Nashua

Nashua lawmakers rejected a proposal on Tuesday to buy the former campus of Daniel Webster College off University Drive.

The city's aldermen voted on whether to spend up to $23 million to purchase the property, and use it for city administrative buildings, classrooms and a performing arts center.

Those against the purchase argued the property wasn’t feasible and cost too much. The measure failed 4 to 9. The campus has been for sale since the college shut its doors for financial reasons earlier this year.

Paige Sutherland/NHPR

After hours of debate and public testimony, the Nashua Board of Alderman late last Tuesday rejected a proposal to build a performing arts center in downtown.

AP/Mark Duncan

The electronic bingo game Keno will be on Nashua’s ballot this fall.

The city’s board of aldermen voted unanimously without debate to do so Tuesday. A public hearing is scheduled for Oct. 10.

Manchester, Berlin, Laconia and Rochester will also have Keno on the ballot. So far Portsmouth is the only city yet to reject it.

Earlier this year the Governor legalized Keno, but each city and town will decide whether it’s played in its borders. Revenue generated from the games will go to fund full-day kindergarten programs statewide.

FILE

On Tuesday, Nashua's Board of Aldermen will decide the fate of a $15.5 million proposal to build a performing arts center on Main Street.

The proposal calls for a 500 to 700 seat theater and event center. The project has been in the works for years and has received strong backing from many downtown businesses, the Chamber of Commerce and Nashua Community College.

There’s also a petition going around with more than 500 online signatures. But some aldermen have reservations with the project's cost.

Allegra Boverman

Renaissance-style frescoes are rare in this country. Yet one hangs on a wall in Nashua’s community theater.

At the Court Street building, summer campers dance and run through the hallways. The room is jammed and the kids barely notice the mural with its bright sun shining on Main Street icons, parks and river-ways.

FILE

The campus of the former Daniel Webster College in Nashua will be auctioned off this fall. The former flight school shut down in May for financial reasons and has been vacant since.

Paige Sutherland/NHPR

The Telegraph in Nashua has been in the news lately for a high profile firing and resignation.  Now the paper is under investigation by the state’s labor department.  

NHPR Staff

A woman who attempted to work with the city of Nashua, New Hampshire, as a volunteer grant writer has pleaded guilty to identity fraud.

Police said 43-year-old Dana Michelle Lawrence is scheduled to be sentenced Nov. 28.

According to court documents, in 2006, Lawrence was sentenced in Rhode Island to a year in jail for theft. She didn't follow terms of probation; a warrant was issued for her arrest.

Jimmy Gutierrez for NHPR

For most of the year, residents of New Hampshire can struggle to find good, authentic Latin cuisine. But one summer day every year, St. Aloysius of Gonzaga parish in Nashua’s ‘Tree Street’ neighborhood makes things a little easier.

That’s when they hold their annual fundraiser – the Latino-American festival. The fest features foodie favorites from Mexico, Colombia, and El Salvador. The event celebrated its thirteenth year this past Sunday, and NHPR’s Jimmy Gutierrez went to grab a bite for Foodstuffs. 

AP/Mark Duncan

Just weeks after New Hampshire legalized Keno, the state’s lottery commission has started pitching the electronic bingo game to cities across the state.

Under the new law, money raised by Keno will go towards full-day kindergarten programs statewide. But the game will only be allowed in cities and towns that approve it. 

Paige Sutherland/NHPR

The Telegraph of Nashua found itself in an awkward situation for a newspaper recently. Turmoil in the paper’s management was making the headlines.

The paper’s top editor was fired last week. Another senior editor quit. This comes less than a year after the Telegraph’s managing editor left in protest. Former employees say much of the unrest is due to the paper’s owners, an out-of-state chain that bought The Telegraph four years ago.

AP/Mark Duncan

The Nashua Board of Aldermen will hold a special meeting Tuesday to discuss the electronic bingo game Keno.

Last month Gov. Chris Sununu signed legislation legalizing Keno, but where the game can be played is still up to cities and towns.

Flickr/Bhaskar Dutta

The top editor in the newsroom at the Nashua Telegraph has been fired.

C. Hanchey via Flickr CC.

The city of Nashua will now offer full-day kindergarten at all of its elementary schools. That decision comes as lawmakers in Concord decide whether to support full-day kindergarten state-wide.

Nashua joins the roughly three quarters of school districts around the state that offer full-day kindergarten programs.

Districts who offer full-day programs, do so without support from the state.

But interim superintendent of Nashua Schools Connie Brown says with an overall decline in enrollment, they will be able to implement the program at no cost.

Downtown Portsmouth.
Squirrel Flight via Flickr/Creative Commons: http://www.flickr.com/photos/squirrelflight/1355544138/in/photostream/

Nashua and Portsmouth have joined a growing number of cities around the country committing to the goals of the Paris Climate Agreement.

In the days since President Donald Trump decided to pull the U.S. out of the global climate accord, over 270 mayors across the country have signed on to a plan to stay in.

Now the cities of Portsmouth and Nashua have added their names to the list. Jack Blalock is mayor of Portsmouth.

