Casey McDermott

State of Democracy/Health Reporter

Credit John W. Hession

Casey McDermott is a reporter covering politics, policy and healthcare.

Prior to joining NHPR, Casey worked at The Concord Monitor and held internships at ProPublica, the Student Press Law Center and the Chronicle of Higher Education. 

She studied journalism and sociology at Penn State but spent most of her days (and nights) in the newsroom of the independent student newspaper, The Daily Collegian. The Collegian was recognized nationally for its work during Casey's time as its managing editor and editor-in-chief.

KOMUNews | Flickr Creative Commons / https://flic.kr/p/aDWgGW

Anthem is planning to get tougher about covering ER visits for ailments that could be treated outside of an emergency room.

Cheryl Senter / NHPR

The executive council unanimously voted this week to promote Deputy Corrections Commissioner Helen Hanks as the new head of the department.

Tracy Lee Carroll, NHPR

The Trump administration’s election commission has gone largely silent since its September meeting in Manchester. But one of its members, Maine Secretary of State Matt Dunlap, says even he is having trouble finding out basic information about the commission’s work — and he’s now filing a lawsuit seeking more transparency.

Allison Quantz for NHPR

A committee of lawmakers, health and insurance officials studying the future of New Hampshire’s Medicaid expansion voted unanimously on Wednesday to recommend moving the program toward a managed care model in 2019 and beyond.

Casey McDermott, NHPR

The Executive Council approved contracts Wednesday with 10 separate reproductive health providers and community health centers across the state.

AP Photo /Mark Duncan

Rochester appears to be the community most divided over whether to allow Keno within city limits – the game passed there by a mere one vote, according to results from the local clerk’s office as of late Tuesday night.

Otherwise, voters across New Hampshire were split on the issue of whether to allow Keno in their communities. Seven of the 10 cities where it was on the ballot voted in favor of permitting the game.

Map: What NH Towns Will Have KENO?

If you’re looking for the latest information on how to vote in the local elections happening across New Hampshire today, you’d probably turn to the state elections website for the most reliable information.

But as voters across New Hampshire headed to the polls Tuesday, the state’s website included several broken links and blank pages where details on voter registration were supposed to be.

Allegra Boverman / for NHPR

9:15 p.m. -- Democrat Joyce Craig has been elected mayor of Manchester, the first woman to ever win that office.

Craig defeated 4-term incumbent mayor Ted Gatsas by roughly 2,000 votes to claim the top spot in New Hampshire’s largest city.

Logan Shannon / NHPR

As voters head to the polls in municipal elections across the state Tuesday, a lawsuit is still pending against a new voting law known as Senate Bill 3.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Bud Fitch is a familiar face around New Hampshire’s Statehouse and its broader political circles. He’s served as deputy attorney general, as Gov. John Lynch’s so-called "stimulus czar" and as a top staffer for former Sen. Kelly Ayotte.

Since August, Fitch has been working under Secretary of State Bill Gardner in a newly created position as a dedicated attorney focusing on election law.

One of the biggest selling points New Hampshire uses to promote ATV riding is that it’s something the whole family can enjoy. But as the sport grows in popularity, health and safety officials are growing concerned – saying the state’s laws are ignoring the serious danger these machines pose to kids.

Chris Jensen for NHPR

These days in Gorham and lots of other towns throughout the North Country, it’s not unusual to see caravans of ATVs (shorthand for "all-terrain vehicles" and "utility vehicles," which are often larger with multiple seats) all over. They're parked at the local gas station, in line at Dunkin’ Donuts, and zipping down local roads.

This is the result of a years-long effort, by both state and local tourism officials, to make northern New Hampshire a destination for ATV riders. While some see promise in this growing group of tourists, others worry that the region might be losing something else along the way.

torbakhopper on Flickr

New Hampshire’s Medicaid program will no longer ban insurance coverage for sex reassignment surgery.

Until now, New Hampshire's Medicaid program explicitly blocked such coverage. The Department of Health and Human Services asked lawmakers for permission to take out the language, citing anti-discrimination mandates within the Affordable Care Act. 

Casey McDermott / NHPR

The state’s attempt to overhaul its childcare rules has been stalled yet again, after childcare providers across the state mobilized against the proposed changes. 

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

News that the Trump administration plans to stop issuing cost-sharing payments, or CSRs, provoked swift outcry from New Hampshire’s Congressional delegation. These payments to insurers help to offset the cost of coverage for low-income patients. 

