• Trojan warriors, hats off to you!

    Everyone in the high school building is seen and recognized for who they are. Ask any military leader, business manager, or parent on a family vacation: good morale is no small thing. Pep rallies and fight songs fill a human need for belonging, and knowing we belong helps inspire us to do our best. As

  • Editorial: Underground connections

    Do unto those downstream as you would have those upstream do unto you. That lesson is rearing its head as Tremont selectmen continue to wrestle with what to do about contaminated well water in some parts of the town. Groundwater flows freely across boundary lines. If a water well is too close to a neighbor’s

  • Editorial: In praise of ‘localism’

    The benefits of having an engaged, close-knit community are never far from the minds of Mount Desert Island residents. Knowing citizens have the ability to make meaningful change, as groups have worked to pass ordinances requiring night-sky friendly lighting, rebuild playgrounds with public and private funding and impose reasonable bounds on development and commercial use.

  • Editorial: Cost of subsidies

    Ask Maine wild blueberry farmers about this year’s crop and their forlorn response tells the story of an industry under heavy stress. Field prices have been abysmal over the past two years, only 27 cents a pound last year, causing many small blueberry farmers to stop harvesting and let their fields go fallow. What else

  • Editorial: Direct democracy?

    In Mount Desert and in Bar Harbor this year, local residents have endeavored to move town policy by way of the citizen initiative process available under the towns’ charters. Like the statewide ballot initiatives that have languished in Augusta for want of agreement on how to implement them, these initiatives have understandable goals. But, also

  • Editorial: Proficiency snafu

    Compulsory education became the law of the land in 1918 — just 100-years ago. Elementary education and “common schools” existed before that time, but the number of children receiving formal education was modest. Today in Maine, 620 public schools and 117 private institutions assure that every child has access to a fair and “free” (taxpayer-funded)

  • Editorial: Weighing in

    Public projects often proceed in fits and starts. After years of effort, the Town of Southwest Harbor finally purchased the gravel parking area adjacent to the Manset town dock. Voters approved the purchase in a landslide vote (98-6) at a well-attended special town meeting last fall. As town officials contemplate what’s next, traditional and habitual

  • Editorial: Medicaid expansion remains unresolved

    The expansion of MaineCare remains unresolved, unyielding and unfunded. Widening the opening to admit another 70,000 to 80,000 recipients of Maine’s version of Medicaid is one of the most contentious battles in Augusta. Proponents of expanding eligibility and inviting more applicants to our MaineCare program are butting heads with Governor LePage, who insists that any

  • Editorial: Too much of a good thing

    Town governments represent residents, property owners and voters. Of course it’s incumbent upon elected officials, appointed volunteers and professional staff to move their town in a direction wanted by those constituencies. Officials always must weigh when it’s time to seek and hear public input, and when it’s time to close debate and take action. Our

  • Editorial: Nuts and bolts

    Northeast Harbor is abuzz about whether, or when, the village’s Main Street will be rebuilt. Accurate news of the project and the related citizen petition appear to have been overshadowed by rumor and mistrust. “Who’s on first?” Mount Desert voters approved the reconstruction project earlier this year. The town’s selectmen do not have the authority