“Expansion is the thing” was the motto of K.C. Irving, the twentieth-century tycoon who created the Irving family empire. An investigation by the Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting of the Irving-family domination of its New Brunswick homeland and of its growing economic and political influence in Maine suggests that this is still its motto — and that Maine is its expansion target. Continue Reading →
A Republican state senator among those leading the fight to pass legislation to benefit J.D. Irving’s proposal to develop an open-pit mine in the North Woods accepted a free private plane ride to Aroostook from Irving’s lobbyists and didn’t report it to the state ethics commission.
Sen. Thomas Saviello, R-Wilton, said he didn’t need to report the 2013 round-trip ride because its value was not over $300, the threshold for reporting gifts from lobbyists to the Commission on Governmental Ethics and Election Practices, and because the purpose was fact-finding. Continue Reading →
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An Irving family company agreed to reduce by $150,000 the debt a leading Democratic legislator owed to the company – the same legislator, Democratic Rep. John Martin, who has been pushing to loosen state environmental regulations so that another Irving company can mine Bald Mountain in northern Maine. Continue Reading →
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AUGUSTA — State Rep. John Martin is sponsoring a bill that would make it easier for the Canadian-based Irving family to mine for valuable minerals on a Maine mountain at the same time he is negotiating a $250,000 bankruptcy debt with an Irving-family oil business. Martin, a Democrat, is the co-owner of Bald Eagle convenience store in his hometown of Eagle Lake, which Irving Oil Marketing says in bankruptcy filings is $250,000 in debt for gas and diesel deliveries and related charges. Martin acknowledges $150,000 of that debt, but said there is “absolutely” no conflict between owing one Irving company money and his legislation to rewrite the state’s mining laws that would benefit another Irving company. The bill was prompted by the J. D. Irving Company, which is the co-owner of Bald Mountain in Aroostook County. Geological studies have shown the mountain, in an area Martin has represented in the legislature, contains significant deposits of gold, silver, copper and other minerals. Continue Reading →