Letters to the editor, The Courier-Gazette
Let's work together
After your decision at the polls Nov. 6 to pursue other options for education in your town, I wanted to take this opportunity to present to you two ideas to address this important issue. I should have done this sooner in the process, and I apologize for that.
I enjoyed attending your public meeting recently, as I wanted to hear your concerns personally. I would like to work with you to discover an effective solution to your concerns, one that benefits every student in our district.
I have two proposals. And please remember I speak only for myself: I do not represent others members of the Regional School Unit 13 School Board in this. But please be assured I will work with them on a shared vision and solution that can come from your work.
First, I feel you should form a local education committee, as current law allows you to do.
20-A §1478. LOCAL SCHOOL COMMITTEES
1. Formation. A reorganization plan under section 1461 or a regional school unit board may authorize the formation of a local school committee for a member municipality established in accordance with chapter 111, subchapter 1.
I believe our two boards could work together effectively into the future to provide your students with the best quality education, something I know each teacher and staff person strives for every day at your school. Also, it is important to note this is an option for every town in our district, if they so choose.
Secondly, I think you should reformulate your eighth-grade proposal to create a "Magnet/EL 8th Grade" for any eighth-grader in our district to attend. Much like what was proposed in May of this year, this idea simply flips the requirement of all eighth-graders to attend Oceanside West unless they have obtained permission and been accepted to attend the SGS Magnet/EL program. And a magnet program like this could be extremely appealing to other eighth-graders in our district.
We can discuss the details of these two proposals later, but these are the main features. I hope you will consider them seriously. Please know I am available at anytime to work with you.
As fellow board member from your town, George Emery helped me understand that you have an amazing community here: fully committed to and engaged in the best education possible for your students. You all contribute greatly to our district now, and I don't want to lose you.
We are stronger together and weaker apart. Let's keep working together.
Remembering community leaders
When my wife Jan and I moved from Dover-Foxcroft to Camden back in 1998, my primary focus was my new professional role as the executive director of the, then named, Camden Area YMCA and now Penobscot Bay YMCA. As many will remember, the challenges were numerous for the Y and certainly within our Midcoast communities at that time. Many times that first-year many of my own challenges would require me to call upon my faith in God and to rely upon my inner desire to succeed with the many tasks at hand. One evening after celebrating my first Thanksgiving in the town of Camden I witnessed my first sense of community within the Midcoast region — the giant star on top of Mt. Battie. What a wonderful and inspirational sight that beautiful star provided on a dark and lonely evening. The challenges I was facing, along with many other people in the community, for the need to have a YMCA that would serve thousands of others throughout a much larger region and without the necessary financial resources was a tremendous burden. I, for one, will be ever so grateful for the work of the Camden Lions Club membership, especially individuals like Bob Oxton who maintain the daily vigilance of keeping the light burning every night and during all types of weather and adversity. This star brings my faith in God into something, that at times, I cannot explain. Each of us who benefit from this beacon during the holiday season probably see the star in a different and special way. One thing I can say is that when the star appears for my first sighting of the season, I feel at home and connected with my community.
This year when I come upon this spectacular lighted star, atop of Mt. Battie for the first-time and throughout the holidays, I will be reminded of three heroes of our community that have served each of us in many different ways over the years. These individuals, that I would call shining stars, shared the love of community and the people living within the Midcoast by sacrificing their time, talents and sometimes treasure, while making a difference that will be felt for generations to come. These individuals have passed on during 2012 and now have become part of my memory. A memory that will now be sparked by the light of a single star on top of Mt. Battie and made possible due to the efforts of dedicated community volunteers each night. I pray that others will join me this year, when seeing this star, and give thanks for the work of these three remarkable community leaders — Don Gross, Ken Bailey and Jeff Kuller.
Honored to serve
I would like to thank all those who took the time to vote on Election Day.
I have been honored to serve the people of House District 48 for the past four years and I look forward to the 126th Maine Legislature. I thank my opponent, Michael Collins, for running a positive campaign; and I salute all the candidates who put themselves out there.
And a special note of appreciation to my friend and neighbor Chris Rector who worked tirelessly for five terms and has done truly great work for the people of our region. His thoughtful, creative, and respectful service is a model for all of us.
