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Jim Chase will finish out year as principal of Elm Street School

LACONIA — Elm Street School Principal Kevin Michaud will resign from the Laconia School District effective February 21 for family and health reasons, said Superintendent Terri Forsten yesterday. He became principal in July of 2012.

Beginning on March 11, the retired Laconia High School Dean of Students/ Athletic Director Jim Chase will serve as interim principal until a permanent replacement for Michaud's can be hired.

Forsten said Chase was an elementary school teacher for most of his career. He began teaching at Elm Street School and was at one time the principal of the Pleasant Street School.

The search for a new principal will begin in March and Forsten said she anticipates a new one will be hired by the beginning of July.

Michaud came to Laconia from Milton, where he was an assistant principal at both the elementary and middle/high schools. Prior to that post, he build a considerable resume in the State of Maine.

Last Updated on Thursday, 13 February 2014 01:08

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Hosmer bill addresses workplace protections for victims of domestic violence; hearing held

CONCORD — Legislation that would prohibit employers from discriminating against victims of domestic violence while requiring them to provide them reasonable protections in the workplace, sponsored by Senator Andrew Hosmer (D-Laconia) was heard by the Senate Judiciary Committee yesterday.

Hosmer, who served as an assistant district attorney before joining AutoServ, his family's automobile dealership, said that handling domestic violence cases gave him insight into a cycle of violence that many victims cannot escape. "One of the biggest factors that prevented victims from fully and completely separating from their abusers," he continued, "was their inability to achieve or maintain economic independence. " He explained that abusers often interfere with their victims' work environment and by jeopardizing their employment increase the likelihood they will return to their abusers.

"Nearly three-quarters of abused women reported being harassed by the partner while at work," Hosmer said. "Victims should not have to continue suffering in silence due to thefear they have of losing their jobs."

Seven states have enacted similar legislation to protect victims in the workplace, Hosmer said. .Senate Bill 390 would forbid discrimination in hiring as well as in the terms and conditions of employment.

It would also require an employer to make "reasonable safety accommodation" for a victim of domestic violence unless it could be demonstrated that doing so would "impose an undue hardship of the operation of the business." Hosmer said employers could request victims of domestic violence to produce police reports, restraining orders or other appropriate documentation to confirm their status and qualify for a protective accommodation. Accommodations could include changing telephone numbers, e-mail addresses or work stations.

Hosmer said that he was encouraged by yesterday's hearing. He said that after conducting what he called "an informal poll" of businesses he found most employers "favorable." The bill, he said, "is not onerous, but strikes a balance."

Last Updated on Wednesday, 12 February 2014 12:59

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New Hampton man charged with soliciting teen for sex

NEW HAMPTON — An alternate member of the town's Planning Board has been indicted by a Belknap County grand jury for two separate counts of knowingly trying to solicit a person, using a computer, he believed to be under the age of 16 to engage in sexual intercourse.

Robert Joseph, 67, of 62 NH Route 132 North was indicted after an investigation conducted by federal authorities, said Belknap County Attorney Melissa Guldbrandsen.

The alleged Internet offenses occurred between the September 20, 2013 and November 9, 2013.

Joseph is listed on the town's Website as being an alternate member of the New Hampton Planning Board.

He is scheduled to appear for arraignment this morning in the Belknap County Superior Court.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 12 February 2014 12:53

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Tewksbury firefighter is new T-N chief

TILTON-NORTHFIELD — The Board of Fire Commissioners yesterday announced the appointment of Michael W. Sitar, Jr., a 32-year veteran of the Fire Department in Tewksbury, Massachusetts, as chief.

Sitar succeeds Brad Ober, who resigned last year to become deputy chief of the Gilford Fire Department. Sitar will take the oath of office at a ceremony at noon on Saturday, Feb. 22 at the Center Street Station in Tilton. The public is invited to attend.

Commissioner Pat Clark said that Sitar, who hails from a family of firefighters, was chosen from a field of more than 20 candidates.

The search committee, chaired by Jim Clements, the chief executive officer of the Spaulding Youth Center, included Scott Davis a commissioner of the Tiulton-Northfield Water Company, Kevin LaChapelle, the Franklin Fire Chief, Steven Bluhm, a Northfield Selectman, Joie Jesseman, a Tilton Selectman, and Joyce Fulweiler, a Northfield resident and the Tilton town administrator. Clark said that the Search Committee and Fire Commission short-listed the same candidates.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 12 February 2014 12:50

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