"Real liberty is neither found in despotism or the extremes of democracy, but in moderate governments.
Alexander Hamilton

Monday, September 17, 2018

Editorial: A fair chance to get a job

(This editorial caught my attention last evening. One line in particular: approximately one-third of American adults over age 23 have a criminal record, about the same percentage of adults with a college degree.  "Fair chance" hiring sounds like a win-win to me.)
Sunday, September 16, 2018
It’s been there seemingly forever, usually toward the bottom of the job application, one form or another of the box awaiting a checkmark. “Have you ever been convicted of a crime? Yes or no. Felony or misdemeanor?” The box, in fact, appears on the employment application of this newspaper.
The box, if checked, is a coffin for a host of career options. It’s time for employers, including the city of Concord, to give offenders a fair shot at re-entering society by eliminating the box and instead asking the question only of applicants in the final stage of the employment process. Called “fair-chance hiring” the change gives qualified applicants the opportunity to state their offense and explain how they have been rehabilitated.
In New Hampshire, a felon can’t work as a bartender or serve alcohol without a waiver from the state liquor commission. Many of the 144 occupations that require licensing by the state routinely reject applicants with a criminal record, as do many public and private employers. As a result, according to a recent report by the American Civil Liberties Union of New Hampshire and UNH Law School professor Albert Scherr, in a state with the lowest unemployment rate in the land, employers are unfairly rejecting thousands of worthy applicants out of hand.
The report estimates, based on national statistics, that nearly 350,000 New Hampshire residents have a criminal record of some sort and 90,000 Granite Staters are felons. Nationally, 60 percent of people released from incarceration are unemployed one year later. Those who do find jobs earn 40 percent less than people with no criminal record.
A crime committed in youth can haunt an offender for a lifetime. Offenders interviewed for the report described applying for dozens of jobs with no response, of securing an “under-the-table job” for pay far below what a non-offender would receive. Housing, already difficult to find at an affordable price, can be almost impossible for a felon to secure. The rules of the federal Section 8 housing program bar not just a felon convicted of a sex crime or offenses that arise from drug or alcohol abuse, but everyone in his or her family.
To date, 11 states, including Massachusetts and Vermont, have adopted some form of fair-chance hiring practices. Hundreds of municipalities have done likewise, as have employers such as Starbucks, Google, Coca-Cola, Walmart and Facebook. Studies, including one done by the Johns Hopkins Health Resource Center, found that the employee retention rates for people with criminal records is substantially higher than average. Eager to prove they’ve turned their life around, they typically become loyal, hard-working employees. Difficulty finding stable housing and a decent job substantially increase the risk of recidivism. Many released offenders experience periods of homelessness, which increases the likelihood that rather than rejoin society, they will return to the lifestyle that led to prison. Too often that means a return to the drug use that’s claiming hundreds of New Hampshire lives every year. There is a better way.
Nationally, the report said, approximately one-third of American adults over age 23 have a criminal record, about the same percentage of adults with a college degree. Every year in New Hampshire, more than 1,000 people are released from jail or prison and almost all need a job and a place to live. The box is an unnecessary barrier to securing both.
We encourage employers to consider what role the box plays in their hiring practices. It’s a small step toward a more humane, stable and productive society.

Saturday, September 15, 2018

Moultonboro Selectmen Discuss Future of Former Lions Club Property

The Bos met on Wednesday afternoon in a work session for one topic: what to do with the Lions Club?  The video of this meeting can be found here on Town Hall Streams, just 53 minutes or so.

The town has utilized a construction company to inspect the property and they advised that the shell of the building could be reused after gutting the interior and exterior, a rough savings of $100/sq. ft. versus new construction. The construction company has an architect that they have worked with in the past to sketch proposed changes/additions in order to determine a firm price for Town Meeting. The BoS met on September 12th to decide what they wanted to present to the architect.

High on the list of factors weighing on the decision was the current use of the building by first and foremost, Meals on Wheels and the many other groups that use the property. How would these programs be continued if the Lions Club property were not available? The building also can only accommodate one use at a time, limiting its usefulness as a multipurpose facility. The argument was made that whatever is decided, it needs to meet the needs of the entire community, not just one specific segment.

