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Maine businesses speak out against east-west highway plan

12:33 PM, Apr 30, 2013   |    comments
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AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) - More than 100 small Maine businesses are speaking out against the proposed east-west highway, saying the toll road would siphon away cross-state traffic that serves as their lifeblood.

A list of 125 businesses that oppose the highway was presented Tuesday in advance of a legislative hearing on six bills to slow down or kill the project. Plans call for a 220-mile toll highway between Calais and Coburn Gore, which provide a direct route across the state for Maine and Canadian truckers.

At a news conference Tuesday, Chick Peabody, a rafting business owner in The Forks, said businesses along Routes 2, 201 and other highways could be impacted if traffic is diverted to the proposed highway.

Project backers say the highway would bring economic benefits, including construction and maintenance jobs.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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