2002 --The Year In Review
Taken from Atlantic News Staff Reports
By Claire Gillen, John Hirtle, Katy Plante
Edited by John Hirtle, Production Manager
Another year has come and gone, and it is time to take an accounting to the events that have marked the Seacoast. From the personal triumphs of outstanding souls who have worked to make the region a better place to live in, the the impersonal drought that dried out much of New England and the country. From projects long overdue such as better communications and roads to bitter rivalries and differences of opinions. This is but a brief overview of what happened on the Seacoast in 2002.
Members of the Hampton board of selectmen placed their signatures on the 2002 town warrant at their meeting, making voters the next in line to approve or reject the close to 50 warrant articles which have been examined by selectmen and budget committee members alike. Talked about as the number-one priority for passage by the majority of the selectmen, Hampton's police station will be staging yet another come back for voter support in March, with an additional $1,324,000 estimated to be needed to supplement the $5 million approved by voters two years ago.
The North Hampton board of selectmen voted to form a committee to reexamine the town's contract with cable provider AT&T Broadband at their meeting held on January 14. Selectmen Chairman Lloyd Sullivan said that North Hampton has one the highest rates in the state with the lowest service. "Many of our residents are paying exorbitant rates for basic cable," he said. Sullivan also said that every time the town gets a dialogue going with a customer service representative about establishing the services, they seem to have a change in personnel, forcing the town back to the beginning. Robert Landman, newly appointed chairman of the new committee for a term that will expire in March 2003, said that he would provide the board with an update at their next meeting.
The town of Seabrook is again looking into the possibility of making some major changes to the structure of their school system. At the selectman's meeting held on Wednesday, January 9, the board added a warrant article which asks taxpayers whether or not they would approve funding a $10,000 study into the possibility of withdrawing from the Winnacunnet Cooperative School District. "Even if we don't withdraw from the SAU, we should withdraw from Winnacunnet," said School committee member Blanche Gore-Bragg, who went on to say that Seabrook students did not stand a chance at Winnacunnet. If an attempt was ever made to leave from Winnacunnet, the withdrawal would need to be approved by the other towns in the district, and the neighboring town's taxes would subsequently increase if Seabrook ever left and as Seabrook resident, Bruce Casassa puts it, "I don't think you'd ever get it."
After more than thirty years of selfless and tireless service to the Hampton public library, Arlene Farrell of Hampton officially retired from active volunteering duties last week. On Wednesday, December 9, friends, family, library trustees, co-workers and local officials honored the esteemed volunteer at an informal celebration held in the New Hampshire Room of the library. Farrell was always eager to take on new projects and cover shifts for other employees. Even now she is looking forward to lend a helping hand whenever she can. "I am wondering if I can't put in a little time here and there to help them get caught up," she says.
At a special meeting of the Board of Selectmen, A public hearing about proposed plans for North Hampton's municipal complex was held. The plans were drafted by architect Dennis Mires, P.A., of The Architects. Mires was hired last year after a 2001 warrant article authorizing the hiring of an architect was approved. "We were asked to take a look at expanding the town complex," Mires said. The town complex includes the library, town offices, fire and police stations, public works building and town hall. Mire said that North Hampton's master plan committee endorsed his plan. The plan, if supported by the town, would be completed over six to seven years. The warrant article will be put to voters in March.
At a citizen's budget briefing held January 10, North Hampton School Board Chairman Kim Kisner presented the proposed 2002-2003 budget which totals $5,974,611, along with six warrant articles that will be put before voters in March. North Hampton residents will be asked to voted upon increases in salaries and benefit for teachers and other school personnel, whether to appropriate money for technology equipment and whether to appropriate $150,000 to buy land adjacent to the school for additional athletic fields, off-street parking, and possible school expansion.
Hampton resident Charlie Preston appeared before selectmen in an attempt to get answers from the state on parking meter revenue at Hampton Beach. After circulating a petition at the end of the season last year regarding the state's handling of parking at the beach, Preston said he is still waiting for selectmen to receive a response from Richard McLeod, director of parks and recreation, regarding actual figures collected post-season, from mid-September to McLeod later admitted that the $200,000 to $400,000 amount he had reported was in fact an error, but offered no new figure. "I'd like to see if we could get a real answer on this," Preston said. "This is an issue that goes away every year and comes back each year," Preston said. "The way I read this, it's just Concord dictating us again."
At the North Hampton board meeting held on January 14, the North Hampton board selectmen congratulated Conservation Commission Chairman Henry Mixter for being awarded with a 2001-02 Gulf of Maine Visionary Award. Mixter received the honor for his efforts in the successful restoration of the Little River salt marsh.
Laura Simmons, Chairman of the North Hampton board planning board presented the board with a legal opinion from Attorney John Ryan about the way the board's budget should be handled. Simmons suggested to the board that they fill the position of clerk to oversee the budget, and board member Judy Day volunteered for the position and was unanimously elected. In other business, the planning board formed an Application Review Committee that will review new applications for a completeness and compliance to applicable regulations.
For now, SAU 21 Superintendent Jack Bourgoin has decided not to leave the Seacoast for a job offer as superintendent of the SAU 10 school district in Derry, NH. Dr John Moody, the assistant superintendent in Salem, NH, has been appointed to the position. Moody will succeed superintendent David Brown, who retired on June 30 after 52 years of service to the Derry Community.
Vivianne G. Marcotte and the Hampton Conservation Commission issued a petition seeking $3 million dollars to attain conservation easements and/or open space land in an attempt to be prepared to meet any opportunity for land purchase as it occurs. Marcotte said that the $3 million will not impact the taxpayer all at once, and that this is important for the town, since it is at a point where it's almost built out, and if the townspeople are serious about keeping open space, someone will need to pay for it.
Hampton Budget committee member Mary-Louise Woolsey appeared before the board of selectmen to discuss the town's use of community bulletin access on Public Access Cable Channel 22. She was upset with the board's decision to remove conservation commission warrant article information from Channel 22. Woolsey said she has a problem with the board trying to deny the public information that might be useful.
Seabrook residents and town officials denounced representatives from AT&T Broadband at a public hearing. Selectman Chairman Asa Knowles Jr. stated that the contract the town has with AT&T Broadband should never have been signed. According to the town's counsel, Rob Ciandella, the purpose of the hearing was "to hear evidence that AT&T is providing the best available technology to the extent technically and economically feasible as required by the Franchise Agreement." Many Seabrook residents at the hearing expressed the same frustrations and disappointment with AT&T's inability to provide them with an affordable and an upgraded cable system.
Rate stability and customer service were on the minds of the Hampton officials who spoke at a public hearing regarding the proposed sale of Hampton Water Works to the Connecticut-based Aquarion company. "We want to be the service provider, employer and investment of choice, said executive vice president of Aquarion, Janet Hansen. Hampton Town Manager, James Barrington noted how water is the only utility left in Hampton that is actually in Hampton, and mentioned how the recent change in cable providers had caused trouble. He suggested that it would be important to have a place in Hampton where customers could physically hand over their bills and speak with representatives face-to-face.
The home-schooled sports participation issue at Winnacunnet High School will continue to drag on. Following the decision of the school board in November to deny reconsideration of the school's current policy, which prohibits home-schooled students from participating in Winnacunnet sports and other co-curricular activities, the Perkins family of Seabrook continued to seek a change in the policy at the board's December meeting that would allow ninth-grader Joshua Perkins to play basketball at Winnacunnet. Board members voted 4-1 to allow review of the school's home education policy at a public hearing in February.
Hampton's Kassandra Tapley's life was saved by her dog, who started to bark when smoke from a furnace was sensed in Tapley's residence. It was a good thing the dog notified her owner of the smoke, because the furnace was starting to burn the walls and start a fire. A burned wire and a piece of the wall which the firefighters removed during their investigation was the only significant damage thanks to the heroic pup.
The problem of whether or not this year's Hampton deliberative session will be a live broadcast was aired again at this week's selectmen meeting. The issue influenced a substantial amount of debate among the board members. Selectman Bonnie Searle proposed delaying the broadcast by a set amount of time in an effort to attract more members of the community to the February 2 meeting. Selectman Brian Warburton continued to campaign for the live airing, since the number of voters attending the deliberative each year has yet to reach the 50 mark, and the live airing may spark more interest. Selectmen voted 4-1 to continue the practice of broadcasting the deliberation session live.
With a 4-1 vote at the Selectmen's meeting, selectmen voted to waive the bid process in conformance with section 8:203 of town ordinances in order to enter into an agreement with Granite Bank for financing of the proposed police facility. Town manager, James Barrington said that further research of offers runs the risk of losing the commitment of Granite Bank. Barrington said legal options have been sought by an attorney and that the Granite Bank's attorneys would also be reviewing the proposal to make sure that the best interest of Hampton and the taxpayers of Hampton is a priority and that every measure is being taken to make this load a good one.
The Winnacunnet High School building campaign went on again in Seabrook, where SAU 21 Superintendent of Schools, Jack Bourgoin detailed plans of the architectural firm H.L. Turner Group, Inc., for the 2002 Winnacunnet $20.6 million addition and renovation proposal, including the designed two-level athletic building. Another discussion focused on Seabrook's future as a member of SAU 21. The Seabrook board of selectmen had recently voted to put forth a warrant article asking voter to approve $10,000 for the purpose of conducting a study exploring the feasibility of withdrawing from the Winnacunnet High School District. Bourgoin admitted that drop-out rates of Seabrook students exceed those of the three remaining sending schools -Hampton, Hampton Falls, and North Hampton-he said that Winnacunnet is not causing the drop-out rate.
Route 1 construction through five Seacoast towns from Seabrook to Rye was the subject of a state Department of Transportation meeting in Hampton Falls. The meeting was held to discuss about putting a medium strip the whole length of Route 1 and putting lights about every quarter of a mile. Route 1 in Hampton is owned by the town, which has long opposed creating a divided highway and is in the midst of rebuilding the road from the center of town north almost to the Hampton/North Hampton town line. Proposed local repaving programs we also discussed.
T.R.A.S.H. is an acronym for Taxpayers Revolt Against State Hi-Jinks. The Rye-based organization is committed to educating the public about the source of and expenditure of tax dollars. The organization mailed out a letter and a reply card, and from the first mailing the group generated fifteen pages of comments voiced about the state-wide property tax. The state-wide property tax belongs to everyone, not just the so-called donor towns. The state-wide property tax is not about education or children, said founder, Betty Toby, "it has nothing to do with education. The state-wide property tax is nothing but a smokescreen...an attempt by people in the New Hampshire legislature to create either a sales or an income tax."
Hampton Falls selectmen support having the Seacoast Artist Association (SAA) share the old library with the town's Historical Society but, because of the cost, are less enthusiastic about moving the building. The SAA and the Historical Society submitted proposals at the January 2 selectmen's meeting to use the building. Both groups also indicated a willingness to share the facility; however, the Historical Society indicated it would commit to doing so for only one or two years, while a spokesman for the SAA said they wanted a long-term commitment.
The North Hampton Zoning board of Adjustment set a date for a public hearing regarding the expansion of a special exception that had been previously granted to the New Hampshire Academy of Artistic Gymnastics. The Academy instructs children in the areas of gymnastics, cheering and dance. Since the expansion would affect all abutters, it was decided to hold a public hearing to discuss the matter.
