News

Joyce Maynard longed for a great romance. A passionate partner -- and one who wouldn't interfere with the fierce independence she'd cultivated over decades as a writer.

She found that romance, later in life, but her marriage ended up teaching her the true meaning of partnership and self-sacrifice. Virginia Prescott speaks with Maynard about her newest book, "The Best of Us," where she chronicles her marriage to Jim Barringer, and their fight against the cancer that took his life.

Dan Tuohy/NHPR

Eighty-one people from thirty-seven different countries became U.S. citizens Friday at the New Hampshire Statehouse.

The naturalization ceremony was the first in nearly twenty years held in Representatives Hall.

Presiding Justice Landya McCafferty says it was a special event to coincide with Constitution Week.

Luis Jimenez savored every minute of it. He came to America from the Dominican Republic in the late 1980s. Now he’s a surgeon who lives in Hollis.

“It’s a good feeling. Like you belong,” he says.

Weekly N.H. News Roundup: September 22, 2017

14 hours ago

The Graham-Cassidy healthcare proposal receives mixed response in the Granite State. Community college officials are grilled by New Hampshire lawmakers concerned about a recent audit.  And V.A. whistle blowers raise concerns about continued problems at the facility.


wine4food.com

It is that time of year when Honeycrisp apples are abundant, orchards are packed with families, and the leaves are just starting to turn. And one of the best ways to celebrate the onset of fall is indulging in New England’s seasonal food traditions.

But when it comes to regional foods, what is quintessentially New Hampshire, and what’s just New England-y? 

Paige Sutherland/NHPR

National politicians, local law enforcement and education officials met in Manchester Friday to promote the importance of early childhood education in the state’s fight against opioids.

Paige Sutherland/NHPR

Needle exchange programs are now legal in New Hampshire. But since the state is providing no financial support or other resources for them, some groups are wondering how to go about starting one.

One group in Strafford County is taking on that guiding role.

If you're planning to travel toward the Lakes Region on Sunday you should expect a lot of traffic.

An estimated 60,000 people and roughly 30,000 cars will be headed to the NASCAR race at 2 p.m. in Loudon that day.

That means major roads heading in that direction, both before and after the race, will be backed up. Bill Boyton with the state’s Department of Transportation says drivers should plan accordingly.

School districts, municipalities and other community groups across New Hampshire are in line to receive a boost of federal funding for programs related to fighting the opioid crisis. 

In all, local groups are slated to collectively receive more than $2 million, most of it coming from the Office of National Drug Control Policy. 

Robert Wilson/flickr

A bid to bring the pumpkin festival back to Keene prevailed Thursday night after an unexpected last minute challenge from local officials.

Keene's mayor cast a tie-breaking vote at the city council meeting to allow the event to go forward.

In the past, the festival has broken world records for the most lit jack-o-lanterns in one place. But it was canceled in 2014 after riots broke out. Now. organizers are planning a much smaller, kid-focused festival.

Recently the Something Wild team went for a hike. One thing to bear in mind when walking with knowledgeable biologists like Chris and Dave, is that hikes take longer than they might if you were walking on your own. 

Department of Human Health and Services

The state Division of Children, Youth, and Families, or DCYF, has been criticized for its handling of child abuse cases.

The division came under scrutiny following the deaths of two young girls whose cases were under review.

Now, legislative action is being taken to try and resolve those issues.

Christine Tappan was confirmed as the associate commissioner of Health and Human Services last week. Her hire is part of a reorganization of DCYF. She’ll oversee the agency where she actually worked before, from 2008 to 2012.

Thomas Fearon

The Deputy Commissioner of the Department of Health and Human Services is preparing for a new role: CEO of New Hampshire Hospital. But it won’t be Shibinette’s first time working there.

One of her first jobs out of nursing school was as a charge nurse and relief shift supervisor, working primarily with geriatric patients at Thayer Building, part of the hospital campus.

Gov. Chris Sununu issued an executive order Thursday creating a new forum aimed squarely at younger Granite Staters: an official “Millennial Advisory Council.”

Sununu, who hails from Generation X and also holds the distinction of being the nation’s youngest sitting governor, wasn’t immediately available for comment on the new panel. So this author — who, in the interest of full disclosure, is also a millennial — caught up with a few of her fellow Granite State twentysomethings about what they want to see out of this new group.

Prescription Drug Treatment Info / Flickr/CC

New Hampshire's political and law enforcement leaders are coming together to promote early education to prevent substance misuse.

Officials with Spark NH, a nonpartisan early childhood advisory council, say public support for prevention programs is growing given the state's opioid crisis, but most discussions focus on middle school or later. The group is partnering with Manchester Police Chief Nick Willard and state and congressional officials to highlight the importance of programs and services for younger children.

NH Community Seafood

Last May, we reported on New Hampshire Community Seafood's effort to sign on at least 1,000 people for their community supported fishery, or CSF. A CSF is like a farm share, where subscribers can pick up seafood at various locations throughout the season. 

