Welcome to The News Cafe, a virtual meeting place where members can share their thoughts and questions about the news of the day — or any topic — and where we select a subject for in-depth analysis. All this will be compiled into bulletins, available to subscribers.

So fill your cup with your favorite drink, pull up a chair, and join us at The News Cafe. Give us your thoughts through the online form here, or Tweet your message to to us @The_News_Cafe.

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Free Introductory Bulletins

Bulletin 2: Even before Indeck Energy announced the closing of its Alexandria biomass plant, Shaun Lagueux was worried about the challenges facing the forest industry. Pulpwood and chip prices have been dropping, and without the ability to get rid of that low-grade wood.

Bulletin 1: Towns in Grafton County District 9 are considering whether to hold a special election to fill the unexpired term of Jeff Shackett, R-Bridgewater, who resigned 30 days after being sworn in for his fourth term in the New Hampshire House of Representatives.

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The Buzz

Skip Reilly here, former State Representative Grafton County, District 9. I endorse the optimum candidate to keep a fiscally prudent voice for us in Concord. Voters in Alexandria, Ashland, Bridgewater, Bristol and Grafton should invest time Tuesday, July 18, to cast a vote for Vincent Paul Migliore — with the strongest resume and knowledge on issues facing us.

There are other good candidates, but this is about the next regular election come 2018 when this should have been held. Mr. Migliore supported waiting and saving this unbudgeted expense to every town — evidence of his fiscal prudence. I've seen it first-hand, having worked with him for years while he serves the School Board of 10 years, and myself on the Budget Committee. I attest to his fairness when spending taxpayer dollars. He supports Second Amendment and is an NRA member. With extensive inside knowledge of NH education and how decisions are made in the legislature, he's best. Politically astutue and har working for his constituents, he will continue to now that he's sold his business run with his wife of 39 years in Bristol. He is able to and shall command respect of leadership n Concord our citizens here deserve. He will work full0tiem on our behalf and I urge a vote for the one candidate who can win, and will work to do so in the General Eelction, then again in November 2018 — which is really what this contest is all about.

"Skip" Reilly

Route 104

Alexandria NH 03222

On Economic Development: LOWER PROPERTY TAXES. WHY?

Where would you locate your new home or business? The central NH region is a tourist-based economy and as such becomes more seasonally populated than not. That makes for a need to sacrifice to those who accept this way of life we call Central New Hampshire . . . or “The Lakes Region”. The demographics of our population continue to edge upward in average age, with fewer and fewer young people staying in NH (statewide) when they graduate from either high school or college. Why is that? It’s primarily due to cost of workforce housing. Others assume it has to do with the lack of jobs – wrong. Perhaps the lack of a *variety* of jobs, but not just jobs, per se. Look around you – there are plenty of “NOW HIRING” signs in all sorts of businesses. Freudenberg-NOK, Bristol’s largest employer (the school district is 2nd) is eager to attract professional engineering talent and a variety of professional talent in many other areas of specialized expertise. The major contributing factor to the problem that is exacerbated by many other small ones is the fundamental cost of housing. The reason our school population continues to decline is because parents of school-age children are finding they can give themselves a raise by making the same money in a greater variety of professions in the South and Midwest by reducing their cost of housing! So, they move. Were we to find a way to lower the tax property burden on home owners, it would attract more residential buyers to the area to take advantage of that phenomenon, produce the need for more goods and services, increase the demand for businesses to support a growing economy, and broaden the tax base. This results in a smoothening of the tax burden amongst a larger local population – stabilizing the student population. And by the way, this action, it should be noted by all, would *also* increase the value of current property owners! There *is* a solution to this problem, but it will take full-time leadership and commitment to bring it about. I have a strategic plan and it requires far more time and space than we have in this medium to present and explain. But after 10 years of ongoing public service, I’d like the chance to voice it, and to present it. It deserves both a hearing as well as a debate.