It was determined that no decision can be made without looking at the cost for different options.

They agreed by consensus to seek the following cost estimates:

  1. Basic upgrade to the current building to a usable standard
  2. The 2016 community center design minus the gym overlayed  on the existing Lions Club footprint or with an addition
  3. Cost of the 2016 community center plan minus the gym to be built new on the Lions Club property
  4. Cost to build the 2016 community center on the Taylor property minus the gym and,
  5. The cost to build a gym as a stand alone add on for all scenarios.
The original plan was to have the architect present his number and sketches to the BoS on September 27th, but it was agreed to have that presentation at a later date to allow the architect sufficient time to complete the work. 

Thursday, September 13, 2018

Voting Info/Turnout

Overall, the Tuesday primary in Moultonboro saw an excellent turnout. Including absentee ballots, a total of 1217 ballots were cast in Moultonboro.
Thanks to all who made the primary voting a success. The work of the Supervisors of the Checklist, Town Clerk and staff, the Ballot Clerks, facilities personnel, Police department and Selectmen is not glamorous. And it doesn't begin at 7am on voting day, nor does it end at 7pm. It is often tedious work. Suffice it to say that many hours are spent before and after to make it look easy when voters show up to vote. A  personal thank you to Jerry Hopkins, who was Moderator pro-tem. As a new Moderator like myself, he was an invaluable asset.

In terms of numbers, here are some raw stats:

Total number of voters on the Voter Checklist at the end of the election:   4,159
Undeclared voters before voting:   1,719
Undeclared voters at the end of the election: 1,304
Voters Registered to vote on election day:  30
Absentee ballots:  71

In seven weeks, we do it all over again. If you are leaving before voting day November 6th, don't forget to get an absentee ballot.
See you at the polls!

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Carroll County Supplemental Budget Hearing September 17th

The county is seeking a supplemental appropriation of $382,852 for the purposes as outlined in the public hearing notice below. In a conversation at the polls on Tuesday, Selectman Wakefield learned from Commissioner Hounsel that funding for these items if approved, would come from the roughly $4.7 million undesignated fund balance and not from a supplemental tax assessment.

Monday, September 10, 2018

Get Out and Vote!

Tomorrow, September 11th is primary voting day. Get out and vote! Moultonboro polls will be open at the Life Safety Building from 7a to 7p.

If you are an undeclared voter ( no party affiliation) you may declare your party affiliation and vote the ballot of that party. After voting you can if you wish change back to unaffiliated.
If you have declared a party affiliation, you may only vote in that party's primary.
Hope to see you at polls tomorrow!

Paul Punturieri 
Moultonboro Town Moderator

Sunday, September 9, 2018

Q&A: Carroll County House District 08-Part 2

This is the response from Richard Stuart (d), running unopposed in the September 11th primary.

I am Richard Stuart of Sandwich! I am running for the Carroll County floterial district 8 NH House of Representatives seat! I felt privileged to be asked to run. I had previously served in the NH House from 2008-10 from Laconia before moving to Sandwich! I have described it as a PhD kind of experience as we learn so much dealing with hundreds of bills each session on a tremendous variety of issues. I am a progressive democrat on most issues especially interested in public education funding, saving public lands and water such as the County Property, preventing damage from Climate change and protecting rights of women, immigrants, lgbtq folk etc. I am happy to discuss any issues with anyone interested.   randrstuart@gmail.com

Saturday, September 8, 2018

Q&A: Carroll County Commissioner 1st District -Part 3

Responses below from Commissioner Mark Hounsel (r)

