NH News

NH News
7:31 am
Tue December 16, 2014

State: Hike Spaulding Turnpike Speed From 55 To 65

Credit NCReed / Flickr Creative Commons

 

The New Hampshire Department of Transportation plans to increase the speed limit on the Spaulding Turnpike from 55 to 65 mph between Dover and Rochester.

The new speed limit on the 10 mile stretch from Exit 9 in Dover to Exit 16 in Rochester will take effect starting Jan. 1.

The change comes after a study this year determined the limit could be raised following completion of the multi-lane, divided highway through Exit 16. State police weighed in on the new limit.

The speed limit will remain 55 mph south of Exit 9 and through the toll plaza in Rochester.

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NH News
7:49 pm
Mon December 15, 2014

PSNH Announces Winter Rate Hike, Smaller Than Other Utilities

Credit Christian Patti / http://christianpatti.com/

The state’s largest electric company has asked for a winter price hike. Even after the increase Public Service of New Hampshire will still have the lowest winter rate of any utility in the state.

PSNH has asked regulators for an energy rate of 10.56 six cents per kilowatt hour, an increase from the current rate of 9.87 cents per kWh. The utility estimates that for an average rate-payer, using between 500 and 700 kWh per month, bills will rise somewhere between $5 and $8.

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NH News
3:21 pm
Mon December 15, 2014

Report Highlights Changes In State's Homeless Population

A report on homelessness says New Hampshire's overall homeless population has decreased by 3 percent, but says there's been an increase among veterans and chronic cases.

In a report out Monday, the New Hampshire Coalition to End Homelessness says the overall decrease started in 2011 thanks to the collective work of agencies, policymakers and others. It says more resources are needed, including continued investment in affordable housing.

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NH News
7:47 pm
Sun December 14, 2014

North Country Project Receives Grant To Research Coos County Experiences

A research project that examines the experiences and attitudes of Coos County youth and young adults has received a grant of nearly $128,000 from a charitable fund that supports organizations in northern New Hampshire and surrounding areas.

The Carsey School of Public Policy at the University of New Hampshire in Durham received the grant from the Neil and Louise Tillotson Fund of the New Hampshire Charitable Foundation.

The grant is one of 14 totaling nearly $1.2 million awarded to municipal, educational and nonprofit groups.

NH News
7:17 pm
Sat December 13, 2014

Strawbery Banke Ice Rink Opens At Last

Credit Emily Corwin / NHPR

  A new skating rink at the Strawbery Banke museum in Portsmouth opened for its first full day on Saturday.

Twenty-four year old Portsmouth resident Melissa Towle was lacing up her boots Saturday afternoon with her stepdaughter.

I haven't ice-skated since I was about her age so I'm just hoping I don't hurt myself!

The rink took two years in development:  advocates overcame a pricey legal battle waged by wary neighbors, and raised over $450,000 dollars.

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NH News
6:59 pm
Fri December 12, 2014

Peaceful Protest Against Police Brutality Draws 80 To Market Square

Abby Colby and Sophie Webb
Emily Corwin NHPR

About 80 people gathered in Market Square in Portsmouth Friday night to show solidarity with African American victims of police brutality.

A few people of color stood among a largely white crowd. Some stood quietly, others chanted "We Shall Overcome." 

PaMela Ramsay held a sign reading “Black Lives Matter.” She’s a third generation Portsmouth Native, and African American. "It's always been very white here," she said, "and it's extremely encouraging, extremely emotional, and I'm just so happy to see all these people who would support people of color."

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NH News
2:18 pm
Fri December 12, 2014

Kuster, Shea-Porter Split On Last-Minute, $1.1 Trillion Spending Deal

Credit NHPR Staff

New Hampshire’s Democratic representatives in the U.S. House were split on the $1.1 trillion spending package that narrowly passed the House late last night.

2nd District Congresswoman Ann Kuster voted for the bill, saying it was critical to avoid a government shutdown.

Kuster says she remains concerned about some aspects of the bill, including a provision that would increase the limits on some political donations.

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NH News
1:18 pm
Fri December 12, 2014

UNH Looks To Keep Playoff Run Going

Credit Via UNH Wildcats website

The top-ranked University of New Hampshire football team is looking to continue its playoff run tonight.

The Wildcats will host the University of Tennessee-Chattanooga tonight at 8 in the quarterfinals of the FCS tournament.

The game will be played under the lights at Cowell Stadium in Durham.

UNH enters the game with an 11-1 record, and the number one seed in the playoffs.

