News

Pages

Politics
8:08 am
Fri March 20, 2015

Update: Speaker Demands Apology For Abortion Remark During Debate Over Fourth Graders' Bird Bill

Speaker Shawn Jasper
Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Updated at 3:45 PM:

N.H. House speaker Shawn Jasper is demanding an apology from the state rep who made an abortion remark during debate over the bill proposed by fourth graders to designate the Red Tailed Hawk as the state's official raptor. 

Read more
North Country
7:44 am
Fri March 20, 2015

North Country Events

CALENDAR OF EVENTS
The newsletter typically announces events in the next week. The calendar shows you events in the coming months.

Read more
NH News
7:41 am
Fri March 20, 2015

Voters In Bow Reject $5M Bond For New Public Safety Facility

Voters in Bow
Credit bow-nh.com

Voters in Bow have rejected a $5 million bond to build a proposed public safety facility.

The Concord Monitor reports the vote came during the second session of Bow’s town meeting Thursday night.

Of the more than 1,100 residents who voted on the bond, just more than half supported it, falling short of the two-thirds needed to pass.

The combined facility would have housed the police, fire and emergency management departments.

Read more
NH News
7:29 am
Fri March 20, 2015

Nearly 200 Manchester Students Opt Out Of Smarter Balanced Exam

Credit NYC Department of Technology / Flicker CC

Nearly 200 students opted out of taking the Smarter Balanced exam in Manchester this week.

The New Hampshire Union Leader reports the district received 196 refusal requests from parents or guardians during the first week of the new online statewide assessment.

The test is being given to students across the state in grades three through eight, as well as 11th grade.

Read more
NH News
6:55 am
Fri March 20, 2015

Analysis: Few Women Among Concord's Highest Paid Employees

Concord City Hall
Credit meridiannh.com

It’s Sunshine Week, a national initiative to promote freedom of the press and the public’s right to know.

The Concord Monitor has spent the week reporting on its efforts to obtain public records and review how taxpayer dollars are spent.

Read more
NH News
6:29 am
Fri March 20, 2015

Keene City Council Delays Action On Issuing Pumpkin Festival Permit

Credit Selbe B via Flickr/Creative Commons - http://www.flickr.com/photos/stacylynn/5117165696/in/photostream/

Officials in Keene have delayed action on whether to issue a permit to the organizers of the city’s annual pumpkin festival.

The Keene Sentinel reports city councilors voted Thursday night to send the issue back to the council’s planning, licenses and development committee for reconsideration.

That committee voted unanimously last week to reject issuing a permit to Let It Shine, the nonprofit group that organizes the festival.

However, Mayor Kendall Lane urged councilors to give the decision its due process and allow for more discussion on the festival’s future.

Read more
Politics
6:18 am
Fri March 20, 2015

House Asks N.H. Supreme Court To Weigh In On Proposed Voting Rules For Out-Of-State Students

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

The New Hampshire House of Representatives is asking the state Supreme Court to weigh in on a bill requiring people registering to vote — including out-of-state students or military personnel — to also register their cars and obtain drivers' licenses in New Hampshire.

The request for an advisory opinion was made in writing Wednesday and made public by the court Thursday.

A New Hampshire Civil Liberties Union lawyer says including the drivers' license requirement in establishing a voter's eligibility amounts to a poll tax that forces people to pay the state to vote.

Something Wild
12:00 am
Fri March 20, 2015

Something Wild: Vernal Equinox

Spring Equinox
Credit NASA GOES

March 20th marks the Vernal Equinox.  It's one of two points on our calendar when day and night are of equal length. More or less. It may be more of a convenient handle we put on an arbitrary point on our annual revolution around the sun, but it is significant in that it marks the point in the year where we start seeing more daylight than darkness.  So with the days growing longer, this is a great time to talk about photoperiod.

Read more
Politics
11:40 pm
Thu March 19, 2015

Trump Tells N.H. Republicans Interest In Presidential Bid No Joke

Businessman Donald Trump stops in New Hampshire Thursday night as he considers to run for president in 2016.
Credit Paige Sutherland/NHPR

Celebrity businessman Donald Trump joined fellow Republicans at a house party in Amherst, New Hampshire Thursday night while he continues to toy with the idea of running for president in 2016.

