News

Sam Evans-Brown

Manchester Mayor Ted Gatsas is suing a former alderman and a critic, saying he was defamed by their accusations that he covered up a sexual assault at a high school.

The lawsuit in Hillsborough County Superior Court targets former Alderman William Cashin and critic Jon Hopwood, who wrote to aldermen accusing Gatsas of "engineering a cover-up."

WMUR reports that the lawsuit says the men "knowingly made false allegations."

New Futures

Governor Chris Sununu signed a bill yesterday that decriminalizes possession of three quarters of an ounce of marijuana or less. Instead of jail time, a person caught with a small amount of pot will now face up to 100 dollars in fines for a first offense.

Paige Sutherland/NHPR

New Hampshire authorities are investigating a possible opioid overdose by a 6-year-old boy in Manchester.

Police say they were called to an apartment early Tuesday for an unresponsive child. Police say it's unclear how the boy became incapacitated. They say he was revived after Narcan was administered by first responders and remains hospitalized.

The incident happened the same day Gov. Chris Sununu and the state's new "drug czar" visited a Dover bakery to discuss the state's opioid crisis.

istock photo

The New Hampshire Insurance Department is seeking a federal waiver aimed at lowering the price of health insurance for next year’s Obamacare plans, but Governor Chris Sununu opposes part of the Department’s idea for how to do it.

Wikimedia Commons

The New Hampshire Department of Transportation and its counterpart in Vermont are considering repairs to a bridge between the two states that’s been closed since 2009. The Vilas Bridge was built in 1930 and stretches over the Connecticut River between North Walpole, N.H. and Bellows Falls, Vt.

Paige Sutherland/NHPR

In the spirit of summer, Gov. Chris Sununu and New Hampshire's Executive Councilor had a little fun at Wednesday’s regular meeting, starting the morning with a boat ride and ending it with arcade games.

Supporters of the Prescott Park Arts Festival say complaints about alcohol use at concerts this summer are overblown.

Police in Portsmouth say they plan to step up enforcement of the alcohol ban at the festival, after complaints were filed with the state attorney general's charitable trust unit.

Thomas Fearon / NHPR

There was a "catastrophic mechanical pipe failure" at the Manchester VA Medical Center early Wednesday morning, causing flooding and severe water damage on a number of floors.

The pipe failure occurred at about 4 a.m., according to a statement.

Officials at the facility say they are in the process of contacting patients with appointments in the affected areas.

Health care services provided on the first and second floor were not impacted.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

State Senate candidates David Boutin, Republican and former state Senator, Kevin Cavanaugh, Democrat and Manchester alderman, and Jason Dubrow, a Libertarian active in town government in Dunbarton, joined The Exchange to discuss issues important to New Hampshire voters. Voting takes place on July 25. 

Gilford Police Department

Police in Gilford spent Tuesday afternoon corralling a herd of buffalo that got loose from a local farm.

Police said on Facebook that the buffalo were "scared and running." They asked drivers not to approach the buffalo or blow their car horns.

WMUR reports that by Tuesday evening, all of the buffalo made it back to Bolduc Farm.

Robert Bolduc says the buffalo may have been startled by some construction work and found a weak spot in a fence.

Flickr

Governor Chris Sununu has signed a bill that decriminalizes small amounts of marijuana.

Under the new law set to take effect in 60 days, those in possession of up to three-quarters of an ounce would face a civil violation and be subject to a fine of up to $100 for a first offense.

Todd Bookman/NHPR

An unassuming brick building in Concord now carries the name of one of the most tireless promoters of the state’s arts and cultural assets.

On Tuesday afternoon, friends, relatives and lawmakers gathered in the shade of a large tree for a bill signing and dedication ceremony of the Van McLeod Building, the new formal name for the offices of the state’s Department of Cultural Resources on Pillsbury Street. McLeod, who died last summer at the age of 70, served as Commissioner of the Department for 24 years.

Todd Bookman/NHPR

Residents of Webster and nearby communities gathered Tuesday night to learn more about National Grid’s recently proposed energy transmission project.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Secretary of State Bill Gardner is on his way to Washington to participate in the first official meeting of the Trump administration’s Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity, scheduled for Wednesday.

Peter Biello / NHPR

Since the Boston Globe's report on unsanitary and dangerous conditions at the VA Medical Center in Manchester appeared over the weekend, attention has turned in part to the hospital's "four-star" rating.

Four out of five stars is usually a good thing, so how did the Manchester VA earn those stars?

Catholic Charities of NH has received $60,000 in federal funds to help immigrant victims of crimes perpetrated by U.S. citizens and permanent residents.

Cathy Chesley of Catholic Charities said most of the organizations eligible clients are survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence, although victimes of other crimes are also eligible.

