UMaine System budget has no tuition increase in 2013

The University of Maine System says its 2013 budget under consideration includes no tuition increase for the first time in a quarter century.

The system’s trustees met Sunday in Bangor and will meet again today to vote on an operating budget for the fiscal year that begins July 1.

Tuition and the mandatory unified fee for in-state undergraduate students are expected to be kept at current levels.

System officials say they’re presenting a balanced budget to the trustees despite a $2.3 million decrease in the state appropriation.

Other items on the agenda include continuation of leases for two UMaine Cooperative Extension facilities in Tenants Harbor and Bryant Pond, naming a UMaine baseball batting pavilion, and demolition of two structures at the University of Maine at Farmington.

Inland Fisheries and Wildlife to offer butterfly ID training

The Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife will offer butterfly identification training next month in hopes of expanding its statewide survey.

Maine has at least 120 species of butterflies, but spokesman Doug Rafferty said the state has only a rudimentary knowledge of them compared with neighboring states and provinces, including Vermont, Connecticut, Massachusetts and New Brunswick, which have compiled butterfly atlases.

Phillip deMaynadier, state wildlife biologist, will help train volunteers next month at Colby College in Waterville with the hope that they’ll contribute to the annual survey.


LePage chooses Maine chefs for Seafood Cook-off

Two of Maine’s top chefs will represent the state at the Great American Seafood Cook-off in Louisiana this summer.

In response to a challenge by Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal to appoint a chef to represent Maine, Gov. Paul LePage chose chef Melissa Bouchard and her assistant, chef Clifford Pickett, as “Team Maine” for the competition.

Bouchard and Pickett work at DiMillo’s on the Water in Portland.

They will compete against other top-level professional chefs from around the country on Aug. 11 for the title of “King/Queen of American Seafood.”

The annual Great American Seafood Cook-Off pits up-and-coming chefs against recognized culinary greats from around the United States.

Chefs are asked to create unique dishes with sustainable, domestic seafood that is native to their home state.


Central Maine Power reports power restored after outage

Central Maine Power Co. said Sunday that it had restored power to nearly all of the 6,000 customers in Cumberland, Androscoggin and Somerset counties who lost power around 9 a.m.

The utility said a transmission line coming out of the Yarmouth substation was out, causing the problem. Power had been restored to all but 19 customers by midafternoon.

– From news service reports