Coos County

Dixville Capital

More details on the proposed redevelopment of the Balsams Resort in the North Country are available as developers seek a zoning change in the North Country.

The new Balsams resort would start with 4,600 “dwelling units” ranging from hotel rooms to condos.

Its core would be called the Balsams Lake Village and would be anchored around the historic Dix and Hampshire houses, which would be “largely preserved.” The village would include shops and restaurants.

Sean Hurley

With more than 4000 miles of hiking trails, it's not too hard to get away from it all here in New Hampshire. But if you want to get even further away, you could head out on the Cohos Trail, one of the wildest, most remote trails in New England. I recently went for a hike on the Cohos with trail founder, Kim Nilsen.

In the dirt lot at the base of Owl's Head mountain, 68 year old Kim Nilsen pulls a weaved pack basket, made by his daughter, over his shoulders.  

The U.S. Department of Transportation has approved one so-called Tiger grant in New Hampshire, providing $1.4 million to improve 42 miles of rail line between Rochester and Ossipee. But a request for funds for Coos Country failed.

The grants were sought under the federal government’s Transportation Investment Generating Economy Recovery program nicknamed "Tiger."

New Hampshire’s congressional delegation joined the state department of transportation in seeking several grants for the state.

Rockingham Healthiest County In N.H., Coos Struggles

Mar 20, 2013
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Rockingham County is officially the healthiest place in New Hampshire, while Coos County is struggling in terms of public health.  That’s according to a report released by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the University of Wisconsin.

A recount of the votes cast in Coos District 7 hasn’t changed the winner: Republican Leon Rideout defeated Democrat Evalyn Merrick.

Both are from Lancaster.

Merrick requested a recount which was conducted Thursday by the Secretary of State.

Originally Merrick lost by 12 votes.

In the recount, however, that margin increased to 34 votes.

That left Rideout with 3,274 votes compared to 3,240 for Merrick.

John G. McCormick has been elected Coos County Attorney, according to results released by the New Hampshire Secretary of State.

McCormick, of Lancaster, got 9,051 votes compared to 4,722 for Phillip J. Beiner who is from Berlin.

McCormick has been the assistant county attorney for five years, working with County Attorney Robert Mekeel, who did not seek re-election and left office on Wednesday.

McCormick received his law degree from the Dickinson School of Law at Penn State University.

In Coos County Democrat Ann McLane Kuster got a boost from Berlin and Gorham, helping her to defeat incumbent Republican Charlie Bass.

According figures released by the Secretary of State Kuster got 2,413 votes in Berlin, almost 1,000 more than Bass.

In Gorham she got 866 votes compared to 564 for Bass.

Other Coos towns that favored Kuster included Milan, Northumberland, Randolph, Stratford and Stark.

Bass took towns including Colebrook, Columbia, Dalton, Errol, Lancaster and Whitefield.

President Obama and gubernatorial candidate Maggie Hassan were the winners in Coos County on Tuesday.

According to official results now available from the New Hampshire Secretary of State  Obama received 9,095 votes in Coos compared to 6,342 for Mitt Romney.

Towns that voted for Romney included Clarksville; Colebrook; Columbia; Errol; Jefferson; Pittsburg and Stewartstown.

But those victories were offset by areas including Berlin where Romney had 1,248 votes compared to Obama’s 2,863.

Coos: A Summary

Nov 7, 2012

Here’s what happened in Coos County on Tuesday, according to a tally by the Associated Press. Official counts from the Secretary of State are not yet available.

* Jeff Woodburn of Dalton was elected senator, defeating Debi Warner of Littleton. He takes the place of Republican John Gallus who chose not to run.

* In District 1 with all ten precincts counted Republican incumbent Duffy Daugherty of Colebrook lost to  Democrat Larry Enman of Errol by 20 votes.

Enman had 1,158 votes.

Chris Jensen for NHPR

In the towns of Dalton and Whitefield in Coos County voting was heavy Tuesday morning.

Dalton Town Moderator Ann Craxton seemed quite pleased with the way things were going.

“The turnout for us has been very heavy. We have 540 registered voters. We have more than 50 that voting absentee and here by 10 o’clock in the morning we’ve already had 80 come through the polls.

Beyond that Craxton says the voters are an eager and happy bunch.

In Coos District 5 incumbent Republican John Tholl of Whitefield is running against Democrat Marcia Hammon, also of Whitefield.

Here is how Tholl voted on some of the issues during the past year.

Voter ID: Voted for requiring voter identification. NHPR story.

During last week’s primary Coos County Commissioner Bing Judd lost his bid for re-election by five votes.

Today (Monday) there was a recount in Concord.

NHPR’s Chris Jensen has the results.

Bing Judd, who has been a Coos County Commissioner since 1997, has lost that position.

In a recount today in Concord Judd lost by seven votes.

599 to 592.

Originally Judd lost by five votes, prompting him to ask for the recount.

Judd is from Pittsburg – where he lost to Samson.

Samson from Stewartstown.

Bing Judd, who has been a Coos County Commissioner since 1997, has lost his seat by five votes.

Judd had 592 votes compared to 597 for challenger Rick Samson, deputy secretary of state David Scanlon told NHPR Thursday afternoon.

Late Thursday Judd said he will be driving to Concord Friday to file a request for a recount.

"Five votes in 1,200, there could be a mistake," he said.  "It could go either way."

That recount is expected to occur Monday.

Judd had not faced a challenge for more than a decade.

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Jackie Cilley – a Berlin native – took Coos County with 1,226 votes, according to figures just released by the New Hampshire Secretary of State.

That compared to 1,087 for Maggie Hassan and 187 for Bill Kennedy.

But, of course, Hassan won statewide with 45,143 compared to Cilley’s 33,073. Kennedy had 6,001.