Close to 50 people, many lined the walls, crowded into the meeting room at the Hampton town office building to listen to written input regarding the proposal, which involves the existing Sea Castle Hotel, Ton's Landing, and the Atlantic Motel, and making the space into a nine-story, 88-unit structure, which would have risen to a height of 108 feet at its tallest portion in the center, with a second-floor restaurant, a sales center and retail space as part of the proposal. Most concerns have to do with the height of the building, however some people are in favor and think that it is important for the town of Hampton, and that it's 'our chance to do something,' said Zoning board member Vic Lessard.
At the citizen's budget briefing held recently in North Hampton, the town's operating budget for fiscal year 2002-2003 and a number of warrant articles were reviewed with the public. Town Administrator Russell McAllister went over the budget, which totaled $3,278,129. He explained that most of the increase in the budget is due to contractual increases such as salaries and health insurance.
To the delight of fans everywhere, the New England Patriots won the Superbowl. Police and Fire needs were deliberated in Hampton over the weekend as the pitch was made again to replace the aging Hampton Police Station. The project has been delayed due to a lawsuit launched by an Exeter resident challenging the 2/3-3/5 rule. Support was also sought for leasing a maritime rescue boat for the Fire Department. Hampton's Article 13, seeking $3 million for land preservation came under heated discussion.
At the North Hampton deliberative session,, the proposed Pay As You Throw was highlighted, as it was noted the proposed cost of the bags were reduced from $2.35 to $1.90. Article 7 proposed returning to the practice of having Selectmen appoint the planning board members. Article 6 required a lengthy explanation as it dealt with the problem of sexually oriented business restrictions.
The Hampton Water Works noted that water levels were holding steady. Lack of rain in the spring and through the summer though would create a drought and severe water restrictions would be imposed across New England.
The Conservation Commission sought a grant for the Island Path Project at the Hampton Selectman Meeting, as abutters of the path and Selectman Warburton voiced their concern about the Commission's intents.
An amended Hampton Falls School Warrants were sent to the voters. Of concern was the school's ventilation system, and Special Education increases.
NH Governor Shaheen asked for Potassium Iodide pills which will counteract some of the effects of radiation in case of a nuclear accident.
North Hampton Selectmen were "blown off" a second time by a representative of AT&T Broadband who was supposed to appear to explain the lack of high-speed cable service to the town. Although high-speed internet access was installed in Hampton and North Hampton over the summer, this indifferent customer relations policy would continue to aggravate relations between the towns and the cable provider.
ACT ONE announced it would return for another season of summer theater at the Winnacunnet Community Auditorium. Four hundred hearty souls dove into the frigid seas of the Atlantic at Hampton Beach as part of the "Penguin Plunge" to raise more that $197,000 for the Special Olympics New Hampshire.
Hampton Falls Emergency Management Director Bob Gale announced on February 6 that he was planning to step down by the end of the year.
Eight Winnacunnet High School articles were deliberated on, and sent on to voters. A budget of $12,841,810 and a planned expansion topped the discussion.
Sacred Heart held its First Annual Father-Daughter Dance.
Seabrook's Article 54 sought to return the job of the town Fire Chief to an elected position. Last year, voters had chosen to make the position appointed. Regardless of what the vote is, Deputy Chief Jeff Brown is slated to be appointed to the position in March for the year of 2002.
Seabrook was unable to create a quorum for the fifth consecutive year and was thus unable to amend any of the 57 articles at the deliberative session on Tuesday, February 5. Seabrook aims to upgrade or replace a number of pieces of equipment, including an archaic "mini-mainframe" new police cruisers, and other pieces of emergency equipment.
The Hampton Falls School Board expressed its frustration with the Facilities Commission, which is supposed to formulate a plan for the Lincoln Akerman School's future.
North Hampton approved a BMW Motorcycle dealership which will go in the former Dexter Outlet building near the Rye border.
An expansion was in the works for the New Hampshire Academy of Artistic Gymnastics and Sports in North Hampton.
Seabrook academics were scrutinized at the town School Board meetings, as it was noted the students were 16 points lower than the state average.
A tour of the proposed Island Path Walkway in Hampton was held on Saturday, drawing the continued fire of local residents who are opposed to the project and the Conservation Commission.
T.R.A.S.H. (Taxpayers Revolt Against State Hi-Jinks) talked in Rye about the ongoing state education crisis. The focus of the talk by the State Representatives was HCR 14, which proclaimed that the New Hampshire State Supreme Court overreached its authority when it made the Claremont Decision. The decision has resulted in a financial fiasco as property-rich "Donor Towns" are taxed more give funds to the state for distribution to "Recipient Towns" who are not required to spend the funds on education. HCR 14 is yet another attempt to undo the current problem and restore the status quo.
Seabrook Selectmen had a diverse agenda as they stood against Article 1 of the proposed $20 Million Winnacunnet High School addition. The town is still in litigation over the amount of money it sends to the High School. A motion was made to suspend Town Manager Russ Bailey for a week without pay for not hiring a preferred firefighter- it was not seconded. And a ban on outdoor water use was approved, as the drought continued on the Seacoast.
Hampton's School Board sought to get assurances that enough busses would be available if all the students had to ever be evacuated from the schools.
NH State Representative Johnson met with North Hampton School Students who are seeking to preserve the White Island Light at the Isles of Shoals.
The Gray Funeral Home had its grand opening in Hampton. It is located in the former Friendly's Restaurant.
Rita Palmer James, 83, a former Hampton Resident, passed away in Minnesota. A direct descendant of William Palmer, one of the first settlers of Hampton, she served as a member of the US Army Nurses Corp, and was one of the first women to receive the Purple Heart for injuries suffered in the Philippines during World War 2.
The Hampton Fire Department and Hampton Beach Fire Department took another step towards a fire service agreement, pending a final agreement between the beach precinct and the town.
Hampton Selectmen reminded the town that voting day would be held on Tuesday March 12, 2002 at the Marston School. There are 49 warrant articles to be decided upon.
Two Lafayette Road businesses in North Hampton which are owned by Jim Jones were issued a cease and desist order. The businesses, which deal with landscaping and dirt, had violated certain conditions imposed by the town for their continued operation.
Questions were raised about the proposed Winnacunnet High School Freshman Academy which may replace the existing gym.
A fire in Hampton Falls destroyed the home of Tom and Sue Beeler on King Road. While they escaped, a number of pets perished in the blaze which destroyed the old home. A fire fund has been set up for them.
A K-9 unit did a drug check at Winnacunnet High School. Nothing was found.
The proposed nine-story hotel on Hampton Beach was voted down by the Zoning Board again. The architect will revise the plans. The plan would be approved later in the year, but no work had taken place as 2002 drew to a close.
Parents of home-schooled children made their opinions known as the debate over allowing their children participate in Winnacunnet High School Sports programs. While a revised policy to allow them to participate has been drafted, voting on the issue was put off until the March 27 meeting.
A lack of paperwork stalled the progress of the North Hampton Planning Board. It was also announced that Building Inspector Paul Charron had resigned prior to the meeting, and had apparently issued only verbal denials of permits which came before the board.
The Hampton Rotary Auction was going high-tech with its auction on April 7 as it would put items on the Internet to be reviewed prior to the televised auction.
Hampton Falls Facility Manager William Kenney took issue with the school board, mainly over the board's failure to recommend a $110,000 ventilation system upgrade for the school.
A new tardy policy was approved for Winnacunnet High School.
The role of textbooks was the topic in North Hampton as certain topics are taught without a textbook, to the dismay of parents. It would be but one of may issues brought up by dissatisfied parents about the North Hampton School during 2002.
Winnacunnet School Board Member Paul Kelley of Seabrook was honored at his last meeting, as after nine years of service he has opted not to run again.
With local elections just a week away, the paper was filled with letters and advertisements promoting various candidates and causes.
The launch of a balloon in Hampton was delayed due to the weather. The red balloon, set to ascend 175 feet would show residents at Rings Terrace, Elaine St. Playhouse Circle and Richard St. how high a proposed wireless communication tower would be if Article 43 was passed. The balloon was launched in the end, but was so small it was not readily noticeable. The tower proposal would pass, but was later shelved due to the objections of residents who had not been fully informed of the red balloon's significance.
Security was adjusted at the Seabrook Power Plant in response to a new set of NRC rules and the ongoing threat of possible terrorist attack.
Hampton Selectmen and the Hampton Beach District agreed to have their lawyers draw up papers for the town's eventual acquisition of the Hampton Beach Fire Station.
It was up to Hampton voters whether to repeal the Growth Management Ordinance on Tuesday. While planning board members seem to think that Hampton has caught up on the service gap, the Growth Management Board seems to disagree. Nine hundred linear feet of the Hampton Beach Seawall going from Great Boar's Head south was being repaired and replaced. Repairs of other portions of the sea walls beyond cosmetic touch-ups remained uncertain.
The sale of the Hampton Water Works to the Aquarion Company was approved by the State. It is worth noting that the Hampton Water Works was the last locally owned and operated utility in town.
Hampton's Conservation Commission agreed to work with the abutters to the Island Path walkway project. This came on the heels that the commission had been turned down a grant of $15,000 for materials, which will delay or alter the planned walkway. Abutters again voiced their aggravation with the commission and the Selectmen.
Seabrook parents were confused about a new girl's softball team that is in the works which will allow girls from several towns to play on it.
The newly-formed Hampton Outreach Program now offers transportation to Hampton Beach Residents who need a lift to the supermarket, pharmacy or medical appointments.
Hampton Selectmen were updated on the impending battle in Concord by the town's state representatives. The battle is over the unfair education tax which has saddled 'donor' towns with collecting and sending funds to 'recipient' towns who more often than not it seems, uses the funds for purposes other than education.
Town elections were held across the Seacoast on Tuesday, March 12, 2002, resulting in unusually heavy voter turnout.
One of the chief developments was the failure of the Winnacunnet High School addition by three of the four involved towns. Close on the heels of this was the pre-planned announcement of the departure of the WHS Principal Judeann Langlois, who is resigning and moving to Florida to care for her elderly parents. Contrary to other inaccurate reports though, voters did pass the contracts for the Seacoast Education Association and the Seacoast Education Support Personnel Association.
In North Hampton, E. Allen Hines barely won against John Simmons for a selectman's seat by eleven votes (679-668). A recount was held, narrowing the gap, but confirming Hines as the victor. Phil Wilson and Ron Todd topped the five running for two North Hampton Planning Board Seats.
In Hampton, additional funds were approved for the long overdue replacement for the town police station- construction was slated to begin in the summer, but due to a variety of problems construction would not begin until 2003. The fire department got a slim victory for the purchase or lease of a larger rescue boat, and approval for an ambulance replacement. The $3 Million bond for the Conservation Commission failed, although a $300,000 was added to the Conservation Land Fund. Virginia Bridle and William "Skip" Sullivan retained their seats on the Board of Selectmen, and Jack Lessard returned to the Planning Board with Thomas Higgins taking the second seat.
In Seabrook, Asa Knowles returned to the Board of Selectmen.
In Hampton Falls, Maurice Caruso defeated Chris Merrill for the Selectman's Seat.
The Seabrook School Board approved the teacher and administrator contract renewals for the 2002-2003 school year on the eve of the elections
In Hampton, fire officers were sworn in at the Selectman's Meeting as the latest Lieutenants David Lang and Justin Cutting, and the newest Captains, Matt Clark and David Mattson were sworn in.
Hampton Falls sent a letter off to the New Hampshire DOT to determine if the current renovations to Route 1 would include a median strip as proposed by the Kimball-Chase Study. In other Hampton Falls news, the search was on for the town's oldest person to receive the Boston Post Cane.
