Contract to sell Elm Street lot to marina still in the works

LACONIA — City Manager Scott Myers said yesterday that the transaction conveying the city property now leased by Lakeport Landing, LLC to Irwin Marine has not yet been completed.

He said the attorneys for the city and Irwin Marine are "working through the details" of the transaction, which was approved by City Council on June 8. The marina agreed to pay $528,000 for the 0.81-acre strip of land and the 9,840-square-foot building the was constructed on it by Lakeport Landing.

"It (the agreement) is in its final form," Myers said who was given permission from the City Council to negotiate and execute the agreement. "But we have not given the final okay or executed it yet."

The questions about the timing of the actual transfer have become relevant because Erika Blizzard, the owner of Lakeport Landing, LLC., has filed suit in Belknap County Superior Court to ask a judge to review and rescind the City Council's actions in selling the property to Irwin Marine. Blizzard has questioned the legitimacy of the bidding process.

He said some of the conditions of the sale are that Lakeport Landing, despite the fact its 30-year lease on the land expires in October, can continue to use the property and showroom it built for up to two additonal years.

The annual rent of $8,750 which he said was renegotiated about five years ago, will continue to flow into the city coffers from Lakeport Landing in two yearly installments.

Myers said Irwin Marine will have a binding purchase and sales agreement in its possession and will be allowed to close the sale once the property has been vacated. The city will hold an undetermined amount of money in escrow until the final conveyance is completed.

Forrester already looking for Northern Pass 3; Hosmer endorses plan 2

MEREDITH — "It's a good start to get them to do more," said State Senator Jeannie Forrester (R-Meredith) in response to the Tuesday announcement by Eversource Energy Transmission Ventures, LLC that the Northern Pass project has been reconfigured to include more buried transmission lines, fewer utility poles and less transmitted power. "I look forward to the next new route," she remarked.

Bill Quinlan, president of Eversource operations in New Hampshire said yesterday that another 52 miles of transmission line through the western reach of the White Mountain National Forest between Bethlehem and Bridgewater will be buried along state highways. With a stretch of eight miles between Clarksville and Stewartstown also underground, the company proposes to bury 60 miles of the 192-mile project. Some 400 poles would be eliminated and instead of carrying 1,200 megawatts of power, the line would carry 1,000 megawatts.

"I appreciate the Northern Pass Project's effort to honor and protect New Hampshire's scenic landscapes with this latest route proposal, which buries more miles of transmission lines," Forrester said in a prepared statement. "Unfortunately, this latest route still seeks to build 40 miles of new power line that cuts through some of New Hampshire's most treasured landscapes," she continued. "Northern Pass also continues to seek authority to build power lines on private property without permission from the landowners. It's a good start, but I look forward to a future route proposal which will not infringe on property owners' rights or New Hampshire's scenic views," she said.

With 19 of the 31 towns in her Senate district affected by Northern Pass, Forrester has been in the forefront of resistance to the project for the past five years. In particular, she was the prime sponsor of legislation to strengthen the eminent domain statute to forestall the acquisition of private property for the project and has consistently called for burying the transmission lines.
State Senator Andrew Hosmer (D-Laconia), whose district includes Franklin where a terminal to convert the current from DC to AC would be built, welcomed the announcement.
In a prepared statement he said that "today's announcement by Northern Pass is a great step forward and I am pleased to offer my support for the project. In addition to the tremendous energy benefits this project provides to our state's economy," he continued, "this project will provide a transformational opportunity for the city of Franklin, create hundreds of jobs in our region, and provide a great boost to our local economy."

"I have long supported the opportunity this project brings to Franklin, but I have been concerned that other communities' needs also be considered," Hosmer said. "Today's announcement shows that the company has listened and I am pleased that many of the concerns have been addressed. I encourage Eversource and abutting landowners to continue to discuss opportunities to reduce the impact of the project and I look forward to a thorough evaluation of the project at the N.H. Site Evaluation Committee."

Burglar flees Batchelder Street home when confronted

LACONIA — City police are seeking information a daytime burglary of an occupied residence on Batchelder Street on July 30.

Capt. Matt Canfield said the occupant heard someone in the living room who in the process of stealing items from his home. The male subject fled after being confronted and took several of the occupants items with him.

The man is described as bean in his mid- to – late 20s, unshaven, with two "sleeve" tattoos on each arm.

The victim told police he got into a white car and fled toward Pine Street.

Police said this is the second similar burglary in the city within the past couple of months and are asking anyone with any information to call the Laconia Police at 524-5252.