Tag Archives: bond

Would Appear That State Has Yet To Approve The New Hampshire (N.H.) Property Tax Rates For 2013 – 2014.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.

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by
Anura Guruge


Related posts:
1/ New Hampshire 2012 – 2013 Property Tax Rates Spreadsheet
>> — Nov. 26, 2012.
2/ Alton, NH Property Tax Rate: 23rd Lowest In State! — Nov. 26, 2012.
++++ Search on ‘tax’ for other posts >>>>


2013 - 2014 tab. The second entry, the spreadsheet, is NOT linked to a file! Click to access this page.

2013 – 2014 tab. The second entry, the spreadsheet, is NOT linked to a file! Click to access this page.


What the 2012 - 2013 tab looks like with the PDF and the accessible spreadsheet. Click to access page.

What the 2012 – 2013 tab looks like with the PDF and the accessible spreadsheet. Click to access page.


I had been led to believe in late June, by a very knowledgeable contact who works at the Alton Town Office that the State, i.e., New Hampshire, will approve the rates by the 3rd week in August. To emphasize his point he even showed me target week on his wall calendar. Well August is well and truly history. So we are at least a week late — I think. It is possible that the rates are done and that it is just a delay in posting them.

I will keep an eye. I want to know the new rates — of course; given that I am a bona fide tax payer.

Any delays in Concord could delay the sending out of the tax bills — though I suspect they will still demand payment by December 1, 2013.

So, just a heads up.

We in Alton are expecting a DECREASE in our rates now that the infamous bond to build the Prospect Mountain High School has expired. Lets see. I am not convinced that our rates will go down. It would be nice if it does.

Alton, N. H. Property Taxes Due (For Those That Pay It) On July 1, 2013. No Change In Rates As Is Always The Convoluted Case.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.

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Anura Guruge


Related posts:
++++ Do a SEARCH on ‘Tax’ from
Sidebar search trench for other related posts >>>>>


If you pay Alton property taxes and do so directly as opposed to having it paid from escrow by a mortgage company, the tax bill is due on July 1, 2013 — or you face a 12% (per year) interest charge (though I know that the Tax Collector kindly enough allows a few days leeway on this, assuming of course that you actually believe in paying Alton property taxes).

Those of you who thought that you will see a drop in your tax bill now that the $18 million Alton Central School renovation bond was quite rightly rejected by the voters might be in for a surprise. This ‘July’ tax bill is still based on the old, i.e., 2012-2013, rate. So it is by default and definition 1/2 of the December 2012 bill (even if you in December paid more than 1/2 of it, which you would have).

This is yet another arcaneness (and possibly even outright stupidity) in the way NH Property Taxes are worked out — some of it has to do with when the State approves its budget in the Summer etc.

Hopefully, if the State & Belknap County does not whack us with a huge tax increase we should see the Alton rate go down ‘slightly’ since the $0.68 per $1,000 assessed value that we had been paying for the Prospect Mountain School bond was retired in December 2012. Then what we paid in July gets applied against it — which in theory could lead to a lower tax bill in December, though to be honest I am not counting on that.

This from the Alton Town Tax Collector explains, quite well, the very confusing and convoluted way that our tax bills are calculated and collected.


Right click to ENLARGE this image or click on the link below to access the original, without my emphasis, at the Alton Town's (very slow) website.

Right click and follow options there to ENLARGE this image or just click on it to go the original, without my emphasis, at the Alton Town’s (very slow) website.

Click here to access original at ‘alton.nh.gov’ website.


Recrimination Continues Post Alton Central School (ACS) Renovation Bond Vote In March 2013.

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Anura Guruge


≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ SEARCH ‘ACS’ or ‘bond’ for other posts —>>> (side bar)


This sign was on display at Monday’s, May 13, 2013, School Board meeting. The School Board, understandably, was not in the mood to debate it in anger. So the discontentment, disenchantment and prevailing spirit of conflict endures.

Click to ENLARGE.

Click to ENLARGE.


‘The Baysider’, Purportedly Alton’s Newspaper Stays Silent On Key Board Of Health & Alton Central School (ACS) Board ‘Special’ Meeting.

