August’s surge of overdoses in the Queen City pushed the year to date total past last year’s at this time for the first time this year.  The eighty two suspected overdoses brought the year to date total to five hundred forty seven, which is thirteen more, or two point four percent higher, than this time last year.  Despite the surge in overdoses for the month and the growing number of overdoses overall, the number of fatalities has plunged.  There were three in August, bringing the year to date total to forty two, twenty six fewer than year to date last year, a reduction of thirty eight percent.

Safe Station: Numbers rising still

Manchester’s Safe Station initiative continues to channel addicts towards treatment and recovery on a rapidly growing scale.  As of August thirty first, one thousand five hundred forty eight people from more than one hundred twenty New Hampshire communities and fifteen states had made at least one visit to a Manchester fire station seeking treatment.  Of that number, three hundred fifty seven made more than one visit, accounting for six hundred eighty of the two thousand two hundred twenty eight visits made since the program began in May, two thousand sixteen. 

Gatsas: Looking for resident communities, state to offset costs

Manchester residents account for just over forty percent of those who’ve come through the city’s Safe Station program.  That fact prompted Mayor Ted Gatsas to say the city’s looking for ways to recover the cost providing services to out of town residents from the communities they came from during his interview here on Girard at Large last Wednesday.  In that interview, Gatsas said Safe Station had cost the city about three point two million dollars.  Gatsas also said he was having discussions with various state officials on the issue.

For the curious, the fifteen states from which people have come to walk through the doors of a Manchester fire station are:  Maine, Massachusetts, Vermont, Connecticut, Alabama, Arizona, Nevada, Oregon, Kentucky, Florida, Pennsylvania, New York, South Carolina, Washington and Tennessee.

Crime Wave Continues

While the opioid epidemic rages in Manchester and across the state, the Candia Crime Wave continues to catapult the tiny town into the headlines.  Candia’s cops issued one hundred fifty motor vehicle warnings and five summonses last month.  They also arrested five folks on charges ranging from Driving After Suspension, Negligent Driving, Unsworn Falsification, Driving Under the Influence and Transporting Alcohol.  They also picked up thirty one year old Jonathan Bodwell of Manchester on an outstanding arrest warrant for Robbery from the Manchester Police Department.

MPD Chief Willard: He wants YOU to be a police officer!

Speaking of the Manchester Police Department, it will host an entry-level police exam on Saturday, September 16th at the New Hampshire Police Academy in Concord.  The application process will close a week from today on Monday, September 11th.  Information and an application can be obtained by visiting manchester p d dot com.  Please contact Officer Carl Accorto in the Training Division with any questions at 7 9 2 5 4 5 2.  Since I’ve promised to take the exam, I guess I’d better take a look and get my application in!

News from our own backyard continues after this.

The Most Reverend Peter A. Libasci, Bishop of Manchester, announced the appointment of Ms. Bevin C. Kennedy to serve as the Diocese of Manchester’s new Cabinet Secretary for Development and Communications.  Kennedy joined the diocesan staff on August 28.

Kennedy: Fills critical position

In a statement issued Friday, Libasci said Kennedy will, quote:  

“play a key role in helping us to provide the material and financial resources that our diocese needs to do the work entrusted to it by the Lord.”

Kennedy’s primary role will be to provide leadership for fund-raising, stewardship, and communications support to parishes, schools and other Catholic organizations throughout the state.

Kennedy comes to the diocese from the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, where she served as Assistant Director of Promotions for National Collections for five years.  Prior to that, she worked in communications and relationship management for the Public Relations Journal, Boston University and the Council of Chief State School Officers.  Kennedy is a native of the Monadnock Region.

Local gub’ments announce service stoppages

It’s Labor Day and you know what that means.  Very few are going to work today.  We’ve received notices from various communities about government office closures, including trash transfer stations. 

In Manchester, there will be no trash or recycling collection today.  Resident’s whose collection day is today should place their items for pick up tomorrow.  All other residents should put their items out on their normal collection day but may experience delays of up to 24 hours.

In Hooksett, the Recycling and Transfer facility was closed on Saturday and will remain closed until tomorrow.   Town officials say both today’s and Tuesday’s trash and recycling will be collected tomorrow and that residents should expect delays between the trash and recycling and may call 6 6 9 5 1 9 8 if assistance is required. 

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