The Wildcats have won 11 in a row, and defeated Fordham University last weekend to advance.

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NH News
12:47 pm
Fri December 12, 2014

In 12-Day Span, Six Die From Suspected Heroin Overdoses In Manchester

Credit Courtesy of MPD

Police in Manchester are dealing with a recent spate of fatalities caused by drug overdoses.

Between Nov. 26 and Dec. 7, the city saw six overdose deaths.

Sgt. Brian O’Keefe says the department is waiting for toxicology results to confirm, but the suspicion is heroin use was involved in each case.

“Heroin today is roughly 30 to 40 percent purity," he said. "So if they add a few percentage of more pure ingredients such as heroin to the current product on the market, that can cause the uptick in fatalities.”

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NH News
12:05 pm
Fri December 12, 2014

N.H. Using $25K Grant To Crack Down On Drunk Driving During Holidays

New Hampshire Liquor Commission Division of Enforcement and Licensing Director James Wilson talks about efforts to crack down on drunk driving during the holiday season.
Credit NHPR / Michael Brindley

The New Hampshire Liquor Commission will use a $25,000 grant to crack down on drunk driving during the holiday season.

Division of Enforcement and Licensing Director James Wilson says they’ll partner with local police to track where those charged had their last drink.

“This data sharing is a crucial investigating tool for law enforcement to track and monitor establishments that could pose threats to public safety.”

Wilson says enforcement officers are also ramping up patrols and will go undercover to investigate businesses that may be over serving.

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NH News
3:07 pm
Thu December 11, 2014

Strawbery Banke Museum Skating Rink Set To Open Friday

A Zamboni smooths the ice at the Puddle Duck Pond rink at the Strawbery Banke Museum in Portsmouth. The rink is set to open Friday.
Credit Barbara MacLeod

A new skating rink at the Strawbery Banke Museum in Portsmouth is set to open Friday morning.

The Puddle Duck Pond rink had been scheduled to open Dec. 1, but was delayed due to issues with construction and the weather.

With heavy rain in the area this week, there was concern about another delay, but museum spokesman Barbara MacLeod says the city gave the rink the green light Thursday afternoon.

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NH News
10:46 am
Thu December 11, 2014

Gittell: Faculty Cuts At NHTI Due To Slumping Tuition Revenue

Ross Gittell

The chancellor of the state’s community college system says recent cuts in staff at New Hampshire Technical Institute were necessary due to a shortfall in tuition revenue.

Speaking on The Exchange this morning, Chancellor Ross Gittell says the Concord school hasn’t experienced the same type of growth as community colleges in other parts of the state.

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NH News
10:42 am
Thu December 11, 2014

FairPoint: 'Hardware Problem' Caused Outages In New Hampshire, Vermont

 

FairPoint Communications says a problem that occurred during routine maintenance led to a loss of high-speed Internet service for thousands of customers in Vermont and New Hampshire.

Spokesman Jeff Nevins says the hardware problem knocked out service for all of Vermont and part of New Hampshire on Thursday.

With about 1,800 FairPoint workers on strike in Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont, a management employee was performing the maintenance late Wednesday on equipment that routes Internet traffic. The first outages were reported early Thursday.

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NH News
7:52 am
Thu December 11, 2014

Avalanche Advisory Issued For Mount Washington

Credit John Cudworth via Flickr CC

 Mount Washington has recorded its first avalanche of the season.

Snow rangers say a climber descending Yale Gully on Monday triggered a small avalanche below him.

The rangers advised that traveling through small snowfields can put hikers into or underneath unstable snow.

A general avalanche advisory for the mountain, which has the highest peak in the Northeast United States at 6,288 feet, expires at midnight Thursday.

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NH News
4:58 pm
Wed December 10, 2014

N.H. Supreme Court Favors The State In Pension Contribution Decision

Credit Ben McLeod / Flickr Creative Commons

The New Hampshire Supreme Court has said the state can increase public employees’ pension contributions, even after workers have spent 10-plus years on the job.

The ruling reverses a Superior Court decision, which could have required the state to refund $75 million dollars in pension contributions to some 25,000 public employees.

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NH News
7:23 am
Wed December 10, 2014

Shaheen Calls CIA Torture Report 'Disturbing,' Ayotte Concerned About Timing

Sen. Kelly Ayotte
Credit CBS

New Hampshire U.S. Senator Kelly Ayotte says she has concerns about the timing of a report released Tuesday exposing the CIA’s harsh interrogation of suspected terrorist detainees following the Sept. 11 attacks.

