Pittsfield NH News

January 17, 2018


 

Congratulations to Gretchen Elizabeth Hilton, who has been named to Husson University’s President’s List for the Fall 2017 semester.

 

Hilton is a sophomore who is currently enrolled in Husson’s Bachelor of Science in Healthcare Studies/Master of Science in Occupational Therapy program.

 

Students who make the President’s List must carry at least 12 graded credit hours during the semester and earn a grade point average of between 3.80 to 4.0 during the period.

 


 

Letter To The Editor

 

Select board meeting 1/9/18- Most of this week’s meeting was once again taken up with budget review. We got through the entire book and will be voting on each department, some with adjustments being proposed, next Monday, the 15th. After our vote, the budget will pass on to the Budget Committee, who will then have the final say as to what end result will go to Town Meeting. That is where anything can happen, as the will of the voters will prevail.

 

In other business, two junkyard licenses were brought before us for last year. For various reasons, they were not ready until now. We approved one and denied the other due to continued concerns that we felt had not been addressed.

 

Ted Mitchell has resigned from the Transportation Advisory Committee and the Central NH Regional Planning Commission.

 

Three local businesses have made generous donations to the Parks and Recreation basketball program, which were accepted with thanks.

 

Carl Anderson

 


 

TOPS News

 

The holidays have come and gone and we are well into January.  Have you made any personal goals for a healthier you? Do you want to shed a pound or two that you may have put on during the holidays? 

 

If so, we would love to have you visit our TOPS chapter. TOPS stands for Take Off Pounds Sensibly. We hold weekly meetings on Tuesdays at 6:30 at Joy Church, 55 Barnstead Rd., Pittsfield.

 

We share ideas for healthy food choices through sharing articles or programs focusing on a particular topic. Members are very supportive to other members as we work toward our goals. For questions, call Pat 435-5333 or Beth 435-7397.

 


 

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Everyone at the Pittsfield Youth Workshop wants to thank Eddie Couturier from Hey Eddie’s Thrift Shop for donating this beautiful Foosball table, we love it!

 


 

Letter To The Editor

 

Dear Editor,

The following context is located within a business update from a local selectman in the January 3rd edition of The Suncook Valley Sun:

 

“We received a letter from NH Lottery regarding a presentation for KENO which can be adopted by individual towns. We are hoping for a public hearing in early February. It is our feeling that KENO should be decided by the voters in March. A percentage would go to education on our local level, which we could certainly use.”

 

Upon closer research it is clear that (after years of debate) our lawmakers have voted to allow KENO (gambling) in retail businesses that sell alcohol, of course in the name of the kindergarten bill (“Keno-Garten”). If you want to see the new law, it can be found buried within NH RSA 284 (Horse and Dog Racing) 41-51. 

 

Agency staff is soliciting municipalities to get on board. We citizens will be posed with the question at Town Meeting, do we want to allow such “gaming” in our community. I would urge you to vote no on this article in March. According to the North American Foundation for Gambling Addiction, the U.S.A is in the top list of countries, where a huge part of the population (2.6% or almost 10 million people) has an addiction problem because of gambling. Overall, compulsive betting behavior costs about 6 billion dollars per year for U.S. economics. We have an overabundance of poverty, addiction and other domestic issues we are continually working to overcome in Pittsfield. Why add insult to injury? The end will never justify the means and will probably end up costing us more money in the long run for intervention programs.

 

“A man with an evil eye hastens after riches, And does not consider that poverty will come upon him.” Proverbs 28:22

 

Respectfully,

Linda Small

Pittsfield

 


 

Letter To The Editor

Time to Pay the Piper

 

We are now an SB2 town, along with many others in our state. So now what?

 

Well it’s not that complicated. It is a form of town meeting that has two sessions instead of the one. Session 1 is a discussion, debate, explain and amend the articles meeting. Session 2 following 30 days later is the time to vote on the official ballot. All registered voters may vote. 

 

Voting takes place from 7AM to 7PM or by absentee ballot at the town hall. The 30 days gives time to learn about the issues so voting can be done in an informed way. And voting is done in the privacy of the voting booth. Hope you can make both sessions!

 

Sharon Matras

 


 

From the Farm - Shivering Calf

Submitted By Carole Soule

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My fingers hurt. The plastic wrap on the hay bale was frozen and so were my fingers. Bruce got out of the Bobcat to help me, the one-woman ground crew, release the bale from its wrap and feed it out to the cattle. We were on day six of the arctic blast and the cattle needed food, lots of food.

