Press Releases

 

Monday
Jan172011

Sunacom.com - Odell predicts "evergreen law" repeal 

In his January 16, 2011 column on Sunacom.com, Senator Bob Odell writes:

"In 2008, the legislature created a law that made pay step increases and other monetary benefits continue even after a public employee bargaining agreement had lapsed and negotiators had reached an impasse. It is commonly referred to as the "evergreen law." Many of us feel this has placed a tremendous financial burden on local government and has increased costs passed along to property tax payers." "...the evergreen law makes voters reluctant to approve new contracts in many school districts, and perhaps in some towns, around the state."

"I am the sponsor of SB 1 [repealing the evergreen law]..." "I led off the testimony about the basic goals of the legislation. A couple of dozen others followed as the hearing went on for two and a half hours." "...everyone who wanted to have their voice heard, did so last week. When [SB 1] goes to the Senate floor shortly, the votes are there to pass..."

(http://sunacom.com/columnists/odell/odell_01-16-11.html)

Sunacom.com is the only non-commercial, community service, online source for local town reporting, news and information for the Lake Sunapee region of New Hampshire... since July, 2008.



Monday
Jan172011

Pawlenty argues against raising debt ceiling

On FOX News Sunday today, Gov. Pawlenty opposed raising the debt limit, and proposed authorizing the federal government to sequence thepaying of its bills, so we don't default on our debt obligations.

Watch that portion of the interview: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WzJetYzwYDA

###

Pawlenty Argues Against Raising Debt Ceiling

By Jonathan Weisman, Wall Street Journal, January 16, 2011 1:17 pm ET

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704511404576086002911806910.html?mod=googlenews_wsj

WASHINGTON—Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, a likely GOP White House hopeful, called on congressional Republicans to block an increase in the limit on federal borrowing, and he proposed legislation that he saidwould prevent a U.S. default on its loans.

In an interview with The Wall Street Journal Sunday and in an appearance on "Fox News Sunday," Mr. Pawlenty challenged even leaders in his own party, who have said Congress must increase the federal debt ceiling rather than risk a default that could send interest rates skyrocketing and the economy back into recession.

Mr. Pawlenty said Congress should pass legislation that would put interest and debt payments ahead of other federal spending and allow the federal government to pay its creditors as tax revenue flows in. With the surge of tax payments that come in between April and June, that would at least buy time to try to cut spending dramatically, he said.

"This debate about how we're going to restructure spending is inevitable. My view is, let's have it now," Mr. Pawlenty said in the Journal interview. "Let's call their bluff."

White House economists have said it would court economic disaster to use the debt ceiling, which is likely to be reached this spring, as a negotiating tool. Long-term interest rates remain at historically low levels, indicating no urgent need for dramatic austerity measures, they say, addingthat such cuts in the short run would jeopardize the economic recovery.

Lawrence Summers, President Barack Obama's former National Economic Council director, said Sunday the government needed more spending right now in key areas like infrastructure, not cuts.

"If at a time when we have unemployment approaching 20% in construction, and a 10-year-bond rate in the neighborhood of 3%, if that's not a time to invest in repairing our infrastructure, I can't imagine when there would be a better time," Mr. Summers said on CNN.

But Republicans seeking a national profile are challenging the administration more aggressively. On "Fox News Sunday," both Mr. Pawlenty and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie called on Congress to reject the debt ceiling increase.

"You cannot defy the laws of gravity, and this issue of Obama's approach versus the austerity approach is a very important debate," Mr. Pawlenty said in the Journal interview. "President Obama is just wrong."

Mr. Pawlenty also challenged Mr. Obama to explain why as a senator he opposed and voted against a debt-ceiling increase under President George W. Bush but now says that such a stand by Republicans is reckless.

In 2006, then-Sen. Obama said on the Senate floor: "The fact that we're here today to debate raising America's debt is a sign of leadership failure. Leadership means the buck stops here. Instead, Washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today onto the backs of our children and grandchildren. America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership. Americans deserve better. I therefore intend to oppose the effort to increase America's debt limit."

