Associated Press

Manchester Police Department

  A former day care worker in Manchester has been charged with assaulting three infants.

Police say they've arrested 32-year-old Chelsea Blais, who worked for the Alpha Bits Learning Center.

On March 7, Manchester police started investigating allegations that a worker at the day care was inappropriately caring for and possibly abusing infants.

An arrest warrant was issued charging Blais with four counts of simple assault. Her bail was set at $5,000 and her arraignment was scheduled for Wednesday.

 

  Five communities in New Hampshire's Seacoast have formed a campaign to provide energy efficiency and clean energy options at bulk discounts for homeowners and businesses.

Participants in "Energize 360" will get a free site visit, a Home Heating Index score, and an analysis of their energy usage specific to their home. The initiative will offer energy audits, weatherization, solar electric systems, and heat pump installations to help qualify for rebates and incentives.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

  New Hampshire would face a higher burden of proof in terminating a parent's rights under a bill before a House committee.

The House Judiciary Committee is holding a public hearing Tuesday that would require a court to find proof beyond a reasonable doubt that parental rights should be terminated. Under current law, the standard is clear and convincing evidence, which is a lower burden of proof.

NHPR Staff

  Twenty-four towns may be receiving additional state education money under a bill before the House.

Lawmakers are voting Thursday on legislation that would provide $9 million in back payments to the districts, who allege they were underpaid by the state in recent budgets. The city of Dover sued the state in 2015 over a law that capped how much fast-growing school districts could receive in state aid.

A state court ruled the cap unconstitutional last year. The bill offers back payments to any towns affected by it.

flickr/Virginia Department of Transportation

  Toll booth workers could be a thing of the past under a bill before the New Hampshire House.

The legislation would allow the state to implement all-electronic tolling at locations in Hooksett, Dover and Rochester. All of the locations currently have E-ZPass lanes along with traditional toll collectors.

The House Transportation Committee is taking testimony Wednesday on the bill. It's already passed the Senate.

If New Hampshire does move to all-electronic tolling, the bill gives users an option to purchase an "anonymous" transponder.

Wikimedia commons

  New Hampshire's dairy farmers will soon be one step closer to getting financial relief.

The House is taking up legislation Thursday to provide $2 million in relief payments to dairy farmers strained by last year's drought.

The bill has already passed the Senate.

The $2 million is less than farmers had initially hoped for and will come months after they first asked for relief. The drought forced many farmers to spend more on feed or reduce the size of their herds. Dairy farmers say they're already facing a financial strain due to low federal milk prices.

Allegra Boverman / NHPR

  U.S. Rep. Carol Shea-Porter is holding a roundtable discussion in Somersworth to highlight her opposition to proposed cuts to the Meals on Wheels program.

The popular service that provides food to the elderly faces a sharp funding cut under President Donald Trump's budget proposal. The exact size of the cut is unknown, but White House budget director Mick Mulvaney said the government "can't spend money on programs just because they sound good."

CREDIT JASON MOON FOR NHPR

  Democrats are introducing legislation aimed at protecting towns from lawsuits that postponed Tuesday's elections due to a winter storm.

The bill says any municipal elections set for Tuesday that were postponed are "legalized, ratified and confirmed." Senate Minority Leader Jeff Woodburn is the bill's sponsor.

Dozens of towns moved their elections due to the snowstorm, despite Republican Gov. Chris Sununu's calls to hold them. He suggested towns could be open to lawsuits if they chose to postpone.

appleswitch via Flickr Creative Commons

 

Authorities in New Hampshire say a juvenile has been charged with murder after a man was found apparently shot to death and a woman was found with a gunshot wound in a Farmington home.

Assistant Attorney General Jason Casey says police responded to a call at the residence just after 12 p.m. Wednesday. They found two adults with gunshot wounds. The man was pronounced dead and the woman was hospitalized with injuries not considered life-threatening.

Casey says the juvenile was arrested and charged with second-degree murder and attempted murder.

New Hampshire Fish and Game officials say two snowmobile operators were treated for serious injuries in separate crashes that happened within minutes of each other in Pittsburg.

