To The Daily Sun,
Lakes Region Community College serves the Greater Laconia area with high quality, affordable academic programs that prepare students for careers and for transfer to continue their post-secondary education. We greatly appreciate the strong local support and interest in the college. We are excited about LRCC's future, working in partnership with local public officials, local schools and area businesses.
Recently, LRCC hosted an event to update regional elected officials on developments at the college. We would like to correct some inaccuracies in an article published March 11 following this event. Much of the article outlined future plans for the college facilities, including new construction and renovation. The correct information is:
LRCC will break ground this spring on a new 21,000-square-foot facility to house the college's automotive programs, which include a program affiliated with General Motors and a general associate degree program. The new, larger facility will also enable the college to increase its in-service training for local automotive technicians.
The 7,100-square-foot space that will be vacated once the auto programs move is earmarked for future use by the culinary program, although LRCC will first undertake design work ahead of any request for funds to do the renovations necessary to re-purpose this space. In the meantime the program will continue to operate at its present home at Canterbury Shaker Village, where LRCC operates classes and a restaurant.
The CCSNH Board of Trustees has approved a capital request that would, if funded, enable the construction of a facility at LRCC for mobile diesel and marine engine technology. The $5 million request will be part of all State of New Hampshire capital project requests considered in the 2015 legislative session. The decision to seek funding to relocate the program to LRCC was generated by input from employers in the heavy-equipment industry that the program could better meet industry need if located more centrally. This information was shared at the event by LRCC President Scott Kalicki, and not board Chairman Paul Holloway who was not in attendance.
LRCC's newest facility, the Health and Science Building, houses the nursing and fire science/fire protection programs as well as chemistry, physics and biology labs that are part of LRCC's commitment to increase STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education. Construction of this facility enabled LRCC to use space in its adjacent Center for Arts and Technology to house a new advanced manufacturing program, which was developed in partnership with more than 20 area employers to strengthen the workforce pipeline for advanced manufacturing companies in the region as part of a statewide initiative to strengthen and increase advanced manufacturing training opportunities and pathways to careers.
Thank you for the opportunity to correct the article and add needed context to some of the information presented. Lakes Region Community College is committed to serving the needs of its region and to partnering with high schools, area industry and four-year colleges and universities to support student success and a strong New Hampshire economy, and we deeply value to connections we enjoy with the communities we serve.
Director of Communications
Community College System of NH
Last Updated on Wednesday, 19 March 2014 10:24
To The Daily Sun,
An open letter to Gilmanton residents:
The Board of Directors and Library Staff wish to thank Gilmanton voters for their support on March 11. The Library will continue to serve the community because of the successful vote.
Staff is committed to offering programs to meet the needs of Gilmanton residents. Suggestions for new programs are always welcome. Call or stop by the library to talk to the staff. And if you still don't have a free library card, please call or stop by the library.
The Board of Directors is organizing fund-raising efforts and community activity events for the spring and summer. Please watch for information on how you can volunteer for one of the events. Information will be posted on the website, Facebook and in the newspapers.
Board meetings are held the second Tuesday of the month. Meetings are open and we welcome community participation. The budget is reviewed each month so if you have questions, concerns or suggestions, please join us. The next meeting will be Tuesday, April 8, at 7 p.m. at the library.
Again, thank you for your support.
GYRLA Board of Directors
Last Updated on Tuesday, 18 March 2014 11:07
To The Daily Sun,
Reading the news that four long term employees at the Belknap County Nursing Home were handed their walking papers brings to mind the cynical observation of Rahm Emanuel: "Never let a crisis go to waste."
In order to make the case that the 2014 county budget was inadequate, the administration imposed painful staff reductions in the hope that the resultant controversy would redound to the detriment of the convention and not to itself. The real story takes a bit more research. Anyone who compares the county executive staff of five years ago to today will have to concede that the administration has grown greatly in size and salaries. At the same time, some county departments are left with scant resources.
Even though the county was presented with evidence of the cost-effectiveness, and necessity, of adding correctional officers to the jail, the word has already been passed that those officers will not be hired. Incidentally, the salary and benefits for those additional officers were completely funded in the county budget led by a conservative core of Republican delegates. The chair of the convention stated publicly that it was a primary goal to make the jail a priority when crafting this year's budget. In union with the commissioners, the Democrats voted for a budget which did not include this needed jail staff.
The Belknap commissioners have vented their spleen in a most unfortunate way. Their anger at a convention that was determined to take its Chapter 24 responsibilities seriously has resulted in unnecessary layoffs. While the public will be able to cast its vote this fall for a new direction for the county, it is greatly too bad that the current slate of
commissioners retains the power to so distress the lives of hard-working people. With specific reference to the nursing home and jail, the commissioners should take another look at their responsibilities and chart a different course.
