03-21-2014 News

The New Hampshire House of Representatives was in session again yesterday.  Given what we’re about to tell you, we’re wondering whether being in session twice this week isn’t more than twice as bad.  First, for those of you who enjoy watching paint dry, you’re going to have to pay more for the privilege.  Democrats in the house passed a seventy five cent per gallon retail sales tax on paint on a vote of one hundred sixty one to one hundred forty two.  Among the provisions of the bill is one that would prohibit paint manufacturers who don’t participate in the new paint disposal program set up by this bill would be barred from selling their paint in the state.  Republicans howled not only at the imposition of a new tax that would favor big box stores over local businesses, but also at what they believe would be violations of federal anti-trust laws.  Representative John O’Connor, Republican of Derry,  said major legal issues remain over the bill.  Representative Russ Ober, Republican of Hudson, cried foul charging an amendment to the the bill that should have had a public hearing before the Ways and Means Committee, which by House rules is supposed to hear all bills involving taxes and fees, didn’t.

Yesterday, we told you that the House voted to reopen the budget and spend surplus funds from the prior state budget.  Well, that wasn’t good enough for those who now want to tax paint as the House yesterday also voted to reopen the current budget to spend surplus funds from the current budget that don’t actually exist yet.  That, my friends, isn’t just a spending problem, it’s a stupid problem as the state won’t know if there is any surplus to spend until the budget expires on June thirtieth two thousand and FIFTEEN.  So, as if spending the prior budget’s surplus instead of replenishing the state’s all but completely evaporated Rainy Day Fund isn’t bad enough, they want to spend surpluses they don’t actually have.  That bill passed on a vote of one hundred seventy three to one hundred twenty five.

You know, it’s probably a good thing for Senator Jeanne Shaheen, Tax & Spend Machine, that things in Concord went of the rails yesterday.  Doesn’t leave us any time to tell you Shaheenhow President Barry called her a great senator in an interview with N E C N yesterday while endorsing her reelection.  Gotta hand it to our state’s Health Care Queen, though.  She earned it having literally voted with the prez ninety nine percent of the time in the current session.

News from our own backyard continues after this.

Load limits have been posted all around town in Goffstown.  A bulletin published by the Goffstown Police Department advised of the postings saying state law requires such action during the spring thaw to protect the roads.  Vehicles in excess of the posted weights are prohibited from traveling on those specific roads.  Officials expect the posted weight limits to be in force for the next four weeks.

The Manchester Police Department will be hosting its 23rd Citizens Police Academy. The class is scheduled to begin April 16th.  All classes will be held on Wednesday evenings from six to eight at Manchester Police Department headquarters.  The Academy is a nine week program designed to inform residents about the department’s role in the community.  Upon acceptance, expect an informative session examining different aspects of police work in Manchester.  You will be exposed to the glamor and excitement you associate with police work, along with the processes that are less glamorous but vital to the day to day operations of this agency.  There is no fee and interested citizens will have to fill out a brief application and a go through background check.  If interested visit Manchester P  D dot com or pop into the station.

The recount in the Hooksett School Board race between winner Amy Boilard and loser Jack Sweeney will be held tomorrow morning in the Hooksett Public Library starting at nine.  Boilard posted a slim seven vote margin over Sweeney in the election that shook the town’s political Earth.

An interesting test is on its way to classrooms in Bedford.  The test is not an academic test, but one that quizzes kids about their home and family lives, personal habits, views on their neighbors and communities and their attitudes and feelings on a variety of topics.  Parents of third and fourth graders must opt their children into the test.  Parents of children in the Tim Mayesfifth through twelfth grades may opt their children out if they so choose.  The test, which is scheduled to be given to students beginning on March thirty first, will not be given to students below the third grade.   Girard at Large obtained a copy of the test via a Right to Know request after listeners forwarded a letter to parents from building principals advising of the pending test.  Bedford Superintendent Tim Mayes said the test, called the Developmental Asset Survey, has been used in town for sixteen years in grades six through eight and is used to ensure the district is meeting its mission to quote “develop a community of learners who are intellectually curious, resourceful, and respectful of self and others.”  Mayes told us that, despite the paperwork having a name line, students will not be asked to give their names and that the only information collected will be demographic such as their school, gender, grade level and ethnicity.  We’ll share some of the questions during this morning’s show.

That’s news from our own backyard, Girard at Large hour ___ starts right now!