Survey Finds Many Crime Victims Don’t Go to Authorities
(Maine) The reasons are varied, but the facts are startling. About a third of adults in Maine were victims of a crime in 2021; yet fewer than half those victims reported the incidents to law enforcement. One bright spot – The Bangor Daily News reports a recent survey of more than 1300 adults showed a 20 percent decrease in the rate of victimization since the last survey in 2015 when 54 percent of respondents said they were victims of crimes.
(Maine) A 2022 survey of crime in Maine reveals some startling numbers. The Bangor Daily News reports the University of Southern Maine surveyed 1,360 Mainers and found the following: Thirty-four percent of respondents reported having been the victim of at least one crime in 2021. Crime victims were more likely to be people of color and women, and also young – between the ages of 18 and 34. Respondents from higher income families tended to be victims of id theft, while domestic violence, rape, and human trafficking were more prevalent among lower income groups.
(Maine) A 2022 survey conducted by the University of Southern Maine reveals some eye-opening statistics on the state’s crime rates. The Bangor Daily News reports about one-third of the 1360 adults surveyed said they were victims of crime in 2021; yet fewer than half reported the incidents to law enforcement. One in five victims reported at least one crime against them in 2021 was committed by a domestic partner or family member. Of the 34% who said they’d been victimized, only 13% reported seeking support from a victim services organization.
Boating Accident Ties Up High Street
(Ellsworth) A boating accident tied up traffic on High Street early Wednesday morning. The Ellsworth Police Department reports a trailer was hauling the large vessel near the Irving when the ship was tossed, falling off the trailer and hitting a car. The incident caused a plow truck to then hit the ship and another car. The crash happened about 6:15 yesterday morning. Traffic was backed up for about an hour and a half while crews worked to clear the wreckage.
(Ellsworth) A ship sustained heavy damage Wednesday morning when it fell off a trailer onto High Street in Ellsworth. According to the Ellsworth Police Department, the incident happened shortly after 6 a.m. near the Irving/Circle K. The boat reportedly hit a car, then was itself hit by a plow truck that hit the ship and another car. Traffic was slowed for about an hour and a half while crews worked to remove the wreckage. We understand Circle K provided hot coffee to the first responders – nice!
Court Rules in City of Ellsworth’s Favor
(Ellsworth) The Hancock County Superior Court yesterday ruled in favor of the City of Ellsworth by denying the temporary restraining order on the relocation of a much-needed police station building. In a press release, the City noted that while the ruling is not the end of the matter, they are confident future proceedings will result in a ruling in the City’s favor on the remaining issues. The judge declined to dismiss a lawsuit over the legality of Ellsworth’s decision to sign a lease for the new station. City Councilor Steve O’Halloran and three others had filed the lawsuits, claiming a decision on the move was made without adequate public notice.
(Ellsworth) Last October, Ellsworth City Council voted in favor of moving the cramped, inadequate police department headquarters to 416 High Street, a move that would also free up much needed space for the Ellsworth Fire Department. The decision has not been without controversy. City Councilor Steve O’Halloran and three others filed for a temporary restraining order on the relocation. Yesterday, the Hancock County Superior Court ruled in favor of the City. However, the judge declined to dismiss a lawsuit over the legality of Ellsworth’s decision to sign a lease at the new location. In a press release, City Manager Glenn Moshier said while the ruling is not the end of the matter, the City is confident rulings on the remaining issues will be resolved in the City’s favor as well.
Legislation Would Address Pedestrian Safety
(Washington, DC) A record twenty-one pedestrians were killed in Maine in 2022. The January 27th death of 27 yo Cameron Clewley of Newburgh has extended the tragedy into 2023. Senator Susan Collins announced Wednesday she has secured more than $800,000 in federal funding for four projects intended to improve pedestrian safety across the state. Projects include $200,000 for the Town of Bar Harbor to create a Comprehensive Transportation Action Plan. Other projects funded are in Auburn and Lewiston, Portland, and Sanford and Springvale.
(Washington, DC) With more than 3.5 million people visiting Acadia National Park each year, pedestrian safety is high on the mind of Bar Harbor town officials. Senator Susan Collins this week announced the town will receive $200,000 as part of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to create a comprehensive plan to reduce roadway fatalities, vehicle accidents and congestion, and to develop climate resilient infrastructure. The project is one of four pedestrian safety projects funded across the state. 2022 was the deadliest year on record for Maine pedestrians – with 21 pedestrians killed.
(Ellsworth) Heart of Ellsworth has partnered with six community banks to launch the 2023 Downtown Grants Program. Executive Director Cara Romano tells Star 97.7 applications doubled in the second year of the program last year. We asked Romano who’s eligible to apply. (((HOE Grants 1 “…to any of those questions, then they’re eligible.” :18))) Romano says the purpose is to bolster the downtown district and enhance and reward the downtown area. Apply by February 17th at heart of ellsworth dot org.
(Ellsworth) Six community banks have come together to sponsor this third year of the Downtown Ellsworth Grants Program. Heart of Ellsworth Executive Director Cara Romano tells Star 97.7, they’ve been fortunate to have such generous sponsors. (((HOE Grants 2 “…has generously supported, as well.” :18))) Eleven mini-grants of $1,000 each are available. For more information or to apply by February 17th, visit heart of ellsworth dot org.
(Ellsworth) Do you have a business in downtown Ellsworth? Are you collaborating with a downtown Ellsworth business owner or do you have plans to move your business downtown or plans that will enhance the downtown area? If so, Heart of Ellsworth Executive Director Cara Romano says you’re eligible to apply for the 2023 Downtown Grants Program. (((HOE Grants 3 “…and it will take you to a Google form.” :16))) Romano says the form is a mix of open ended and multiple choice questions to help you share your proposal. Eleven mini grants are available for $1,000 each. Deadline to apply is February 17th.
