Ally Karter began the meeting by asking the Rotarians present to pause for a moment of silence in memory of fellow Rotarians Louis Rancourt and Ray Kozen, who passed away since our last meeting.


Sergeant at Arms
Frank Prelgovisk was our Sergeant of Arms. Today and did a great job!

Cam McKay welcomed us into the meeting today!

50/50 Tickets
Ken Viens sold $110 worth of 50/50 tickets. Kim Lindlof won $55 in the raffle.  Kim will sell tickets in two week.  Charlie Gaunce won 10 free tickets to the next 50/50 drawing.  Ryan Liberty will be the greeter for meeting on February 23rd.

Fined for pictures in the Paper
Eric Haley had his picture in the paper last week was fined accordingly.

World Service Cups
The World Service cups will support the Quarry Road Trail Project.

Visiting Rotarians and Guests
John Picchiotti introduced J.T. Weaver-LaMountain from the Maine Center for Integrative Rehabilitation.

Allan Rancourt introduced Norm Gosline, a visiting Rotarian from the Gardiner Club.

Happy Dollars
Ally had 3 Happy Dollars today:  For Pat Fleming, our guest speaker whose son is a good friend of her step-son's;  for Cam McKay, who developed and distributed the meeting invitation cards; and for Eric Haley, who was selected to become the new Superintendant  of the newly developed OCS (Waterville, Winslow, and Vassalboro)

Barbara Woodlee was happy for the support that KVCC received at Saturday evening's fund raising event.

Patti Newmen shared that she had a great trip to St. John for a vacation over the past couple of weeks.

Tom McGowan shared that in March the Bangor Savings Bank will be distributing grants to non-profit organizations in the region and are determining the distribution based on voting from the community.   All listed organizations will receive $1,000 and the one organization receiving  the most votes in a region will receive $5,000.  Tom encouraged the group to go online and vote for the organization they feel should receive this funding.  Secondly, Tom shared that he found a DVD belonging to the Waterville Public Library in a DVD player that he purchased over the week end from a local retailer.  Sarah wasn't present to receive it and Tom assured the Club that he will insure that it is returned to its rightful owner.

Peter Garrett reflected on the opening of the Quarry Road Trail that took place on Saturday, noting that there were 100 cross country skiers and 100 snow shoe-ers.   He described the trail system and their plans for the future and encouraged everyone to take advantage of this new addition to the Kennebec Messalonskee Trail System.

Ally shared that she has a Happy Dollar from Jerry Tipper for both winning the pot a couple of weeks ago and for the 3 months he will be spending in Florida.

Debbi Knox announced that the Quarry Road Trail will be the beneficiary of the Happy Dollars and cups for the month of February.

Upcoming speaker schedule:


February 23, 2009          Jenny Chen, Colby freshman & founder of an international magazine

March 2, 2009     Carol L. Coffin, District 7790 PolioPlus co-chair

  Today's Program:  A Presentation on the Maine State Police

 (Col. Patrick Fleming)

Colonel Fleming has been with the State Police since 1984 and this was his first attendance at a Rotary meeting. He thanked the Club for its good work.

 The Maine State Police was established in 1925 with 60 Troopers and was called the State Highway Patrol Team. They were given a pistol, law book, and a motorcycle and worked year-round. In its first 3 years, the team lost 3 troopers in the line of duty to motorcycle accidents. He told a story of one trooper who had a trained bear. It rode in his sidecar and helped with weight distribution. The first patrol cars came on in 1936.

 Application process is about one year. First is a written test and then an oral test by a Board that grills you for about an hour. This is followed by two physical fitness tests, a polygraph test, background check, and psychological evaluation, then candidate gets to sit down with him and he makes the decision as to whether you will be a Maine State Trooper.

 All police officers must complete a 16-week training program in Vassalboro. It is a Monday thru Friday program and "they own you." This is where all officers go for their initial training. Upon graduation, we have a 9-week academy of advanced training, and after that, 45 days of field training with a veteran officer on the road. The new officers are under constant review and critique regarding how they adapt to the job.

 The application and training programs are vigorous. It's a big investment and to get the return on our money we have to make sure we have the right person for the job. Troopers work on their own; one person to each car.

Col. Fleming's first assignment as a trooper was New Portland. Being from Boston, he thought he was headed for the "big city!" There were no apartments available there. he found a place to live in North Anson.  He covered Skowhegan, Jackman, and Rockland - a lot of area to cover. His second patrol area was even bigger - Franklin County, which he covered alone.

 There are 330 sworn members and 132 civilians with 8 field troops from Alfred to Holton. There are 180 troopers wearing blue uniforms and riding in cruisers.

 The Maine State Police has 3 criminal investigative units responsible for burglary and child abuse investigations. Others include a tactical team, crisis negotiation team, water recovery team, and a team working with canines, nearly all of which are part timers. They have a state crime lab which maintains a computer crimes task force and deals with people into child porn. It also helps banks get information from their surveillance cameras after robberies.

There were 31 homicides in Maine last year; 19 of those were related to domestic violence.  He stressed that we all need to watch for signs of domestic abuse among our employees: receiving phone calls and often being upset afterward; taking excessive sick time; having a lot of accidents and bruises.

 As for their budget, they have been treated very well by the Governor. He noted that they are keeping our cars on the road longer.

 Troopers start getting paid as soon as they are hired and sent to the academy - day 1.

 As for guns, people need to know how to use them.

CSI shows are becoming a problem for law enforcement. Even for low-level crimes when you've got the perpetrator, hands down, they won't convict without fingerprints, DNA, etc.

In the early 90s, the average highway speed was in the low 70s. Today, high 80s. Not unusual to have one or two over 100. They  see most of them on their blackberrys and cell phones. There are about 5 bills currently in the legislature about use of cell phones while driving. They like when people concentrate on their driving and like when people are not distracted. Not sure outlawing cell phones is the answer because there are so many other things people do while they're driving.

There being no further questions, Ally presented Col. Fleming with a Four Way Test key chain as a token of the Club's appreciation for sharing their remarks with us.

The next meeting will be on Monday, February 23nd when the speaker will be Jenny Chen, a freshman at Colby.