North Country

Britta Greene / NHPR

New Hampshire health officials decided to prioritize a specific demographic this year when allocating scarce federal funds toward the opioid epidemic: pregnant and newly post-partum women.

The choice reflects stark statistics both in New Hampshire and across the country. 

Sargent Corporation

Environmentalists are suing over alleged water pollution at a North Country landfill.

The federal lawsuit, filed Monday against landfill owner Casella, comes from the Conservation Law Foundation and Toxics Action Center.

Selbe B via Flickr CC

Coos County officials have sided with the Mount Washington Cog Railway in a dispute over a trail near the summit – but the fight is far from over.

The Coos County planning board says the Cog didn't need a permit to clear the trail on its property, as long as it's used for maintenance and recreation.

They say it will need a permit if it's ever used commercially, but it's still not clear what that means.

Chris Jensen for NHPR

A group of residents in the town of Gorham is suing to shut down a popular ATV trailhead.

Neighbors of the trail say they are fed up with the dust, noise and fumes from the four-wheelers. In their court filing, they cite an escalating number of police complaints lodged in Gorham in recent years involving ATV and OHRV riders. 

  Congresswoman Annie Kuster today applauded continued federal money for the Northern Border Regional Commission in the government funding bill. The funds supply infrastructure and economic grants to struggling communities in the Northeast.

 

Google maps

 

Town meeting voters in Bethlehem have rejected a plan to expand a North Country landfill. 

 

The Casella-owned facility serves a large part of the region and is on track to fill up by 2021. 

 

Jim McCann was one of about 600 Bethlehem residents who voted against the expansion proposal, with about 500 residents voting for it. This is the second year in a row the matter has been up for a vote.  McCann says he wants to see his small town diversify its economy, not invest in the landfill.

 

Chris Jensen, NHPR

Just a few years after opening up local roads to ATV traffic, residents of the town of Stark are debating whether to reverse course. A warrant article up for a vote at tomorrow’s town meeting would close local roads to off-road vehicles beginning in mid-April.

Courtesy Woody Little / Toxics Action Center

Environmental groups say they plan to sue a Bethlehem landfill owner for allegedly dumping contaminants into the Ammonoosuc River.

The news comes just days before a Town Meeting vote on a plan to expand the site.

Vermont-based Casella Waste Services is dismissing the threat as a political stunt.

The announcement came from two Boston-based nonprofits – the Conservation Law Foundation and the Toxics Action Center, where Woody Little is an organizer.

Cog Railway

The Coos County planning board is giving the Cog Railway more time to respond to complaints about a new trail along its tracks on Mount Washington.

The board met Wednesday night to discuss what the conservationists says is an un-permitted road near the summit.

Chris Magness is president of Keep the Whites Wild, and says the board wants to know how the railway will use the road.

Courtesy photo

Joel Storella’s “Cash Only Vintage” is about the last thing visitors to Littleton, New Hampshire expect to find while strolling along Main Street.

The quintessential New England town is known for being home to the world’s longest candy counter and the author of Pollyanna...but vintage Ralph Lauren sweatshirts and highlighter colored ski suits? Not so much. But those are just two of the many 80s and 90s gems you’ll find at Storella’s vintage clothing store.

Grant Helps North Country Kids Gear Up To Ski

Jan 22, 2018
Chris Jensen for NHPR

For years volunteers in Lancaster and Littleton have run the Mount Prospect and Mount Eustis ski slopes to give North Country kids a chance for low-cost winter fun. But one thing was missing: the kids.

Standing at the top of the newly opened Mt. Eustis last year, organizer Dave Harkless wondered why.

Sean Hurley

The tiny North Country town of Shelburne has proven a bellwether for New Hampshire politics for several years running. In many recent elections, the local vote has matched the state’s better than any other town.  

NHPR’s Sean Hurley has visited Shelburne periodically over the past two years to gauge the residents’ thoughts on politics and the new President.

North Country Greenhouse Project Delayed

Dec 11, 2017
Courtesy North Country Growers

A pair of high-tech greenhouses that were expected to bring 80 jobs to the North Country has been delayed.

North Country Growers executive Marguerite Piret described the project at a planning board meeting earlier this year.

“The acreage will be approximately 10.3 acres of salad greens and about 9.5 of tomatoes.”

That means about 8 million pounds of tomatoes and 15 million heads of lettuce a year would be grown in water blended with nutrients, Piret said. The produce would be picked fresh and delivered the next day to stores and restaurants in New England.

Chris Jensen for NHPR

A new study from the Carsey School of Public Policy at the University of New Hampshire shows people living in rural northern New Hampshire and adjacent counties in Maine and Vermont hold increasingly positive views of life there, though they also agree that the lack of job opportunities, drug abuse, and population decline are important problems.  (Scroll down to read the full research report.)

