In this Jan. 7, 2022, file photo, Steve Lacount shovels snow, double-masked and in a T-shirt, near Portland’s Monument Square. Credit: Troy R. Bennett / BDN

Today is Thursday. The highs will be in the mid-teens to low 30s from north to south, with a chance for scattered snow showers and gradually clearing skies. Here’s what we’re talking about in Maine today.

The latest on the coronavirus in Maine

Thirty more Mainers have died and another 1,545 coronavirus cases have been reported across the state, according to the Maine Center of Disease Control and Prevention. The statewide death toll now stands at 1,688.  Check out our tracker for more information.

Five corrections officers and two inmates have tested positive for COVID-19 at the Knox County Jail in Rockland — the first outbreak for the jail since the pandemic began.

Opposing a new mandate, Belfast city councilors unanimously voted Tuesday night to direct the city manager to draft a proclamation in favor of mask-wearing. That comes as the town of Freeport imposed an indoor mask mandate, and the South Portland City Council will vote next week whether to require masks to be worn indoors. Mandates are already in place in Portland and Brunswick, where some businesses are grappling with unruly anti-maskers.

More than 200 students and staff members across the University of Maine System are infected with COVID-19 amid the rapid spread of the omicron variant within the state, according to the system’s daily virus updates.

Bates College has given each of its students 25 free N95 or KN95 masks as the spring semester gets underway.

Backlog leaves 46K positive COVID-19 tests out of Maine’s daily case counts

The state has approximately 46,000 positive COVID-19 tests from the last few weeks that have not made daily case counts because it has not been possible to process the tests quickly enough.

As omicron took hold across US, the delta variant held on in Maine

An analysis of virus test samples taken by Walgreens pharmacies across the nation showed that Maine had the highest percentage of delta variant.

Mainers’ physical and mental health has gotten worse during the COVID-19 pandemic

The wider physical and mental health problems developing during the pandemic could create greater stresses once COVID-19 subsides.

Susan Collins and Angus King aren’t backing stock trading ban for members of Congress

It mirrors a broader debate that has created odd alliances and pitted rank-and-file members against congressional leaders.

Funds raised in failed bid to challenge Janet Mills in primary went to former Portland mayor’s nonprofit

Senate President Troy Jackson, D-Allagash, who has deep ties to organized labor, always maintained he had no interest in challenging Mills.

Gas plant at Old Town landfill could heat 10,500 homes, but would require a new pipeline

Bangor Natural Gas has been working to strike a deal so gas from the landfill could flow into the utility’s distribution system.

Vogue is really excited about one of these upcoming Portland restaurants

Twelve is one of America’s most anticipated restaurant openings of 2022.

Landmark Rockland harbor restaurant slated to reopen this summer

Despite the prime location, The Pearl — and the restaurants previously located there — has struggled.

Lobstermen fear offshore tracking data would be used against them

Maine lobstermen have objected to a proposal from interstate fishing managers that would require them to have electronic trackers on their boats.

We want to answer your questions about this year’s more complicated tax returns

The Bangor Daily News would like to help you sort through the intricacies of this year’s taxes. Let us know your most pressing questions using this form.

Wanted: An opponent for the UMaine men’s hockey team

If UMaine can’t find a game or two this weekend, it will mean the Black Bears will play just one game in a three-week span.

In other Maine news …

Man killed in Bucksport 3-vehicle crash has been identified

Overnight fatal crash discovered in Portland near I-295

Portland police officer charged with assault

Maine saw a record number of overdose deaths in 2021

Dedham man sentenced to 4 years in prison for serious injuries to 2-year-old in 2020

2021 was the warmest year on record for the Gulf of Maine

Personal info of 146 Mainers shared in tax document upload error

Despite pandemic challenges, craft breweries added more than $260M to Maine’s economy in 2020

UMass Lowell earns 1st ever road win over UMaine women’s basketball team

Skowhegan basketball star Jaycie Christopher is determined to win a state championship

Supporters of consumer-owned utility now aiming for 2023 Maine ballot