The North Hampton Planning Board gave conditional approval for Blake Chevrolet to move into the former McDonalds property on Lafayette Road, next to Blake Mitsubishi. However, the lot would be slated for the construction of a car wash sometime in 2003.
The new North Hampton Wrestling Team held its first-ever match.
Cable workers are busy installing fiber-optic cables- possibly for the long-awaited high-speed internet access sought by local towns.
The Hampton Falls School Board debated the teacher contracts, and were concerned about the change in procedures for the contracts, which are now jointly agreed to. This was done in response to Seabrook's lack of participation in the contracts, but Hampton Falls was worries Hampton and North Hampton would now take charge of the negotiations.
The Seacoast was surprised as winter Marched back in full force, bringing snow and frigid temperatures as "Spring" officially began.
It was confirmed that Seabrook's Fire Chief would now be appointed rather than elected by Seabrook voters. The town's operating budget passed, a rare feat. A study to relieve Seabrook's chronic water shortage was approved, as was transportation for the handicapped and elderly, and a new computer system. The police received two of the four requested vehicles. Seabrook voters rejected pay raises for town employees, road repairs, and approved a study to remove them from the Winnacunnet High School.
The Hampton Beach Village Precinct fire services were turned over to the town of Hampton, effective April 1. The lease will last for three years with an option to renew, and the town must show good faith efforts to build a new fire station at the Beach.
The Winnacunnet High School weight room was certified as a Fitness Facility. Plans are underway to refurbish and replace outdated equipment in the room.
Sandra Nickerson was named Hampton School Board Chairman. It was noted at the meeting that a surprising number of school ballots were found left behind and unmarked in the voting booths during the recent elections.
Newly elected town officials in Hampton were sworn in and took their seats.
Hampton Resident Rick Middleton coached the US Paralympic Ice Sledge Hockey Team to victory in Salt Lake City Utah. The US Team won in overtime 4-3 over the defending Gold Medal team from Norway.
The proposed Royale Shore Vacation Resort time-share hotel/condominium at Hampton Beach returned to the Zoning Board with 30 feet trimmed off the original height. With the new board in place, the project was approved.
After months of stonewalling, AT&T Broadband, the region's cable provider, announced that it would be bringing high-speed internet access to Hampton and North Hampton by the end of the summer.
With drought conditions persisting, the town of Seabrook began to take steps on clarifying the language and fines for violation of the ongoing water ban. By the end of the summer, Seabrook would have draconian water restrictions in place due to the severe shortage.
Hampton Selectmen sorted out appointments to the town's boards.
North Hampton was considering hiring a full-time webmaster to handle the town's official website.
New Hampshire was considering plans for a phragmites mitigation project in Hampton. In invasive marsh weed provides mosquitoes with a better breeding ground, crowds out native species and when dry poses a possible fire hazard. Members of the neighboring Waterglade Village Condominium Association voiced their opposition to the plan.
Hampton Falls Grange Member Ruth Pelton took first place in the High Singles at the New Hampshire Grange Bowling Championship.
Hampton Falls was planning to hold a meeting to iron out the details of making Volunteer Fire Chief Mark Wooles' position a full-time one.
Spurred on by unfounded rumors in North Hampton that the teachers were unhappy with the school administration, the schoolteachers showed up at a recent North Hampton Schoolboard Meeting in force to express their support for the current administration. Some parents present voiced their disappointment in the school, a trend that continued through the year.
Widow Fletchers in Hampton earned a place in "The Book of Great American Watering Holes: An enjoyable look at Over 100 Brew Pubs, Saloons, Inns, Taverns and Pubs." By Michael Caldwell. The book covers a region from Pennsylvania to New England.
Road work intensified on Route 1 and Highland Ave in Hampton.
There were no fatalities in an ultralight plane crash behind the Harley-Davidson dealership in North Hampton. It was apparently caused by a muffler falling off and hitting the propeller. The ultralight is considered a loss.
Hampton was the proud recipient of a brand-new pumper truck, just one day after the Hampton Beach Precinct handed the keys to the Hampton Beach fire station over to Chief Lipe.
The NRC gave Seabrook Station a favorable review, despite opposition from critics.
Seabrook's water ban was tightened.
The Winnacunnet High School Board modified the Home Education policy to allow home-schooled students to participate in sports provided they take some courses at a public school.
New Hampshire's Governor Jeanne Shaheen delivered her State of the State address to the combined Exeter and Hampton Chambers of Commerce at the Inn of Hampton. While the crowd appeared pleased with her comments on higher education, they were less enthusiastic about the current statewide property tax. As a result of the September 11 attacks, the New Hampshire is working to encourage more tourism from areas a short drive away from the state. Hampton Beach and other area attractions may benefit from that drive. She also noted that the state was trying to attract more high-tech firms to the region.
Harold Higgins of North Hampton came before the board of selectmen to warn them about proposed state legislation which may move Memorial Day to May 30, making New Hampshire the only state in the Union to observe it on that day. Currently, Memorial Day is observed on the fourth Monday of May, and such a change may make it difficult for out of state family members to coordinate Memorial Day activities with their New Hampshire cousins. The Bill itself is supported by the Veterans of Foreign Wars.
Hampton Beach resident Charlie Preston appeared before the Hampton Board of Selectmen to report that he was getting no response from DRED on the status of the Beach parking meters on matters of revenue or usage. The meters, which are strictly enforced, are widely held to hamper pre and post-season business on the Beach. Since this is a cash cow for the state, the Selectmen didn't believe any concessions would be forthcoming.
Seabrook's students showed off their mastery of algebraic _expression to the school board and SAU 21 Superintendent Jack Bourgoin.
The Hampton Falls Conservation Commission has been given permission to purchase a large parcel of land near the town's forest. Owned by Drew Morris, the 62.5 acre plot of land is located on the north side of Route 84 near the Kensington town line. Abutters objected, citing concerns about hunters coming too close to their property and discharging firearms.
A new North Hampton program is inviting residents to "Adopt a plot" to maintain and beautify small parcels of land around the town.
Michael Oliviera, a recent WHS graduate was sworn in on the North Hampton Police Department.
Hearings continued on the proposed Hampton Beach Hotel-Condo project. The planning board deemed the presented plans "Incomplete" and requested the plans be finished and resubmitted for review.
The Hampton Falls School Board chose not to hire a full-time librarian for the Lincoln Akerman School. Also of concern was a proposed school bus route change.
The Seabrook Harbor Dredging Project was completed.
The Annual Rotary Auction beat expectations, raising $27,400.
The North Hampton Planning Board took over the jurisdiction of telecommunication zoning ordinances.
The auction of the Seabrook Nuclear Power Plant reached its conclusion on Monday with the announcement that Florida Power and Light has agreed to purchase a controlling interest in the plant. The Power Plant was sold for a total of 836.6 million dollars. The deal will be finalized by the end of the year. The breakdown of the sale is as follows : 749 million for the plant itself and 61.9 million for the nuclear fuel. 25.6 million for Unit 2 components. Officials stated that there are no present plans to complete the partially constructed Unit 2. Florida Power and Light Co. currently operates a 5,063 megawatt portfolio of plants in 14 states.
On Monday April 22, the North Hampton Board of Selectman made appointments to a temporary committee charged with investigating the feasibility of a Municipal Complex. Once established the group will be examining the drawings of architect Denis Mires which calls for a separation of the town municipal and safety services.
State Fire Marshall Donald Bliss appeared before selectman Monday to discuss Hampton's potential involvement in the distribution of Potassium Iodide tablets (KI) to use for Thyroid blocking agent in radiation emergencies. Talk is now geared toward toward issuing 2 tablets per resident within a 10 mile radius of Seabrook Station. Bliss emphasized that the program was not to cause alarm. Bliss will continue to work on a plan to bring back to the board at a later date.
The Seabrook Board of Selectman will be meeting with officials from the Dragon Mosquito Control Company to discuss the possibility of spraying a larger area of the town that had previously been agreed upon. At last weeks Selectman's meeting, school board member Blanche Bragg suggested spraying the entire town because of the possibility of the West Nile virus.
The total outdoor water ban in Seabrook has been expanded to include the prohibition of outside showers at the beach. The showers will no longer be in service. Violators of the ban will be given a written warning for the first offense, and a 100 dollar fine on each of the next two offenses. After the fourth violation the town will disconnect their water. Commercial fishing boats are allowed to use hoses to rinse down their boats. Nurseries are allowed to do the same. Residents who use their wells are asked to inform the town in order to prevent being fined.
The Hampton School board discussed a number of issues at their meeting Monday night They talked about fundraising efforts for Marston school playground project, ID badges for Hampton School district staff members, and the request to plant two trees in memory of 2 former students at Centre School.
Hampton welcomed four new firefighters to the Fire Department.
Temperatures hit record highs on Wednesday, April 17, before plummeting to a more seasonal level, and producing some snow on Monday.
An earthquake measured at 5.1 to 5.5 in Northern New York State was felt on Saturday, April 20 around 6:30 am across the Seacoast region. Other than a few rattled possessions and nerves, no significant damage was reported.
Hampton Selectmen heard Glen Joiner's opposition to the proposed 175' cell tower which voters approved to be put behind his house. After much discussion, it was decided to take no action on the tower, and further discussion was required.
Bill Elliot, Hampton Beach's legendary "Singing Cop" and others along Dearborn Ave in Hampton looked back at fifty years of holding April Birthday Celebrations. A surprising number of people on the street (including Bill Elliot's wife Alzena) were born in April.
The Seabrook Shooting Range was shut down due to safety concerns.
The installation of video equipment to allow the Seabrook Selectmen's meeting to be broadcast will begin in a week. It is hoped the broadcasts will begin by September.
North Hampton Police Association donated a speed display trailer which was acquired through local donations to the town. The trailer uses radar to clock a car's speed and display it on a panel large enough for the driver to see as he passes.
The North Hampton Zoning Board had its first meeting in thirty years without mainstay Mike Iafolla on the board. The first order of business was the proposed construction of a garage to consolidate the Lamprey Brothers operations to a single location which is not visible from the street The signage sizes of several large Route 1 businesses was considered as well.
The Lane Memorial Library is seeking volunteers to archive back issues of the Atlantic News.
Hampton's local cable channel 22 was off the air for several days due to a disconnected cable- the accidental result of ongoing cable upgrades in the area.
Hampton historian John Holman and Lane Memorial Library Assistant Director Bill Teschek presented Hampton Police Chief William Wrenn a "History of the Hampton Police Department" compiled by Mr. Holman. The volume will be put in the Police Department's memorabilia case.
For the 32nd Earth Day, supporters of New Hampshire Gubernatorial Candidate Craig Benson, including his wife Denise, gathered at Plaice Cove in Hampton on Monday to clean up the beach.
Hampton Falls will give a voting machine a test run in the September Primary election. However, no money is allocated for the purchase of such a machine yet.
Students and facility of the North Hampton School defended the community service program which was under fire by parents who believed the time would be better spent in the classroom.
Sacred Heart School Students broke records at their Rock-A-Thon raising $55,000 in the annual fund-raiser.
Hampton Beach business owner Leo Poisson Jr. went before the town's board of selectmen Monday night to address the issue of parking at the beach. Some spaces he leases from the town in the municipal parking lot may be impacted by construction of the new Police Station.
Snow, cold weather and rain dampened spirits on the Seacoast.
Six year old Christopher Reilly of Hampton was the proud recipient of a letter from President George W. Bush who thanked him for his advice on how to deal with terrorists. His suggestion was that "If you find any of the people on Osama Bin Laden's side you can capture them and tickle them with a feather."
