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June 13, 2015



IT is Not all Doom 'n Gloom in Berlin Towne, Rocky. And those Buildings Needed to be Demolished. No Sensible person would bewail the demolition of dilapidated property would They ?

Berlin named ‘City on the Rise’ by NH Magazine

Published Date Tuesday, 02 June 2015 00:10
Written by Kirstan Lukasak

BERLIN — The place that was once known as the 'City that trees built' is getting a new lease on life when N.H. Magazine picked Berlin as the 'City on the Rise.'

Each year the N.H. Magazine rolls out a lineup of places and businesses that are worthy of being labeled as 'Best of N.H.'

Among the categories includes 'City on the Rise,' which highlights a city or town that shows new life and promise.

Berlin was chosen by N.H. Magazines editor Rick Broussard, because of the city's commitment to putting Berlin back on the map. He cited the work of the chamber to rebrand the city using a new slogan.

"The new motto, 'Your Adventure Starts Here,' introduced by the Androscoggin Valley Chamber of Commerce exemplifies the city's and the regions push to turn Berlin and the surrounding area into a hub for tourism and we are happy to that it's working," said Broussard.

The Chamber of Commerce has been working hard to make the North Country a destination spot for tourists, and their hard work is paying off. The abundance of quality outdoor activities, lodging, shopping and restaurants make this area a popular location for travelers.

"We are thrilled to be marketing our area in ways never done before! While we realize that tourism is only a part of our economic recovery, our businesses are reporting a positive impact due to the increased commerce of this new economy! More than ever, our events and partnerships with the City of Berlin, Town of Gorham, Androscoggin Valley ATV Club, the Main Street Program and others have resulted in a change of attitude about how we and others feel about our community! There is truly a sense of pride about all we have to offer and who we are," said Mark Belanger, president of the Androscoggin Valley Chamber of Commerce.

Mayor Paul Grenier said the award shows that people in the state are noticing the efforts the city is making to improve its appearance and attract visitors.

Grenier said the city has made a lot of progress in the last ten years especially in cleaning up blighted housing and buildings.

"It's starting to make a difference," he said.
Grenier cited the work of Community Development Director Pamela Laflamme, City Manager James Wheeler, and Housing Coordinator Linda White. He said the three work very hard and don't receive enough credit for the work they do.

The city has also worked with other organizations to promote the region to ATV enthusiasts. The city council has approved allowing ATVs to operate on city streets to access trails and businesses.

The mayor announced the award at the beginning of Wednesday's budget hearing, but the official announcement will not be made until the 2015 Best of N.H. party held in Manchester on June 16.



"Don't worry be happy".....


That's the Spirit, Rocky ! .... after All, there Ain't Nothing You can do about it, is there ?


You're right, one person can't fix stupid.


Perhaps You should move to Canada ?


Antonio Andolini

"Oh, we won't give in,
let's go living in the past."
Ian Scott Anderson, Hal David

"Gorham Paper owes AVRRDD $1.1 million, starts making payments

by Edith Tucker
June 10, 2015

BERLIN — Gorham Paper & Tissue (GPT) started in mid-September 2014 to make a $3,600 payment every week to the Androscoggin Valley Regional Refuse Disposal District (AVRRDD) for its tipping fees, executive director Sharon Gauthier explained on Thursday.

As of May 18, GPT started making $10,000 per week payments for Landfill Gas (LFG), a byproduct of Mt. Carberry for which the paper mill is its sole customer.

In both accounts, dollar amounts over current billings, if any, are being earmarked to apply to older invoices.

As of May 31, nearly $18,000 in tipping fees had been earmarked to pay down unpaid bills. These overages will be accumulated and paid on a once-a-year basis to reduce old debt.

Older invoices, racked up since 2013, now total slightly over $1.1 million: $791,823 for LFG, and $309,028 in tipping fees.

May's minutes reflect Gauthier's relief at securing payments from GPT: 'The Executive Director reported that GPT has paid the District the amount requested for the past two weeks.'

The GPT payments were made in response to AVRRDD board pressure.

The AVRRDD board had voted unanimously at its April 29 meeting that 'effective May 18, 2015, GPT will be required to make prepayment of $10,000 per week for Mt. Carberry Landfill Gas and if prepayment is not received the landfill gas will be shut off to GPT and flared until the prepayment is received.'

The board also voted 'that should Mt. Carberry Landfill no longer be the primary disposal site for GPT sludge and other wastes and … becomes GPT's backup disposal site that, effective when the change is made, GPT will be charged the current district rate for tipping fees, which is $67 a ton for 2015.'

Under the agreement made when AVRRDD purchased Mt. Carberry, the paper mill is only charged a tipping fee of $19 a ton.

