Looks like Senator Jeanne Shaheen, Health Care Queen, is having second thoughts about a travel ban to and from the African nations that are Ebola hot beds. Shaheen, who only last week said she didn’t think a travel ban made sense, yesterday said she’d consider imposing one if it would work. I guess Nigeria being declared Ebola-free after shutting its borders down isn’t evidence enough for her Health Care Highness. Anyway, you can imagine that got state G O P Chair Jennifer Horn’s juices flowing. She said she wasn’t sure if it was a letter senate rival Scott Brown sent her on Saturday or a poll that caused her to back off her opposition, but said quote “What’s revealing about Jeanne Shaheen’s flip flop on this issue is that her first instinct was to go along with President Obama in his opposition to a travel ban.”
Yesterday, Senator Kelly Ayotte joined with Republican gubernatorial candidate Walt Havenstein and prominent New Hampshire businesswomen to discuss the state’s business climate and how Havenstein’s plan can get Gov. Margaret Wood Hassan stagnant economy moving again. Havenstein has laid out a plan to develop an economic environment he says will create twenty five thousand good-paying jobs over the next two years. Walt, as they like to call him, has hammered Hassan for declaring that New Hampshire’s economy is experiencing quote un quote “great growth” growing by less than one percent over the past year. Walt said he appreciated being joined by quote “one of our nation’s champions for small business, Senator Kelly Ayotte, to highlight Maggie Hassan’s failed economic policies.”
First, random pastors not part of a lawsuit filed against the city of Houston have their personal papers subpoenaed over opposition to a “bathroom ordinance” that let’s people who “feel” like the other sex use their bathrooms. Now, a city in Idaho is ordering ordained ministers to celebrate same-sex weddings or face fines and jail time. Quoting from the article to which we’ve linked: The Idaho case involves Donald and Evelyn Knapp, both ordained ministers, who run Hitching Post Wedding Chapel. “Officials from Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, told the couple that because the city has a non-discrimination statute that includes sexual orientation and gender identity, and because the 9th U .S. Circuit Court of Appeals struck down Idaho’s constitutional amendment defining marriage as the union of a man and a woman, the couple would have to officiate at same-sex weddings in their own chapel. The non-discrimination statute applies to all “public accommodations,” and the city views the chapel as a public accommodation. On Friday, a same-sex couple asked to be married by the Knapps, and the Knapps politely declined. The Knapps now face a 180-day jail term and $1,000 fine for each day they decline to celebrate the same-sex wedding. A week of honoring their faith and declining to perform the ceremony could cost the couple three and a half years in jail and $7,000 in fines.” This, boys and girls, concludes today’s lesson on tolerance and the ability to exercise of one’s constitutionally guaranteed rights.
News from our own backyard continues after this.
Mayor Ted Gatsas‘ dream of building a solar energy facility on top of Mount Manchester, that would be the giant mound where the city’s landfill used to be, is one step closer to being realized. Aldermen on the Special Committee on Energy Contracts and Related Activities, recommended approving a Memorandum of Understanding with American Capital Energy, the company, which if grant funds are secured, will work with the city to not only develop what would be the largest facility of its kind in the state, but also to put solar panels on top of some city buildings, a move that could reduce energy consumption by at least fifteen percent. A C E was chosen after a competitive bid process seeking requests for proposal on a potential development. Gatsas has for years sought state funding from the funds distributed as a result of the Regional Green House Gas Initiative, also known as ‘Reggie,” to construct the project. A variety of funds could come into play to construct the facility, which if built in conjunction with the rooftop facilities proposed for places like the new Municipal Complex and Manchester School of Technology, could generate over three point two megawats of power. Total project cost is about eleven point two million bucks. One potential stumbling block, however, is Alderman at Large and Chairman of the Board Dan O’Neil. He wants the city and A C E to determine whether or not athletic fields could be put on top of Mount Manchester, saying the city lacks fields and that space could help solve the problem. He was inspired to ask after being at sporting events in Goffstown over the weekend. The events were held on fields that sat atop the town’s old dump. Ward 12 Alderman Keith Hirschmann, who’s gone to the top of Manchester’s mountain advised against using it for athletic fields noting its elevation and various other hazards. Undeterred, O’Neil said he wanted feedback from the contractor.
In other business, aldermen on the Lands and Buildings Committee approved a request to maintain a free standing sign on Front Street, which has taken months to get approval and otherwise hassled a potential business that want’s to use part of the old rail line for parking. Business owners say it’s doubtful they’ll get Planning Board approval for their business without the twelve spaces they’re looking for from the rail trail. Committee Chair Patrick Long was sympathetic, but worried that the city allowing the use would violate the rail trail agreement the city has requiring it be green space for recreational use, which just goes to show the folly of such things in a congested urban area. The business owners want to open a Vietnamese specialty store and or an appliance store at 6 9 6 Valley Street. Here’s a suggestion, maybe they could paint it green and allow recreational parking, if you get my drift…Oh My Head.
Police in Goffstown want residents around their rail trial to know that volunteers will be clearing and blowing leaves on Saturday from 9 to 4: 30 using power equipment. Be advised.
The New Hampshire Mega Millions jackpot for Tuesday, October, 21st, is expected to reach $200 million, with an estimated one-time cash payout option of $122.6 million. (Estimated jackpot amounts are before taxes.) Mega Millions tickets cost $1 per play. Drawings are held Tuesday and Friday nights at 11:00.
That’s news from our own backyard, Girard at Large hour ___ is next.