Atkinson Town Hall

Atkinson Town Hall
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Welcome Message and Mission Statement

Welcome to the NEW Atkinson Reporter! Under new management, with new resolve.

The purpose of this Blog is to pick up where the Atkinson Reporter has left off. "The King is dead, Long live the King!" This Blog is a forum for the discussion of predominantly Atkinson; Officials, People, Ideas, and Events. You may give opinion, fact, or evaluation, but ad hominem personal attacks will not be tolerated, or published. The conversation begun on the Atkinson Reporter MUST be continued!

This Blog will not fall to outside hacks from anyone, especially insecure public officials afraid of their constituents criticism.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

The Police Chief is being sued AGAIN??? What is going on?

It appears that the Town Moderator, Frank Polito has filed suit in NH Federal District Court for copyright infringement, against none other than our constantly legally embattled police chief. See the link below

Evidently the case, filed on June 11, 2009, has ALREADY been SEALED by Order of the District Court Judge, responding to a motion file by one of the parties.

So, it looks like our town officials are now suing each other, and once again the general public will never know the details, just like most of the past lawsuits.

Does anyone out there know of a copyright that Frank owns? or how Phil could have infringed upon it?

And you wonder why people laugh at this stuff.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Atkinson to hire town administrator soon

From the Eagle Tribune;

Atkinson to hire town administrator soon
By Eric Parry

ATKINSON — Town officials said they will hire a new administrator soon.

A committee of three current selectmen and six former selectmen has reviewed the 30 applications for the town administrator job and expects the interviews to begin shortly, Selectman Bill Friel said.

"We should have somebody in place pretty quickly," he said.

Selectmen asked all former selectmen who had worked with previous town administrators to suggest who among the candidates would be a good fit for the town, Friel said.

Selectman William Bennett said they would prefer someone who has experience working in New Hampshire town government.

The applicants come from various backgrounds, including some expected to be too expensive for Atkinson. Bennett attributed the large candidate pool to the weak economy.

The board began reviewing the applications in June and has said it would like to hire someone as soon as possible.

"We're refining where we want to go and the person we're looking for," Bennett said.

This is the first time in recent years the selectmen have taken on a search for a town administrator entirely by themselves. In previous searches, the town hired the Local Government Center to screen applications. That service cost $5,000.

A candidate, whose name was not released, was offered the job in April. But when that person gave notice to the employer, Atkinson's offer was matched. That candidate remained from the search when the most recent town administrator, Steven Angelo, was hired. No salary range was specifically stated in the job advertisement.

Atkinson has been without a town administrator since late January when Angelo quit after only a few months on the job. Before Angelo, Atkinson went through two town administrators within a year.

Atkinson, town consider tower plan

From the Eagle Tribune;

Atkinson, town consider tower plan
By Eric Parry

ATKINSON, N.H. — Town officials told SBA Tower II they want the company to stop making changes to the Hog Hill tower without their permission.

SBA Tower met with selectmen last night to discuss its proposal to add three flush-mounted antennas to the 160-foot communications tower.

But selectmen said that before voting on the proposal, the company needs to assure Atkinson officials they will adhere to the agreement with the town.

For years, previous owners of the tower have made changes, not followed through with required inspections, and failed to landscape the property as proposed. SBA Tower purchased the tower from Mariner Tower in 2007.

Selectman Bill Bennett said the tower's previous owners did not have annual inspections done by the town.

Attorney Steven Grill, who represents SBA Tower II, told selectmen that the company with follow through with its responsibilities even though the previous owners did not.

"This is not just more of the same, we're committed to doing it the right way," Grill said.

The latest proposal is almost identical to the one denied a special exception by the town's Zoning Board of Adjustment in March 2007.

SBA Tower II filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in September 2007, but a federal judge ruled in September 2008 that it was up to selectmen to decide the case. The zoning board issued its decision when the 50-year-old tower was owned by Mariner Tower.

Abutters also say they were concerned about changes to the tower.

Resident Karen Donnelly said she's frustrated there have been changes to the tower without the town's permission. There are frequently people working on the tower day and night, and Donnelly said she never knows who they are or what they're doing.

"I've sat here for 11 years and heard, 'We'll do better, we'll do better,'" Donnelly said.

Grill said the tower company will make a presentation on proposed changes to the tower before selectmen prior to a public hearing Aug. 17. The presentation and hearing were to be last night but rescheduled because the company was not ready.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Windsor Tax Collector headed to Jail??? $300,000 missing?