His positions then and now are "wildly inconsistent and reflect hypocrisy," said Mr. Pawlenty.

White House press secretary Robert Gibbs has said Mr. Obama took his stand when the outcome of the debt-ceiling debate wasn't in doubt and a U.S. debt default wasn't at risk.

Also on Sunday, lawmakers discussed the political tone in Washington in the wake of the shootings in Tucson, Ariz., that gravely injured Democratic Rep. Gabrielle Giffords.

On NBC's "Meet the Press," Sen. Charles Schumer (D., N.Y.), considered one of his party's fiercest partisans, said he would be sitting next to one of the Senate's most conservative members, Republican Tom Coburn of Oklahoma, at Mr. Obama's State of the Union speech Jan. 25. The rising number of lawmakers pledging to cross the aisle could change the appearance of the annual address, when by tradition, the parties sat apart and the party of the president cheered while the opposite party stared glumly.

"What we can't question is our president's love for his country," Mr. Coburn said.

Mr. Schumer also approached the issue of gun control gingerly following the Arizona shooting. He said he had written the Obama administration, asking that the military notify the Federal Bureau of Investigation when its recruiters reject an applicant for excessive drug use, as they did with Jared Lee Loughner, the accused Arizona shooter.

Such notification would then go into the computerized records that surface during an instant background check carried out when someone purchases a firearm.

Mr. Schumer expressed some hope that Congress could act on legislation to reinstate a limit on the size of gun magazines—sometimes known as clips—to limit the ability of a shooter to fire off as many rounds as the Arizona gunman did. But he said he wasn't optimistic. "Let's be honest. There hasn't been the votes in Congress for gun control," he said.

Mr. Coburn said the shooting of Ms. Giffords pointed to the need for better mental health care, not gun control.

"Let's fix the real problem," Mr. Coburn said. "Here's a mentally deranged person that had access to a gun who shouldn't have had access to a gun. How do we stop that?"

 



Sunday
Jan162011

Project Censored - Women and Gender News Stories Covered in the Past Twelve Months

Women and Gender News Stories Covered by Project Censored in the Past Twelve Months: Please Support This work at: http://www.projectcensored.org/support/



Women and Gender News Stories Covered by Project Censored in the Past Twelve Months: Please Support This work at: http://www.projectcensored.org/support/



Saturday
Jan152011

More Politically Alert Welcomes Power Couple

A month after featuring the power trio of House Speaker Will O’Brien, Majority Leader DJ Bettencourt, and Senate President Peter Bragdon, More Politically Alert has booked the state’s new power couple (my name for them, not theirs), Epsom Reps Carol and Dan McGuire, for the coming week.

            Dan and Carol are no strangers to Manchester TV23.  Long before they were elected State Representatives, they hosted the outstanding weekly show Your State House, one of the few shows I actually watched every week.

            Carol, now in her second term, is Chairman of the “powerful” Executive Departments and Administration (EDA) Committee, but Dan, a first term Rep, is arguably even more “powerful”.  Not only is he on the “powerful” Finance Committee, but he’s one of only ten House and Senate members on the “umber powerful” Fiscal Committee, and he’s co-chair of the “powerful” House Republican Alliance.

            Maybe my first question should be:  which of the two of you is more powerful?

            Just kidding!

            Actually, we’ll spend quite a bit of the show talking about something totally non-political.  Dan and Carol just returned from a trip to Australia and New Zealand, two places I’d really like to go (the 24 hour flight is a deterrent), and they promise to bring photos (slides, jpegs or whatever they’re called).

            New members have asked how they can view More Politically Alert, so here are the options.

            In the Manchester area, MPA airs on cable channel 23 (only cable since the five percent fee goes to funding the station) live Wednesday night, 9-10 p.m.  The show is then rebroadcast Thursday at 9 p.m., Sunday at noon, and Tuesday at 11 p.m. 

