Haadoow becomes city’s 13th candidate for mayor

The race for mayor has another candidate.

Hamza Haadoow, a Somali immigrant with deep community ties, announced Monday in a news release that he will seek the office this fall.

Haadoow, former owner of BNS Transportation and Jubba Halal Market, co-founded both the East Africa Family Association and Somali Community Development of Maine.

Candidates can’t start circulating petitions to get on the ballot until July 1. Once they register, however, they can set up candidate committees and raise funds.

The petitions require at least 300 signatures by Aug. 29.

Haadoow has scheduled a news conference for 10:30 a.m. today  at City Hall in the State of Maine Room.

He joins a list of 12 others who have already filled out candidate registration forms. They include Mayor Nick Mavodones, City Councilor Jill Duson, Eric Bennett, Zouhair Bouzara, Charles Bragdon, Michael Brennan, Markos Miller, Peter Bryant, Jodie Lapchick, City Councilor David Marshall, Jed Rathband and Christopher Vail.

Man free on bail as jail cannot meet dietary needs

A federal judge agreed Monday to allow a Durham man to be free on bail due to his health pending his sentencing on a drug conviction.

Seth Leaf Pruzansky suffers from intestinal Candidiasis, a type of yeast infection hat has caused problems including rashes, abdominal pain and intestinal bleeding, according to his lawyer, Richard Berne.

Pruzansky’s condition improved with a special diet that included supplements, Berne said, but has deteriorated because Cumberland County Jail is not able to meet his dietary needs.

Pruzansky, the founder of a health food business called Living Nutz, pleaded guilty this month to a  charge of conspiracy to distribute and possession with intent to distribute a mixture or substance containing marijuana. He faces between 10 and 30 years in prison.

Judge George Singal allowed Pruzansky to be free on $100,000 secured bond and ordered him to home detention and to submit to electronic monitoring. Pruzansky is scheduled to be sentenced Sept. 27.


Meetings will take public’s views on fishing regulations

Federal fishery regulators have scheduled 15 public meetings along the Eastern Seaboard to allow public input in the development of new regulations aimed to prevent whales from becoming entangled in fishing gear.

The National Marine Fisheries Service plans to have final rules in place in 2014 to protect right, humpback and finback whales from fishing lines that fall vertically through the water, such as those used for lobster traps, gill nets and other pot fisheries.

The first meeting is July 11 in East Machias, followed by other meetings in Maine in Ellsworth, Rockland and Portland.

Additional meetings are scheduled in July and August in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New Jersey, Delaware, Virginia, North Carolina, Georgia and Florida.


Nadeau appointed as new director of MaineCare

Maine’s Department of Health and Human Services has appointed a new director of MaineCare, the state’s Medicaid health insurance program.

Stefanie Nadeau, the new director, has been serving as acting director of the program since mid-February. She replaces Anthony Marple, who oversaw the $2.6 billion-a-year program for four years until he was fired in January by the new LePage administration.

A graduate of Thomas College, Nadeau has been with the state’s Office of MaineCare Services for seven years. Her experience includes program management, policy, operations and claims management. Nadeau was the director of program management and has been overseeing the move to a new claims management system, among other projects.

“Stefanie has provided strong leadership as the acting director,” said DHHS Commissioner Mary Mayhew in a written announcement. “We are very fortunate to have someone with this level of experience and a working knowledge of Medicaid’s complexities to lead the program.”

A Maine native, Nadeau lives in Farmingdale with her husband and two children.

Environmental groups give opinions of lawmakers’ work

A coalition of environmental groups said Monday they were both pleased and disappointed with actions taken in the first session of the 125th Maine Legislature.

During the State House news conference, Maine’s Environmental Priorities Coalition – which is composed of 26 groups – praised the bipartisan efforts of lawmakers that defeated several proposals they opposed.

But the group does have concerns about some recently passed measures, said Maureen Drouin, executive director of the Maine League of Conservation Voters.

“The reality is that some real harm to our water, land and wildlife did occur and people and businesses across the state will definitely feel the negative effects for months and years to come,” she said.

She cited the elimination of the pesticide notification registry, legislation weakening the uniform building and energy efficiency code and the impending fate of the Land Use Regulation Commission, which oversees regulation of more than 10 million acres of Maine land.


Forum seeks public input on proposed Downeaster facility

A public forum on a proposed Downeaster train maintenance and layover facility will be held at 7 p.m.
on Thursday in the Town Council chambers at Maine Street Station, 16 Station Ave.

The meeting will be hosted by representatives of the Northern New England Passenger Rail Authority and the Maine Department of Transportation.