 

Besides food, livestock need water to survive cold temperatures so when we aren’t feeding we’re checking water. When the temperatures stay frigid for so long even water heaters won’t work. We have to check four troughs at least three times a day and sometimes heat the water with a kerosene heater I call the “Salamander” after breaking up the ice.

 

Cattle can freeze too. I brought one shivering steer named Xander into the barn away from the wind where I duck-taped a wool horse blanket on him. Wool keeps livestock (and people) warm and wicks away moisture but despite these efforts, his temperature plummeted to 97.5; it should have been 102. Relief came when, for two hours, we heated him with the “Salamander,” the torpedo heater. His internal temperature finally rose to 103.2, an acceptable level, but I’ll continue to watch him. I check all the cattle every day, but mostly the young stock, for shivering. If a calf is shivering it needs help. Adult cattle with plenty of food and water can handle the cold, but I still check them for shivering or odd behavior. Cows that don’t show interest in food or separate themselves from the herd can be in trouble even if they are not shivering. Snow cover on a cow indicates that animal is well insulated and protected from the weather.

 

So far, except for Xander, all the cattle are coping with the cold but we’ll all be grateful for a heat wave. I’m ready for 20-degree weather, are you?

 

Carole Soule is co-owner of Miles Smith Farm, in Loudon, NH, where she raises and sells beef, pork, lamb, eggs and other local products. She can be reached at cas@milessmithfarm.com.

 


 

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Cara Marston, Pittsfield Town Administrator accepted an Eversource rebate check in the amount of $13,900 from Randy Perkins and Donna Keeley of Eversource Energy.  The rebate is the result of the town’s recently completed LED street light conversion, a project that was approved by the voters in 2016 and will save the town upwards of $9,000 annually on their energy costs.

 


 

Become a 4-H Mentor!

Youth Ages 10-14 Need You

 

To grow into healthy adults young people need positive adults in their lives. They need someone to trust and someone who trusts them. Someone like you. New Hampshire 4-H seeks mentors for Youth and Family with Promise, our new initiative to connect adults with youth for meaningful, positive experiences.

 

Can you commit to one hour per week of mentoring? Let’s talk! Contact Laurie Field at 603-796-2151 or by email at laurie.field@unh.edu to discuss how becoming a mentor will benefit youth in your community. Learn more at: www.extension.unh.edu/YFP 

 


 

Pittsfield School District Proposed Budget for 2018-2019

Submitted By John Freeman, Superintendent of Schools

 

The Pittsfield School District proposed budget for the 2018-2019 school year reflects an increase of $517,461 and increases from the current year budget of $10,105,763 to $10,623,224 (an estimated tax rate increase of $1.50/thousand).  While this is a greater than usual Pittsfield single-year increase, the ten-year increase (since 2008-2009) has been about 7%, or about half the rate of inflation. The proposed budget includes no new programs or services to students.

 

Additional expenses in this proposed budget over the current year budget include the reinstitution of a behavior support position, the addition of a student assistance program (drug and alcohol) counselor, the replacement of two and a half positions back into the budget that are grant-funded this year (all had previously been district-funded), increased special education costs, technology equipment replacement, and modest salary increases for non-union employees. 

 

Savings in this proposed budget over the current year budget include electricity and oil savings due to energy efficiency measures and changes in suppliers, the elimination of one administrative position, the elimination of the school resource officer position, the hiring of three teachers to replace nine support staff positions, the replacement of health insurance plans in favor of a less-expensive plan, and the increase of the employee contributions to health insurance plans.

 

The district has also developed a default budget, which is the budget that would be adopted if the proposed budget were to be rejected by voters.  The default budget is intended to mirror the current year budget with certain allowable increases that include contracts and other obligations incurred or mandated by law. 

 

The default budget reflects an increase of $96,756, or an increase from the current year budget of $10,105,763 to $10,202,519 (an estimated tax rate increase of $.37/thousand).  Adoption of the default budget would effect a reduction of $420,705 from the proposed budget, 4% of the total proposed budget.

 

Additionally, the warrant will include a proposed new collective bargaining agreement between the district and the teacher bargaining unit.  The proposal represents a one-year agreement that will cost an estimated $99,885 (or an estimated tax rate increase of $.38/thousand).  Terms include a salary guide increase of 1.5%, the replacement of health insurance plans in favor of a less-expensive plan, and the increase of the employee contribution to health insurance plans.

