Archives for Maine

Maine Currents 3/20/18

Producer/Host: Amy Browne
Studio Engineer: John Greenman

Opposition to Maine Taxpayers Funding “Corporate Welfare” for Military Contractor General Dynamics

In February we reported on a proposal to give a $60 million tax break to Bath Iron Works at the expense of Maine taxpayers. Those who support the measure say it protects jobs, but those who oppose it see it as corporate welfare for defense contractor General Dynamics, the company that owns BIW. Today we follow up with some of the activists involved in the issue, including Bruce Gagnon who was with us last month, as well as Bob Klotz and Lisa Savage. We’re also joined by Alex Nunes, an investigative reporter at He has exposed details about what is going on behind the scenes of this deal. Columnist Lawrence Reichard, joins us in the studio. He’s covered the issue in his weekly column “Bricks and Mortars” which runs in the Waldo County based Republican Journal and the Coastal Journal in Bath.

Later in the program we check in with Jessica Stewart, one of 3 women who were arrested at Senator Collin’s office last December where they were protesting her support of the tax bill. They are heading to federal court tomorrow.

Note: Activist Mark Roman was scheduled to be with us but was unable to join us due to technical difficulties. He sent the following comment:
“In the taxation committee testimony, BIW VP, John Fitzgerald was asked by a committee member if he would open BIW books to the committee to help determine the need for the tax break. Mr Fitzgerald said quite loudly and quite clearly NO! we will not do that. It seems that the state is not to question the subsidiary of General Dynamics Corporation, the fifth largest weapons maker on the planet. The $45 million being requested would just cover the annual compensation of the top four officers of General Dynamics. I believe that the people of Maine need that money for education, infrastructure repairs and health care for our citizens. I would ask listeners to call their representatives and tell them to vote no on LD- 1781. I want to thank WERU for being the voice of the people”

Follow the proposed legislation at:
Contact info for your legislators is available at:

To receive Lawrence Reichard’s “Bricks and Mortars” column via email, contact him at

From Alex Nunes of
Here are a few links that may be of interest to your audience.
This is the original General Dynamics stock buyback story for The Providence Journal:
This is an op-ed I wrote for The Day newspaper in New London, Conn., about General Dynamics seeking state subsidies in New England. I talk about Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Maine:
These are two stories from a multi-part series about economic development in Rhode Island and Connecticut centered around building the Navy’s next generation of nuclear-armed submarines. The first story addresses the corporate welfare/economic development aspects of it. The second looks at the reaction from the peace community:

Investigative reporting from The Bollard was also mentioned on the show and can be found here:

Bruce Gagnon blogs at
Lisa Savage blogs at

Love Stories by Mainers – event recorded 2/14/18

Love Stories by Mainers, a storytelling event hosted by WERU-FM and Wednesday on Main, was held at the Alamo Theater in Bucksport, Maine on 2/14/18. Storytellers Becky and Rob McCall, David Weeda, Anu Dudley, Amy Roeder, Brook Minner, Carol Visser, Jonathan Fulford and Naomi Graychase took the stage to share their stories. Amy Browne of WERU-FM was the emcee. John Greenman recorded the event.

Some of these stories aired on WERU’s Maine Currents on 2/27/18 and on a WERU Special on 2/28/18. Instead of archiving those show separately, here you will find the entire storytelling event unedited, as well as the individual stories available for listening online or downloading.

The files attached below are in order:
-The full show
-Amy Roeder
-Anu Dudley
-Brook Minner
-Carol Visser
-David Weeda
-Jonathan Fulford
-Becky & Rob McCall
-Naomi Graychase

Coastal Conversations 2/23/18

Producer/Host: Natalie Springuel
Studio Engineer: Amy Browne

Seaweed ecology: what makes a healthy intertidal zone

-What is the intertidal zone
-What are the seaweed species in Maine and what ecological role to they play (habitat, food webs etc)
-Changes in the timing of species’ life cycles and how temperature and other parameters can trigger phenological mismatches and other food web challenges.

Jessie Muhlin, Associate Professor of Marine Biology, Maine Maritime Academy
Amanda Klemmer, Assistant Research Professor of Food-web ecology, University of Maine
Hannah Webber, Research and Education Projects Manager, Schoodic Institute

Talk of the Towns 2/9/18

Producer/Host: Ron Beard, University of Maine Cooperative Extension
Engineer: Amy Browne

Farms and Food System—the work of Maine Farmland Trust

Key Discussion Points:
How did MFT come to be and what are some of the elements in the timeline since it was started?
Thumbnail sketch of farming and farmers in Maine in 2018 and what trends are playing out?
Have the issues affecting farmers and farmland changed over the last twenty years?
How have your programs evolved… how are you advancing your mission today?
Farmland Access: Maine Farmlink, Maine Farms Realty
Farmland Protection: Purchased Easement Program, Buy-Protect-Sell
Farm Viability: Farming for Wholesale, Maine Harvest Bucks, Business Planning
Outreach & Public Policy: Maine Farms Journal, Art Gallery & Josheph A. Fiore Art Center, Policy & Research

Amanda Beal, President, Maine Farmland Trust
Erica Buswell, Vice President of Programs, Maine Farmland Trust
Brady Hatch Morning Dew Farm, Newcastle
Eleanor Kinney, board member for Maine Farmland Trust

Coastal Conversations 1/26/18

Producer/Host: Natalie Springuel
Studio Engineer: Amy Browne

Maine coastal and ocean issues: Biotoxins and Red Tide, From Marine Ecology to Public Health

Toxic algal blooms and red tides: what are they, why do they happen, and what species do they impact?
Recent blooms in Maine, including new species and species that have been here for a long time.
Given that humans can get sick from consuming shellfish that have accumulated biotoxins in their tissues, what are the state and the shellfish industry doing to ensure public health?

Barry King, Shellfish Biotoxin monitoring program, Maine Department of Marine Resources
Fiona De Koning, co-owner, Acadia Aqua Farms

BoatTalk 1/9/18

Producers/Hosts: Alan Sprague & Mike Joyce
Engineer: Amy Browne

Bad year for whales, slick future for oil

-What’s happening to the whales?
-Problems with oil exploration
-Blackbeard’s book club

Zachary Klyver Naturalist, Researcher, Conservationist
Jeff Dobbs Jeff Dobbs Productions filmaker

Let’s Talk Animals 11/23/17

Producer/Host: Dr. John Hunt

Wild Turkeys in Maine

Discussion on the establishment of Wild Turkeys in maine as well as their behavior, life cycle, conservation efforts.

Guest- State Wildlife Biologist- Brad Allen

Maine Currents 11/21/17

Producer/Host: Amy Browne

FOUR FOUNDATIONAL THEORIES OF LABOR ACTIVISM IN MAINE: THE KNIGHTS OF LABOR, THE AFL, THE IWW, AND THE SOCIALIST PARTY OF EUGENE DEBS – a presentation by Marc Cryer, Director of the Bureau of Labor Education, the University of Maine, recorded at UMaine on 11/16/17. This was the final in the fall semester Marxist and Socialist Studies lecture series.

Maine Currents- independent local news, views and culture, Tuesdays at 4pm on WERU-FM and