State Sen. Stan Gerzofsky, D-Brunswick, organized the meeting to address noise concerns and other issues raised by constituents who live near the proposed 40,000-square-foot train facility.

“I have heard from many residents who would be directly affected by this project,” Gerzofsky said in a news release. “I believe it is imperative that they are involved in this process.”

Started in 2001, the Downeaster stops in Old Orchard Beach (seasonally), Saco and Wells; Dover, Durham and Exeter, N.H.; and Haverhill, Woburn and Boston, Mass.

The rail authority is working to extend service to Freeport and Brunswick by late 2012.


Franklin woman faces prison for burning forfeited house

A 26-year-old Franklin woman is going to prison for two years for burning down a house co-owned by her mother that had been forfeited to the federal government.

Cecelia Nicole Sanborn, of Franklin, was sentenced Monday in U.S. District Court in Bangor. She also was ordered to pay restitution of $139,700.

According to court records, the U.S. District Court in 2006 ordered a residence and a parcel of land in Sorrento be forfeited after Sanborn’s mother and a man she was living with were convicted of drug trafficking.

Two days after her mother’s conviction, Sanborn climbed into the house, sprayed lighter fluid and started a fire.

She pleaded guilty in March of last year to causing damage to federal property of over $1,000.


Store owner charged after police find 21 pounds of pot

A Waldoboro man was in jail Monday pending charges of drug trafficking after police found 21 pounds of marijuana, worth $42,000, in his car.

Agents with the Maine Drug Enforcement Agency and other police agencies had been watching Christopher Luce, 24, owner of The Shoe Box, a combination shoe store and head shop that sells drug paraphernalia.

Police say they learned that Luce was expected to have a large amount of pot and they approached his sport utility vehicle on Thursday as it was parked at a convenience store in Union. Police say Luce avoided arrest by running into the woods.

Luce turned himself in Monday and is being held in Knox County Jail pending an initial court appearance later this week.


Voters approve $300,000 for legal fees in beach dispute

Voters want to continue paying for the legal fight over Goose Rocks Beach.

They approved a warrant item at Saturday’s town meeting that would provide $300,000 for the litigation.

Last year, voters approved $250,000 for the case and the town spent about $150,000 the previous year.

The plaintiffs, a group of beachfront property owners, sued the town in October 2009. They argue that the town is violating their property rights by allowing the public to use areas that are privately owned.

The town maintains the entire length of the 2-mile beach is public, from the low-water mark to the dry sand above the high-water mark.


Voters approve $13.8 million budget with no tax increase

Residents at Saturday’s town meeting approved the $13.8 million municipal budget as recommended by the Town Council.

Forty-seven people attended the meeting, which began at 9 a.m. and ended 24 minutes later, said Windham Town Clerk Linda Morrell.

The budget will result in no tax increase for residents.


Grant of $5,000 will fund increased OUI checkpoints

Police will be cracking down on impaired drivers this summer, thanks to a grant from the Maine Bureau of Highway Safety.

The Westbrook Police Department received $5,000 to pay officers to patrol the city in search of people driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, said Capt. Tom Roth.

Police will be stopping drivers at sobriety checkpoints and conducting roving patrols throughout the city, Roth said.


Man, 34, arrested after 3 a.m. stabbing at city apartment

A Lewiston man is in serious condition and another is facing charges following an early-morning stabbing in a Lewiston apartment.

Officials say 22-year-old Richard Edwards is in serious condition at the Central Maine Medical Center after he was stabbed about 2 a.m. Sunday.

Lewiston police say Rai’kuez Melchiorre, 34, of Portland is facing a charge of aggravated assault. Melchiorre was treated for a cut before being taken to jail.

WMTW-TV said the stabbing took place in a College Street apartment. Police did not say what sparked the incident.


Charity bike trek collects $1.8 million in contributions

The American Lung Association of Maine’s annual three-day, 180-mile bike ride has brought in some $1.8 million in contributions.

More than 1,900 riders took part in the 27th annual Trek Across Maine, which began Friday at the Sunday River ski resort in Newry and ended Sunday in Belfast. Organizers say last year’s event raised $1.75 million.


Celtics’ Glen Davis adds a new skill: lobster hauling

Boston Celtics forward “Big Baby” Glen Davis can now say he’s hauled lobster traps off the Maine coast.

Davis spent part of Saturday on a boat pulling traps off Bath before devouring two lobsters, steamed clams, swordfish, hamburgers and other offerings at a lobster bake for a promotion for a local lobster company, GetMaineLobster.com.

Davis said on Twitter: “I have a different respect for catching lobster. It was hard.”