Steven J Connolly

Friday
May222015

MBTA Restructuring And New Hampshire. 

During the past couple of days the Boston Globe has been running some interesting stories about the beleaguered Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) and the efforts, which I'm believing are genuine, by the elected officials in the Commonwealth to bring about some positive needed management and change to the MBTA.  

It will be very difficult to do. And more difficult with what they've proposed. First, there leadership of the MBTA has been shuffled and changed as one would expect with this level of problems. But the second and more troublesome is the creation of "an oversight committee."over the newly restructured leadership of the MBTA. The oversight committee, as it was reported, is appointed by elected officials and would have more authority than the "day to day" leadership. I'm thinking that this is the complete definition of: "micromangement" at a time when it "should be left alone." Some serious restructuring and leadership is needed here.

So how does this impact New Hampshire?The MBTA Needs To Be Restructured.

This is the same MBTA that the New Hampshire Rail Transit Authority is talking about bringing up here to New Hampshire. This is a mistake and a big one.

Fortunately the NH state senate has taken a quality action in removing $4.0 million dollars from the state budget for "planning and engineering" work for the NH Rail Transit Authority.

New Hampshire does not need the MBTA and it's well established corruption and problems here in this state.

Friday
May222015

Bad Deals For New Hampshire. 

This is a picture that I took recently in Northumberland (Groveton) of the demolished Groveton Paper Mill that was constructed in the late 1890s.

Right now I'm reading that about the U.S. Senate action(s) on the "fast track" trade legislation that, at least to me, looks like it benefits countries like Vietnam and Malasia which have a Gross Domestic Product of about .03% of the economy of the United States.

Guess the New Hampshire Congressional Delegation is supporting this trade legislation.

Wonder if they've been to Groveton recently. Not alot of votes there.The New Hampshire Congressional Delegation Is Reportedly Supporting "Fast Track" Trade Legislation.

 

 

 

 

 

Friday
May222015

More Balsam's Bailout And Fluff. 

I'm going to term this a fluff session but Gov. Maggie Hassan signed into law SB 30.

Reading the press release now. It's not very innovative. "This bipartisan measure is also an important step forward for advancing the Balsams redevelopment project, which is a bold vision for the revitalization of this historic resort with great potential to create jobs, boost the North County's economy and have a ripple effect for businesses across the state."

You'd think that if Gov. Hassan were truly interested in making a statement like this the signing session would be filled with parties that "would actually benefit" from the legislation.

It wasn't.Should Be Interesting To See What Happens Next.

Instead it was filled with legislators, DRED Commissioner Rose and parties from the Balsam's.

Gov. Hassan does have one thing right. This legislation will have a "ripple effect" especially for other resorts that are impacted by this proposed state loan guarantee that is surrounded by substantial risk and uncertainty.

It's going to be interesting to see what happens next. And especially how it's framed.

Friday
May222015

Support SB 88

The news media is reporting on the "rejection of $4 million dollars for the NH Rail Transit Authority."for their continuing money fed proposal to bring passenger rail up to Concord. This is a reported effort by Senators Boutin and Daniels and I really hope that it sticks.

And if it does stick there is indeed hope....

I've located a piece of legislation that is moving forward that has great potential for New Hampshire. Senate Bill 88 has passed the senate and is now in the house. This is study legislation that considers intermodal transportation and the use of "public private partnerships." to increase this area of transportation in the granite state.New Hampshire Lacks Intermodal Capability. This Is Lost Opportunity And Jobs.

This is something that is sorely needed statewide. Intermodal is primarily concerned with freight movement whether this is highway, rail, sea and air. Right now it's the only growth area in the transportation sector and when it's done correctly, leads to substantial taxbase and jobs.

But unfortunately, it isn't being done in New Hampshire. This is why Senate Bill 88 is needed.

During the last reset of the NH State Rail Plan sponsored by NH DOT I pushed the project consultant(s) to include a subsection and analysis of "intermodal capabilities" in New Hampshire. And they did exactly this. New Hampshire has no intermodal capabilities instead, a potential shipper/receiver has to use facilities in Ayer, Mass, Auburn, Maine or possibly Worcester, Mass. The state rail plan looked at this.

I've said it before New Hampshire needs intermodal capability here. This would lead to lower cost(s) and ultimately jobs and taxbase for the entire state. Hopefully Senate Bill 88 will pass.

Sunday
May172015

Not Enough Was Done. 

Several weeks ago I heard an interesting quote that after I'd spent some time considering now believe it makes very good sense.

Someone was taking about Sen. Lou Dellasandro and his immense, substantive efforts at passage of expanded casino gaming in New Hampshire. His efforts are falling short but the political leadership was certainly there. In any case it what I've heard goes like this:

"If Sen. Dellasandro had worked as hard at general economic development and creating jobs as he did for the casinos the results here would have been immense."

I believe this.Demolition of Groveton Mill 2015.

In this case experience does matter and the senator does have enough experience to get things done. Some real things done. Recently I was up in Northumberland (Groveton) watching demolition crews level the remaining infrastructure of the 116 year old paper mill. I still believe this industry and its jobs could have been saved, but for whatever reason(s), including politics it was allowed to die.

Instead the emphasis is to place the hopes and dreams of New Hampshire on the idea of casinos and state loan guarantees for luxury resort developments whose primary market is so far outside of New Hampshire, it will be difficult to envision that it is anything more than a state financed island.

Imagine how much better New Hampshire would be if we were creating things, building things and exporting things.

The world would need us instead of us needing them.