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November 25, 2020 top stories
Cottage Hospital
CEO to resign

WOODSVILLE—The leader of the local hospital for the last 10 years will step aside early next year.
A spokesperson for Cottage Hospital confirmed on Monday morning that Dr. Maria Ryan had resigned.
“Dr. Maria Ryan surprised the Board of Trustees and the hospital staff with her resignation, with the last day being Jan. 30, 2021,” wrote Dhaniele Duffy. “The outpouring of love and respect from the staff was immediate. Dr. Ryan has great business sense, but more importantly she was known as the People’s CEO. The letters from her staff are filled with stories about how Dr. Ryan positively touched their lives.”
Attempts to reach Ryan were unsuccessful.

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YANKEE PEDDLER—Well into the late 19th century, peddlers such as this one in Thomas Waterman Wood’s 1872 painting carried everything from tools to domestic necessities to rural homes. State laws tried to prevent unscrupulous transient swindlers from defrauding honest people on both farms and village streets.
Men face charges
in monoxide deaths

NORTH HAVERHILL—Three local men have been indicted for their roles in the January 2019 carbon monoxide deaths of a Lyman couple.
John and April Courtney died as a result of the poisoning. Last week, Richard Mallett Jr., 49, of Woodsville, Philip Poirier, 28, of Corinth, and Adam Vigent, 51, of North Haverhill—all three licensed gas fitters in New Hampshire—were indicted on negligent homicide charges.
Beginning in October 2018, the men installed a new heating system with a gas boiler at the Courtney residence. According to the indictments, Vigent came up with the installation and directed the system installers, Mallett and Poirier.

Legislature approves
detention center

NEWBURY—The Vermont Legislature’s Joint Fiscal Committee has approved a plan for the Becket Family of Services to operate a new state juvenile detention center in Newbury. The six-bed, residential treatment program for youth involved in the state criminal justice system would undergo a $3.1 million renovation to transform the former bed and breakfast into a secure facility.
The committee voted unanimously on Nov. 20 to approve the plan, as previously recommended by the Joint Legislative Justice Oversight Committee and the Joint Legislative Child Protection Oversight Committee. The Becket-run site would replace the Woodside Juvenile Rehabilitation Center in Essex, which closed in October.
Vermont Department of Children and Families and the Vermont Agency of Human Services have tentatively set October 2021 as an opening date for the new facility. They have predicted annual operating and staffing costs of $3.9 million, below the $5.9 it cost to operate Woodside and the $5.5 million it would cost to run a new facility.

NH has
mask mandate

New Hampshire imposed a statewide mask mandate last week after “substantial community transmission” of COVID-19 was found in all 10 of the state’s counties.
Under the mandate, all New Hampshire residents over the age of 5 will have to wear masks or cloth face coverings over their noses and mouths when they are within indoor or outdoor public spaces and cannot maintain a physical distance of at least 6 feet. The order defines “public spaces” as any public or private spaces generally open to the public from lobbies and waiting areas to restaurants and retail businesses to parks and patios.
The mandate took effect on Nov. 20 and will remain in place until Jan. 15 under the current executive order from Gov. Chris Sununu.
The mandate, announced on Nov. 19, came the same day the state said it had 529 news cases of COVID-19 shattering the previous highs. The following day, there were 527 new cases with 492 coming on Saturday and 322 coming on Sunday.

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