NH News

NH News
6:41 am
Tue March 3, 2015

N.H. Bill Would Ban Smoking In Cars When Children Under 18 Are Present

Credit SuperFantastic / Flickr Creative Commons

Lawmakers will hear arguments Tuesday on a bill that would ban smoking in a car when a minor is present.

The legislation would make it illegal to smoke tobacco products in a vehicle with a passenger under the age of 18.

State Senator David Watters is the bill’s prime sponsor.

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NH News
9:23 am
Mon March 2, 2015

State Climatologist: February One Of Coldest, Snowiest Months In N.H. History

Credit Allegra Boverman for NHPR

February was a brutally cold and snowy month for New Hampshire, but just how bad was it?

State Climatologist Mary Stampone joined Morning Edition to share some facts and figures from the past month of winter weather.

Put February into context for us. It was cold, but was this the coldest February in state history?

It is likely to be one of the coldest Februarys on record throughout much of the state. Some stations it’ll likely be the coldest, while at some others it will be within the top five coldest.

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NH News
7:11 am
Mon March 2, 2015

Competing N.H. Bills Would Increase, Eliminate Domestic Violence Funding

Credit Allegra Boverman / NHPR

 

New Hampshire lawmakers are considering competing bills to either increase or eliminate funding to help victims of domestic violence.

A marriage license currently costs $45, with $7 going to towns and cities and $38 to a domestic violence grant program.

The House Ways and Means Committee is holding a public hearing Monday on a bill that would increase the fee to $50 and send $43 to the grant program.

Meanwhile, the full House will be voting Wednesday on whether to send the $38 that now goes to the domestic violence program into in the general fund instead.

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NH News
12:34 am
Mon March 2, 2015

Residents Work To Close Town Meeting "Information Gap" With Web Tools

Carolyn Fetter writes the blog InTheKnowHampton.org
Credit Emily Corwin / NHPR

To function, town governments in New Hampshire rely on an informed citizenry. But getting informed can be overwhelming. Deliberative sessions take all day, warrant articles can be technical and hard to understand, and candidates can be numerous.

Now, civic-minded residents are finding ways to help.

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NH News
6:55 pm
Sun March 1, 2015

House To Vote On Indoor Tanning Prohibition For Minors

Credit Tom Vagliery via Flickr CC

On Wednesday members of the House will vote on a bill that prohibits minors from using tanning facilities. 

The bill requires indoor tanning operators to obtain proof that customers are over the age of 18. They would also have to sign a consent form acknowledging the risks of indoor tanning.

The American Pediatric Association and the World Health Organization’s Cancer research agency have recommended the measure. It’s already law in nine other states and the District of Columbia.

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NH News
4:55 pm
Fri February 27, 2015

Keene State Will Chip In For Pumpkin Fest Police Bill

Credit Courtesy Kaitlyn Coogan / Keene Sentinel

Keene State College will reimburse the city of Keene for police over-time incurred during last fall’s Pumpkin Fest riots.

The bill for the police response to rioters during the Pumpkin fest was $90,000 dollars. The festival’s organizers, Let It Shine Inc, has already paid $59,000, but said that it should not be responsible for the whole bill. Keene State announced Let It Shine will make another payment and then the college will cover whatever remains.

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NH News
6:54 am
Thu February 26, 2015

N.H. Liquor Commission Reports Record Sales Of Locally Made Wines And Spirits

Andy Harthcock of Djinn Spirits in Nashua.
Credit Courtesy of NHLC

The New Hampshire Liquor Commission says sales of locally produced wines and spirits reached a record high of $1.35 million. Sales grew by 32.5% over the past fiscal year.

Liquor Commission Chairman Joseph Mollica attributes this growth to prominent product placement in the state’s liquor stores.

“We’re very supportive of them and we appreciate their hard work and dedication to their craft. And we’re happy to promote their products as New Hampshire citizens.”

The Liquor Commission also provides local producers with free warehouse storage.

