News

   A new 10-bed mental health crisis unit is open at New Hampshire Hospital after almost a year of delays.

The unit opened Tuesday in Concord and will admit people over age 18 for stays of three days or less. One goal is to reduce pressure on emergency rooms that are often left caring for patients when beds aren't available at the New Hampshire Hospital, the only state-run psychiatric hospital. On Tuesday, 23 people were on the hospital's waiting list.

Jim Legans via Flickr CC

 

State data shows that the number of road deaths in New Hampshire fell last year amid the passage of a law in July 2015 barring drivers from having a mobile device in their hand.

The Telegraph of Nashua reports state Department of Safety data shows distracted driving deaths fell to sixth place in 2015 after state police say it ranked as the second- or third-leading cause of road deaths for nearly two decades.

Six of the 103 fatal collisions last year were due to distracted driving. That's 6 percent.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

 

New Hampshire Republican U.S. Sen. Kelly Ayotte says the FBI's recommendation that Hillary Clinton not be prosecuted for her use of a private email server "suggests that she gets to play by a different set of rules than everyone else."

Ayotte commented Tuesday after agency Director James Comey said announced the decision, but called Clinton's actions as former secretary of state "extremely careless" and faulted her agency for a lackadaisical approach to handling classified material.

When the owner of Coed Sportswear in Newfields introduced Chris Sununu during a tour of the business a few weeks back, he included a line Sununu’s probably used to hearing by now. 

“He comes from a political family that has a long history of, from my perspective, making the right decisions for our country,” Mark Lane told his staff at the sportswear company, listing off one of several reasons he wanted Sununu to speak to them.

Kandy Jaxx / Flickr

These days, the story of New Hampshire’s economy is kind of a “good news, bad news” tale. The good news: Unemployment is low, at least on paper, and wages seem to be rising, if slowly. The bad news: Employers are struggling to fill positions, and lots of prospective employees say they can’t find the kind of stable, full-time work they’d like to have.

Gustavo Belemmi / Morguefile

If a video designed to recruit people into extremist groups pops up online, it stands to reason that you could just flag it to have it removed and the problem is solved. But that’s not so easy. These videos are easily replicated, so one video could suddenly appear on a variety of websites. It’s time-consuming to track down and try to remove each one. One professor at Dartmouth College has developed software that would help find all those copies.

Prescription Drug Treatment Info / Flickr/CC

Starting this month, the state’s more than 140,000 Medicaid recipients are eligible for substance abuse disorder benefits.

The expansion went into effect Friday.

The benefit was already available to the 49,000 people who enrolled as part of the state’s Medicaid expansion program launched two years ago.

Lawmakers reauthorized the program earlier this year.

 

Biologists still don't know what killed a young humpback whale that washed ashore in New Hampshire.

The 45-foot-long whale, named Snow Plow, was discovered June 26 by fishermen who first spotted its corpse floating 20 miles off the shore.

Snow Plow was one of hundreds of whales that scientists had been tracking for years. She's part of several pods that return to the Gulf of Maine to feed every summer.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Among the Democrats running for governor this year is Executive Councilor Colin Van Ostern. He's a candidate who's no stranger to running political campaigns and is now seeking statewide office for the first time.

elmenda / MorgueFile

Champny’s Fireworks in Bow is a family-owned business that has pyrotechnics of every shape and size.

Deborah Colby, the owner of Champny’s Fireworks in Bow, stands in front of a TV display of fireworks, giving her customers a preview of what they buy. Lissa and Jessica Dubois of Hopkinton huddle close to the screen, transfixed.

"These are really cool," they say. 

How many fireworks do they want to buy?

"Like 20," Lissa says.

"More than that!" Jessica says.

Ted Siefer

For the growing immigrant communities in southern New Hampshire, the language barrier poses many challenges, from schools to public transit. The city of Nashua has come up with a novel way to help city bus drivers communicate with passengers with limited English abilities. 

 

This month the Coos Planning Board is expected to continue reviewing developer Les Otten’s plan to greatly expand the ski area. And, that's likely to include how close skiers can get to the wind turbines on some of those mountains.

The issue arises because Otten wants to give skiers the maximum vertical drop by getting them to the top of the mountains.

But in 2009 when the Site Evaluation Committee was considering approving that wind farm it worried about people getting too close to the 400-foot high machines.

Photo by Marsmet523, courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons

  New Hampshire is marking Independence Day with parades, ceremonies and readings of the Declaration of Independence.

Governor Maggie Hassan will take part in a reading of the Declaration at Strawbery Banke in Portsmouth this afternoon.

In Dover, actors from the Garrison Players theater group read the Declaration while portraying some of those who pushed for Independence.

  New Hampshire, Maine and Vermont have launched a new system to provide drivers with real-time road and travel information.

The system, called New England Compass, pulls data from dispatchers, sensors, cameras and other sources to alert drivers to adverse road conditions throughout northern New England.

Drivers can visit a new website, NewEngland511.org, for updates.

