Letters to the editor — The Camden Herald

Oct 13, 2016

This isn't about you

This is about your children and grandchildren, your town, state and country. Please vote knowing your vote is urgent. And that a vote for anyone but one of the two major candidates, or no vote at all, is a vote for Trump. That is your choice.

Whoever wins, at least let us know that a clear majority have voted for that person.

If you want change, Trump won't provide it. He will cut taxes to the very rich, which is what George Bush did which brought about the huge budget deficit (President Clinton left a surplus) and the crash of 2008, as well as the spiraling inflation which robbed so many of jobs and previous gains. Trump is the Wstablishment, far more than Clinton. Think about it.

We have had some fine Republicans in the past. This year, just think carefully.

What you decide matters.

Coralllie Murray


MCSW meetings

Over the next month and into November, as manager of your Mid-Coast Solid Waste transfer facility, I and a representative of ecomaine will be meeting with the public and our member Select Boards to discuss the benefits of a “yes” vote on Nov. 8 for the proposed ecomaine contract recommended by the Board of Mid-Coast Solid Waste. This proposal evolved as a compromise after voters in three of our four towns turned down a 20-year commitment with ecomaine. The compromise provides a sufficient level of surety to those on both sides of the issue. The result is a three-year contract with two one year re-up options, which would allow MCSW to evaluate the performance and viability of other proposed options which may be available to us at the end of this term in Hampden. This compromise also protects MCSW from the risks so frequently associated with startup projects and it does so at the least overall cost of all the proposals on the table. This is achieved by a tip fee of $57.85 per ton, the lowest tip fee offered by 11 vendors albeit for a limited period. Even with additional hauling requirements during the term of this contract, our cost would be the lowest possible should we approve working with ecomaine for our waste processing needs as recommended.

ecomaine has been reducing the volume of the trash it processes by 90 percent while generating electricity in its waste-to-energy facility since 1989. It generates enough electricity to power its operations plus up to 15,000 homes annually. The company also operates single-sort recycling facility in Portland near the jetport. Originally founded under the Regional Waste Systems (RWS) in 1976, the community-owned and operated 501(c)3 nonprofit was re-organized and renamed to ecomaine 10 years ago to better reflect its ISO 14001 certified environmental commitment and mission. That mission remains today: to provide comprehensive long-term solid waste solutions in a safe, environmentally responsible, economically sound manner, and be a leader in raising public awareness of sustainable waste management strategies. Since then, ecomaine’s extensive education and outreach programming has become a cornerstone service for schools, transfer facility operators, businesses, and member community residents alike. MCSW will be able to avail itself to all of ecomaine’s programs; including application for school recycling grants valued at up to $5,000 each, participation in the ecomaine eco-excellence awards, waste-reduction programs in schools, facility tours, and more.

Please plan to attend any of the following scheduled meetings in each of our four towns: Monday, Oct. 24, at 6 p.m. Lincolnville Town Office; Tuesday, Oct. 25, at 6 p.m. at Hope Town Office; Tuesday, Nov. 1, at 6:30 p.m. in the Washington Street Conference Room at the Camden Opera House. Rockport's meeting was held Oct. 11.

If you or your organization would prefer another time or venue, please call me at 236-2467 to discuss. Thank you very much for educating yourself on this matter. I believe you will find the compromise reached is in the greatest good for our community.

James Guerra, manager

Mid-Coast Solid Waste Corporation


High energy, down to earth and smart

While the Maine Legislature moves at sluggish speed toward very little, there IS hope at the local level in District 95 (Warren, Hope, Appleton, and half of Union) for fresh thinking and leadership — and that is Ellie Goldberg!

Ellie is a mature intellect, abundant in common sense. She brings years of legislative experience and know-how to the job as founder of the Maine Children’s Alliance, which she ran for 17 years. In that capacity, she advocated on behalf of Maine’s children at both the state and federal level — and succeeded in establishing programs and funding for the state’s most vulnerable population.