 

In the larger picture, Pittsfield’s annual funding struggles and conflicts reflect inequities built into the state’s school funding scheme that disadvantage property-poor towns and school districts.  Although our Supreme Court mandated that the legislature fix this system back in the 1990’s, there has been no fix; voters might be interested in the non-partisan report on this critical issue at:

http://www.nhpolicy.org/report/education-finance-in-new-hampshire-headed-to-a-rural-crisis. The legislature may exacerbate this local funding crisis with the tuition bill  now under consideration in Concord:

https://reachinghighernh.org/2017/12/06/reaching-higher-nh-study-sb-193-finds-disproportionate-impact-cities-property-poor-districts/

 

Voters are strongly encouraged to join the deliberative session of the annual school district meeting at 7:00 p.m. on Thursday, February 8, at the Pittsfield Elementary School for explanation, discussion, debate, and amendments to the proposed operating budget and warrant articles.

 


Obituaries


 

Craig “Stubby” St. Laurent

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Craig “Stubby” St. Laurent passed away unexpectedly Wed., Jan. 10 at Concord Hospital with his family by his side.

 

Born with congenital heart disease on March 29, 1969, he was a Pittsield native and life long resident of Dowboro Rd., South Pittsfield. He graduated from Pittsfield High in 1989 where he received the Richard Brooks Memorial Award.

 

Craig survived several heart operations from birth on, but he could not be kept down. He led a full rich life and was cherished by his friends and family to whom he gave as much or more than he received.

 

An avid ox teamster and devoted spectator of both ox and horse pulling contests at fairs throughout New England, Stub was a fixture in the cattle and horse barns where he felt more at home than anywhere. His prescence was enjoyed by countless competitors which were his extended family. During the winter he loved watching tapes of the past years pulling contests and talking on the phone with friends. Once in a while he’d squeeze in a John Wayne tape.

 

At home Craig had a flourishing pig business, raising and selling hogs, and he took great care of the many broods of piglets that were born in his barn. Animals and people were his joy and his life was full on both counts.

 

Craig leaves his mother, Pam St. Laurent, his father, Raymond St. Laurent, aunts, Loretta Emerson, Jean Brown, and Virgie Locke, and uncle Arthur St. Laurent, all of Pittsfield; little brother, Daniel, and wife, Linda, nephew, Dan Jr., and niece, Diana St. Laurent, and aunt, Sylvia Locke, all of Barnstead; aunt, Muriel Warburton, of Gilmanton; uncle, Dale St. Laurent, of Chichester, and many cousins in Barnstead, Loudon, Concord, Manchester and North Haverhill, NH.

 

He was predeceased by his maternal grandparents Ralph and Ruth Emerson, of Barnstead and his paternal grandparents Edgar and Betty St. Laurent of Pittsfield, to whom he was a devoted caregiver for many years.

 

A celebration of Craig’s life will be held Sat., Jan. 20 at the Pittsfield High School auditorium, 23 Oneida St. Pittsfield, 03263 between 1 and 4 PM. Craig’s friends from far and wide are welcome at this informal gathering to do what he loved best- reminisce with friends.

 

Donations can be made in his name to Boston Children’s Hospital, Dept. of Cardiology- Michael Landzberg, MD, 300 Longwood Av., Boston, Ma. 02115

 

Arrangements by Still Oaks Funeral Home, Epsom. Condolences can be expressed at www.stilloaks.com.

 


 

James Elliott Derosier Sr.

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PITTSFIELD - James Elliott Derosier Sr., 71, of Pittsfield, NH passed away Saturday, January 6, 2018.  He was born in Concord and lived in Pittsfield for over 40 years.  He worked as a meat cutter in the Concord area for 30 years and was an evening manager for Bell Brothers Convenience Store for over 20 years.  

 

He was involved in the Pittsfield Youth Baseball Association for several years.  An avid animal lover he enjoyed taking his dogs for long rides in his truck.  Fishing was a hobby for years.  He liked to spend time working around the house and being with his family.

 

Members of his family include his wife of 53 years, Susan; his children, James Derosier, Jr. and his wife, Stephanie of Belmont, Darlene Conte of Penacook; Lisa Clark and her husband, Kevin of Pittsfield; James Thomas Derosier and his wife, Jessica of Epping and Crystal Hutchinson of Vermont; a sister, Nancy Young and husband, Alan of FL; 16 grandchildren and 3 great-grandchildren.

 

James was predeceased by a brother, Dale Derosier and a sister, Sally Jellerson.

 

A graveside service will be held in the spring at the convenience of the family.

 

In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be made to the Pope Memorial SPCA in Concord, NH.

 

Arrangements are entrusted to the Bennett Funeral Home of Concord. Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at https://www.BennettFuneral.com for the Derosier family.

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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