NH News

NH News
5:45 pm
Tue June 25, 2013

Hassan Signs 'Dealers' Bill Of Rights'

Governor Hassan shakes farm equipment dealer Charlie Girardi, after signing the "dealers' bill of rights" into law.
Credit Abby Kessler

  Governor Maggie Hassan signed a bill into law today that gives New Hampshire auto equipment dealers new protections in their contracts with vehicle manufacturers.

The new law makes it harder for manufacturers to close down dealerships, and increases dealers’ reimbursements for warranty repairs. It also limits required building renovations to every 15 years.  

The biggest victors may be the state’s farm equipment dealers, who were not included in the state’s previous auto dealers bill of rights.

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NH News
3:21 pm
Sat June 22, 2013

With Lean Growing Season, Strawberry Festival To Continue

The annual Hollis Strawberry Festival will be held Sunday afternoon. Sponsored by the Hollis Woman’s Club and Town Band, the festival is in its sixth decade.

But this season is proving to be a challenge for berry growers.

Together, Lull and Brookford farms typically provide the festival with 336 quarts of strawberries.

But Brookford Farm co-owner Eleanor Whittemore says the cold winter and rainy spring means strawberries are more likely to rot.

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NH News
5:15 pm
Fri June 21, 2013

State Employees Union Heads Back To Bargaining Table

The State Employees Association is sending negotiators back to the bargaining table, after a tentative agreement had been reached with the state. The $35 million agreement would give state workers their first raise in 5 years, but requires state employees to pay health care deductibles for the first time. 

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NH News
5:11 pm
Thu June 20, 2013

Compromise Allows For Student IDs At Polls, Delays Photo-Taking Provision

As part of a deal reached Thursday, New Hampshire college students will still be able to use their student IDs when voting.

The compromise also delays a provision requiring town clerks to take photos of voters without IDs.

Under current law, student IDs would no longer be a valid form of identification at the polls, starting with elections this fall.

But through a Committee of Conference, House and Senate lawmakers agreed to keep students IDs on the list.

Lead House negotiator Gary Richardson, a Democrat, said he expects the House to support the deal.

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NH News
2:37 pm
Thu June 20, 2013

Manchester Chamber Kicks Off Lunches In Veterans Park

Professionals eat lunch in Veterans Park in Manchester
Credit Jonathan Lynch / NHPR

Professionals from around downtown Manchester ate out Thursday afternoon at Veterans Park.

The event is the first in a series of lunches to be held over the summer. Hosted by the Manchester Chamber of Commerce, the program aims to rehabilitate the image of Veterans Park.

Jessica Chambers is the Parks Planner for the city of Manchester and says that the park has acquired a bad reputation:

“The park gets a bad rap for drug use, loitering, homelessness; I think that word has really detracted from the people coming by to visit it.”

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NH News
1:34 pm
Thu June 20, 2013

House, Senate Budget Proposal Includes Medicaid Expansion Study

House and Senate negotiators have come to an agreement on a proposed two-year budget.

The budget plan approved by a Committee of Conference establishes a study commission that will report back on Medicaid expansion by Oct. 15.

The proposal also includes funding for a new women’s prison.

Lawmakers met late into the early hours this morning negotiating the terms of the budget.

The committee reconvened at noon today to approve the deal.

Both chambers will take full votes on the spending proposal next week.

NH News
10:49 am
Thu June 20, 2013

N.H. Senators Call On State Department To Renew Efforts to Find Missing Journalist

Credit Nicole Tung, courtesy FreeJamesFoley.org.

U.S. Senators Kelly Ayotte and Jeanne Shaheen are calling on the State Department to renew efforts to find a freelance journalist from New Hampshire who went missing seven months ago.

James Foley was last seen in Syria on Nov. 22.

That’s when family members from Rochester say he was kidnapped by gunmen.

In a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry, Senators Ayotte and Shaheen urged the state department to use "every resource and means available to find him."

