Governor Margaret Wood Hassan has fired back at Republican legislative leaders over the House’s failure to pass S B 4 8 5, which would have provided one point five million dollars in grants to local law enforcement to expand the Granite Hammer program to interdict drugs and put dealers away statewide.
Yesterday, G O P leaders faulted Hassan for her politically induced absenteeism, saying her absence enabled Democratic legislators to oppose the bill. In response, Hassan issued a statement saying quote
“Our law enforcement and first responders need help urgently, which is why I asked the legislature to act on this measure during a special session in November. Instead, the legislature delayed acting for months, and attached a controversial and unrelated measure to this critically important bill. In this case, the legislature put political games ahead of the health and safety of the people of New Hampshire, and I will begin exploring all other options to move forward this important effort to support law enforcement, which had received broad bipartisan support.”
The unrelated measure to which the governor is referring is an amendment to the bill that would have retirees covered by the state pension system chip in a small portion of their health insurance premiums to help close the yawning shortfall in the program. Hassan has called on the General Court to bring Granite Hammer up for another vote.
The New Hampshire Senate adopted the Committee of Conference report on Senate Bill 3 2 4. The bill limits the amount of land that the federal government can acquire in the state. Bill sponsor Senator Kevin Avard, Republican from Nashua, said that placing this restriction on the federal government will provide increased protection for property owners and ensure protection of the state’s land resources in the future. Avard urged Governor Hassan to sign this bill into law.
Speaker of the United States House of Representatives Paul Ryan seems to have finally figured out that holding off on endorsing Donald Trump for President isn’t bright. He gave up the ghost and endorsed him yesterday. ‘Nuff said.
News from our own backyard continues after this.
Chaos and confusion reigned in Manchester’s South End yesterday as Memorial High School was locked down and the neighboring School of Technology, Southside Middle School and Jewett Street Elementary School were placed in secure status. The story goes something like this. Around ten fifteen, students and or a teacher walking to the School of Technology saw a car drive down Weston Road with occupants seen pointing a gun at other students walking along Weston Rd. As it turns out that the vehicle’s occupants were students with paint ball guns. The kids they pointed them at were friends of theirs.
The car turned into the upper parking lot at Memorial where the vehicle occupants were seen exiting the vehicle with the paintball guns, which they put in the trunk of the car, while talking to the friends they were seen aiming at on Weston Rd. While there are conflicting published reports from school officials about who said what to whom, Memorial was locked down at ten twenty. Starting at around 10:30, Girard at Large received communications from inside the school and those who knew people in the school about the school being locked down because there was a student with a gun inside. Superintendent Debra Livingston would only confirm the lock down when called between ten thrity six and ten forty. The Manchester Police Department did not respond to requests for information. The public wasn’t notified of the lock down until around 11.
Sources tell Girard at Large that officials kept the school in lock down until about Noon, despite knowing there was no threat against the school or students within the first half an hour. One student was arrested over the incident and charges are pending.
The Manchester Historic Association is hosting a special walking tour of the Amoskeag Millyard tomorrow. The tour begins at ten in the morning and goes until noon. It will be led by Professor Robert Perreault. You’ll hear the “stories of thousands of immigrants from a colorful patchwork of countries who made the transition from an agrarian to an industrial society as mill operatives who both changed the city and were changed by it.” The event is five dollars for association members and ten dollars for the general public. Pre-registration is required, so be sure to call 6 2 2 7 5 3 1 if you’re interested. The group will meet at the Millyard Museum.
A family in Derry lost their home on 2 Redfield Circle to a fire yesterday afternoon. The fire prompted the response of forty-five firefighters from the surrounding towns of Auburn, Chester, Londonderry, Windham, Hampstead, Salem, Sandown, and Raymond. Other cities offered help to cover stations including Nashua, Manchester, Hudson and Plaistow. No one was injured, however, the house is uninhabitable. The smoke, water and fire damage destroyed almost all of the objects inside of the house. The family, an adult couple with two school aged children, is being helped by American Red Cross Disaster Services. The cause of the fire is under investigation, but preliminary cause points to it being an accident from the exterior right side of the home.
That’s news from our own backyard, Girard at Large hour ___ is next.