1:54 p.m.

PORTLAND — A couple dozen protesters left Monument Square around 1:30 p.m. today to march to USM. 

The group chanted, “We got sold out. Banks got bailed out,” as they marched down the sidewalk along Congress Street. Near the Maine College of Art, the group started shouting, “Give to the poor, tax the rich.”

As they marched, people stopped on the sidewalk to let them pass and cars driving by honked in support. 

A small group of protesters stayed behind in Monument Square guarding the group’s belongings, which included suitcases and bags, as well as food, water and more signs. 

10:48 a.m.

PORTLAND — Protesters who call themselves OccupyMaine were ordered to remove their tent from Monument Square this morning.

The group set up in the square on Saturday as an off-shoot of Occupy Wall Street protesters who began demonstrations last month in New York City.

“The police asked us to take the structure down,” John McKibben said.

McKibben, a Vermont resident, came to Portland to help the Maine group organize. Wearing a red shirt with the words “Affordable Housing Now!!” in white lettering, he said the group moved the tent earlier this morning from space in front of Spartan Grill closer to the monument. 

In order to have the tent as part of the protest, the group would need a permit. McKibben contends the permit was too costly for the group to obtain. 

“A permit is so hard to get. Only a company with those financial resources can,” he said.

Lawn chairs, boxes of food and numerous gallon jugs of water were indicative of the group’s intentions to occupy the space indefinitely. Four Portland police officers stood nearby as six protesters disassembled the tent.

By about 12:30 p.m. about a dozen people had gathered in the square for the group’s “general assembly” to discuss a plan of action for the week.

One woman was carrying a sign that read “I am a single mom, student loan debt = 2x my salary. I am the 99%” – a reference to a statement on the website of Occupy Wall Street, which says, “The one thing we all have in common is that we are the 99 percent that will no longer tolerate the greed and corruption of the 1 percent.”

The group planned to march to the University of Southern Maine’s Portland campus around 1:30 p.m.