Morse: President again, appoints committees

State Senator Chuck Morse, Republican from Salem, was re-elected with a unanimous vote to serve again as Senate President in the new Legislative Session.  Following the vote, Morse thanked his colleagues  and announced his leadership team.  Senator Sharon Carson, Republican from Londonderry, will serve as Senate Pro Tempore, Senator Jeb Bradley, Republican from Wolfeboro, will continue as Majority Leader.  Several senators in our listening area fared well in committee assignments.  Gary Daniels, Republican from Milford, will chair Finance.  Andy Sanborn, Republican of Bedford, will chair Ways and Means.  Regina Birdsell, Republican from Hampstead, will chair Transportation and Election Law and Internal Affairs.  Carson will chair Judiciary and Executive Departments and Administration.  John Reagan, Republican of Deerfield will chair Education, and Casino Lou D’Allesandro, Democrat from Manchester, will chair Capital Budget.

Deerfield docs: Where’s the beef?

School officials in Deerfield are coming under fire for failing to provide adequate budget information.  Citizen watchdog Kevin Verville alerted Girard at Large to presentations made by town and school officials to the Municipal Budget Committee.  With a picture that says it all, Verville wrote, quote:  

The Town of Deerfield presents a budget of less than $4 million dollars with enough back up information to fill a 2″ 3-ring binder.  Tonight the Deerfield School Board presented a budget of $13 million dollars on less than five pages with zero back up.  This is an unprecedented lack of transparency and information, and an insult to the taxpayers of Deerfield and the Municipal Budget Committee.

We’ll see if we can get our hands on the school budget to see what they’re providing.

Chiafery: Bare bones budget

The Merrimack School Board received the budget proposed by Superintendent Marge Chiafery at its meeting last night.  Her nearly seventy point nine million dollar budget is up about one point four million dollars over the current budget; an increase of just over one point nine percent.  Chiafery basically said it was a bare bones budget designed to maintain current services.

Expect smoke

The Bureau of Fire Prevention in Derry will be filming public education videos at 106 Old Chester Road today.  Smoke will be visible in the area.  Please do not be alarmed.

News from our own backyard continues after this.

Quote: 

I’m a bit concerned that we don’t have great supporting data for the adoption, but I trust you on this.  I know you have a handle on how the board feels about things, so you know best whether or not they will balk at an annual contractual obligation of $107k.  We could pull about 20K out annually and put it in the grant, making the annual cost closer to $87K.  Let me know when you have time to strategize.

Armfield: Concerned about

That’s what Debra Armfield, Executive Director of Curriculum, Assessment & Professional Learning K-12 for the Timberlane Regional School District emailed Superintendent Earl Metzler concerning the Achieve 3000 reading program that’s come under fire by School Board member Donna Green from Sandown.  It’s among the gems she’s discovered in a Right to Know request she filed after learning Metzler’s wife worked for the company that sold the program.

Other gems include an email from a teacher who tried to alert the administration to serious drawbacks with the program including, out-of-date material and poor coverage of contemporary topical issues in this teacher’s field.  We’ve linked to Green’s blog post on the matter, where you can the all the details.  Green also said by the way that she has discovered that by signing a formal quote, the district agreed to a boilerplate contract on Achieve 3000’s website, which she’s uncertain anybody read beforehand.

SAU 19…entering pilot program

S A U 19 announced that the Goffstown and New Boston school districts’ will participate in the New Hampshire Assistive Technology Initiative.  They say the initiative is a knowledge-development, information dissemination and technical assistance project offered by the N H Department of Education Bureau of Special Education in partnership with CAST Professional Learning.  The overall goal of the initiative is increase the implementation of effective practices to address students’ assistive technology needs in education.  Regular and special education teachers, speech language providers, media and technology specialists, behavior consultants and administrators will participate in the program.

Macy’s off the PP list

Macy’s, the Christmas season’s most iconic department store, has come off 2ndVote’s list of corporations that directly fund Planned Parenthood.

Said 2ndVote Executive Director Lance Wray, quote:  

We’re constantly updating our research to portray companies in the fairest possible light.  Last week, Macy’s confirmed with us that the company no longer gives and no longer matches gifts to Planned Parenthood.

2ndVote’s Planned Parenthood Resource Page, was originally released in 2 0 1 5 with forty one companies that were found having a direct financial relationship with the abortion provider.  Four companies, AT&T, Coca-Cola, Ford and Xerox,  publicly distanced themselves from Planned Parenthood after the list was published.

No longer on naughty list

Wray said 2ndVote developed the list of Planned Parenthood’s corporate supporters so conservatives could engage these companies and, if necessary, use their shopping decisions to send a message.  Quote:   

It’s apparent that conservatives are using 2ndVote’s research to positively influence what companies like Macy’s are funding.

We’ve linked to 2ndVote’s scorepage for Macy’s and the list of companies that fund Planned Parenthood so you can take a look.

That’s NEWS from our own backyard! Girard at Large hour ___ is next