Ellie easily grasps the inter-connectedness between rising property taxes, the reduction of state funding of education, and revenue sharing. She understands the serious challenges of climate change statewide.

She understands the word “compromise”, and knows without it nothing in Augusta can be accomplished. She is a Clean Election candidate.

She is high energy, down-to-earth, and smart: just the very type we desperately need in Augusta!

Pease consider joining us in sending the best possible person to the Legislature to represent our District 95.

Pen and Bev Williamson


Candidate with experience

I am excited to be able to vote for David Emery for the Maine State Senate District 12. With Dave's extensive background in government, both state and federal, he will be ready on day one to start working on issues facing our state.

We need a senator with a level head who can help the parties to work together. Dave is that person.I know he will work for all, regardless of party affiliation.

Please join me in voting on Nov. 8 for David Emery, State Senator for Knox County.

Christine Savage

Former State Senator


Support Miramant's re-election bid

I am writing to add my support to our current state senator’s bid for re-election. Sen. Dave Miramant has worked tirelessly for his constituents in Knox County to represent us in a way that helps all Knox County residents. Sen. Miramant was first a state representative and then our senator, and he has made significant contributions to our state government. He’s not afraid to take on tough issues, whether they involve the governor’s recent outburst or working to reduce the tax burden faced by small businesses, working class and middle class residents of Knox County. He will continue to protect our state’s marine resources and improve education. Sen. Miramant will work to help improve school district ratings so that Mainers can be competitive with students from other states.

Sen. Miramant listens to his constituents. I have emailed him on several occasions and received personal emails from him in return. He has encouraged me to keep in touch with him at any time. He addressed the issues I raised to my satisfaction. This is what I want in a state senator — accountability and interest in serving the people of his district to solve problems and address complicated issues.

Sen. Miramant will continue to develop a thriving economy for all Mainers; to improve an education system that is currently not competitive with other states; to improve the environment for future generations by investing in alternative energies and energy efficiency; and to continue his efforts to obtain property tax relief for Mainers. He deserves another term in the Senate, and my family will be voting for him on Election Day. It’s encouraging to have a state senator who listens to his constituents and whose only interest is in protecting our interests. Sen. Miramant deserves your vote.

Ronna Lambiasi DeLoe


Complacency is destroying us

In less than a month, American voters will go to the polls and select their choice of who will become the 45th President of the United States of America, the most powerful office in the world.

Our founders recognized early on that the perfect foundation for a good government could only come through the blessings of God. But once again, it is quite obvious that we have allowed our government, our courts, our churches and ourselves to succumb to a cancerous deterioration of our founding Christian principles.

We see it every day through the TV lens, the constant continual moral decay that will eventually bring us to a course that knows no redemption.

America, our complacency is destroying us.

Why aren’t professing Christians speaking up? Isn’t it time for the body of Christ to awaken from its apathy and act responsibly?

If we fail to express our opinions, others will be more than happy to make decisions for us. Let us never forget that we are a government, “Of the People, by the People and for the People.”

It says in II Tim. 4:3---“For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths.”

Less than 60 percent of eligible Christians actually vote or are even registered to vote.

Christians, We need to get involved!

Gene V. Graves


Support the library

I visited the Rockport library one recent Saturday afternoon and was happy to see several families, adults, children, and teens, all of whom spent quite a bit of time enthusiastically browsing and selecting titles which suited their interests. I was taken back to my childhood in Maplewood, N.J., where my friends and I spent hours during the summer vacation and on weekends browsing the stacks, reading aloud to each other, and sharing new titles we’d discovered. As at Rockport’s library, Maplewood’s staff was very helpful, welcoming, and friendly, especially with the young adults, each of whom left our library with an armful of books. I attribute my lifelong love of reading to the caring attention I received from this thoughtful group of adults, and, as an educator of some 40 years, I know that the respect and support given by our staff will have only the most positive influence on the young people of Rockport.

I encourage you to vote in favor of the bond which will help pay for our new library and (if possible) to consider making a donation to help raise the rest of the funds needed. Not only will it support all or current patrons, but will help to build for the future of Rockport. It will be money well spent for the future of our town and its children.

