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February 15, 2018

Threatening message that prompted SAD 31 closure deemed a hoax

HOWLAND – A threatening message that prompted School Administrative District 31 to cancel classes on Feb. 7 was determined to be a hoax, according to district officials and state police. The threat was apparently also sent to other schools in Maine and even as far away as Florida, according to police and media reports. According to a Feb. 7 posting on the Penobscot Valley High School and Hichborn MIddle School Facebook page, students were asked not to attend school on that day due to the receipt of a threatening message by district officials.


Future of LP&T site discussed at community forum

LINCOLN - What do residents want from the former Lincoln Pulp and Tissue site? Is it an asset that holds value to the town? Those were two driving points behind a special meeting hosted by the town and Attorney Andy Hamilton of Eaton Peabody and Kelly Race Tuesday night at the Region III building. The first meeting of a possible series of events as the property moves through the liquidation process. “We’re going to take the top off the Lincoln Pulp and Tissue site tonight,” Hamilton said to a crowd of 30 people, including town councilors and prominent business owners.


Howland selectmen vote to have 3 Main Street building demolished

HOWLAND –  Selectmen Monday voted Monday to have the 3 Main Street building evacuated and demolished. Separately, the board also approved a non-binding resolution to work with Matthew Valentin, one of the troublesome building's owners, to redevelop the property after the current building is torn down and its foundation filled in. According to the order, Matthew Valentin, Dennis A. Valentin-Kelehar and Diamond Kelaher have 14 days to secure the building, or else the town will secure the building. Also, the Valentin-Kelahers must either demolish the building "or cause" to have the 3 Main Street building torn down, within 30 days after being served with the town's order, including having all trash, debris and other items removed.


Resounding “no” to proposed graffiti wall

LINCOLN - Hate speech and inappropriate images that led to one city tearing down its community graffiti wall led the town council to unanimously vote against a similar project proposed for Lincoln. The proposal, first made in December of 2016 by Victoria Garnett, was brought again before the council Monday after she had not gotten a response from either the former town manager or any of the council members. Originally, she proposed the wall be erected behind Hanaford’s by the veterans memorial. Monday, she asked the town give permission to place it by the fence at the Ballard Hill Community Center.


Lincoln Public Works in midst of one of worst winters for roads

HOWLAND and LINCOLN - Public Works Director Joey Dunn of Howland has just come off a 20-hour shift, thanks to a snow and ice storm that dropped six-inches of mess on the roads. This winter, he and his team, now comprised of 80-year-old Danny Dunn and 64-year-old Glendon Faloon as the regular plow drivers have moved on to other things, have been averaging between 60 and 70 hours a week as they struggle to keep ahead of the 11 storms the area has been hit with this season. In Lincoln, Director David Lloyd is in the same position, as even after the storm passes, the clean up of the streets and parking lots last five days after the plowing stops. “Sometimes it is pretty hectic,” Lloyd said. “This is one of the worst years I have seen in the last four, five or six years.”


Sunday fire shuts down local eatery indefinitely

LINCOLN - A popular in-town restaurant is now closed until further notice after a Sunday morning fire heavily damaged Gillmor’s Beef and Ale. Firefighters from three communities converged on the scene at 8:11 a.m. after an employee reported they could not enter the building due to smoke. “There was a thin light brown smoke in the entry,” Captain Cory Stratton of the Lincoln Fire Department said. He said as firefighters entered the kitchen, the smoke became thicker and darker. The unnamed employee reported a hot plate in the kitchen may have been the cause, however firefighters on the initial attack discovered flames in the walls as well as burning into the cellar and ceiling above the kitchen.


False name fails to fool police in warrant arrest

LINCOLN - Lincoln Police Officer Seth Burnes is not a stupid man. Last year, his intuition led to the arrest of a woman allegedly using an elderly dementia patient to steal from Walmart. So when a suspect in a complaint last week attempted to throw he and Officer Glenn Graef off by using a fake name, the ruse was short-lived. Bret Libby, 21, a transient out of Bangor, was arrested last Thursday, February 8, at the Briarwood Motel shortly before 11 p.m. for two warrants out of Bangor. Burnes and Graef were investigating a complaint made by a third party of a man who had allegedly refused to leave and was currently sitting in a vehicle with an unidentified woman.