This motion was made in executive session, and the board voted to seal the minutes until GPT had been notified of its decision. The minutes regarding both GPT decisions were unsealed on May 4 after the paper company was notified of these decisions.

Ten communities are members of the Disposal District: City of Berlin, Dummer, Errol, Gorham, Jefferson, Milan, Northumberland, Randolph, Stark and the Unincorporated Places. Despite their disparities in population, each receives only a single vote. Berlin Mayor Paul Grenier, who also serves as one of three county commissioners, represents the county's Unincorporated Places.

When interviewed briefly on Thursday, Grenier said that he remains optimistic about GPT and understands its papermaking operations are now turning a profit.

'Gorham Paper is working on diversifying its products; it's running the No. 6 tissue machine 24/7 and trying to fill out orders on no. 9 — a.k.a. Mr. Nibroc (that makes away-from-home toweling),' Grenier said.

One no-longer-used paper machine — no. 2 — has been dismantled and sold, and another — no. 3 — is being dismantled now, he said, adding that he believes both have been sold for scrap.

GPT, part of the Patriarch Partners portfolio, also owes money to the Town of Gorham, where the Cascades paper mill is located. A portion of the back taxes is being challenged by the company, since it believes that some of its property assessment is pegged too high.

The total taxes, plus interest, owed Gorham for 2013 and 2014 that is not under disputed= is approximately $390,000, explained tax collector Carol Porter.

The latest half-year 2015 tax bill mailed out on Thursday is for $192,921, due on July 6. That total, however, includes monies that are based on the same disputed assessment."


Antonio Andolini

Such a shame no City official could show up for WREN's ribbon cutting ceremony. Seems the leaders at City Hall live in their own oblivious world.


It's a bubble Antonio, it acts as an echo chamber where only those sounds from inside the bubble can be heard. The bubble was formed during those "paper making years" when the outside world was only seen as a distraction, we had our own reality and our own economy. I thought the bubble would have burst when the stacks came down, but no, that last stack has propped-up the bubble temporarily, but sooner or later....................


............ I would not hold My breath on that forlorn hope of Yours, Rocky. As in, Not in Your Lifetime.

So. The Hue and Cry over the BearCat machine has died away with the seemingly endless Wintah, and yet there will still be an Election for Mayor and some of the Councillors this coming November.

- Who here in Berlin can Slay the Beast ???

Antonio Andolini

Ah oui, Rocky. Most of those banging loudest in that echo chamber will be gone when that bubble bursts; leaving the rest wondering what went wrong.

"All we do crumbles to the ground, though we refuse to see
Dust in the wind, all we are is dust in the wind." Kerry Livgren.

Alea iacta est.


.... Like "Hockey Town" who was Up to His eyeballs in Hock ???
Mama Mia, HIS Bubble Sure Burst !

But Seriously, WHO in Berlin can Challenge Paul in November ? It's a Question with No Positive Answer.


Nobody comes to mind at the moment, but then there's no way to know who might consider running. It's my opinion that Paul Grenier is one of the most clever politicians in Coos County, he's above all a "Politician".


Well Said, Rocky. To His Credit, Paul Runs a Tight Fiscal Ship here in Berlin. He Screwed up royally on the BearCat Deal, but I doubt He had a Choice in the Matter as I Firmly Believe that the paperwork was delivered to Berlin All Filled Out minus some Local Signatures. That "Die was Cast" as they say. But there is No one else Capable of the ahh "Aplomb" shown by Paul that is willing to Challenge Him. Mr. Evans was too much of a Wimp the time before last, and We're definitely scraping the bottom of the Barrel now.

- BTW, when IS the Filing deadline ???

Antonio Andolini

Spence for Mayor!

The City Clerk can tell you when the filing period ends.


No Way, Paul's gonna beat Aime Tondreau's Record(s). You just wait n' see.


Antonio Andolini

Although some just don't want to admit it, Berlin, these days, is a much different place than in the 50s.


Antonio, please give us your perspective on that change.

Antonio Andolini

Poorest town in New Hampshire.


...28th! That'll look good on the Maya's resume!


Ahh, Yes. We Read That on FaceBook Yesterday, Eric Catman Posted It. But America, these days, is a much different place than in the 50s. And Electing a "Kid" isn't going to change the way Berlin Operates. He will be Stymied on Day One and a Laughingstock thereafter.


- But on the "Flip Side", Does Maya Paul REALLY Believe that Berlin will be Allowed to Bid on Smith Hydro ???


How will Berlin Afford to Buy It ? And as Rocky has Asked, How can Berlin even Operate It ?


Back on the Campaign Trail ...

