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Hello there Bulletinfolken: it's Thursday, April 1. 

Crossposted in today's list of Humans Doing Interesting Things With Computers and Information You Didn't Know You Needed, researchers at Selçuk University in Turkey have developed a "a computer vision system... to distinguish seven different registered varieties of dry beans" aimed at helping producers and consumers get information about obtaining uniform bean varieties.

The system identifies attributes such as the "minor axis length" ("the longest line that can be drawn from the bean while standing perpendicular to the main axis"), the area ("the area of a bean zone and the number of pixels within its boundaries") and the perimeter ("bean circumference is defined as the length of its border"). You can access the data here, on the off chance you need information about bean uniformity this Thursday morning.

Onward!

In the weather: As long as we all aren't swept away by this afternoon we'll get to enjoy the sunshine this weekend, with highs in the upper 40s to low 50s!

High tide on the Union River is at 1:30 p.m.; low tide is at 7:40 p.m.
An aerial view gives an expansive glance at the future Charles M. Sumner Learning Campus, the grade-6-through-12 school under construction behind Sumner Memorial High School. LEE BRYANT/NICKERSON & O'DAY

CITY PLANS RESTRUCTURING OF FINANCE DEPARTMENT

Anyone checking the city’s current job openings might be surprised to see the top Finance Department position advertised. The city seeks a finance director “responsible for the planning, organization and direction of all functions performed by the Finance Department.” The finance director also serves as treasurer under the city charter. Also advertised is the assistant deputy treasurer position, “responsible for daily accounting operations, journal entries, analyzing revenues and expenses, reconciliation of the general ledger and assisting the finance director.” Currently, Jennifer Merchant is finance director and Stacie Roberson is assistant deputy treasurer. However, City Manager Glenn Moshier said that neither is leaving City Hall.


ROAD DISPUTE PROMPTS DESIST LETTER

The town of Blue Hill last week received a warning letter from Ellsworth attorney Daniel Pileggi, representing Ben and Brittany Adams, who own Adams Landscaping on Turkey Farm Road, that any communication with the couple should be directed to Pileggi himself. Ben Adams had contacted Pileggi after being frustrated with what he describes as “drama” from a handful of neighbors over his business’s use of the Turkey Farm Road. Some residents of the road say the truck traffic is excessive, unsafe and causing damage and pollution. The letter and the road were discussed for over an hour Monday during the Board of Selectmen’s meeting.


FORMER POLICE CHIEF ASSISTING IN GOULDSBORO

Former Gouldsboro Police Chief Glenn Grant is temporarily assisting the town in an administrative capacity pending the resolution of a personnel matter involving current Chief John Shively and Officer Adam Brackett. Both officers remain employed by the town but are off-duty. All emergency calls — night or day — are being handled largely by the Hancock County Sheriff’s Office. In an email Wednesday, Town Manager Andrea Sirois reported that Grant is working “on a very temporary basis in an administrative support role in the PD office.” She added that the Hancock County Sheriff’s Office and Maine State Police are fulfilling Gouldsboro’s day-to-day emergency needs while Shively and Brackett are off-duty. She confirmed “both individuals are currently employed.”

CHAMBER OPENS IN NEW LOCATION

“It’s new. It’s bigger!” Executive Director Gretchen Wilson says while standing in the middle of the gleaming parquet floor of the Ellsworth Area Chamber of Commerce’s new home. The chamber has moved from its stand-alone location in the Ellsworth Shopping Center to a new prime spot next to Martha’s Diner. Its grand opening was Monday, March 29. The move was four years in the making, Wilson said. The chamber had held four consecutive 10-year leases for its former location, at the rate of $1 per year. But all good things, people say, come to an end, and Wilson was given fair warning that the lease would not be renewed a fifth time.


FORMER POSTAL WORKER PLEADS GUILTY TO MAIL THEFT

A Hancock man pleaded guilty March 25 in federal court to theft of mail by a postal employee, acting U.S. Attorney Donald E. Clark announced. According to court records, Daniel Hindes, 35, worked as a rural carrier associate out of the Bar Harbor post office. From November 2019 through March 2020, he opened mail addressed to customers on his route and stole cash and gift cards. He then discarded the opened mail into the garbage rather than delivering the items. When interviewed by federal investigators, he admitted to opening 20 to 30 letters and taking cash and gift cards inside them.

MASS VACCINATION CLINIC IS UNVEILED

A new COVID-19 vaccination clinic in the former Family Dollar on High Street opens today, with 320 doses of the Moderna vaccine already in hand, said Kelley Columber, director of communications for Northern Light Maine Coast and Blue Hill hospitals. At full capacity, the clinic will be able to handle 500 to 700 shots a day at eight vaccination stations while maintaining physical distances between patients throughout the process. The clinic is located between Shaw’s and Renys. “In order to make this a smooth process, patients should wait in their cars till five minutes before their appointment,” said John Ronan, CEO of Northern Light Maine Coast and Blue Hill hospitals.


