Daily Archives: March 12, 2012

Write in Candidate for Library Trustee.

Melissa Coffey is interested in running for the 2 year term for Library Trustee.  Currently no one signed up for the position.  Please feel free to write in Melissa Coffey for the position.  Melissa expressed a desire to run and is a frequent user of the Library and the Trustees have asked her to try a write in.

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Crews Battle Truck Blaze at Wendy’s Restaurant

Fire and police worked to battle a truck fire at Wendy's on Route 102 today. Image by Ed Guldin.

Crews battled a truck fire this afternoon in the Wendy's parking lot on Route 102. Image by Meredith Farrell.

The Londonderry Police and Fire Departments were called to a truck fire in the parking lot of Wendy’s restaurant on Route 102 this afternoon. The fire was first reported at 2:51 PM March 12, 2012 by several callers. The police reported that the fire was already “fully involved.”

Police responded and were first on scene at about 2:54 reporting that the fire was fully involved and that there may be live rounds inside the vehicle that may be going off. It could be heard over the scanner that police believed the sound may not be from ammunition but instead the tires blowing out. Another officer responded that the owner of the truck had already reported that there was live rounds inside the truck. This heightened caution police as fire crews approached the scene.

Once on the scene, fire personnel were able to begin working the fire as police established a perimeter to ensure public and fire safety. Just fifteen minutes after the fire was initially reported, crews were able to extinguish the fire and began the overhauling process.

Crews battled a truck fire this afternoon in the Wendy's parking lot on Route 102.

These images were taken by Meredith Farrell, Kathy Wagner, John Robinson and Ed Guldin. To see more images of the truck, be sure to visit our Darkroom.

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The Buzz about Londonderry Bees

Record high temperatures near 70 degrees today has the bees flying in Londonderry and wondering “where have all the flowers gone?” Located on the corner of Cross Road and Adams Road sit several bee hives that help pollinate the hundreds of acres of crops in town. Just moments ago, it was reported that the hives were swarming with bees, though it’s unsure if they were just stretching their wings after a long winter or out and about looking for work. In honor of this unusually warm, and active, day in Londonderry, we offer this reprint of a story from 2007.

So how does all this fruit in Londonderry get its start? As each of the plants grow they produce a flower that must be cross-pollinated. The orchards in town have a mix of tree types in neat rows, this is not just to provide you a variety to pick. Apple trees are “self incompatible” and need another type of apple tree for the honey bee to visit. An apple orchard needs one to two hives per acre of field. Strawberry’s and blueberries need as many as four per acre.

A few years ago, we ran into Alden Marshal tending the hives on Adams road, just over the wall where the giant maples were cut down a few years ago. Tending his hives for thirty years, he has several hundred located between Tyngsboro and Hampstead. In Londonderry, Alden is caretaker of 20 locations.

To get these amazing photos he opened the hives for a peek inside. While shooting the bees we were warned about standing in the approach corridor of the hives. On the way back the bees head directly to the front and can become agitated when you get in the way. The burr comb had just been removed with a knife to neaten up the frames that hold the honeycomb. You can see the workers completing the work he started.

We talked of house bees and robber bees, the guard bees that keep the robbers out, work the entrance. Even though the hives are within a few feet of each other each bee knows where to return to when coming back from the field. Each hive provides a surprising 40 to 50 pounds of honey every year. About the only thing he had to ay about the recent health issues with honey bees, was “we sure are getting a lot of press on the issue, it is not something affecting me”.

As we all know bad press is better than no press at all. Alden does not have a website but you can buy his product locally and reach him at the number on the side of the truck.

For more images of the hives, bees and Alden, visit our Darkroom!

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Missing Woman Arrested in Londonderry

Londonderry Police located a missing person this weekend and subsequently arrested the woman after receiving a call that she was staying at the Sleep Inn on Perkins Road. The woman, Marrisa Santos, had reportedly been missing for four days.

A family member of Santos, 23 of Berlin, New Hampshire, contacted police on Sunday just after midnight to report that she was staying at the hotel. The family member told police that, though no missing persons report had been filed, she had been missing and that she does have warrants for her arrest. Police were also told that she is a known drug user.

Police met with the family member in the parking lot of the hotel before making contact with Santos. It was unknown at the time if she had drugs or weapons on her, or if there would be anyone with her in the room. After making contact, the police logs show that only Santos was arrested.

Marrisa Santos was held on $5,000 cash bail for a bench warrant. No other charges were listed. She is scheduled to appear in court today, March 12, 2012, in Derry District Court.

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Derry to Receive Panera Bread

Jewett Construction Company, Inc. has contracted with Panera Bread, LLC to build a new, ground-up bakery and restaurant at 17 Manchester Road, Derry, NH, as part of the new 49,000 square foot Pinkerton Place retail and business complex. The job entails construction of a 4,500 square foot steel-framed, load-bearing building including all roofing, electrical and HVAC work, plumbing, exterior flatwork for patio seating, and all exterior finishes. Steve Harris is Jewett’s Project Manager for the four-month project, and Job Superintendent is Jeff Gower.

Rendering of the new Panera Bread, to be located at 17 Manchester Rd, Derry, NH.

