Island Briefs

Honoring Martin Luther King Jr. 

BAR HARBOR  In honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, on Monday, Jan.18, MDI Racial Equity Working Group, YWCA MDI and MDI Helpers: Pandemic Mutual Aid invite you to participate in celebrating his life and achievements. 

Share your artwork depicting the social justice values King exemplified by drawing, painting, playing music or using other forms of art to represent his teachings. Once complete, send them to [email protected] by Friday, Jan. 15, and they will become part of a slide presentation to be shared on Jan. 18.   

MDI Helpers: Pandemic Mutual Aid has also put a list together of opportunities to perform a service to recognize King’s work. Visit their Facebook page, MDI Helpers: Pandemic Response or go to 


Nominate a teacher 

BAR HARBOR – Nominations are now open for the 2021 County Teachers of the Year and 2022 Teacher of the Year. Members of the public are encouraged to nominate educators who demonstrate a commitment to excellence and who inspire the achievement of all students. 

The 2021 County Teachers of the Year serve as advocates for teachers, students and the efforts underway in Maine’s public schools to prepare students for success in college, career and civic life. They serve as advisors to the Department of Education and state-level education stakeholders across Maine. They also join a cohort of teacher leaders that actively work together for the betterment of education in Maine. County Teachers of the Year receive on-going professional learning and participate in many state and county leadership opportunities. 

The 2022 Maine Teacher of the Year will be selected from the 16 county honorees. The field will be narrowed to eight semi-finalists and then three state finalists before the Maine Teacher of the Year is announced by Maine’s Education Commissioner.  

For more information and to nominate a teacher, go to Nominations will be open through 5 p.m. on Feb. 5. 


Superintendent contract extended 

BAR HARBOR — The MDI Regional School System board voted Monday to extend Superintendent Marc Gousse’s employment contract through June 2026. The board is scheduled to consider a further extension in December. Gousse has served as superintendent since 2016. 

The school board on Monday also extended the employment contracts for several other school system administrators and department heads. 


Board revamps outdoor signage requirements 

BAR HARBOR — A motion was approved by the Bar Harbor Planning Board to redraft an existing land use ordinance regulation regarding changes to outdoor signage during a public hearing at last week’s meeting.  

This amendment clarifies that uses providing lodging for vacationers are allowed to have outdoor neon signs; correct the list of illuminated signs prohibited in all districts; describe where certain subtypes of illuminated signs are allowed; show with an illustration where certain sign types are prohibited along Route 3 beginning in the north where it crosses over Eddie Brook and ending in the south where it crosses over Cromwell Brook; and allow for the replacement of any one, conforming, non-illuminated sign on certain properties without requiring Design Review Board review and broadening an existing exemption that is limited to three specific types of signs.  

It would also create and define a fifth type of internally illuminated sign called push-through lettering; more clearly differentiate the two subtypes of internally illuminated signs, as Type 2-A and Type 2-B; and create and define a new type of sign called neon sign, recognizing it is a type of sign that already exists in town under certain conditions and which is referred to elsewhere in the ordinance but is not presently defined, with the definition including signs designed for imitating neon signage. 

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