Peter Chamberlain


Sheriff's association opposes Question 3

The undersigned Sheriffs in the state of Maine announce our formal opposition to Question 3, a ballot initiative expanding firearm background checks that will appear on the ballot this fall.

We strongly believe the people of Maine should know that the Chief Law Enforcement Officer from 12 of the 16 counties who are elected to protect your families and homes do not support the Question 3 ballot initiative. This measure will do nothing to stop evil people from getting their hands on guns. In fact all relevant data indicates that criminals acquire firearms through theft and the black market. This initiative will not stop the reoccurring pattern.

We live in one of the safest states in the country and strongly believe no provisions in this legislation would reduce gun violence or crime in Maine. In fact, Question 3 is unenforceable, confusing, poorly written and threatens to make law-abiding gun owners into criminals for simply loaning a firearm to a friend. By and large, the people who commit crimes with firearms are not concerned with good citizenship, compliance with existing law and are repeat offenders. It’s the law-abiding citizens who comply with gun laws that are the most affected by arbitrary gun laws and will be most affected by Question 3.

As anyone who has gone through the process to legally obtain a firearm in Maine knows, there is no dearth of existing laws that regulate the sale, purchase, and transfer of firearms. As members of the law enforcement community, we support public policy that targets criminals and lends to the full prosecution of those individuals under the law. We will continue to develop and promote worthwhile crime fighting proposals and effective firearm laws at all levels of government. We cannot, however, support Question 3.

Androscoggin County Sheriff Eric Samson, Aroostook County Sheriff Darrell O. Crandall, Hancock County Sheriff Scott Kane, Knox County Sheriff Donna Dennison, Franklin County Sheriff Scott Nichols, Oxford County Sheriff Wayne J. Gallant, Penobscot County Sheriff Troy Morton, Piscataquis County Sheriff John J. Goggin, Somerset County Sheriff Dale Lancaster, Waldo County Sheriff Jeffrey C. Trafton, Washington County Sheriff Barry Curtis, and York County Sheriff William King.

See if for yourself

As I took my first steps , the Trail beckoned me on, curving through the woods, to high above the waters edge, the soft surf on the rocky beach below, occasional views of the medical center but mostly up slope and down dale meandering through the delight of the Maine coast.

This experience of less than an hour is available to us all, every day, whenever we want, made possible by the creative thoughtfulness and financial support of a broad range of people and businesses right here in the neighborhood. Donors of the bridges and the nine fitness stations are noted along the way and I understand the employees of Pen Bay Medical Center stepped up with a large part of the financial support. I commend and thank all those who made this adventure sanctuary happen. Its called The Community Wellness Trail.

Moving deeper into the sensory, comfortable walking connection to the earth, salty air, upbeat conversations with fellow hikers, woodland smells, increased heart rate; the significance of this new gift to our community grew in me.

Think of it: the grounds of a hospital being offered to the community, contributing to our health and well-being by leading us into and through the inspiration and abundant healing influence of nature.

The main entrance is across Route 1 from Cedarworks in Rockport with several other access points from the parking areas at Pen Bay Medical Center.

Walking the wood-chopped and grassy way for 1.6 miles gave me pleasure, stimulation, a good work-out, refreshment, enrichment and joy.

But, as Rob McCall of The Awanadjo Almanack says, don't take my word for it, go out and see for yourself.

Tom Hopps


In support of Miramant

I want to talk to you about Dave Miramant in his capacity as a pilot and how it relates to his position as State Senator. I had the pleasure of flying for a few years with Dave as his second in command. Dave was a vastly more experienced pilot than I was, so I was eager to learn from him. Dave very easily and completely communicated the information I needed to become a better pilot. If I started to make a mistake Dave had the necessary correction ready, always in a level, professional manner. I see him communicating with his fellow legislators, of both parties, in the same level, professional manner.

