Chris Jensen

North Country Reporter

Christopher Jensen worked as a reporter for The (Cleveland) Plain Dealer for 25 years, covering topics including desegregation, the 1st Gulf War, international charities’ fraud and the auto industry. He also wrote stories about competing in off-road races including the 1988 TransAmazon, the Baja 1000, the Paris-Moscow-Beijing Raid and Paris-Dakar.

Since 2007 he has lived in Bethlehem, covering the North Country for NHPR in addition to freelancing on automotive topics for The New York Times. He enlisted in the Army in 1968 and spent 15 months as a combat photographer in Vietnam. He graduated from George Washington University with a degree in journalism.

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NH News
7:37 am
Sun December 15, 2013

Snowstorm: Significant Improvements By Noon

The season’s first serious snowstorm is almost over, says says Margaret Curtis, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Gray, Maine.

“By around 10 am to noon depending on your location you should see significant improvements,” she said.

First reports indicate the worst snow was south of the notches.

“So far we’ve seen some reports of up to ten inches in the Lakes Region and as much as nine to ten inches in southwest New Hampshire,” Curtis said.

North Country
2:03 pm
Tue December 10, 2013

Crossover Crash Kills One In Columbia

The crash closed Route 3 in Columbia for several hours.
Credit New Hampshire State Police

There was a fatal collision Tuesday morning on Route 3 in Columbia, according to a news release from the state police.

The accident was reported about 8:40 and involved a Buick LeSabre going northbound and a Toyota Tundra pickup headed southbound, reported Lt. Todd Landry, the commander of Troop F, which covers the North Country.

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North Country
6:00 am
Sun December 8, 2013

Christmas In Bethlehem: An Audio Postcard

Photo by Chris Jensen for NHPR

Saturday night it was the third annual Christmas in Bethlehem celebration in the North Country.

NHPR’s Chris Jensen sent this postcard:

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North Country
6:00 am
Tue December 3, 2013

Evaluating The Site Evaluation Committee

Photo by Chris Jensen for NHPR

Morning Edition Host Rick Ganley: This week the public has a chance to weigh in on the future of the state’s Site Evaluation Committee.  The SEC reviews major utility projects, including proposed wind farms and the Northern Pass project. 

The concerns of opponents of those projects prompted Governor Hassan to sign Senate Bill 99.  It calls for a review of how the SEC works with a report due at the end of December. 

This week’s listening sessions and workshops include one tonight in Manchester.

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North Country
10:08 pm
Sat November 30, 2013

Lost In The Presidentials: Solo Hiker's Saga

UPDATE: By early Sunday afternoon two members of the Fish and Game rescue party were still working their way through the tangled and challenging, Dry River drainage, trying to reach a road, said Lt. Wayne Saunders.

A solo hiker missing in The Presidentials walked out on his own late Saturday afternoon after teams of rescuers and a helicopter spent a rugged day searching for him.

The search began on Saturday morning for Michael Niles 31 of Bradford Massachusetts.

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North Country
4:35 pm
Wed November 27, 2013

Ten To Twenty Years For Operator Of Colebrook Plant That Exploded, Killing Two

A Vermont man found responsible for the 2010 explosion in Colebrook that killed two men and injured a third is going to prison for at least ten years.

Late in October a jury found Craig Sanborn guilty of two counts of manslaughter and Wednesday in Coos Superior Court he was sentenced.

“The court sentenced Mr. Sanborn to five to ten years incarceration on each manslaughter charge to be served consecutively for a total of 10 to 20 years,” said Stephen Murray, the assistant Coos County attorney.

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North Country
11:21 am
Fri November 22, 2013

SEC Public Meetings: Should Citizens Have A Role In Approving Utility Projects?

A series of public meetings begin the first week in December to determine what changes, if any, should be made to how the state’s Site Evaluation Committee works, including whether the public should have a decision-making role in approving new utility projects.

The SEC reviews major utility projects, which will include Northern Pass.

Currently the SEC has fifteen members, all from state agencies.

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North Country
11:28 am
Wed November 20, 2013

Grafton Commissioner Cryans Seeks Burton's Executive Council Seat

Michael Cryans
Credit Photo courtesy of Grafton County Commission

Michael Cryans, a Grafton County Commissioner, plans to run for the Executive Council seat left empty by the death of Ray Burton.

