Winter weather taxing municipal plow crews and budgets

SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- A weekend full of snow flurries was bookended by two storms, keeping plow crews busy and eating further into many town's salt and sand supplies, as well as their budgets.

"It is a lot easier if it just came in, dumped a foot of snow and went out," explained South Portland Public Works plow driver Michael Glass.  "Then we could just come in, salt, plow and get rid of it.  It is these long, drawn out storms that really take a toll on our equipment, on us, on the budget, on supplies as far as salt and sand."

Glass and his co-workers are not complaining about the winter, just commenting on how the persistent precipitation takes a toll on their equipment and their family time. 

Tax season tips to avoid scam artists and identity thieves

SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- By now, most of us have received all of our W-2's and 1099's, gathered our receipts and are trying to figure out if we owe or are owed, but how can you avoid the scam artists and identity thieves looking to steal your personal information and money?

"The smell of money is in the air right now because it is tax season, and both legitimate lenders and non-legitimate lenders - scam artists - know that fact," stated Will Lund, superintendent of the Maine Bureau of Consumer Credit Protection.  "Whenever you have advancements, like the ability to file electronically, there will be people who try to take advantage of that."

Lund says be very wary of e-mails looking for your private information, even if they look legit.

Friends plan benefit in memory of Ashley Ouellette

SCARBOROUGH, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- Thursday marks the 12th anniversary of the murder of Ashley Ouellette. At 15-years old, she was found strangled to death in the middle of Pine Point Road in Scarborough.


The case remains unsolved, and Ashley's friends have placed balloons out on Pine Point Road as a rememberance. Her friends also are organizing a fundraiser in Ashley's memory to keep her name out there, and to benefit the Make A Wish Foundation. Ashley loved kids.

The plan is to hold a night of dinner, dancing and a raffle at the Landing at Pine Point. They're already raising money so that they can book the location. Then all net proceeds from the event will go to Make A Wish.

Ashley's childhood friend, Angie Presby-Hilton said, "I don't want whoever did this to think that the moment we stop talking about Ashley or doing things for Ashley or anything like that, that they think they've gotten away with it. Because they haven't."

Dead River Company to Match Every Dollar Collected from Individuals and Businesses, up to $100,000

WHAT:   Dead River Company and United Way of Greater Portland will announce the roll out of Share the Warmth, a philanthropic giving platform of Dead River Company, aimed at raising funds for fuel assistance across Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont. The fundraising initiative is targeted at individuals and businesses and Dead River Company will match every dollar collected, up to $100,000. All donations will be collected and distributed by United Way of Greater Portland to agencies that provide fuel assistance in the three states. Donation can be made through

Bill would extend Maine school year

AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) -- Lawmakers are going to consider a bill to lengthen Maine's mandatory minimum school year by five days.

A bill before the Education and Cultural Affairs Committee on Wednesday would extend the school year from 180 days to 185 days a year. The bill is sponsored by Republican Rep. Peter Edgecomb of Caribou, who's also a member of the education committee.

A separate bill also to be reviewed by the education committee would mandate that the school year not begin before September 1.

The rule would apply beginning in the 2012-2013 academic year and would apply to elementary schools, secondary schools, the University of Maine System and the Maine Community College System.







Fit at Five: Fit to Live

Getting moving at any age is always important. Unfortunately due to budget cuts a popular program that helped seniors stay in shape was discontinued. On this Fit at Five we meet one lady who took that as an opportunity to create her own program that made sure that seniors still had a fun outlet to keep fit. Kelly LaBrecque has more.


The Fit to Live program was the recipient to the 2010 Governor's Fitness Award.

This years "Dancing with the Community" event will be held Saturday April 30th at the Italian Heritage Center. The dinner, dance, and show will benefit the Fit to Live Senior Fitness Program. This year they hope to buy workout bikes with some the money raised. 

For ticket information you can contact the founder of Fit to Live Patty Medina at



Capital for a Day visits Greater Portland

WESTBROOK, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- Governor Paul LePage made Greater Portland the capital for a day on Friday.

Capital for a day was resurrected from the McKernan administration, the last Republican governor in the state of Maine.

LePage considers himself a man of the people, and says he wants to take state government out to meet directly with people and businesses. There are more people and businesses in the Portland area than any other part of Maine, so that's where he started.

The governor met with the Portland Chamber of Commerce, which was clearly a friendly audience. Chamber Director Godfrey Wood told the governor he is on the right track with business friendly policies. Lepage told the audience he has made tough choices and decisions about spending, about pension benefits and costs, he says the state is in financial trouble and the hard choices are needed.