Judge agrees with Tardif & Gammon that Belknap Convention violated Right-to-Know law by electing officers with secret ballots
LACONIA —Justice Timothy Vaughan of Grafton County Superior Court has ruled that as Tom Tardif and Dave Gammon charged, the Belknap County Convention violated the state's "Right-to-Know" law by electing its officers by secret ballot late last year, but because it corrected its error the judge declined to order further action.
When the convention convened on December 10, 2012, Representative Don Flanders (R-Laconia), the acting chairman, told the members that Karen Wadsworth, clerk of the New Hampshire House of Representatives, advised him that the election could be conducted by secret ballot on the strength of an opinion of the New Hampshire Supreme Court. The featured attraction was a race for the chairmanship between Rep. Colette Worsman of Meredith and Rep. Frank Tilton of Laconia, both Republicans, which Worsman won without any of the representatives having to make their choice public.
In February Tardif and Gammon filed suit. A month later the convention re-elected its officers by a public roll call vote and in April "reaffirmed" the results with yet another vote. Tilton did not again challenge Worsman for the chairmanship on either occasion.
Vaughan agreed that the convention "directly violated" RSA 91-A:2, II, which prescribes that all meetings of a public body shall be open to the public and that "no vote while in open session may be taken by secret ballot."
Noting that the convention "realized their error" and held a second election, which with only one exception mirrored the outcome of the first, Vaughan held that to strike the election and order another "would be an exercise in futility and a further waste of resources". Likewise,the justice found no evidence that the convention acted in bad faith a and declined to impose civil penalties or order that its members undergo remedial training in the law.
However, Vaughan ruled that because the convention did not conduct a proper election until Tardif and Gammon filed suit, their action was required to ensure compliance with the "Right-to-Know" law and consequently, they were entitled to the cost of bringing the litigation. Since Tardif and Gammon represented themselves, their costs consist of filing fees.
Attorney Paul Fitzgerald, who represented the convention, said that Justice James D. O'Neill, III of Belknap County Superior Court recused himself, which may explain why the case was heard in Grafton County.
Last Updated on Tuesday, 23 July 2013 03:10
GILFORD — Former Fire Rescue Lt. Nick Mercuri has been hired as the Bureau Chief and EMS Regional Coordinator for LRGHealthcare.
Mercuri holds a Bachelors of Science degree in nursing from Boston College and a Masters in Health Care Administration from New England College.
Mercuri is also a paramedic and has worked for Gilford Fire Rescue for 13 years, as well as in the private sector.
Last Updated on Tuesday, 23 July 2013 03:06
LACONIA — Begun in Laconia nearly 50 years ago, Aavid Thermalloy corporation recently announced that it has returned its corporate headquarters and design center to the City on the Lakes from Concord. Aavid provides thermal management solutions to the electronics industry for a wide range of applications.
Appearing before the City Council last night, Norm Soucy, vice-president and general manager of the global transportation and industrial systems division, told the councilors "we are proud to call Laconia home." he said that the firm has invested renovating space at its 200,000-square foot facility at the O'Shea Industrial Park to bring its design team alongside its manufacturing operations as well as provide a home for its executive , administrative and sales offices.
Soucy said that the firm is working with both the Huot Regional Technical Education Center at Laconia High School and Lakes Region Community College to foster opportunities for young men and women for in advanced manufacturing. "We are investing in Laconia," he said.
Brian Byrne, chief financial officer, echoed "we are a member of your community."
The City Council welcomed the move and those attending the meeting openly applauded the announcement.
Last December Aavid was acquired by Audax Private Equity of Boston from Nautic Partners, LLC of Providence, Rhode Island, another private equity firm which a year earlier backed the management buyout of Aavid. The terms of the transactions were not disclosed.
Last Updated on Tuesday, 23 July 2013 02:59
Man who died in bicycle accident on treacherous Mechanic Street hill recalled as guy who liked to make people laugh
LACONIA — A bicycle crash on Mechanic Street killed a local man just before midnight Saturday near Sanborn Park said Police Chief Christopher Adams
He said it appeared Anthony White, 27, was headed down the hill toward Clinton Street when he apparently lost control of his bicycle and crash landed.
He said a woman called police and responding officers found White lying in the street. He was taken by ambulance to Lakes Region General Hospital by ambulance and flown to Maine Medical Center with severe injuries. He died at 4:32 a.m.
Adams said police investigated and determined it was accidental. He said alcohol may have been a contributing factor.
Little is known about White but some posthumous postings on his friends' Facebook pages indicate he was a person who was fun to be around and who loved to laugh and make others laugh.
He had worked security at Benders 3-ring Saloon (the tent next to Heat restaurant at the Weirs) during the past two motorcycle weeks and his supervisor said he was "just a really good kid."
She said he could be "goofy and silly" at times but would go out of his way to make somebody laugh if the thought they down.
"He was known to go off on tangents just to make people smile," she said.
Mechanic Street runs parallel to Union Avenue and is noted for a steep decline when headed from Stark Street toward Clinton Street. Adams said it appeared White was at the bottom of the hill when he crashed.
While the actual cause of White's crash may never be known, he was alone at the time and his friends said he lived nearby.
"It's in terrible shape," said Public Works Director Paul Moynahan noting Mechanic it one of two streets, the other is Belvedere Street, in the city that will be completely redone this summer. "It's been on our schedule for a number of years."
Moynihan said construction will begin in mid-August and is expected to last two months. He said the pavement will be reclaimed after some sewer and water upgrades in the stretch that runs from Stark Street to Clinton Street.
Last Updated on Tuesday, 23 July 2013 02:57
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