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This week’s edition!

Op-Ed: Fear of L-A merger comes from long- and short-term costs

By Robert Reed, Lewiston

Maura Murphy is right—those of us who are opposed to the merger live in fear. (Op-Ed: “Opposition to L-A merger seems to come from fear,” TCT, August 24, 2017).

But perhaps she should ask what our fears are, instead of assuming so much.

Eight years ago we went through a similar attempt while I served on Lewiston City Council, and it was by the efforts of a small group that we debunked the numbers provided and were able to stop what would have been a disaster. Today I find myself in a similar place, again having to analyze the numbers provided and place them in context and defend my actions. So what do I fear?

I fear significant tax increases, both long term and short term, should a merger pass. While the Joint Charter Commission report provided lots of hypotheticals of what the city could look like in terms of savings, they glossed over the costs associated with a merger, simply listing them without assigning any financial weight to them. As chairperson of the City of Lewiston Finance Committee, I see these costs often and was able to ask those who do the actual work what the costs might be for some of the expenses. Just taking the $2.4 million the JCC indicates could be saved and reducing it by the leveling-up of management salaries totaling $1.6 million leaves two cities combined only saving $800,000 a year. But we must calculate the other costs.

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Governor’s Address: Join the fight to lower taxes and help Maine families prosper

It is so refreshing to have a President in the White House who truly understands what it takes to create jobs and grow the economy.

Dear Maine Taxpayer,

From his long and successful career in business, President Trump knows firsthand that a burdensome tax code doesn’t create jobs, it kills them. When he outlined his vision for tax reform last week, I was pleased to see it will help Maine families keep more of their hard-earned paychecks.

Americans now spend 6 million hours and more than $250 billion preparing taxes each year. Small businesses incur between $15 and $16 billion on tax-compliance costs.

Imagine if even a fraction of that money was spent investing in our economy, creating jobs, taking family vacations or raising wages. Imagine doing your taxes on a single sheet of paper.

The U.S. tax code is inefficient, bureaucratic and does not promote a competitive economy. It stifles companies and prevents job creation. I agree with President Trump that Americans deserve a tax system that is simple, fair and easy to understand.

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Enough is Enough: Progressives favor a Portland-style Democrat for Congress

By Robert E. Macdonald

Mayor of Lewiston

“I am not a Portland Democrat!” bellowed Lewiston Democratic State Representative Jared Golden. But his actions and votes in Augusta would garner him an Academy Award for acting like one.

He is being urged to run for Congress by the progressive leadership of Maine’s Democratic Party, hoping that his combat service in Iraq and Afghanistan (for which I hold him in high regard) will mask his progressive political leanings in Augusta.

He has combined his legislative experience and his service in the Marine Corps to figuratively blow a hole in Maine’s effort, which is overwhelmingly supported in Maine’s Second Congressional District, to deny benefits to undocumented illegal aliens. His vote has placed an unnecessary burden on Maine taxpayers and certain service cities (Lewiston being one) to bear the cost of these undocumented individuals so that Maine’s privileged progressives in the First Congressional District could ease their guilt.

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Norlands hosts Saturday Pie Social

The Merry Plinksters

Step back into the post-Civil War era against a backdrop of rolling fields and woodlands at a Pie Social hosted by Washburn-Norlands Living History Center on Saturday, September 9, from 1 to 4 p.m. History and music, along with the delicious aroma of fresh-baked homemade pies, will fill the autumn air at this seventh annual fundraising event for Norlands.

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Concert on the Quad

Fiddler-violinist Jeremy Kittel

Trained in jazz, winner of a Scottish-style fiddle championship, celebrated as a composer, and a veteran of collaborations with the likes of Yo Yo Ma, My Morning Jacket, and Chris Thile, fiddler-violinist Jeremy Kittel and band will open the 2017-18 Olin Concert Series at Bates College with a performance on the Historic Quad at College Street and Campus Avenue in Lewiston. Free and open to the public, the event will take place on Saturday, September 9 at 9 p.m. For more information, call 786-6135 or email

SeniorsPlus receives grant to continue New Mainers nutrition program

From left, Hassan Olhaye, Fiston Mubalama, and Nsikidi Alberto enjoy lunch together at a dining site developed with funding from the Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Foundation.

SeniorsPlus has received a $10,000 grant from the Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Foundation to continue to develop a dining site and cooking classes, with interpretation and written translation, for older adult refugees in downtown Lewiston. The program, which was launched this year, focuses on cooking and sourcing nutritious foods, including local farm foods, as well as creating a hub for social interaction. SeniorsPlus will continue to develop the program in partnership with St. Mary’s Nutrition Center and Health Androscoggin.

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Local bicyclist rides from Fort Kent to Kittery

Don Robitaille (Photo by Rachel Morin)

Don Robitaille hears the call of the open road, the lure behind each bend and he just has to hop on his bike to explore. Don celebrated his 86th birthday on August 25 and decided to mark the occasion with a bike ride from Fort Kent to Kittery travelling Route 1 all the way.

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Enough is Enough: A neighborhood on the rise; Lewiston needs skilled workers

By Robert E. Macdonald

Mayor of Lewiston

Over the past five-plus years, Lewiston has seen a moderate growth in business and housing. Lisbon, Lincoln and Main Streets are again becoming the heart and soul of our city.

A variety of restaurants and eateries downtown are creating a cosmopolitan atmosphere in the area. We have large, small and Mom-and-Pop type businesses springing up throughout the downtown, providing much-needed services and local employment for our residents. Blight has been replaced by new business facades, Argo Marketing, a building soon to rise like a phoenix filling in a 15-plus year hole on Lisbon Street and the recreation of Bates Mill No. 5.

We have also built a scenic Riverwalk. We have nature trails throughout the city. Simard Payne Park has been turned into a place where joggers and those on a lunch break can be found. It is a place to take leisure walks or sit and clear your head. It provides a venue for the Balloon Festival, concerts and other area events.

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St. Dom’s opens school year with special Mass, awards ceremony

The Bishop asked the students to be honest and speak the truth in their relationships with each other.

Hundreds of students, teachers, parents, and community members gathered inside the gymnasium of Saint Dominic Academy’s Auburn campus on Thursday, August 24, as Bishop Robert P. Deeley celebrated a special afternoon Mass to offer his blessings upon the Saint Dominic Academy family at the start of a new school year. Among the concelebrants were Fr. Timothy Nadeau, Pastor of Prince of Peace Parish in Lewiston, and Fr. Seamus Griesbach, Academy Chaplain and Director of Vocations for the diocese. Students from the academy’s Lewiston campus were bussed to Auburn for the Mass.

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Former President George H.W. Bush named first recipient of Spy Museum honor 

Former President George H.W. Bush (seated left) holds up the International Spy Museum’s first award. He is joined in the photo by (clockwise) Lynda Webster, International Spy Museum President and COO Tamara Christian, the Honorable William H. Webster, ISM Founding Executive Director Peter Earnest, ISM VP of Development and Membership Rebecca Diamond, and former First Lady Barbara Bush. (Photo by Evan F. Sisley)

The International Spy Museum recently presented the first ever William H. Webster Distinguished Service Award to former President George H.W. Bush, 41st president of the United States and former Director of Central Intelligence, for his extraordinary leadership and contributions to the Intelligence Community.

Chosen by a committee of highly regarded former intelligence leaders, honorees demonstrate extraordinary contributions to the Intelligence Community at the national or international level. They embody the values of Judge William H. Webster, the only person to serve as both Director of Central Intelligence and Director of the FBI, including honor, integrity, probity, and fidelity to the law.

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