My name is Mark Hounsell.  I am a 12th generation NH native.  I was born at Memorial Hospital in Conway in 1952 on my mother’s 29th birthday.  I grew up in the part of town that the Kancamaugus Highway was built over. I still live here.  I was raised in a family where we were taught that public service was to be a part of lives. My grandparents were Roosevelt Democrats and my fathers were staunch Republicans. The atmosphere of family political debates were vibrant and at times legendary.  At a young age I became a lifelong student of the process of this, our Constitutional Republic.
For the last 42 years I have dedicated myself towards the eternal vigilance of our democracy.  A duty Thomas Jefferson told us was the cost required for keeping the American liberties our founders gave us.
I have been on Municipal Budget Committees, a Library Trustee, School Boards, Boards of Selectmen, State Senate and currently I am the County Commissioner for District 1 of Carroll County.  In addition, I serve as a member of the State’s Public Employee Labor Relations Board.  I am humbled and honored to serve. Humbled because I have been entrusted to stand vigilantly to preserve liberty; honored that I have been elected by the people to care for their needs and expectations.
I have a very good understanding and appreciation for the law and the process of governing.  I get things done.
After many years of increasing tax rates it has been my great pleasure to help in the lowering of the county tax rates and returning $1 million to the taxpayers in 2018.  I would encourage all to review the county’s 2017 Annual Report to see for yourself the current successes and stability of Carroll County Government.  You can read the entire report by going to https://www.carrollcountynh.net/home/pages/2017-annual-report-0
The biggest problem facing Carroll County government is the staffing shortages at the County Nursing Home.  This current challenge is to continue to fight for the necessary funding from the County Delegation in order to address these nursing shortages.  The need to educate certain members of the delegation as to their roles in the process is severe.  For some unexplained reason Representative Frank McCarthy, and now his wife Terry who is running for a seat on the commission, continue to broadcast errant information about the duties and functions of the delegation.  Over and over again, for the last few years, we have heard Frank McCarthy mistakenly claim that the county delegation is the “legislative body” of county government.  IT IS NOT.  The delegation is the “appropriating body” for county government.  The entire New Hampshire General Court, the House of Representatives and the Senate together, are the ONLY legislative body for ALL governments in New Hampshire including State, County and Municipal.  ONLY the General Court can create or change RSA (Revised Statutes Annotated). In other words, ONLY the House of Representatives and the Senate together can make laws, which is what legislative bodies do.  The county delegation CANNOT pass laws, therefore they cannot be a ;legislative body - pure and simple!
The members of the Carroll County Delegation represent only 4% of the House of Representatives, which in turn is only 50% of the General Court.  So a honest presentation of the facts reveals that while each member of the County Delegation are members of the General Court as a group by themselves they ARE NOT a legislative body.
In their capacity as representatives to the House from districts within Carroll County each of them serve as the fifteen members of the body the General Court has determined to be the body that raises taxes and appropriate funds to operations of county government.  As much as some of them (including Mr. and Mrs. McCarthy) misrepresent they do not have any authority as to governing the affairs of the county.  That responsibility and authority belongs to the Board of Commissioners.  Who I believe are doing a stellar job on behalf of the citizens.
In my first term as commissioner the tax rate was reduced and county government was able to return the previously $1 million to the taxpayers in 2018.
Mrs. McCarthy has misrepresented what I have said by twisting my words.  Terry McCarthy is errantly claiming that I have said the relationship between the delegation and the commissioners is, “meant to be strained”.  I never said any such thing!  What any serious student of American government should know is our founders created a government of three branches who have checks and balances on each other in one form or another.  There is a purposeful, needed and healthy “tension” between each branch.  This tension is similar to that of a guitar string.  If the string is connected on one end but not the other it will lay loose and would be silent and ineffective when plucked.  Yet, when properly installed and the proper “TENSION” applied the guitar can make beautifulmusic.  If you tighten it too much one will put too much strain (conflict) and the string will break and it will have to be fixed.  The strain caused to our county government is due in a large part to the relentless misinformation delivered first by Representative Frank McCarthy and now his wife candidate Terry McCarthy.  One should wonder if the conflict of interests by having a husband/wife as delegate/commissioner team will present a more severe strain (conflict) within county government?
There is no question about it that Frank McCarthy does not like it whenever anyone disagrees with him.  I am not Frank McCarthy’s “yes man”.  Will Terry McCarthy be able to make the same claim if she is elected?  Tension is good - strain (conflict) is not. I hope voters give consideration to this before they cast their ballots.
In closing, I would like to thank the people of Carroll County for entrusting me with this solemn duty for my first term.  The record clearly shows, we have a healthy fund balance, an excellent professional administrative leadership staff and dedicated employees.  The county’s financial condition is excellent!  I would like to continue to help and I believe my caring heart and my honest approach serves us all very well.  I would appreciate your kind consideration and vote at the polls on Tuesday September 11th and again on November 13th. Thank you.

