News

Mainers react to Hobby Lobby decision


PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- The controversial, and complicated Supreme Court ruling in the Hobby Lobby case may not have much of an impact in Maine, according to the ACLU of Maine.

In a 5-4 decision, the court ruled certain for-profit businesses may opt out of contraception mandate in the Affordable Care Act.

Companies, such as Hobby Lobby, challenged the Affordable Care Act, stating the contraception mandate violated religious freedom.

Maine has had a contraception mandate since 1999, and according to the Alison Beyea, Executive Director of the ACLU of Maine, this Supreme Court ruling won't affect it.

Man runs through Portland pulling out plants and flowers


PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- A Portland police officer said around 2:30am, a man ran around town pulling up flowers and plants.

Damage could be seen on Gray, Park, and Spring Streets. The police officer NEWS CENTER spoke to said the man may have been on drugs. The suspect also smashed his head into the Trolley Building on Congress Street.

Portland PD has not released details about the suspect.


Portland to install 38 new speed bumps


PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- The city of Portland is installing 38 new speed bumps in an effort to get drivers to slow down when traveling through residential neighborhoods.

Along with the speed bumps, the city is also installing a number of four-way stops and other traffic calming measures. The project will start in July and take a couple of months to complete. Ten roads that connect Brighton Avenue to Congress Street in Portland will be altered.

The project will cost more than $300,000 and will be paid for through a grant from the federal Economic Development Administration and matching funds from the developer of the Thompson's Point complex.


Plane lands safely at PWM after pilot calls in issue


PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- A plane with 54 people on board landed safely Friday night at the Portland Jetport after the pilot called in an emergency to the jetport tower.

US Airways flight 4090 left Philadelphia shortly before 7pm bound for Portland. On approach, the pilot called in to report an issue with the plane's flaps.

Fire crews from around Greater Portland were called in to respond, but the plane landed without incident. The plane is listed as a CRJ 200.

After being briefly inspected, the plane was deemed safe and made its return flight back to Philadelphia.


Activists cheer new effort to combat ocean acidification


PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- Maine scientists, shellfish farmers, and politicians are joining forces to deal with what they say is a major change in the waters of the Maine coast. They say the changing climate is causing sea water to become more acidic, and that ocean acidification poses a real threat to Maine's shellfish.

According to a video explanation prepared by NOAA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, ocean acidification is caused by increased carbon in the atmosphere, in the form of carbon dioxide, mixing with ocean water to form carbonic acid in the sea. That carbonic acid eventually results in lower pH levels in the ocean.

Researchers say more acidic water can damage the shells of clams, mussels and oysters, and even prevent them from growing and reproducing.

Portland announces free summer concert lineup


PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- The City of Portland announced the lineup for the 2014 Summer in the Parks Concerts series Wednesday. The outdoor concerts are held around the city in July and August and entrance is free.

Sunset Folk Series at the Western Prom

Wed., July 9 8:00 p.m. Gunther Brown

Wed., July 16 7:45 p.m. Darien Brahms

Wed., July 23 7:45 p.m. Roy Davis

Wed., July 30 7:30 p.m. Chris Ross

Wed., Aug. 6 7:30 p.m. Anna Lombard

Wed., Aug. 13 7:30 p.m. Teenage Songwriters: Ceili, Liam & Lily

Inclement weather will cancel Western Prom concerts. The concerts last about 40 minutes.

30-year Portland, Maine, city councilor to resign


PORTLAND, Maine (AP) - Former Portland, Maine, mayor Cheryl Leeman will not seek re-election to the city council she has served on for 30 years.

Leeman started working in public service in 1981 as a member of the Portland School Committee and was elected to the City Council three years later. She has been mayor twice. She also served for 18 years as an aide to former U.S. Sen. Olympia Snowe.

Leeman is the founder of the East Deering Neighborhood Association, which advocates for local issues. She says she plans to "revitalize the group so we will continue to have a voice" after she leaves office.