Bill that would boost rural Maine industries clears hurdle 

PRESQUE ISLE, Maine (AP) — A U.S. Senate committee has signed off on a funding bill that would provide help to Maine’s potato industry as well as other rural enterprises. 

Republican Sen. Susan Collins says the bill includes $2.75 million for potato research grants. She’s a member of the Appropriations Committee, which has passed the Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies funding bill for fiscal year 2020 with a unanimous vote. 

Collins says the bill would also boost other industries important to rural Maine’s economy, including aquaculture, craft brewing and organic agriculture. She says the proposal “would assist our nation’s farmers, invest in critical agricultural research” and support rural development projects. 

The bill includes $20 million for an integrated pest management program that will support work at University of Maine. 

Gas prices rise a little in northern New England 

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — Gas prices have risen a little on the heels of an attack on major oil sites in Saudi Arabia. 

The latest GasBuddy price reports show Maine’s prices rose 3.3 cents per gallon in the last week, to $2.55. New Hampshire’s went up 2.3 cents per gallon, to $2.48. Vermont’s price went up slightly, to $2.63. 

The national average is $2.66 per gallon. That’s up 7.3 cents from a month ago, and 17.4 cents per gallon lower than a year ago. 


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