Talk of the Towns 9/14/22: A Conversation with Esperanza Stancioff

Producer/Host: Ron Beard
Theme music for Talk of the Towns Theme music for Talk of the Towns is a medley from Coronach, on a Balnain House Highland Music recording.

Talk of the Towns: Local Community concerns and opportunities

This month:

We profile Esperanza Stancioff, Emeritus Professor, University of Maine Cooperative Extension and Sea Grant, about her work to expand community science in aid of better policies and practices for water quality and adaptation to climate change.

What were some of the key elements in your career with University of Maine?
Where did you develop your love of the sea?
Describe the intersecting space between the science developed in the academy, those charged with protecting the environment, and citizens, who might appreciate the benefits of our ecosystem in their personal lives or in pursuing their livelihoods.
How did you discover the importance of engaging citizens to to contribute to scientific knowledge.
What did you learn from bringing together citizens, scientists, historians, policy makers and people making their living on the water to celebrate Penobscot Bay as a place, and to identify the gaps in our knowledge that might help us better protect and manage our shared ecological resources.
More recently, you have worked with citizens and networks of people to respond to growing threats of climate change. Talk about what motivated you to take up this work and some of the
results.

Guest/s:
Esperanza Stancioff, Emeritus Professor, University of Maine Cooperative Extension and Sea Grant

About the host:
Ron Beard is producer and host of Talk of the Towns, which first aired on WERU in 1993 as part of his community building work as an Extension professor with University of Maine Cooperative Extension and Sea Grant. He took all the journalism courses he could fit in while an undergraduate student in wildlife management and served as an intern with Maine Public Television nightly newscast in the early 1970s. Ron is an adjunct faculty member at College of the Atlantic, teaching courses on community development. Ron served on the Bar Harbor Town Council for six years and is currently board chair for the Jesup Memorial Library in Bar Harbor, where he has lived since 1975. Look for him on the Allagash River in June, and whenever he can get away, in the highlands of Scotland where he was fortunate to spend two sabbaticals.

Talk of the Towns 8/10/22: Property Assessment & Taxes in Maine Towns

Producer/Host: Ron Beard
Theme music for Talk of the Towns is a medley from Coronach, on a Balnain House

Talk of the Towns: Local Community concerns and opportunities

This month:
We talk with town representatives from Camden, Orono and Lamoine about how they assess the value of property and how towns arrive at the bill that property owners pay each year.
-What sources of revenue do towns in Maine draw on to fund their budgets?
-What types of property make up a town’s “tax base’?
-How are the values of properties assessed? How does assessment relate to sales prices?
-What is the relationship between a town’s budget and property taxes?
tax?
-Are there forms of relief for property owners, like the homestead exemption? (homestead exemption, etc)
-What happens when a property owner disputes the assessed value of their property?

Guest/s:
Caitlin Thompson, Deputy Assessor, Town of Camden
Marc Perry, Downeast Assessing Services
Stu Marckoon, Town of Lamoine

About the host:
Ron Beard is producer and host of Talk of the Towns, which first aired on WERU in 1993 as part of his community building work as an Extension professor with University of Maine Cooperative Extension and Sea Grant. He took all the journalism courses he could fit in while an undergraduate student in wildlife management and served as an intern with Maine Public Television nightly newscast in the early 1970s. Ron is an adjunct faculty member at College of the Atlantic, teaching courses on community development. Ron served on the Bar Harbor Town Council for six years and is currently board chair for the Jesup Memorial Library in Bar Harbor, where he has lived since 1975. Look for him on the Allagash River in June, and whenever he can get away, in the highlands of Scotland where he was fortunate to spend two sabbaticals.

Talk of the Towns 7/13/22: How Municipalities Maintain Roads

Producer/Host: Ron Beard
Theme music for Talk of the Towns is a medley from Coronach, on a Balnain House

Talk of the Towns: Local Community concerns and opportunities

For the most part, you can get there from here, thanks to the dedication of those who take care of our road systems. At the town level, that might be a whole public works department or to a road supervisor with a budget to contract for services. In conversation with representatives of Ellsworth and Tremont, we learn how they take care of their roads… plowing and potholes in the winter and repaving and other projects in the summer and fall.

-Description of Ellsworth and Tremont’s road systems and annual cycle of maintaining roads
-Are their best practices or “science” that you follow in maintaining or rebuilding roads?
-How do you share responsibilities for any State Roads with Maine Department of Transportation?
-How is your town adapting to the increased frequency and intensity of rain storms and other weather?