Rep. Dick Burchell
Last Updated on Tuesday, 18 March 2014 11:02
To The Daily Sun,
I would like to comment on the recent article regarding the new 10 year "monopoly" contract with MetroCast by all the local towns in the area. This is in addition to the letter to the editor by the gentleman from Gilford who also wrote regarding the same contract — to which I agree.
My major analysis of MetroCast over the last 10 years are that they annually increase their fees by a minimum of 5 percent a year, constantly move and eliminate channels and basically offer very little in quality improvements. They support their price increases based on their cost increases for programming which includes free broadcast stations, extended cable stations that are increasing their commercial content to the level of on-the-air stations and corporate bundlers who force useless channels as part of a package.
I realize that some of this is true, but where is the push-back by the cable operators and the towns? Are not these providers getting huge revenues from all the commercials they sell to advertisers and then expect us to pay higher and higher cable fees to watch these commercials? Talk about double-dipping. It was bad enough watching all those commercials when we used antennas, but at least the programming was "free."
My understanding is that the city of Laconia has some latitude in negotiating the contract, but customer pricing is not one of them. So they negotiate primarily to get the best possible franchise fee. How about getting the cable company to offer better packages? I suggested a few years ago to offer a video and internet only package? They only offer packages that include VOIP added in or overpriced premium channels.
How about packages like the satellite companies offer with less channels for less money since most of us only watch less than 10 channels anyways? How about improving the quality so that when we watch important events we do not get drop-outs and audio failure even in good weather? How about reducing redundant stations that broadcast the same thing on three different channels? How about getting different programming on PBS Channels 2 and 11 so I can watch the "Nightly Business Report" and "This Old House" like I used to get two years ago or as you call it "two price increases ago"? How about getting a decent TV Guide channel that doesn't take 10 minutes to find out what's on and is used for 50 percent advertising?
I have called and written on these issues in the past, but monopolies very seldom listen to and take action to the end-user.
If I didn't get my point across, how about the fact that technology is changing and if cable companies do not get their act together and keep increasing prices every year well beyond the rate of inflation, the paradigm is going to shift and soon we may all have a better and cheaper solution.
I can't wait. But in the meantime, I think the city and towns can do a lot more, especially if the customer base speaks up and demands value and better options.
Last Updated on Tuesday, 18 March 2014 10:47
To The Daily Sun,
Regarding Obamacare, is this the biggest government boondoggle we've ever seen or what?
Five years ago when they started talking it up they made so many promises it sounded too good to be true and guess what, it was. First Obama looked the American people in the eye and flat out lied to us. "If you like your doctor you can keep your doctor. If you like your health insurance you can keep your health insurance," he said.
Democrats shut the Republicans out writing the thing behind closed doors then gave Congress 48 hours to pass it. "We'll know what is in it after we pass it," said Nancy P. But who could read a couple thousand pages of complex legislation in such a short time? They didn't, the Democrats just passed it unread. Not one Republican voted for it. So Democrats reacted in standard form calling all Republicans and conservatives racist.
Five years later and we have seen that the critics were right. A hint might have been that Congress exempted themselves from it. The unions were the first to realize they had been hoodwinked and demanded Obama fix it. So Obama gave them an exemption. Then big business constituents of Obama realized it was going to hurt them and demanded Obama's fix it. So Obama gave them an extended extension. The roll-out was a case study in incompetence poor planning and more spin. Then sign-ups which they still can't or won't tell us how many people actually are covered. They keep reporting inflated numbers of people visiting the sign-up pages and how many people have applied. But can anyone tell us how many are really covered?
After all this, the spin continues. Now you can keep your doctor if you can pay for your doctor. Isn't that what health insurance is supposed to be for? You still can't keep your old insurance because it wasn't good enough, except for tens of millions of American families it was. It was supposed to save most families a couple thousand dollars a year. Instead, it costs several thousands more for most plus the deductibles are thousands more and co-pays are much higher. Now Obama's constituents are complaining telling him to fix it. So Obama said if it causes them a hardship they can get an exemption.
What a president. What a leader. Who the heck does he think is going to be left to pay for this fiasco? Probably the Chinese from where we have been borrowing trillions of dollars. Right. China violates the human rights of its people, while it builds up a huge military machine, pays slave wages and we're supposed to trust these guys. What a president.
Last Updated on Tuesday, 18 March 2014 10:35