But this isn’t the first time Trump has flirted with the idea of running for President.

Four years ago he visited New Hampshire, but this time he took a step forward by forming an exploratory committee and hiring  staff in early voting states.

At the Amherst home of state representative Stephen Stepanek, Trump told Republicans that he would "make America rich again."

Read more
Health
5:23 pm
Thu March 19, 2015

State Offers Blood Test For 100 People Exposed To Contaminant At Pease Tradeport

The Department of Health and Human Services is offering a free blood test to people who may have drunk contaminated water at the Pease Tradeport in Portsmouth last year.

Perfluorochemicals, or PFCs, are used in products that resist heat – like Teflon, and the foam once used for fighting fires at Pease Airforce Base. PFCs were found in a well at the Pease Tradeport in May 2014.

Read more
NH News
4:27 pm
Thu March 19, 2015

N.H. Senate Passes, Then Tables, Business Tax Cuts

Sen. Jeb Bradley
Credit Allegra Boverman for NHPR

The business profits tax (BPT) stands at 8.5%; the business enterprise tax (BET) at .75%.

Under these bills, those would drop every year  until 2019, when the BPT would be 7.9% and the BET  .675%.

Senate majority leader Jeb Bradley told colleagues the cuts are an overdue recognition that N.H. isn’t as business friendly as it needs to be.

“To ignore the fact that we have an uncompetitive corporate tax rate is nothing worse than the most myopic short sightedness that we could have.”

Democrats, like David Watters, countered that cuts are ill-conceived.

Read more
NH News
3:33 pm
Thu March 19, 2015

From Farm To...Desk? Plymouth Farmers Market Delivers Local Food To People At Work

Regina Rinaldo in the Local Foods Plymouth office.
Sean Hurley

Local Foods Plymouth has been connecting area residents with local farmers and bakers via their online farmer's market since 2006. Members can order meat, vegetables, bread, hot sauce, even hand-made soaps online and collect their goods at a local pick-up spot.  Last year, they made it even easier with a delivery service they call "Farm to Desk" as NHPR's Sean Hurley reports.

Read more
Politics
1:09 pm
Thu March 19, 2015

N.H. House Finance Chair Calls On Republicans To Back Gas Tax

House Finance Committee voted 15-11 on Thursday in favor of a measure that would cut $88 million in DOT funding from the Governor's proposed budget.
Credit Paige Sutherland/NHPR

A bill that would cut more than $88 million from the Governor Maggie Hassan’s proposed transportation funding will move to the House floor.

The House Finance Committee voted 15 -11 along party lines Thursday in favor of a measure, critics say would send a blow to New Hampshire’s infrastructure.

Deputy Commissioner of the DOT Patrick McKenna said these cuts would lead to more than 600 layoffs, the closure of nearly 200 bridges and devastate the state’s maintenance and plowing operations.

Read more
Politics
7:06 am
Thu March 19, 2015

Trump Visits New Hampshire As He Eyes Presidential Bid — Again

Donald Trump
Credit Wikipedia

 

Real estate mogul and reality TV star Donald Trump is heading to New Hampshire as he again considers a presidential run.

Trump will attend a reception Thursday at the Amherst home of Republican state Rep. Steve Stepanek.

The visit comes one day after Trump announced plans to form a presidential exploratory committee, allowing him to raise money and hire staff as he weighs a White House bid. Trump says he's already hired political aides in the key early voting states of Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina.

Read more
Education
6:49 am
Thu March 19, 2015

Despite Testing Mix-Up, State Says Smarter Balanced Rollout Going Well

Many schools across New Hampshire this week are administering the new Smarter Balanced exam for the first time.

This is the first week of a 12-week testing window for schools to give the assessment.

The rollout hasn’t gone completely as planned, after some students were accidentally given a practice version of the exam.

Officials at three Manchester schools said some students will have to retake the test.

Heather Gage is director of educational improvement for the state Department of Education.

