Fire displaces two families

WOODSVILLE—Survivors narrowly escaped a devastating house fire last week in Woodsville.
Area fire departments responded to 56 South Court Street across from Community Field on Jan. 5 at 9:42 p.m.

Rivendell budget could climb

WEST FAIRLEE—Rivendell board members looked at the first draft of the 2023-24 budget at their Jan. 3 meeting. The proposed increase was nearly $1 million over the current year.

Haverhill in tax bill quandary

WOODSVILLE—Haverhill cannot send out its tax bills, because the New Hampshire Department of Revenue Authority will not certify the tax rate.
Last month, town officials received a letter from the DRA notifying them that the agency will not set the tax rate due to uncertainty resulting from a case before the New Hampshire Supreme Court. In that case, Woodsville Precinct appealed the DRA’s invalidation of two warrant articles approved at town meeting in 2022.

Haverhill Middle School expansion ruled out

WOODSVILLE—A long-mooted plan to build an addition at Haverhill Cooperative Middle School to accommodate the district’s elementary school students has been ruled out.
Dick Guy, a former school board chair and current member of the facilities committee, said the panel received a $40 million estimate from an architect for the project at its meeting last week.“The committee is not going to consider it any further,” he told the Haverhill School Board on Jan. 9.
Instead, the committee will develop a plan for repairs and refurbishments at Woodsville Elementary School, although that project is still a long way off.

Outage, cold snap spurred ingenuity

CORINTH—The severe wind and rainfall on Dec. 23 caused plenty of discomfort for area residents, some of whom endured power outages for close to a week.
The devastation left many in Orange County without power over the Christmas holiday and beyond, as some had to find some creative solutions to cook and keep pets alive.

Orford budget committee members resign in protest

ORFORD—After a disagreement with the town’s selectboard, the majority of the Orford Budget Advisory Committee resigned last month.
The selectboard voted on Dec. 28 to accept the resignations of four of the seven members of the budget advisory board.
In separate letters, the departing committee members cited different reasons for their resignations, but there was a common thread. All cited frustrations that their recommendations and diligence were being ignored by the selectboard.

Filmmaker eyes past for new movie

THETFORD—As the winter sun poured through the windows, filmmaker Malcolm Silver-Van Meter stood shrouded by light as he introduced the characters of his latest production.
“Where I come from is hugely important to me,” he said. Every gesture was nuanced by an almost holy reverence.
“The films that I make are personal.”

Court sets March filing deadline

NEWBURY—Attorneys in the lawsuit between Newbury and the state over a proposed juvenile detention center on Stevens Place have until March to file briefs with the Vermont Supreme Court.

Storm blows roofs off, major power outages

More than 120,000 customers in New Hampshire and Vermont were left without power in the immediate aftermath of a windstorm that swept through ahead of Christmas weekend. At least some could remain without power until the end of this week.
Howling winds arrived in the early morning hours of Dec. 23 as snow transitioned to rain in many locations. Wind gusts reached 70 mph in Burlington, according to the National Weather Service.

Christmas fire destroys Groton home

GROTON—An unoccupied home was destroyed by a two-alarm fire on Christmas morning in Groton.
Groton Fire Chief Wade Johnson Sr. said firefighters were dispatched to the blaze on North County Road at about 7:20 a.m. on Sunday for smoke coming from the tin roof and building.