Well, the big news comes out of Concord where the House of Representatives voted yesterday to kill casino gambling, again. On a vote of one ninety two to one seventy two, the motion to reconsider Senate Bill Three Sixty Six, which was defeated last week by just one vote, failed. The bill would have established two casinos in the state, one at Rockingham Park, the other somewhere in the North Country. Despite the comfortable margin of victory gambling opponents failed to put the issue away for the remainder of the session as the House voted one eighty three to one seventy nine against a motion to bar the topic for the rest of the term. What that basically means is that those who want to casino-ize New Hampshire, like State Senator Casino Lou D’Allesandro, Democrat from Manchester, will likely try again, especially given the state’s budget woes. G O P Second District congressional candidate Gary Lambert issued a statement condemning the House for killing the bill.
The House also passed a bill that would ban the use of any and all electronic devices, including your G P S, while driving. The bill even says you can’t use electronic devices in a vehicle while stopped at a traffic light or stop sign or in a traffic jam. Wireless, or so called hands free use of phone and G P S devices will be allowed, except for those who have yet to turn eighteen. For them, all devices are banned at all times, except in an emergency. So, mom and dad, if you want to communicate with your kids and they’re just a passenger in someone’s car, they’ll be violating the law by taking your call. Nice. If signed by Governor Margaret Wood Hassan, who has indicated she’s likely to sign the bill, the ban wouldn’t take effect until July first of next year to educate the public about the pending law change.
A big showdown is expected in Concord today as Governor Hassan’s nomination of radical education leftist Bill Duncan, a man well known for his opposition to charter schools and scholarship programs, his support of the Common Core national standards and teachers unions and the lawsuit he has pending against the state to block privately funded scholarship programs for low income students, is before the Executive Council. Both those who support and oppose the nomination are asking their faithful to contact their councilor or the council generally to express their opinion. District Four Councilor Christopher Pappas, who is seen by many as the swing vote, told Girard at Large he’d made no decision and was keeping an open mind. He noted the several successful and popular charter schools in the city and surrounding towns he represents and said he wanted to get clarification from Duncan about his position on charter schools. Duncan had something of a nomination bed conversion on the topic. The Council convenes this morning at ten in their chambers at the State House. The meeting is open to the public and both sides are urging their adherents to attend.
News from our own backyard continues after this.
As most of us know, Hanover Street between Chestnut and Elm streets was shut down on Friday and Saturday nights last summer as a way of encouraging pedestrian traffic. The measure was not met with universal support, but a compromise was struck and the pilot program proceeded. At Tuesday’s meeting of the Manchester Board of Mayor and Aldermen, the owner of the Odd Fellows Building at number eighty three Hanover Street came forward to protest the expansion of the plan. He objected to the expansion of the plan saying there were a lot of other businesses on the block that didn’t benefit from the pilot program and won’t benefit by its expansion. He asked the board to engage and work with all the business and property owners on the street to ensure that something truly workable comes forward, not something just for the three restaurants on the block that benefit by the shutdown, which for anybody who’s been there, knows is the case.
Tuesday will be a big community outreach day for the Bedford Police Department. It starts with Coffee with a Cop and Senior Citizens Talk from seven to nine on the morning of the thirteenth at the Bedford Safety Complex on Constitution Drive and ends with Meet the Chief later that evening from six to eight, also at the safety complex. Chief John Bryfonski hosts the meeting each month. We’ve linked to the details from this newscast at Girard at Large dot com.
School officials in Goffstown are singing the praises of Goffstown High teacher Stephen Bourget. He was recently recognized by the community college system for his thirteen years of participation in the Running Start Program, which offers high school students the opportunity to take dual credit courses that give them college credits for taking certain classes while still in high school. Since two thousand one, Bourget has taught a long list of ever-evolving technology courses for both Manchester Community College and Great Bay Community College. We’ve posted the press release with details of the program and the award with this newscast at Girard at Large dot com.
That’s news from our own backyard, Girard at Large hour ___ is straight ahead!