Talk over the proposed Cell Phone Tower in Hampton continued without the representatives of Aurora Communications present.
The New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services were set to reopen clam flats along the Hampton Falls and Taylor Rivers. The flats had been closed since the late 1980s due to its proximity to the Hampton Wastewater Treatment plant, and a lack of funds for testing.
Seacoast firemen were preparing for a fire practice session on Route 1 in Hampton Falls on Sunday morning in an abandoned house. Fires will be set and put out until the house is gone.
Hampton's Recreation an Parks Director Dyana Lassonde unveiled the Community Center study, noting that the project is needed now more than ever.
Senator Gregg and Representative Sununu voiced their concerns over the severe restrictions placed on inshore ground fishermen which threaten their livelihood. The restrictions would end up closing some fishing cooperatives, but were relaxed somewhat later in the year.
Work on Route 1 in Hampton is progressing quite speedily, to the delight of locals.
With a lack of necessary figures from Granite State Bank, the town of Hampton was starting to look elsewhere to finance the construction of the new police station. To make matters worse, the architectural team who are working on the job may split up. This was yet another setback for the long-delayed project, and construction would not begin until after 2002.
North Hampton's first ever Municipal Planning Committee was formed. The seven member panel will look over the forthcoming master plan for the future of the town.
Hampton Falls Fire Department hosted a live fire training exercise for local firefighters on Sunday, burning down a house at 115 Lafayette Road.
Three Hampton residents approached the Selectmen with their thoughts on the proposed 175 foot communication tower, which resulted in the suspension of the voter-approved project.
Seabrook Station was taken off line for its 8th refueling outage. It has been 460 days since the last refueling.
Seabrook's water levels remain low, and a draconian water ban is in effect for the town.
North Hampton's town offices moved into the space over the Police Station. The tax collector and town clerk are the only ones remaining in the old town offices.
The Hampton Recreation Men's Softball Team season got underway with eight teams preparing to play the summer away.
Hampton Falls Lincoln Akerman School Board is seeking advice from professionals as they seek ways to improve the existing school.
NH Governor Shaheen sought aid for fishermen stricken by the new federal fishing regulations. The new regulations, while apparently necessary to revive dwindling fishing stocks, will impose a considerable amount of hardship on fishermen across all of New England.
A rainy Noreaster bore down on the region. While the rain was welcome, much more was needed to relieve the drought which would worsen through the summer
Superintendent, Jack Bourgoin is leaving SAU 21. He has accepted a position as Superintendent of schools in Auburn Massachusetts.
A Tennessee walking horse has been offered to the town of Hampton as a donation from Fred Shaake a Hampton Beach entrepreneur, to do Police work.
The North Hampton Planning board reversed an earlier decision to deny the application of a telecommunications company.
The Seabrook selectmen have cracked down on gossip with town employees. A strong warning has been issued against continuation of such behavior.
Water Superintendent, Warner Knowles, main concern continues to be the drought conditions experienced in Seabrook. It is expected to get worse.
Hampton residents donated over 10,000 pounds of canned food to the post office at their annual food drive.
The baseball field on South Main street in Seabrook , which is the site for the local Babe Ruth league is in a state of disrepair. Games are not going to be able to be played there says selectman Karen Knight.
In a recent water supply update released by Operations manager, Brian Goetz, of Aquarion Water Co. they can deliver an estimated amount of 3.4 million gallons a day.
Route 1 project is doing well. Completion of the work in the Highland Ave area is still scheduled for Mid June.
Act One's Hampton Summer Theatre has begun accepting registration for its youth summer theatre program, Arts Alive.
Weird weather struck on Saturday, bringing snow showers to the Seacoast. By the end of the week, though, things were warming up nicely.
Ruth Leveille, of Atkinson, was selected to take over the position at Winnacunnet High School, as the new principal. The official nomination was on the agenda for the Winnacunnet School board regularly scheduled meeting. Leveille is the current headmaster at Pembroke Academy, in Pembroke New Hampshire, and is expected to start her new position around July 1st.
A report on a recent meeting of Hamptons Insurance review Committee led to the discussion of the health insurance plan covering Hampton town employees. The insurance issue involves employees of the dept. of Public Works , town office, police, police sergeants, firefighters , and fire dept. officers.
The North Hampton Zoning Board of Adjustment granted variances to two incoming businesses , The Sagamore Golf Center and Olympia Sports. Olympia Sports was granted a variance permitting the placement of a sign that exceeded the maximum square footage.
North Hampton Zoning Board of Adjustment, Robert Field is pushing for the board to adopt a policy administering oaths before they hear cases.
In response to a federal judge's order on a lawsuit against the National Marine Fisheries service, the New Hampshire Fish and Game Dept. used emergency rules to extend the current closure on commercial fishing for groundfish through June 30th.
A large number of community members attended Memorial Day ceremonies in four Seacoast area towns. The ceremonies took place at Hampton Beach, Hampton Falls, North Hampton, and Hampton.
Hampton Area Chamber of Commerce President BJ "Doc" Noel said that Memorial Day weekend brought a lot of tourists to Hampton Beach, where many attended the Continental's concert and enjoyed the fireworks. Bookings at area hotels are up and more vacation guides have been sent out this year than were sent last year at this time.
A robbery took place at the Citizens Bank branch in Hampton Falls. The suspect, a single male, was described as about 5'8", having a thin build and light colored beard. No weapon was shown at the time of the robbery.
Seabrook town officials are reconsidering the possibility of locking cemetery gates at night after residents complained of finding evidence of late night parties near the graves.
The purchase of flowers to decorate the traffic island in the middle of the Seabrook Beach parking lot created some controversy at the town's board of selectmen meeting last week. Selectman Asa Knowles was upset with the purchase saying that it was made without the consent from the board. Town Manager Russ Bailey, and Selectman Karen Knight said that the issue had been discussed at earlier meetings.
Winnacunnet High School enrollment has increased so much that there is now a need for additional staff. Principal, Judeanne Langlois made a request to add three new teaching positions in the areas of Social Studies, English, and World Languages.
] Marston School students honored more than 30 Hampton Police and Firefighters on Friday, May 31. It was organized by the Principal, David O'Connor and Assistant Principal, Louis Costa. Also honored at the gathering was Hampton's John M. Holman, who was presented a United States Flag which had flown over the Capital in Washington DC in his honor.
Noted Hampton resident, Eleanor Dawson 84, of 5 Cogger Street, died Friday, May 31, at her residence. She served in the U.S. Air Force, as First Lieutenant Nurse in the Medical Corps during WW2, later she served as a staff nurse with the Red Cross Blood mobile in North Hampton.
Police station financing options continued at Monday's Selectman's meeting. They are looking into a 10 year loan opposed to a 20 year loan with Zions Bank in Newton MA. Previous attempts to reach an agreement with Granite Bank were unsuccessful.
The Freshman Academy is growing at Winnacunnet. Advertised as a volunteer program for limited number of students, the first year Freshman Academy had 60 students. The number of eight grade applicants for the next school year was reported to be 90 students .
Centennial Hall renovations continue with the installation of new front doors just in time for the 11th Old Home Day Celebration in North Hampton. The large windows above the doors were removed for most of the summer, but were replaced by the end of 2002.
Several Milestones were reached last week, in the ongoing widening reconstruction project on Rte 1 in Hampton, and Highland Ave at the beach. The milling of the intersection of Lafayette Rd, High St, and Exeter Rd were completed as were the concrete sidewalks.
The Winnacunnet Warrior Baseball Team won the Class "L" Championship over the Nashua Purple Panthers 2-0 on Saturday Evening, just before Graduation - thus adding to the excitement of that event.
The Winnacunnet High School Class of 2002 graduated.
Reverend George E. Ham of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal Church in Hampton is moving on to a new assignment to combine the Parishes of St. Cecilia's in Wolfboro NH and St. Joan of Arc in Alton NH.
With the arrival of the Home Depot and Shaws in North Hampton, the old Railroad Bridge on Cedar Road was causing some concerns because of increased traffic on that road, including heavy 18 wheel rigs which have been seen crossing the old bridge (which has an 11 ton weight limit). Solutions for this are being sought, and an increased police presence was positioned on that road. For most of the summer, the bridge would be closed to traffic of any sort until proper repairs were carried out, and it was reopened to traffic in the fall.
Despite the rains making up for a dry spring, water levels remain a concern. In Seabrook, plans were in the works to increase the water fees for metered commercial users. Residences in Seabrook do not have meters.
Volunteers at the Lane Memorial Library in Hampton were recognized at the annual reception luncheon.
The Hampton Board of Selectmen approved three temporary signs for the ACT ONE summer theater being held at Winnacunnet High School.
The Hampton television advisory committee asked and received funds for an industrial VCR for taping meetings.
In light of the imminent departure of Robin Radigan, the Hampton Falls School Board was busy seeking a replacement for the dedicated secretary.
A surf contest was planned at "The Wall" on June 15 at Hampton's North Beach.
Live Theater in the form of ACT ONE returned for the 55th year at Hampton.
Sandsculptors returned to Hampton Beach for the Second Annual Sandsculpting Competition. Good weather is helping them, and is attracting more visitors to the Beaches, where they were delighted by the sand-sational masterpieces.
Jamie Bruce of Aurora Communications finally appeared before Hampton Selectmen to talk about the proposed 175 foot tall telecommunications tower, which has been put on hold due to residents concerns. Bruce's assertion that Hampton was a "Seasonal Town" did not sit well with the selectmen.
The Hampton School Board honored several long-time school employees who were departing. An easement request made by a developer adjacent to Centre School was also considered. The chief concern of the project was drainage.
Junior High and Middle School students graduated as the school year came to a close.
The Philbrick Children's Park was dedicated in memory of Marine Corps Pvt/E1 Steven Jay Philbrick, a Hampton resident who was killed in Vietnam on June 6, 1969 at the age of 19.
Much of North Hampton's Old Home Days were rained out on Saturday, June 15.
Hampton's Seniors took their summer break.
Hampton Falls Grange presented the Community Citizen's Award to Carol Perkins.
Hampton Academy Junior High School students and the Hampton Recreation Department planted a Freedom Garden at the intersection of Park Ave and Winnacunnet Road.
Due to allegations of misappropriating Title 1 funds, Peter Sweet, the Principal of the North Hampton School was suspended with pay until the matter could be fully investigated. North Hampton Residents probed into the suspension of North Hampton School Principal Peter Sweet. While SAU 21 officials were tight-lipped about the entire affair, Sweet was returned to his position at North Hampton School after it was ascertained that no wrongdoing had been done.
Seabrook was looking out of town to seek a resolution to the town's chronic water shortage.
Balls of seaweed found on Hampton's beaches were found to be just balls of seaweed. Lobstermen who see them all the time got a good chuckle as the mass media pounced on the issue and blew it out of proportion.
O'Donnell's Imports of Route 1 in Hampton decided to donate all their profits from Sunday, June 30 to the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation.
David Brown, the retiring Superintendent of SAU 10 (Derry NH) was appointed the interim superintendent of SAU 21, as the current superintendent, Jack Bourgoin, is departing to take a job in Andover Mass.
The anticipated timeshare condominium-resort at Hampton Beach cleared its final hurdle. The planned demolition of existing buildings, including the popular Ron's Landing Restaurant was supposed to begin sometime in September after the Hampton Beach Seafood Festival. However, no work was done on the site at all much to everyone's amazement, and the businesses there remained open for business to the relief to their regular patrons.
