North Country

Missing In Action: Broadband In Coos County

Apr 4, 2016

About seven percent of New Hampshire’s residents don’t have access to broadband. But in Coos County that jumps to about 31 percent. That's the worst - by a narrow margin - in the state, according to a new study by the University of New Hampshire.

And much of Coos – which has about 33,000 residents – has no broadband access because the technology is typically offered in the southernmost and most populated part of the county.

North Country Events

Mar 31, 2016

CALENDAR OF EVENTS: The newsletter typically announces events in the next week. The calendar shows you events in the coming months.

The plan to spend about $2.8 million to fix 1.8 miles of Golf Links Road, which connects the now-closed hotel with the golf course, got mixed reactions at a public meeting Monday in Colebrook.

Supporters said it is important to help the Balsams because if it reopens it would be a huge boost to the economy of the North Country.

Opponents said there are many roads in the North Country that need to be fixed. Those include roads that are in terrible shape and ambulances – sometimes carrying desperately ill or injured patients - have to go very slowly.

Skier Killed In Crash At Cannon Mountain

Mar 27, 2016

A 29 year-old man from Massachusetts was killed in a skiing accident at Cannon Mountain over the weekend, according to New Hampshire Fish and Game.

Late Saturday,Trevor Hennessey of Holden Massachusetts was reported missing by his family said Lt. James Kneeland. After his vehicle was found in a parking lot, a search was started and continued through the night.

About 8 a.m. Hennessey’s body was found in the woods near the Upper Ravine Trail.

Kneeland said Hennessey missed a sharp turn and struck a tree.

The body was found about 40 feet off the trail.

In the North Country Littleton is receiving a $500,000 grant to upgrade storm drainage and sewers in its River District, the New Hampshire Community Development Finance Authority announced Friday.

The $500,000 is available through a federal Community Development Block Grant. Littleton voted recently to come up with a little over $555,000 in matching funds.

North Country Events

Mar 23, 2016

CALENDAR OF EVENTS: The newsletter typically announces events in the next week. The calendar shows you events in the coming months.

This summer the state plans to help the developers of the Balsams by spending almost $3 million to fix a 1.8 mile road at the resort.

The seasonal Golf Links Road connects the now-closed Balsams hotel and the golf course.

The road, which belongs to the state, is in bad shape. Erosion, steep slopes and wetlands will make repairs along its 1.8 miles tricky, according to the minutes of a DOT meeting in January.

Negligent Homicide Charge In The North Country

Mar 18, 2016

A Massachusetts man was arrested Friday morning and charged with negligent homicide after his passenger was killed in a crash Thursday night near Errol, according to state police.

Police said forty-nine year-old Michael Sheehan of Foxborough lost control of his pickup on Route 16 about 8:30 and struck several trees, killing forty-eight year-old Stephen Bagley of Roslindale, Massachusetts. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Voters in Groveton – which has been struggling since the paper mill there closed in 2007 and devastated its economy - took a fiscal leap of faith Saturday.

They voted to borrow up to $400,000 to put sewage and water on privately owned land in the hope that businesses will locate there – and bring tax money and jobs.

The $400,000 allows Groveton to seek another $600,000 in federal funds.

If that federal grant comes through the total of $1 million would be used to install water and sewage on the redeveloped site of the old paper mill.

Flickr/Wistech Colleges

A $340,000 program opens Friday in the North Country to introduce high school students and adults to a job they probably never knew existed: computer-controlled machining.

“There’s a dire need of CNC operators above the notch,” says Mike Currier, the manager of the Rotobec plant in Littleton. Its products include machinery for the forestry industry.

A mix of 12 Republicans and Democrats from the North Country agreed on the need to pass a bill that would continue Medicaid for the next two years.

That reflected the tone at the House on Wednesday, where HB 1696  passed 216 - 145, NHPR’s Paige Sutherland reported.

North Country Events

Mar 10, 2016

CALENDAR OF EVENTS: The newsletter typically announces events in the next week. The calendar shows you events in the coming months.

Chris Jensen for NHPR

Town meetings are being held throughout the state and this year the most important – and unusual - in the North Country is in Groveton.

Saturday, Groveton taxpayers will decide whether to spend money to help provide sewage and water for a privately owned industrial development in the hope of bringing jobs to the hard-luck town.

“This is probably the best chance the town’s got to get something going,” says Selectman Jim Tierney, Jr.

Chris Jensen for NHPR

The Ride the Wilds ATV network covers about 1,000 miles in the North Country and now a new ATV group in Jefferson is looking at getting in on the economic action.

At a meeting last week, members of the Jefferson ATV club said a link to Ride the Wilds might draw tourists to local businesses.

But club president Roy Parkhurst said the first step was seeing how residents feel about the prospect.

“It is a proposal. There is nothing written in stone here. You people are going to decide whether we have trails in the town,” he said.

North Country Events

Mar 4, 2016

CALENDAR OF EVENTS: The newsletter typically announces events in the next week. The calendar shows you events in the coming months.

Chris Jensen for NHPR

Officials in the North Country are fighting a bill that would take a tax break designed to encourage business to locate in economically troubled Coos County and offer it statewide.