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NH News
6:00 am
Thu February 26, 2015

DRED Commissioner Rose To Decide On Sunapee Plan By Spring

West Bowl area highlighted in yellow.
Credit Mount Sunapee Advisory Committee

The Mount Sunapee ski resort is hoping to build out a new 75 acre area of the mountain known as the “West Bowl” with new trails and a new, high speed chairlift. But to do that, it needs to overcome some environmental concerns. Opponents to the plan say the build-out would likely raze a section of forest that a new report says is part of a thriving ecosystem with some trees as old as 170 years-old.

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NH News
5:08 pm
Wed February 25, 2015

Newport Ceases Backup Ambulance Service To Other Towns

Credit Julian via Flickr CC

Officials in Newport, New Hampshire, say they need to focus on their own residents first when it comes to ambulance service.

The Valley News reports that starting June 30, Newport will no longer provide backup ambulance service to Lempster, New London, Newbury, Springfield, Grantham and half of Sunapee. It will continue to provide service to other towns that have contracts with Newport Ambulance, and mutual aid agreements will not be affected.

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NH News
4:35 pm
Wed February 25, 2015

Increasing Longevity Of Pets' Lives Has Some Owners Seeking Animal Hospice Care

Cats and dogs are living longer these days. And more old pets is giving rise to more options for pet owners looking for pet hospice and end-of-life care.

Sharon Sernik shepherds her two greyhounds over to the feeding bowls in her Merrimack kitchen. The dogs tromp past a room that was probably meant for formal dining — but is now more like a canine retreat, with scattered pillows on a bare floor for the seven household pets. 

"We’ve got a hydrocephalic dachshund and a twisted kitty."

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NH News
3:46 pm
Wed February 25, 2015

Four N.H. Writers To Be Inducted Into 'Literary Hall Of Fame'

Robert Frost, John Irving, Donald Hall and Grace Metalious

Governor Maggie Hassan and the New Hampshire Writers' Project announced the four inaugural inductees to the New Hampshire Literary Hall of Fame Wednesday. The Hall of Fame will be housed as a permanent exhibit and artifact collection at SNHU's Learning Library on the school's Hooksett campus.

Writers' Project Board President Rob Greene and SNHU's Dean of the Shapiro Library, Kathryn Growney, stopped by NHPR's studio to talk about the inductees and the New Hampshire Literary Hall of Fame.

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NH News
6:00 am
Wed February 25, 2015

Bill Would Make N.H. The First To Mandate Criminal Sentencing Attendance

Seth Mazzaglia listening to victim impact statements from family and friends of Lizzie Marriott.
Credit AP Video/Still

  Last year, Seth Mazzaglia was convicted of the rape and murder of UNH student Lizzie Marriott. But after the conviction he sought to avoid being present for the sentencing hearing. He ultimately withdrew that request, but family members of the victim were surprised and angered. They had to face the prospect that they may not have their one chance throughout the proceedings to speak directly to the killer.

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NH News
5:02 pm
Tue February 24, 2015

Five-Story Snow Piles Cover Peirce Island

An excavator on the pile scoops up the snow

The city of Portsmouth has been hauling snow from town and dumping it on Peirce Island, just across from the Naval Shipyard. But now, Public Works Director Peter Rice says the island is filling up. 

 Everything but the road is covered in mountains of snow on Peirce Island.    At the very end of the road, a snow pile towers two or three stories high.  If you peer over the hill to the park below – you see the pile doubles in size.

“This is unprecedented. We’ve never seen this before, like this. This has been amazing,” Lister revels.

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NH News
3:15 pm
Tue February 24, 2015

N.H. House GOP Leader Pens Opposition to Gas Pipeline

Credit Credit Kinder Morgan / http://www.kindermorgan.com/content/docs/TGP_Northeast_Energy_Direct_Fact_Sheet.pdf

The Republican Majority Leader in the New Hampshire House of Representatives has asked federal regulators to reject a proposal to build a natural gas pipeline in Southern New Hampshire.

Jack Flanagan – who represents two towns on the proposed pipeline’s route – says he prefers a competing project in Massachusetts that would widen existing pipelines.

“It made sense to me that if you have an existing pipeline, why would you need a new one? Let’s just make the existing one a little bit larger to handle the demand,” Flanagan said in a phone interview.

