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Barnstead man said to have breached bail conditions by contacting minor girl 4 times

LACONIA — A former Barnstead man was ordered held on $10,000 cash bail yesterday for failing to appearing in Belknap County Superior Court on Tuesday and for four counts of breach of bail.

Tyler Root, 32, was indicted by a Belknap County grand jury in August of 2013 for statutory rape for allegedly having sex with a girl who was older than 13 and less than 16.

Investigating officers learned Root had allegedly been in touch with the victim four times since his being indicted in August, with three of those contacts being in January of 2014, by examining the cell phone the girl was using that belonged to her mother.

In January, the girl's mother in January reported she had information that Root was in the area, possibly on Merrimac Street

Affidavits said city police learned from a different woman that Root has met with the girl while he was on Merrimac Street visiting a friend.

A Laconia Police officer spoke with Root on the phone and he denied having any contact with the girl. At that point, police applied for and secured an arrest warrant.

Sometime yesterday, police arrested Root — it is unclear if he turned himself in or if police found him in Laconia — and he appeared by video in the 4th Circuit Court, Laconia Division yesterday.

He is scheduled to appear in the Belknap County Superior Court today for matters relating to his felony rape charge.

The four bail violations are still in the Circuit Court's jurisdiction.

Last Updated on Thursday, 20 February 2014 01:59

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Inability to tax RVs permanently parked at campgrounds as real estate would cost Laconia $200k

LACONIA — City Manager Scott Myers said yesterday that a bill that would exempt recreational vehicles from property taxation could cost the city approximately $200,000 in annual property tax revenue.
Senate Bill 333, sponsored by Senator Jeanie Forrester (R-Meredith), exempts recreational vehicles that do not remain in any one town, city or incorporated place for more than 45 days, unless they are stored or placed on a rented campsite, from property taxation. The statutory definition of a recreational vehicle includes motor homes, vans, pickup campers and tent trailers as well as recreational trailers of 400-square-feet or less. The bill stipulates that recreational vehicles shall be deemed personal, not real, property and not liable to property taxation.
Myers estimated that as many as 400 properties in the city with an aggregate value of about $10 million would be exempted from property taxation if the bill succeeds. The bill carried the Senate by a unanimous vote of 24 to 0, but has not yet been introduced in the House of Representatives. Myers said that he intended "to put our local representatives on notice that this is a concern."
The issue arose from a court decision in 1999, which was reaffirmed in 2002, the New Hampshire Department of Revenue Administration began advising cities and towns to tax recreational vehicles as real property. The result was what Forrester called a "crazy quilt" as recreational vehicles parked at campgrounds were treated differently by different municipal assessors. Some are taxed as real property while others are not. Some municipalities bill the owners of the recreational vehicles while others bill the owners of the campgrounds.

In a prepared statement issued after the vote in the Senate, Forrester said that "the inconsistent application of our tax code causes confusion for businesses across our state, and the patchwork of laws that have applied to campground owners in recent years has been among the worst. By clarifying the legislature's intent on these laws," she continued, "it is my hope that the owners of the state's 117 private campgrounds will have the stability and clarity they need to operate their businesses without undue burdens from state government.

Last Updated on Thursday, 20 February 2014 01:52

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Fair at Belknap Mill seeks to connect young professionals with volunteer opportunities

LACONIA — The first Fusion NH non-profit fair was held yesterday at the Belknap Mill as a way to let people know what non-profits are doing around the Lakes Region and how they can help their efforts through volunteer work.

The initiative grew from a state program known as Stay Work Play and Fushion NH's mission is to keep young people in New Hampshire and to education them on the numerous opportunities available to them, according to their Website.

Nearly 20 non-profits as diverse at Rich Velasquez Youth Sports Equipment Foundation to the Belknap Economic Development Council had booths set up and provided information for those who cam to the four-hour fair.

"We want to remind people of the non-profits in the area and encourage people to volunteer or sign up to be board members," said Beth San Souci, the head of Fusion.

She said the fair, which they hope will become an annual event, is to make people aware of how many non-profit agencies there are and how they are helping to make people's lives better.

She also said the fair is a way of attracting new and younger residents of the area to come and to volunteer their time.

"Our focus is on the next generation of leaders," she said.

Also represented yesterday were Faith, Hope and Love, PICK or People Investing in Community and Kids; Hands Across the Table, Lakes Region Community Services, Leadership Lakes Region; the N.H. Humane Society; the Greater Lakes Region Child Advocacy Center; the Circle program, Prescott Farm; the New Horizons Band; the Laconia historical and Museum Society, Kiwanis; and the Network for Educational Opportunity.

 

Cutline (Belknap Mill Fusion) About 20 local non-profit agencies represented by about 40 of their volunteers held the first Fusion non-profit fair at the Belknap Mill yesterday.

Last Updated on Thursday, 20 February 2014 01:43

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Lawmaker & sheriff trade verbal blows after meeting of Belknap Convention

LACONIA — Civility has hardly been a hallmark of the proceedings of the Belknap County Convention and this week's meeting, featuring two sharp exchanges, was no exception.

Rep. Richard Burchell (R-Gilmanton), not one to shrink from confrontation, figured in both encounters. After the meeting adjourned Burchell berated Glen Waring, the county finance director, for reminding Rep. Colette Worsman, who chairs the convention, that after indicating she intended to open floor to the public she adjourned the meeting without doing so.

Later that night Burchell upbraided Sheriff Craig Wiggin for calling Worsman's attention to a telephone call from Rep. Dennis Fields (R-Sanbornton), who was under the impression the meeting had been postponed because of the weather.

In an e-mail sent at 10:33 p.m., Burchell told Wiggin that his "interruption at the conclusion of tonight's county meeting was inappropriate. County personnel," he continued, "are at the meeting to facilitate the meeting for the convention" and "should not interrupt the proceedings other than when recognized by the chair." He went on to say that "it gives the appearance of bias when a county officer such as yourself tries to intervene in a political circumstance."

"May I remind you," Wiggin shot back at 11:20 p.m.," I am not just another of those 'county personnel as you call them; I am also an elected official." He explained that he was "merely relaying a message from one of your colleagues" and retorted "I need no lectures from you Sir, especially given the fact that these painful meetings apparently have no established rules of order."

Less than 15 minutes later Burchell replied that "my statement was intended to be factual and I believe that it was." Far from operating without rules, he claimed that the convention followed "Concord rules," which in turn are based on Mason's Manual of Legislative Procedure. "Apparently, and based on your prior comments," he told Wiggin, "you are of the opinion that running (for office) as both a Democrat and Republican elevates your status; it does not." In closing he reminded Wiggin to "confine you comments at meetings of the convention to pertinent facts when recognized by the chair."

Burchell and Wiggin both forwarded the chain of e-mails to The Daily Sun.

Last Updated on Thursday, 20 February 2014 01:34

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