GORHAM

Police think same man committed three robberies

Gorham police are investigating another robbery, the third since Thursday night.

Sunday night’s robbery took place at Domino’s Pizza, 633 Main St., according to Sgt. Dana Thompson.

Thompson said the robberies appear to have been committed by the same individual, who in each case escaped with a small amount of cash. To date, no one has been injured. The suspect displayed a gun in the first robbery and implied he had a weapon in the subsequent robberies.

“We would love any help we could get from the public before something tragic happens,” Thompson said.

The first robbery took place Thursday night at the U.S. Cellular Store at 102 Main St. On Saturday night, the Olympia Sports store at 108 Main St. was robbed. All three robberies occurred between 6:30 p.m. and 9 p.m.

Thompson said the suspect is a white male, about 5 feet 9 inches tall, with brown eyes and brown hair. Anyone with information about the crimes should contact Gorham police at 222-1660.

AUGUSTA

Michaud offers bill to help students manage debt

Democratic U.S. Rep. Mike Michaud says Maine ranks second highest in the nation for the average amount of debt — nearly $30,000 — carried by each graduating student.

Michaud says the $29,983 average debt in Maine is topped only by New Hampshire, at $31,048. Vermont graduates are also among those with the biggest average debt loads, at $28,391.

The figures are from a report called Student Debt and the Class of 2010, an initiative of the independent, nonprofit Institute for College Access and Success.

In response, Michaud introduced a bill called the Student Loan Default Prevention Act, which would allow the Finance Authority of Maine to provide guidance to more than 20,000 Maine students annually on their federal loan portfolio. State-based agencies like FAME are precluded from working with students on new federal loans.

LePage blames Democrats for needed Medicaid cuts

Gov. Paul LePage says he knew his plan to cut Medicaid would be tough to share with Mainers. But he says that decision was necessary.

In his weekly radio address, Le-Page blames Democrats for making Medicaid the answer for affordable health insurance. He says that solution was shortsighted, hurt people who need insurance coverage the most, forced all Mainers to pay for much costlier insurance premiums and increased taxes.

LePage says Medicaid spending has increased by $1 billion in the last decade, straining the state budget. His solution would bring Maine more in line with other states.

Democrats say cutting common-sense safeguards won’t reduce or eliminate the need. Sen. Seth Goodall of Richmond says LePage’s proposed cuts will cost more because people will either go untreated or seek costly emergency room care.

GREENWOOD

Mount Abram starts heating with wood pellet boiler

Mount Abram is going all green to heat its ski lodge.

The western Maine ski resort is using locally produced wood pellets, and no fossil fuels, to warm up the base lodge.

The ski area has taken delivery of a wood pellet boiler that will heat the 5,500-square-foot lodge using wood pellets delivered from a local distribution center.

It means Mount Abram will no longer require 12,000 gallons of No. 2 heating oil per year to heat the lodge.

Mount Abram says the new boiler is the first installed at a ski area by Maine Energy Systems, the renewable heating company founded by Les Otten in 2008.

The ski resort plans to open for the season Dec. 17.

— From staff and news services