(Ellsworth) Heart of Ellsworth has partnered with six community banks to launch the 2023 Downtown Grants Program, offering 11 mini grants of $1,000 each. It’s easy to apply. Executive Director Cara Romano tells Star 97.7, the grants have been used to enhance a variety of projects to bolster the downtown Ellsworth district. (((HOE Grants 4 “…or social media presence.” :22))) Romano says the monies may also be used to enhance your building’s façade or interior. Apply anytime through February 17th at heart of ellsworth dot org
Only One UMaine School Shows Growth
(Presque Isle) The trend in Maine mirrors the trend nationwide. Across the country costs and other roadblocks mean enrollment at universities is down. For the sixth semester in a row, the University of Maine at Presque Isle is the only school in the UMaine system to register increased enrollment. The overall decrease means budget adjustments and could lead to a tuition hike.
(Presque Isle) University enrollment nationwide has been trending downward for the past decade. Falling birth rates, rising college tuition, and the economic impact of the pandemic have all been factors. In the University of Maine system, UMaine Presque Isle is the only one of seven campuses to see an increase in enrollment – for the sixth semester in a row. University officials say they’ve had to make budget adjustments, and that declining enrollment could lead to tuition hikes in the future.
MRC Looking at “All Options” to Reopen Shuttered Trash Plant
(Hampden) Now that the deadline for potential partner Revere Capital Advisors’ exclusivity agreement has come and gone with no deal, the Municipal Review Committee says it is looking at all options to reopen the recycling and solid waste facility in Hampden that served 115 towns before it was shuttered for financial reasons in May 2020. The MRC is planning multiple meetings this month to provide information and solicit feedback. The first will be a virtual town hall session on February 7th at 2 p.m. For more information, visit m r c maine dot org.
(Hampden) Another deadline came and went, ending Revere Capital Advisors’ exclusivity agreement with the MRC as a potential partner for the reopening of the Hampden trash facility. The recycling and solid waste facility served 115 towns before it was shuttered in May 2020 for financial reasons. The Municipal Review Committee says it is now looking at all options for reopening the plant and is planning multiple meetings this month to provide information and solicit feedback.
Utility Regulators Approve Power Projects
(AP/Portland) Maine utility regulators have given final approval to power projects that would provide enough electricity for at least 450,000 New England homes, along with construction of a new transmission corridor to get the electricity to the regional power grid. The unanimous vote by the Maine Public Utilities Commission comes after Massachusetts endorsed the project, becoming a partner and allowing costs to be shared by a larger pool of ratepayers. Maine ratepayers would be responsible for 60% of the costs, or about $1 billion, with the average rate payer paying an extra dollar a month in the first decade.
(AP/Portland) Maine utility regulators say power projects approved this week would provide enough electricity for nearly half a million New England homes, along with a new transmission corridor to transport electricity to the regional power grid. The projects are separate from the controversial so-called CMP Clean Energy Corridor. The project was approved by unanimous vote this week by the Maine Public Utilities Commission. Ratepayers will foot the bill for 60% of the new Aroostook County wind power line, or about a dollar per month for the next ten years for the average consumer.
Blue Hill Fair Wins at MAAFC
(Blue Hill) How’s this for a warm thought? The Blue Hill Fair! Of course it’s a few months away, but the fair that shells out its share of blue ribbons was itself the recipient of a mighty special award this past weekend in Portland. The Blue Hill Fair took first place at the Maine Association of Agricultural Fairs Conference, in the statewide contest, “Creating an Experience: Maine GROWS. The award was from the experience they created with their new “Charlotte’s Web” display. Congratulations!
City Gives Grace Period on Dog Licenses
(Ellsworth) The City of Ellsworth says it won’t be “dogging” you if you didn’t make it in to renew your dog license – at least for this week. The City Clerk’s office notes many residents have had difficulty making it to the office with the snowy weather, so they will not be assessing late fees through Friday, February 3rd. Late fees will continue, effective February 6th. Be sure to bring your pup’s rabies certificate and proof of spay or neuter.
(Ellsworth) The City of Ellsworth is giving dog owners a grace period for registering their pups. The City Clerk’s office says they understand the snowy weather has made it difficult for some folks to get out and about. So the deadline for renewing your dog license is now Friday, February 3rd. Be sure you have your pup’s rabies certificate and proof of spay/neuter when you come in.
Maine Holds Record for Tallest Snowman
(Bethel) Maine holds Guinness World records for some dubious feats, including fastest one mile run while wearing fins and most ears of corn husked in one minute. But there’s “Snow” comparison when it comes to building the tallest snow person. The Bangor Daily News reports in 1999, Bethel residents built Angus, King of the Mountain, who came in at 113 feet, 7 inches. In 2008, they followed up with Olympia SnowWoman, who hovered in the shadow of Sunday River Ski Resort at 122 feet, one inch. If you’re not sure who the two were named after, you might want to brush up on your politics – once you brush OFF all that snow on your car.
Celtics left no doubt against the Brooklyn Nets, giving the hometown crowd a 139-96 win last night. Celtics host the Phoenix Suns Friday.
Bruins skated to a 5-2 win over the Toronto Maple Leafs. Bruins off until Saturday when they host the Washington Capitals.
Local high school results from last night: Searsport wins against both the Sumner boys and girls, Foxcroft Academy beat the WA boys and girls teams. The Ellsworth girls crushed Hermon. The George Stevens boys defeated Narrauagus, and the Calais boys pulled off a three-point win over Machias.
Local high school basketball this evening: the Ellsworth boys take on Bucksport. And these girls’ teams on the courts – Jonesport-Beals takes on Shead, Machias up against Deer Isle/Stonington, and George Stevens runs the court against Central.