Q&A : Carroll County District 04

There are three candidates on the Democrat ballot for two seats: John Morrisey, Moultonboro, Caroline Nesbitt, Sandwich and Paul Punturieri, Moultonboro. The Republican candidates are running unopposed.

Caroline Nesbitt

1.       Introduction/Tell us about yourself.

I’m Caroline Nesbitt, one of three candidates for State Rep in Carroll County District 4. I’m an immigrant – my dad was British & met my mom, an Army brat, in post-war London. We first came to NH in 1965. In 1973 I moved to Sandwich after graduating from the first class of women at Kenyon College in Ohio with a degree in History, & have lived & worked here ever since as a writer, a theatre professional (I founded the 501c3 educational Shakespeare company Advice To The Players & am a member of Actors Equity Association & SAG-AFTRA), & professional horseman (among other things, I did a lot of judging & clinics with 4H, etc.). I’ve always worked with young people as a teacher, mentor, coach, & friend; the most satisfying work in the world. My partner Robert Butcher & I live on a farm in North Sandwich, & I have a deep interest in land use & environmental issues. I have a stepson & a son, both grown.
2.       Why are you running for this office?

We each have a time when we have to stop complaining and step up to the task of helping to make our communities better places to live & work. This is that time for me. Also, it really grieves me to be re-fighting the same battles I thought we were done with 40 years ago – protecting our fragile environment, achieving civil rights for all races, colors, & creeds, and approaching gender equality in the workplace & under the law. I want to be a part of the solution.

3.       What are the biggest challenges facing Carroll County in the next 5-10 years and how in your elected capacity will you address them?

The problems we face are really all a part of one problem: How to protect our vital forests, land, water, & air from the drastic effects of climate change, population growth, & inappropriate development while providing adequate healthcare, affordable housing, community services that include a superior public education, & sustainable well-paid jobs for our young people. We tend to try to solve these issues as if they were separate. They are not. If we don’t take steps to stabilize our natural environment & the effects of climate change, the rest won’t matter because it will no longer sustain us. If elected, I would like to address these issues head-on in conversation with all the voices that make up the communities of Sandwich, Moultonboro, & Tuftonboro, to find a road forward that best suits our needs.

4.       If elected/re-elected what will be your top three goals?

My first focus will be to address the effects of population growth, climate change, & pollution on our surroundings. We have water that is growing too warm to support brook trout & that is increasingly affected by silt & toxic run-off from residences & farms. We have productive farms going out of business because property taxes are too heavy a burden, & valuable land lost to poorly thought-out development. Our warming climate is wreaking havoc on our maple industry & on the health of our forests. Warmer temperatures also mean a longer season for ticks, with a devastating effect on the moose population, & an even larger crisis from tick-borne diseases in humans. The list goes on. A healthy environment, clean energy & industries, & creative land use are a good base from which to address our need for affordable housing & jobs for our young people. Secondly, I feel that public education is at the very center of a Democracy. It teaches kids tolerance & a greater understanding of people who don’t look like them or believe the same things, as well as providing a level playing field for learners from all walks of life. Public funding should be spent on public education, & on making that education the best it can possibly be. If that means that wealthier towns help those with fewer resources to guarantee an equal quality of education across the board, so be it. Today’s kids are tomorrow’s leaders. We want those leaders to be well informed & well balanced. Third, I fully support Medicare for all, the funding & operation of treatment & rehab centers that address the needs of those affected by opioid addiction, & more attention paid to the quality of care our military veterans deserve.

5.       What are the biggest obstacles to achieving these goals?

This is New Hampshire, so funding is always the biggest obstacle to achieving any goals. None of us like paying taxes, but if we want to take care of our people we have to find reasonable ways to do that. Property taxes &  casinos are not sustainable answers, nor is the constant erosion of the salaries of our teachers & public workers. That said, New Hampshire is rich in its resources, not least of which are its human resources. I really believe that the same creative drive that has led so many people to create so many diverse & successful entrepreneurial small businesses in our towns can be put to use to figure this out.