Earlier this year, Gov. Chris Sununu repeatedly called on Trump to make sure the payments continue — but he isn't criticizing the president for the decision to take them away.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

A pair of lawsuits challenging the state's new voter registration law, Senate Bill 3, have been consolidated into one case.

The next major step is a structuring conference scheduled for Oct. 30. There, parties involved will sort out what the timeline and discovery process for the rest of the case might look like.

Casey McDermott, NHPR

Increased regulation of so-called “bump stocks” seems to have earned initial buy-in from gun rights and gun control activists alike in the aftermath of the Las Vegas massacre. Authorities say the shooter may have used this kind of device to make his gun function more like an automatic weapon.

Here in New Hampshire, at least one local gun shop owner says he doesn't plan on selling the devices — despite a noticeable uptick in demand in recent days. 

Flickr/ Anne and Tim (Creative Commons)

At least for now, New Hampshire seems to be in a better position than other states to weather a lapse in federal funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program, or CHIP, after Congress failed to reauthorize it by last week’s deadline.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Secretary of State Bill Gardner’s participation on President Trump’s election commission has earned him criticism that he’s undercutting his decades of work as New Hampshire’s top elections official. Gardner, for his part, says he’s taking part in the controversial commission “in [his] personal capacity.”

Still, over the past five months since the commission was formed, state workers — including Gardner's staff assistant and attorneys employed by the New Hampshire Secretary of State — have repeatedly been called upon to carry out work related to the commission, apparently on state time.

Sam Evans-Brown

We’re still months away from the start of the next legislative session. But already, the legislative agenda is starting to take shape. Among the hundreds of bills already in the works for next session is one that aims to give the public a clearer window into the legislative process itself.

NAMI New Hampshire, via Facebook

Just three days ago, New Hampshire set a grim record: 74 adults and kids stuck waiting in ERs across the state because there wasn’t a place for them to get mental health treatment. That’s the highest number since advocates started tracking.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Gov. Chris Sununu is heading to Washington on Monday for an undisclosed event at the White House.

The governor’s staff included the visit in his public schedule for the week (with "Attends Event at The White" penciled in at 11 a.m. on Monday), but would not elaborate on the nature of the event when asked for more information. They said the White House would be releasing more details ahead of time, over the weekend.

"The White House will announce the details of the upcoming event this weekend," the governor's office said.

An analyst hired by the state to study trends in its insurance markets told lawmakers on Wednesday that people who receive subsidies to help pay for coverage on the individual market are likely to pay about the same — maybe even less — for coverage next year, on average. But people who don’t receive subsidies could see an average increase of 52 percent.

The scene: the Executive council chambers. The time: 6 p.m. on a Wednesday. The crowd? A mysterious, oft-stereotyped (and sometimes maligned) species, seen only rarely in the halls of the Statehouse: millennials.

They were there as part of a newly formed Millennial Advisory Council, announced last week by Gov. Chris Sununu.

Allegra Boverman / NHPR

The Secretary of State’s office had to backtrack this week on its instructions about how to handle voters flagged through the Interstate Voter Registration Crosscheck System. It initially suggested local checklist supervisors could remove people from local rolls without notifying them first.

Casey McDermott, NHPR

An estimated 12,000 ATV enthusiasts descended on Jericho Mountain State Park in Berlin for the second annual “Camp RZR” festival this weekend, sponsored by off-road vehicle manufacturer Polaris. But trails weren’t the only place where the ATVs’ presence was felt.

Thomas Fearon

The Deputy Commissioner of the Department of Health and Human Services is preparing for a new role: CEO of New Hampshire Hospital. But it won’t be Shibinette’s first time working there.

One of her first jobs out of nursing school was as a charge nurse and relief shift supervisor, working primarily with geriatric patients at Thayer Building, part of the hospital campus.

Gov. Chris Sununu issued an executive order Thursday creating a new forum aimed squarely at younger Granite Staters: an official “Millennial Advisory Council.”

Sununu, who hails from Generation X and also holds the distinction of being the nation’s youngest sitting governor, wasn’t immediately available for comment on the new panel. So this author — who, in the interest of full disclosure, is also a millennial — caught up with a few of her fellow Granite State twentysomethings about what they want to see out of this new group.

Gov. Chris Sununu is continuing to beat the drum for Amazon’s attention — in media interviews, at least — as the online shopping giant scouts out a second location for its headquarters.

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