Hampton Falls Selectmen met with New Hampshire legislators to discuss the re-districting of the state, and the fate of Route 1.
As usual, the New Hampshire state legislature failed to do their duty and legislate. As a result, it fell to the NH Supreme Court to redistrict the state as they saw fit. Redistricting must be done every ten years after the Census is taken (in 2000).
Charles Preston, a Hampton Beach activist came before the Hampton Selectmen to argue against the town paying for a traffic study at the beach. He noted a 1938 Union Leader article proclaiming the erection of a four lane bridge between Seabrook and Hampton. The current bridge of course, is a narrow two-lane bridge erected in the late 1940's. The selectmen will look into the problem.
Hampton Selectmen decided to return a Blue Cross-Blue Shield insurance settlement to town employees.
Funding has finally been secured for the Hampton Police Station.
The Hobie Cat Regatta at Hampton Beach was dealt with foul weather again. A few boats made it out on Saturday, but Sunday was rained out.
The Moulton Hotel at the corner of Ocean Blvd and A Street at Hampton Beach was struck by a fire on its third floor, destroying two rooms. There were no injuries suffered, and the fire was quickly doused.
Seabrook Fire Chief Jeff Brown updated the selectmen on the town's current water situation, and conservation measures.
Peterson Field behind the Hampton Academy Junior High School was dedicated to honor long-time teacher, coach and athletic director John G. Peterson who taught at the Hampton Academy & High School from 1949 to 1970.
North Hampton School's Lighthouse Kids, a group dedicated to preserving the White Island Lighthouse at the Isles of Shoals visited the aging structure.
The troublesome railroad bridge on Cedar Road in North Hampton has been closed to Auto Traffic due to "Health, safety and welfare concerns". It is still open to foot and bicycle traffic.
Aquarion (formerly Hampton Water Works) approached North Hampton about pumping out 500,000 gallons of water a day out of two new non-permitted wells to relieve the constant water shortage in Seabrook. North Hampton's selectmen wanted several conditions to be met, including the installation of water meters in Seabrook residences.
Local artist John Mooers brought some lively colors to "B" Street on Hampton Beach as he painted a large 100'x18' mural for "The Ship's Inn".
The EPA visited Hampton Beach where it announced New Hampshire would get $205,000 to clean up the beaches and prevent closures.
Professional archaeologists dug into Hampton's history at the historic James House.
Meghan Knight, Matt Murphy and Lauren Goodhue of North Hampton left for Europe as part of the New Hampshire Youth Chorus.
O'Donnell's Imports of Hampton raised $800 to fight Cancer in a special one-day sale.
As the result of a generous donation of archival photos by the Atlantic News, the Lane Memorial Library is seeking volunteers to help catalog and file those photos.
Despite the rains of June, the drought situation has continued to worsen. Brown water appeared in North Hampton as the local wells reached their maximum capacity, and Aquarion (the former Hampton Water Works) put into effect water restrictions for Hampton, North Hampton, and Jenness Beach in Rye. Despite this decree, it took some time for word to get out as a number buildings maintained their outdoor watering of lawns (banned by the restrictions) , including the Hampton Town Offices and the new Shaws/Home Depot in North Hampton. Before summer was over, even the hand watering of outdoor plants was prohibited.
The Internet upgrade by the local cable company also brought a price increase for the service.
Funding was secured for the Hampton Police Station, although it took some effort to round up the town officials to sign the papers.
The Hampton Police secured two grants for bulletproof vests and other crime-fighting gear.
North Hampton Selectmen accepted Waste Management's offer to pick up trash and recyclables for subscribers and some public buildings at no additional cost. An anti-scavenging ordinance was also passed to keep people from taking aluminum out of the recycling bins for themselves.
The 25th Hershey Track and Field competition was held at Winnacunnet High School.
An almost empty aviation fuel tanker crashed on Route 1 in North Hampton near Regal Limousine, resulting in the closure of the road for two and a half hours as the mess was carefully cleaned up. There were no injuries.
Winnacunnet High School adopted a new set of conduct rules which will apply to employees, students and visitors.
North Hampton's school board had yet to decide on a time to meet about Title 1 funds. They have set a list of goals to accomplish to make the school better than it already is.
Alzena and William "Bill" Elliot (Hampton Beach's famous "Singing Cop") celebrated their 75th wedding anniversary.
North Hampton's Transportation Commissioner Bob Landman presented a long list of shortcomings of the North Hampton roads and intersections. For the most part, the Selectmen authorized him to submit letters to Concord to see about resolving some of these problems.
Girl's Lacrosse will be playing as a Varsity team next year.
Centre School in Hampton welcomed Jenn Spires on board as the school's new assistant principal.
The issue of a $193,912.92 settlement from the New Hampshire Municipal Health Trust which was recently given to Hampton after it was found that town employees were not fully covered by the plan as is was supposed. Before a standing room only crowd, it was decided that the money be returned to the town employees.
The New Hampshire Store on Route 95 North held it's grand reopening of its newly expanded facilities. The store offers a variety of New Hampshire made items from postcards to CDs.
In Seabrook, complaints were heard that the town cemeteries "Look like hell" according to Anthony Randall. The cemetery is being overrun with weeds and forget-me-nots.
Seabrook's wells are holding their own in the drought. Warnings to people violating the water ban appear to be working, and several back-up plans are being put in place in case the wells fail, including the possibility of building a desalination unit. The use of residential water meters continues to be deferred to the future.
The a section of the Lizzie Carr, a schooner that was wrecked off Concord Point in Rye in 1905 was salvaged.
Hampton was the focus of "Project Impact" a FEMA sponsored move to make towns more disaster resistant.
The Hampton Falls School Board met and dealt with numerous topics, including the arrival of Interim Superintendent David Brown, construction of a new school or improvements to existing facilities, the replacement of the old ventilation system, the budget, and the need for a new school secretary.
Hampton Seniors enjoyed the annual Strawberry Festival.
Ruth Leveille was welcomed as Winnacunnet High School's new Principal.
After an incredibly hot and news-worthy day on Tuesday, July 25, 2002, the Seacoast was struck by a most unusual and severe storm system which knocked out power in several areas. The worst reported damage covered by our reporters as the newspaper's deadline approached was a porch roof at Hampton Beach that was blown off, over the house it had been attached to, and landed on Ocean Blvd, taking out some power lines as it came down.
Earlier in the day, 31 illegal workers were arrested in Hampton Falls by the Immigration and Naturalization Service. The workers were employed by Morgado Paving, and will be repatriated to their homeland of Portugal.
A robbery took place at Granite Bank on Route 1 in Hampton on Noon, Tuesday. The robber, described as a white male with blonde hair and a light build in his mid to late 20s about 5'3" and 140 pounds got away with an undisclosed sum of money.
North Hampton's Assistant Principal Julie Heon is resigning from the school to take a position at Dover High School.
Cinnamon Rainbows Surf Shop and Hampton Recreation teamed up to teach children how to surf.
North Hampton Deputy Fire Chief Cory Landry and firefighter John Goodwin became the first North Hampton firefighters to have delivered a baby in the town's ambulance. The healthy little girl, named "Summer Storm" arrived a week early on July 18 as a downpouring storm was going through town.
North Hampton Selectmen dealt with a variety of issues, including the town website, the wording of the new anti-scavenging ordinance, compensation for the selectmen, and the rejection of an elevator bid.
The North Hampton Business Association have donated a number of lights to the North Hampton Bandstand to help illuminate the park. They would be installed by the end of summer, despite some holdups.
The Hampton Academy Junior High School asbestos abatement project is 'On Track'.
Breanne Marie Silvi of Nashua, NH was crowned Miss Hampton Beach 2002.
The drought continues to affect the Seacoast, as mandatory water use restrictions have been solidly put in place. Aquarion (The former Hampton Water Works) noting that its wells are operating at peak capacity enacted a complete ban on outdoor water use in Hampton, North Hampton, Hampton Falls, and the Jenness Beach area of Rye. Only water for drinking, laundry and cooking is allowed.
Despite the drought, the topic of mosquito control raised a buzz, as Hampton's Selectmen meeting, as they sought to have North Hampton participate more in the mosquito control program. North Hampton's recently completed Little River Salt Marsh Restoration is partly to blame, for while it has reduced flooding in neighboring Hampton communities, the water can pool during neap tide, creating places for mosquitoes to breed.
Hampton Falls Selectman Tom Beeler was appealing a "Cease and desist" order issued by fellow Hampton Falls selectmen Frank Ferreira and Maurice Caruso in regard to his business, Thomas P. Beeler Publishing, which specialized in large print books. The business is located in his barn behind his 23 King Street residence, which is apparently not zoned for business. While the business appears to have no negative impact on the community or violate Hampton Falls rules on Home Businesses, the zoning board opted to seek legal council before issuing a ruling at a future meeting in August or September.
Munsey Drive in Hampton is now officially on the map as a one-way street.
WHS Fall athletics were set to begin and the back-to-school sales are already underway.
Seabrook, still suffering from the drought, is seeking to meet the state's mandate of developing a plan for future water use and conservation. 18 test wells drilled at the beach have yielded clear, but salty water as the town considers building a $100,000 desalinization plant. Purchasing water from Aquarion was also considered.
North Hampton is working on widening and beautifying sections of Route 1. Senator Smith's clambake at Bicentennial Park in Hampton was well attended by veterans.
North Hampton made arrangements to spray for mosquitoes on the Little River Marsh to reduce the population of those pesky bugs.
A hot weekend brought droves of people to the beaches. Cool weather brought some relief by the middle of the week.
After a medical aid call at the North Hampton Bandstand during last week's concert uncovered some serious traffic and parking problems, North Hampton Police decided to start enforcing parking regulations at the green.
New Hampshire Insurance Department representatives visited Hampton to hear complaints from locals who cannot seem to get any insurance, or whose rates have risen to excessively high costs. Chiefly affected are those near the water, who are seeking flood and wind insurance.
Hampton's Marston School broke ground for a new playground.
The hot weather was perfect for the Hampton Beach Children's Festival.
Hampton was considering purchasing the old Employee Benefits Plan Administration (EBPA) building at 263 Drakeside Road for use as a community center. Ultimately it was deemed to large an investment.
A thunderstorm rolled through on Tuesday, providing little if any relief to the ongoing drought. Local officials met with Aquarion (the former Hampton Water Works) which assured them that while the situation has not reached crisis stage, they are trying to prepare for it. Seabrook selectmen are still trying to formulate a long-term water plan, and start work on a Federally mandate report on the quality of water being returned to the ocean and estuaries. Salisbury Mass has just imposed an outdoor watering ban. Water deprived plants and trees are wilting and adding to the possibility of fires this fall.
North Hampton Selectmen considered elevator bids for the town complex again, approved the anti-scavenging ordinance, and approved the purchase of new software for the town clerk who has been using DOS-based programs for some time. Also of note were complaints about the current meter situation at the North Hampton State Beach which is supposed to fund the cleaning of the beach- which has not happened lately, and is resulting in a terrible stench.
North Hampton Planning Board Chair Judy Day was reimbursed up to $5,000 for her arrest and charges of trespassing a year ago - an action carried out by a town business which was having problems with the planning board at the time.
An 11 year old boy narrowly escaped death at Hampton Beach when a 5-foot deep hole he and his brother were digging collapsed on him. Rescuers dug him free, and rules against digging such holes will be more strictly enforced.
