A man wearing a mask walks by a drugstore on Congress Street in Portland on Wednesday Feb. 24, 2021. Credit: Troy R. Bennett / BDN

Today is Monday. Temperatures will be in the high 30s to low 40s from north to south, with rain and snow throughout the statewide. Here’s what we’re talking about in Maine today.

Here’s the latest on the coronavirus and Maine

Another Mainer died and another 142 coronavirus cases were reported across the state on Sunday, according to the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention. The death toll statewide is now 703. Check out our COVID-19 Tracker for more information.

The Augusta hospital that came under fire for offering early coronavirus vaccines to donors last month had been cited by the state earlier in January for violating COVID-19 prevention protocols.

Maine is rolling back pandemic restrictions more slowly than its neighbors

A man wearing a mask walks by a papered-over storefront on Congress Street in Portland on Wednesday. Credit: Troy R. Bennett / BDN

Maine has seen few changes since November, when Gov. Janet Mills delayed bar reopenings and reduced indoor gathering limits.

Rural Maine is seeing an influx of homebuyers during the pandemic

Mark Lipscombe (left) and his wife Nina stand in front of their residence, located on Main Street in Houlton. Mark, who is from Australia, and Nina, who is from Tennessee, are an example of the newcomers arriving to Aroostook County following the COVID-19 pandemic. Credit: Alexander MacDougall / Houlton Pioneer Times

No one could have guessed before the pandemic that Maine’s most rural counties would become the hottest real estate markets in the state.

Mainers 60 and older will qualify for COVID-19 vaccines in switch to age-based system

In this Feb. 3, 2021, file photo, Maine Health Senior Pharmacy Director Andrea Lai gives Alice Goshorn, 78, of South Portland a COVID-19 vaccination shot inside the former Scarborough Downs horse racing track. Credit: Troy R. Bennett / BDN

The age-based system replaces a previous plan to prioritize adults with underlying conditions as well as some frontline workers after Mainers age 70 and older who are currently eligible, and would be the only one in the country exactly like it.

PLUS: Maine hospitals anticipate another surge in demand for COVID-19 vaccines after state officials announced residents aged 60 and older would be next in line for shots, an extension to a greater population than previously anticipated.

ALSO: A federal advisory panel recommended a third COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use in the U.S. on Friday, a development certain to accelerate the immunization effort in Maine and across the country. Here’s what Mainers need to know about the new 1-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

Jared Golden 1 of 2 Democratic no votes as House passes $1.9T virus aid bill

U.S. Rep. Jared Golden hikes up Black Mountain in Rumford in this Aug. 20, 2020, file photo. The second-term congressman from Maine’s 2nd District was one of two Democrats to oppose his party’s $1.9 trillion coronavirus aid package early Saturday.

The $1.9 trillion pandemic relief bill still easily cleared the chamber in an early win for President Joe Biden.

A post on Snowmobile Northern Maine’s Facebook page shows this 75-foot diameter ice carousel created on Long Lake in Sinclair in April 2017. Credit: Courtesy of Snowmobile Northern Maine

Roger Morneault, a licensed master plumber from St. Agatha, has designed an ice cutting machine and ice disc spinner he hopes will help Maine reclaim the title.

Penobscot and Piscataquis counties have the highest backlog of criminal cases than anywhere else in the state

Carine Reeves appears at his murder trial at the Penobscot Judicial Center in Bangor in September 2020. Reeves’ trial was one of the few jury trials that have taken place since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Credit: Natalie Williams / BDN

That’s likely the result of prosecutors in those two counties continuing to file more charges than their counterparts elsewhere, and offering defendants fewer favorable plea deals to resolve cases.

Hermon proposes building $2M track at high school and restoring athletic field

Siblings Lyndsee Reed, a sophomore, and Eli Reed, a senior, walk in to Hermon High School together for one of their in-person school days in this Sept. 30, 2020, file photo. Credit: Linda Coan O'Kresik / BDN

The new track would be built on unused land next to the tennis courts at Hermon High School. As part of the $2.2 million project, the town would also renovate Pottle Field, where Hermon High athletes play soccer and football, and add a storage building and bleachers.

There are scorpions in Maine, and they’re probably in your house

Tiny pseudoscorpions are common in Maine and really quite beneficial in controlling insect pests. Credit: Courtesy of James Dill

They are also known as book scorpions because they are often found around books preying on book lice.

These trail cam wild boars live in Texas, and they can stay there

A wild boar makes its way toward a deer feeder in this trail camera photo. Credit: Courtesy of Mike Terrill

We don’t have wild boars here in Maine. And that’s a good thing.

In other Maine news…

Maine funeral home worker allegedly stole wedding ring from woman after her death

Feds taking final comments about plan to save right whales

2 now dead after Farmington house fire

Former Belfast teacher expected to plead guilty to child porn charges

Drunk people used to fuel an old-school pizza joint in the Old Port. The pandemic changed that.

Maine anticipates $1.6B in pandemic relief bill if and when it’s passed