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NH News
5:38 pm
Wed June 19, 2013

Hooksett Welcome Center Upgrades Get Green Light

An artist's rendering of the new Hooksett Welcome Center.
New Hampshire Department of Transportation

The Executive Council signed off Wednesday on the redevelopment and upgrade of the Hooksett Welcome Centers on I-93.

The deal includes a 35-year lease agreement with Granite State Hospitality to oversee the design, construction and operation of the new facilities.

The project’s centerpiece – two 36,000 square foot buildings, one on each side of the highway, replacing the current state liquor store and rest stop facilities.

Each building will house new Common Man restaurants, an expanded state liquor store and wine outlet, a convenience store, and a visitor center.

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NH News
5:17 pm
Wed June 19, 2013

State Employees May Get First Raise In Five Years This July

State employees may be getting their first raises in 5 years, after labor unions reached tentative agreements with the state Tuesday night. 

Wages will rise 1.5 percent this July, then 2.25 percent in both 2014 and 2015.  But, workers will have to contribute to their dental plans, and pay a gradually increasing health insurance deductible.

That is: IF union leadership signs off on the agreements. State Employees Association president Diana Lacey says the master bargaining team will present the agreement to her union’s leadership Thursday night:

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NH News
4:44 pm
Wed June 19, 2013

Community College Adjunct Professors Claim State Stonewalling Contract

Adjunct professors working in New Hampshire’s community colleges are asking the state’s labor board to intervene in negotiations on a union contract.

The move comes after two years of failed negotiations.

The State Employees Association filed an unfair labor practice petition this week on behalf of the adjunct professors.

It accuses community college system officials of obstructing negotiations on a first contract with the union.

Craig Lange is an adjunct professor in Nashua.

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NH News
2:57 pm
Wed June 19, 2013

Dodgeball Ban Overturned in Windham

Windham school officials have overturned a decision made earlier this year to ban ‘human target sports,’ including dodgeball.

School board members are allowing these sports back into the curriculum with modifications.

The ban in Windham was prompted by parents’ concerns that these types of games would encourage bullying at the middle school level.

However, its passage generated controversy both locally and nationally.

Windham Superintendent Henry LaBranche says when the sports come back in the fall they will be different.

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NH News
10:54 am
Wed June 19, 2013

Autopsy Shows Nashua Elderly Couple Stabbed To Death In Home

Police are asking for the public’s help as they investigate the murder of an elderly couple in Nashua.

Autopsy results released Wednesday show that William and Eleanor Grant were stabbed to death in their Newbury Street home.

Their bodies were discovered Monday.

Attorney General Joe Foster says their deaths have been ruled homicides.

No arrests have been made and the investigation is ongoing.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Nashua Police Department.

NH News
4:44 pm
Tue June 18, 2013

Senate And House Negotiators Agree On New Womens Prison

Outside the women's prison in Goffstown
Credit Emily Corwin

  Negotiators for the House and Senate reached an agreement Tuesday on a $125 million capital budget which includes $38 million for a new women’s prison. 

The new women's prison is slated to be built in Concord, behind the current men’s prison.

Commissioner Wrenn with the Department of Corrections has sought a new women's prison for the last four state budgets. But this year, he says, he had the support of Governor Hassan, and both chambers.

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NH News
3:03 pm
Tue June 18, 2013

Deal On Medical Marijuana Wins Hassan's Support

At issue for Governor Hassan was a provision in the House version of the bill that would allow qualifying  patients to grow their own marijuan. Hassan also didn’t like that the House wanted to permit doctors to prescribe cannabis to treat PTSD.

The N.H. Senate had removed both provisions from the its version bill at Hassan’s behest, and House negotiators say under the circumstances going along made sense. Concord Democrat Jim McKay is Chairman of the House Health and Human Services Committee.

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NH News
5:31 pm
Mon June 17, 2013

Strafford County Superior Court Rules Against Education Tax Credit Provision

The Strafford County Superior Court ruled Monday that part of the education tax credit law passed last year is unconstitutional.  The court concluded that the privately raised scholarships amount to public funds.


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