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New Nonprofit ‘Friends of New Hampshire Drug Courts’ to Hold Inaugural Event Tonight; Lebanon Names Interim City Manager; and More News


Friday, May 20, 2016
New Nonprofit to Hold Inaugural Event Tonight

Manchester — The Friends of New Hampshire Drug Courts, a new nonprofit established to support all county drug court programs in the state, will hold a kickoff event tonight in Manchester.

Friends President Ed Rajsteter, of North Haverhill, said the event will feature Gov. Maggie Hassan, U.S. Sens. Kelly Ayotte and Jeanne Shaheen, and U.S. Reps. Frank Guinta and Annie Kuster, who will be inducted as honorary members of the nonprofit.

The nonprofit will work in connection with the state’s county drug court programs. One of its functions is to help raise money to support the drug courts.

Grafton County residents started the Friends of Grafton County Drug Court in 2009 and raised more than $50,000 in six years, Rajsteter said. Instead of starting a “Friends” program in each county, a New Hampshire chief justice came up with the idea to create one statewide group, he said.

There currently are six drug courts in New Hampshire, including Grafton, Belknap-Laconia, Cheshire, Hillsborough-South, Rockingham and Strafford.

The event will be held from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the law offices of Devine Millimet on Amherst Street in Manchester.

Meanwhile, the state Senate on Thursday passed a bill that creates a statewide drug offender grant progam that will pave the way for all counties to set up drug court programs.

“Establishing a statewide drug court program is a critical step forward in our comprehensive approach to combat the heroin and opioid crisis,” Hassan said in a Thursday news release, lauding state legislators on passing the bipartisan bill. “Existing drug courts have been successful in reducing crime, saving money and helping people return to their communities as contributing members of society.”

The bill is on its way to the governor’s desk.

Lebanon Names Interim City Manager

Lebanon — City Council named Acting City Manager Paula Maville to the post of interim city manager on Wednesday night, citing the need to continue the current staff structure through this year’s budget season.

“Acting City Manager Maville has the knowledge and experience to shepherd the (budget) process to a successful completion, and the council welcomes the opportunity to continue to work with her on these important tasks,” City councilors wrote in a news release.

Maville has worked for the city for 30 years, and was named deputy city manager three years ago. She took over the role as city manager after former manager Dennis Luttrell was fired in March.

The title change takes effect on June 20.

Norwich Moves Forward In Interim Town Manager Selection

Norwich — The Selectboard appears to be nearing selection of an interim town manager.

The Selectboard came out of executive session Thursday and voted, 5-0, “to retain an attorney to draft a contract for an interim town manager,” Selectboard Chairwoman Linda Cook said.

Cook declined to say if there is a specific candidate in hand, but said, “We will be continuing the process on May 25 at our next regular Selectboard meeting.”

Planning and Zoning Director Phil Dechert has been serving as a temporary interim manager since veteran Town Manager Neil Fulton resigned in February.

— Staff reports