Portland notebook: More on Mayor Brennan, Red Claw Ricky Davis and holiday recycling

First and foremost, I should start this blog post wishing a speedy recovery to Mayor Michael Brennan, who underwent surgery Christmas weekend to remove a carcinoid tumor from his small intestine.

In some extra tidbits about the mayor’s ordeal the city released last night, City Hall says Brennan plans to return to work on a limited basis next week as he starts to recover from the surgery. In case you missed the original post last night on the BDN’s main page, the tumor was removed and his prognosis is excellent.

Apparently, the cancer developed quickly and by surprise. Here are a couple of sentences of information released by the city last evening:

Mayor Brennan sought treatment for recent stomach cramps two weeks ago, during which the tumor was discovered. … Prior to this diagnosis, Brennan had received an excellent bill of health from his primary care physician during his annual exam in August.

In a statement issued through City Hall Thursday, Brennan reiterated his case for widespread health care access — the mayor two weeks ago was up in Augusta testifying against proposed MaineCare cuts. We had an excerpt from his statement in our piece on the main page last night (thanks to Will Davis and the online crew for reacting quickly to that city announcement, by the way), but here it is in its entirety:

I am extremely grateful to my primary care practitioner, surgeon, nurses and other medical professionals who provided me with exceptional care and I thank them for their treatment and the compassion they extended to me and my family.

Mayor Michael Brennan (Joel Page/BDN)

Cancer can be an extremely frightening diagnosis and I am fortunate to not only have a treatment plan with a very positive long term prognosis but as an insured American have barrier free access to the health care system. My personal story illustrates the fundamental need all Mainers have to be able to access the health care system when they need to. If I had waited or left this disease untreated, both the health consequences and cost of treatment would have been significantly greater.

With nearly one in four Mainers living without health insurance, it’s clear to me that we have a moral responsibility to develop policies and strategies that ensure that everyone has access to high quality care including prevention and diagnostic services. The simple truth is that tens of thousands of Americans will find themselves in the same situation today, tomorrow, or the next day and they should be afforded the same level of care I have been fortunate enough to receive. Lack of health insurance should not force anyone to make a choice between a visit to their primary care physician and groceries or child care or heating oil.

Former Boston Celtic Ricky Davis makes his Red Claws debut in Canton

After my blog post yesterday that Ricky Davis, a former prolific NBA scorer who’s looking to return to the big league by way of the Developmental League, had been signed by the Maine Red Claws, Davis made his debut with the team.

Davis (no relation to the aforementioned Will, that I’m aware of, anyway) joined the local professional basketball team in Canton, Ohio, Thursday for a road game against the Canton Charge. Considering that he didn’t have any time to get acclimated to his new teammates or learn the system in place, Davis, 32, stepped right in and contributed respectably.

The former 20-point-per-game scorer in the NBA (for the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2002-03) pitched in with six points, two rebounds, four assists and two steals — as well as three turnovers — in nearly 25 minutes of in-game action.

I expect some of those numbers to rise as he settles in. Overall Thursday night, the Red Claws lost a 111-98 affair despite strong outputs by Paul Harris (15 points, 11 boards), Kenny Hayes (23 points, four assists) and Justin Brownlee (14 points, eight rebounds).

City reminders on holiday cleanups and dog licenses

We’ve been over this, but just in case, the city issued another reminder this week about how to properly dispose of Christmas trees and what gift packaging can be recycled:

This holiday season, Portland Public Services crews will collect curbside trash and recycling as usual with no changes to the schedule. Crews will collect trash and recycling Monday, Jan. 2. Residents are asked to place their items out by 6:30 a.m. for collection.

Christmas trees can be left for collection on normal trash days between Dec. 27 and Jan. 21.  Trees can also be dropped off at one of the following locations during the month of January: Cutter Street parking lot, Payson Park Little League Field and the nine-hole golf course lot on Riverside Street.

The following items can be recycled:

  • Wrapping paper without foil
  • Cards and envelopes without foil
  • Gift boxes
  • Cardboard and paperboard
  • Paper bags

The following items cannot be recycled and should be placed in a Blue City trash bag for disposal:

  • Ribbon
  • Styrofoam
  • Tinsel
  • Lights
  • Artificial trees

Here’s something I haven’t touched on in this blog, however. Dog licenses. The city issued a reminder to Portland dog owners a few weeks back that I failed to pass along at the time. The good news is, it’s still worth passing along:

Starting with the New Year, Portland resident dog owners are required, pursuant to Maine law, to have all dogs six months of age or older licensed. Dog licenses are issued for a calendar year and will expire Dec. 31. A dog license can be obtained from the City Clerk’s office at City Hall, Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Renewals and new registrations are also available online or through the mail, call 874-8610 for more details.

To license a dog, the dog owner should provide a current State of Maine Rabies Certificate. If the dog has been spayed or neutered, the dog owner should also bring in proof of neutering such as a previous license or written verification of neutering from a veterinarian the first time a dog is licensed.

Fees for dog licenses are:
Spayed or neutered — $6.00
Not spayed or neutered — $11.00
Late fee $25.00 (per dog) applies after 1/31/12

Seth Koenig

About Seth Koenig

Seth has nearly a decade of professional journalism experience and writes about the greater Portland region.