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 ..by Anura Guruge


Related Posts:
>> 
Alton, NH: Board Of Health & Alton Central School (ACS) Board
>> ‘Special’ Meeting — Apr. 30, 2013.
>>
Alton School Board Committee Assignments
>>Apr. 28, 2013.

>> 
Alton Elected Town Officials: To Disclose Or Not To Disclose,
>> That IS THE Question? — Apr. 14, 2013.

++++ Check Category ‘Alton’ in sidebar dropdown for other posts >>>>


BaysiderCoveringAlton

It says ‘covering Alton’ on the banner, but I guess that is just an indication of who should pay to advertise with them.


This Monday’s joint Alton (Selectmen/) Board of Health & Alton Central (ACS) School Board meeting to discuss healthy and safety related issues at ACS that had been aired during the contentious $18M bond fiasco was probably the most germane and interesting ACS-related meeting held this year — barring the ‘that was more fun than your typical three ring circus’ deliberative session on February 3.

So how come today’s ‘The Baysider’, purportedly Alton’s newspaper has no mention, at all, about this pivotal meeting. It isn’t as if they didn’t have the time. Their deadline is Tuesday and they have routinely covered other School Board meetings that were held on a Monday — that very week, in the Thursday edition.

I noticed that Tim Croes, the regular reporter, did not appear to be present. But, I know that they sometimes use other stringers, such as a lady called ‘Elizabeth‘ who tends to do a bangup job. So, when I got back, that very night, I fired off an e-mail to my friend Josh Spaulding, the  bestriding editor of ‘The Baysider’, asking him who covered that meeting. I got a response fairly soon (as is typically the case with Josh). He did not know! He does not keep track of Alton meetings. Tim is supposed to decide.

Hhhmmmm.

So what is the deal here? I have one and ONLY ONE concern. Was this political? By conveniently ignoring the coverage of this meeting (for at least a week), ‘The Baysider’ is letting the news go cold and as such demoting the issue.

The problem here is that I know various people who, rightly or wrongly, charge ‘The Baysider’ as being the OFFICIAL ACS newspaper.

It has now come to light that Tim Croes has been employed by ACS as a substitute teacher this 2012-2013 school year.
Tim nor ‘The Baysider’ disclosed this conflict of interest.
Read this post of May 3, 2013.

At this meeting the ACS School Board was asked a lot of pointed questions. By not covering the meeting many of the tax payers in Alton are being deprived of a chance to hear about what took place. All I want to know is is that but a coincidence. Yes, Tim, before he got his ‘get out of jail card’ that permitted him to attend Brewster, was an ACS alumni. So did ‘they’ lean on him not to cover the meeting? I do not know. But, this bothers me.

I have been particularly busy this week, since coming back from vacation, trying to publish yet another book. I just managed to get that done a few minutes ago. So, I now have a few ‘minutes’ breathing space before I start on another new book tomorrow. I had asked Deanna to find me the video of Monday’s meeting. I want to do at least one post on the “he said“, “no he didn’t“, “he definitely said ‘possibly’“, “no he didn’t“, aspect of the meeting, which dominated much of the first part of the proceedings, by juxtapositioning the questions from the Health Board and the answers from the School Board with the relevant clips from the deliberative session. At least as of Tuesday night Deanna couldn’t find the video from Monday. I will get to that.

If ‘The Baysider’ is not going to cover these meetings I will have to see what I can do. I am too old to start getting minutes. I did that 30 years ago. Maybe I could find somebody who will help out. But it irks me that the purported local paper does not feel that it is their job to cover such meetings. Funnily enough this is the SECOND instance, just this year, when ‘The Baysider’ just happened to forget to cover a crucial School Board meeting happening. Recall we had to hear about the Steve Miller ‘brandishing‘ incident from WMUR because ‘The Baysider’ waited until the following week to mention it.

Hhhmmmm.

‘The Baysider’, Purportedly Alton’s Newspaper Stays Silent On Key Board Of Health & Alton Central School (ACS) Board ‘Special’ Meeting.