His attention and preparation to everything necessary to complete a flight successfully was exceptional. He took the time to learn and understand the needs of his passengers as well as how the plane operates. His preparation was as if people's lives depended upon him — and they did. Dave takes this same level of dedication and preparation to his work in the State Senate.

He and I don't agree on every issue, but I truly believe he listens to and considers my opinion, and he always explains his position thoroughly.

Please join me in voting for Sen. Dave Miramant for State Senator.

John Newcomb

St. George

Gun safety and public safety

A gun in the hands of a criminal is a public safety and public health issue. When someone uses a gun to rob a convenience store, shoot a spouse or partner, rob your home or shoot a rival gang member it’s a danger to everyone around. Shouldn’t we do everything we can to keep guns out of the hands of these criminals? As Ed Tolan, Falmouth Police Chief and the president of the Maine Chiefs of Police Association said, “It’s indisputable that background checks work." He cited hard data that “federal background checks conducted on gun sales at licensed firearms dealers... stopped more than 5,500 gun sales to dangerous people in Maine” since 1998. Unfortunately, these background checks currently only happen if you purchase a gun at a licensed gun shop. Under current Maine law, background checks are not yet required if the sale takes place at most gun shows, through a classified ad or online. Referendum No. 3 fixes these loopholes by requiring a background check on all gun sales with reasonable exceptions for family members, hunting, self defense, lawful competitions and shooting range activities. Let’s put public safety first and make it much harder for criminals to get a gun. Please vote yes on Nov. 8 for referendum No. 3. It might just save the life of a friend or family member.

Roy Hitchings


On Sunday it rained

on Sunday it rained. It didn’t sprinkle, or fog, or mist, or tease. It rained pretty much all day. My daughter wished she were in California. I loved being right here.  I loved the smell. the chill. the feel of it on head and shoulders. the inconvenience. and most of all, I loved the sound. The pitter or it. The gurgle in the downspouts.

I remember it used to do this every three days or so. We were used to it. Rain asked us the question: do you have an inner life? do you have a good book? do you have a friend and a pot of tea? do you have a fireplace?

Here, in my dotage, i hardly have politics. I have climatics. I want rain to keep falling.  I want the heated and dried earth to drink, to refresh, to imbibe, to slurp this heaven-sent gift. May it be so.

Jory Squibb


Put Ellie to work for us

I’m a builder and a businessman. When it comes to elections I take a practical approach to voting for a candidate. I choose the person who can best represent me and my values in Augusta or Washington, D.C. My concerns are family, community, business, and the environment. Not separately but all together as they are interdependent. That is why I am asking my neighbors in House District 95 (Warren, Hope, Appleton, and part of Union) to join me in voting for Ellie Goldberg. Ellie understands that we all benefit from giving our children a good education, that we must find a way to deliver reasonable healthcare to our neighbors, that a decent environment is not only important for our health, it is critical to many of our businesses and way of life. She knows how to listen, learn, and balance different points of view. Ellie has run a couple of businesses and a major non-profit. She is respected statewide for founding and running one of Maine’s most influential organizations, the Maine Children’s Alliance. Now that Ellie is retired it is our opportunity to put her to work for us. Please join me in voting for Ellie Goldberg on Nov. 8, we shall all be the beneficiaries!

Richard Lee,


Casas is supportive of small businesses

I wanted to let the citizens of District 94 — Camden, Rockport and Islesboro — know why I'll be voting for Owen Casas on Nov. 8. I've known Marci Casas for over 25 years and I got to know her husband Owen a few years back as our children played together at mutual friends. We instantly connected by "talking shop" about masonry, construction and landscaping, trades we both work in. Getting to know him better over time, I realized we shared similar values found in a lot of people around here: hard work, commitment and honesty.

I've known Owen to be supportive of small businesses and eager to see what he could do to help them grow so they could put more locals to work. During all the conversations we have had over many kids birthdays and community events, I've never seen him aggravated in discussion or disrespectful with others. I know Owen Casas will represent us well and will do the hard work of finding a logical approach that is truly independent. I would encourage everyone to send this local man to Augusta, where his knowledge, skills and experience will serve our community and state well.

