Local & Regional Briefs for Saturday, June 14, 2014

Gasoline Spill in WRJ Closes Station Temporarily

White River Junction — The gas pumps at the Station Market Mobil gas station were closed temporarily Friday after roughly 25 gallons of gasoline were spilled from an RV camper, according to a news release from the Hartford Fire Department.

Hartford fire officials responded to the scene around 12:40 p.m. and conducted atmospheric monitoring of the gas station and the White River, according to the release.

Most of the spilled fuel dispersed into the gas station’s storm drains with catch basins designed for such spills, and absorbent materials were used to filter storm water downstream from the spill to help collect any fuel that made it through the containment area.

Hartford units consulted with the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources and the state’s hazardous response team. Fire officials stayed on scene until about 3:15 p.m., when a private hazard abatement company arrived. The pumps were expected to reopen by the end of the day.

Hartford Fire Lt. Shawn Hannux said the spill was caused by a hole in part of the recreational vehicle’s mechanism. The owner of the RV immediately reported it to the station clerk and no injuries were reported.

Children’s Hospital at Dartmouth Seeks Volunteers for Balloon Fest

Quechee — Volunteers are needed to staff a booth collecting toys and other items for Children’s Hospital at Dartmouth this weekend during the Quechee Hot Air Balloon, Craft and Music Festival.

Donations of new books, crafts, games and toys will be accepted at the booth throughout the festival, which opens today and runs through Sunday. Children are invited to visit the booth and make cards and bookmarks for CHaD patients.

To sign up for a two-hour shift, go to goo.gl/zg8Xo6. For more information, email maggie.flaherty33@gmail.com, or call 770-634-8175.

Man Injured in Cornish Accident

Cornish — A male motorist was taken to Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center Friday evening after he lost control of his car, struck a telephone pole and flipped over, authorities said.

The driver lost control of his Toyota sedan on East Road, and the vehicle “started to slide sideways on wet grass, hit a telephone pole and flipped over,” said Cornish Fire Chief Scott Reuthe.

The driver, who was the lone occupant, “had to be extricated” from the car around 6:30 p.m., said Reuthe. He did not have the driver’s name, but said he appeared to be about 50 years old. The driver was “coherent” but in pain after the accident, and was taken by ambulance to DHMC. Cornish police are investigating.

Frisbie Memorial Hospital Gets 2 Provider Network Insurers

Rochester, n.h. (Fosters) — Despite Frisbie Memorial Hospital’s exclusion from the provider network offered through the Affordable Care Act (ACA) by Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield, the hospital will be in a better position next year.

Early this month, Frisbie signed an agreement with Minuteman Health, a Massachusetts-based health insurance carrier that will offer plans in New Hampshire starting in January 2015. Minuteman’s plans sold under the ACA, on the health insurance marketplace, will also include Frisbie and its affiliated doctors.

Alvin Felgar, the CEO of Frisbie, previously announced that Harvard Pilgrim Health Care, which will also join the health insurance marketplace in 2015, will include Frisbie in its provider network.

This year, Anthem is the only carrier that signed up to participate in the health insurance marketplace available through the ACA, also known as Obamacare. Because Frisbie was excluded from Anthem’s new network, patients signing up for insurance through the marketplace would not be covered at Frisbie or the other 10 hospitals in the state not included in the network.

But next year, New Hampshire residents buying plans through the ACA will have the option to have care covered at Frisbie, as long as they choose plans through Minuteman or Harvard Pilgrim.

Hassan Vetoes Bill Shielding Lottery Winners’ Name

Concord (ap) — Gov. Maggie Hassan has vetoed a bill that would have kept the names of lottery winners from being released.

Hassan said Friday the need to be transparent in how lottery money is handed out trumps the need for privacy of winners. She says the lottery is successful because of that openness.

She called the bill well-intentioned.

State Rep. Herbert Richardson, Lancaster Republican, was the measure’s primary sponsor and said that he’ll try to override the veto. Richardson says he brought the measure because jackpot winners whose names were released said they felt harassed.

He also said keeping the names private would promote out of state sales if people knew a win wouldn’t be publicized.

If the override fails, he says he’ll bring the measure back next year.

Shumlin: Protect Medical Marijuana Sites

Montpelier (ap) — Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin says he supports an effort in Congress to block the federal government from cracking down on state-sanctioned medical marijuana dispensaries.

Dispensaries in the states that allow the use of medical marijuana have been under the threat of being closed down by the federal Drug Enforcement Agency because they are in violation of federal drug laws.

Shumlin says he supports a move by a coalition of the most liberal and the most conservative members of the U.S. House to prohibit the Drug Enforcement Administration from interfering with state sanctioned medical marijuana dispensaries.

Shumlin says he thinks the congressional effort “adds more voices to the common sense approach to marijuana policy.”

Man with COPSLIE Plate Running for City Clerk

Rochester, n.h. (ap) — A New Hampshire man who won a court case to use a vanity plate reading “COPSLIE” to protest what he calls government corruption is running for state representative.

David Montenegro, who in 2012 legally changed his name to “human,” has filed with the office of the city clerk in Rochester a declaration of candidacy for New Hampshire’s 400-member House.

He’ll be on the Sept. 9 primary ballot — as “human” — as a Democrat for District 22 in Rochester, challenging Democratic Rep. Rose Marie Rogers.

The state Supreme Court ruled in his favor in May that “COPSLIE” is protected as free speech.