The latest stats on the opioid epidemic were released by the Manchester Fire Department’s Emergency Medical Services Officer Christopher Hickey on Friday. In sending the info showing a continued decline in the number of overdoses and deaths, Hickey said the potency of the drugs on the street are requiring ever increasing dosages of Naloxone, also known as Narcan, to revive victims. He said emergency personnel are giving an average of just under two full doses and have routinely been giving upwards of three doses to revive victims, a development he called quote “disturbing.”
If there’s an upside to what’s hitting the streets, Hickey says it’s to be found in the numbers of people seeking help through the Safe Station initiative. Said Hickey, quote:
A lot of people who come through the Safe Station Program have been expressing their concern regarding the “stuff that’s out there” and the fact that it is SO potent is actually what has been driving them in for treatment. They don’t want to die. They take comfort in the fact that we have opened our doors at the Firehouse and that the community as a whole has been reducing the stigma of treatment and what it means to have Substance Use Disorder.
As of Friday, eleven hundred people had made a total of fifteen hundred twenty nine trips to a Manchester fire station seeking help with their addiction, since last May. Of that number, two hundred thirty seven were responsible for four hundred twenty nine of the visits. Since the initiative launched last May, people from well over one hundred New Hampshire communities and eight different states have sought assistance for their addiction. Only about a third have been Queen City residents. Also as of Friday, emergency personnel have responded to twenty eight overdose calls, including three fatalities this month. Last April, emergency personnel responded a total of seventy seven overdose scenes, including eleven fatalities.
The state of New Hampshire officially has a new attorney general. Governor Christopher Sununu spent took some time on Thursday to swear in Gordon MacDonald, his nominee who was unanimously approved by the Governor and Council at its meeting on Wednesday. Sununu nominated MacDonald following the resignation of Attorney General Joseph Foster, whose term expired on March thirty first. MacDonald’s likely to be in the office and fully engaged in his new job starting today, leaving behind his private practice as a partner at Nixon Peabody.
News from our own backyard continues after this.
The town of Auburn Budget Committee will meet on Thursday night. Aside from choosing a chair and vice chair, the committee will review budget data from the school district. According to back up materials on the agenda, they’ll be looking at an unexpected overage in the high school tuition they pay to Pinkerton Academy of over one hundred eleven thousand dollars for regular education tuition and a nearly one hundred seventy three thousand dollar overage in their special education tuition line item. The meeting starts at seven and looks like it will be held in Town Hall. We’ve got the link.
The Hooksett Town Council Health Insurance Review Sub Committee will meet tomorrow afternoon at one o’clock in the Council Chambers at Town Hall. On the agenda is a review of proposals from Anthem, via the New Hampshire Health Trust, (the organization that overcharged its customers for health insurance to subsidize its workers comp. offerings in an attempt to run other coverage providers out of business), and Cigna. Following the presentations, the committee may enter a non-public session. We’ve got the agenda link.
Derry’s Town Council will meet tomorrow night. It looks like they’re going to monkey around with the town’s signage ordinance. They’re looking to schedule a public hearing on May second to take public n put on proposed changes. Things always get ugly when signage is on the agenda. We’ve got the link, which might be worthwhile as the town’s posting at least some of the agenda materials on line now.
It’s a busy week for government meetings in the Queen City. The Board of Mayor and Aldermen will meet tomorrow night. On the agenda is deposed Lord Emperor at-Large Alderman Dan O’Neil’s request to reconsider allowing the public to vote on an amendment to the city charter that would restore the city’s school district as a department of the city. You may recall the Board of School Committee voted to send a letter requesting the aldermen not put that question to the voters. (It’ll pass if it does go on the ballot, by the way.) The aldermen may also vote to give the school district its appropriation tomorrow night. Several aldermanic committees are scheduled to meet tonight and tomorrow night as well.
The board will hold a special meeting tomorrow night at six fifteen to take public input on proposed changes to the impact fee ordinance, which assesses fees on developers for new construction to offset the cost of having to expand school and fire department services.
On the school side, the Board of School Committee will meet in special session on Wednesday to vote on a proposed realignment of the district’s feeder patterns. Tomorrow night, the Curriculum and Instruction Committee will meet to review what the elementary schools are using to teach math. That is an eye opener to be sure.
That’s NEWS from our own backyard! Girard at Large hour ___ is next!