News

South Portland swears in new mayor


SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- South Portland swore in a new mayor Monday who's described as a friendly boss, who's a stickler for the rules and a proponent of public engagement.

The Portland Press Herald reports that Linda Cohen spent years grinding the gears of city government, working 21 years as a city clerk in South Portland and Portland. She won awards for integrity and professionalism and is now president of the South Portland/Cape Elizabeth Chamber of Commerce.

Fifty-nine-year-old Cohen hasn't walked the straightest path to mayor of Maine's fourth largest city. She grew up in Portland often surviving off government cheese and public assistance while her mother battled alcoholism. She dropped out of the University of Southern Maine twice, but re-enrolled full-time while pregnant.

Late storm makes for easy morning travel


SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- Despite this being the busiest travel day of the year, everything was normal and calm at Portland Jetport Wednesday morning.

The only cancellation before Noon was Delta flight 3909 to LaGuardia in New York. Cancellations and delays started to increase after noon. Some passengers told NEWS CENTER they were relieved that they were heading out early and missing the looming storm.

All five airlines have issued travel advisories for the day. As always though, it's best to check with your carrier before you head out the door.

Flight Tracker: PWM Airport Delays

Marijuana advocates hope Maine goes legal next


SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine (AP) -- Maine marijuana advocates say their state is in position to become the first state in the Northeast to legalize recreational use of the drug.

Marijuana legalization proponents around the country scored a series of wins on election night, when Oregon, Alaska and Washington, D.C. all went legal. Supporters of legalization in Maine say their efforts are buoyed by a ballot initiative in South Portland that legalized small amounts of marijuana in the state's fourth-largest city. Portland voters also legalized marijuana in Maine's largest city in 2013.

Stephen King's newest book is released


SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine (AP) -- Stephen King is wrapping up a six-city book tour in his home state.

The Maine-based horror writer is making his final appearance at Books-A-Million in South Portland, where he'll be signing copies of his book, "Revival."

The book launched on Nov. 11.

King has described it as a "straight-ahead horror novel."

About 900 of King's fans showed up last week to get tickets, but only 400 were rewarded with a chance to meet King.

READ MORE: Stephen King fans wait for newest novel


Pie throw benefits Make-a-Wish


SCARBOROUGH, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- Pie was on the menu for four Scarborough workers Thursday. As part of a Make-A-Wish fundraiser, four workers at Stantec took pies in the face.

Ursula from Gorham delivered the pies. The 12-year-old is batting Lymphoid Leukemia and recently went to Hawaii as part of her wish and Stantec raised money to grant her wish.

"It's a good cause, one we have done for many years. It's just fun to be part of it and I was happy to lead the way," said Stantec worker Mark Tracey.

Thursday's pie event generated another $1,600 in donations from Stantec employees to grant future wishes for Make-A-Wish children.


SoPo accident causes traffic on Maine Mall Road


SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- An accident on Maine Mall Road near the Turnpike Spur Tuesday afternoon caused traffic to back up in South Portland.

Police said a man ran a red light and hit three or four cars who were in the intersection and had the right of way. There were no serious injuries, but police said it will take a while to clear the accident and investigate.

As of 2:50 p.m., officials are still on scene. It is best to avoid the area if possible.


South Portland pot referendum goes door to door


SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- We're now ten days away from election day when voters will be heading to the polls. Those in South Portland will have to decide if they want to legalize recreational marijuana for adults in their city, and the campaigns from both sides are spending the final stretch going door to door.

A group from the Marijuana Policy Project spent their Saturday walking around several residential areas of South Portland asking citizens to vote in favor of the marijuana referendum. That would allow adults over the age of 21 to posses one once of marijuana or less in their homes, but not in public places. According to the Maine Director of the Marijuana Policy Project, David Boyer, recreational marijuana is a safer alternative to alcohol and would allow law enforcement to spend their time dealing with more serious crimes.