Peter Biello

After spending two years as a foster parent, first-term state representative Sean Morrison is concerned about what he says is a lack of rights for foster families in the child protective services system.

The Epping Republican and his wife foster two children.

He is proposing legislation to create what he calls a foster parent bill of rights.

Wikipedia

Authorities say a 12-year-old Colorado girl waterskiing on a New Hampshire lake was struck and killed by a powerboat operated by her father.

The New Hampshire Marine Patrol says Zoe Anderson, of Highlands Ranch, fell while waterskiing Monday on Newfound Lake. The patrol says her father, Sherwood Anderson, drove the towing boat back toward her but became briefly distracted as his hat was blown off his head.

The patrol says he quickly placed the boat in neutral as it passed over the top of Zoe at a slow speed. She suffered serious injuries to her torso.

Flickr

Health officials are warning the public about potential exposure to measles at a New Hampshire beach.

According to state officials, an individual who had measles travelled from out of state to visit Hampton Beach July 9. The individual spent time on the beach and at several outdoor locations.

Health officials say those who are vaccinated should not be concerned. However, they do say beachgoers should monitor for any symptoms.

Courtesy the Hampton Historical Society

Imagine you’re at Hampton Beach, strolling down Ocean Boulevard. To one side you have the long sandy beach and open ocean; to the other, a seemingly endless row of motels, restaurants, arcades, and t-shirt shops.

When the breeze picks up, you can just catch the smell of sunscreen and fried dough. It’s the quintessential Hampton Beach scene. But it turns out that your view of it can depend a lot on which side of the boulevard you’re standing on – the side owned by the state or the side owned by the town.

Eddie Cheuk

In a letter addressed to the school community, St. Paul’s Rector Mike Hirschfeld said the school recently commissioned its own independent investigation to find out if a newly surfaced game was part of a sexual competition among students.

Steve and Michelle Gerdes / Flicker CC

Due to record demand, the Public Utilities Commission is putting a state-managed rebate program for renewable energy investments on hold.

According to a letter issued by the PUC on Friday, both the Commercial and Industrial Solar Rebate Program, as well as the Residential Solar and Wind Rebate Program, are closed to new applicants until at least September 1st. The PUC points to high demand, as well as an application wait list valued at $1.5 million.

Flikr Creative Commons / Ken_Lord

A Hampton fisherman wants to take his concerns about federal fishing regulations to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Hampton fisherman David Goethel says the federal government shouldn’t be able to force him to pay for his own at-sea monitors. At-sea monitors are regulators who accompany fishermen on some fishing trips to make sure catch limits are being observed.

Amanda Loder, StateImpact New Hampshire

Laurie Laizure of Manchester likes to think she’s the kind of parent who’s engaged in what’s happening at her kids' schools.

Which is why she was so surprised to learn, when scrolling through Facebook last month, about a sexual assault that took place at Manchester West High School. In 2015, a 14-year-old student — a classmate of Laizure's daughter — was raped by an older student in a secluded hallway during school hours.

NHPR Staff

The reviewer overseeing reforms outlined in a lawsuit settlement over mental health care says New Hampshire has made significant advances toward compliance.

Court-appointed monitor Stephen Day cites "the very positive results" in the number of people being treated in the community rather than in hospital emergency departments that have been made possible by mobile crisis teams in Concord and Manchester. Mobile crisis services have helped more people access crisis services, delivered more crisis services, and led to "substantial growth" in people accessing crisis apartments.

Michael Samuels

A small group of New Hampshire veterans will gather in North Haverhill Tuesday to learn about farm equipment and the agricultural industry in the state. 

St. Paul's School

The New Hampshire Attorney General’s office announced Thursday it’s launching a criminal investigation into St. Paul’s School.

Peter Biello / NHPR

Two top officials at the Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Manchester have been removed pending a review of conditions described in a Boston Globe report. Several doctors at the Manchester VA complained in the report of unsanitary operating rooms and alleged substandard care.

Weekly N.H. News Roundup: July 14, 2017

Jul 14, 2017

New Hampshire's Attorney General opens a criminal investigation into charges of sexual assault at St. Paul's School. Governor Chris Sununu signed a number of bills, including full-day kindergarten funding, a drug interdiction bill, and another tightening the definition of domicile for voting purposes. He also vetoed his first bill, regarding zoning board procedures.  And Grover Norquist, of Americans for Tax Reform, visits the state to talk tax reform and support GOP congressional candidates.


NHPR Staff

Governor Sununu's pick to lead a lead a new state department dedicated to economic development had his day before the Executive Council today.

The Governor likes to describe the goal for this new department, which would oversee business development and travel and tourism, as being a "one stop shop" for folks doing business in New Hampshire.

That sounds simple, but it touches areas as diverse as education, housing, and labor policies, all of which can get complicated, as can the business-speak of Sununu's pick to spearhead development efforts, Taylor Caswell.

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