The report from the Senate Intelligence Committee described the CIA’s techniques as “deeply flawed” and found the agency misled Congress and the White House about its methods.

New Hampshire U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen says she’s disturbed by the findings and said releasing the report was the right thing to do.

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NH News
7:13 am
Wed December 10, 2014

A Foot Of Snow Up North, But Not Much More Expected

Early in the evening road crews were loading up and preparing for a long night.
Credit Chris Jensen for NHPR

By early evening the snow was heavy in the North Country, keeping road crews working most of the night.

About 7 p.m. a trained weather spotter reported snow falling at the rate of two to three inches per hour near Orford, said Chris Legro a forecaster with the National Weather Service in Gray, Maine.

Legro said morning snow totals have yet to be reported but the highest last night was 10.9 inches in Randolph.

But there shouldn’t be any significant snowfall today.

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NH News
11:33 pm
Tue December 9, 2014

In Somersworth, Friends, Not Jobs, Bring Millennials Home

"Paul [Goodwin's] 25 birthday - April 2013," writes DeSantis. "That's who we usually talk about when we refer to the Hill kids from our year. That's Pat [Jackman] up front left, then James Thompson in back, then Paul [Goodwin], then Emmett, Aaron [Wysocki], Me, and Leigh [Messier] is in front. At the time of that picture, only James wasn't living in Somo'" - Maddie DeSantis
Credit Maddie DeSantis

  When it comes to our state’s economic future, policymakers and business leaders bemoan New Hampshire’s aging population and the state’s failure to lure young people back to the state after college.  Usually, jobs are seen as the antidote. But in Somersworth, a youth renaissance is taking place thanks not to any employer – but to the strength of twelve millennials’ childhood bonds.

First, picture Somersworth. It’s got a couple pizza and sub shops, a pawn shop, a thrift store, and like in a lot of old New England mill towns, that’s about it.

NH News
1:40 pm
Tue December 9, 2014

Manchester School Board Members Quit Panel Over Handling Of Student's Return

Three Manchester school board members have resigned from the board’s student conduct committee, protesting a decision by school officials to allow a student accused of assault back into school.

The five-member subcommittee was in the process of deciding whether to expel the student.

That’s when committee member Art Beaudry says district administrators circumvented the process, recommending to the full board last month the student be allowed to return.

The board approved that recommendation, leading Beaudry and two others to step down from the committee on Monday.

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NH News
10:57 am
Tue December 9, 2014

Sens. Ayotte, Shaheen: Defense Bill Includes Pease And Shipyard Funding

The Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in 2013
Credit Via Wikimedia Commons

New Hampshire Sens. Kelly Ayotte and Jeanne Shaheen say the annual defense bill has provisions that authorize funding for the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard and the Pease Air National Guard Base.

The senators, both members of the Senate Armed Services Committee, say the bill authorizes the procurement of two Virginia Class submarines and funding at the shipyard, based in Kittery, Maine.

Funding also is included for the KC-46A Pegasus aerial refueling tanker program at Pease. The new tankers will replace the Air Force's current fleet of 1950s-era KC-135s.

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NH News
8:04 am
Tue December 9, 2014

Plea Deadline Coming For Woman Charged In Fatal Hampton Bike Crash

As Darriean Hess drove southbound over the Underwood bridge in Hampton, she veered over the median, striking four cyclists.
Credit Emily Corwin for NHPR

An unlicensed New Hampshire driver charged with driving into a group of bicyclists last year, killing two of them, is facing a Friday deadline to let a judge know if she will enter a guilty plea.

Related: Click here to see a photo gallery of the aftermath of the crash.

Police said 20-year-old Darriean Hess of Seabrook was speeding and under the influence of drugs when she ran into the bicyclists in Hampton. Hess was stopped for speeding in the same area hours earlier.

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NH News
6:53 am
Tue December 9, 2014

Storm Update: Icy Weather To Resume Today, Advisory In Effect For North Country

Ice coats a car in Hopkinton
Credit NHPR Staff

For the latest weather information and power outage maps, visit NHPR's weather information page right here.

Tune in to NHPR for weather information throughout the day.

  8:06 AM

The winter weather has led to a number of power outages for New Hampshire Electric Cooperative customers.

The utility’s spokesman Seth Wheeler says the outages peaked around 6 yesterday evening, with 5,600 customers out.