            You may watch it live outside Manchester by going to manchestertv.org and clicking on public access. 

            Usually within 24 hours, the show is available at vimeo.com/channels/mpa.

In fact, all the shows I’ve done since returning in September are now available.  Why not make a weekend of watching them all?!

            MPA was designed not to have guests, but we break format for such shows as the power trio and the power couple, and we had a year in review panel.

            Here’s a brief rundown of what to expect:

            Jan. 12—Topic:  what one piece of legislation would you file if you could.  A list of all my proposed pieces of legislation.  A redistricting primer.  Brunellegate week two.  Shame on those who would use public traumas for political purposes (Paul Krugman with Arizona for example).  Henry Clay’s duels.

            Jan. 5—11 predictions for 2011.  A review of the best and worst of 2010.

            Dec. 29—(the station was closed)….a half hour post-election show I did with Denis Goddard on Concord television.  And a half hour from my personal filming vault, this time from New Years 1990, a lesson on the rise and fall of the Berlin Wall as I stand in front of people chipping away at the wall (I had just read Peter Weyden’s 800 page book Wall:  The Inside Story of Divided Berlin).

            Dec. 22—Year in review panel—hardly fair and balanced unless you consider four people vying to be most libertarian a good mix (actually we had some disagreements, on Governor Lynch for example)--Ed Mosca, Rich Girard, and Denis Goddard

            Dec. 15—The highly acclaimed show with Speaker O’Brien, President Bragdon, and Majority Leader Bettencourt.  People are asking to see this again, so it may be rebroadcast if I’m too sick to do a show.  Yes, one of my New Years resolutions is to do a new show every week.

            Dec. 8—12 books which would make good Christmas presents.

            Dec. 1—Which people have had the greatest influence on you politically (my birthday show).  Mine are the late great radio talk show host Jerry Williams and Gene Burns who still does talk radio (in San Francisco I believe).  He once ran for President as a Libertarian…his influence on me was when he was the mid-day host of WRKO back in the 80s.

            Shows the week before and after the election (with Ed Mosca as guest the week after) were my personal favorites.

            Regular features on MPA (when I don’t have guests) are:  By The Numbers; Heard on the Grapevine; Thumbs Up Thumbs Down; Sad But True; Shame on You; Media Watch; The Reading Room; All About Steve (I’ve climbed all NH’s 4000 foot mountains but am still against LCHIP); A Blast from the Past (I’m going to revisit the day Democrats passed a tax on milk!)…there’s much more.  New features include Banned from MPA and What I Learned This Week on Finance, and once every six months or so we induct three deserving people into the MPA Hall of Fame (and of course have to match that with three in the MPA Hall of Shame).

It’s like going to a buffet table…take all you want, but eat all you take.



Saturday
Jan152011

NH DOC - Minimum Security Inmate Missing from Transitional Housing Unit

(Manchester, NH)  The New Hampshire Department of Corrections reports that a minimum security inmate is missing from the Calumet Transitional Housing Unit in Manchester after being given permission to leave the facility to seek employment. 

Matthew David Garcia, 21, of Nashua, signed out of the facility at approximately 2:00 p.m. on Friday January 14, 2011 to look for a job in the Hooksett Road area of Manchester.  He was required to return by 4:00 p.m. and failed to do so.  He was placed on walkaway status.

Inmate Garcia is described as a white male 5 feet 10 inches tall, 180 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes.  He has tattoos on his chest and right forearm.

Inmate Garcia was sentenced in Hillsborough Superior Court for first degree assault and was serving a 2 ½ - 7 year sentence.  He was also convicted in Hillsborough County Superior Court for second degree assault and was serving a concurrent 2 ½ - 7 year sentence.  He is eligible for parole on April 13, 2011 and was scheduled to have a hearing before the New Hampshire Adult Parole Board on February 10, 2011.

Anyone with information on this inmate’s whereabouts are urged to contact their local law enforcement agency or call the New Hampshire State Prison at 603-271-1801.