New England Briefs
At least 2 New Hampshire
ski resorts opening for business
BRETTON WOODS, N.H. (AP) -- At least two New Hampshire ski resorts are opening for business.
Bretton Woods and Loon Mountain are opening Friday for the season.
The resorts reported good conditions for making snow.
Waterville Valley Resort is projected to open Saturday. Cannon Mountain, Cranmore Mountain, Mount Sunapee and Ragged Mountain are projected to open next week.
Loudon speedway flips switch on ‘Gift of Lights’
LOUDON, N.H. (AP) -- New Hampshire Motor Speedway is flipping the switch on a two-mile, 2.5 million-bulb light display that helps raise money for nearly 50 different children’s charities.
The "Gift of Lights" tour starts Friday afternoon at the speedway in Loudon. The drive-through tour includes twice as many lights as last year arranged in more than 400 holiday light displays that took nearly three weeks to set up.
Admission is $15 per car Mondays-Thursdays, and $20 per car on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays through January 5.
1,000 pizzas to Rockaway
for storm relief
PITTSFIELD, N.H. (AP) -- A New Hampshire pizza maker is lending new meaning to pizza-to-go -- sending an oven truck and up to 1,000 pizzas to storm ravaged Rockaway Beach in Queens, N.Y.
Brad Sterl, CEO of Pittsfield-based Rustic Crust, says a truck carrying a wood-fired pizza oven and American Flatbread frozen pizzas will arrive at the Belle Harbor School in Rockaway on Saturday.
Sterl says his truck and staff are prepared to feed hundreds of residents without power and cleanup volunteers.
Superstorm Sandy destroyed 111 homes on the Rockaway peninsula, where most people two weeks later are still without power and debris is piled high.
The New Hampshire company makes Rustic Crust ready-made pizza crusts and all-natural American Flatbread pizzas.
Mass. worker charged in scam to defraud immigrants
BOSTON (AP) -- A Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles employee is accused of charging illegal immigrants for driver’s licenses she never delivered and falsely claiming she could help them delay deportation.
Adriana Ferreira of Boston was arrested Friday and pleaded not guilty in Suffolk Superior Court to charges including corruption, bribery and larceny. A judge set $50,000 cash bail.
Authorities claim Ferreira, a naturalized U.S. citizen from Brazil, charged victims $2,000, but didn’t deliver any documents. They said she also falsely told the victims she knew someone in the federal government who could delay a deportation for a fee. Authorities say Ferreira didn’t know any immigration officials.
Ferreira’s attorney is questioning the strength of the evidence against her.
Chandler selected as
N.H. House minority leader
CONCORD, N.H. (AP) -- State Rep. Gene Chandler has been chosen in a House Republican caucus to serve as the minority leader for the upcoming legislative session.
Chandler previously was speaker of the House. The Bartlett Republican was elected to serve a 14th term in the Nov. 6 election that cast the GOP into the minority.
He said Thursday that the GOP would try to regain the majority by "delivering the Republican message of economic opportunity and job creation through lowering the burden of taxes and regulation."
His selection was criticized by New Hampshire Democratic Party Chairman Ray Buckley, who called Chandler a "loyal ally of the Tea Party and (House Speaker William) O’Brien."
House Democrats caucus on Saturday. If they stick together, their nominee will be elected speaker when the Legislature organizes Dec. 5.
Maine rangers back from
N.Y. storm recovery detail
AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) -- New Yorkers hit by Superstorm Sandy wondered what Maine forest rangers -- better known for fighting forest fires -- were doing in their neck of the woods during the recovery effort.
Kent Nelson of the Maine Forest Service had an answer Friday, a day after the nine-member detail returned to Maine: "We were kind of the eyes and ears of the (New York) health department."
A nine-member forest ranger team was mobilized two days after the devastating storm hit the city, and they remained there for 14 days, working 12- to 14-hour shifts, said Nelson.
The rangers worked with the New York Health Department and New York National Guard in the Coney Island section of Brooklyn, organizing and managing the effort to check individual homes in an area not-at-all like the Maine woods.
The Maine team managed three medical-assistance teams that conducted more than 21,000 door-to-door health and wellness checks in nearly 200 high-rise buildings.
Mostly, people said they were OK and thanked the visiting officials, and asked when one service or another would be restored. The Guard and health officials made many trips to get medicines for residents. Hundreds of people lined up at relief vans to get food, water, cleaning supplies and other needed items, said Nelson.
"We had quite a few people say ‘What are Maine forest rangers doing in New York?"’ said Nelson.
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