DEAR SUN SPOTS: Ancient Brothers Masonic Lodge will be holding its third annual Toy Drive in support of LA PAL on Nov. 25 (Black Friday).

Toys and outer winter wear can be dropped off at the Auburn Masonic Hall at 1021 Turner St. in Auburn that day between 6 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Please come out and help us make the holidays bright for our community.

We need building toys such as Legos and models, games for all ages (older kids like Uno and Apples to Apples), science projects; bedroom décor and DIY room decoration projects for teens; chargers, headphones and ear buds for electronic devices; soccer balls, basketballs and footballs; stuffed animals, dolls, action figures, ice skates, sleds and inflatable inner tubes; winter boots and lined, waterproof gloves. Thank you for your support. — Stephen, Auburn

ANSWER: I’m hoping you get a great turnout for this event. For those who can, please share your good fortune by donating to this toy drive so that all kids in the community can experience some joy during the holidays and beyond.

DEAR SUN SPOTS: I have two old Tonka trucks I’d like to have restored for my grandson. Do you know where I can get them sandblasted and re-painted? — Wendy, no town

ANSWER: This sounds like a fun project! There are DIY videos on YouTube and here is an example:


Are there any readers in Sun Spots Land with the ability, equipment, and willingness to take on this project for Wendy? My dad used to do this behind the scenes in his car body shop so I’m wondering if someone with those skills could help.

Please write in if you’re interested in helping Wendy surprise her grandson.

DEAR SUN SPOTS: In Maine, if someone is in an accident and destroys public property such as traffic signals, guardrails or utilities, are they billed for the replacement cost or is it presumed that the state or municipality where the loss occurred will replace it without attempting to collect from the responsible person?  If there is no attempt to collect, why is that acceptable? — Cal, Litchfield

ANSWER: If you have auto insurance with collision coverage, you also can have extra property damage insurance included in your policy.

Most states have laws mandating that drivers carry property damage coverage in some form to cover the damages to another driver’s car in an accident. Beyond that, there is a standard practice for property damage wherein, for example, the city will send the at-fault driver bills for repairs, labor and engineering costs for damaged property.

While most states require you to carry a certain amount for property damage coverage on your auto policy, property damage claims can reach up to $100,000 especially if municipal, county or state property is involved, so it’s good to have far more.

Traffic signs and lights, hydrants, roadside signs, paring meters, guard rails, mailboxes, utility poles, median strips, curbing and sidewalks are examples of what you and your insurance company can be billed for.

Check on what your auto insurance covers and pay the premium for the extra. You may need it some day and be very glad you have it.

This column is for you, our readers. It is for your questions and comments. There are only two rules: You must write to the column and sign your name. We won’t use it if you ask us not to. Please include your phone number. Letters will not be returned or answered by mail, and telephone calls will not be accepted. Your letters will appear as quickly as space allows. Address them to Sun Spots, P.O. Box 4400, Lewiston, ME 04243-4400. Inquiries can also be emailed to [email protected].

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