Guests:
Lisa Sekulich, Public Works Director, City of Ellsworth
Jesse Dunbar, Town Manager, Town of Tremont

About the host:
Ron Beard is producer and host of Talk of the Towns, which first aired on WERU in 1993 as part of his community building work as an Extension professor with University of Maine Cooperative Extension and Sea Grant. He took all the journalism courses he could fit in while an undergraduate student in wildlife management and served as an intern with Maine Public Television nightly newscast in the early 1970s. Ron is an adjunct faculty member at College of the Atlantic, teaching courses on community development. Ron served on the Bar Harbor Town Council for six years and is currently board chair for the Jesup Memorial Library in Bar Harbor, where he has lived since 1975. Look for him on the Allagash River in June, and whenever he can get away, in the highlands of Scotland where he was fortunate to spend two sabbaticals.

Talk of the Towns 6/8/22: An Interview with Paul Anderson

Producer/Host: Ron Beard

Talk of the Towns: Local Community concerns and opportunities

Over the last 40 years, Paul Anderson has had a key role in understanding and communicating marine science in Maine. As a micro-biologist for the Department of Marine Resources, he helped establish protocols so citizen-scientists could contribute data helping assure that clams harvested from Maine flats were safe to eat. He led the University of Maine’s Sea Grant program, with its emphasis on extension, education, and research. And after several years at the helm, he is stepping down as head of the non-profit Maine Center for Commercial Fisheries, based in Stonington, helping further the organization as a partner in scientific research.

Recently, Paul sat down for a wide-ranging conversation with Talk of the Towns host, Ron Beard. Anderson reflected on his work, some of the changes he has seen and what might lie ahead in Maine’s marine economy.

-What were the highlights of your career in marine science, including your work with the Maine Department of Marine Resources, University of Maine Sea Grant and the Maine Center for Coastal Fisheries?
-What makes Maine’s marine ecosystem most interesting?
-How have citizens gotten involved with collecting environmental data?
-What are the most interesting connections between marine science and how people make their livings along the coast and the quality of life and the environment?
-Through you career so far, what are some of the ‘ah-ha” moments when you saw marine science and resource management come to the forefront of solving problems or developing new approaches?
-Any reflections to share with young folks about careers and jobs in marine-related science, management and fisheries?

Guest: Paul Anderson, Executive Director, Maine Center for Commercial Fisheries

About the host:
Ron Beard is producer and host of Talk of the Towns, which first aired on WERU in 1993 as part of his community building work as an Extension professor with University of Maine Cooperative Extension and Sea Grant. He took all the journalism courses he could fit in while an undergraduate student in wildlife management and served as an intern with Maine Public Television nightly newscast in the early 1970s. Ron is an adjunct faculty member at College of the Atlantic, teaching courses on community development. Ron served on the Bar Harbor Town Council for six years and is currently board chair for the Jesup Memorial Library in Bar Harbor, where he has lived since 1975. Look for him on the Allagash River in June, and whenever he can get away, in the highlands of Scotland where he was fortunate to spend two sabbaticals.

Talk of the Towns 5/11/22: The Changing Media Landscape in Maine and Elsewhere

Producer/Host: Ron Beard

Talk of the Towns: Local Community concerns and opportunities

We know the media landscape is changing, here in Maine, as elsewhere. Where do we get? our? news and information, and how do we test it for accuracy? And how does today’s media intersect with making decisions in a democracy?

Ron Beard, host of Talk of the Towns, talks with guests Kate Cough, reporter for the Maine Monitor, Faith DeAmbrose, editor of the Mount Desert Islander newspaper, Michael Socolow, Journalism Professor from University of Maine and WERU’s ?own ?News and Public Affairs Manager, Amy Browne.? They share perceptions about Maine’s changing media landscape and what it means for democracy and citizen discourse.?

Guests:
Kate Cough, Reporter, The Maine Monitor
Faith DeAmbrose, Managing Editor, The Mount Desert Islander
Michael Socolow, Media historian and Associate Professor of Communication and Journalism, University of Maine
Amy Browne, News and Public Affairs Manager, WERU Community Radio

About the host:
Ron Beard is producer and host of Talk of the Towns, which first aired on WERU in 1993 as part of his community building work as an Extension professor with University of Maine Cooperative Extension and Sea Grant. He took all the journalism courses he could fit in while an undergraduate student in wildlife management and served as an intern with Maine Public Television nightly newscast in the early 1970s. Ron is an adjunct faculty member at College of the Atlantic, teaching courses on community development. Ron served on the Bar Harbor Town Council for six years and is currently board chair for the Jesup Memorial Library in Bar Harbor, where he has lived since 1975. Look for him on the Allagash River in June, and whenever he can get away, in the highlands of Scotland where he was fortunate to spend two sabbaticals.