Crews responded to a report of a snowmobile crash on Trail 138 in the Carr Ridge area around 12:40 p.m. Sunday and found Thomas Anderson, of Bedford.

Officials say Anderson had been knocked unconscious after failing to turn a corner. His snowmobile left the trail and hit a tree and boulder. He was airlifted to Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon.

FILE

  New Hampshire's Democratic U.S. senators are holdings a news conference to talk about what they call the "devastating" effects of Republicans' proposed health care overhaul.

Sens. Maggie Hassan and Jeanne Shaheen are dubbing the plan "Trumpcare." They'll discuss it at Concord Hospital on Monday morning.

The two are focusing specifically on how the change might affect people with drug addictions. The Affordable Care Act requires insurers to cover addiction treatment programs. And thousands of people on Medicaid expansion in New Hampshire also have access to treatment.

http://www.nh.gov/nhdoc/facilities/concord.html

  Efforts to install scanners into New Hampshire prisons appear to have hit a road block.

The plan to put six machines at a cost of more than $1 million was approved last year by the legislature. But the New Hampshire Department of Corrections says the language in the law is too broad, essentially requiring anyone to be scanned.

 

State police say Keene Police Chief Brian Costa has been found dead at his home and that his "untimely death" is being investigated.

Costa was found on Thursday. State police say an autopsy is scheduled for Friday morning. No further details have been released.

Costa was involved with the Police Assisted Addiction Recovery Initiative, a network of over 140 police departments and 300 treatment centers with a mission to promote treatment rather than to simply arrest and jail people.

Laconia Police Department

  State wildlife officials are seeking a new home for a monkey that was seized from a Laconia home.

Conservation officers working off a tip searched the home around 4:30 p.m. on Monday and seized the primate, which they say was being unlawfully kept as a pet.

Dozens of states have outlawed owning monkeys as pets, including New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Vermont, Maine and Rhode Island.

The animal has been taken to a veterinarian who specializes in primate care.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

 

New Hampshire's Republican House leadership is looking to stall legislation that adds protections for transgender people over fears that it would let men use women's bathrooms.

Speaker Shawn Jasper says he's pushing to table the bill at Wednesday's session, meaning it wouldn't be debated. The bill would ban discrimination in employment, housing and public accommodations based on someone's gender identity. The same protections already exist based on sex, religion, sexual orientation and other factors.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

  Members of the public can weigh in this week on a bill encompassing several election law changes.

Republican Sen. Regina Birdsell is the prime sponsor of legislation that's up for a hearing Tuesday in Concord.

File Photo

  More than 1,500 people who live and work around a redeveloped air base in New Hampshire have learned their blood contains elevated levels of a chemical that has been linked to potential health problems.

PFCs are found in everyday products like no-stick cookware and resistant carpet. Their presence in the water at Pease International Tradeport has been linked to firefighting foam used at the site when it was a military base.

Via Youtube, posted by Earl Flanders

Northern New England is preparing for another round of wind. And it's going to be much colder this time.

The National Weather Service says 30 mph gusts projected for Saturday in Maine and New Hampshire won't be as strong as the 50 mph-plus gusts recorded Thursday.

But the wind will be accompanied by plummeting temperatures.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

 

Gov. Chris Sununu pledged to invest millions of dollars in repairing roads, bridges and schools in his budget address.

But he's light on specifics when it comes to how the estimated $84 million would be doled out, leaving towns, cities and school districts wondering which potholes will be filled, classrooms remodeled and bridges rebuilt.

Chris Jensen for NHPR

  Charges have been dropped against a New Hampshire man accused of killing his 11-year-old stepdaughter by submerging her body in a river.

A court in Lancaster ruled Monday that 52-year-old Wendell Noyes was not competent to stand trial in Celina Cass' death and that his competency can't be restored. According to one evaluator, his mental illness creates a potentially serious likelihood of danger to others.

  A manufacturer based in Milford is planning to expand and add more positions.

