News Minute: Here’s the latest Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont news from The Associated Press

EASTON, Maine (AP) – The Maine Fire Marshal’s Office says two people have been killed in an early morning fire in northern Maine. A spokesman for the state Public Safety Department says the bodies were discovered in a home in the town of Easton early this morning.

ALFRED, Maine (AP) – A judge has delayed the trial of a key figure in a prostitution scandal centered at a Zumba dance studio in Maine. Justice Nancy Mills said Tuesday that the trial cannot proceed until the state supreme court rules on an appeal of her decision to dismiss 46 counts against Mark Strong Senior.

AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) – A bill to make fireworks illegal again in Maine is among those being sent to committee for further review as lawmakers get a look at the first wave of bills to be considered this year. Among the other bills also being assigned to committees today are proposals to stop the sale of corn-based ethanol in Maine if at least two other New England states do the same thing, and a proposed constitutional amendment to reduce the size of the Legislature.

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) – Senator Susan Collins is receiving high honors from the Navy. Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus is scheduled to present Collins with the Navy Distinguished Public Service Award. The award is the highest public service honor bestowed by the Navy and is awarded to civilians for service that benefits the Navy and Marine Corps.

NEW HAMPSHIRE:

LITTELTON, N.H. (AP) – New Hampshire prosecutors say a Vermont man stabbed to death a 70-year-old woman at the Hampton Inn in Littleton, New Hampshire. Thirty-7-year-old Rodney Hill is scheduled to be arraigned today on second-degree murder charges in the death of 70-year-old Dr. Catherine Houghton of Francestown.

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) – A fledgling New Hampshire program that gives businesses a tax credit for donating to scholarship organizations to send students to private or public schools is under assault on two fronts. Three civil liberties groups sued earlier this month to block the program as unconstitutional and now legislators will consider repealing it.

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) – State health officials say the number of flu-related deaths in New Hampshire has increased to 35 – and the first child death among them. The department says the total is highest number of flu-related deaths in a single season the state has recorded since 1997. The department says the child who died was under 5 years old.

PORTSMOUTH, N.H. (AP) – A $300,000 skating rink has been proposed near the grounds of a historical village in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, with a pit fire and restaurant. The skating area near the Strawbery Banke Museum would be called Puddle Dock Pond. Portsmouth financial planner Jeff Keefe says a public rink could serve as a winter gathering hub.

VERMONT:

MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) – Former Vermont Governor Madeleine Kunin is telling lawmakers she supports legislation that would allow physicians to help terminally ill patients end their own lives. She testified today before the Senate Health and Welfare Committee, which is also holding a public hearing on a proposal that would allow terminally ill patients to request lethal doses of drugs.

LITTELTON, N.H. (AP) – New Hampshire prosecutors say a Vermont man stabbed to death a 70-year-old woman at the Hampton Inn in Littleton, New Hampshire. Thirty-7-year-old Rodney Hill is scheduled to be arraigned today on second-degree murder charges in the death of 70-year-old Dr. Catherine Houghton of Francestown.

ST. JOHNSBURY, Vt. (AP) – A Vermont man accused of stealing a car and committing a home invasion before he was shot by a state trooper on a parked school bus has been ordered held on $50,000 bail. The Caledonian-Record reports court documents say William Mahoney was shot in September after he charged down the aisle of the bus toward the officer.

STAMFORD, Vt. (AP) – Vermont game wardens say the biggest buck shot in the state in more than 20 years was shot a day after the close of the November rifle hunting season. Wardens say they received a tip that Jim Smith, of Stamford, was seen removing the 10-point buck from the woods on November 26th. Smith was charged with taking deer in closed season.

Post Author: Evelyn Wallace