45 times Secretary Clinton pushed the trade bill she now opposes

By Jake Tapper, and The Lead staff

Updated 6:59 PM ET, Mon June 15, 2015

Washington (CNN)Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, as a candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination, seems reluctant to take a firm position on an issue dividing her party: whether President Obama should have fast-track trading authority for the immense trade deal he has been negotiating, the Trans-Pacific Partnership. With some progressive voters eyeing her with some skepticism, and facing a challenge (such as it is) from candidates on her left, she is being advised to tack in that direction.

President Obama has been pushing hard for the deal, while Democrats in the House of Representatives on Friday revolted and voted against a key part of the legislation. One told me, "there was a very strong concern about the lost jobs and growing income inequality," adding, pointedly: "Ms. Clinton should take notice."

She clearly did. After first dodging the issue, on Sunday in Iowa, Clinton said that "the President should listen to and work with his allies in Congress, starting with (House Minority Leader) Nancy Pelosi, who have expressed their concerns about the impact that a weak agreement would have on our workers, to make sure we get the best, strongest deal possible. And if we don't get it, there should be no deal."

Clinton said, "there are some specifics in there that could and should be changed. So I am hoping that's what happens now -- let's take the lemons and turn it into lemonade."


Antonio Andolini

Speaking of hydropower, contrast the tactics of TDI-New England and those of Eversource Energy:

"Developer agrees to pay $284 million to help clean Lake Champlain

By Jack Newsham Globe Correspondent June 15, 2015

A project that would bring Canadian hydropower to New England by submerging a cable under Lake Champlain cleared a major hurdle when the developer struck a deal with an influential environmental advocacy group.

TDI-New England said Monday that it would pay $284 million to clean up the lake and promote renewable energy in Vermont in exchange for an agreement from the Conservation Law Foundation not to oppose the project.

So far, the project is the only one of at least five Canada-to-New England clean power proposals to have such a deal.

The developer plans to spend $1.2 billion to lay a 154-mile, 1,000-megawatt power line from the Canadian border to the Central Vermont town of Ludlow by burying the cable at the bottom of Lake Champlain for most of its route. The project, known as the New England Clean Power Link, could supply up to 1 million homes with electricity after its planned completion in 2018.

Previously, TDI had agreed to contribute more than $160 million to reduce the impact of laying the cable under the lake, which would stir up sediment and have minor effects on underwater life and human uses of the lake. Still, the new contributions won’t boost the cost of the project because they would be paid out of operating revenue over the cable’s 40-year lifespan, said Don Jessome, chief executive of TDI-New England.

'We’re getting a settled agreement with one of the premier environmental groups in New England,' he said. 'That is very important to us.'

Opposition by the Conservation Law Foundation and other groups has slowed down other proposals to import hydropower from Canada. Foremost among them has been the Northern Pass, a plan by Eversource Energy to build 180 miles of above-ground power lines through New Hampshire. Although a government review of the project’s environmental impact hasn’t been released, environmental groups have said it would ruin scenic vistas and risks harming wildlife.

Christopher Kilian, the Vermont office director for the foundation, said Eversource and other developers have taken an 'adversarial posture' over environmental concerns. With TDI, however, he said his group’s 'interests were satisfied.'

Whether a project gets built requires more than regulatory approval, said Greg Cunningham, director of the Conservation Law Foundation’s clean energy and climate change program. A project’s success will also depend on whether it can line up a supply deal with power generators in Canada and whether New England policy makers and the regional grid operator approve.

Public support for the TDI-New England project was unclear.

Kerrick Johnson, a vice president for Vermont Electric Power Co., the state’s transmission company that is partly controlled by a public benefit corporation, said the project had 'many, many miles to go.' Still, he said, promises of improvements to roads and Lake Champlain have helped raise public support.

'Within Vermont, the on-the-ground team for TDI has done a very good job in connecting with Vermont stakeholders,' he said. 'They’ve made commitments of a lot of money on issues of critical importance to Vermonters.'

Officials in several towns affected by the project couldn’t be reached for comment, and the office of Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin did not reply to a request for comment.

Other possible ways to tap Canadian hydropower resources include the Maine and Vermont Green Line projects, which have been proposed by National Grid and electric developer Anbaric Transmission.

National Grid and the Maine utility Emera also have discussed an overland route called the Northeast Energy Link that would wind from Central Maine to Boston. The developers plan to provide more details once energy policy makers in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut finish hammering out a way for major renewable energy projects to be considered by utilities in those states."



- Go Bernie !!!


By Joseph Curl - The Washington Times - Tuesday, June 16, 2015

A new poll in New Hampshire shows the underfunded upstart candidacy of virtually unknown Bernie Sanders is giving Hillary Clinton a serious challenge in the state known for loving underdogs.

