Children's Auction hands out checks for $92,200

LACONIA — The Greater Lakes Region Children's Auction distributed checks for $92,200 to 16 different organizations which provide services to young people Wednesday afternoon at the Belknap Mill.
Auction chairperson Sandy Marshall said that the 2016 auction raised $452,706 and that the Greater Lakes Region Charitable Foundation for Children received requests for $742,083.
"I wish that we could have fulfilled every one of those requests," said Marshall, who was assisted during the check presentation by Tony Felch of the auction disbursement committee.
One process A recipient was present for the presentation, the Saint Vincent DePaul Society, which received $20,000.
Other recipients were:
Belknap Mill Society, $5,000
Boys & GirlsClub of the Lakes Region, $20,000
Boys & GirlsClub of Franklin, $5,000
Child & Family Services of NH, Camp Spaulding, $5,000
Gilford Youth Center, $5,000
HealthFirst Family Care Center, $5,000
Holderness Recreation Department, $1,000
Laconia Baseball Foundation, $2,200
Mayhew Program, $5,000
Merrimack Valley YMCA, $5,000
Pittsfield Youth Workshop, $2,000
Spaulding Youth Center Foundation, $5,000
Tapply Thompson Community Center, $5,000
Stilton/Northfield Recreation Council, $2,500
WinnAero, $2,000
Process A organizations were awarded $154,900 in December, and Process B organizations were awarded $191,423 on Feb. 1, the same date that process C organizations received $33,683.
The largest Process A checks went to Got Lunch! Laconia, $35,000, the Santa Fund of the Greater Lakes Region, $25,000 and the Salvation Army, $15,000. Largest Process B checks went to Lakes Region Child Care Services, $35,000; the Lakes Region Community Services Family Resource Center, $25,000, and the Appalachian Mountain Teen Project, which received $25,000 in Process B and $10,000 in Process C.

02-15 Childrens Auction checks
The Greater Lakes Region Children's Auction distributed checks for $92,200 to 16 different organizations which provide services to young people in the Lakes Wednesday afternoon at the Belknap Mill. (Roger Amsen/for The Laconia Daily Sun)

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Here’s how your local reps voted on Right to Work


CONCORD — State Rep. David Huot of Laconia, alone among the 17 voting members of the Belknap County delegation, voted with the majority when the New Hampshire House of Representatives scuttled the Right to Work bill on Thursday by a vote of 200 to 177. Following the vote to scrap the bill, a motion to indefinitely postpone it carried 193 to 184, ensuring that the House will not not consider the issue again soon.

While Huot twice voted with the majority, the remaining 16 representatives from the county — all Republicans — consistently voted with the minority. They were: Marc Abear and Herb Vadney of Meredith, Glen Aldrich and Norm Silber of Gilford, Barbara Comtois of Barnstead, Dennis Fields and Tim Lang of Sanbornton, Robert Fisher, Donald Flanders and Peter Spanos of Laconia, Valerie Fraser of New Hampton, Ray Howard and Peter Varney of Alton, Michael Maloney of Gilmanton, and John Plumer and Michael Sylvia of Belmont.

In January, the New Hampshire Senate passed the bill by the narrowest of margins, 12 to 11. Gov. Chris Sununu counted Right to Work legislation among his highest priorities, claiming that it would attract new businesses to the state and increase opportunities for employment.


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Housing Authority plans to convert office building at city's primary intersection into assisted-living apartments

LACONIA — The Laconia Housing Authority, which owns and operates Sunrise Towers, is seeking to purchase the lot and building in its shadow on the southeast corner of South Main Street and Union Avenue, which was long home to Melcher & Prescott Insurance and most recently Re/Max Bayside.

Dick Weaver, executive director of the agency, told the City Council this week that the agency has an opportunity to acquire the property from Melcher & Prescott, which moved across the street several years ago, with the help of a  Community Development Block Grant and funding from the New Hampshire Housing Financing Authority. He asked the council to authorize City Manager Scott Myers to write to the New Hampshire Community Development Finance Authority indicating that the agency's grant application enjoyed support from the city. Myers said that the letter falls short of sponsoring the Laconia Housing Authority's grant application, a step the council may be asked to take at a later date.

Despite misgivings voiced by Councilor Bob Hamel (Ward 5), the council directed Myers to write in support of the application. Hamel expressed concern that a significant portion of the housing stock in the city, including much of what has been constructed in recent years, is intended for low and moderate income residents. "It's way out of balance," he said. Referring to impact on the demographic profile of the city, he said "right now it's ground zero here."

Weaver told the City Council this week that the property would serve as an annex to Sunrise Towers by providing 18 one bedroom assisted living apartments, all handicapped accessible, on two floors for residents aged 62 and older. Weaver said that he anticipated the building would house low-income and disabled residents. He explained that the building is within easy reach of the supportive services department at Sunrise Towers, which would provide its residents assistance with meals, housekeeping, laundry, personal care and nursing services.

Built in 1969, the building has 8,672-square-feet of living space, evenly divided between two stories as well as a finished basement of 4,136-square-feet. It sits on a 0.46 acre lot, which includes 10,000-square-feet of paved parking area. Weaver said the agency will add an elevator shaft to the building. He assured the council the building would remain on the tax rolls. The property is assessed for $641,400 and listed for sale at $599,000. Weaver told the council it has recently been appraised for "much less."

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