Rep. Chuck Kruger
The placement of Sara Moore's letter to the editor in the Nov. 8 issue of The Courier-Gazette was hidden on page A11 under the fold of the paper where it probably was overlooked by many readers. It was important that the citizens of Union noted that Sara did not vote to approve changing the town's treasurer position from elected to appointed. The three-page letter to the Union citizens from the select board implied that Sara voted to have the treasurer's position appointed. This was in error and the citizens need to be aware of this fact. It was unfortunate that Sara's letter did not receive placement on page A4.
My name is Danny H. Favreau Sr. and I'm writing this letter becasue I want people to know about my experience at Pen Bay Medical Center.
I moved back to Rockland about two-and-a-half years ago, after being away for 18 years. Going back to when I was a kid growing up here, there was always a misconception about Pen Bay and the doctors, which I believe is not true. I would like people to know that, being away and exposed to several different hospitals, due to medical conditions, I can tell from experience, that Pen Bay is a good and caring hospital
Since I've been back, I had to have several major surgeries, all performed at Pen Bay. I have nothing but excellent praise about Dr. White, Dr. Coyle, Dr. Yetman, Dr. Geen, Dr. Olehnik and Dr. Scordino and their respective staff. I think they all are a good asset to Pen Bay and that they are very professional and exceptional at what they do, and in a small town like Rockland, we have made leaps and bounds for getting good professionals like them. I also would like to extend my gratitude and compliments to the emergency medical technicians, emergency room and special care unit, not forgetting the anesthesiologists and their respective nursing staff and all the personnel associated with the hospital. They all went above and beyond professionally and personally cared and concerned for my well being.
A big thank-you to the doctors and staff at Pen Bay
Danny H. Favreau Sr. and Family
Last month my daughters and I were planning for the unanticipated funeral of my wife, Patricia Chapman. When the funeral home representative asked which newspapers we wished to place an obituary in, we automatically named The Courier-Gazette and the Lincoln County News since Pat had lived in Waldoboro. We were surprised to hear that the Courier would charge up to $75 depending on the length of the obituary, whereas the Lincoln County News charged no fee.
As the publishers of The Courier-Gazette are no doubt aware, those grieving acutely do not haggle over money especially if they believe paying the fee will allow them to honor their loved one with a respectful summary of their life. When I received the Courier's final bill it was 50 percent higher than the quoted price of "up to $75." To say the least, the publishers of The Courier-Gazette should feel regretful for this greedy practice.
If one small town newspaper can charge no fee, why does the Courier need to charge more than a small fee for this public announcement?
[Editor's note: Courier Publications charges $9.95/column inch, plus an additional $10 if a photo is included with the obituary. Obituaries appear online, as well as in The Courier-Gazette and The Camden Herald.]
Give us a break
What does it take to take the commercials off TV? When half the cities across America floods and winds and many TV viewers are watching the newscasters addressing the public on how bad the storm is progressing and they stop and have about five commercials before going into details about the storm called Sandy. If the world was coming to an end, they still would have their commercials. Come on, give TV viewers a break. I believe news about a wind and rainstorm is more important than watching a commercial on TV. Mr. Businessman, give us a break.
Trekkers gives thanks
On behalf of the Trekkers staff, students, families and the Trekkers’ 2nd Annual Auction committee, I want to express my sincere gratitude to all the local businesses and individuals who helped make our Nov. 3 auction such a success. With the community’s support at this recent event, 70 Trekkers students raised money toward their program fees. The proceeds from the auction will help these students participate in an experiential learning programs this year — including life-changing expeditions, community service projects and adventure-based education.