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NH News
9:01 am
Tue February 24, 2015

Killer Of Pamela Smart's Husband Scheduled For Parole Hearing

William "Billy" Flynn in 2008

  A man who was 16 when his adult lover recruited him and his friends to kill her husband in New Hampshire is scheduled for a parole hearing in March.

William ``Billy'' Flynn was transferred last year to a facility in Warren, Maine, as part of a work-release program.

Flynn testified against Pamela Smart, saying she wanted her husband dead so she wouldn't lose her condo, furniture and dog in a divorce.

Flynn pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in the death of Gregg Smart in May 1990 and was sentenced to 28 years to life in prison.

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NH News
6:00 am
Tue February 24, 2015

Katrina Swett And Petitioners Offer To Take Saudi Man's Lashes

Raif Badawi, the Saudi blogger sentenced to 1,000 lashes for insulting Islam.

A New Hampshire woman, along with hundreds more, is offering to receive a portion of the 1,000 lashes reserved for Raif Badawi. Badawi is a Saudi blogger sentenced by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia on the charge of insulting Islam.

Dr. Katrina Lantos Swett is the wife of former New Hampshire congressman, Dick Swett. She’s presently serving as chairwoman of the US Commission on International Religious Freedom and as President of the Lantos Foundation for Human Rights and Justice.

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NH News
7:53 am
Mon February 23, 2015

Slowdown In Federal Funding May Leave N.H. With Steep Bill For Roads

Credit Flikr Creative Commons / Mortmer

According to a report by the Associate Press, Federal transportation dollars for New Hampshire road maintenance fell by more than %5 between 2008 and 2013. New Hampshire’s department of transportation spending has also fallen by more than 16% over roughly the same period.

This has meant delays to regular maintenance to secondary roads and bridges. And as these roadways deteriorate, the state will have to pay a higher price for reconstruction.

New Hampshire rates more than a third of state roads as in “poor” condition. And another 50 miles get added to the list each year.

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NH News
7:49 am
Mon February 23, 2015

Poll: New Hampshire Residents Optimistic About Economy

  A poll shows that New Hampshire residents remain optimistic about the national and state economies, as well as their own financial status.   The findings are based on the latest Business and Industry Association Report on Consumer Confidence, conducted by the University of New Hampshire Survey Center.   When asked how New Hampshire businesses will do over the next year, 55 percent of residents said they think state businesses will enjoy good times financially. Only 19 percent think they will experience bad times, and 26 percent anticipate mixed conditions.   The phone poll of 509 randomly

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NH News
9:03 am
Sun February 22, 2015

Volunteers Shovel Snow From Auburn School Roof

Credit Via aburnscholarsfordollars.org

 Volunteers spent one of their weekend mornings shoveling snow from the roof of a school in the New Hampshire town of Auburn before more snow arrived.

Fire Chief Bruce Phillips says about 40 people showed up Saturday morning in what he called it "a great community event."

He says the roof of the Auburn Village School had been deemed safe but with more snow in the forecast — and the potential for heavy wet snow — crews started on Friday to remove the load.

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NH News
8:10 am
Fri February 20, 2015

In Concord, February On Track To Be Coldest On Record

Concord in winter.
Credit Brian Wallstin

  It's been a cold February in New Hampshire, and it could go down in the record books as one of the coldest in Concord since weather observers started keeping records in 1869.

Temperatures in February have averaged 11.3 degrees below normal for the month so far in the state's capital. It hasn't risen above freezing since Feb. 10.

The coldest February on record so far in Concord is 1934, when the average temperature for the month was 12 degrees.

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NH News
7:42 am
Fri February 20, 2015

Kibby Kidnapping Trial Slated For Next Year

Nathaniel Kibby.
Credit NH Attorney General

  The case of Nathaniel Kibby, the Gorham man accused of kidnapping and repeatedly sexually assaulting a Conway teenager for several months, will likely go to trial next year. That’s according to a superior court justice who presided over a dispositional hearing Thursday.

After listening to both defense and prosecution, Judge Peter Bornstein said he's putting the trial on track for January of 2016. The delay was largely to afford the defense enough time to sift through thousands of pages and dozens of CDs containing evidence provided by the prosecution.