Jewett Construction Company, Inc. is a Raymond, NH-based design-build and construction management company celebrating 40 years as a family-owned and operated firm specializing in commercial and industrial projects throughout the Northeast.  It is the parent company of Jewett Automotive Design & Construction, and Jewett Metal Buildings and Steel Erectors, specializing in automobile dealership construction and steel buildings, respectively.  Collectively, their clients include such well-known organizations as Northeast Credit Union, LAARS Heating Systems, SIGSAUER, The Grappone Automotive Group, Exeter Hospital, and Manchester Community College.  Additional information about Jewett Construction is available at their website.

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When Zero Percent Cost You

The teacher contract was the only one not supported by the budget committee.  According to the committee, “The amount of money was to much, the town has 0% increases this year.”

What you will be voting for on the town and school ballot this Tuesday is the most complex I have ever seen since arriving in Londonderry in the early 80′s. Five pages of questions for the town and two for the school district means a lot of responsibility that day.  You may not know it, but you are voting on about $100 million; it’s your $100 million too!

Using information that is easily available from the town and school, the analysis of the five contracts up for a vote this year yielded some surprising results.  Looking at items that are considerably different on the surface and comparing them between bargaining units, I hope the voter can get a snapshot of what they will be voting on.  The contracts are long, large booklets with lots of information; like school funding, it takes time to decipher everything.

I felt frustrated with the budget committee’s vote on the teachers contract.  The 6 -1 vote against, I felt, was based on the size of the number presented rather than the percentages and facts within the contract.  This is due to the reality that this group of employees are a $25M part of the budget.  Any increase, no matter how small, requires a large amount of money from the taxpayer.  I would like to add, I respect the Budget Committee’s position and if I had taken the time to do this work before they voted, it may have been a different vote.

SalaryMeritTotal Possible Compensation Life of ContractPossible Increase Total over Three YearsHealth Insurance Buyout
Council 93 Public Safety (proposed) (Police, Capt/Lt., Fire Chief/MarshallYr1 - 0%
Yr2 - 2%
Yr 3 - 2%
Range 0 - 3% Yr 1 - 0% - 3%
Yr 2 - 2% - 5%
Yr 3 - 2% - 5%
4% - 13%$2,500
Council 93 Unit B Town Admin (proposed) Building Inspect, Public Works, Town PlannerYr1 - 0%
Yr2 - 2%
Yr 3 -2%
Range 0 - 3% Yr 1 - 0% - 3%
Yr 2 - 2% - 5%
Yr 3 - 2% - 5%
4% - 13%$2,500
Local 1801 Depart Sec, Deputy Tax Collector, Payroll clerk, etcYr1- 0% + 1 Step(3%-9.4%)
Yr2-2% + 1 Step (3%-9.4%)
Yr3-2% + 1 step (3%-9.4%)
NoneYr 1 - o% - 9.4%
Yr 2 - 2% - 9.4%
Yr 3 - 2% - 9.4%
4% - 28.2%$2,500
TeachersYr 1 - range (2% - 2.1%)
Yr2 - range (2.1% - 2.25%)
Yr3 - range (2.5% - 4%)
NoneYr 1 - range (2% - 2.1%)
Yr2 - range (2.1% - 2.25%)
Yr3 - range (2.5% - 4%)
6.6% - 8.2%$500
Allied Health ProfessionalsYr 1 - range (2% -3%)
Yr2 - range (2.25% - 3%)
Yr3 - range (2.5% - 3%)
NoneYr 1 - range (2% -3%)
Yr2 - range (2.25% - 3%)
Yr3 - range (2.5% - 3%)
6.8% - 9% $500

I have left out health care, sick days, vacation days and language items.  Many of those items are similar or wash out in the end as being nearly equal.  Also they are so complex when compared, it is hard to follow them.

The town unions’ concessions to have a 0% increase on the salary line item is commendable. If the teachers bargaining unit had structured the contract with the school board that way it may have looked better. The problem is it may have come out costing more over the three year life of the contract.

Zero percent is not zero when you look at the full three years of the town contracts.  Additionally, on two of the town contracts they include the possibility of Merit raises, something the school district contract does not have.  They don’t show up on the warrant article because merit increases are included in the general budget.  Year one for Local 1801 has 0% but “+1 step” for those of us in the private sector, “steps” are hard to understand.  They are increases in pay; the employee moves up the pay scale automatically.

The bottom line, over the three years, not each year but the total for all three years.

  • Town 4% to 28.2%
  • School 6.6% to 9%

Another area to focus on is the difference between town and school health insurance buyout.  The town provides $2,500 to an employee if they do not take the insurance.  The school district only provides $500.  Presently 149 get the cash buy out, teachers are 93 of those employees.  If they were town employees that would total $298,000 more in benefits to the school employees, just for one year!  Likely if they were getting an extra $2,000 even more would opt in.  The schools have offered $500 in the last 12 years I have held an elected position.  The town has been dropping down this benefit from $8,000 for those 12 years.  Good thing too!

For those that will be voting against all union contracts, I am sure this information was not needed.  But for those of you voting on the teachers contract please consider the facts before you fill in the oval next Tuesday.

This is what you will vote on Tuesday March 13th, our valued asset, good talent is not “0%” it’s not free, Town or School.

Steve Young

Londonderry

Steve Young is presently a school board member running for re-election and voted to support the teachers contract. He is also one of the publishers of Londonderry Hometown Online News

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