We wish to thank the Owls Head Transportation Museum and their staff for providing such a wonderful venue for the auction and dessert buffet. Special thanks also go to John Bottero of Thomaston Place Auction Galleries for providing auctioneer services. Auction donations included items or services from the following area businesses, artists and individuals: A&A Rentals; Admiral's Buttons; 412; Agren Appliance; Amato's; Andy Jablonski; Annie Mahle and Schooner J. & E. Riggin; Antonia Small; The Apprenticeshop; Archer's on the Pier; Atlantic Baking Company; Florence Baker, RD LD; Bangor Savings Bank; Barbara Ernst Prey; Bayview Gallery; Bellingham Bell Company; Bittersweet Heritage Farm; The Black Parrot; Paul Boynton; Brass Compass; Brooks Trap Mill; Calming Presence Holistic Therapies; Michael and Lauren Clancy; Camden Cone; Camden Snow Bowl; Cape Air; Catherine's Confections; Cayouette Flooring ; Chambers Jewelers; Clean Bee Laundry; Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens; Steve Cobb; Courier Publications; Craig Gauthier; Craignair Inn; Creative Images Hair Salon; CrossFit Crossover; Curtis Custom Meats; Custom Cordage; D. Cole Jewelers; Dancing Blanket Handwovens; Danica Candles; Darci Lynn Morris Emerson; David Footer; David McPhail; David Scriven Crowley; Debbie Hanson; DelFrate, Inc. ; Donald Meklin & Sons, LLC; Donald Wood; Donna Dearborn; Doug Anderson; Doug Rackliff; Dow Furniture; Dunkin Donuts; EBS Building Supplies; Elizabeth's Cuts; Englishman Marine; Este Underdown; Farnsworth Art Museum; Fiore Artisan Olive Oils & Vinegars; Flagship Cinemas; FMC BioPolymer; Frankenstein Furniture; Frantz Furniture; Fuller Chevrolet GMC; F/V Morning Star; Pat and Jennifer Garrett; Gone Fishin' Tractor Services; Glen Cove Dental Associates; Good Tern Natural Foods; George C. Hall & Sons, Inc.; Greg Mort; Hampton Inn; Hannaford; The Happy Horse Hidden River Equestiran Center; Herman Miller; Highlands Coffee House; Hi-Tech Communications; Hoboken Gardens; Hole in the Wall Bagel Shop; Home Depot; Ilmi and Brad Carter; The Inn at Ocean's Edge; Interstate Septic; James W. Strong, Attorney; Janice Cross; JBI Earthwork; Jennifer Burns; Jensen's Pharmacy; Jess's Market; Joan Peters; Jo-ann Coffin; John Bly; Jon Mort; Josh McPhail; J.K. Kalloch; Just Friends Hair Design; KDK Printing & Embroidery; Kat's Korner; Keag Store; Korinnsdance; Lake Pemaquid, Inc.; Lie-Nielsen Toolworks; Lowe's; Lydia Kaeyer; Lyman-Morse Boatbuilding, Inc.; Mace's; Maine Chefs; Maine Coast Petroleum, Inc.; Maine Dermatology; Maine Lobster Festival; Maine Red Claws; Maine State Prison Showroom; Manks Bros. Auto Garage; Marjorie Davis; Marie Finnegan; Maritime Energy; Mark Allen; Market Basket; Master-Clean; Midcoast Blinds & Shades and Judith Grossman Decorating; Mid-Coast Diesel Performance; Midcoast Internet Solutions; Midcoast Marine; MRC; Mid-Coast School of Technology; Monhegan Boat Line; Nail Techniques; Noble Clay; Oakland Seashore Motel & Cabins; Otty Merrill; Owls Head Transportation Museum; Paper Path Imaging, Inc.; Pen-Bay Glass; Penobscot Bay Regional Chamber of Commerce; Penobscot Island Air; Personal Book Shop; Performance Paving; Peter Hodgkins; Pik Qwik; Pipsqueaks Reusable Bags; Planet Toys; Port Clyde Kayaks; Prince's Furniture; Prior Brothers Auto Repair; Puffins Nest; Purple Planet Web Design; Randy Elwell; Raydene Emery; Redwire Mobile; Charlie Reed; Reflections Hair Salon; Rheal Day Spa; Rick Bernard; Ridgeberry Corp.; Robin Wood; Rockland Ford Lincoln; Rockland Golf Club; Rock Coast Sports; Sabrosa Cupcake Co.; Sally Beauty Supply; Sandra Coffin; Sandra Hatch; Sea Star Shop; Shepard's Storage; Sheryl Carpenter; Side Country Sports; Smile Concepts; St. Clair Rentals & Landscaping; Stone Coast CrossFit; Sugar Tools; Superior Bait and Salt; Sweetgrass Farm Winery & Distillery; Synergy Massage & Body Works; The Brown Bag; The Green Thumb; TJMaxx; The Korean Schools of Karate; The Slipway; The Store; Theo B. Camisole; Thomaston Grocery; Tiffany Emery; Tim Sanford; Time Warner Cable; Trade Winds Motor Inn; Traveling Hands; U.S. Cellular; Uptown Studio; Ann Vassey; Village Ice Cream; Waterworks Restaurant; F.W. Webb; Winnie Wildes; and Zulu Nyala. Trekkers truly appreciates their generosity and encourages everyone to support these local enterprises.
