Burkush: Launches Safe Station in Hooksett

Hooksett Fire and Rescue Department Chief James Burkush and Captain Joseph Stalker issued a statement on Friday announcing the creation of a Safe Station program.  Citing the quote “overwhelming success of the Safe Station program in Manchester” the department says it will offer the same “valuable services.”

The program, first launched in Manchester last May, enables any person struggling with addiction to go to a fire station where they will be evaluated by medically trained staff and referred either to a hospital or treatment facility.  Since May fourth, Manchester fire stations have received nearly fourteen hundred visits from people who live in more than one hundred New Hampshire communities and eight states, including sixteen from Hooksett residents.

Success spawns successors

Burkush and Stalker said the department has partnered with Serenity Place and Catholic Medical Center to refer individuals for treatment and medical services as needed.  Starting at seven A M on Wednesday, March thirtieth, both of the town’s fire stations, located on Legends Drive and Riverside Street, will be open to those in need.

Governor Christopher Sununu took his commitment to attracting new business to Quebec yesterday, where he delivered the message that New Hampshire is open for business.

Sununu and Couillard

Yesterday, Sununu attended a reception and forum hosted by Conseil Des Relations Internationales De Montreal (CORIM) aimed at reinforcing the state’s economic ties with Quebec.  During a meet-and-greet and luncheon with Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard, Sununu delivered remarks and participated in a panel discussion on the economic relationship between Quebec and New Hampshire.   He took the opportunity to highlight New Hampshire’s talented workforce, favorable tax burden, unparalleled quality of life and cultural and historical connection with Quebec.

News from our own backyard continues after this.

Urges opposition

The New Hampshire House Health, Human Services and Elderly Affairs Committee will hold a hearing on Senate Bill 2 2 4 today at quarter of two in rooms 3 0 5 and 3 0 7 of the Legislative Office Building.  The bill bans quote “practices or treatments that seek to change an individual’s sexual orientation or gender identity,” also known as “Conversion Therapy.”

A similar bill, House Bill 5 8 7, has already been retained by the committee, preventing a House vote before 2 0 1 8. 

Opponents of the bill are urging the bill be defeated.  In an email to supporters, Cornerstone Action:

  • Said the bill would interfere in the therapist/client relationship, arguing that legislators would be troubled by that interference in other contexts should be troubled by it in this one;  
  • Pointed out that the bill doesn’t respect a client’s right to determine their goals for therapy because it would restrict the therapist’s treatment options for an adolescent client experiencing unwanted same-sex attraction;
  • Argued the bill puts patient confidentiality at risk, questioning who would determine when words chosen by a therapist crossed into the definition of “conversion therapy,” who would review patient records and determine that a therapist has or has not complied with SB 224 and the authority by which private medical records would be subject to said review.

Therapy a crime?

Cornerstone also confronted a double standard the bill would create in the law between minors who would be allowed to undergo therapy to change sexes, but not to work through unwanted same sex attraction.  Cornerstone’s statement displayed the irony of the counselor assisting in the conversion from one sex to the other being “ethical” and the one helping a patient dispel unwanted same sex attraction as “unethical.”  

Certainly makes you wonder what the real agenda with this bill is, doesn’t it?  For those who might like to share their opinion with legislators on the committee, we’ve got the link to its email address with this news read at Girard at Large dot com.

Giuda: Backs bill

The New Hampshire Senate passed Senate Bill 2 0 5, a bill which establishes a small business jobs fund and tax credit last week.  Senate Majority Leader Jeb Bradley, Republican from Wolfeboro and District Two Senator Bob Giuda, Republican from Warren, said the bill will give businesses greater access to capital and spur economic growth. 

Said Bradley, quote: 

By passing SB 205, New Hampshire will be providing an incentive for businesses to remain in New Hampshire and invest their own capital in the state.

Guida said the bill won’t only help businesses currently in the state, but will also help attract new ones.  Quote:   

Small businesses will see real economic growth from these capital investments by creating good high paying jobs which can generate additional tax revenue for New Hampshire.

Vargas: Presenting to aldermen tonight

The Manchester Board of Mayor and Aldermen will meet tonight at City Hall.  In addition to a budget presentation from School Superintendent Dr. Bolgen Vargas, the aldermen will get their first look at an overhaul of the city’s impact fee ordinance.  That’s the ordinance that assesses fees for school and fire services on new development.  

The board will also be asked to approve several budget items for the coming fiscal year, including three million in bonds needed to purchase new vehicles as part of the annual Motorized Equipment Replacement Program and another three million for the Annual Right of Way Road Reconstruction Fund.  Mayor Ted Gatsas has often pushed for early approval of these items to maximize the amount of time the city has to work on the roads and obtain new vehicles.

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