The survey by Suffolk University found the 41 percent of likely Democratic primary voters would back Hillary, while 31 percent said they’d back the Vermont senator, an independent who identifies as a Socialist.

Hillary is commanding scads of TV time, having delivered not one but two announcement speeches. Her every move is captured by cable TV stations and aired ad infinitum. But Sanders has a hard time getting coverage for just about any speech he gives, and travels with a fairly small entourage, unlike the massive motorcade and private jets that ferry Team Clinton about town.

Sanders is running as a far-left candidate, following in the footsteps of liberal hearthrob Sen. Elizabeth Warren, who was boosted by the media but decided not to run.

“The poll is not a home run for Bernie Sanders, but it could be characterized as a line shot to deep left field,” David Paleologos, director of the Suffolk University Political Research Center, told NH1 News.

The survey showed that Hillary led among women but trailed with men. Just 9 percent say they have an unfavorable opinion of Sanders; Hillary’s number is twice that.

And Sanders is closing the gap: A survey released just a few days ago by Morning Consultant put Clinton at 44 percent and Sanders at 32 percent.

Asked about the poll, New Hampshire Democratic Party Chairman Ray Buckley told NH1 News that “we have always said that this is going to be a contested primary. We have always said that New Hampshire enjoys tripping up frontrunners. Just ask George W. Bush in 2000. Just ask Ed Muskie in 1972, and all through the decades.”

“So it is not surprising the polls have tightened. There’s a genuine excitement about Sen. Sanders campaign,” Buckley added. “We’ve got an exciting primary on our hands. It’s going to attract a lot of new voters. “

When Sanders predicted he would win New Hampshire, many scoffed. Maybe he’s not that far off.


Antonio Andolini

Although it is way too early to care much about polls, this poll by Suffolk University Political Research Center (never heard of them before) does have some (more) interesting points:

"Poll: Sanders surges in New Hampshire

Democratic presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders is gaining ground on Hillary Clinton, especially among voters who know both candidates, according to New Hampshire poll results released Tuesday.

The poll by Suffolk University Boston shows about 41 percent of respondents favored the former secretary of state, while 31 percent preferred the Vermont senator.

That gap shrunk dramatically when pollsters factored out respondents who never heard of Sanders. Among respondents who know both candidates, 38 percent chose Clinton as their top choice, compared with 35 percent for Sanders, said David Paleologos, director of Suffolk University Political Research Center in Boston.

'What that tells us is the more Bernie Sanders introduces himself, the higher the probability the race will continue to close,' Paleologos said.

About 11.8 percent of respondents had never heard of Sanders, compared with 1.4 percent who had never heard of Clinton, poll results show.

Among respondents in five counties — four of which border Vermont — Sanders prevailed 47 percent to Clinton's 26 percent. The counties were Carroll, Cheshire, Coos, Grafton and Sullivan.

New Hampshire's geographic proximity to Vermont might give Sanders an advantage in border counties, but political philosophy trumped geographical factors, Paleologos said.

'Remember, this is the area of the state that Howard Dean carried early on,' Paleologos said of the former governor and presidential candidate from Vermont. 'It is an area that doesn't really care what other people think. Howard Dean was strong in the 2004 primary, so there are a lot of similarities between Howard Dean voters and Bernie Sanders voters.'

Some of voters' main reasons for opposing Clinton, poll results show, were:

•'They don't trust her,' 12 percent.

•She has 'been around too long,' 9 percent.

•They are 'tired of the Clintons,' 6 percent.

Specifically, more than 50 percent of respondents said Clinton's use of a private email server and deleted emails during her stint as secretary of state would hurt her electability.

Less than half of respondents said the Clinton Foundation's acceptance of contributions from foreign governments, along with her handling of the Benghazi attacks, would hurt Clinton in the general election.

There were no questions addressing reasons for opposing Sanders, Paleologos said.

The Clinton and Sanders campaigns did not respond to requests for comment Tuesday on the poll results.

In the poll, Vice President Joe Biden, who has yet to say whether he is running, ranked third at 7 percent, and declared candidate former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley was fourth at 3 percent. Former Virginia Sen. Jim Webb and former Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Chafee each received about 1 percent.

Voters indicated health care is the most important issue in the campaign, followed by jobs, taxes, cost of higher education and national debt.

The poll of 500 likely Democratic primary voters was conducted by phone Thursday through Monday and had a margin of error of 4.4 percentage points.

New Hampshire's Democratic primary is set for Feb. 9.

Contact Paris Achen at 802-660-1874 and pachen@freepressmedia.com. Follow her atwww.twitter.com/parisachen and https://www.facebook.com/ColTrends."


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