Howland residents hear update on flood plain maps

HOWLAND – The town's final flood plain maps have not been completed, according to two people who have been working on the matter for months. Maps based on preliminary date, though, show that seven properties will be placed in the 100 year flood plain, while another 17 will be removed, according to information provided at Monday's selectmen's meeting.


Enfield, Cold Stream Pond continue work on boathouse solution

ENFIELD – Town and an association of Cold Stream Pond leaders continue to try and work out a solution to getting boats into and out of an outlet near the Sargent family boathouse. Town Manager Theresa Thurlow said Tuesday that the town and members of a CSP association are in "preliminary stages" for finding a solution to help launch and take out large boats in the boathouse area of the lake, she said.


People of Passadumkeag mad about mashed mailboxes

PASSADUMKEAG - The regular snow and ice storms, and subsequent frequent trips by the snow plow, have driven some residents to complain about the continues destruction of their mailboxes. That was the big topic of last Wednesday, February 7, Selectman’s Meeting, which ironically was held in the midst of yet another treacherous ice and snow storm. Selectman Todd Rogers said he has been getting several complaints, and even had a confrontation with one of the drivers prior to the meeting.


LignaCLT first to be on board with Our Katahdin

BANGOR AND MILLINOCKET—It’s a day that has been worked on behind the scenes for months now and it is at last ready for an announcement to the world. LignaCLT, LLC is pleased to announce they will become the first Maine-based manufacturing company of innovative Cross Laminated Timber (CLT) and other mass timber products in our state, according to a press announcement that took place at Husson University’s Richard E. Dyke Center for Family Business in Bangor on Tuesday, February 13. The newest business venture will locate its facility on the former Great Northern Paper Company mill site currently owned by Our Katahdin. This collaboration is expected to bring 100 direct jobs to the Katahdin region and utilize one of the natural resources: Maine timber.


Romano gets six months in jail for alleged assault on Millinocket police officer, other charges

MILLINOCKET/BANGOR—A 46-year old East Millinocket man was sentenced to six months in jail after pleading no contest to multiple charges stemming from an alleged assault last year on a Millinocket police officer. Ra Romano entered no contest pleas to charges of assault, disorderly conduct and obstructing a public way in connection with the Oct. 18 incident when he allegedly attacked Officer Marty Legassey of the Millinocket Police Department including using the officer’s Taser against him, according to Penobscot County District Attorney R. Christopher Almy. Romano also entered a no contest plea to one count of criminal mischief, a charge that stemmed from when he destroyed a television monitor used for video conferences with a judge while he was incarcerated at Penobscot County Jail in Bangor. In addition to six months in jail, Romano was ordered to pay $700 in restitution to the jail as part of the plea agreement, according to Almy.


Board okays sand purchase, fire truck almost ready

MEDWAY – After speaking with Public Works Director Greg Hale, selectmen agreed to use money in a public works reserve account to purchase 800 yards of sand to get the town through the rest of the winter season. By using the money already in the reserve, approximately $8,700 according to Administrative Assistant Kathy Lee, the town forgoes the need and cost of a special town meeting and can just purchase the sand outright and have it available immediately.


Man accused of buying alcohol for 14-year old to celebrate his birthday

MILLINOCKET—A 21-year old Millinocket man was charged last week with furnishing liquor to a minor after he allegedly purchased a half gallon of coffee brandy for a local 14-year old boy who wanted to drink to celebrate his birthday. Daniel Meredith was summonsed to appear April 4 in Millinocket District Court to answer to the charge stemming from the incident that was investigated by Sgt. Gary Lakeman of the Millinocket Police Department. According to information provided by Millinocket Deputy Police Chief Janet Theriault, the incident was reported around 11:30 p.m. Feb. 6 when a Millinocket resident indicated that one day earlier his 14-year old son consumed alcohol that was allegedly provided by Meredith. The family became aware of the alleged alcohol consumption on Feb. 5 when a sibling of the 14-year old called advising the teen was drunk, sick and needed someone to pick him up after he drank alcohol allegedly purchased by Meredith.


