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Search locates Alabama man safely on shore after he tipped canoe on Winnisquam

LACONIA — Rescue vessels from the Fire Department, Gilford, the N.H. Marine Patrol and the N.H. Department of Fish and Game spent much of yesterday morning searching a northern portion of Lake Winnisquam for a canoeist who capsized.

N.H. Marine Patrol said Jaxson Kales, 19, of Alabama was found about one-third of a mile away, on land, about four hours after the search began. Authorities located him as a result of a door-to-door search.

Fire Chief Ken Erickson, who sent his and Gilford's fire rescue's boats into the lake said it was likely the man didn't know anyone was looking for him. He said the canoeist told officers the water was very cold and said he had to swim about 200 yards to get to shore.

At times Kales told police he didn't think he was going to make it.

Erickson said a Dennis Avenue man was fishing at 6:30 a.m. when he saw and spoke with Kales, who was paddling a red canoe.

About an hour after speaking with the canoeist, the fisherman saw the same canoe empty and upside down in the water along with a floatation devise.

The fisherman dragged the canoe and the life preserver to his own dock and notified authorities.

Kales told authorities he was not wearing a life-preserver.

Erickson said people who are using the areas lakes and rivers should realize that because of the late spring, the water is still very cold. He said all boaters should wear life preservers.


Last Updated on Wednesday, 11 June 2014 11:46

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Hosmer files, draws GOP opponent from Franklin

FRANKLIN — Andrew Hosmer of Laconia, a Democrat, yesterday filed for re-election to a second term in the New Hampshire Senate - District 7, while Kathleen Lauer-Rago, a Republican from Franklin who served one term in the New Hampshire House of Representatives, entered the race against him.

Lauer-Rago was elected to the House in the GOP landslide of 2010 and served as clerk of the House Education Committee. She is a director of the Network for Educational Opportunity, an organization seeking to expand parental choice in education, and has served with other nonprofit organizations. She is also a member of the Republican Liberty Caucus of New Hampshire, the National Rifle Association and the Franklin Targeteers. A native of Texas, Lauer-Rago earned an accounting degree at Texas A & M University-Kingsville and is a licensed Certified Public Accountant. She is married with three children.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 11 June 2014 11:38

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Council Rejects Firefighters Contract

LACONIA — The City Council last night unanimously rejected a tentative collective bargaining agreement negotiated with the Laconia Professional Firefighters, Local 1153 of the International Association of Firefighters.

City Manager Scott Myers advised the councilors against disclosing or discussing any details of the tentative agreement and reminded them that their authority is confined to the cost items of the agreement.

Councilor Henry Lipman (Ward 3), who chairs the Finance Committee, offered a motion to approve the proposed contract. He then said that he was "pleased with the progress of the negotiations" and generally satisfied with the wages and benefits that have been agreed.

However, Lipman said that he was concerned that the agreement exposed the city and its taxpayers to future liabilities, specifically the excise tax on so-called "Cadillac plans" imposed by the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Under the ACA, beginning in 2018 an annual excise tax of 40-percent will be levied on health insurance plans with premums exceeding $10,200 for an individual and $27,500 for families. Consequently he said that he could not endorse the agreement.

Lipman was echoed by Councilor Bob Hamel (Ward 5), who noted that while the cost-of-living adjustment and step increases in the agreement are "in line," the health insurance benefit is not.

Last month the Police Commission approved a wage and benefit package for non-unuion employees, which Chairman Warren Clement said was consistent with what the commission was willing to negotiate with the Laconia Police Association. At the same time, Myers asked the City Council to approve a compensation and benefits plan for non-union city employees.
Both include three successive annual cost-of-living adjustments (COLAs) as of July 1 of 2-percent in 2014, 2.25-percent in 2015 and 2.5-percent in 2016. Likewise, the health insurance plans would change with the elimination of the so-called HMO "high" plan at the end of the current fiscal year. Employees enrolled in the HMO 'low" plan, who currently contribute 9 percent of the total premium, will contribute 8 percent beginning on July 1 2014, 9 percent on July 1, 2015 and 10 percent on July 1, 2016.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 10 June 2014 12:52

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Gilford's Top 10 Seek careers ranging from investment banking to elementary education

GILFORD — The top 10 academic seniors at Gilford High School plan a variety of careers and, while they are looking forward to expanding their horizons as they attend college, say that they will miss their fellow classmates and continue to cherish the relationships they have formed with each other through their high school years.
Valedictorian Marissa Kelleher will attend Boston College, where she will major in finance and marketing. She says that she was inspired to seek a career in business after visiting the New York Stock Exchange as a freshman and chose Boston College because it has one of the best business schools in the country. She sees her future as becoming an investment banker.
Sally Tinkham , salutatorian, will attend Gordon College, a multi-denominational Christian liberal arts college in Wenham, Mass., where she plans to major in elementary education and psychology with a goal of teaching overseas, most likely in India and says that she has been inspired by the work of Dr. Donald Carey of Gilford in that country.
Rachel Blandford will attend the University of New Hampshire, where she will continue a family tradition by majoring in engineering. She says that she has always been interested in science and math and likes UNH because it is close to home and allows her to stay in touch with her family.
Sarah Cook plans to major in drama when she attends New York University and is looking forward to living in the big city environment with many creative people. She wants to become a director of stage productions.
Mikaela Mattice will attend the University of Western Ontario where she will attend business school and also pursue studies in medical services. She holds both American and Canadian citizenship and says that one of the attractions of the school she has chosen in London, Ontario, is that tuition rates are lower in Canada.
Kelsey Buckley will attend Wheaton College in Norton, Mass., where she will major in environmental science and will also study animal biology. ''I always wanted to be a vet when I was little and look to do something which will involve protecting habitat for wildlife,'' she says.
Emily Wernig will attend the University of New Hampshire where she will pursue a career in arts education and will also be a part of the women's track team. She said that she was inspired to pursue arts education by her grandmother, who told her to ''do something that you love or it will be hard to go work every day.''
Catherine Buckley plans on attending Roger Williams University where she will study architecture.''I've always enjoyed math and like to design things,'' she said, explaining that architecture will combine the two things she likes the most, art and design.
Michael Segalini will attend the University of Vermont in Burlington, Vt., which he says is the kind of city that a person from a rural community like Gilmanton will find very interesting. He is enrolled in the school of arts and sciences and has yet to decide on what field he will major in.
Amanda Lavin will attend West Virginia University where she will major in English and has the goal of becoming a foreign correspondent for an international news organization. She said that the challenge of attending a larger school than she has experienced to date is something which appeals to her.

Graduation exercises are scheduled for Meadowbrook on Saturday, June 14 at 10 a.m.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 10 June 2014 12:23

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