Talk of the Towns 4/13/22: Maine Climate Action Groups

Producer/Host: Ron Beard

Local groups throughout Maine are bringing climate work from individual to local action. A Climate to Thrive, based on Mount Desert Island, Maine has recently convened community-based climate groups across the state to learn from one another, focusing on strategic planning and how to engage local citizens, young and old, and elected leaders. This program highlights the work of A Climate to Thrive, Green Ellsworth, Freeport Climate Action Now and Blue Hill Peninsula Tomorrow Climate Coalition.

-Each guest highlights what they feel is one or two significant outcomes, so far, of their organization’s work
-Each guest shares what their organization is working on currently
-A Climate To Thrive’s statewide work to bring community groups together to focus on strategic planning at the local level
-What is climate justice? What does climate justice “look” like on the ground?
-What does it take to organize for climate action at the community level—what have you learned

Johanna Blackman, Executive Director, A Climate to Thrive
Mary Blackstone, Community Liaison, Green Ellsworth
Kathleen Sullivan, Acting Lead, Freeport Climate Action Now
Allen Kratz, Blue Hill Peninsula Tomorrow Climate Coalition

About the host:
Ron Beard is producer and host of Talk of the Towns, which first aired on WERU in 1993 as part of his community building work as an Extension professor with University of Maine Cooperative Extension and Sea Grant. He took all the journalism courses he could fit in while an undergraduate student in wildlife management and served as an intern with Maine Public Television nightly newscast in the early 1970s. Ron is an adjunct faculty member at College of the Atlantic, teaching courses on community development. Ron served on the Bar Harbor Town Council for six years and is currently board chair for the Jesup Memorial Library in Bar Harbor, where he has lived since 1975. Look for him on the Allagash River in June, and whenever he can get away, in the highlands of Scotland where he was fortunate to spend two sabbaticals.

Talk of the Towns 3/9/22: Town Clerks—an Essential Role in Maine Communities

Producer/Host: Ron Beard

Town clerks play an important role in local communities, often behind the scenes. They provide direct day-to-day contact with citizens, play critical support roles to other town departments, and oversee town meetings as well as local, state, and federal elections. And they take great satisfaction in doing their jobs well and keeping up with trends and technology. This program highlights how town clerks in Bucksport, Bar Harbor, Deer Isle and Mount Desert communities carry out their responsibilities.

Guests:

Claire Woolfolk, Town Clerk, Mount Desert, Maine
Liz Graves, Town Clerk, Bar Harbor, Maine
Heather Cormier, Town Clerk, Deer Isle, Maine
Amy Flood, City Clerk, Belfast, Maine

About the host:
Ron Beard is producer and host of Talk of the Towns, which first aired on WERU in 1993 as part of his community building work as an Extension professor with University of Maine Cooperative Extension and Sea Grant. He took all the journalism courses he could fit in while an undergraduate student in wildlife management and served as an intern with Maine Public Television nightly newscast in the early 1970s. Ron is an adjunct faculty member at College of the Atlantic, teaching courses on community development. Ron served on the Bar Harbor Town Council for six years and is currently board chair for the Jesup Memorial Library in Bar Harbor, where he has lived since 1975. Look for him on the Allagash River in June, and whenever he can get away, in the highlands of Scotland where he was fortunate to spend two sabbaticals.

Talk of the Towns 1/12/22: College of the Atlantic in its 50th Year—a conversation with Darron Collins, President

Producer/Host: Ron Beard

College of the Atlantic in Bar Harbor, Maine, welcomed its first class 50 years ago, offering a many paths to a degree in human ecology. In a conversation with Darron Collins, President of the college and himself a graduate, we explore the origins and history of College of the Atlantic, the ways in which students learn and faculty teach, the role of international students who make up nearly 20% of the intentionally small student body of 350, and aspirations as faculty, staff and students look ahead.

About the host:
Ron Beard is producer and host of Talk of the Towns, which first aired on WERU in 1993 as part of his community building work as an Extension professor with University of Maine Cooperative Extension and Sea Grant. He took all the journalism courses he could fit in while an undergraduate student in wildlife management and served as an intern with Maine Public Television nightly newscast in the early 1970s. Ron is an adjunct faculty member at College of the Atlantic, teaching courses on community development. Ron served on the Bar Harbor Town Council for six years and is currently board chair for the Jesup Memorial Library in Bar Harbor, where he has lived since 1975. Look for him on the Allagash River in June, and whenever he can get away, in the highlands of Scotland where he was fortunate to spend two sabbaticals.