MacDonald: Signs letter

New Hampshire Attorney General Gordon J. MacDonald announced that he, along with attorneys general from thirty one states and the District of Columbia, has signed a letter to Equifax requesting it disable links for enrollment into its fee-based monitoring services in wake of the massive data breach which saw the personal date of one hundred forty three million people stolen from its databases.  Equifax is offering free credit monitoring services in response to the breach, but, in the letter, the attorneys general object to Equifax, quote:

“seemingly using its own data breach as an opportunity to sell services to breach victims…We believe continuing to offer consumers a fee-based service in addition to Equifax’s free monitoring services will serve to only confuse consumers who are already struggling to make decisions on how to best protect themselves in the wake of this massive breach.”

Has questions to answer

The attorneys general also wrote that, although Equifax has waived credit freeze fees for breach victims, the other two credit bureaus, Experian and Transunion, have not and that Equifax should reimburse consumers who incur these fees to completely freeze their credit.

In the letter, which was sent last Friday, the attorneys general requested information about the circumstances that led to the breach, the reasons for the months-long delay between the breach and the company’s public disclosure, what protections the company had in place at the time of
the breach and how the company intends to protect consumers affected by the breach.  They have also communicated concerns to Equifax  about terms of their free credit monitoring service and the prominence of service enrollment information on Equifax’s Web page.

MacDonald urged consumers to monitor their credit reports, bank accounts and credit card statements and to report any suspicious activity immediately.  We’ve uploaded the letter for your review.

News from our own backyard continues after this.

South End residents push board on rezoning vote

Residents in South Manchester are doing their best to make it hard for the Board of Mayor and Aldermen to ignore their opposition to a rezoning petition that will enable the construction of up to two hundred high density rental units along South Mammoth Road.  Current zoning would allow for the construction of about two dozen single family homes.

Frustrated, angry, pleading area residents have flooded multiple public hearings and board meetings to oppose the project, but the process has made it through all but the final approval with little expressed opposition on the board.  Now, the opponents have gained enough signatures from abutters within one hundred feet of the project to file a Protest Petition against the project.  As a result, proponents will have to muster ten votes, or two thirds of the board, to approve the rezoning request.

Ludiwg: Rezoning for South End, but not his neighborhood

Despite the petition, aldermen on the Committee on Accounts, Enrollment and Revenue Administration voted in favor of the rezoning last night.  Those in favor were at-Large Alderman and Committee Chair Joe Kelly Levasseur, Ward Twelve Alderman Keith Hirschmann and Ward Two Alderman Ron Ludwig, who, himself, fought off a rezoning request on Wellington Hill not all that long ago.  Opposed to the rezoning were Ward Five Alderman Tony Sapienza and Ward Eight Alderman Tom Katsiantonis, who represents the neighborhood.  Katsiantonis made a personal appeal to his colleagues saying he hoped he would have the support of aldermen who he’s supported on ward their ward issues in the past.  We’ll see about that.

MSD: Releases benefit takers

The Manchester School District has finally released the names of school board members who take the district’s taxpayer provided health and or dental insurance benefits.  The release was prompted by a Right to Know request from former Hooksett School Board Member John Lyscars, who said he objected to his town’s tax dollars paying for board member benefits rather than things students needed in their classrooms.  

Lyscars: Gets names with a little help from a friend

School board members taking both the health and dental benefits are:

  • Sarah Ambrogi of Ward One,
  • Leslie Want of Ward Four,
  • Dan Bergeron of Ward Six,
  • Erika Connors of Ward Eight and
  • John Avard of Ward Ten.  

Taking the dental benefits are:

  • Mary Georges of Ward Three,
  • Kate Desrochers of Ward Eleven and
  • Connie Van Houten of Ward Twelve.  

The annual premium cost to the taxpayers for these eight folks is over one hundred eight thousand dollars.  We’ve linked to the complete article we published on our Web site yesterday.  It gives all the details.

Manchester Primary Day is today

It’s Primary Day in the Queen City.  Voters will go to the polls to choose the final contestants for November’s General Election in the races for mayor, alderman, school board and ward offices today.  Here’s a rundown of today’s primary contests.

In Ward One:

Cavanaugh: How close will it be?

Voters will choose between:

  • Incumbent Alderman Kevin Cavanaugh,
  • former school board member Christopher Stewart and
  • newcomer Jeff Nyhan.

Martineau: Will he top the ticket again

In Ward Two:

Votes have five choices for alderman:  

  • Welfare Commissioner Paul Martineau,
  • former school board member Bob O’Sullivan,
  • Timberlane Teachers Association President Ryan Richmann,
  • former chamber executive Will Stewart and
  • restaurateur Tom Svolentopolous.

Mathieu: Saving grand-mama’s house

In Ward Four:  

  • Incumbent Alderman Christopherthrow grand-mama out of her homeHerbert faces a rematch with
  • financial services professional Steve Mathieu and
  • newcomer Jason Hodgen.

Moreau: Worked the ward

In Ward Six:  The race for alderman for both the November election and to fill the vacancy created by the resignation of Alderman Nick Pappas, voters will choose between three newcomers:  

  • Elizabeth Ann Moreau, a veteran and immigration official, restaurant manager
  • Peter Macone and
  • cleaning company owner Ryan Van Orden.  

There will be two ballots in Ward Six today, which will vote at McLaughlin Middle School for the first time.  One will be for the special election, the other will be for the primary, so be sure to cast both.

DiPietro: Targets board discord

In the race for school board, incumbent

  • Dan Bergeron faces political
  • newcomer and I T business owner Jon DiPietro and
  • Democrat Ernesto Pinder.

Shea: Will he lead the pack again?

In Ward Seven:  

  • Longtime Alderman Bill Shea is opposed by
  • Brian Cole and
  • Brenda Noiseux.

Sapienza: Will the door to door pay off?

In Ward Eight:

  • Former Alderman Betsy DeVries is looking to make a comeback against
  • Ed Sapienza, a retired corrections officer who ran two years ago,
  • and business owner John Cataldo.

Ricker: Will the outsider surprise?

In Ward Nine:

  • Former Fire Chief James Burkush is looking to unseat
  • incumbent Barbara Shaw.  
  • Newcomer Michael Ricker is in the race as well.

Ouellette: Will it be close?

In Ward Eleven, voters will consider:

  • Incumbent Alderman Normand Gamache,
  • former Alderman and School Board Member Russ Ouellette,
  • former Ward Twelve Alderman Armand Forest, and
  • Andre Rosa

for alderman.

Hirschmann: Will his vote come out?

In Ward Twelve, it’s:

  • Alderman Keith Hirschmann versus
  • State Rep. Joel Elber, versus
  • college student Hassan Essa, versus
  • Jonathan Barrett.  

Van Houten: How will she place?

For school board:  

  • Incumbent Connie Van Houten faces
  • former State Rep. Carlos Gonzalez and
  • newcomer Kelly Ann Thomas.

Gatsas: Turnout is key.

And for mayor, the question is who will finish first, Mayor Ted Gatsas or challenger Joyce Craig, as Joshua Dallaire and Glenn RJ Ouellette are non factors in the race.  We’ll keep an eye on it to be sure with full analysis tomorrow and over the rest of the week.

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