6.       Closing remarks

Thanks for your consideration. And thank-you, Paul, for making these interviews public. That said, please vote on Tuesday! We all have power to make change if we vote!

John Morrisey

1.      Introduction/Tell us about yourself.

I have been a homeowner in Moultonborough for 34 years and a permanent resident for 9 years.  I have a degree in Mathematics from Northeastern U. and spent most of my career in international sales of high tech products.  I have been a business owner for the past 28 years.

2.      Why are you running for this office?

To improve the lives of the residents of Sandwich, Moultonborough and Tuftonboro, and Carroll County.  I am against schools vouchers and am pro-choice.  We should encourage renewable energy in the state.

3.      What are the biggest challenges facing Carroll County in the next 5-10 years and how in your elected capacity will you address them?

The biggest challenge is diversifying and growing the Carroll County economy with jobs that provide a livable wage, workers that are trained and educated for the future jobs, and housing that is affordable.  In Maine over 1,000 farms have been started in the last decade by people under 35 to take advantage of the farm to table movement.  We can do this in Carroll County using the farm as an incubator.  I will work with the towns, Carroll County government, and the private sector to address these issues

4.      If elected/re-elected what will be your top three goals?

Economy, Education, Healthcare

5.      What are the biggest obstacles to achieving these goals?

We need to attract young families to our area and provide them with affordable housing and living wage jobs.  We need to increase our spending on higher education, New Hampshire ranks 50th in higher education investment.  Universal healthcare should be the goal as the healthcare system is under attack nationally.

6.       Closing remarks

                Government needs to be a constructive partner with towns, the county, and the private sector

Paul Punturieri
1.       Introduction/Tell us about yourself.
I was born and raised in Brooklyn , NY. I am a practicing Respiratory Care Practitioner still working in this field and have been for nearly 40 years. My wife Linda and I have two adopted children and we moved here to New Hampshire in 2003 after living and working in Saudi Arabia. I am a former Selectman here in Moultonboro and currently the Town and School District Moderator. I also chair the Recreation Advisory Board and the Master Plan Steering Committee.I am frugal by nature, moderate politically and strongly believe in the power of embracing good ideas regardless of where they came from and then working across political borders to get the job done.

2.       Why are you running for this office?
Carroll County is a great place to live. There are many changes and challenges ahead of us and we need leaders in Concord that will best represent the interests of its residents. 
 Enough already of the ideologic agendas and the never-ending stream of political catch phrases and mumbo jumbo.  Its time we become a little selfish and focus first and foremost on what is best for us and what we want on a very local and personal level.
My philosophy as a Respiratory Care Practitioner has always been to do what is best for my patients.  They always come first and that has always been job one.
As your State Representative, I don't care what any organization, special interest group or political party is selling, if it doesn’t meet the needs and improve the lives of the citizens of my district, I won’t vote for it or support it.  I will weigh my decisions primarily on the measure of what is best for my constituents.

3.       What are the biggest challenges facing Carroll County in the next 5-10 years and how in your elected capacity will you address them?
No corner of New Hampshire has escaped the opioid epidemic and that includes Carroll County. My intention will be to address the problem systemically and ake certain that the money spent to combat this problem is directed at tactics that have been proven to be effective. This has to be a bipartisan effort.
We can't avoid the fact that we are getting old as a county, second oldest in the state and we have to respond to the needs and challenges that come with it. Access to healthcare, fixed incomes, the ability to age in place, home health care, long-term care are part of a very long list of issues we know will need to be addressed, but have gotten lost in Concord. I will make this a priority if sent to Concord.
Our state university system has the highest in-state tuition in the country and students leave school with the highest student debt. Making college affordable at all levels will go a long way to keeping our young people here in New Hampshire, with good paying jobs and careers. 
Jobs, jobs, jobs. How do we create the right environment that will attract the right mix of business and employers to create jobs? A workforce needs to be able to afford to live reasonably close to their job. Business need a capable well-trained workforce. We have excellent public schools in our district and that does attract young families to our towns, but often they cannot find a home within their means an or a job that is within a reasonable commute. This is a regional issue and must be addressed as such. 

