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N.H.'s Civic Health Could Use a Boost

As hosts of the first-in-the-nation presidential primary, Granite Staters often claim a reputation for political sophistication and civic engagement. But a new report finds that relatively few residents are politically involved and, when Election Day rolls around, they are more likely to accept the status quo and stay home rather than cast a ballot.
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Find all the news from the campaign trail here.

Chris Jensen for NHPR

The resurrection of the closed Balsams Resort in the North Country got past a critical hurdle Thursday as state officials approved a request to take water from the Androscoggin River for snowmaking.

The Department of Environmental Services report said the Balsams’ developers could take about 22 million gallons of water a day and pump it about nine miles to the resort.

The economy is always a key issue in presidential campaigns.

But whose economy are we talking about? Many millennial voters are underemployed and crushed under thousands of dollars of student debt.

And perhaps nowhere is the problem more acute than in New Hampshire.

Seventy-six percent of the class of 2013 had loans. On average, each New Hampshire student was carrying $32,795 of debt, according to The Project on Student Debt. It's the nation's biggest student loan debt burden.

Sean Hurley

In 2012, the New Hampshire Mushroom Company was producing two hundred pounds of mushrooms a week in their 5000 square foot farm-warehouse in Tamworth - and struggling to sell them.  Three years later, with seven full-time employees, the farm can't keep up with the demand, selling out their weekly stock of 1,200 pounds of edible fungus usually within 24 hours. 

Dennis Chesley, part owner of the New Hampshire Mushroom Company, says there's very little gray area when it comes to mushrooms.  It's either love or hate -

Arun Yenumula/flickr

The president of the University of New Hampshire says he’s troubled by a guide found on the school’s website that referred to the term “American” as politically incorrect.

In a statement, President Mark Huddleston says he’s among those offended by the bias-free language guide, which has since been removed from its website.

The guide discourages use of the term “American,” and suggests instead saying, “U.S. citizen” or “resident of the U.S.”

NH Attorney General

 

The man accused of kidnapping a 14-year-old girl and raping her over the course of nine months has been indicted on new charges that he threatened the lead prosecutor in the case.

Nathaniel Kibby of Gorham is scheduled to go on trial in March 2016. Prosecutors say the 35-year-old Kibby kidnapped the girl on her way home from school in Conway on Oct. 9, 2013, then imprisoned her in his home and a storage unit until July 2014, when she returned home. He faces more than 200 charges in Carroll and Coos counties.

Vox Efx / Flickr Creative Commons

 

A Concord non-profit is calling for greater voter participation and civic engagement in New Hampshire as it releases a study showing poor performance in both areas.

The group, Open Democracy, is holding a press conference Thursday morning at the Legislative Office Building to discuss the findings of a 9-month research project. The project measured areas such as voter registration and turnout, volunteerism, political donations, lobbying, diversity of representation and the competitiveness of New Hampshire elections.

NHPR/Hannah McCarthy

New Jersey Governor and Republican presidential candidate Chris Christie visited Manchester on Wednesday to answer audience questions at the Americans for Peace, Prosperity and Security Forum.

PORTLAND, Maine — The Salt Institute for Documentary Studies is in talks with the Maine College of Art on a merger plan that could allow the Portland-based school to remain open.

Deepwater Wind has installed the first of five steel foundations for a wind farm that will sit three miles off the coast of Block Island. The project is expected to produce enough energy to power 17,000 homes. State and federal officials got an up-close look at construction for the first time yesterday. Rhode Island Public Radio environmental reporter Ambar Espinoza was with them, and she reports that Rhode Island has become an example for how to build renewable energy. 

portraits of Thomas Jefferson and Andrew Jackson
Rembrandt Peale, courtesy White House Historical Association/Thomas Sully, courtesy US Senate

New Hampshire Democrats are set to take up a question several other state parties have considered in recent weeks: should the party rename its annual Jefferson-Jackson Dinner?

Spokesperson Lizzy Price says state party chair Ray Buckley brought the question to the party's executive committee, which referred it to another panel. That committee, Price says, will "discuss the issue and offer any recommendations back to the executive committee."

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The Exchange

Wikimedia Commons

Why You Should Know About New Hampshire Governor John Winant

He was governor of New Hampshire, the first head of the Social Security Administration, and U.S. ambassador to Great Britain during World War II. Yet John Gilbert Winant remains little known among Americans. We unearth the history of this unsung Granite Stater and hear about an effort to memorialize his contributions.
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Word Of Mouth

The Shame Show

From Hester Prynne’s Scarlet Letter to stockades in the town square, public shaming has deep roots in America. Today on Word of Mouth: humiliation hits the 21st century.
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Something Wild

Pam Hunt; NH Audubon

Something Wild: New Hampshire's Dragonflies Abound

We’re standing up to our shins in Turkey Pond, on a warm July morning with Pam Hunt, a biologist with New Hampshire Audubon who has spent the last five years organizing, in conjunction with NH Fish and Game, the New Hampshire Dragonfly Survey. Hunt trained about a hundred volunteers to gather data and help map the distribution of dragonflies across the state. They found 163 species throughout the state from the salt marshes on the coast to Lake of the Clouds, which at 5,050 feet is the...
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