• Editorial: Problems with Question 1

    Question 1 on the Nov. 6 ballot is a citizen-initiated referendum. Like so many recent citizen-initiated referenda, it does not stand up to scrutiny. Promoted by the Maine People’s Alliance, the initiative would impose a new tax on higher incomes in Maine to fund in-home health care services for the elderly and disabled. It also

  • Editorial: What can be learned?

    Five months after a town meeting debate and vote, the town of Mount Desert is finally getting closer to signing a contract and breaking ground on the redevelopment of Main Street in Northeast Harbor. The project has been in the planning stages for more than three years. Selectmen approved a revised plan that addresses some

  • Editorial: Looking for fairness

    Maine’s school funding formula, though flawed, is generally regarded as the best method for determining equitable distribution of state support. The method uses property valuation to determine a community’s wealth. Fair enough, one might say. The higher the valuation, the reasoning goes, the better the likelihood that a community can fund education through local property

  • Editorial: Worth a shot

    Two trends help explain the lack of affordable housing on Mount Desert Island. One is the growth of short-term vacation rentals. The other is the phenomenon of large employers buying apartments and other buildings for seasonal employee housing. Acadia National Park’s recently announced plan to partner with a private developer to build, on federal land,

  • Editorial: Name of the game

    Mount Desert Island High School sports teams regularly win sportsmanship awards. These awards recognize “conduct which imposes a type of self-control involving honest rivalry, courteous relations among the players, coaches and officials, and graceful acceptance of results.” But the lessons of teamwork reach much deeper than “courteous relations.” At swim meets, students stand or kneel

  • Editorial: Stay high or go low?

      The minor dustup between the district attorney and his challenger, though amusing, did nothing to enhance the public profile of either gentleman. DA candidate Steve Juskewitch emailed the Hancock County Commissioners on Sept. 18 asking that they delay hiring an administrative assistant/legal secretary until after the election on Nov. 6. If he prevails, Juskewitch

  • Editorial: Civic interest

    The Town of Bar Harbor has a permanent Cruise Ship Committee, appointed by the town council and charged with overseeing cruise ship operations and making recommendations to the council for any needed policy changes. Many of the seats on the committee are held by non-residents with relevant expertise. A citizen petition brought forward this summer

  • Editorial: Good service wins the day

    On any given day, more than 100,000 flights crisscross America, leaving from and landing at the 5,200 paved runway airports that dot the landscape. With a big country, a good economy and lots of tourist places to visit, Americans are flying. While we covet the access to major transportation hubs such as New York, Detroit

  • Editorial: Nurses Needed

    Our national health care debate often conflates access to adequate health care with health insurance coverage. Those are two different critters. While there is no ignoring the rapidly expanding cost of health care in America — more than 17 percent of the entire economy — health care debates often leave out the human costs in

  • Editorial: Somebody’s got to do it

    The federal lands that make up Acadia National Park are intertwined with four towns on Mount Desert Island and several more island and mainland municipalities. Law enforcement, firefighters and emergency medical teams are getting better all the time at working together across the boundaries. But policy decisions made by the towns affect the park and