Army Corps of Engineers funds Wells Harbor dredging

The Army Corps of Engineers plans to allocate $3.5 million of federal funding to dredge Wells Harbor.

U.S. Sens. Susan Collins, a Republican, and Angus King, an independent, said remnants from Superstorm Sandy and winter storms have created a large shoal at the entrance to the harbor, making it virtually impassable except during high tide.

Because the harbor sustained damage from Sandy in late October, it was eligible for funding under the Sandy Supplemental Appropriations bill passed by Congress in January.

Dredging is scheduled to begin later this year.


Police department launches Citizens’ Police Academy

The Bangor Police Department is launching a Citizens’ Police Academy that will give people an inside look and working knowledge of the department.

According to the department, the program consists of eight 21/2-hour classes covering topics such as police patrol, criminal investigations, K-9 units, the bomb squad, crime scene investigations and drunken-driving enforcement.

The program is free and begins March 13.

Police say the academy is informative, but doesn’t train participants to be police officers.


SUV operator loses control, crashes on Interstate 295

A driver and his passenger were shaken up after a mechanical defect caused him to lose control of his sport utility vehicle on Interstate 295 northbound Sunday afternoon.

Maine State Police Trooper Larry Rose said a 2006 Toyota SUV operated by 51-year-old Raymond Carter of Bowdoinham spun out of control after the rear-end tire rod snapped.

The vehicle hit a guardrail on the side of the road before striking a Ford F-150 pickup truck operated by 45-year-old Michael Bergeron of Freeport. Bergeron and his teenage son were not hurt.

Carter and his passenger, 53-year-old Diana Carter of Bowdoinham, complained of pain. They were evaluated by medical personnel at the scene but did not have to be hospitalized.

Both lanes of northbound traffic were closed for a few minutes, and traffic backed up to Tukey’s Bridge in Portland.

The accident was reported at 3:40 p.m. Both lanes of traffic were open by 4:30 p.m.


State conference turning focus on problem gambling

With two casinos and a state-sanctioned lottery in operation in Maine, the state is about to hold its first conference on problem gambling.

The Maine Office of Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services will host the conference Thursday in Waterville. It is being held during National Problem Gambling Awareness Week, March 3-9.

Also participating will be the Maine Gambling Control Board, the Bureau of Alcoholic Beverages and Lottery Operations, Hollywood Casino and Oxford Casino. Organizers hope the conference will raise awareness about problem gambling and promoting responsible gaming.

Maine native Lesa Densmore will be the keynote speaker. Densmore will speak about her struggles and how she overcame her addiction and lives successfully in recovery.

Other sessions will focus on the integrated response to gambling concerns in Maine.


Alternative to cremation makes comeback in N.H.

An alternative to cremation that was shot down a few years ago by New Hampshire’s House is making a comeback.

The House votes Wednesday whether to allow human bodies to be dissolved into a soapy liquid.

The Legislature voted to allow the process in 2006, but reversed itself the next year and banned it. An attempt to lift the ban failed in 2009. The House Health, Human Services and Elderly Affairs Committee is recommending that the House vote to allow it.

The process uses lye, 300-degree heat and 60 pounds of pressure per square inch to destroy bodies in big stainless-steel cylinders.

— From staff and news services