Please consider this a submission article

This investigation started three years ago stimulated by a Taxpayer's Advocacy Group similar to the Atkinson Taxpayers Association, Atkinson, Taxpayers for Fair Evaluations Committee, Atkinson Taxpayers Committee, Coalition of New Hampshires Taxpayers (on the state level) and many others interested in correcting the illegal practices of their Town officials. The details and documents supplied to the State, came from the taxpayers, not Town officials. Can anyone guess why? It is proceeding from an investigation into a criminal case, where surely certain someone(s) will be going to jail. Even though Town officials denied it, there was a smoking gun.

The taxpayers of Windsor that have filed suit against their Town officials have been subjected to the very same types of harassment and intimidation as those that have filed suit against Atkinson officials. This harassment is no accident. There are a lot of questions why State officials didn’t get involved sooner so stay tuned to see how far up the ladder this case will lead.

As you read and follow this case through the courts, please remember abuses can only thrive if we do nothing to stop the few that do so much harm. It is your tax dollars that they are using against you, not for you.

Isn’t it time to get involved with your favorite local taxpayer group(s) and help put a stop to the abuses in your town? Without them there will be no accountability, or transparency in your government. Without them the abuses will continue. Please don’t become a victim of their abuse. Join today.

Reported tonight on WMUR TV

WINDSOR, N.H. -- The town of Windsor is under intense scrutiny amid accusations of corruption by the town's former tax collector.

PDF: Report On Windsor Taxes

Many residents are calling for an investigation, saying that while they were being taxed, their some of their neighbors were not. The town records were recently the subject of a state audit, and the audit's report indicates there may be problems with the town's books.

Irene Palmer has called Windsor home since 1974, but she said what has happened in recent years tears at the foundation of the town she loves.

"It's been very difficult," she said. "It's divided the town."

Last month, Palmer and several other Windsor residents filed a lawsuit against the town. It claims that for years, former tax collector Beverly Hines allowed her friends and family to avoid paying taxes, failing to collect as much as $300,000 in town of less than 250 people.

"If I have to pay my taxes -- and I have to scrape to do it, my wife and I are retired -- then I expect everybody in town has to pay their fair share," said Don Palmer. "That's not what's been happening."

That accusation prompted the state to get involved. The Department of Revenue ordered an independent audit of Windsor's books for the calendar year 2007.

Among the findings:

Several tax payments based on the tax collector's records could not be verified to bank deposits.
A few individual payments were applied to multiple property tax accounts.
Property tax amounts assessed were sometimes manually adjusted in the tax collector's books.

The audit goes on to say the tax collector's office lacked "fiscal integrity" and "recommends that the board of selectmen turn the audit findings over to appropriate law enforcement agencies."

Board of selectmen chairwoman Darlene Cuddy refused to stop for an interview. News 9 also was turned away at Hines' home.

Department of Revenue Commissioner Kevin Clougherty expressed vindication in forcing Windsor audit.

"I think what we are going to have to do is get the message out to other cities and towns that this isn't going to be tolerated," Clougherty said.

Later Friday, Windsor selectmen said they would sit down and answer questions once the legal proceedings are complete. The town attorney didn't return calls.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Big Island Pond group is winning battle against milfoil Lake group tackles invasive milfoil

From the Eagle Tribune;

Big Island Pond group is winning battle against milfoil Lake group tackles invasive milfoil
By Eric Parry

Scuba diving for milfoil in Big Island Pond is a dirty job. At the end of a day of hunting the exotic species, Bob Patterson has to clean the mud out of his ears with Q-tips.

But once you can see the natural grass grow back and fish swimming around an area that was once infested, Patterson said it makes the whole job worth the effort.

"Now it hasn't taken over our lake, we're taking over the milfoil," Patterson said while touring the lake by boat yesterday, searching for the invasive weed.

Last month, the Big Island Pond Corp. decided against a chemical treatment this summer and instead is using a weed harvester to see how well it works.

This spring, Patterson, who manages a team of 15 divers, and a group of residents around the lake purchased a 30-foot pontoon boat, named The Milfoiler. They equipped it with a pump, hoses and perforated deck to collect the plant.

The harvester already has helped the group clean 40 infected acres around the pond, far more than they had originally thought they would be able to do this year.

Patterson and the state Department of Environmental Services created a five-year plan earlier this year and is already close to exceeding the goals for the first two years.

"We decided to tackle where it was heaviest first to see if it could be done," Patterson said.

For the last month, scuba divers have been on the lake four days a week. After pulling the weed from the bottom, a long, 4-inch-diameter hose sucks it onto the boat's perforated deck and dumps it into a plastic box. The weed is then bagged and brought ashore. A detailed report of the collection is sent to DES.