Dec2013x125

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 ..by Anura Guruge


Related Posts:
>> 
Alton, NH: Board Of Health & Alton Central School (ACS) Board
>> ‘Special’ Meeting — Apr. 30, 2013.
>>
Alton School Board Committee Assignments
>>Apr. 28, 2013.

>> 
Alton Elected Town Officials: To Disclose Or Not To Disclose,
>> That IS THE Question? — Apr. 14, 2013.

++++ Check Category ‘Alton’ in sidebar dropdown for other posts >>>>


BaysiderCoveringAlton

It says ‘covering Alton’ on the banner, but I guess that is just an indication of who should pay to advertise with them.


This Monday’s joint Alton (Selectmen/) Board of Health & Alton Central (ACS) School Board meeting to discuss healthy and safety related issues at ACS that had been aired during the contentious $18M bond fiasco was probably the most germane and interesting ACS-related meeting held this year — barring the ‘that was more fun than your typical three ring circus’ deliberative session on February 3.

So how come today’s ‘The Baysider’, purportedly Alton’s newspaper has no mention, at all, about this pivotal meeting. It isn’t as if they didn’t have the time. Their deadline is Tuesday and they have routinely covered other School Board meetings that were held on a Monday — that very week, in the Thursday edition.

I noticed that Tim Croes, the regular reporter, did not appear to be present. But, I know that they sometimes use other stringers, such as a lady called ‘Elizabeth‘ who tends to do a bangup job. So, when I got back, that very night, I fired off an e-mail to my friend Josh Spaulding, the  bestriding editor of ‘The Baysider’, asking him who covered that meeting. I got a response fairly soon (as is typically the case with Josh). He did not know! He does not keep track of Alton meetings. Tim is supposed to decide.

Hhhmmmm.

So what is the deal here? I have one and ONLY ONE concern. Was this political? By conveniently ignoring the coverage of this meeting (for at least a week), ‘The Baysider’ is letting the news go cold and as such demoting the issue.

The problem here is that I know various people who, rightly or wrongly, charge ‘The Baysider’ as being the OFFICIAL ACS newspaper.

At this meeting the ACS School Board was asked a lot of pointed questions. By not covering the meeting many of the tax payers in Alton are being deprived of a chance to hear about what took place. All I want to know is is that but a coincidence. Yes, Tim, before he got his ‘get out of jail card’ that permitted him to attend Brewster, was an ACS alumni. So did ‘they’ lean on him not to cover the meeting? I do not know. But, this bothers me.

I have been particularly busy this week, since coming back from vacation, trying to publish yet another book. I just managed to get that done a few minutes ago. So, I now have a few ‘minutes’ breathing space before I start on another new book tomorrow. I had asked Deanna to find me the video of Monday’s meeting. I want to do at least one post on the “he said“, “no he didn’t“, “he definitely said ‘possibly’“, “no he didn’t“, aspect of the meeting, which dominated much of the first part of the proceedings, by juxtapositioning the questions from the Health Board and the answers from the School Board with the relevant clips from the deliberative session. At least as of Tuesday night Deanna couldn’t find the video from Monday. I will get to that.

If ‘The Baysider’ is not going to cover these meetings I will have to see what I can do. I am too old to start getting minutes. I did that 30 years ago. Maybe I could find somebody who will help out. But it irks me that the purported local paper does not feel that it is their job to cover such meetings. Funnily enough this is the SECOND instance, just this year, when ‘The Baysider’ just happened to forget to cover a crucial School Board meeting happening. Recall we had to hear about the Steve Miller ‘brandishing‘ incident from WMUR because ‘The Baysider’ waited until the following week to mention it.

Hhhmmmm.

Alton Central School (ACS): What Is The Story About Air Quality?

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Anura Guruge


++++ Do a SEARCH on ‘Alton Central’ from
……..Sidebar search trench for other related posts >>>>>


Click to access full post/article at ACS Website.

Click to access full post/article at ACS Website.


In February and March, with the divisive ‘$18 M’ school renovation bond as the lightning rod, I was perturbed to hear and read various accounts about the ‘poor’ air quality issues at Alton Central School (ACS) — especially as I have an asthmatic (on inhaler) 1st Grader attending ACS.