Vincent Paul Migliore

Bridgewater

There are 536 residents in Grafton County's 9th district that rely on the Medicaid expansion. Though that is a number, the people behind that number are real, and I know many of them. They're our friends, our neighbors, and those we hold dear. They must be protected, and that, among other issues, is what I hope to do in Concord as a State Representative.

My name is Josh Adjutant, I'm a Democratic candidate for the HD9 seat, and I'm asking for your vote in the July 18th primary so we can have representation tailored to our community, and not the wishes of the swarm of donors about to embrace the GOP nominee. So that we can have representation based on real issues like Northern Pass, Medicare, Taxes, and Education, and not another Representative to go to Concord and do the political classes bidding.

The Newfound region is my home and has been for the last 22 years. I care deeply about the friends I've made so far on the campaign trail and the ones I make every day talking to voters. We are running a grassroots, issues oriented campaign because I believe that's the only way you can truly represent your constituency. You have to get out to talk to folks, and have conversations where you might disagree, not just wait for them to come and talk to you, only to be unresponsive.

The Republican establishment has been repeating the same tone deaf messaging about your seat, saying "we will hold the seat Republican". Not "we will elect someone to work for (insert issue here), but just "we will spend our donors money just to get a red shirt instead of a blue shirt in Concord".

Partisan politics don't matter to me. You do. The kids I mentored at the Community Center should have a thriving community to live in if they chose to stay here and contribute to our economy. The seniors who have played fair for 70 years and now face Medicare cuts because irresponsible legislators got voted in and threw them right under the bus should be able to have the retirement they spent their entire lives paying for through strong social security. The residents who have high prescription drug costs need someone ready to draft legislation making it legal for New Hampshire to negotiate with drug companies over prices, and open the market to Canadian drugs, thus using the free market to drive down the costs.

The kids in the Newfound School District who I stood up for as an active School Board member (2011-2012), who are going to get a worse education than I got because of under funding shouldn’t get a worse shake than their parents had. That's the opposite of progress. Our children must be the focus of our education policy. It's irresponsible to say the education of our kids is "none of my business", as another candidate in this race has.

The poorer residents who get taxed to death with painfully high property taxes while wealthy legislators write themselves checks from the kitty in the form of tax cuts for the top 3 percent (See Senate Budget 2017), need relief from someone in their shoes, who has never been considered wealthy.

Only July 18th, I'm asking you to go to your local polling place, get a Democratic ballot, and write in Joshua Adjutant, not as a vote for me, but as a vote for us. A vote for our local community and economy.

A vote for the future.

Thank you.

Josh Adjutant

Bristol

Whuz the Buzz at

The News Café?

Background: The News Cafe traces its roots to the late 1990s when Tom Caldwell published The Telegram in Franklin NH. There was a brick patio in front of the office, and he had a vision of setting up  an assortment of newspapers for people to peruse while enjoying coffee and pastries that would be provided by local restaurants on a rotating basis. Those patrons who were willing to participate would discuss the day's news on video, to be shown on public access television and published in an expanded format in The Telegram. (This was at the same time he was developing the idea for the Liberty Independent Media Project, which would present stories in various formats, for print, web, and cable.)

The concept was never implemented at the time, but he brought it up again after moving on to The Citizen of Laconia NH. Management never bought into the concept of offering competitors' papers as well as their own, so the idea was dropped again. He would offer the suggestion one more time, at the New Hampshire Union Leader and Sunday News, but again it didn't gain traction.

By this time, the trend was moving away from getting information from a printed newspaper and toward online news sources, making the physical newsstand unnecessary. And with email and social media, the comments could be gathered on the go ... so why not make The News Cafe a virtual gathering-place for those with computers, tablets, and smartphones?

And so, here we are — and welcome.

Many of these stories could just as easily be published in traditional media, except that newspapers struggling to adapt and survive are limiting their content to bring costs in line with revenues. It may be a self-defeating strategy, but it means that there are stories that are not being told, and that is what we aim to do here. And that is why we are charging a modest subscription fee as compensation for the time it takes to put all this together.  It is a continuing work in progress, and will be shaped by those who "drop in" for a visit.

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