Letters to the Gov   (Ellsworth) – Municipal leaders are showing frustration with the continued state ordered closures to try to stem the Coronavirus pandemic.  Ellsworth city councilors approved a letter to the governor last night asking that the required 14-day quarantine for visitors be eliminated in favor of an education campaign.  Lincoln town councilors […]

Star 97.7 - Smooth Rock n' Roll Local News - May 5, 2020 - Star 97.7
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Local News – May 5, 2020

Letters to the Gov

 

(Ellsworth) – Municipal leaders are showing frustration with the continued state ordered closures to try to stem the Coronavirus pandemic.  Ellsworth city councilors approved a letter to the governor last night asking that the required 14-day quarantine for visitors be eliminated in favor of an education campaign.  Lincoln town councilors penned a letter to Governor Mills asking for permission for businesses to reopen and operate under state recommended safety guidelines.  The governor extended the stay at home order through the end of May.

 

 

Maguire MDI Hospital CEO

(Bar Harbor) – The chief operating officer at MDI Hospital will become the next CEO of the health care facility.  Chrissy Maguire will take over the hospital at the end of 2020.  She’s been with the hospital, starting as the Chief Finance Officer in 2011.  Maguire grew up in Lamoine and was a past president at the Ellsworth Chamber of Commerce.  She replaces Art Blank who will retire at the end of the year.

 

Kayak Death

(Meddybemps) – The Maine Warden Service has identified a 62-year old Calais man as the victim of a kayaking incident on a lake in Meddybemps.  Spokesman Mark Latti reports to Star 97.7 that other kayakers spotted Francis Beaulieu in the water and in trouble.  When they reached him, he was unresponsive. They were able to get him to shore, but rescue crews could not revive Beaulieu.  The investigation into his death continues.

 

Concerts Canceled

(Ellsworth) – One of the more popular events of the summer in Ellsworth won’t happen this year.  Leaders of the Ellsworth Concert Band canceled the summer season that generally starts after July 4th and runs on Wednesday nights through mid-August, performing at the city’s Harbor Park at a gazebo.  Band President Kelly Tupper informed members that limitations imposed by state government would not allow the band to rehearse and perform.  As Tupper noted in her letter, it’s pretty much impossible to play instruments with facemasks on.

 

Lobster Fishermen

 

(Local) Fishermen are splitting their time between hauling traps on the coast to selling their catch in parking lots inland. Blake Alley of Steuben says lobster fishing has always been a family affair and they’ve adapted by selling lobsters in parking lots.  Alley created a Facebook page so folks can buy lobster, clams, and other seafood directly from local fishermen. Search for “Parking Lot Seafood” on Facebook.

 

COVID-19 Monday

 

 

(Augusta) The Maine CDC reports there have been 1,185 cases of coronavirus since the outbreak began here. However, director Dr Nirav Shah explained during Monday’s news briefing that within that number only 1,136 cases are actually confirmed and there are 69 probable cases. 706 Mainers have recovered while 57 residents have died of the illness.

 

Island Explorer

(Trenton)  Downeast Transportation will indefinitely postpone running the Island Explorer bus system service for 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  Executive Director Paul Murphy said in order to meet social distancing guidelines issued by the State of Maine and the CDC, Island Explorer buses could only carry 12 passengers each, as compared to the normal capacity of 30 seated and 14 standing passengers.  The company continues to operate commuter bus routes on weekdays.  In 2019, the propane-powered, far-free transit system that serves Acadia National Park carried more than 648 thousand passengers.

 

Sunday River

BETHEL, Maine (AP) — A Bethel restaurant owner is ready for Round 2 of flouting Democratic Gov. Janet Mill’s executive orders over the coronavirus. Rick Savage said he’s reopening his Sunday River Brewing Co. today in defiance of the governor’s orders, and he’s continuing to criticize Mills for not acting fast enough to reopen the state’s economy. Savage opened his restaurant for dine-in customers on Friday and then closed over the weekend before deciding to reopen after determining that his federal beer-making license wouldn’t be imperiled. The state already revoked his food and liquor licenses, but he has said he’ll pay the fines. The governor’s orders allow restaurants to open only for takeout orders until June 1.

 

Cancellations

(Boothbay Harbor)  Add the Boothbay Harbor Lobster Races to the list of summer events cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  The event, originally scheduled for June 20th, joins the growing number of cancelled events for 2020, including the Machias Blueberry Festival, Beach to Beacon 10K, and Southwest Harbor’s 4th of July Fireworks.

 

 

Paycheck Protection Program

(Augusta)  More small businesses in Maine are taking advantage of the Paycheck Protection Program.  Since the second wave of funding was authorized last week, the program has provided over $175 billion dollars of relief.  In the state of Maine, more than 25 thousand small businesses have received $2.5 billion dollars.  The Paycheck Protection Program offers forgivable loans to small businesses who keep employees on the payroll during the pandemic, as well as self-employed individuals like carpenters, fishermen, and plumbers.

 

 

Ellsworth American Retirement

(Ellsworth)  John and Lorraine “Cookie” Foss know all about deadlines.  The couple has been part of a small crew at The Ellsworth American, where numerous publications each week are printed, assembled, and strapped together by the thousands in a matter of two and a half hours while delivery vehicles wait outside.  Last week, they met their final newspaper deadline, opting to retire together on April 30th.  Cookie joined the Ellsworth American in 1979, and John in 2003.  According to the newspaper, the pair worked diligently through power outages, machinery malfunctions, mishaps, and memorable moments.  Now they’ll have time to sit back and READ those papers.  Happy retirement!

 

Teacher Appreciation Week

(Augusta)  Governor Janet Mills and the Maine Department of Education helped kick off Teacher Appreciation Week Monday by encouraging families and students across Maine to join them in sending letters, cards, and social media posts to thank and acknowledge the dedicated teachers in their lives.  Commissioner of Education Pender Makin said, “Teachers are working harder than ever before, and I can’t think of a better time for families around the state to applaud their tireless efforts to educate Maine students under some of the most challenging circumstances…”  The Governor encouraged folks to post on social media using the hashtag #Thanks4TeachingME and to tag the Maine Department of Education who will then help share your messages.

 

National Corrections Week

(Bangor)  May 4 through 10 is National Corrections Week. Sheriff Troy Morton of the Penobscot County Sheriff’s Office Monday sent out a personal thank you to Correction Officers for their dedication to the profession, saying, “The mission of operating safe and humane correctional facilities would not be possible, if not for these true heroes.”  Sheriff Morton went on to say mental health, substance use disorder and medical issues overshadow the original functions of detaining individuals for the purpose of attending court, and he encouraged citizens to thank our corrections officers and their families for their daily sacrifices.

 

Sports

 

  • Newly acquired Red Sox outfielder Alex Verdugo says his spine is fully healed and he looks forward to playing this season – if there is one.  Verdugo says he’s used the time off during the coronavirus pandemic to rehab a stress fracture.
  • Legendary football coach Don Shula has died at the age of 90.  Shula had more wins than any other coach in pro-football history with 347 while coaching the Colts and Dolphins.