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NH News
6:05 pm
Thu February 19, 2015

Striking FairPoint Workers To Vote On New Contract

Credit Ibew Fairpoint via Flickr CC

New Hampshire FairPoint workers who have been on strike since October will vote on a new labor agreement Saturday. Ratification meetings will take place in both Manchester and Portsmouth.

Vermont workers cast their on Friday; Maine workers will follow suit on Sunday.

The new agreement comes after more than a month of negotiations led by a federal mediator.

 

Union representatives say ratification of the contract will be announced Sunday night. If successful, more than 1,700 striking workers could be back to work as early as next week.

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NH News
2:48 pm
Wed February 18, 2015

New England Electric Ratepayers Eyed To Fund Gas Pipeline

While the Kinder Morgan natural gas pipeline proposed for the Southern tier of the state has gotten a lot of attention of late it’s not the only project proposed for the region. There’s another pipeline build-out on the table in Massachusetts, and people in New Hampshire – even those who don’t buy any natural gas – could wind up both paying for it, and benefiting from it.

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NH News
1:46 pm
Wed February 18, 2015

House Bill Targets Chain Of N.H. Pain Clinics

Pain Care Center location in Somersworth
Allegra Boverman for NHPR

The owner of the state’s largest chain of pain clinics would be forced to forfeit his financial interest in the practice if legislation pending in the House becomes law.

House Bill 517 would require physicians who lose their licenses to practice to cut their ownership ties to any health-care facilities.

The lead sponsor, Republican Rep. Don Leeman of Rochester, said the bill is aimed at one of the state’s most visible medical practices: Dr. O’Connell’s Pain Care Centers, Inc.

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NH News
8:15 am
Wed February 18, 2015

Unpredictable Pressure Formation May Mean Snow For Seacoast

Snow in Rye
Credit Allegra Boverman for NHPR

  Rob Carolan with Hometown Forecast says an unpredictable ‘trough’ of low pressure sitting in the Atlantic is poised to bring some possible snow to the seacoast area this afternoon.

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NH News
6:00 am
Wed February 18, 2015

N.H. The Only State In Region With No Addiction Recovery Services

New Hampshire is in the midst of a drug epidemic. The state’s Medical Examiner’s office says drug-related deaths have risen to a record high of 300 in 2014. To combat the most addictive drugs, lawmakers will consider tripling funding for the Governor’s Commission on Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention, Treatment and Recovery.

Of those three things, recovery services are severely lacking in New Hampshire, compared to neighboring states.

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NH News
4:43 pm
Tue February 17, 2015

Hassan Banks on Keno But Still Wants A Casino

Credit Dave via Flickr CC

 

Gov. Maggie Hassan says she still wants to bring a casino to NH but is a "realist."

The Governor told lawmakers her decision to fund her $11.5 billion budget with $27m from yet-to-be-legal Keno doesn’t mean she’s changed her mind about supporting a full-blown Casino.

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NH News
4:49 pm
Mon February 16, 2015

UNH Researchers Tie Flame Retardant Chemicals To Obesity And Diabetes

Nutritional Scientist Gale Carey
Credit University of New Hamshire

  Researchers at the University of New Hampshire say it’s not just bad diets and little exercise causing rising rates of obesity and diabetes.    In fact, synthetic chemicals used in household items like couches and carpet padding may play a part in both of those conditions.

When Nutritional Scientist Gale Carey at UNH exposed healthy rats to high doses of flame retardant chemicals, and then inspected their fat tissue, she found that "metabolically, chemically, it behaves like it's from an animal that is obese. But the animal is not obese."

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NH News
1:55 pm
Mon February 16, 2015

Trying Times For Waste Removal, Newspaper Delivery Workers

Credit NHPR Staff

  After working triple and quadruple shifts plowing the roads in Portsmouth, public workers in Portsmouth climb into garbage trucks for regular trash removal.

Public Works Director Peter Rice says storms and snow make even trash pickup a trying endeavor. "People are trying to pass them on these narrow roads while they’re trying to pick up trash,” Rice says. “You know these guysare exhausted, they are stretched thin.”

The Portsmouth Herald’s newspaper delivery crew is also struggling.

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