But, I had to get the election of the new pope out of the way before I could devote any reasonable bandwidth to this air quality issue.

Now that I have a tad more bandwidth (though I am heads down working on another book), I gave this air quality issue some thought and even contacted some ‘important people’ — Deanna in the meantime writing to the Superintendent to find out what testing had been done, when, by whom and the outcome of the results.

I look at air quality through the prism of my corporate background. While, of course, there are numerous shades of gray, in the end, at least in my mind, air quality of a building ends up being a binary issue — no different to that easy to follow adage about pregnancy. You are either pregnant or you are not. To me air quality boils down to that.

So what is the real story at ACS?

And the funny thing is that when it comes to ACS and air quality, we can, ironically, even forget the kids! We can just focus on the teachers, administrators and support staff. ACS, in addition to being a school, is also a workplace governed by all the policies and laws that apply to any other workplace with (say) 20 employees or more.

So does ACS air quality meet OSHA requirements for a workplace? I don’t know, but I assume that somebody in Alton knows.

Yes, Deanna is trying to get to the bottom of this and she will be paying (another) visit to the SAU office soon — to pick up a copy of the latest air quality testing.

Yes, I have spoken to some people in Concord, the Alton Town Hall as well as somebody who knows the laws. IF the air quality is unacceptable, the way I see it, screw the bond or lack thereof. If the air quality at ACS is indeed below par, the school needs to be shut down! Simple as that. Am I getting something wrong here? You can’t have staff and kids KNOWINGLY exposed to unacceptable air quality levels. Can you? You never know.

So, where do we stand on the air quality?

We are trying to find out.

Alton, NH, $18.6 Million School ‘Renovation’ Bond Fails To Pass. Just 48.4% ‘Yes’. So What Is The ‘Plan B’ Now?

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Anura Guruge


Related post:
>> They MUST Have The Votes In The Bag! — Feb. 3, 2013.


The vote for the $18.6 M bond failed to get even 50% of the vote.

No = 731, Yes = 685.

Total votes cast = 1,416.

Yes % = 48.38%.

So not even 50%.

So what now, mad cow? What is ‘Plan B’. Prior to the deliberative session I advocated the need for a ‘Plan B’. But, people thought they knew better. Well … what now, mad cow?

Everybody agrees, vehemently, that something has to be done to fix the issues at the school. I have yet to meet anybody who disagrees with the need for some renovation. The issue has been the price tag.

That is why I was an open supporter of Steve Miller’s $7 Million bond proposal.

Those that zeroed it down. What now, mad cow?

I have already heard that the new ‘Plan B’ is to try again for the $18 M bond next year. Tell me that that is a joke.

Already we are close to the definition for insanity. Repeatedly doing the same thing HOPING for a different outcome.

Well we know who put the school and kids in this sorry situation. Those that just could not see in them a way to compromise. I hope some have the decency to resign from the various boards and let some new folks come up with some new proposals that can get the votes. Our kids deserve better.

Steve Miller said it so well. They were going on
ONE ROLL OF THE DICE

The dice as it did last year did not come up the way they wanted.

Time for a realistic proposal that can get the votes.

For Alton Selectmen:
Lawerence Tilly  468
Robert Loring Carr   600
Robert W. Daniels   690
Stephen P. Miller   480

School Board:
Krista A. Argiropolis  672
Carlos Martinez  660
Christine Michaud-Tilly  643
(Write-in) Mary Doherty Murphy   97

The Alton $18M School Bond $0.34 vs. $1.12 Misleading Claim Makes It To The Top Of The ‘Laconia Daily Sun’.

credibilityanuDec2013x125

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Anura Guruge


Related post:
>> Credibility — Mar. 6, 2013.


Front Page. Top of banner. Click to access the 'Laconia Daily Sun'.

Front Page. Top of banner. Click to access the ‘Laconia Daily Sun’.


The article on page 4 with quotes from Barbara Howard. Click to access.

The article on page 4 with quotes from Barbara Howard. Click to access.




A masterful, mesmerizing picture on the front page of the same issue of the 'Sun' by Mark Chertok. Click to access the 'Sun' original.