Accidents are on the rise in North Hampton due to road work along Route 1/Lafayette Road.
Tom Gillick addressed the Hampton Capital Improvement Plan board, pointing out five areas where improvements were needed - the need for a senior citizen center; fire department upgrades; the completion of the "201" plan for sewerage on Ocean Blvd and King's Highway; a plan to manage funding; and debt management.
The Hampton Planning Board approved a telecommunications installation on the roof of 81 Ocean Blvd at Hampton Beach; changes for a condo on K Street; a US Gas station to be built on Lafayette Road; and heard strong opposition from abutters to Island Path who are opposed to the proposed boardwalk and education project there (although the topic was merely a permit application to do the work of developing a handicapped accessible boardwalk within the Wetlands Conservation District- approval of the actual construction will be approved by the selectmen) The permit was approved.
The Hampton Cable TV Advisory Committee requested $10,000 in funds for improvements to their current equipment - a sum the Selectmen approved, after noting areas in need of improvement, such as the computerized bulletin board which tends to crash on the weekends.
ACT ONE wrapped up their season with Bye Bye Birdie. The region was struck with a record-breaking heat wave which only added to the drought. It broke with small local showers, but more substantial rains are needed to relieve the current conditions. The Portsmouth area (Greenland, Newcastle, Newington, Portsmouth and Rye) have imposed an outdoor watering ban, joining the ranks of the Hampton, Salisbury and Newburyport areas.
Despite the heat, local events such as the Seabrook Old Home Days, the Hampton Beach Children's Festival, and the Downtown Hampton Sidewalk Sales Days Fair went off without a hitch. The surfing competition at Hampton's North Beach was called off though due to an acute lack of surf.
The North Hampton Library took part in celebrating the 100th birthday of the poet Ogden Nash, a longtime summer resident, who is being honored with a commemorative stamp. Mr. Nash currently resides in one of the town's cemeteries.
In Hampton, plans were unveiled for constructing a proposed playing fields on school-owned property near Batchelder's Pond area in Hampton. Development of this area would help relieve some of the crowding at Tuck and Eaton fields.
Volunteers began assembling Marston School's new playground equipment.
Citing the difficulties in storing and distributing the drug (permission slips would be needed) and that it was a family matter, local school boards refused to stock KI Pills, which can offset certain effects of radiation if there was an accident at Seabrook Station.
Elise Metahorakis was named Miss Seabrook 2002 and Jazmine Perkins was named Little Miss Seabrook 2002.
Seabrook and Stratham Ames stores are set to close as their parent company declared bankruptcy.
The Coach Company has discontinued it's Hampton to Boston run.
SAU 21 boards addressed the dispersion of the $400,000 in HealthTrust refund funds.
Seacoast Area Schools were back in session by Wednesday, August 28.
The Hampton Beach Seafood Festival was foreshadowed by fireworks at the Hampton Selectmen's Meeting when Gerald Dignam appeared to request certain safety, traffic and parking issues. While Dignam maintained a civilized tone, selectman Bonnie Searle, who is opposed to the town giving aid to the event and selectman Brian Warburton got into a shouting match. The issue was finally voted on, three for the event, Bonnie Searle against, and Selectman William "Skip" Sullivan abstaining due to his connections with the event.
Due to the drought, Aquarion has activated its only two emergency wells. The company is also working hard to identify and warn people who are not following the restrictions currently in place.
A recent survey indicates that most parents (85%) are satisfied with the quality of education offered at North Hampton School. Those who are not satisfied remain a very vocal group who have the full attention of a 'major' media outlet.
Dr. Carolyn Leick was confirmed and welcomed as North Hampton School's new Assistant Principal.
Across the Seacoast and the Nation preparations were underway to mark the first anniversary of the 9-11 Attacks.
The Seabrook Greyhound Track's Great Greyhound Race saw "Gable Vermelion" race away with the prize.
Russ McAllister, North Hampton's town manager is departing for the City Manager position in Rochester, NH.
North Hampton's firefighters were dispatched to aid in combating a blaze in New Durham NH. The fire began on Sunday, August 18 due to a lightening strike and lasted for the better part of a week, destroying 30 acres of dry woodland in the region.
The North Hampton Fire Department has installed a new exhaust system in the station for their fire trucks. The system vents the trucks exhaust outside so it won't pollute and dirty the interior of the station.
Four Russians were arrested for burglarizing an acquaintance's home at Hampton Beach.
The results of the Little River Marsh Mosquito Control effort and an overview of how the new drainage culverts are changing the area's biological makeup were noted. Since more salt water can get in now, freshwater plants are starting to die off in areas. The next tidal floods will occur on Sept 7, 8, 9, but this is rather late in the season for mosquito control, since most should freeze to death by the time they come out.
John Nickerson, a popular figure around town who has been suffering a prolonged illness was welcomed back to his Hampton cable committee duties.
The North Hampton Auto Show drove onto Dearborn Field.
The James House was the recipient of a granite post donated by the Syphers Monument Company.
It was "Business as usual" at Ron's Landing at Hampton Beach. The popular eatery was slated to close after the Seafood Festival to make way for a large time-share condo project, but due to a variety of delays, the project will not begin on time. Although the option for the builder has been renewed for one year, there is no indication when work on the condo will begin. By the end of 2002, no work had begun, and Ron's Landing remained open for business.
Seabrook Beach was considering a plan for beach management and sustained maintenance.
Seabrook's wells are continuing to go down due to the drought, and one has been shut down completely. The town plans to purchase water in the fall to help revive the wells. A few days of showers brought some relief to the region but much more is still needed.
At the final regular concert of the season at the North Hampton bandstand, North Hampton businesses were honored for their outstanding landscapes.
An unusually large accumulation of seaweed took place at Plaice Cove on the Hampton-North Hampton border, reaching three to four feet in thickness in some areas
North Hampton Forever was honored with an award from the NH State office of planning.
Tuck Museum held a silent auction and pig roast.
Drug arrests were made in Seabrook and Hampton at the end of August, netting a number of drug traffickers. In North Hampton, a lone marijuana plant was discovered and confiscated by the police. The owner of this lost plant ought to go to the police station to reclaim their property.
The Hampton Men's Softball League wrapped up its summer season as E.F. Shea defeated O'Leary's Grille to become this year's champions.
Sacred Heart School of Hampton installed a new playground.
Ted Feigenbaum, the Seabrook Station Executive Vice President and Chief Nuclear Officer will be departing once the sale of the station to FPL Energy is complete.
Maurice F. Brown Jr, 84, of Hampton, passed away. He was an active member of the community, as a member of the American Legion Post #35, the Masons, and many other organizations.
Due to the high alerts caused by the anniversary of September 11, the Portsmouth Harbor Lighthouse Tour scheduled for September 15 has been canceled. Access to Fort Constitution is also off limits.
Local organizations across the country and the Seacoast observed the first anniversary of September 11.
Great weather welcomed the thirteenth annual Hampton Beach Seafood Festival.
The Island Path project dominated the Hampton Selectmen's meeting as the Conservation Commission and abutters argued their very opposed viewpoints. The decision of the evening was to put the decision off "Indefinitely". Chief among the concerns of the abutters is that the area was once a dump site, which has never been cleaned up - hence it is unsafe for children.
The sale of Seabrook Station is moving ahead. The station recently passed the 100 billion kilowatt hours milestone.
Tree care and light installations collided on North Hampton's North Hill, as the two projects are competing to work in the same space at the same time.
Bus issues were still plaguing Lincoln Akerman School, as the long routes are causing students to arrive late to school, and late to get home.
Primary Elections were held in New Hampshire on Tuesday, September 10. Among the results in contested contests: Craig Bensen got the nod as the Republican candidate for Governor. Local favorite Beverly Hollingworth lost in her bid as the Democrat's candidate for Governor, which will be Mark Fernald. Senator Smith was the first sitting senator to be defeated in a decade as Representative John Sununu won the right to seek that seat for the Republicans.
Cain's Car Care Center and Sagamore Golf Center had their projects approved by the North Hampton Planning Board.
Hampton Falls Selectmen dealt with a number of issues, including the installation of fire alarms in businesses along Route 1, the availability of KI pills, and the ongoing drought, to name a few.
North Hampton's Dearborn Park may be closed after dark due to reports of illegal activities taking place there in the night.
The NHSPCA held its annual Seaside Stroll for the Animals at Wallis Sands State Park in Rye.
KI (Potassium Iodine) Pills are now available for free to residents within a ten mile radius of Seabrook Station. Applications are available at town offices.
Breanne Marie Silvi of Nashua, who is Miss Hampton Beach 2002 didn't quite make it into Hollywood at a recent audition for a Clint Eastwood directed film.
A crime wave is striking businesses along the west side of Route 1 in Portsmouth, Rye, North Hampton and Hampton NH, as ten robberies of a similar nature have taken place in less than one week. There have been no injuries reported, and the police were investigating.
The ducks and geese of the Lucky Duck Farm on North Shore Road have been accused of 'fowl' behavior as they have been caught in neighbors yards and crossing the road in flocks of up to 30 birds. While the owners indicated that the situation was not all it was 'quacked' up to, there is little that the Police can do so long as the birds do not present a health hazard.
The Hampton Conservation Commission was seeking ways to acquire open spaces in Hampton for preservation.
A set of ten lights was installed at North Hampton's North Hill common around the bandstand. They were turned on for the first time for the September 11 vigil.
The Hampton Seniors had their first meeting of the season.
A variety of changes were in store for the Hampton School Board to consider as the school year began. Among the options was a move to consider making Hampton Academy Junior High a "Full Fledged" middle school. Questions arose over HAJH's scheduling for its "Blue" and "White" teams.
Citing reduced demand, Aquarion has lifted its ban on hand-held watering.
Parking Meters have been removed from Rye, North Hampton and Hampton's North Beach. They are still in place from Great Boar's Head to the State Park, as are working change machines.
The Seabrook Station was safe and secure during Sept 11 and 13 during the 'Code Orange" alert.
Seabrook has officially declared a water emergency.
The Hampton Selectmen turned down the opportunity to purchase the former EBPA Building as a possible community center, citing that it was too much of a building for the town right now.
The North Hampton School's community service program received an upgrade. The program, which includes 6th, 7th, and 8th graders is seeking to expand on ways to aid the community.
Volunteers from across the Seacoast lent a hand to help out with the Coastal Cleanup on the Seacoast beaches.
The Seabrook Selectmen held one of their all too rare meetings to discuss beach maintenance.
The International Lighthouse Conference held in Bedford Mass honored the North Hampton School's Lighthouse Kids for their efforts to save the White Island Light at the Isles of Shoals. Due to the state of New Hampshire's neglect, the White Island Light is considered the most threatened lighthouse in all of New England.
Bob Ruuest voiced his concerns over possible parking problems posed at the Governor Weare Park at a recent Hampton Falls Selectmen meeting.
Hampton Selectmen will leave the issue of setting aside funds for the Conservation Commission to purchase open spaces to the voters. The $4 million warrant article will be presented in March.
According to Tom Gillick, Chairman of the Capital Improvements Plan (CIP) Committee, the committee could wrap up its work with only two more brief meetings, one of which would review the impact fee proposal task that the town has entered into with Bruce Mayberry, Planning Consultant, of Yarmouth, Mane.
North Hampton Selectmen dealt with a variety of issues, including the proposed removal of No Parking signs on Birch Road; the alleged 'scam' by AT&T which is sending out "Free" TV Guides to residents and then charging them for it; a Candidates Night to be held at the North Hampton School on October 15 from 7 - 8:30 pm; two applicants for the town manager position being vacated by Russell McAllister; and repairs to Cedar Road bridge to reopen it to traffic.
