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This week’s edition!

Auburn Fire Chief earns professional designation

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Chief Geoffrey Low

The City of Auburn has announced that Fire Chief Geoffrey Low has earned the professional designation of “Chief Fire Officer (CFO).” The CFO credential, which was awarded by the Center for Public Safety Excellence, is a significant professional achievement, requiring a strong educational background, diverse participation in emergency services at the local, state, and national level, and demonstrated involvement in the broader community, all validated by emergency services peers.

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Historical society publishes Edward Little biography

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Those who would like a unique peek into Edward Little’s life while purchasing a copy of the book may do so at a special signing event at the Edward Little House in Auburn.

Androscoggin Historical Society has published a new book about Edward Little (1773-1849), one of the “founding fathers” of Auburn and Lewiston and the namesake of Edward Little High School. “Dear Parent: A Biography and Letters of Edward Little” was researched and written by Douglas I Hodgkin, who has written several works on local history.

While Little is best known for having founded Lewiston Falls Academy, which became Edward Little High School, less well known is the role of the Little Family in founding what became High Street Congregational Church, as well as bridges, railroads, and the mills at the falls, until the latter were taken over by Boston-based investors.

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Auburn parish gets act(s) together for Cabaret Night 

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The committee organizing the event includes (l. to r., from front) Jeannine Peyser, Production Coordinator Carol DeRoy, Gladys Galarneau, Diane Dennis, Ron Peyser, Stage Manager Pam Vaillancourt, Roland Bergeron, and Bonnie Stone.

Talented performers from Auburn’s Immaculate Heart of Mary community will shine on Saturday, February 18 at 7 p.m. as the parish presents a fun-filled “Cabaret Night” of music and laughter to raise funds for its pipe organ project.

A parade of talented performers from the parish will grace the stage for a show that host and guest entertainer Louis Philippe says will be “reminiscent of the old days, when parish halls were the center of social and family life, and talent and variety shows were regular events.”

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Only Steps Forward: Create a regional economic engine, not just one city

By Jonathan P. LaBonte

Mayor of Auburn

As the drum beat for and against a merger of the cities Lewiston and Auburn continues, it is likely key themes will emerge in both camps to make their case.

What I have heard and read from the Joint Charter Commission to date is a message about the economic stagnation of the two cities over the last generation or more and that an aging and declining workforce requires us to make a bold new move. In their pitch, of course, that’s to merge the cities.

One data point that is used is the GDP, or gross domestic product, of the Lewiston-Auburn metro area. This number is a measure of the size of the economy across a series of sectors, and the most recent data from 2015 shows the Lewiston-Auburn economy shrinking by 2.5%.

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Enough is Enough: What has been taught for decades is now changing

By Robert E. Macdonald

Mayor of Lewiston

A few weeks ago, Governor Paul R. LePage in his weekly call into Bangor’s WVOM radio station, was asked about Georgia Congressman John Lewis’s boycotting of President of Donald Trump’s Inauguration. It was Lewis’s personal opinion that duly elected Republican President Trump is not “a legitimate President.”

Governor LePage went on to express his dismay with Congressman Lewis, pointing out that President Lincoln freed the slaves and Presidents Hayes and Grant were opposed to Jim Crowe laws. This created a firestorm.

Progressive history college professors rushed to defend Lewis’s action, belittling Governor LePage’s understanding of American history. The press immediately piled onto the criticism taking the side of their cohorts in academia.

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Families come out for St. Dom’s Winter Carnival

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Students raced down the sliding hill on cardboard creations of their own design.

Current students, school families, community members, and Bishop Robert P. Deeley gathered at Saint Dominic Academy’s Auburn campus recently for the school’s first-ever Winter Carnival, kicking off the academy’s observance of Catholic Schools Week. The carnival included a variety of outdoor and indoor activities, from snowshoeing and cross-country skiing to snowflake making and games of Chutes & Ladders.

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CMMC goes red for women’s heart health

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The staff at Central Maine Medical Center wore red on Friday, February 3 to help raise awareness of heart disease in women. “Go Red for Women Day” is part of National Heart Month, observed every February to help educate Americans on the importance of heart health.

 

Skelton Taintor & Abbott names scholarship recipient

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Here with scholarship award recipient Khadija Haji are (from l.) Skelton Taintor & Abbott Shareholder-Directors Ronald Lebel and Darcie Beaudin and Associate Attorney Jon Plourde.

Skelton Taintor & Abbott has announced that the fourth recipient of the annual Skelton, Taintor & Abbott-Lewiston High School Mock Trial Team MVP Scholarship Award is Khadija Haji. As the recipient of the Most Valiant Player award, she will receive a $1,000 college scholarship from the law firm.

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Franco Collection presents French-language discussion on immigration

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The panel will consist of five Francophone Africans who, through a local French Club, meet twice weekly with local Franco-Americans to compare heritages.

The Franco-American Collection at USM’s Lewiston-Auburn College will present a French-language panel discussion on “Challenges Facing New Immigrants to Local Areas” on Tuesday, February 14 from 4 to 5 p.m. The event is free and open to the public. Light refreshments will be served.

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Governor’s Address: Marijuana bill reveals politics at its worst

While politicians were scrambling to pass a moratorium on marijuana legalization, their credibility went up in smoke.

Dear Maine Taxpayer,

As usual, politicians in Augusta waited until the last minute to pass legislation on a very important issue. They approved a bill allowing Mainers to possess and grow marijuana, but they put a moratorium on buying and selling it until rules are developed to regulate retail sales.

The original legislation directs the Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry to implement the regulations and enforcement of recreational marijuana. But ACF does not have the manpower or expertise to create and enforce these regulations. It would cost several million dollars for ACF to do this.

We have been saying since November that oversight should be transferred from ACF to the Bureau of Alcoholic Beverages and Lottery Operations (BABLO). BABLO already has the expertise to create the rules and manage licensing and enforcement. It would cost $1.5 million for BABLO to do this.

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