• A lesson in livable cities

    A lesson in livable cities

    This week, we will take a peek over the fence into our neighbor’s yard. That neighbor is Quebec, both province and city, and the contrast with Maine is striking. First, you are rattling along the roads of upstate Maine, dodging and weaving around humps, bumps and potholes. Cross the border, and suddenly you are riding

  • Gubernatorial candidates line up

    Gubernatorial candidates line up

    Do they know something we don’t know? Last week, prior to any public word from Sen. Susan Collins about a bid for the Blaine House, two Republican legislative leaders entered the race. The first was state Sen. Garret Mason, Senate majority leader from Lisbon Falls. Tragically, no sooner had he announced than his mother, state

  • Special session poses challenges

    Special session poses challenges

    “Dear Legislators: Having a wonderful time. Wish you were here. Love, Governor LePage.” Okay, he didn’t put it quite like that, but the governor is calling the Legislature into special session “before November.” The governor says two problems have come up that cannot wait until January when the Legislature reconvenes. One has to do with

  • How a minority steals the show

    How a minority steals the show

    It may be a bad year for blueberries, but it is an excellent one for political candidates. A gubernatorial election is looming in 2018, and both of Maine’s congressional seats are up at the same time. The entire legislature will turn over that November as well. Candidates? Yeah, we’ve got candidates. It is lovely that

  • Critic in chief is out of his league

    Critic in chief is out of his league

    Heroes or villains? Maine’s two U.S. senators were both celebrated and castigated for their recent votes on the health care bill. Looking at what the bill would have meant for Maine, it is hard not to think they did the right thing. Independent Sen. Angus King joined Senate Democrats in opposing the “repeal and replace”

  • Your right to know? – Maybe

    Your right to know? – Maybe

    Ahh, August. Time to let sleeping dogs lie. Maine is far from the madness that has descended upon our nation’s capitol, though an occasional cloud mars the perfection of a summer day. Gov. Paul LePage, who announced in May that he would not run for the U.S. Senate, suggested in July that he might. He

  • Mixed results on legislative front

    Mixed results on legislative front

    The 128th Legislature is gone, but the melody lingers on. The passage of a budget means the oxygen has leaked out of Augusta, but some work remains. The rest of us are paying little attention. It’s summer. In just one year, most Hancock County legislators will term out. Only Rep. Brian Hubbell (Bar Harbor) and

  • The beginning of the end game

    The beginning of the end game

    Gov. Paul LePage has but a year to go in his administration, and another member of his staff is looking to the future. Her future. LePage spokeswoman Adrienne Bennett will begin work at Kennebec Savings Bank in August. A part of the governor’s administration from the very beginning, Press Secretary Bennett was the unflappable center