4.       If elected/re-elected what will be your top three goals?
Create an effective strategy to combat the opioid epidemic.  Protect our education tax dollars and our public schools.  Fight very hard to make certain that environmental regulations stay strong to protect our natural resources for the generations to come.

5.       What are the biggest obstacles to achieving these goals?
There are some out there that beat the drum of less government, less spending to the point that it has become nearly impossible to effectively run the state. The question to ask fellow citizens is this: Is frugality the only metric on which you measure a candidate? We have to find a middle ground and that involves a very big obstacle called compromise. If we do not elect leaders that are willing to at least hear what the other side has to say and not resort to reciting the same silly mantras over and over as arguments for their "side", the people of New Hampshire will not be well served. 

6.       Closing remarks
It would be my honor to serve our district in Concord. As I wrote at the beginning, I am frugal by nature, but shoud add, I am also not penny wise but pound foolish. For the record, I am opposed to any broad-based sales or income tax. 
We need to fix a number of problems in this state and it won't happen without leadership that is willing to work with any and all who have the interests of their constituents first and foremost and can leave the special interest priorities where they belong: outside of New Hampshire. 

Friday, September 7, 2018

Q&A: Carroll County Commissioner 1st District- Part 2

The following is from Commissioner Hounsell (r). He asked that this is published in response to recent letters to the editor.

Dear Conway Daily Sun
It is important to let the people know the truth
Mark Hounsell

Dear Editor,
Frank McCarthy really doesn’t know what he is talking about. Page 7 of our 2017 Audit states that we have $4,758,112.00 in total fund balance. So I’m not sure how much more proof he needs. 
Your headline suggest the County Register hasn't been getting her due until now.  She most certainly has!
Frank McCarthy claims the state law mandates that the audit be contained in the Annual Report. Again not true.  The audit can be a supplemental publication which it was and will be again this year.
Your first sentence claims the County Register is being paid more because of pressure.  Again, not true.  We ARE NOT paying the County Register more money.
In that this is the "political silly season" where some people believe it is OK to defamed and lie, the public should know that Lisa Scott has made financial contribution to Terry McCarthy's (Frank's wife) campaign.  Maybe that is why these untruths are being foisted on the voting public through your paper?  Why Representative McConkey numerous claims are so false is difficult to surmise. It is hard to keep track of them all.  At this point one should be very careful believing anything this man says.
Mark Hounsell

Q&A: Carroll County Commissioner 1st District

Commissioner Mark Hounsel(r) Conway is running for a second term as County Commissioner and is being opposed in the primary by Terry McCarthy (r) Conway. Commissioner David Babson (r) Ossipee  is running unopposed in the second District. 

The following is from Terry McCarthy. Commissioner Hounsel's responses will be published soon.