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NH News
5:22 pm
Mon December 8, 2014

Manchester Tackling Gun And Gang Crime With Outreach And Tough Penalties

From right Chief David Mara, U.S. District Attorney John Kacavas, N.H. Attorney General Joe Foster and Hillsborough County Attorney Patricia LaFrance.
Credit Ryan Lessard / NHPR

The Manchester Police Department has announced the formation of a multi-agency collaboration to tackle gun and gang-related crime in the city.

  The group was recently awarded a $50,000 grant from a federal Department of Justice program. The money will be used to increase patrols in high crime areas and parole check-ins with probationers and at-risk youth. Manchester Chief David Mara says a big part of this program is showing potential offenders that they mean business.

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NH News
3:10 pm
Mon December 8, 2014

Gas Prices Fall Again, N.H. Average Now $2.78

Credit Rebecca Lavoie for NHPR

Gas prices in New Hampshire have fallen 4.8 cents per gallon in the past week to an average of $2.78.

Gasbuddy.com, which surveyed 875 gas stations in New Hampshire, says that's 9 cents more than the national average, which fell 6.7 cents last week to $2.69 a gallon.

Gas prices in New Hampshire are 57.5 cents per gallon lower than they were a year ago, and 20.3 cents per gallon lower than a month ago.

The national average decreased 25.4 cents per gallon in the last month and is 57.2 cents a gallon less compared to a year ago.

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NH News
3:06 pm
Mon December 8, 2014

Outgoing Transportation Commissioner: Fixing Highway Fund Should Be A Priority

Credit Bev Norton via Flickr CC

Outgoing Department of Transportation Commissioner Chris Clement says fixing a long-standing deficit in the state's highway fund should be a critical priority for lawmakers this session in order to keep roads and bridges safe for drivers.

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NH News
7:06 am
Mon December 8, 2014

Ralph Baer, Inventor Of First Home Video Games, Passes Away At 92

Ralph Baer
Credit Courtesy of Ralph Baer

A man known as the father of the video game died at his Manchester home over the weekend.

Family members say Ralph Baer passed away Saturday.

He was 92 years old.

Baer was credited with creating the videogame console industry in the 1960s while working as an engineer in New Hampshire.

Baer held the rights to more than 150 patents, and among his inventions included the popular game Simon.

He was awarded the National Medal of Technology in 2006.

And in 2010, he was admitted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame.

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NH News
6:51 am
Mon December 8, 2014

Manchester Police Say Program Curbing Gang Violence In City

Chief David Mara
Credit Manchester Police Department

Police in Manchester say an initiative launched this summer has helped to curb gang violence and gun-related crimes in the state’s largest city.

Officials from the department are scheduled to hold a press conference later today to discuss their efforts.

The department says the program led to the prosecution last week of a gang-related crime.

The program, titled “Awareness, Deterrence, and Outreach,” received initial funding through the United States Attorney’s Office-Project Safe Neighborhood Initiative.

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NH News
9:16 am
Sun December 7, 2014

N.H. Fish And Game Seeks Volunteer Fishing Instructors

Credit U.S. Dept. of Agriculture via Flickr CC

The New Hampshire Department of Fish and Game's "Let's Go Fishing" program is seeking volunteer instructors to teach ice fishing, fly fishing or basic fishing to youth and adults.

Those interested are required to take free training sessions to become certified as an instructor.

Volunteers need to take an overview training session and at least one specialty training class. The sessions cover ethics, pond ecology, rules and regulations, and equipment and safety.

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NH News
9:11 am
Sun December 7, 2014

Plymouth State Forges Partnership With Local Agency On Sexual Assault Awareness

Credit Via Plymouth State web site

Plymouth State University is working with a local crisis intervention agency to raise awareness about sexual assault.

The university is partnering with Voices Against Violence to create a bystander intervention policy to help prevent sexual violence and provide support to victims. Similar to programs at the University of New Hampshire and elsewhere, the bystander policy encourages students to safely intervene when they see a risk of danger.

Meg Kennedy-Dugan, director of Voices Against Violence, says her organization will provide resources to students, faculty and staff.

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NH News
5:30 pm
Fri December 5, 2014

FairPoint Strikers Rally In Portsmouth On 50th Day Of Strike

Credit Emily Corwin / NHPR

  Standing in Market Square Friday afternoon, you could hear a hoarse striker’s voice cracking as he chanted along to “what do we want?” “A contract.” “When do we want it?” “Now.”

About 100 striking FairPoint workers were rallying  to mark the 50th day of the strike. These unionized telecommunications workers haven’t seen a paycheck since they walked off the job in October. Many have spent the time attending rallies as far away as Montpelier, Vermont and Portland, Maine.

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