Emily Corwin for NHPR

Jared Barbosa is an Elementary School guidance counselor who was raised by a professional soccer player. His dad, Manoel “Boom Boom” Barbosa, competed all over the world before settling down in Nashua, N.H.

Jared says professional soccer was his dad’s ticket out of poverty in Brazil. College soccer was his ticket to economic mobility.

He doesn’t think high level sports should exclude low-income kids.

www.harriman.com

  Nashua's Board of Education approved a budget this week that includes full-day kindergarten at all of the city’s schools. Currently, full-day kindergarten is offered at six the city’s twelve elementary schools.

Its expansion has been championed by Jim Donchess, the city’s mayor.

Nashua’s school budget, including funds for full day kindergarten, will now go to the Board of Alderman and then the Board of Education.

About three quarters of towns and cities in New Hampshire offer full day kindergarten.

C. Hanchey via Flickr CC.

There’s a legal battle brewing in the city of Nashua over $1 million in arts funding.

A nonprofit Nashua Center for the Arts filed a petition in court this month to dissolve the organization. It wants to send the money left in its trust to the Currier Museum of Art in Manchester, but officials in Nashua are trying to stop that from happening to keep the money in the city.

Brady Carlson for NHPR / NHPR

Health care reform, public education and infrastructure spending are all hot topics in Congress – and the State House – nowadays. In Nashua, New Hampshire’s second largest city, Mayor Jim Donchess has been pushing his own ideas on these very issues. Sometimes, this puts him at odds with the folks calling the shots in Concord and Washington.

Recently, during a class on city government

Emily Corwin / NHPR

Not even Mayor Jim Donchess expected the city’s new thirteen-week, twenty-six hour class on city government to fill up so fast.  

“Fifty people seemed like comfortable number,” Donchess said. When those seats filled up quickly,  his office closed registration.

The syllabus includes subjects such as what happens to solid waste, and what tax assessors do.

“Well, I wouldn’t call it dry,” Jay Welch said as students streamed into the city’s auditorium. Like many who showed up, Welch is an avid volunteer.

What’s the appeal? Answers ran the gamut.

Emily Corwin for NHPR

As immigration officials ramp up deportation of new classes of unauthorized immigrants, more residents and visitors without documents fear run-ins with police.

On New Hampshire's diverse Southern border, a traffic stop in one town could lead to very different consequences than the same kind of stop one town over.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

A Windham lawmaker is hoping to rewrite New Hampshire's election laws in an effort to prevent what he calls potential voter fraud.

One of his proposals received some pushback Wednesday particularly from those who would have to abide by one specific change to current law.  

Emily Corwin / NHPR

Over the summer, Nashua aldermen voted to make Nashua a sister city with Mysore, India - a city 100 miles southwest of Bangalore.

Now, a local Rotary Club is sending a group of four Americans there.  

Nashua residents recently packed City Hall to urge their aldermen to back a resolution that would affirm the city’s welcoming stance toward refugees and immigrants. Activists and others spoke in support of the newcomers, but they also had a somewhat unlikely ally: the city’s business leaders, who say foreign-born residents would boost Nashua’s economic vitality.

Sean Hurley

November 29, 1964 is known in the Catholic Church as “the day Mass changed.” It didn’t take a day – more like five years - but by 1969 the vernacular “New Mass” had taken hold and the traditional Latin Mass, in place for 400 years, largely became a thing of the past.  But as NHPR’s Sean Hurley reports, the Latin Mass is making something of a comeback here in New Hampshire.

For five years John Brancich fought fires in the Black Hills National Forest of South Dakota.

Ted Siefer

For the growing immigrant communities in southern New Hampshire, the language barrier poses many challenges, from schools to public transit. The city of Nashua has come up with a novel way to help city bus drivers communicate with passengers with limited English abilities. 

 

Nashua Catholic Church To Reopen - For Latin Mass

May 23, 2016

New Hampshire's Catholic diocese says it's reopening a church in Nashua for fans of the Latin Mass. 

Sheryl Rich-Kern for NHPR

It’s not such a surprise anymore to see towns set up pianos on downtown sidewalks with the hope of getting people to stop and play and chat with each other. More than 50 cities around the world do it and in Littleton, New Hampshire, pianos have been on the streets for the past five years.

This spring, Nashua is setting up its own project with two painted pianos on Main Street. But is anyone playing?

Janet Chaney from Hollis is. There’s not much of a crowd here on the corner of Main Street and Pearl, so she tries to draw people closer to the bench.

Sheryl Rich-Kern for NHPR

In the wake of the killings in Brussels, Paris, the Mideast, and San Bernardino, more people in New Hampshire want to learn how to respond to an active shooter — in the critical minutes before police and medics arrive.

Active shooter trainings in workplaces, schools and for state employees are increasingly offered throughout the state.

And in Nashua, police are holding free training sessions to teach civilians what they can do.

Sean Sylvain of Nashua says he never lets his guard down.

Nashua Mayor Looks To Build Public Support For Rail

Mar 21, 2016
Brady Carlson for NHPR / NHPR

  Nashua Mayor Jim Donchess is hosting an event tonight to highlight a proposed commuter rail service between southern New Hampshire and Boston. 

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