The push for new members was driven by a desire to support New Hampshire's ground fishermen. Their deadline was the end of summer, and with that now upon us, Andrea Tomlinson, manager of New Hampshire Community Seafood, joins NHPR's Peter Biello with an update.

Listen to their conversation right here:

Flickr courtesy

Race weekend is here and it's the last hurrah for the NASCAR September series at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. 

Tim Sink, president of the Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce, says this season finale has fans in a celebratory mood, even if it is a little bittersweet.

Track owners announced earlier this year that the Loudon speedway would not host the September race starting in 2018. Speedway Motorsports owns Las Vegas Motor Speedway and New Hampshire Motor Speedway, and plans to move the fall Monster Energy and Camping World Truck Series races to Las Vegas next fall.

Emily Corwin/NHPR

Prisoners in New Hampshire can now get handmade drawings and pictures in the mail again.

In 2015 the state’s Department of Correction issued a ban in an effort to prevent Suboxone from being smuggled into the prison. Officials had found small amounts of the drug hidden in drawings or pictures sent to inmates.

New Hampshire State Police

A 19-year-old mystery may have been solved Tuesday when authorities pulled a pickup truck out of the Androscoggin River containing what are believed to be the remains of Tony Imondi. The truck was discovered in the river a few miles south of Errol Village.

This story originally appeared in The Berlin Daily Sun.

The Oyster River School District will be requiring diversity training for all staff in the wake of an alleged racist bullying incident earlier this month.

Superintendent Jim Morse says the trainings will be led by a member of the state health department who specializes in racial minority affairs. Morse says the training will be required for every district employee, including himself.

Gov. Chris Sununu is continuing to beat the drum for Amazon’s attention — in media interviews, at least — as the online shopping giant scouts out a second location for its headquarters.

www.visitnhcolleges.com

The former president of Keene State College, Anne Huot, received a severance payout of more than $300,000 after stepping down earlier this year.

The University System of New Hampshire said Huot would take a year of unpaid leave when it announced her resignation in June. But she received a $327,225 severance payment following her resignation.

The college has recently struggled to contain its deficit. Officials say low enrollment is largely to blame. Todd Leach, chancellor of the state university system, was unavailable Thursday to comment on the severance agreement.

FILE

Incumbent Manchester Mayor Ted Gatsas and former alderman Joyce Craig will face off again in the race for mayor this November.

That’s after the pair claimed the top two spots in Tuesday's city primary election.

Britta Greene / NHPR

Over the next several months, the Claremont schools will take a closer look at issues of discrimination and bullying in the district. This comes after an alleged racially motivated attack of a young boy in town by local teenagers.

Awareness of the severity of concussions among young athletes has continued to spread among parents and schools within the last few years.

Meanwhile, the athletic staff at Kennett Middle and High Schools in North Conway have seen a decline in concussions among their students.

Neal Weaver is the athletic director for Kennett High School. Morning Edition Host Rick Ganley spoke with him by phone about the school’s efforts to reduce the number of concussions among athletes.

This transcript has been edited lightly for clarity.

NHPR File

A federal audit of how New Hampshire manages federal education funds has found six areas of significant concern.

The U.S. Department of Education completed a fiscal review of how the state education department administers federal grants last fall, reviewing 19 areas. In its recently issued report, auditors rated the state satisfactory on eight measures and said it is meeting requirements, but should make improvements, in five other areas.

At least 226 people have died from drug overdoses in New Hampshire so far this year. That number is likely to grow, with at least 100 more likely drug deaths still awaiting review by the state medical examiner.

Echoing a pattern we've seen for the last few years, fentanyl is responsible for most of the deaths seen so far in 2017 — almost three-quarters, to be exact.

Wikimedia Commons

Phillips Exeter Academy and the Exeter Police Department have announced a new agreement concerning the reporting of sexual assaults on campus.

A new memorandum of understanding between the prestigious prep school and the local police department outlines procedures they say will help keep students safe from abuse of all kinds.

NPR

Both New Hampshire US Senators are criticizing Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price for reportedly taking private jets around the country for official government business.

 

NHPR File

New Hampshire Lottery Director Charlie McIntyre says Granite Staters currently spend about $25 million a year playing keno in Massachusetts.

That is one reason the state is upbeat about a new law that gives cities and towns the option to allow keno gambling. A projected $9 million in revenue will help fund full-day kindergarten.

Voters in eleven cities will weigh that ballot question this fall. But not everyone is so gung-ho about it.

Downtown Portsmouth.
Squirrel Flight via Flickr/Creative Commons: http://www.flickr.com/photos/squirrelflight/1355544138/in/photostream/

The Portsmouth City Council has banned the use of what it calls ‘synthetic toxic pesticides’ in public spaces, citing concerns about public health.

The new policy is largely aimed at weed killing chemicals the city sprays on sidewalks and streets.

Portsmouth city councilor Jim Splaine put forward the motion, which was approved Monday night.

“We may be tonight adopting New Hampshire’s first very clear and strong position against synthetic toxic pesticides. This is a step in the right direction.”

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