Regional News

News from everywhere *but* Central New Hampshire.

via Portsmouthwastewater.com

A group of residents in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, have sued the city, state, and federal government, saying an upgraded wastewater treatment plant under construction lacks the capacity to handle sewer needs.

The Portsmouth Herald reports the group filed the suit in federal court in Concord on Wednesday under provisions of the Clean Water Act. It also believes the Peirce Island plant is using the wrong technology because the city wanted to build it there, rather than at Pease International Tradeport.

Jason Moon for NHPR

Yesterday, a new report was released with suggestions for how Seacoast communities should prepare for the effects of climate change. The document could influence town planning and development in the region for years.

The report came from the Coastal Risk and Hazards Commission, which was created by the legislature back in 2013. It had 37-members representing Seacoast towns, state agencies, and private-sector interests.

The organization that handles refugee resettlement in Manchester says  it’s seen an uptick in volunteers there over the course of the presidential campaign season.  

Usually, a case manager drives new refugee families to apply for things like fuel assistance.  But on Monday, a volunteer made the trip, said  Amadou Hamady, the Manchester site director of the International Institute of New England.

Courtroom One Gavel
Joe Gratz / Flickr Creative Commons

Tuesday would have marked the first day of Manchester’s new drug court, which gives drug-crime offenders struggling with addiction a chance to get treatment instead of incarceration. But, according to the Union Leader, the opening has been delayed one week, due to a lack of participants.

In June of last year, the city’s commissioners denied funding for the program.

Emily Corwin / NHPR

In Manchester, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency is partnering with state and local agencies in a new effort to curtail both the supply of illicit opioids and the demand for them.

On the demand side, the DEA program is starting young. Tuesday, students from Parker-Varney and Green Acres Elementary Schools danced to Rihanna’s “We Found Love.” Cristine Dhimos is the regional manager of the after school dance program. 

“I think one of the best things is the kids have an opportunity to be in a safe place for one hour,” she says.

  State and city officials will meet with a representative of the US Drug Enforcement Administration Tuesday in Manchester to discuss the Agency’s new strategy to address drug crimes in the city. 

Todd Bookman/NHPR

After this week’s elections, Newfields, New Hampshire is entitled to a little bit of bragging. Two of the town’s 1,700 or so residents now hold some of the highest titles in the state.

Both Senator-Elect Maggie Hassan and Governor-Elect Chris Sununu call the Seacoast community home.

On Tuesday, thousands of New Hampshire voters will fill in a bubble way down the ballot, under “County Attorney.” It's likely few will know who they are voting for. Below, are interviews with all four candidates for the two contested county attorney seats in N.H. 

Click on the menu below to see how each candidate answered  her questions. 

RELATED: What's At Stake In Rockingham And Hillsborough's County Attorney Races

On Tuesday, thousands of New Hampshire voters will fill in a bubble way down the ballot - under “County Attorney.” But who are they voting for, and what does the job entail?  Few seem to know.

Related: Read Emily Corwin's interviews with the candidates for Hillsborough and Rockingham County Attorneys.

Earlier this year, it seemed a commuter rail line could really happen for Southern New Hampshire.  

Polling had shown 74 percent of residents support it, and lawmakers were voting on whether to use $4 million in federal dollars to connect Boston’s commuter rail to Nashua and Manchester.

BBC Arts, November 6, 2015

Although you would be hard-pressed to find a palm tree or a kalua pig roast in New Hampshire, there are a plethora of ukulele opportunities in the Granite State.  The uke is a four-string member of the lute family, and originated in Hawaii in the 19th century, an adaptation of the Portuguese machete.  According to Hawaiian lore, the name means "the gift that came here”, from the Hawaiian words uku (gift or reward) and lele (to come).

Via Flickr CC / https://flic.kr/p/7MMKBg

The well serving Kingston NH’s Fire Department has tested above the state’s standard for PFOA, a water contaminant also found at the former Pease Air Force Base, and surrounding the Saint-Gobain plastics plant in Merrimack.

The state tested the Kingston Fire Department’s well water first in September. That was after the town began offering the water to residents whose wells are failing due to the drought.  This week, a second water test confirmed: Kingston’s fire department’s well is contaminated with PFOA, at a level over the state’s regulatory standard.

Scott McGilvray of Hooksett is President of NEA-New Hampshire, the state’s largest teachers union, and that’s a job he says he’ll keep if he wins a seat on the state Senate.  McGilvray says there’s no conflict of interest, because he stopped doing any lobbying work. 

Emily Corwin / NHPR

The New Hampshire internet company, Dyn, has restored services after a cyber-attack Friday morning.

The Manchester-based company provides internet infrastructure services to major internet companies including Twitter, Etsy, and CNBC.