A masterful, mesmerizing picture on the front page of the same issue of the ‘Sun’ by Mark Chertok. Click to access the ‘Sun’ original.


Alton, NH, $18.6 Million School ‘Renovation’ Bond In March: They MUST Have The Votes In The Bag!

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Anura Guruge


Related posts:
>> Another ‘Must Read’ Letter In The Baysider … — Feb. 1, 2013.
>> ACS Super. William Lander Estimates ‘$1 per $1,000’ …
>>Jan. 31, 2013.

>>
To Read Steve Miller’s Letter In ‘The Baysider’ — Jan. 21, 2013.
>> Stephen Miller: The Lone ‘Voice of Reason’ … — Sept. 25, 2012.


I attended today’s deliberative session at Prospect Mountain High School kind of against my own better judgement because I know how these things drag out, pan out and I really am very short on time. But, I am glad I went. According to my friend, Bob Longabaugh, the keeper of Alton’s voting statistics, only 172 of the 4,022 registered voters (4.28%) attended this session.

Well, it appears that the backers of the full $18.6 Million bond have the requisite 60%(+) votes in the bag already and that today’s session was just a formality to let people have a say in public. Bravo.

I am NOT surprised. Last year I was told that they had the votes to pass the warrant, even with the faulty wording, and even force the necessary hearing by a judge. I heard this from multiple informed sources, without equivocation. So, I was kind of baffled when it didn’t pass. But, I worked it out. They held their fire [i.e., vote] realizing that the faulty wording required the uncertainty of a judge’s intervention.

So, this year, with the warrant in place, without encumbrances, they will pull the voters out of the hat to get it to pass.

OK. That is good. As school board member Steve Miller, who was as ever eloquent and impressive, noted, we will just have to pay the higher taxes. C’est la vie. Fait accompli.

That they have the votes already and the deal is done is good for the kids. They will now get the $17 Million school upgrade that they have been clamoring for so long. You have to congratulate them on their tenacity, persistence, doggedness and ultimately their SUCCESS. I tip my hat to them.

The reason I am now 120% sure that they already have the necessary votes pledged, in the bag and locked-up is that they made sure that there was NO OTHER choice. No ‘Plan B’, no contingency plan. If this, for some reason, doesn’t get the votes …

Steve Millers $7 Million proposal to zeroed down to $1 — something Steve expected from the start.

An alternate amendment to change the $18.8 M to $4.x Million also failed.

So, there is no contingency plan, of any sort.

That is never my way. I am Mr. Contingency. I don’t even sneeze without having a contingency plan! I am not joking. Yes, I can think fast. Before I sneeze I have a contingency plan to recover from what could go wrong. When I was in high tech, those that knew me well used to joke that I had contingency plans for my contingency plans. In the 600 or so seminars I have done around the world you would never have seen me struggle like they did earlier in the meeting with their PowerPoint presentation. Even when we used 35mm slides and projectors, not only would I have two projectors, but 3 bulbs in my trousers. That debacle with the PowerPoint alone should have been an object lesson, am omen, as to why you always need contingency plans. But, that is me. [Plus, I have never done a PowerPoint that didn’t have a single graphic! A renovation presentation with no pictures! Screen placement and zooming such that it could only be read by 40% of the audience. It was the 1970s when we typed presentations onto foils. Never mind the mike that didn’t work.]

Contingency plans give you flexibility.

I have rarely seen unanimity as I saw today at the session. Everybody was in violent agreement that SOMETHING had to be done to fix the manifold problems at ACS. All the discussion was about how much should be spent.

It reminded me of the joke of a man propositioning this lady of dubious character at a bar and the conversation going: ‘we have already established that you would do it; all we are doing now is trying to agree on a price’.

The price has been agreed $18.6 Million.

No other alternatives. No other options. No other choices.

So there can be NO POSSIBILITY of this failing. If so our poor kids are screwed, totally. That is not acceptable and nobody wanted that.

ONE ROLL OF THE DICE
— but luckily for us, the dice are already loaded,
right?

This is a sure thing? Right?

The Baysider might as well already write the story that the $18.6 Million bond passed with 65% of the vote. They might as well start work now.