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A former New Hampshire hospital chaplain alleges he lost his job at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center because his boss didn't like his accent and religious background.

In a lawsuit filed by the Rev. John Nwagbaraocha last week in U.S. District Court in Concord, he alleges the hospital and his direct supervisor, Frank Macht, discriminated against him based on his background, race, religion and age. The Valley News reports he was born in Nigeria and was ordained in 1980 as a Roman Catholic priest.

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Ronny Jackson, the White House doctor President Donald Trump nominated for secretary of Veterans Affairs, has withdrawn as the nominee. He issued a statement calling the allegations against him "false and fabricated."

The White House defended the pick, while the President earlier this week seemed to signal that Jackson could step aside, given the scrutiny.

EPA

Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt faces potentially make-or-break hearings Thursday on Capitol Hill, where he is expected to be peppered with questions about spending and ethics scandals that have triggered bipartisan calls for his ouster.

Pruitt was scheduled to testify about his agency's budget in back-to-back hearings before two House subcommittees.

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New Hampshire lawmakers are considering setting aside $38 million to address an ongoing dispute over payments to hospitals in a move that could put funding for other legislative priorities at risk.

Senate President Chuck Morse, R-Salem, is sponsoring an amendment to an unrelated related bill to put money from the state's general fund into escrow to cover potential payments resulting from a legal battle over how much state and federal governments must pay hospitals for uncompensated care.

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The New Hampshire Supreme Court says a labor relations board was wrong to dismiss a union complaint saying the Community College System of New Hampshire should have compensated an adjunct professor for tutoring.

DOE

 

U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos is heading to New Hampshire for a GOP fundraiser next month.

The outspoken supporter of school choice, school vouchers and charter schools will headline the New Hampshire Republican Party's annual "Spring to Victory" fundraiser May 14 at the Atkinson Country Club.

New Hampshire GOP Chairwoman Jeanie Forrester says DeVos' presence "will serve as a great opportunity to energize and mobilize Granite State Republicans."

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Police say a pursuit that started with a man shooting out of a vehicle at police officers in Massachusetts ended about 20 miles away when the car crashed in Windham, N.H.

 

The chase started in Haverhill, Massachusetts, around 9:30 p.m. Tuesday. Police say one of the men was shooting at an unknown target but then started shooting at them after they gave chase.

The vehicle crashed in Windham, New Hampshire, and the driver was immediately taken into custody. The passenger fled and was found around 2:30 a.m. Wednesday.

Franklin Pierce University is offering 20 full-tuition scholarships to students at a small private college in Massachusetts that is set to close if they enroll as full-time residential students at the New Hampshire school.

Mount Ida College in Newton, Massachusetts, plans to close at the end of the semester. Officials announced that undergraduate students will be offered automatic admission to the University of Massachusetts' Dartmouth campus.

A proposal to strengthen New Hampshire's new office of the child advocate has the support of the division it monitors, though the governor is reserving judgment for now.

Lawmakers created the watchdog agency as part of larger effort to reform the Division of Children, Youth and Families, which has been under scrutiny since two toddlers were killed in 2014 and 2015.

The department of health and human services and DCYF support an amended bill to enhance the office, while a spokesman for Republican Gov. Chris Sununu says he is closely monitoring it.

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A 19th-century mill community with possible Native American ties will be this year's site for the archaeology field school's summer program, run by New Hampshire's Division of Historical Resources.

The Livermore Falls or "the Hollow" was once the site of pulp mills, a tannery and a fish hatchery. It also included homes, a boarding house, stores and a schoolhouse. Recently, there is evidence to suggest that Native Americans may have once occupied the location.

David Trubey, a New Hampshire archaeologist, will direct fieldwork and instruction.

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New Hampshire prison officials have begun providing records to a disabilities rights organizations investigating suspected abuse or neglect in the death of an inmate with mental illness.

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A New Hampshire state agency that helps people with disabilities find and keep jobs for years spent millions more than it took in, prompting an office restructuring and plan to prioritize services for those with the most significant impairments.

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The New Hampshire House on Thursday rejected a measure to protect intoxicated people from drunken-driving charges while they are sobering up in their cars.

The bill passed the Senate last month, but House members voted it down, 209-122. It would have specified that sleeping or resting in a parked car would not be considered driving or attempting to drive under drunken-driving laws.

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A New Hampshire youth sports organization in Durham that's investigating a man's allegations that two baseball coaches talked about a plan to hurt his 11-year-old-daughter—the only girl on her team—to force her to quit says no player was ever in danger.

A coach has been dismissed, Foster's Daily Democrat reported.

 

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The New Hampshire Senate has again passed a bill that would ban therapy that attempts to change the sexual orientation or gender identity of minors.

The bill approved Thursday is identical to one the Senate passed last year, but the House killed in January. The House later passed a slightly different version, and those differences would have to be reconciled in order for the bill to advance to the governor.

U.S. Treasury

The IRS payment website had an outage on tax day, but U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin reassures last-minute filers that an extension would be available.

 

"We expect it to go up shortly, and we'll make sure taxpayers have extensions once the system comes up to make sure they can use it and it in no way impacts people paying their taxes," Mnuchin told reporters after the event, according to Holly Ramer of The Associated Press.