A typical dive lasts about an hour. Divers wear a compass to keep track of their location in the murky water, Patterson said. In nice weather, divers will spend as much as six hours collecting weeds.

"A lot of it is like feeling in the blind," Patterson said after cleaning some of the weed from Hemlock Heights Cove yesterday morning.

While the divers are removing the weed underwater, a team of kayakers searches for milfoil using an underwater viewscope and collects pieces of the weed floating on the surface.

Divers tried collecting the weed last summer without the harvester, but the process was much slower, Patterson said.

Within 20 minutes of diving yesterday, Patterson collected half a barrel of the weed and said that amount would have taken him an entire day without the boat.

The Milfoiler isn't working alone.

AB Aquatics, a company Patterson started earlier this year, donated a smaller harvester, The Eco-Dash, to work on Big Island Pond this summer. Unlike the larger boat, the Eco-Dash specializes in shallow areas. That harvester requires only a two-man team and is pulled across the water by the diver.

"In some areas, the Eco-Dash can cover up to an acre an hour," Patterson said.

The group's progress led DES to install two plastic nets in the lake to contain the milfoil from the already cleaned areas around Governor's Island and Hemlock Heights.

Yesterday, Patterson and diver Chris Knoeting were cleaning the weeds from the net.

At the beginning of the season, a day's work would result in the collection of about 200 gallons of milfoil, but that would be more total plants than recent collections.

Last week, a team of divers collected more than 1,000 gallons of milfoil from the northeast side of the lake, but those plants were much longer.

"That's where it had been growing for many years," Patterson said.

Milfoil grows in water as deep as 15 feet and can grow to about 10 feet in length.

After the milfoil is bagged, volunteers like Skip Lanouette dry the weed and use it as a garden fertilizer.

"It's full of phosphates and it's great stuff," Lanouette said.

But even with the success so far this season, Patterson knows the lake will never be completely free of the nuisance plant. Milfoil is present in the majority of lakes and ponds in New Hampshire and he's happy to have some younger volunteers like Matt Roberts, 16, to help.

"We're already passing the stewardship of the lake on to the younger generation," Patterson said.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Atkinson Country Club opens par 3 course

From the Eagle Tribune;

Atkinson Country Club opens par 3 course
By Eric Parry

ATKINSON — Children and new golfers will feel right at home at the new par 3 golf course opening tomorrow at the Atkinson Resort and Country Club.

The 18-hole course can be intimidating for new golfers, so the new course offers four tees to hit from on each of the course's nine holes. There are also very few hazards, like water or sand traps, to get in the way, according to Wayne Swanson, an assistant golf professional.

The shortest two tees on each hole are right on the fairway to make it even easier for younger golfers, Swanson said.

"This was designed for the family in mind," he said.

As a public golf course, Swanson said, they have a lot of beginner golfers on the weekends who may decide to play on the new course instead of the larger 18-hole course.

But more serious golfers will enjoy the course, too.

The smaller greens require the golfer to be more accurate with their shots.

"It's a great tool for working on your short game," Swanson said.

The course is located on the back of the resort property and was constructed over the fall and winter, according to Swanson.

One of the course's highlights is the view from the eighth hole, which overlooks the Merrimack River Valley.

"It's going to be real pretty in the fall," Swanson said.

The new course will also be used in golf clinics for children and adults.

Atkinson's new course joins just two other local par 3 courses in the area. One is located on Brookstone Park on Route 111 in Derry and the other is Murphy's Garrison Golf Center in Haverhill, Mass.

Swanson said another draw to the course for children will be the price. Children ages 3 to 9 only pay their age.

"We've had a lot of kids in our clinics excited about that," Swanson said.

For nine holes, the new course will cost $15 midweek and $25 on weekends. Eighteen holes cost $17 midweek and $27 on weekends.

Local Band in Competition

From Speak Out Danville;

Local Band in Competition

Postby safety frog » Tue Jul 14, 2009 9:14 am
"Something Green" iincludes some musicians from Atkinson. They've entered into a Battle of the Bands competition and were recorded and videotaped at the Haverhill, MA cable station. The competition winner gets a small purse, but more importantly to the guys, they get to make a professional video and get to open for a national, major act. The band carrying the most votes throughout the competition gets to keep the top position on the page of the website,

The band includes Andrew Hernandez on bass, Chuck Hargreaves on drums, Matt Hevesh on lead, and Charlie Ober on vocals and rhythm guitar. The guys are good friends and all have worked hard. The two songs in their segment are originals, both written (lyrics and music) by them.