TRAFFICKING CONSPIRACY ALLEGED

A Trenton woman has been charged along with two Massachusetts men in a drug trafficking conspiracy involving cocaine, crack cocaine, fentanyl and methamphetamine, according to a press release issued by the U.S. Department of Justice District of Massachusetts. Shelby Kleffman, 31, and her co-defendant, Armani Minier-Tejada, 22, of Salem, Mass., were each charged with one count of conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute controlled substances including cocaine, cocaine base, fentanyl and methamphetamine and one count of conspiracy to possess, use and carry firearms to further a drug trafficking conspiracy.

Out of this world comes to mind, sampling Winkumpaugh Road resident David Shepard’s buttery, amber-hued maple syrup last Friday at the retired mason’s finely crafted “sugar shack.” Inside the handsome brickand- granite edifice, which he built in recent years, Shepard was on his “third boil” of sap tapped from mostly red maples. For more info, call 667-5621.
SCHOODIC EMTS WILL CONTINUE TO BE PAID PER-CALL

Schoodic EMS, which provides 24/7 medical emergency response to the towns of Gouldsboro and Winter Harbor, will continue to compensate its squad’s members on a pay-per-call basis for the 2021-22 fiscal year. The decision came after selectmen concluded that going to an hourly wage would cost far more. At their special meeting March 23, selectmen weighed compensating emergency medical technicians (EMTs) at an hourly rate at an annual cost of $74,544 versus spending $57,867.79 per year when paying them on a per-call basis. The town manager’s hourly-wage estimate did not include EMTs and paramedics’ time spent fulfilling required training for license renewals.
REBECCA DAUGHERTY

KAYAK GUIDES TAKE TIME OUT FOR THEMSELVES TO EXPLORE COASTAL MAINE

“From out of the fog came the shape of the island, vague at first so we weren’t even sure it was there, then definite, familiar." And so begins the journey of Michael and Rebecca Daugherty as they set out from their hometown of Stonington on a journey “upwest and downeast,” which also is, fittingly, the title of their new book: “Upwest & Downeast: Meandering the Maine Coast by Sea Kayak.” “You just work all summer,” said Michael, of the couple’s experience running first an art gallery (Isalos Fine Art) and now a kayak guiding business (Sea Kayak Stonington, formerly Upwest & Downeast Sea Kayaking). “You start resenting all these people who are having fun and you’re not ... we were on the water but working all the time.”

LONGTIME COACH LIBBY HANGS UP WHISTLE AFTER 46 YEARS

Doug Libby vividly remembers one of the very first basketball games he watched in Hancock County. Arriving in Ellsworth in 1975 after accepting a teaching job at Surry Elementary School, Libby, who had gotten hooked on coaching youth sports during his young-adult years in Aroostook County, was eager to get involved. With the passage of Title IX forging new ground for girls’ athletics, there were more opportunities than ever to do so. Prior to the landmark legislation, very few schools in Hancock County or elsewhere in the state sponsored girls’ basketball. With female athletes having been deprived of the same opportunities afforded to their male peers for years, the first Frenchman Bay League contest between Surry and Pemetic was a matchup of two teams that were brand new to the sport. “The final score was 2-0, and the team that won didn’t even make a basket,” Libby recalled of the game. “The Surry girls lost because they shot at the wrong basket and put it in. That was the only score of the game.”

Heard Around Town:  The COVID-19 pandemic has had few upsides, but the virus’s threat brought Michael and Judy Povich’s son Matthew, daughter-in-law Kerean and granddaughters Kira and Maia from California to Bar Harbor for the past five months. Matt, who is an astronomy professor at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, and Kerean, who is the senior director of Claremont College’s Business Systems Services, both were able to work remotely while Kira and Maia attended school virtually. Judy also tutored the girls several days a week while Grampy no doubt kept them thoroughly entertained during their Maine stay that ended last Saturday.

Going out? Wear your mask, wash your hands, keep your distance. 

Tomorrow, Friday, former George Stevens Academy science teacher Roger Bennatti will speak as part of the "A Touch of Maine" series at 1:30 p.m. At 7 p.m., tune or (in-person or online) to a concert by pianist George Lopez at 7 p.m. at Hammond Hall in Winter Harbor.

On Saturday, learn some Tai Chi from 10 to 11 a.m. then get a takeout bean supper from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. at the East Orrington Congregational Church.

The rest of the weekend is looking pretty quiet, but if you've got an event we should know about, submit it here! There's plenty going on later in the week as well.

As of Wednesday, each citizen’s share of the outstanding public debt was $85,054, up $100 from $84,954 last week. Students who attend school in Maine leave with an average student loan debt of $32,521.

Dad joke of the day: Police arrested a bottle of water because it was wanted in three different states: solid, liquid and gas.
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