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Laconia produces lots of offense but Monadnock scores a lot more, 66-37

LACONIA —Monadnock Regional (Swanzey) stayed unbeaten (5-0) in NHIAA Division II football play last night by rolling past the Sachems at Bank of New Hampshire Stadium by a score of 66-37. The visiting Huskies scored two touchdowns on defense and another on a kickoff return.

Laconia (2-3) tried to spread out Monadnock's defense and move the ball with an aerial attack. The Sachems average eight to 10 pass attempts a game but threw the ball 48 times Friday night. Quarterback Matt Swormstedt completed 19 for 280 yards and two touchdowns but he was also victimized by four interceptions — one of which was returned for a pick six.

"We had breakdowns in every facet of the game," Laconia coach Craig Kozens said afterwards. "When the run wasn't going anywhere, we tried to spread the field and roll the dice. Unfortunately the dice don't always roll your way" Commenting on the four interceptions and fumble loss for a touchdown, Kozens said, "They took advantage of our mistakes. We just couldn't get it going the right way. I tip my cap to them. It doesn't get any easier for us next week (against 5-0 Plymouth)."

Laconia jumped out to a quick lead — scoring first for the fourth time in five games — when Swormstedt hooked up with Kyle Chiasson for a 48 yard strike one minute into the game. Monadnock would respond with a 25 yard field goal.

After Laconia went three and out on its next possession, Monadnock did not look back, scoring on a nine play drive capped off by a 31 yard quarterback keeper down the right sideline. Next, Laconia would fumble on the 31 yard line and watch Huskies Linebacker Drew Bolewski scoop up the loose ball and trot in untouched for the first of two consecutive defensive touchdowns.

Down 24-7, Laconia's Chiasson found the end zone for his second of three touchdowns on the night when he found a hole on the right side and sprinted 40 yards to paydirt. The Huskies would return the ensuing kickoff 90 yards for six of their own.

The Sachems dove down to Monadnocks 11 yard line, where the Huskies picked off Swormstedt on the three to end the threat. On the next play, trying to get out of the shadow of their own goal line, the Huskies tried to run off tackle only to be wrapped up for a safety by captains Steven Kemos and Jon Pelky.

Twelve points would be as close as the Sachems would get. The first drive for Laconia of the second half looked to be a three and out when they lined up to punt on fourth and one at their own 15 yard line. Only the snap went directly to Chaisson who rambled 85 yards for the touchdown.

Laconia would end up rushing for 157 yards on the evening. Swormstedt rushed for an 11 yard TD late in the fourth to cap off the scoring for Laconia.

Laconia looks to rebound from the loss, when they head to Plymouth to take on the Bobcats next Saturday at 1:30.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 31 December 1969 07:00

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Man injured in tractor accident

GILMANTON — Fire Chief Paul Hempel III said a local man was injured in a tractor accident while mowing a lawn yesterday afternoon.

Hempel said the man was on Guinea Ridge Road around 2:30 p.m. when the call came in.

He said he's not exactly sure what happened but said the mid-sized farm tractor was not running when emergency crews arrived.

He said the man was conscious and breathing. He was taken by ambulance to Lakes Region General Hospital in Laconia for evaluation.

Last Updated on Saturday, 05 October 2013 03:30

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LFD deputy chief leaving to take a top Dept. of Safety job

LACONIA — After nine years with the Fire Department, Deputy Fire Chief Deb Pendergast has been appointed director of the Division of Fire Standards and Training and Emergency Medical Services at the New Hampshire Department of Safety.

Pendergast alone among the 18 candidates for the position was nominated by Governor Maggie Hassan. She was unanimously confirmed by the Executive Council when it met last week. She will oversee both the Fire Academy, which serves as the Northeast regional training facility for Aircraft Rescue and Firefighting Personnel, and the Bureau of Emergency Medical Services.

A graduate of the University of Massachusetts, where she majored in psychology, Pendergast is pursuing a master's degree in pubic administration at the University of New Hampshire. She has spent two decades in the fire service. 11 with the East Derry Fire Department, where she rose to the rank of lieutenant, and the last nine as deputy chief in Laconia, joining the department as the highest ranking female firefighter in the state.

As deputy chief Pendergast secured more than $1.2 million in grants for the department, including most recently $642,000 from the Federal Emergency Management Agency to add four firefighters for two years.

City Manager Scott Myers said that "the state's gain will be Laconia's loss as she is a valuable resource for our community." The community, he noted, should be proud that "the governor thought highly enough of one our own to nominate her to this important position."

Last Updated on Saturday, 05 October 2013 03:24

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After towns react with alarm, 2 state agencies decide they can start setting tax rates in October after all

CONCORD — After announcing on Wednesday that the process of setting municipal property tax rates would not begin until November 7, the New Hampshire Department of Revenue Administration (DRA) yesterday backtracked in the face of widespread concerns among local officials.

We anticipated a reaction," said Commissioner John Beardmore of DRA, "but it was broader and more intense than anticipated." Beardmore said that in light of the reaction his department will begin setting tax rates between October 18 and 21, noting that typically the process starts in the middle of October and last year began on October 19.

State Senator Andrew Hosmer (D-Laconia) said that he heard from Laconia City Manger Scott Myers and town administrators throughout his district soon after the announcement and quickly discovered that his fellow senators were fielding similar calls.

Since the cash flow of cities and towns is at low ebb near the end of the year, the delay in setting the tax rates threatened to slow the process of billing and collecting the revenue required to replenish municipal coffers and fund operations for the next six months. Moreover, municipalities must pay their county apportionments in December. Counties finance a significant share of their operations by borrowing tax anticipation notes (TANs) that come due on December 31 and cannot be repaid without the revenue from the municipalities.

Municipal officials feared that if the setting of tax rates were deferred until November they would be unable to print and mail tax bills in time to collect sufficient revenue to fund operations and obligations without borrowing. At the same time county officials were concerned that cities and towns could find themselves unable to pay their apportionment in time for the county to repay its borrowing.

Hosmer said that there was also some concern for those who escrow their property taxes, explaining that if the bank or firm responsible for paying the taxes failed to mail the check before December 31, taxpayers' ability to claim a deduction on their 2013 federal income tax returns could be at risk.

DRA explained that the delay is the result of legislation enacted in 2012 that requires the New Hampshire Department of Education (DOE) to calculate the amount of state aid distributed to school districts on the basis of their enrollment in the immediately prior school year, not the enrollment of two years prior. In other words, the state aid distributed in the 2013-2014 school year will be calculated from the enrollment in 2012-2013 school year, not the 2011-2012 school year.
The DOE informed the DRA that it will not complete the calculations to measure school enrollment and apportion state aid until November 7, almost three months later than in the past.

Beardmore said that in response to the outcry, Virginia Barry, Commissioner of Education, agreed to provide DRA with estimated enrollments by October 11. He acknowledged that the estimates are subject to change, but described them as "reasonably accurate" and superior to any alternatives. He stressed that DOE "did nothing wrong, but was doing its best to calculate state aid in a compressed time frame."

Beardmore said that "we hope not to be in the same place next year when I hope we will have firm numbers as soon as possible." He said that since state aid to public increased in the wake of the Claremont decisions in the 1990s, this will be the first time tax rates have been set using estimated enrollment figures.

Hosmer said that he "commended commissioners Beardmore and Barry for making a quick about face and working with each other to resolve the situation." He suggested that "the Legislature may want to take another look at the law to what if anything can be done to improve the process."

Last Updated on Saturday, 05 October 2013 03:18

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