County teen busted for alleged false plates after buying vehicle

MEDWAY—A 17-year old male from Aroostook County who was driving in Medway in a vehicle he recently purchased was charged by police with attaching false plates following a traffic stop. The teen from Houlton was summonsed to appear March 7 in Millinocket District Court on the charge stemming from a recent traffic stop conducted by Corporal Brad Fitzgerald of the East Millinocket Police Department.


Erratic vehicle leads police to Medway men allegedly in possession of marijuana

MEDWAY—An erratically operating vehicle and ensuing traffic stop led East Millinocket police to two men allegedly in possession of marijuana. Michael Daigle, 20, and Nicholas Federico, 20, both of Medway, were each summonsed to appear April 4 in Millinocket District Court on one count of possession of a useable amount of marijuana stemming from the Feb. 4 incident.


Man charged after German Shepherd jumps at car, attacks another dog

MILLINOCKET—A 60-year old Millinocket man is facing two charges after his German Shepherd allegedly jumped at a vehicle and attacked another dog during separate incidents on the same day earlier this month. Larry Pelletier was charged with one count each of dog at large and keeping a dangerous dog stemming from the alleged incidents that took place during the morning of Feb. 1.


Planning board working on licenses, permits for approval

MEDWAY - With only three members of the Medway Planning Board in attendance at the monthly meeting last week, board members didn’t want to take up any new business or review the ordinances that had been planned. Instead, Chairman Galen Hale and Secretary Linda Madore presented draft ordinances they had written that gives permission to the town and planning board to review and issue commercial building permits and commercial business licenses. These are two areas that the board has focused on since the new group started meeting last fall. Hale first suggested the business licenses as a way to keep track of the number and types of businesses in Medway and it’s also a way to keep track of taxable property.


Medway school board approve KVHC deal; conditional education grant

MEDWAY—The Medway school board approved a contract for services with Katahdin Valley Health Center (KVHC) at its regular meeting on Monday, February 12. The agreement by KVHC and the board will provide comprehensive primary, dental and behavioral health care within its designate service area, which now includes Medway after the board approved by a 4-0 vote. Gene LaPorte was absent. Medway School Department staff will assist parents in completing the registration forms necessary before services can be officially offered by KVHC. Sixteen school districts fall within the parameters of KVHC’s jurisdiction through a grant and extend from Ashland to Milo. East Millinocket approved a similar contract with KVHC on February 5 and now Medway joins that group after approving the contract.


Board adopts cell phone policy, office cleaner next

MEDWAY – Employees of the Town of Medway will now need to sign off on a new cell phone policy adopted by selectmen Monday night. The policy is the end result of a discussion board members had several weeks ago when Selectman Emery “Jeff” Lee IV asked if the town had a policy after he observed a town employee talking on a cell phone while driving in a town vehicle. Concerns about the driver, the public and town liability came to mind.


Medway updates concussion policy

MEDWAY—Playing sports can cause injuries: some are not serious or life-threatening, while others can indeed cause serious damage that can potentially affect an athlete’s life and wellbeing. One of the most difficult injuries to understand is the concussion. Concussions have been happening to athletes in sports since probably the first accidental head bump. Losing consciousness is one thing, but realizing the effects of a head trauma and what it means to an individual’s balance, motor skills, and cognitive process is something that doctors are beginning to understand: it’s more serious than previously thought.


Planning board recommends no to marijuana retail

MILLINOCKET—After months of gathering information to learn about marijuana’s pros and cons, and hearing from the public on the matter of retail and recreational marijuana, the Planning Board made its recommendations to the Town Council at its regular meeting on Thursday, February 8. In the Manager’s Report, John Davis relayed the information to council members from a letter by Planning Board Chairman Anthony Filauro in which Filauro’s findings suggest that the retail of marijuana may not be good business for the town. “At a meeting of the Planning Board held on January 23, it was voted by a 4 to 1 margin, to recommend that the Town Council not allow recreational use marijuana enterprises to operate in the Town of Millinocket,” Filauro wrote in a letter dated January 27, 2018.