Denise Markow of the New Hampshire Department of Transportation says drivers can also set up customized alerts for their regular routes.

Happy (Almost) Fourth of July! Before you settle into your holiday weekend, we're here to make sure you have at least a few conversation starters to keep you going between parades, fireworks and the like. If you want to stay in the loop every week, make sure to sign up for NHPR's newsletters: You can do that right here.

New Hampshire US Senator Kelly Ayotte is among the Republicans calling on Attorney General Loretta Lynch to recuse herself from a federal probe into Hillary Clinton's handling of emails as Secretary of State. 

Courtesy Ias-initially via Flickr/Creative Commons

At Something Wild we like to talk about some of the interesting wildlife or natural occurrences you can find in New Hampshire. We hope you learn a little something wild along the way; sometimes that’s birds and bees, sometimes that’s flowers and trees, but today we want to talk about that thing called love. 

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Donald Trump was back in New Hampshire Thursday. The presumptive Republican presidential nominee held a private, town hall style event at a shuttered light bulb plant in Manchester.

It was Trump’s second trip here in just the last few weeks, and behind the scenes, there’s been a shakeup in his New Hampshire campaign since his last visit.

Michael Brindley/NHPR

“Keep it simple. Get it done.” That's the slogan Republican Ted Gatsas is using in his campaign for governor. It’s a theme the Manchester Mayor has turned to time and time again throughout his political career. 

Jason Moon for NHPR

Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump called for the U.S. to scale back its trade deals with foreign nations during an invitation-only speech in Manchester yesterday. Trump used a now shuttered light-bulb factory as the backdrop.

As Donald Trump events go, it was a modest affair. Only about 150 supporters sat on folding chairs in a parking lot nestled around back of the former Osram Sylvania plant in Manchester. But as Trump made clear again and again, the setting was the point.

Epa.gov

The Coakley Landfill, a federal Superfund site located in North Hampton and Greenland, N.H., is the fifth source of perfluorinated chemicals identified in New Hampshire. 

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Governor Maggie Hassan has issued an executive order barring discrimination in state government against transgender individuals.

Faith Meixell / NHPR

Peach lovers are in for a bit of disappointment this summer, with New Hampshire’s crop of the fuzzy fruit almost entirely wiped out. In this week's installment of Foodstuffs, we'll find out what's behind the shortage.

At Carter Hill Orchard in Concord, visitors this time of year typically find acres and acres of apples, peaches, and other tree fruits growing among the rolling hills.

Elizabeth Szelog for NHPR

Biologists have begun investigating what killed an 18-year-old humpback whale that washed ashore in New Hampshire.

New England Aquarium spokesman Tony Lacasse tells The Portsmouth Herald the reason the whale named Snow Plow died remained a mystery as of Wednesday.

A former admissions officer at an elite New Hampshire prep school who went on to become a Teacher of the Year at another school has pleaded not guilty to sexual abuse charges.

Seventy-four-year-old Arthur Peekel was charged with two misdemeanors from his time at Phillips Exeter Academy. He's accused of assaulting Lawrence Jenkens when the then-14-year-old visited the school in 1973.

Courtesy Peterborough Open Space Committee

In 1987, Hiroshi Hayashi moved his restaurant “Latacarta” from Cambridge, Massachusetts to Peterborough, New Hampshire. After just eleven months in his new location, Hayashi had amassed a loyal following among the town’s residents. NHPR reporter Robbie Hoenig met with him to talk about his business and the emphasis he placed on natural food preparation.

Ceyhun (Jay) Isik / https://flic.kr/p/cG7qFL

State officials held a public meeting Wednesday evening in Merrimack to update residents on the steps they’re taking to address groundwater contamination linked to the Saint-Gobain plastics plant.

But many residents were less than satisfied with the answers they got.

This was the latest meeting between officials and residents of Merrimack and surrounding towns impacted by contamination from the chemical PFOA, which has been linked to several health problems, including cancer.

 

The New Hampshire Lottery says it has sold over $300 million in tickets this year, breaking its all-time sales record.

Officials say the amount tops the $280 million raised last year, which was the previous record high.

The increase includes new scratch tickets and a surge in Powerball sales.

Scratch ticket sales, which make up about 70 percent of total New Hampshire Lottery sales, jumped by $8 million, or 4 percent, from last year to this year. Annual scratch ticket sales have risen from $160 million in 2011 to $216 million this year, 35 percent increase.

Getty Images

Donald Trump will be in New Hampshire Thursday, his second trip to the Granite State this month.

The presumptive Republican presidential nominee will be at the former Osram Sylvania building Manchester at 3:30, where he’s expected to deliver a speech focused on trade.

This is the second day of a two-day swing through New England for Trump.

He held a fundraiser in Boston Wednesday, and held a rally in Bangor, Maine.

Allegra Boverman / NHPR

New Hampshire Congresswoman Annie Kuster has introduced a bill that would put labels on opioids to warn users about the addictive nature of narcotics.

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