Some of the totals from Coos are below. The full list can be found here.

Chris Jensen for NHPR

Ovid Lamontagne dominated the Republican primary in Coos County Tuesday.

Lamontagne routinely pulled at least 50 percent – and in some cases 80 percent or more - of the vote in town after town.

In Berlin Lamontagne took 81 percent of the vote; 72 percent in Lancaster; 57 percent in Colebrook and 70 percent in Whitefield.

Meanwhile, Republican incumbents Larry Rappaport and Duffy Daugherty of Colebrook have apparently held off challenger Charles Kurtz of Errol.

Chris Jensen for NHPR

An unusual and important race in the North County will be decided on Tuesday.

It’s the political future of Bing Judd, a longtime Coos County Commissioner and one of the best-known figures in the region.

NHPR’s Chris Jensen reports.

For the first time in more than a decade Coos County Commissioner Burnham “Bing” Judd is being challenged for the commissioner’s spot he’s held since being appointed by a court in 1997.

There’s a new effort underway to attract businesses to the North Country with the prospect of cheaper energy.

NHPR’s Chris Jensen has the story.

An economic development group has a new way to encourage businesses to come to Coos.

It is taking advantage of a natural gas pipeline from Canada that crosses the county, says Jon Freeman, the president of the Northern Community Investment Corporation.

“Typically the natural gas will cost about one quarter of the price of oil.”

The Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests says it has reached deals with several land owners in Coos it believes will block the Northern Pass hydro-electric project.

But Northern Pass says it plans to keep working on the $1.1 billion dollar project.

NHPR’s Chris Jensen reports.

The Forest Society says it has tentative conservation easements with land owners in Coos that would keep the controversial hydro-electric project from finding a crucial route south from Canada.

Eighty-one percent of Coos County’s 2009 high school graduates say they don’t see job opportunities for themselves at home. And, more than 60 percent say they see those opportunities getting scarcer. That's according to the most recent survey results from the Carsey Institute's 10-year Coos Youth Study, published this week.

Officials for the Northern Pass hydro-electric project say they plan to have their new route through Northern New Hampshire finished this fall.

NHPR’s Chris Jensen reports.

Northern Pass is making progress buying land for its new route through northern Coos and still hopes to file that plan with the U.S. Department of Energy by the end of the year, says Leon Olivier, an official with Northeast Utilities, which is behind the Northern Pass project.

Chris Jensen for NHPR

A new, two-year study of Coos County finds that the community is strong on cooperation, but struggles with the best strategy to create jobs.

NHPR’s Chris Jensen has more on the study done by the Carsey Institute

In 2009 UNH sociologist Michele Dillon began composing a picture of Coos County.

It would be a mosaic based in large part on about four dozen interviews with community leaders.

Chris Jensen for nhpr

For three years Coos County has been at the bottom of a list of the healthiest counties in the state.

But now groups from the North Country have decided to do something about it.

NHPR’s Chris Jensen reports.

 

Each spring for the last three years health care workers in the North Country have taken it on the nose.

Spring is when the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute releases its ranking of the health of individual counties nationwide.

Here’s how this year’s election in the North Country – including the September 11th primary - is shaping up, according to filings with the New Hampshire Secretary of State.

* Longtime Coos County Commissioner Bing Judd is being challenged by Rick Samson - also a Republican – who is deeply involved in the opposition to the Northern Pass hydro-electric project. There is no Democratic opponent.

 * Executive Councilor Ray Burton of Bath faces another Republican, Gerard L. Thibodeau of Rumney in the primary.  Democrat Beth Funicella of Jackson has also filed.

 

The North Country Health Consortium in Littleton has scheduled a June summit to tackle some of the health problems in Coos County noted in a recent study.

The University of Wisconsin’s Population Health Institute study released last week evaluated the health of individual counties nationwide.

The study has been done for the last three years. Each time Coos was ranked last in the state.

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/mrd00dman/2358726807/">MrdOOdman</a> / Flickr

A new nationwide study released today/Tuesday ranks Coos County as the least healthy county in the state. NHPR’s Chris Jensen reports.

Chris Jensen for NHPR

 

There’s a public perception that Coos County’s economic challenges mean a significant population loss over the last decade. But a new study shows that’s not quite right. NHPR’s Chris Jensen reports.

Here’s a surprise for Coos County, courtesy of The Carsey Institute at the University of New Hampshire.

It has just finished  a demographic study of the Northern Forest.

Coos County residents receive far more help in federal funds than the national average, according StateImpact NH, a project between NHPR and NPR.

StateImpact’s Amanda Loder examined a recent story in The New York Times that investigated how much help various counties nationwide get from the federal government.

A newspaper in Duluth, Minn. is reporting that Wisconsin officials have offered Kestrel Aircraft land for an assembly plant, a move that could greatly reduce the chances Kestrel would make parts in Berlin.

But in a telephone interview Thursday afternoon Kate Doughtery, a spokeswoman for Kestrel, told NHPR that no decision has been made on the plant's location.

Last year it looked like Kestrel, a new start-up company, would build the aircraft in Maine.

The Union Leader says Coos County Administrator Suzanne Collins has the 35thhighest pension benefit in the state and her $93,281 represents “the highest benefit for a state, county or local public employee who is not an educator. “

For the full article and list go here: http://www.unionleader.com/article/20111109/NEWS06/711099991

 

  

A new federal grant is going to be helping small businesses in the North Country. NHPR’s Chris Jensen reports.

About $400,000 is now available in grants under a federal program aimed at helping  small businesses in Grafton, Coos and Carroll Counties.

Molly White is with the Northern Community Investment Corporation in Lancaster. It is administering the funds.

“Typically I find that most business owners know their type of business or the industry they are in very well but they have trouble with the other types of support services such as marketing or web design.”