Press Release by Steven Haycock, Publicity Director
Rockland, Maine – The 139th Annual Session of the Maine State Grange held at the Rockland Elks Club was called to order by Master (President) of the Maine State Grange Patrick J. Brewer. A total 150 delegates representing 90 different Granges adopted nine resolutions including five resolutions that will be presented to the Maine State Legislature and or forwarded on to the 146th Annual Session of the National Grange of the Order of Patrons of Husbandry this November in Boise, Idaho.
Resolutions adopted were:
Resolved that the Maine State Grange support legislation in Maine and across the nation that would require all pre-owned homes to be equipped with working smoke detectors at the time the title of the property passes to the new owners.
Resolved, that the procurement of military supplies, especially flags, be done only from U.S. companies, and be it further Resolved, that for the purposes of military procurement the term local be expanded for purposes of this resolution to mean derived from, assembled and “Made in the U.S.A.”, and be it further Resolved, that all military procurement be locally contracted, and be it further Resolved, that non-local procurement be allowed as long as a local source does not exists.
Resolved, that the Maine State Grange and National Grange support strict mandatory sentences for those who “leak” classified or confidential (government) information.
To support legislation in Maine and across the nation that would require all new and pre-owned homes to be equipped with working carbon monoxide detectors at the time the title of the property passes to the new owners.
Resolved that the National Grange initiate legislation to properly fund Social Security and Medicare by increasing payroll taxes (and increase the amount of taxable wages in the case of Social Security) so that full benefits can be continued for all future generations of seniors, and be it further Resolved, that the National Grange oppose any decrease in benefits or increases in retirement age.
A resolution encouraging legislation that would address the growing problem of Human Trafficking in Maine was tabled by the delegates until next year so further research could be done on the subject.
Chaplain of the Maine State Grange Clyde Berry led a beautiful and meaningful memorial service. Featuring tributes to Flora of the Maine State Grange Kathy Brewer who passed away in May, and Clayton Clark, past member of the Executive Committee.
Five Granges were recognized for outstanding Community Service. Each Grange had to submit a notebook/scrapbook to be judged by an outside committee to determine the winners.
The winners for 2012 were:
- 1st Place Riverside Grange #475 in Lebanon
- 2nd Place Maple Grove Grange #148 in Sebago
- 3rd Place Wilson Grange #321 in East Wilton
- 4th Place (Tie) Valley Grange #144 in Guilford
- 4th Place (Tie) Bangor Grange #372 in Bangor
While the Maine State Grange did not achieve a net gain in membership, the following top five Granges were recognized for achieving a net gain in membership:
- 1st Place Bangor #372 in Bangor
- 2nd Place (Tie) Garland #76 in Garland
- 2nd Place (Tie) Parkman #205 in Parkman
- 3rd Place (Tie) Aurora #202 in Strong
- 3rd Place (Tie) Rumford #115 in Rumford
Other awards presented throughout the session included
- Tree Farmer of the Year: Ernest & Alberta Angevine of Bethel
- Grange Farm Family: Henry, Teresa, Andrew, Marjorie & Ashley Hardy of the Hardy Farm in Farmington
- Riverside Grange #475 was recoginized as the Subordinate Grange of the Year by the Former Officers of the Maine State Grange
Karen Flagg, Director of Women’s Activities of the Maine State Grange presented Steven Mayberry of Maine Children’s Home for Little Wanderers a check for $200.00 and $200.00 worth of new toys for their annual Holiday project. She also presented a representative of House in the Woods, a retreat for Veterans, with a generous donation and members brought forward jars of pennies to donate to the project.
On Friday Duane Scott, Member of Executive Committee of the National Grange & Master of the Wisconsin State Grange gave a very interesting speech about the National Grange and the future of the Grange in general. Following, the Officers of the Maine State Grange assisted by Past Master Steve Verrill conferred the 6thDegree or the Degree on Flora on 21 new members.
On Saturday the attention was on Youth and Junior’s of the Maine State Grange. Many announcements and awards were given. This was followed by the Trustees of the Educational Aid & Howe’s Nurses Fund presenting six $600.00 scholarships for a total of $3,600.00. The recipients of the Educational Aid Scholarships were Ryan Brown, Mariah Dollof, Joshua Maines, Timothy Maines, and William Clark III. The recipient of the Howe’s Nurses Scholarship was Jordan Spencer. Agnes Nelson, Co-Agricultural Director of the Maine State Grange announced that in May three $500.00 Agriculture Scholarships were presented to Caleb Glazier, Garrett J. Hemphill & Ashley N. Hardy.
The session concluded with James Owens, Priest Annalist of the National Grange & Past Master of the Maine State Grange, installing Roberta Meserve a member of Danville Junction Grange as Flora of the Maine State Grange and Nancy R. Clark of Harraseeket Grange as a member of Executive Committee for four years. Plans are already in the works for the 140th Annual Session in Skowhegan in October 2013.