The Seacoast Academy of Music was thriving as it celebrated its one year anniversary of its founding.
The Winnacunnet High School welcomed the extensive renovation of the school's fitness room.
The Hampton Recreation Men's Softball League started off it's all-new fall season.
Hampton selectmen approved health agency and fire department budgets for the warrant articles.
Thomas T. Beeler, Chairman of the Hampton Falls board of Selectmen has resigned his post as the town's Zoning Board has cited his Large Print publishing business which he runs out of his home with a non-specific violation. Beeler, who has appealed with no success, and claims he is being singled out because he is a selectman is trying again, this time with his lawyer.
Winnacunnet High School is again putting their expansion plans on the ballot. This is the third try for an expansion at the overcrowded school, which is trying to cope with expensive modular classrooms.
Seabrook hoped to get some relief for the town's stressed wells with the use of an emergency well off Susan Lane.
Residents were warned of a healthcare insurance telephone scam currently underway.
Jean Keefe was honored for her 25th year of employment at the Lane Memorial Library.
The Seacoast Business Alliance Corporation has purchased the former QA Technology Building at 4 Merrill Industrial Drive in Hampton to lease to small and emerging businesses.
Traffic was tied up from the Hampton-North Hampton border on Route 1 well into North Hampton on Monday as road crews made a herculean effort to repave that vital roadway. They did a fine job by the way.
The Seacoast observed Fire Prevention Week (Oct 6-12) as firemen visited with schools and students to advise them of proper fire safety.
With chilly damp weather, and an abundance of Halloween decorations, there can be no doubt that Fall is here.
Peter Robart was named as Hampton Falls interim selectman following the resignation of Thomas Beeler last week. It was also announced that Rod Vigneau would be hired at the town's new Building Inspector.
A "Walk by the Sea Against Brain Injury" was held at Hampton Beach which raised $33,000 for the cause.
The question of a tax abatement request by the Winnacunnet School District was discussed by the Hampton Selectmen concerning a parcel of land at 23 Landing Road which was purchased for expansion of the school.
Hampton Recreation and Parks Director Dyana Lassonde received double honors recently from both the New England Park Association (NEPA) and the New Hampshire Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (NHAHPERD).
The Lincoln Akerman School of Hampton Falls recently finished renovations on their ventilation system. Most reported an improvement in the school's air quality, save for the second floor classrooms, which may have been cause by unseasonably warm weather we had recently.
Hampton's Cable Advisory Board submitted a set of proposed operational guidelines and policies for the use of the town's Government and Education access channel (22 in Hampton only) to the selectmen. On a related note, Seabrook is getting ready to have live TV coverage with their public access channel (22 in Seabrook).
Sacred Heart School hosted a G-Scale train display in their gym over the weekend as a fun fund raiser.
Federal funding to the tune of two million dollars has been set aside for New Hampshire Fisherman impacted by the draconian fishing rules imposed in the spring.
SAU 21 was exploring some restructuring possibilities, where the two curriculum development positions would be eliminated to make way for two assistant Superintendent positions, one which would represent North Hampton and Hampton Falls, the other Seabrook and South Hampton, while the Superintendent focuses on Hampton. Currently, the Superintendent has to attend two to four hour long evening meetings with the local school boards up to five nights a week after putting in a hard day's work. It is hoped this change will encourage more applicants to the position now being filled by interim superintendent David Brown.
Seabrook's emergency well was operating, and it is hoped that it will help revitalize local overburdened wells. However, it will run for only one year, and options are being considered for Seabrook's long-standing water shortage problems.
Many local meetings were not held on Monday due to the Columbus Day Weekend/Holiday, resulting in a shortage of notable news! The Holiday brought about severe traffic congestion on the southbound I-95 reaching from the Hampton Tollbooths to the Portsmouth Traffic Circle (about 9 miles!)
With elections looming, politicians seeking office are trying to look their best as local Supervisors of the Checklists meet.
The Seacoast woke up on Wednesday, October 23 to a very early snowfall. While it did melt away quickly, temperatures remain frigid to say the least.
The official tax rate for Hampton was announced as a 98 cent increase for the town. Figures released include $25.14 for the town, $26.73 for the precinct, and $25.48 for the partial precinct.
In North Hampton some 86 dogs were tracked down by the police for not renewing their licenses by April 30th. No fines were issued, and it provided officers an opportunity to patrol areas not on the usual route.
The Hampton school board heard preliminary reports regarding third grade performance on exams taken in May 2002 as part of the New Hampshire Educational Improvement and Assessment Program (NHEIAP). Overall there was "A positive set of results" in Hampton -admittedly a rather standard answer for standardized testing. The North Hampton School board also heard their results of the test as well, where students taking the test scored above the state average as well.
The Winnacunnet School Board revisited the Home Schooling Policy. Home-schooled students will now have the right to try out and/or join Winnacunnet co-curricular programs and sports according to the revised policy which is expected to be adopted this week.
Hampton Academy Junior High School and Winnacunnet High School students met to paint 100 storm drains with the note that the drains empty into waterways as part of a Senior Seminar project.
The Hampton School Board considered scheduling and send-home surveys.
Thanksgiving can proceed as planned at SAU 21 schools as it was reported that the school had not purchased any of the tainted turkey which was recently recalled.
Visitors to White's Lane will now enjoy a clear path while walking between Barbour Road and Mill Roads, and will have the opportunity to learn a few things as well. As Eagle Scout Austin Bashline, with the help of his fellow scouts in Troop 176, took on the challenge of cutting and clearing a path through the woods and cleaning the surrounding areas. With the help of Parker Survey volunteers, Austin arranged for the perimeter of the property to be marked, and with the assistance of A.J. Dupere of the Division of Forest and Lands at the Urban Forestry Center, Austin identified 15 types of trees along the way.
As a bitterly cold Halloween hit the Seacoast, politicians of all sorts were pulling their usual tricks of the trade as Election Day loomed. Congressman John Sununu, Governor Jeanne Shaheen, and Libertarian Ken Blevins faced off in one of the final breakfast debates of the season at Hampton Beach's Ashworth by the Sea hotel on Tuesday, hosted by the Hampton and Exeter Chambers of Commerce. The results of the breakfast debate exit poll: 56 percent of the votes were for Sununu; 43 percent for Shaheen; and one percent for Blevens. Due to the untimely death of Minnesota's Senator Wellstone, the race for the Senate has risen to one of critical national importance. Supporters of the defeated Republican Bob Smith are attempting to have a write-in for him, even as President George W. Bush plans on making his first ever flight into Pease International Tradeport in Newington NH (as President) to lend a hand to the Sununu cause.
Representative Mike O'Neil appeared before members of Hampton's board of selectmen Monday to "clear up" the intent of legislation regarding a bill filed for the Town of Hampton Real Estate Trust Fund.
Roads and requests filled the time on North Hampton's selectmen as residents of Birch Road sought the removal of "No Parking" signs. Repair work on the Cedar Road bridge is complete, but opening of it will be delayed until Route 1 construction is wrapped up.
In the tradition of defending Native American rights, the Winnacunnet High School's mascot, a "Warrior" evoking the image of an American Indian came under fire at a school board meeting. While some options were considered, no-clear cut solution was offered, and it is likely that the mascot Warrior will remain in place. The mascot had no comment for the media on the issue.
Trashy talk filled North Hampton as Coastline Waste Services offered a new contract to the Selectmen for waste removal. Currently trash disposal is contracted out to Waste Management.
FEMA gave Seabrook Station and surrounding communities positive marks for a recent drill held on October 23 at a sparsely attended Seabrook Selectmen meeting.
Marston School is currently holding a series of fundraisers to raise money for new playground equipment.
Rockingham County Treasurer Edward "Sandy" Buck declared the county's state of finances was in "Good Shape".
Winnacunnet Students taking a recent evaluation test saw a slight dip in their performance. Also of note, the dropout rate at WHS has decreased significantly.
Tuesday's elections saw the Republican Party make large gains as they seized virtually every major office up for election in the state of New Hampshire. Nationally, they reclaimed the Senate and retained control of the House of Representatives. Voter turnout nationally was very high.
Seabrook Town Manager, Russ Bailey will resign from his position, but will be taking a position other than Town Manager. Head of the Emergency Management Department, Joe Tibone will take over as manager in the meantime until the town Selectman have hired a new manager, which can be expected in two or three months.
Hampton Police Department Lieutenant William Lally, retired as of October 31. Lt. Lally has left his place at the HPD to become the Director of Training for the Lowell, MA Police Department. Lally's three decades of work for the HPD will end, and he will assume his new duties in Lowell November 12.
At the weekly Hampton Selectmen's meeting, Vic Lessard, trustee of the $15 million trust fund, brought up the discussion on a proposal of former state senator Bob Preston that the town could save interest by borrowing from the fund. The first funds were received by the trustees in 1984 in the amount of $1.7 million and has now grown to just over $15 million. Over the seventeen years of existence , nearly that much ($14,679,266) has been returned to the general fund for the purpose of reducing taxes.
North Hampton's Cedar Hill Bridge was reopened. The old railroad bridge had been closed to traffic due to structural concerns and heavy truck traffic using it.
Hampton's Lane Memorial Library's "Dalton Gang" were noted for their ongoing work in sorting out the library's vast photo collection - a collection which has recently received a large donation from the Atlantic News old photo archives. Volunteers are still sought to help sort out these and old newspapers.
Inside Story, a new furniture store in Hampton Falls opened its doors for business. Howard McGee, the owner and publisher of the Atlantic News celebrated his 60th birthday on November 5. A lifelong Republican, we imagine he could not have gotten a much better gift than having the Republicans sweep into office on his Birthday.
Seacoast Veterans were honored across the Seacoast at schools and ceremonies as Veterans Day was observed. The U.S. Marines also celebrated their birthday this week.
The Hampton Planning Board unanimously approved the Capital Improvement Plan before a standing room only audience.
Hampton Falls Selectmen heard a number of reports. The Fire Department reported a successful Fire Prevention Week Open House, and that the trucks were all winterized. The Police noted a number of thefts from cars, and warned residents to please lock their unattended car doors. Tax bills have also been sent out in Hampton Falls.
A very special celebration took place at Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal Church in Hampton, when Sister Lorraine Trombley celebrated 50 years of life and service as a Sister of Mercy.
Hampton resident Ralph Fatello received the George Washington Honor Award for his entry in this year's Freedom's Foundation National Awards Program.
The North Hampton Planning Board met during the elections. The top item that was discussed was the construction of a telecommunications tower that would allow Verizon Wireless to provide digital cellular service along I-95. The application for this project was submitted in March 2001 and has met with some delay due to the tower's location- North Hampton would prefer to have it built on town land so that revenues generated by it could go towards reducing the tax rate. No final decision was made, and the matter will be brought up at the December board meeting.
After canceling the championship game on November 4, the two leading teams in the Hampton Men's Softball League faced off on Tuesday, November 5. Phillips Brothers Electric won their first game against Cedar Hill, but Cedar Hill rebounded to win the next two games, and seize the Fall 2002 Championship. Congratulations to all who played!