Dyn says it began investigating the attack early Friday morning as it began to affect websites on the East coast.  Reportedly, Dyn customers including Twitter, Spotify, and Reddit were shut down or performing poorly.

By 10:30 this morning, Dyn said its services had been restored. 

Jessica Hunt for NHPR

Jim Lawrence, a Republican running for U.S. Congress from Hudson, hasn’t paid property taxes on his home for three years, according to the Concord Monitor, which reported Lawrence owes the town of Hudson $15,614 for a home valued at $289,100.

Jim Cole | Associated Press

Almost a decade after a paper mill closed in Groveton – and long after many people gave up hope of any new jobs – a Vermont company plans to open a manufacturing plant there.

NSA Industries of St. Johnsbury hopes to have its Groveton plant operating in January and will begin hiring 60 workers in the next few weeks, says CEO Jim Moroney.

The jobs will include machining, fabrication, running lasers and material handling. The firm does metal fabricating, machining and power coating and took what Moroney described as a long-term lease on 73,000 square feet.

Chris Jensen for NHPR

In 1973, twenty-somethings Grant Dowse and his wife Pegge Kirschner were coming back home to Franconia from Europe and they were in love – with flannel sheets. 

There were flannel sheets in America, but the ones they’d slept on in Europe seemed so much nicer. Higher quality.

And they came up with the idea to import them. They named the company after a hill not far from their home, which was a former sugar house that lacked running water.

Pegge’s brother, Buddy Kirschner, still marvels at it.

www.lawrenceforcongress.com

Republican candidate for Congress Jim Lawrence provided details on his business background in an interview with the Union Leader, after a report by NHPR into Lawrence’s business record. 

New Hampshire is still considered a swing state, despite a trend toward Democrats in the last few presidential elections. But when you look further down the ballot, there are relatively few districts that can still be called battlegrounds—most are reliably red or blue. One of the last ones left is a long slice of the Seacoast—State Senate District 24. NHPR’s Natasha Haverty reports on how two candidates are working to tip the scales there.


Jessica Hunt, NHPR

Jim Lawrence is running for Congress in District 2  in New Hampshire. He’s a Republican, going up against incumbent Democrat, Ann McLane Kuster. His pitch to voters relies heavily on his record as what he calls "a small business owner."  But it’s hard to get much detail on what exactly that record entails.

For the 5 percent of Vermonters who do not identify as white, finding a barber who has experience with a diversity of hair textures is challenging. But a barber contracted by Dartmouth College to cut hair for students of color is making a difference.

Dennis Amith via Flickr CC

Dartmouth College officials say a second private well near a Hanover farm where contaminated laboratory animals were buried in the 1960s and 1970s has tested positive for a toxic chemical believed to have migrated from the site.

As a rookie officer in Nashua, N.H., Sergeant Lakeisha Phelps owned a little blue sports car. “One of the troopers would stop me like every other night,” she says, laughing. Phelps worked midnight shifts, and arrived in Nashua around 11 at night.

The Manchester internet company Dyn has a new CEO. Colin Doherty is succeeding Dyn co-founder Jeremy Hitchcock. 

Dyn is an internet performance management company based in Manchester, with clients including Visa, Netflix and Twitter.

John K via Flickr CC

Two-hundred randomly selected public water customers in Merrimack will get their blood tested for PFOA. That’s the contaminant found in drinking water near the Saint-Gobain plastics plant.

Jason Moon for NHPR

For families going through a difficult time, whether financially or emotionally, it’s sometimes the simpler things that make a difference. NHPR’s Jason Moon reports on a program in Portsmouth that offers one of those simple things – a meal and a little time to relax.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

 The city of Manchester has won a $25,000 prize from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation for cultivating what the foundation calls a “culture of health.” 

Manchester is one of seven communities to receive the prize, out of nearly 200 applicants. 

Saint-George's, Manchester, NH

This weekend is Saint-George Greek Orthodox Church’s 37th annual Glendi festival in Manchester-- the church's largest fundraiser of the year. 

Glendi is the Greek word for “celebration," and the festival, which runs from Friday through Sunday, includes live music, traditional costumed dancing, and plenty of Greek food.

Frank Comerford is the president of the church’s Board of Directors, and calls himself "the Irish president of the Greek Cathedral." If he could only get one thing at the festival all weekend, Comeford says, he would get the lamb shank.

Emily Corwin / NHPR

The state will offer blood tests to a random selection of residents who use  city water in Merrimack. That’s despite the fact that public water in Merrimack is currently below the state’s enforceable threshold for PFOA contamination.

Surrounding the Saint-Gobain plastics plant in Merrimack, over 600 private wells have been tested for the chemical PFOA, and more than a third have turned up with high enough contamination to qualify for bottled water, new water infrastructure, and blood tests paid for by Saint-Gobain.

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