Read more
Politics
6:02 pm
Wed March 18, 2015

N.H. House Finance Chairman Says Transportation Cuts Will Pass Committee

The N.H. House Finance Committee debates cutting more than $88 million in Department of Transportation funding from the Governor's proposed budget.
Credit Paige Sutherland/NHPR

The Department of Transportation is warning New Hampshire House budget writers from voting to slash more than $88 million in funding from the Governor’s proposed budget.

The House Finance Committee is expected to vote on the bill Thursday morning.

Deputy Commissioner of the department Patrick McKenna said he is appalled by the cuts,  adding that it would result in the loss of more than 600 jobs, the closure of hundreds of bridges and would drastically affect the state's infrastructure by limiting road maintenance and plowing. 

Read more
North Country
3:12 pm
Wed March 18, 2015

After Six Generations, Making Sure The Family Farm Stays A Farm Forever

The Johnson farm covers 311 acres and includes two islands. Photo courtesy of The Ammonoosuc Conservation Trust.

Alarmed that farmland in New Hampshire is being lost to development, an unconventional type of conservation easement that encourages farming is literally gaining ground...

Tuesday Richard Johnson became the latest example.

Six generations of Johnson’s family have farmed 311 acres in Monroe since 1803.

At age 63, he’s the last of his family and it was an emotional moment when the burly, shy farmer signed an agreement that would ensure the acreage would remain farmland forever.

Read more
NH News
1:51 pm
Wed March 18, 2015

Timeline: Women's Prison Delay Part Of Larger Story About N.H. DOC's Challenges

A new New Hampshire State Prison for Women, originally slated to open in Concord in the fall of 2016, is running $12 million over budget and will be delayed by one year.

NHPR's newsroom has been covering issues surrounding the current women's prison in Goffstown, as well as the resources and funding issues that have faced New Hampshire's Department of Corrections in recent years. Reporter Emily Corwin was the recipient of a 2014 Gracie Award for her journalism on this issue.

Read more
NH News
7:16 am
Wed March 18, 2015

As Decision On Pumpkin Festival Permit Nears, Concerns About Safety Linger

Keene Pumpkin Festival
Credit Courtesy

A decision on whether to put an end to the city of Keene’s annual Pumpkin Festival could be made this week.

The city council is scheduled to decide Thursday whether to issue a permit to the nonprofit group Let It Shine, which organizes the event.

The festival was marred last by riots that occurred just outside the event’s footprint downtown. Dozens of arrests were made.

Ella Nilsen is a reporter for the Keene Sentinel. She joined NHPR’s Morning Edition producer Michael Brindley to talk about her reporting on the issue.

Read more
NH News
6:25 am
Wed March 18, 2015

Campaign Created To Ready N.H. Drivers For Hand-Held Devices Ban

Credit Jim Legans via Flickr CC

 

A law banning the use of all hand-held electronic devices is going into effect in New Hampshire on July 1, and transportation officials are unveiling an education campaign about the change.

The campaign being discussed Wednesday includes a new public service announcement, website and materials available for residents to familiarize themselves with the new law.

Read more
Politics
6:19 am
Wed March 18, 2015

House Budget Writers To Vote On Transportation Cuts

Credit NHPR Staff

 

House budget writers are preparing to vote on whether to cut millions of dollars from the Department of Transportation's budget, forcing layoffs and a decline in road maintenance.

Read more
Politics
6:14 pm
Tue March 17, 2015

N.H. House Budget Writers Slash H.H.S. Funding

Credit Allegra Boverman / NHPR

The Department of Health and Human Services is warning House budget writers against cutting $160 million from the Governor’s proposed budget.

So far the House Finance Committee is proposing roughly $117 million less from the H.H.S budget. Meanwhile a proposal to cut more than $28 million from the state’s mental health services remains on the table.

Deputy Commissioner of the department Marilee Nihan tells the committee these cuts are “aggressive.”

Read more
NH News
5:37 pm
Tue March 17, 2015

Lakeview Special Ed School On Tight Deadline To Comply With State Regulations

Lakeview Neurorehabilitation Center in Effingham / October 2014
Conway Daily Sun/Jamie Gemmiti

Late last month, the New Hampshire Department of Education made an unannounced visit to Lakeview School in Effingham. DOE had placed the special education school on provisional approval last November, and February 26 marked the third – though the only unannounced – visit to Lakeview since the fall.