And, of course, we want to thank everyone who came to enjoy the event itself. The auction bidding was generous and the dessert buffet offered a variety of delicious treats provided by the students’ families. The evening began with great music during the auction preview and ended with more tunes supplied by local DJ Andy Jablonski. Thanks also go to all the student and parent volunteers, the Trekkers staff, and to the auction committee who helped plan this fundraising event: Elisabeth Lohmueller; Cathy Ansart, Dyann Peters, Betsy Rector, Gail Tardif, Kristin Gould and Jean Faustini.
As Trekkers celebrates its 19th year of mentoring youth from the Midcoast area; we continue to be humbled and amazed by the outpouring of support we receive from the community. It is through the community’s support that we are able to achieve the Trekkers’ mission of connecting young people with caring adults through expeditionary learning; community service and adventure-based education. We can’t thank you enough for your continued support and for helping to make our second annual Trekkers auction so successful.
Executive Director, Trekkers
Pantry needs support
The Camden Area Christian Food Pantry needs your help this holiday season and in the year ahead to help those in need. The pantry's resources are being stretched thin by decreased availability of low cost food from the Good Shepherd Food Bank, increased need to buy food at retail prices and an ever-increasing client base.
Up until this year, our major source of food has been the Good Shepherd Food Bank in Auburn. Volunteers have been making weekly trips with our late model van to pick up supplies. It was not unusual to pick up 1,500 pounds or more of canned goods, cereal, frozen meats and other food at 16 cents per pound. However, due to the increased usage by more than 600 agencies, food bank supplies available per agency have diminished considerably. Food at 16 cents per pound is now a trick of what it used to be.
We have been forced to buy food from local sources at an increasing rate and at retail prices. As a result our food costs have skyrocketed. During the last year, we have seen food costs increase by more than 36 percent.
Thankfully, other sources of food have provided support. Erickson Farm's Teen Ag Program provided 2,000 pounds of fresh produce this season. Coastal Mountain Land Trust gave us many quarts of blueberries. Hope Orchards gave us apples. Ducktrap River of Maine gave us smoked fish. Every Saturday and Sunday, volunteers pick up donated bread from the Rockland Hannaford store. Camden's Hannaford store has sold the most Helping Hands food boxes of all Hannaford stores, two out of the past three years, and all those boxes go to our clients. The U.S. Postal Service food drive in May provides major additions of food to our shelves. Every year, local schools and Scout troops every year bring in hundreds of bags of food. The importance of individual food donations cannot be overlooked. We are most grateful.
Other costs are kept low with our 100 percent volunteer staff. The pantry is a 501c3 tax-exempt organization. Please consider sending donations to the Camden Area Christian Food Pantry, P.O. Box 337, Camden, ME 04843. Food donations can be brought to us at 128 Mt. Battie St. in Camden. People in need who reside in Appleton, Camden, Hope, Lincolnville, Rockport, Searsmont, Union and Washington can visit us on Tuesdays, from 8 to 11 a.m. and Thursdays from 4 to 6 p.m. For more information, please visit our website at camdenfoodpantry.org, email at firstname.lastname@example.org or 236-9790.
Jane Bennett, President
CACFP Board of Directors
A thank you from Gartley
Thank you to all the people that helped me in my campaign for the Camden and Rockport seat in the State House of Representatives. A political campaign is a long road. There are many people behind the scenes, volunteering their time and expertise because they believe in you. It is humbling and I am grateful.
I could not have done this without the support of the Knox County Republicans led by Jan Dolcater and volunteer coordinator Paula Sutton. The two of them tirelessly put together teams to call voters, hand out literature, send out mailers, put out signs, and write letters to the editor. They offered support, encouragement, and conviction.
My friends, neighbors, and community members stood by me as I took on this challenge. They saw how hard I was working and helped in any way that they could. They had coffees for me to meet voters, they drove me around Camden and Rockport for hours so that I could knock on doors, they “liked” my posts on Facebook, they waved signs for me on Election Day, and gave me a “thumbs up” when it seemed I needed it most.
I would be remiss if I didn’t thank Joan Welsh for running an upstanding campaign. Early in our contest, we met and agreed that we would do our best to keep this endeavor above board. I feel that we accomplished this and at the end of the day we both want what’s best for our district. I wish her the best and look forward to her leadership in this complicated role.
Finally, my husband, Will, and sons, Taylor and Cameron, kept me moving forward. It was their enthusiasm and confidence that inspired me to run. Without their energy, unflagging support, and shoulders to lean on, I wouldn’t have had this amazing experience. I have no regrets and look forward to continuing to work for the best interests of the people of Camden and Rockport.