In a recent hearing, the court case involving the Winnacunnet Cooperative School District vs. the Town of Seabrook was determined earlier this week with the Supreme Court ruling in favor of Winnacunnet. The resolution came as a result of an issue that was brought up in May, 2000, when Robert Ciandella, Seabrook's Town Counsel, informed the board members that Seabrook was considering avoiding its May assessment payment of $307,050. Seabrook defended its action, claiming a review of its taxing processes and commitments, as well as the historical record that showed how Winnacunnet Cooperative School district, revealed an overcharge for capital expenditures totaling $341,636 over the last three years.
Monday's meeting of the Hampton board of selectmen started out with apologies from three of the board members for unrelenting, uncivilized words that were used at the board's last meeting two weeks ago. Selectman Bonnie Searle said that while the apologies had been made to the community by members of the board of selectmen, she had not gotten any apology. Board members also mentioned their complaints about anonymous letters that were being received.
The Seabrook school board meeting that was held on Tuesday, November, 12, and had various items of interest that were covered. For starters, the confirmation that recalled Wampler Foods/Pilgrim's Pride Turkey Products that were reportedly tainted with bacteria were not distributed to public schools within the SAU. Secondly, the restructuring plan of the SAU21 school districts were discussed. This plan will hire two new assistant superintendents to divide the responsibilities amongst the six schools. The mood of the meeting was quickly changed as the NHEAIP results for the middle school were discussed. The scores were very low, but the third grade NHEIAP results had improved, so teachers and members of the community are hopeful.
Austin Warner Bashline became the first Scout of Hampton Troop 176 to achieve the rank of Eagle Scout.
An introductory offer for the Winnacunnet High School building and renovation project was presented to school board members and administrators by Architect Frank P. Marinace. The project, which was denied by voters in two previous attempts at passage, will be put before voters in the SAU21 District towns in March 2003. The major improvements that that will be made include gymnasium, which in the current proposal will extract the indoor track, add more space for PE and health classes, larger cafeteria, new science labs, and an additional 11 classrooms to replace the current modular classrooms.
Hampton Falls police have received a numerous calls in the past several days about telemarketers claiming to represent the Hampton Falls police department, the Hampton Falls Police Association, and the Hampton Crimeline. According the president of the Crimeline and the Chief of Police in Hampton Falls, there are currently no fundraisers ongoing for either of the organizations.
An informal meeting was held at the Lane Memorial Library for residents to view a sketch of a proposal concerning the Bachelder Pond area. The area in question is a 32.2 acre plot of land off of Towle Farm Road that includes the 1-1/2 acre Bachelder Pond. The sites includes space for soccer, baseball/soccer fields, and playing courts for basketball and tennis. A possible future elementary school, additional parking areas, and an access road intersecting at Towle Farm Road are included in the plans.
A new Town Parks Ordinance was passed by North Hampton selectmen last week that should help to control vandalism, littering, and other illegal activities in two of the town's public gather areas. Under the new ordinance Dearborn Park will be closed to public use from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. except in emergencies. During those hours, no motor vehicles are permitted to be parked at the park. The use of alcoholic beverages is prohibited. In addition, the new ordinance states that group activities will be allowed only when sponsored by a responsible agency and only with permission from the town.
At a brief Seabrook Town meeting, the only appointment was that of a beach resident voiced his concerns caused by feral cats roaming the beach. Board Chairman, Karen Knight explained that all cats were required to be registered and licensed. All other cats would be picked up by the town animal control officer. Knight also gave a brief review of the budget to date. Major budget items concerned the fire department. They approved the addition of one firefighter per shift, purchase of a new ambulance, and a "turn out" vehicle for call firefighters. The short meeting was ended with the signing of water and sewer warrant, permits and utility pole license. In addition Knight also stated that a temporary topping will be put down to clean up the mess caused by the construction on Route 1.
A five car pileup took place at the Hampton Toll Booths during the horrid snowy weather that hit the region on Saturday. The culprit, Christopher Ingalls, 37 of Salem was arrested at the hospital for DUI. There were no fatalities in the accident.
"Chez Boucher, A French Cooking School" is slated to open up in Greenland in January, and will be taught by Ron Boucher, the owner of the noted Hampton Beach restaurant, Ron's Landing at Rocky Bend. The restaurant remains open for business for the foreseeable future as no new developments of the proposed condominium project have materialized.
Despite the apparent demise of Pro Portsmouth, a "First Night" style New Year's celebration is being planned in Portsmouth.
The Seacoast celebrated a white Thanksgiving as a storm blanketed the region with snow the day before.
A number of North Hampton Parents voiced their concerns at a recent School Board meeting about the 2001-2002 NHEIAP scores. While the students results were above the statewide average, these concerned parents did not think that 'adequate' was enough.
The Seacoast Area Firefighters Toy Bank Chili Cook Off was a huge success, as the Toy Bank heads towards the Holidays.
Hampton Police are seeking Daniel E. Dame in connection to a number of daylight robberies.
Students at Lincoln Akerman School in Hampton Falls were happy to see the erection of a sugar house for their maple sugaring project.
The Neil Underwood Memorial Bridge of Route 1A/Ocean Blvd which spans the entrance to Hampton Harbor will be closed to marine traffic through December as it undergoes repairs. Traffic of Route 1A on the bridge will be restricted to one lane of traffic.
The Hampton Capital Improvement Plan Committee met with Selectmen to clarify certain aspects of their 2003 report.
The Seacoast Firefighters Toy Bank is generating a great deal of interest as the Holiday season kicks into high gear.
In the Hampton Selectmen's meeting room, a sign bearing the enigmatic number "14" was taken down at Bonnie Searle's prompting. Both Selectman Bonnie Searle and Jim Workman's terms in office expire in March 2003, some 14 meetings away from the meeting at which time this occurred.
A large number of hearty souls braved the frigid weather to take part in North Hampton's Tree Lighting and Carol Singing on Sunday.
For the next few meetings, Hampton Selectmen will consider warrant articles. Of note is a request to demolish the old town offices to make way for a recreation facility for Seniors and a communications system for the new Police Station.
Work on the new Police Station in Hampton has yet to begin as bids are expected to come in at the end of January 2003.
Seabrook Recreation planned a Youth Holiday Party and Holiday Dances.
The Seacoast welcomed Santa Claus at local Christmas parades in Hampton, Exeter, and Portsmouth among other places. He also attended Hampton's tree lighting, helping the local Seacoast Fire Fighter's Toy Bank at a special holiday brunch at The Old Salt in Hampton, and was seen doing last minute shopping at several craft fairs.
In Hampton, mysterious numbers kept on showing up around the town hall, this time as the numeral "10". One appeared in the clock behind Selectman Bonnie Searle's seat, and the key for the clock could not be found. Despite the mystery numbers, Hampton Selectmen examined about half of the 2003 warrant articles that will go before voters. Of note, $50,000 was requested by the police for a communications system, the demolition of the old town offices to build a Senior Citizen Center, and funds for the Conservation Commission made their way onto the warrants for voter approval. New recreation facilities at Tuck Field were voted down.
North Hampton's selectmen dealt with a number of topics ranging from taxes to technology. Resident Joe Arena took to the floor to denounce the state's still flawed education taxation system. A parcel of donated conservation property on Walnut Avenue was also dealt with despite having been left off the agenda. The Police and Fire Department have saved a total of $600 in the purchase of a new Dell server that will serve both departments.
Hampton Town Manager James Barrington received praise and a raise at the Selectman's meeting. His new salary is $84,623.
A considerable portion of the Seabrook Selectmen's meeting was taken up discussing ambiguous boundary lines at the beach between certain properties on Route 1A and town owned land. Interim Town Manager Joe Titone promised to look into it after a heated exchange cooled down.
The Hampton Falls School Board met for the last time in 2002. Of items discussed was an incident with inappropriate Instant Messages (IM) the students received via the internet, a situation that has been resolved by the police. The board also looked onto acquiring property to the east or south for future expansion of the school. The chief obstacle to this is the wetlands near the school.
Children at the Hampton Falls Free Library celebrated the Teddy Bear's 100th birthday.
Shana Gaston, Hampton's newest firefighter/EMT, was sworn in at the ceremony at the Hampton Town Office. Gaston also became the first female firefighter on the Hampton Fire Department.
North Hampton Cable-Broadband-Telecom Committee Chairman Bob Landman says he wants to send "a strong message" to AT&T -- that he is not happy with the cable service the company is providing to the town. Landman suggested the town invest $23,000 in a survey to determine what North Hampton residents and businesses would like to see possibly provide to then through an alternate cable service.
Hampton Board Selectmen Chairman Jim Workman has announced his intention to run for re-election to the board. Workman said his reason for running are a continuation of what he has attempted over the past three years, namely, to bring professionalism to the board, and to assist the board in looking at the "big picture."
Hampton school board member John Woodburn has announced his decision not to seek re-election to the board when Hampton voters go to the polls in March 2003. Woodburn, now completing his 10th term said, "Thirty years is long enough," he observed, referring to the amount of time he has been a board member. "It's a good time to step down."
At a Hampton Board of Selectmen's meeting, board members voted unanimously to renew the contract of Assessor Robert Estey for three years.
Winnacunnet High School students conducted a Christmas Shopping Child Care. The event enabled parents to drop off their children at Winnacunnet High School to about twenty-five student volunteers, so they could shop for their last minute Christmas gifts at local businesses around the Seacoast.
Salvation Army seeks help in assisting families on the Seacoast with Christmas dinners this year.
Thanks to the recent acquisition of 11 National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration weather radios, the town of Hampton is now one step closer to becoming New Hampshire's first community to be designated a Storm-Ready area by the National Weather Service. The seven-channel Radio Shack brand weather alert units, have been placed in the five schools located in Hampton, as well as in the town manager's office, the Lane Memorial Library, the fire and police stations, the public works office and the SAU 21 building.
The annual Seabrook Happy Seniors Holiday Luncheon was in full swing, when more than 165 members enjoyed a turkey dinner with all the fixings. The event, sponsored by Seabrook Greyhound Park, has been happening for 23 years.
The Victoria Inn, a century-old home restored in luxurious period fashion, will host the Hampton Area Chamber of Commerce "Business After Hours" On Wednesday, December 18 from 5:30-7:30 p.m.
At a recent change of command ceremony at the Civil Air Patrol's Northeast region Conference of Worcester, Massachusetts, North Hampton's Lt. Col. Margie L. Sambold was promoted to Colonel and assumed command of the wind from outgoing commander, Col. Kenneth J. Herman.
The Seabrook School Board's meeting on Monday, December 9 quickly moved into discussion regarding the new testing dispensed by the Seabrook Elementary and Middle School Faculties. The Northwest Evaluation Association tests were administered to grades four through eight in late November. The classroom teachers will take the score for each child and teach according to the child's individual needs. Two school warrant articles were also discussed at the meeting. The first was the need to complete the paving near the front of the building, and the second, plans of long-term maintenance of the building.
Santa Claus made some pre-Christmas Eve rounds throughout the Seacoast last weekend, by making stops in Hampton, Hampton Falls, and North Hampton. Santa started off on Saturday morning at the Hampton PTA annual Breakfast with Santa. Then Santa arrived in a fire-truck at the Hampton Falls Free Library. Finally, he appeared at the North Hampton town hall, where North Hampton police chief Brian Page estimated that "80, 90... maybe 100 people" had been to participate.
A late night four alarm fire on Christmas Eve destroyed the Port of Call Inn on F Street on Hampton Beach While it was brought under control, the fire was threatening the Hampton Beach Casino Ballroom and adjoining buildings. 12 people were left homeless due to the blaze.
Snow covered the Seacoast on Christmas Day, reaching depths of over ten inches, sometimes in drifts of 15 inches.