 

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New Hampshire's new child advocate is pressing for changes to the law to strengthen her office's ability to protect the state's most vulnerable residents.

Lawmakers created the office last year as part of larger effort to reform New Hampshire's Division of Children, Youth and Families, which has been under scrutiny since two toddlers under its supervision were killed in 2014 and 2015.

PaddlingFilmFestival.com

 

A tour of the Paddling Film Festival is set to make a stop in Concord at the Red Rivers Theatre.

The annual festival features whitewater, adventure, canoeing and sea kayaking films at over 120 venues around the world, making several appearances in the U.S., Canada and overseas.

 

The movie trailers can be viewed at paddlingfilmfestival.com .

 

The event on Wednesday is hosted by New Hampshire Fish and Game Department, the Northern Forest Canoe Trail and the Contoocook River Canoe Company.

 

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A New Hampshire utility is offering discounted rates to members who charge their electric vehicles during off-peak hours.

New Hampshire Electric Co-op says electric vehicle ownership is on the rise. It says members buying or leasing the vehicles can choose an off-peak charging option to reduce operating costs.

The utility says the goal of the off-peak charging program is to influence members to charge during times when regional electric demand is low and to not strain the New England transmission grid to meet the added demand for power.

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New Hampshire's two Democratic U.S. senators say President Donald Trump's decision to launch airstrikes in Syria is appropriate.

The United States, France and Britain fired military strikes on Saturday that were intended to punish Syrian President Bashar Assad for the alleged use of chemical weapons. U.S. Sens. Jeanne Shaheen and Maggie Hassan released statements in support of the intervention.

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Farmers would be allowed to carry loaded rifles across their fields under a bill passed by the New Hampshire House.

The bill seeks to modify a current law that prohibits the carrying of loaded rifles or shotguns in motor vehicles, snowmobiles or aircraft. The bill passed by the House on Thursday would limit the prohibition to vehicles in motion, and would create an exemption for farmers protecting their crops and livestock.

The police chief in New Hampshire's largest city says two officers have been fired, with one arrested on a misconduct charge.

Manchester Police Chief Nick Willard says the officers were terminated Wednesday.

He said Aaron Brown was employed with the department since July 2007. He had been on paid leave since Feb. 20. Willard said a criminal investigation would be initiated into Brown's actions.

Willard said Steven Cornacchia was arrested last year on a charge of conduct after an accident. His case is pending. He has been with the department since April 2013.

New Hampshire's Executive Council has approved a new leader of the Department of Natural and Cultural Resources and a new state supreme court justice.

Sarah Stewart was confirmed as department commissioner on Wednesday. Republican Gov. Chris Sununu said she has what it takes to drive the department forward into the future by supporting and growing the state's creative economy while protecting forest, lands, and waterways. Stewart works for a small business she started called B-Fresh Consulting.

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A review of sexual harassment and misconduct complaints against lawmakers across the country shows a half dozen New Hampshire House members faced allegations in the last few years.

The Associated Press filed records requests in every state seeking information on complaints made since 2008. The New Hampshire House provided information about eight complaints involving six members, but it only had records dating back to 2015. The Senate said it had no records of such complaints.

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A New Hampshire judge who says he submitted anonymous online judicial evaluations of himself has resigned.

Circuit court Judge Paul Moore submitted a one-sentence resignation Tuesday, effective immediately.

The attorney general's office started investigating Moore's conduct last month.

The state Supreme Court sent the Judicial Conduct Committee a complaint against Moore last fall.

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Former New Hampshire state Senator Molly Kelly, a Democrat, says she's running for governor.

Kelly, of Harrisville, says in a video released at midnight Monday that she worked in the Senate on getting training and education for advanced manufacturing jobs, but that funding has been cut.

She also said she would veto any plan that takes money from public schools to pay for vouchers for private schools.

U.S. Department of Agriculture

Town officials in New Hampshire are preparing for mosquito season.

WMUR-TV reports crews in Rye will start spraying for mosquitoes this week. Officials say they will check standing water for mosquito larvae. These areas include swamps, salt marshes and ditches.

Scientists say mosquitoes and other insects like fleas and ticks weren't affected by the extended period of subzero weather in northern New England.

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Keene State College is making a play for students of a small private school in Massachusetts that is closing at the end of the year.

Officials at Mount Ida College in Newton recently announced that undergraduate students will be offered automatic admission to the University of Massachusetts' Dartmouth campus when Mount Ida closes later this year. Some majors aren't offered at UMass Dartmouth, however, causing confusion among students.

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A proposal for New Hampshire's biggest solar farm doesn't pass muster with zoning laws in Concord.

The Zoning Board of Appeals this week rejected the 54-acre solar farm because it had too many "impervious surfaces" that would cause rain to run off instead of soak into the ground.

Project developer NextEra will consider whether to appeal. Spokesman Bryan Garner acknowledged to the Concord Monitor that the project doesn't "fit neatly or conform to existing zoning codes."

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New Hampshire is seeking more flexibility in how it assesses student performance.

The state has applied to participate in the U.S. Department of Education's Innovative Assessment Demonstration Authority, which would allow different assessment approaches to be used in some school districts rather than having all students complete statewide standardized tests.

New Hampshire already has taken steps toward changing its assessment approach.

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