Cryans is a Democrat and Littleton native who for sixteen years has been a county commissioner, serving alongside  Burton, a Republican.

In 1996 Cryans ran against Burton for executive council and lost.

But last year, in the race for county commissioner, Burton endorsed Cryans over a Republican challenger.

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North Country
7:25 am
Wed November 20, 2013

In Troubled Times How Vermont Got $600 Million From Foreign Investors

The owners of the Balsams Grand Resort in Dixville Notch say they are exploring finding foreign investors through the EB-5 program so they can renovate and reopen the hotel. In 2012 most of its furnishings were auctioned off. Photo by Chris Jensen for NHPR

Starting around 2008, as the economy began struggling and banks got skittish about lending, foreign investors began sending hundreds of millions of dollars into Vermont.

They were attracted by a federal EB-5 visa program administered by the state of Vermont.

It allows foreigners willing to invest at least $500,000 to get green cards and live in the United States.

New Hampshire didn’t have anything like it, but the state is warming to the idea.

NHPR’s Chris Jensen reports.

Sound  of construction……

Heavy machinery at work.

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North Country
7:00 am
Mon November 18, 2013

2012: State Traffic Death Ups, Heavy Toll On Baby Boomer Motorcyclists

Traffic deaths increased in 2012 in New Hampshire with alcohol and failing to wear seat belts or helmets again being major factors, according to a new report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

In the study federal officials estimated Americans drove roughly the same number of miles in 2012 as in 2011.

Overall there were 108 traffic fatalities in the state in 2012, an increase of 20 percent over the previous year.

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North Country
6:20 pm
Wed November 13, 2013

Ray Burton Memorial Service Scheduled

Ray Burton’s burial will be private, says BJ Perry, his administrative assistant. But there will be a public memorial service on December 14th.

It will start at 1 p.m. at Plymouth State University in the student union, Perry said.

Burton died less than three weeks after he announced his kidney cancer, said to be in remission, had returned and he would not seek re-election next year.

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North Country
7:57 am
Tue November 12, 2013

Executive Councilor Ray Burton Dies

Ray Burton on November 1 arriving to applause and a standing ovation at a scenic overlook on US 302 being opened and expected to be named in his honor. Photo by Chris Jensen
Credit Chris Jensen, NHPR

Broadcast story

Less than three weeks after Executive Councilor Ray Burton announced his kidney cancer was no longer in remission he died.

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North Country
4:58 pm
Mon November 11, 2013

Looking To Save Money, More Companies, Towns Turn To New Boilers That Heat With Wood

A 1950's era boiler that used heating oil at The White Mountain School was replaced by three self-feeding pellet boilers. Photo by Chris Jensen for NHPR

Around the state more institutions, towns and businesses are turning away from oil in favor of heating with wood, viewing it as a renewable resource that helps the region’s economy, lowers the carbon footprint and apparently saves money.

There’s a good example in the basement of the main building at The White Mountain School in Bethlehem.

The old is a huge, black, gray and rust-fringed H.B. Smith boiler that once feasted on heating oil.

A few feet away are three modern-looking, green and white pellet boilers.

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North Country
12:11 pm
Mon November 11, 2013

New North Country Fire Training Center To Be Named After Burton

A fire in Bethlehem in 2012 badly damaged an apartment building. Photo by Chris Jensen for NHPR

A new fire training facility in the North Country will be named after Executive Councilor Ray Burton, said Deborah A. Pendergast, the director of the state’s division of Fire Standards & Training and Emergency Medical Services.

The center, located in Bethlehem, will allow fire fighters from the North Country to learn fire fighting techniques without the cost and time involved in traveling to Concord.

“It gives the folks up in that area a facility that meets their needs,” she said in a telephone interview.

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North Country
11:12 am
Fri November 8, 2013

And The Winner Of The North Country Chef Competition Is...

Judges came from the White Mountain chapter of the American Culinary Federation. Photo by Chris Jensen for NHPR.

Travis Giles, the culinary instructor at The White Mountains Community College in Berlin, is the winner of the North Country Chef’s Challenge, an effort to see who can best match culinary skills with local ingredients.

Giles was competing against seven other chefs.

The judges were from the White Mountain chapter of the American Culinary Federation.

The event is the idea of the North Country Farmer’s Co-op.

For his entrée Giles began with “a whole red deer” from a farm Milan. 

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