Hitchiner Manufacturing supplies metal castings. It's asked the town for approval on two additions, one for 25,000 square feet, and the other 6,000 square feet. The new space will also allow for the production of new products and add space for loading docks, modern electrical and bigger machinery.

Hitchiner is hoping to hire about 35 new workers. The company is currently in discussions with several new customers, with the possibility it could hire up to 200 new employees.

Sam Evans-Brown / NHPR

 

  Eversource is planning to invest $41 million to prune trees along more than 2,700 miles of power lines in New Hampshire to reduce outages.

Bob Allen, manager of Vegetation Management at the utility, says the lack of rain and snow in the region over the past year-plus has taken a toll on trees, and managing them is even more vital than ever.

Eversource will start tree trimming in about 150 New Hampshire communities this year, including 140 miles of work along roadways in Weare, 100 miles in Manchester, and 85 in Laconia.

jim.richmond via Flickr Creative Commons

 

  Nuclear regulators are seeking the public's feedback on a plan to address concrete erosion at Seabrook's power plant.

NextEra Energy wants to extend its license for Seabrook Station by two decades. It must first show the Nuclear Regulatory Commission how it'll address alkali silica reaction, which causes concrete erosion.

The chemical reaction was found in several plant structures in 2010.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

  A bipartisan group of lawmakers wants to expand protections against discrimination for transgender people in New Hampshire.

A bill up for a public hearing Tuesday adds "gender identity" to the state's anti-discrimination statutes. That would protect people who are transgender from discrimination in housing, employment and public accommodations. The state Commission for Human Rights already bars discrimination based on age, sex, race, creed, color, marital and familial state, national origin, sexual orientation and physical or mental disability.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

  New Hampshire's Ray Buckley dropped out of the race for Democratic National Committee chair Saturday, throwing his support behind Minnesota Congressman Keith Ellison.

Buckley's announcement comes a week before the DNC's 447 members gather in Atlanta to choose a new leader. Ellison and former Labor Secretary Tom Perez are widely acknowledged as the front-runners, although several other candidates are also in the running.

NHPR Staff

U.S. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen says she's disappointed that Gov. Chris Sununu hasn't been more forceful in rebutting voter fraud allegations in New Hampshire.

President Donald Trump says he lost New Hampshire in November because thousands of people came by bus to vote against him. Shaheen, a Democrat, says Trump is making that up. On Wednesday, she told reporters that it's disappointing that Sununu — a Republican who was elected in November — hasn't been stronger about pushing back.

NHPR Staff

 The fate of right to work is uncertain in the New Hampshire House, potentially handing Republican Gov. Chris Sununu an early defeat on one of his priorities.

GOP House Speaker Shawn Jasper warns the union-targeting legislation may fail Thursday due to long-standing opposition from a handful of Republicans. But Republican leaders are making an aggressive push in the final hours to flip votes, even suggesting the party may not help Republicans who don't support the bill in the next election.

 

  The family of a New Hampshire man killed by police is suing the officers who shot him.

WMUR-TV reports that the family of 42-year-old Hagen Etsy-Lennon is suing the two Haverhill police officers who fatally shot him in 2015. Attorneys representing the family claim the officers acted recklessly and that Etsy-Lennon did not pose an eminent threat.

Chris Jensen for NHPR

 

  A Florida-based circus operator has agreed to pay $25,000 in fines to resolve criminal charges in New Hampshire following a tent collapse in 2015 that killed two people and injured dozens.

The Caledonian-Record reports a prosecutor says the plea agreement resolves eight charges, including operating without a license, and ensures the state will receive money from a defendant who has limited funds.

Sarasota-based Walker International Events initially faced more than $200,000 in fines.

The agreement will need court approval. A March 8 hearing is scheduled.

  New Hampshire Sen. Jeanne Shaheen is planning to meet with President Donald Trump's nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court.

The Democratic senator is scheduled to meet Wednesday with Judge Neil Gorsuch, a judge on the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals from Denver.

She has indicated that she's unlikely to support Gorsuch, saying he intends to "turn back the clock" on women's reproductive rights and LGBT equality.

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