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Portland Daily Sun

Some Green Later

Portland Daily Sun columnist Anna T. Collins emails to let me know she followed up on the greenwashing of the excise tax referendum. She writes:

In a public manner, the group behind More Green Now — Maine Leads — does not appear to be led by anyone with credentials to advocate for "green" causes. According to the public database of the Maine Commission on Governmental Ethics & Election Practices, it appears that the members of the Board of Directors and staff at Maine Leads have not contributed to environmentalist candidates or PACs. In fact, most of the contributions have been for Republican candidates, party committees, and tax-reduction- PACs. There is also no indication from Maine Leads’ website that it has ever been involved in environmental issues in the past. In fact, there is no explanation as to why it is now backing "tax relief" aimed at "green" cars.

Roy Lenardson insists the lack of information about environmental causes on the Maine Leads site is not indicative of the group’s lacking commitment to excise tax reduction for "green" vehicles. In fact, he views Maine Green Now as a great example of how Maine Leads can work together with environmentalists, such as Pat LaMarche. "Pat LaMarche, who was the Green Party’s Vice Presidential Candidate in 2004, has supported the excise tax reduction bill from the beginning," he explains. Lenardson continues that the term "green" does not belong to anyone. "Unfortunately, there is the current dynamic that 'green' somehow belongs to one side or the other," he continues "but, it does not have to be that way."[...]

He also insists that the partnership with LaMarche will become more public in the weeks to come and shares that my call has reminded him to update the public information offered by Maine Leads. Perhaps with those updates, it will become more clear what exactly is "green" about "Maine Green Now."

Pat LaMarche was contacted for this column, but we were unable to connect before the deadline.

Does this mean the casino campaign was a "green" initiative too?

"Portland is a News Factory"

WCSH has more on Portland's new paper:

Journalists With Jobs

The Portland Daily Sun, a new free daily newspaper, debuted this morning in the city of Portland and online at www.theportlanddailysun.com. I picked up a copy in one of their new maroon boxes just off monument square.

Al Diamon is wondering what the print edition is like, so here are some details from the first issue: It's 16 pages, about 60% local reporting and 40% syndicated (mostly AP) content. They list a circulation of 3,000 and the print version does include bylines (except for the article on the winter carnival). Click the image to the left for a larger version of the Daily Sun's front page. (This scan is black and white - the actual paper is in color).

The paper's editor, Curtis Robinson, assures readers in his introductory column that the publication won't be ideologically-driven. "We just want to write and photograph interesting stories that matter," writes Robinson.

He also pledges to maintain an open forum for various political viewpoints:

"We intend to be wide open to the array of voices that make Portland, well, Portland. But our news coverage will, we hope, be as unbiased as we can be without wringing the last vestige of humanity from our writing. I suspect many of you know what that means, and we’re confident you will help correct us if we stray from straightforward communication."

It appears that two reporters, David Carkhuff and Casey Conley, will provide the bulk of the paper's regular content. Robinson wrote one article in today's edition and invites freelancers to submit samples for consideration.