavit filed at the time of his arrest, Cheney was visiting a cousin in Orono on Jan. 29 to celebrate the younger man’s 21st birthday. After Bakley was hit, Cheney drove south on Interstate 95. His 2003 Chevy Silverado went off the highway about 3:30 a.m. in Etna.

Cheney was not injured but was charged with drunken driving.


Two free walks planned to explain arboretum project

The group that is leading the effort to create an arboretum at Fort Williams Park plans two informational site walks.

The first walk organized by the Fort Williams Steering Committee will be held Wednesday and the second will be held on May 16. Each walk will begin at the picnic shelter on the bluff overlooking Portland Head Light. The Wednesday walk will begin at at 6:15 p.m., and the Sunday walk at 2 p.m.

The walks aim to educate about invasive plants in the park and the role of the proposed arboretum. Richard Churchill, a horticulturist and arborist, will lead the walks.

The concept calls for 15 planting sites, including a demonstration site, on walkways around the park. Work on the demonstration site is expected to begin this year.


Forum tonight aims to find help for city’s small parks

The city will hold its first parks forum tonight. “Green Space Gathering” is an initiative of the Portland Parks Commission, which is looking to the public for help in maintaining small parks.

City Manager Joe Gray’s proposed budget calls for a reduction in park maintenance for the city’s smaller open spaces, such as Harbor View Park, Peppermint Park, Baxter Woods and Riverton Park, as well as flower plantings in the beds throughout the city.

Tonight, representatives from the Friends of Deering Oaks, Friends of Eastern Promenade, the Land Bank Commission, Spirits Alive, Compass Project, Peaks Island Community Garden, and Portland Trails will talk about their organizations and answer questions.

The meeting will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Ocean Gateway Terminal.


Mainers can help state plan for environmental literacy

Four meetings will give the public a chance to participate in an environmental literacy plan for Maine schools.

The meetings held by Maine Audubon, the Departments of Education and Conservation and the Maine Environmental Education Association will give Mainers a chance to weigh in on an environmental literacy plan aimed at helping Maine share in millions of federal dollars to support environmental literacy in classrooms.

The meetings are scheduled from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Wednesday at Gilsland Farm Audubon Center in Falmouth; 5:30 to 7 p.m. on May 6 at the Olsen Student Center at the University of Maine at Farmington; 5:30 to 7 p.m. on May 10 at Fields Pond Audubon Center in Holden; and 4 to 5:30 p.m. on May 11 at Houlton High School.

For more information, go to


SAD 57 educators agree to tax-reducing measures

Recent measures taken by the Regional School Unit 57 board and the Massabesic Education Association to reduce the 2010-11 budget will lower tax rates for the district’s member towns of Alfred, Lyman, Limerick, Newfield, Shapleigh and Waterboro.

Educators have agreed to take three furlough days and forgo pay raises for the next year. They also have agreed to a 15 percent decrease in stipends they are paid for sports and co-curricular activities and a reduction in the number of district-paid courses they may take. Those changes will pare $303,668 from the school budget.

— From staff and news services


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