Thank you for allowing me this opportunity. I was born and raised in Conway, attended Kennett high school, class of 68.  I have been married to my husband Frank a retired Marine Corps Officer, for 38 years. We have three children, two of whom live here in Conway. Our oldest son is also a retired Marine who is now teaching Homeland Security in North Carolina. Our younger son is the assistant fire chief of the North Conway fire department and our daughter is employed by one of the most prestigious law firms in Conway. We are also blessed with two grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. My career in the hospitality industry spanned more than 40 years.  I worked my way up from waitress to food and beverage director and finally, chief operating officer at one of the most prestigious locations in the Valley. I have also been very active in volunteerism and community work. I have twice been elected to and continue to serve on the Conway Municipal Budget Committee, I have also been elected to the position of Supervisor of the Conway Check List. I have been seated on the Conway Health Committee, the board of directors of the Conway Chapter of Rotary International and the advisory board of the Vaughan Community Center Services, as well as the board of the Retired Senior Citizen’s Volunteer Program. (RSVP.) In 2016 I was recognized by then Governor Maggi Hassan as the recipient of the Joseph D. Vaughan award, given to an individual over the age of 60 who “demonstrate outstanding leadership or meritorious achievement as a volunteer on behalf of New Hampshire’s senior citizens.”
     Many have asked, “Why are You running for County Commissioner.” My primary goal relative to running for this office is to return to County Government the decorum, professionalism, and respect due such a critical entity of local government.  I totally and emphatically disagree with Commissioner Hounsell that the relationship between the County Delegation and the Board of County Commissioners is meant to be strained, meant to have tensions. To actually believe running any level of government in that manner, in my opinion, is wrong .  
     The biggest challenges facing Carroll County in the next 5 to 10 years are:
·         Having everyone at the county level to fully recognizing and understand the statutory authority and responsibilities of both the county’s Governing Body, (the board of commissioners) and its Legislative Body (the county delegation.) Once that is accomplished, and each body agrees on the legal parameters of their authority and responsibilities, I am convinced, the friction will cease, and great progress will be made. This can be accomplished as easily as producing a handbook of county government, put together with the mutual agreement of both entities and in strict accordance with the applicable RSAs. There are more than 200 RSAs in Title II relative to county government, and many more can be found in the Municipal budget act as well as the Municipal Finance act. Every RSA related to county finance, budgets, loans, bonds, tax anticipation notes, several types of audits, building repair in excess of $5,000.00, land usage of all kinds, the acceptance of grants, establishing contingency funds, purchase, sale or lease of land, salaries and benefits of elected officials and many more, gives the county delegation (legislative body) the statutory right of approval, as it is in municipalities where the legislative body of the municipality, “the people” have that same right of approval. That is a big part of the problem. The commissioners, very often, in contradiction of the RSAs balk at requesting delegation approval. Often, rather than request approval up front, or if approval is not given, the commissioners attempt end run after end run. Which, in my opinion, is the primary cause of the friction.  That must stop, state laws must be adhered to.
·         The changing trends in demographics within the state are also an omen for potential problems. NH has one of the oldest populations in the country which, in the near future, could potentially have an adverse effect on the county nursing home. Every year, the nursing home budget is a full 50% of the entire county budget. We must find a way to make the county nursing home, if not profitable, at least somewhat closer to paying for itself. Over the past 65 years or so, since the first nursing home was built, relative to operating cost imbalances, the nursing home has cost the taxpayers of the county more than 600 million dollars. We must work with the state and the association of county commissioners to see to it that an energetic study of demographic trends and the potential effects on the state and counties is undertaken, and remedies found.
If elected, my top three goals will be:
·         As I stated in the beginning, one of my priorities will be to bring civility, decorum and professionalism back to county government, much of which, at present, is sorely missing. All one need do is watch a few taped commissioner’s meetings shown weekly on several local area television stations courtesy of “Government oversite.”
·         County operations are made up of several distinct departments several of which are overseen and supervised by elected officials. Those departments led by elected officials, plus the House of Corrections are semi-autonomous, in that their duties and responsibilities are spelled out in separate RSAs rather than being dictated on a day to day basis by the commissioners. In fact the commissioners have little to do with those positions other than as it relates to administrative affairs, including pay and employee records keeping. Part of the problem, as I see it is, with a work force as large as we have at county, some three hundred employees, a “Human Resource” management position is an extremely significant position which has been vacant for far too long. If elected, I shall do all in my power to see that a Human Resource manager is brought aboard immediately. While I am at it, there is one other extremely important position I would like to touch on and that is the position of a Finance officer. The county has had a myriad of problems with finances, especially relative to timely paychecks for employees, timely preparedness for quarterly budget reviews, payments to elected officials and much more. Of all currently unfilled positions at county, I believe, hiring a highly qualified finance officer should be our primary goal. You can not properly run a county with a 31-million-dollar annual budget, especially in today’s world of micro-electronics with a handful of untrained individuals running the entire finance department.
·         A few years ago, the commissioners were overwhelmed to the point where the county was in dire straits. The delegation made an appropriation containing sufficient funds to hire a county” Administrative officer.”  However, it seems to me the commissioners now do very little and leave the daily overseeing of the county, which is after all, their primary responsibility, to the administrator. That must stop. In municipal law, town managers/administrators are forbidden to assume any duty vested in the governing body, by law. I shall do all in my power to make that law applicable to county government as well. As long as the commissioners are being paid, they should do the job they were elected to do.
Finally, I see no obstacle whatever, capable of stopping the achievement of the above stated goals. Especially with full cooperation from all sides, which I feel absolutely certain, if elected, will be readily and gladly forthcoming.

Thank You
Terry McCarthy

Candidate for County Commissioner