Craig Mitchell


A true patriot

Hello, I'm Chief Petty Officer Matthew Deane and I've served for 18 years in the United States Coast Guard. In 2010, I received orders to come home to Maine, where I served as First Lieutenant on the Thunder Bay out of Rockland. It was then that I got to know Owen Casas. Although we sometimes have differences of opinion on politics, Owen and I have a shared experience of serving our country in uniform. To me, that means Owen is always someone I can count on if I need a hand. Regardless of whether it is a home construction project, farm work, or a veterans issue, Owen is there. When Thunder Bay shipped out to The Great Lakes for six months to break ice, there were a handful of family members there to say good bye. Owen was there too, in the cold, giving us a send off. He knew what it was like to ship off away from friends and family for months in service of country and wanted to return the favor.

I know a vote for Owen Casas means a vote for a true patriot. It is a vote for someone who values service to others and knows the struggles that our men and women in uniform face every day. Owen is committed to doing the right thing and I hope you do the right thing and vote for him on Nov. 8.

Matthew Deane


Casas will bring cooperation to Augusta

I am writing to endorse Owen Casas for our Representative for House District 94. I have known Owen for many years and have seen and experienced his hard work and dedication. One of many things I respect most is Owen's pride and perspective as a military veteran. He will bring a vision from a point of view few of us have but appreciate.

I have also worked with Owen as a Select Board peer, and though we served on two different boards, we met several times as boards to discuss our common interests for our communities, collaborating agreements that are paving the way for improving services and costing. I feel that Owen can bring this spirit of cooperation in his representation of our district in Augusta.

I like the fact that Owen is local, having lived here, learned here, put his family stake here. Owen knows our way of life and has talked with a huge cross section of residents. This will lead to a practical approach, and I believe a balanced view of our needs, not just a select sampling.

Lastly, the independence of not only his political run, but Owen’s true belief that being independent represents the ability to seek the approach that may be out of the political mainstream. Bringing a fresh approach and thoughtfully challenging the day-to-day will be refreshing.

Whether you are voting early, or on voting day, I am recommending Owen as our representative.

Martin Cates


A candidate we can all be proud of

My son, Owen Casas, is running for the state legislature in District 94, as an Independent candidate. I am very proud of him for doing this, against odds which to many seem formidable.

It may seem unusual for someone to declare publicly why they think their family member should merit a person's vote, as it might seem that they are simply biased in favor of their own. However, looked at in another way, who would know a person's heart and mind better than a close family member?

Owen has proved himself to me and to others who know him well, as an honest and sincere person who is running for public office, not based on any personal agenda nor self-serving interest, but authentically and truly for the opportunity to serve his community and to represent the people in his district. He is not tied to any political party or special interest groups but is charting an independent course based on real-life solutions to problems faced by people like those he has grown up with in Midcoast Maine.

Over the past years Owen has served his country as a U.S. Marine in Iraq, has labored in the local fishing industry, has obtained a degree at the University of Maine on the GI Bill, has served on the Rockport Select Board, and has married and had three children. These diverse experiences have matured him and taught him many life lessons, and I believe have prepared him to be uniquely qualified to serve all the people of the Midcoast area, no matter their circumstances, financial conditions or level of education.

I have observed many examples of personal integrity, of personal bravery and of selfless service to others, both within our family circle and within the larger circle of the Midcoast Maine community.

On a very personal note, Owen recently saved me from a potentially deadly situation when my kayak was caught in high wind and waves on Moosehead Lake and overturned. Without hesitation or concern for his own safety he and one of his brothers took their kayaks out to find me and stayed with me while awaiting rescue from a larger boat which had been dispatched to search for me. His concern for me was converted into immediate action. This is typical of Owen's response to a problem. He will convert his concern for others into immediate and beneficial action.

I am sure that these traits of character, which I know well, will be applied to his service in the Maine House of Representatives if the good people of District 94 will see fit to elect him on November 8th.

Libby Casas


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