In 2008, as Coos staggered from the closing of paper plants, the state approved a bill proposed by Rep. Fred King of Colebrook that would provide a tax break for business-related construction – assuming the local jurisdiction approved.

Dead Hiker Found In North Country

Feb 29, 2016
Courtesy NH Fish and Game

Update: Fish and Game officials have identified the hiker as 54-year-old Timothy Hallock of Orient New York.

A dead hiker was found Sunday on the Castle Ravine Trail between Mt. Adams and Mt. Jefferson, according to New Hampshire Fish and Game.

Two hikers found the body of a middle-aged man between Mt. Adams and Mt. Jefferson, said Lt. Wayne Saunders who notified officials.

Saunders said officers found nothing suspicious at the scene and the medical examiner will be determining the cause of death.

Plymouth State University

Plymouth State University is reorganizing its Center for Rural Partnerships to provide more resources to help communities and businesses. And it gets a name change: now it will be the Center for Business and Community Partnerships.

But the big difference is that resources from throughout the university will be available, says Donald Birx, who took over last year as president.

That help ranges from arts and technology to health and human enrichment, tourism, environment and sustainable development, Birx says.

“Now, we’ve broadened the scope immensely.”

North Country Events

Feb 25, 2016

CALENDAR OF EVENTS: The newsletter typically announces events in the next week. The calendar shows you events in the coming months.

Massachusetts Woman Injured In Snowmobile Crash

Feb 23, 2016
Chris Jensen for NHPR

 

A 45-year-old Massachusetts woman suffered serious injuries Monday afternoon when her snowmobile crashed in Pittsburg, according to New Hampshire Fish and Game.

Laura King of Danvers lost control of her snowmobile – apparently when she inadvertently accelerated - and hit some trees adjacent to the trail she was riding on.

She suffered injuries described as severe but not life threatening.

Chris Jensen for NHPR

The North Country is pinning its much of its hope for an economic boost on the effort to reopen the Balsams Resort, but a tourism official says the region should have a Plan B.

“I would really encourage the development of two strategies," says Gloria Bruce, the executive director of the Northeast Kingdom Travel and Tourism Association.

“One, in the event that the Balsams were to open, which I think would be fantastic, what does that look like, what are the outcomes, what do we need to plan for.”

Chris Jensen for NHPR

The warm winter is having a terrible impact on businesses tied to snowmobiles and logging, says Wayne Frizzell the president of the North Country Chamber of Commerce and a Colebrook native.

Balsams Site Plans Expected In Several Weeks

Feb 22, 2016
Chris Jensen for NHPR

The redevelopment of the Balsams will take another step forward soon, says Ed Brisson, an official with Dixville Capital LLC.

“In the next couple of weeks we will be coming in with ski area site plan approval as well as, we anticipate coming in with plans for renovating Dix and Hampshire House,” he said.

Those plans would go before the Coos Planning Board, which must approve them before work can begin.

"We are actually looking to put a shovel in the ground sometime this summer," he said.

He said there would be a series of applications in the coming months.

North Country Events

Feb 18, 2016

CALENDAR OF EVENTS: The newsletter typically announces events in the next week. The calendar shows you events in the coming months.

North Country Snowmobile Festival Cancelled

Feb 16, 2016

A lack of snow in the North Country has forced the cancellation of the 24th Annual SnoDeo at Coleman State Park, according to organizers.

Although many trails are open in the area, an official from the Swift Diamond Riders Snowmobile Club said it doesn’t look like enough snow will fall before March 3 and 4th to make the event  feasible.

A main feature of the event has been snowmobile test rides from four manufacturers.

It is the first cancellation since the event - which provides an economic boost to the area - began in 1993.

Fatal Snowmobile Crash In The North Country

Feb 16, 2016

A 30-year-old Seabrook man was killed Monday afternoon in a snowmobile crash near Pittsburg, according to New Hampshire Fish and Game.

Eric Tatarinowicz lost control of his snowmobile in a turn and struck a tree about five miles north of Back Lake Road, said Conservation Officer Glen Lucas.

Efforts by his companions to revive him were unsuccessful and he was pronounced dead at the scene.

North Country Events

Feb 11, 2016

CALENDAR OF EVENTS: The newsletter typically announces events in the next week. The calendar shows you events in the coming months.

"Phenomenal" Turnout In The North Country?

Feb 9, 2016
Chris Jensen for NHPR

If the voting in Bethlehem is typical it could be a very busy day at the polls in the North Country.

“The turnout has been phenomenal. People are coming out in droves," says Ellen Roy, a supervisor of the checklist. “We had so many new voters, people that have never voted before, across the board in age.”

And that was all before 1 p.m.

Chris Jensen for NHPR

At Dixville Notch the traditional midnight primary voting took less than a minute for the ballots to be cast by the four Republicans, four independents and one Democrat.

Moderator Tom Tillotson announced the results.

“On the Republican side we have for Donald J. Trump two. For John R. Kasich we have three. On the Democratic side we have four votes cast for Bernie Sanders. None for Hillary.”

The vote took place at the shuttered Balsams Resort. Most of the voters in previous years moved away after the resort closed late in 2011.

North Country Events

Feb 5, 2016

CALENDAR OF EVENTS: The newsletter typically announces events in the next week. The calendar shows you events in the coming months.

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