Read more
NH News
5:30 pm
Tue March 17, 2015

Citing Lack Of Support, Broderick Steps Down From UNH Law Post

John Broderick at the Rudman Center in October 2014.
Credit Allegra Boverman / NHPR

The former New Hampshire state supreme court Chief Justice is stepping down from the UNH School of Law Warren B. Rudman Center.

John Broderick , who was Dean of the UNH Law School before he left that post to lead the Rudman Center last year, told NHPR that he and university administrators differed over the Rudman Center's future.

"I love the Rudman Center and what it stood for and its potential, and I can assure you I would never have left a job I love that much and a center that I helped found if I was getting support from the university," Broderick said. 

Read more
Granite Geek
5:27 pm
Tue March 17, 2015

Granite Geek: The Software That Tries To Improve Our Road Designs

Life is a highway, and I want to use GIS-based software to design it all night long...
Credit Stanley Zimny via Flickr/CC - http://ow.ly/KsGVQ

The idea of building a road is pretty straightforward – you build a path and let vehicles go on the path.

The reality is, of course, is way more complicated. How many lanes does the road need, and in which directions? Which signs are necessary – and which are distracting? Does the road make it too hard for vehicles to get through – or can it actually be too easy?

Read more
NH News
4:14 pm
Tue March 17, 2015

N.H. Unemployment Falls Below 4 Percent In February

Credit NH Employment Security

Unemployment in New Hamsphire fell to below 4 percent last month. According to New Hampshire Employment security, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for February was 3.9 percent.

This brings the number of New Hampshire residents who have a job to 714,840, while only 29,270 are unemployed.

The unemployment rate has been declining steadily since 2010, when it peaked at 6.7 percent.

In a statement governor Maggie Hassan praised the news, calling the announcement “another encouraging sign that our economy continues to strengthen.”

Read more
Education
4:09 pm
Tue March 17, 2015

At Least Three N.H. Schools Gave Students Wrong Version Of 'Smarter Balanced' Test

Central High School in Manchester
Via Central High School Community on Facebook

Students attending at least three New Hampshire Schools took the wrong version of the new Smarter Balanced standardized test, due to a labeling error in the vendor’s software.

On Monday, students at three Manchester schools – Central High School, Beech Street School, and McDonough Elementary School – gave a practice test instead of the real thing. The tests administered were for the proper grade level.

Read more
Environment
3:59 pm
Tue March 17, 2015

$1.3 Million In Grants Awarded To Connecticut River Habitat, Conservation Projects

Credit Paul Cooper via Flickr CC

A total of $1.3 million in grants is going to 13 Connecticut River projects in New Hampshire and Vermont to improve water quality, restore habitat and conserve space.

The New Hampshire Charitable Foundation grants were announced Tuesday.

A fund dedicated to the restoration and protection of the river, its wetlands and shorelands is expected to provide about $21 million for the projects over 20 years.

Read more
NH News
3:36 pm
Tue March 17, 2015

New State Prison For Women Delayed, Projected $12M Over Budget

The new women's prison will be located behind the State Prison for Men in Concord.
Credit Emily Corwin / NHPR

A new state prison for women, originally slated to open in the fall of 2016, is running $12 million over budget and will be delayed by one year.

The building was supposed to cost $38 million and take two years to build. Contractors broke ground in August.

Now, Jeff Lyons with the Department of Corrections says, “the project is costing more than it was originally anticipated to cost, so we now have to look at our options.” 

Read more
NH News
8:01 am
Tue March 17, 2015

New Castle Voters To Meet To Reconsider $1M Bond For School Renovations

Maude H. Trefethen Elementary School
Credit ryereflections.org

Voters in New Castle will meet Tuesday night to reconsider last week’s vote to defeat a $1 million bond for upgrades and renovations to the town’s elementary school.

Seacoast Online reports the reconsideration meeting will be held at the New Castle Recreation Center at 7.

At last week’s school district, voters defeated the bond question, which needed a two-thirds majority.

Read more

Pages