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This week’s edition!


Governor’s Address: Democrats’ insistence on surtax will harm our small businesses

Politicians in Augusta need to escape the bubble and listen to Maine’s small business owners. They don’t want to be over-taxed so their money can fund an already bloated education system.

Dear Maine Taxpayer,

A survey of small Maine businesses reported that more than 77 percent of small-business owners want to eliminate the 3 percent surtax imposed by referendum last November.

This job-killing surtax is already affecting our small businesses. 68 percent of small-business owners said the surtax will result in less money for them to invest in workers. Over 19 percent of them said the surtax will make it more difficult to hire or retain high-skill workers.

These high-skill workers include doctors, dentists, engineers, lawyers, accountants and other professionals. Many are preparing to leave the state, and some have already left. Recruiters say this surtax is making it more difficult to attract these much-needed professionals to Maine.

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Enough is Enough: Dilly-dallying by Legislature has delayed the state budget

By Robert E. Macdonald

Mayor of Lewiston

I hope Mainers who are paying the freight that allows the State of Maine to operate read, reflected on and absorbed last week’s article by Governor Paul R. LePage concerning Maine’s biennial budget. (“As usual, budget comes down to crunch time,” TCT, p. 3, June 15, 2017)

It is very illuminating and lays out the major problem that keeps Maine from thriving—our legislature! If you missed it, go online, pull it up and read it. It is a very worthwhile read.

Before going on, stop and think of how you arrive at and set your family household budget. Many of you follow the proven, time-tested model used in successful business practices. You take your total earnings, review your expenses and maybe put aside a small amount that will be used in emergencies or unexpected costs down the road. If you find yourself in the “plus” column, great. If you spend more than you take in, which lands you in the “minus” column, then you must decide where to cut to maintain your daily living standards.

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Nutrition Center lays groundwork for new garden by planting sunflowers

The sunflowers will help remediate lead in the soil and beautify the space until the garden can be designed and planted.

Nearly 50 people gathered at St. Mary’s Nutrition Center recently to celebrate the forthcoming creation of a new learning garden at their Bates Street location. Last fall, the Nutrition Center cleared the lot behind their building and planted a cover crop to prepare the land for a new garden.  When soil tests revealed lead levels just above recommended levels, organizers decided to forgo gardening this summer and plant sunflowers instead, which will help remediate lead in the soil and beautify the space until the learning garden can be designed and built.

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Land Trust hosts second Boats ’n’ Brews River Race

Roughly seven miles long, the race course starts at the foot of the Great Falls and ends at the Durham Public Boat Launch. NorthEast Charter & Tour Co. will provide free shuttle service back to Auburn.

The Androscoggin Land Trust will present its second annual Great Falls Boats ’n’ Brews River Race on Saturday, June 24. This amateur competitive river race will begin at 9 a.m. just below the Great Falls. Race day registration and check-in will be at Festival Plaza from 7:30 to 8:30 a.m., and paddlers will enter the water at the Auburn Public Boat Launch behind Festival Plaza.

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Sodalist of the Year

Marie Hebert (r.) was named Sodalist of the Year by the St. Anne Sodality of Holy Family, Prince of Peace Parish of Lewiston at the group’s annual meeting recently.  She was honored for her devotion and contributions of time and effort to the sodality, church and community. The event took place at the Green Ladle on the Lewiston High School campus, where Louis PhilIip provided the entertainment. In attendance was her husband, Robert, children, and friends. She is pictured here with vice president Claudette Jalbert.

World Refugee Day celebration at Simard Payne Memorial Park

The event will feature music and performances, craft demos, food samples, activities for children, and Catholic Charities of Maine’s “Far from Home” refugee experience simulation.

This year’s Lewiston-Auburn World Refugee Day celebration will take place on Thursday, June 29, from 5 to 7:30 p.m. at Simard Payne Memorial Park at 46 Beech Street in Lewiston.

World Refugee Day is a global event celebrating and honoring the courage and struggles of the more than 15 million refugees worldwide who have been displaced by war and persecution. Each year, Maine welcomes refugees and asylum seekers from countries around the world and helps them safely rebuild their lives. Lewiston-Auburn has become home to refugees and asylum seekers from more than 12 countries, resulting in one of Maine’s most diverse communities.

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Letter to the Editor: Charter Commission picks familiar new name

To the Editor:

The Maine law on municipal consolidations stipulates that the Lewiston Auburn Joint Charter Commission is responsible for choosing the name of the new city. The Charter Commission has announced their decision: Lewiston-Auburn, Maine.

During the past two months, the Lewiston Auburn Joint Charter Commission (aided on a pro-bono basis by a team from Association for Consulting Expertise) engaged with voters in both cities to solicit ideas for the new name. The Commissioners participated in radio, TV and newspaper interviews to encourage citizens to suggest names. In all, over 1,000 submissions were received.

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Governor’s Address: As usual, budget comes down to crunch time

Folks, it’s déjà vu all over again.

Dear Maine Taxpayer,

I submitted a balanced budget in January. But—as usual—the Legislature has waited until the very last minute to get serious about it.

They are scurrying around like Keystone Cops, trying to get a budget done and get it to me with just seconds to spare. This is the fourth biennial budget of my term, and they have done this every time.

This year, however, is worse than ever. It is due in part to the inexperience in the Legislature. Too many new legislators have not participated in the budget process. They are basically clueless.

Even worse, there is a massive leadership void in the majorities of the House of Representatives and Senate. Good leaders could help guide inexperienced legislators through the budget process.

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Enough is Enough: Most dangerous city in the state, welfare oversight and nip bottles

By Robert E. Macdonald

Mayor of Lewiston

The headline in “The Wall Street Journal” read, “The Most Dangerous City in Every State.” I neither subscribe to nor read this publication, opting to spend my money on what I consider a more important necessity—my breakfast.

I spend my days in coffee shops speaking with members of the public, reading three newspapers and hard-covered books. I do this in lieu of surfing the Internet.

But others do!

Last week upon entering the first of my daily breakfast stops, one of the regular patrons stopped me and brought my digestive system to instant agita (upset stomach) and my mental state to a boil. She told me there was an article floating around on the Internet characterizing Lewiston as the most dangerous city in Maine. She had no idea of the source.

Calling my crack office staff, they quickly located the article and printed a copy for my review.

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Franco Center to host “Fête Nationale” celebration

Highlighting the festivities will be a special dedication ceremony honoring the center’s founding executive director, Rita S. Dubé.

The Fête Nationale of Quebec, the Feast Day of St. Jean the Baptist, will be celebrated locally with a traditional meal and entertainment on Friday, June 23 at the Gendron Franco Center in Lewiston. Highlighting the festivities will be a special dedication ceremony honoring the Franco Center’s founding executive director, Rita S. Dubé.

The event will start with a social hour and cash bar in the center’s Heritage Hall at 10:30 a.m. A traditional feast day meal of Soup Bouillon, Salade de Printemps, Meat Tourtiere, and Cake des Fêtes will be served at 11:30 a.m. At noon, churches from across the Twin Cities will mark the occasion by ringing their bells. At 12:30 p.m., a program in the center’s Performance Hall will feature live traditional music by Nel Meservier and Les Troubadours. Special guests will include Marie-Claude Francoeur of the Québec Delegation to Boston. Concluding the program will be a surprise tribute and traditional fireworks display.

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