For more on the study of life in rural northern New England we turn to Larry Hamilton, professor of sociology and a senior fellow at the Carsey School. He's one of the authors of the study.

Jamelah E./Flickr

Two Berlin businesses are cancelling an Election Day-related raffle after learning the drawing violates state law.

Scene Street, a consignment shop, and Tech Pro, a computer repair store, each planned to give anyone who entered wearing an “I Voted” sticker on Election Day a raffle ticket for various prizes.

The State Attorney General, however, ordered the businesses to cancel the promotions, citing a 1973 law that prohibits using items of value to encourage a vote.

Todd Bookman/NHPR

Local economies don’t turn on a dime. When a factory town loses its factories, and workers lose their jobs, it can take decades for a community to get back on its feet.

That’s been the reality in places like Berlin and Gorham: two former paper mill towns in the North Country now trying to reinvent themselves.

Businesses, officials and residents are hoping that ATV tourism can provide a much-needed financial boost. 

Alexius Horatius/Wikimedia Commons

After years, even decades of trailing behind the rest of the state, Coos County may be headed in a better economic direction.

New numbers from the American Community Survey, which is released each year by the U.S. Census Bureau, puts the percent of people living in poverty in Coos last year at 11.7%. 

New Hampshire State Police

A 19-year-old mystery may have been solved Tuesday when authorities pulled a pickup truck out of the Androscoggin River containing what are believed to be the remains of Tony Imondi. The truck was discovered in the river a few miles south of Errol Village.

This story originally appeared in The Berlin Daily Sun.

Cori Princell

The 42nd New Hampshire Highland Games took place this weekend in Lincoln.  It’s one of the largest gatherings like it in the U.S.  NHPR’s Cori Princell attended with her family...and something of a unique perspective.  


Courtesy of U.S. Customs and Border Protection

U.S. Border Patrol agents staged a weekend checkpoint on Interstate 93 in Lincoln, New Hampshire over the weekend, resulting in the detention of 25 undocumented immigrants, including several minors.

Charlottesville Vigil Planned Up in the North Country

Aug 25, 2017
FACEBOOK

A group in the North Country will host a vigil Friday in response to the violence in Charlottesville. There will be similar events in Keene and Portsmouth on Sunday.

Courtesy of The Friendship House

By next fall, the North Country will have a new residential drug treatment facility offering 32 beds. Construction is expected to start next month.

Todd Bookman/NHPR

If you find yourself in downtown Berlin, New Hampshire, take a glance at the Androscoggin River. There, in the middle of the water, you’ll notice a long, straight line of small rocky islands poking through the surface.

Northern Border Regional Commission

New Hampshire’s northern counties have been awarded $2.2 million for local economic development projects by the Northern Border Regional Commission

Town of Stark

New Hampshire is considering establishing a new veteran's cemetery in the town of Stark.

On a 20-acre plot overgrown with brush, the cement foundations of guard towers and a few old fireplaces are the only remnants of a prisoner of war camp from World War II, New Hampshire’s only POW camp.

Officials are weighing a plan to use that land and surrounding forest as a site for the new cemetery. New Hampshire currently has one veteran's cemetery, in Boscawen, but traveling to the cemetery requires a long drive for vets and their families in the North Country.

To the uninitiated, it's the French horn — though that's a bit of a misnomer. To its players and students, it's simply a horn, an instrument that has featured in orchestras for centuries.

The horn's sound is easily recognizable thanks to the prominent role it's played in some of the most epic classical songs and movie themes. But it's still an uncommon instrument, and not the easiest one to build community around. To that end, dozens of horn players head into the woods in the White Mountains every summer to celebrate and learn more about their instrument.

Todd Bookman/NHPR

Members of the public were given their latest chance to weigh in on Northern Pass, a proposed utility transmission project that would bring hydropower from Quebec to Southern New England via New Hampshire.

Cori Princell

It's spring and farmers markets are opening around the state. In Berlin, a city that’s been through some tough economic changes, the summer farmers market has long been a bright spot of local food and community. But earlier this spring, it was looking like that farmers market might not be happening anymore.

Janis Oppliger / Unsplash

The Town of Gorham has applied to be an official Appalachian Trail Community.

The Appalachian Trail, which runs from Georgia to Maine, passes through the town of Shelburne, which is east of Gorham. Hikers often leave the trail to pick up mail and shop in Gorham.

If the application is approved, Gorham businesses could appear on the Appalachian Trail Community's official maps and website.

plymouth.edu

A new scholarship program at Plymouth State University will focus on reaching students in the North Country.

A now-deceased descendant of one of the school’s original funders donated $1.5 million to the university. The gift provides for a scholarship fund that will help up to 20 students with financial need each year. Priority will be given to students from Coos, Grafton, and Carroll Counties.

Paula Lee Hobson with Plymouth State says the donor, Ann Haggart, had a special connection with the North Country.

Pages