Selectmen Meet Youngest Police Force Member

by Gina M. Votour

Turco poses with his handler, officer James Connor

The Hudson Police Department recently welcomed a new employee, who is currently the youngest force member.  Turco, a 14-month-old male Belgian Malinois, will shortly begin training within the K-9 Academy through the Manchester Police Department, alongside his handler, master patrol officer James Connor.

Police canines are extremely useful in assisting with arrests.  Among the talents of canine force members is their ability to detect illegal street drugs, find missing children and Alzheimer’s patients, track missing pieces of case evidence, and tail criminals, all while ensuring protection for their police handlers.

Imported from the Netherlands, Turco currently weighs around 70 pounds.  His first training portion will be a 12-week patrol program.  In the fall, this training will be followed by a narcotics program, which could last up to two months.

Officer Kevin Sullivan explained that because Belgian Malinois are dogs with “very high energy levels” they are often chosen over German Shepherds to assist police forces.  Turco lived up to this description, bringing smiles to the faces of many as he made his enthusiastic entrance into the Board of Selectmen’s March 9 meeting.

Turco joins fellow force canine member Akim, a black German Shepherd.  Since late 2003, Akim has partnered with Sullivan, a 21-year force member who has spent close to 13 years as canine officer.  Upon completion of Turco’s training, both Sullivan and Akim plan to retire from the force by year’s end.  Connor will then take over as the Hudson Police Department’s Canine Officer.

In closing, Sullivan assured the board of Turco’s ability to perform his job when the time comes.

“Once he’s fully trained, you are going to be totally amazed by what this dog can do.  You are going to get your dollars worth out of this dog.  I dare, once this dog is drug trained, for anyone to even attempt to bring drugs into this town and try to hide them anywhere,” he proclaimed.

Students and Faculty Compete in Annual Mr. AHS Competition

by Doug Robinson

John Conrad

Not a parking space could be found in the Alvirne High School parking lot, as hundreds of students, faculty, parents, and those who just came to cheer for their favorite contestant, filled the gymnasium for the annual Mr. AHS Competition.  Hosted by the Alvirne Prom Committee, selected Alvirne seniors and selected Alvirne staff or faculty compete for the honor of being crowned as Mr. AHS or Mr. Senior AHS.

The student competitors for the 2009 competition were Johnny Baldwin, A. Dickenson, Caleb Donnelly, Nick Goldsack, Ryan Houle, Alex Jones, Mike Martinez, Mike McLaughlin, Al Nickerson, Pat Reidy, Tom Rowe, and Shawn Trowbridge.  The Mr. AHS Senior competitors were John Conrad, Mark MacLean, Jeff Peterson, Tom Langer, and Mr. Eric Pascoal.

“I would like to thank our sponsors – David’s Bridal, Classic Tuxedo, and Anne’s Country Florals – for all their help with this year’s Prom Fashion Show,” commented Ashleigh Deschenes.

Among all the pomp and circumstance of a judged c ompetition, students walked arm-in-arm with female classmates as they wore the latest “fall fashions” of clothing.  With hair and make-up applied by professionals, students strutted their stuff across the stage and down the runway to the boisterous applause and cheers from their friends and fellow classmates in the audience.

Mike McLaughlin won top honors and was crowned Mr. AHS.

John Conrad, Building Trades teacher, received his Mr. AHS Senior from last year’s winner, AHS Principal Bryan Lane.

Hudson Applies for Backup Generator Grant

by Gina Votour

Within the After Action Report produced by Hudson Fire Chief Shawn Murray following the December 2008 ice storm, the fire department and other town sectors revealed what worked well during the handling of this crisis.  The report also included strategies for future improvements, should a similar event occur in the future.

A major issue highlighted by Hudson Highway Department Road Agent Kevin Burns was the fact that the lack of a backup generator for the Marsh Road water tank caused water pressure problems within the north end of town just two days into the storm.  Burns reported at the time that “the installation of a backup power supply at this station should become a town/water utility priority.”

To address the labor costs associated with this type of project, the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services (NHDES) Drinking Water and Groundwater Bureau offers a Generator Installation Grant Program for community water systems.  Within this program, municipalities may apply for up to $4,500 to be put toward generator installation labor costs.  The program does not, however, cover the cost of the generator itself.

Town Administrator Steve Malizia received unanimous approval from the Board of Selectmen this week to go forward on this grant application, requesting an amount of $4,345 from NHDES.

“The Town of Hudson will be installing a backup generator for the Marsh Road Water Tank.  This 2,000,000 gallon water tank is a critical component of the Hudson Water Utility and it provides fire protection and domestic service to a large share of Hudson water customers.  There is currently no backup power generator for this water tank,” Malizia stated on the grant application form.

A 40KW diesel generator has already been purchased for $20,620 from Power Up Generator Service Company of Auburn and is expected to arrive in Hudson around April 1.  Generator purchase funds were drawn from the Water Utility account’s FY09 budget.

Brian Mason Electric of Hudson has been hired by the town to perform the actual installation of the generator.  Combining the generator fee with the proposed installation grant amount brings the total project cost to $24,965.

According to the Hudson Highway Department, “once installed, this generator will allow the pumps to continue to pump water into this above ground tank and will allow for continuous pressure.  [The] generator will also allow for the operation of the fire pumps at that location if needed during a power outage.”  Road Agent Burns also mentioned in a letter to Malizia that “[the generator] includes a sound suppression kit to eliminate most of the noise during operation.”

The deadline for grant proposal is March 31.  Hudson can then expect NHDES’s decision regarding this grant within the following month or two.  If all goes according to plan, the project will be complete by June 30, 2009.

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