Please point your cursor on the below web address and then cast your vote for "Something Green." ... route=view

If you have any trouble hyperlinking via the above web address, type in into your browser, enter, and then on the right of the home screen place your cursor over the words "Click here to vote!" (you might have to scroll down just a bit to find them first).

Monday, July 6, 2009

Timberlane antenna should help police radio contact

From the Eagle Tribune;

Timberlane antenna should help police radio contact
By Margo Sullivan

PLAISTOW — Police have a new radio antenna at Timberlane Regional High School.

The antenna, which stands 30 feet high, was erected atop the boiler room at the school about three weeks ago, according to Jim Hughes, school facilities director.

Before the antenna arrived, dead spots made police radios useless inside Timberlane Regional Middle and High School buildings. In an emergency, officers needed to borrow walkie talkies from the principal's office to communicate.

Hughes did not have the final cost for the antenna, but said the job came in under the $9,000 limit the School Board had authorized.

Earlier this year, the Timberlane Regional School Board voted to install the antenna and pay the costs.

Plaistow Town Manager Sean Fitzgerald said the money came entirely from the school district.

There's no word yet whether the radio canopy is working well and has helped boost the range of radio communications.

Atkinson police Lt. William Baldwin, who is also a School Board member, said previously he supported the decision to install the antenna and thought it would boost radio signals for several area police departments.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Thoughts on Independence Day.

Submitted by MAcciard;

Please Accept as an article submission;

This holiday weekend, typically one of backyard bar-b-ques, sparklers, fireworks, gathering with family and friends, stop for a moment and do something you have probably never done before on this holiday, stop and give a moments thought to the meaning of this day.

In these perilous times where we appear to be replaying with modern technology the crusades, when the press and academia, and yes, many of our Senators and Congresspeople seem hell-bent upon telling everything that they believe is wrong with America, and the President and Congress seem to wish to spend the earning of the next three generations, Stop! and consider objectively everything America stands for and has accomplished in our 231 year history.

America stands for;

Freedom! Freedom to express yourself in any way you wish as long as it does not infringe upon the rights of others.

Independence! Independence to pursue your brand of happiness in any manner in which you choose, so long as your pursuit does not infringe on the rights of another.
Opportunity! Opportunity to arrive on our shores as many immigrants do, with nothing to their names, and yet they are able to achieve a degree of wealth, and a comfort of lifestyle here that they could not achieve anywhere else on the globe. This is why people risk life and love to come here year after year. You don't see people sacrificing their lives to immigrate to the people's paradise of Cuba, or China, or Venezuela.

We hear day in and day out of the failures of our country, our country's leaders, our military, our culture, our society, our very existence. I say to those who can do nothing but complain, if you love France or Cuba so much go and live there, you are doing America no good here.

No Country in the history of the world has accomplished so much as has America. No country has been as generous, as noble, as honest, as forthright, or possessed as much integrity as America. America, as Ronald Reagan said, is the "shining city upon the hill". but much more than that we have consistently backed up our ideals with our blood, treasure, and deeds.

America was primarily responsible for the fall of Nazi Germany, after our victory, we spent hundreds of millions of dollars to rebuild Europe, and now they show their gratitude by condemning America. America was responsible for the fall of the most oppressive regime in history, the Soviet Union, without firing a shot, and now those satellite countries that were crushed under the soviet boot for so long are now beacons of democracy on a continent bereft of that. They have become our strongest allies, replacing the lily-livered socialist countries of France and Belgium. And in the last 6 years we have liberated Afghanistan and Iraq, giving 50 million people their first chance to govern themselves. We have not stolen their oil, as John Kerry intimated was our reason for going, we have not plundered their country, as Micheal Moore stated we would do. We have not tortured them as Teddy Kennedy stated we have.

We hear from the media that it is our support of Israel that has caused the Muslims to hate us, but they fail to mention the $120 million a year we give to the Palestinian Authority for those very people.

America has made mistakes, but far fewer than any other country. We do not conquer, we do not enslave, or subjugate, We liberate, help our enemies get back on their feet, and then leave. We do far more for the world than all of the other countries combined. We have given time effort and money to 183 nations across the globe, most of those owe their very existence to the benevolence of the United States of America.

So when you are wolfing down your hamburgers this weekend, think for a moment about the history of our nation and reflect that you are a part of the Greatest Nation in Earth's History! Also reflect that our sons and daughters are in harm's way, fighting to defend the very freedoms that we are celebrating this weekend.

Thank you and God Bless.