New England in Brief

Thursday October 11, 2012

Vermont town
rebuilds Fenway replica ball field

CAVENDISH (AP) -- Volunteers in the southern Vermont town of Cavendish are putting the finishing touches on reconstructing a mini Fenway Park that was destroyed by Tropical Storm Irene.

Selectman Mark Huntley says Greven Field was destroyed when the Black River overflowed its banks and tore through the complex when Irene churned through Vermont in 2011.

After the town’s homes, businesses and roads were repaired, townspeople turned their attention to the field, a pint-size replica of the 100-year-old Fenway Park. The floodwaters destroyed the field, and its 16-foot-high Green Monster left-field wall was knocked over and covered with silt.

Huntley said the town is now transforming the field into a recreation center, with a volleyball net and a basketball court behind the reconstructed Green Monster.

Bear perches above N.H. bus stop

CONWAY, N.H. (AP) -- A school bus stop in Conway, N.H., has been temporarily re-located due to the appearance of a 300-pound black bear.

Conway police told WMWV radio that the bear was first spotted Tuesday morning sitting about 60 feet up a pine tree. Police guarded the stop Wednesday morning while students waited for their bus, and the stop has been moved to another area while officers figure out how to safely trap and transfer the bear.

New Hampshire Fish and Game conservation officers are working with a state wildlife biologist on how best to accomplish that. In the meantime, police say the bear looks very comfortable and isn’t bothering anyone.

North Maine man injured in potato conveyor accident

MAPLETON, Maine (AP) -- Maine State Police say a 22-year-old Mars Hill man is in the hospital with injuries from an accident involving a machine that moves potatoes into storage bins.

Police say Gregory Cousins was working at County Farms LLC potato house in Mapleton Wednesday morning when his clothing became caught in a bin piler, a machine that moves potatoes from a truck to storage bins. The accident caused asphyxiation around Cousins’ neck.

Police credit quick actions of Cousins’ co-workers for getting him cut loose from the machine.

Research group says Maine tax ranking improved

AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) -- A tax research group says Maine’s ranking for its business tax climate has improved to No. 30 nationally.

The Tax Foundation’s 2013 list shows an improvement from Maine’s No. 37 ranking. The Washington-based, nonpartisan group’s index compares the states in five areas of taxation that impact business: corporate, individual income and sales taxes, unemployment insurance taxes and taxes on property.

Maine’s Gov. Paul LePage is pleased with Maine’s new ranking. He notes that Maine had the biggest improvement in the Tax Foundation’s ranking this year, a result of the repeal of Maine’s alternative minimum tax and a change in treatment of net operating losses.

Additional changes to Maine’s tax structure, including lower brackets for individual income taxes that take effect Jan. 1, 2013, were not considered in this year’s report.

Medical records company buys Foxborough building

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) -- A medical record-keeping systems company has announced plans to turn a 26-acre site in Foxborough into an office and conference center that will eventually employ 500 people.

Westwood-based Medical Information Technology, also known as Meditech, has purchased the property at 1 Constitution Way for nearly $20 million.

A company spokesman said the rapidly expanding company bought the property to accommodate growth and to be used for customer conferences typically held eight to 10 times a year.

The company has nine other locations, including five in Massachusetts.

The company plans to conduct major renovations to reconfigure it as a conference center. Renovations are expected to be completed by the end of next year.

Mass.governor says drug firm may have misled regulators

BOSTON (AP) -- Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick says the specialty pharmacy linked to a deadly meningitis outbreak may have misled regulators and done work beyond the scope of its state license.

The New England Compounding Center in Framingham made a steroid that was used in contaminated injections that have sickened more than 130 people in 10 states. Twelve have died.

Patrick told reporters Wednesday that state and federal agencies "may have been misled by some of the information we were given."

He says the company was supposed to fill specific prescriptions for specific patients but instead made big batches of medicine and sold them out of state.

He says that was outside of its state license.

The company has shut down and is cooperating with investigators.

Sen. Brown, Warren spar in 3rd debate

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (AP) -- Republican U.S. Sen. Scott Brown and his Democratic challenger Elizabeth Warren fought over who would be better at creating jobs, protecting Medicare and keeping down the cost of higher education during their third debate Wednesday night.

Warren faulted Brown for voting against a series of Democratic-sponsored jobs bills and said Brown would repeal the federal Affordable Care Act.

Brown said he opposed the jobs bills because they would have hiked taxes. He said he opposes what he called "Obamacare" because it includes tax increases.

The two also sparred on higher education.

Brown faulted Warren for her salary as a Harvard Law School professor, while Warren said the country needs to reinvest in education to help students hoping to go to college.

One topic that failed to surface was Warren’s claims of Native American heritage that led off the first two debates.

Kerouac’s only play premiers in Mass. hometown

LOWELL, Mass. (AP) -- Beat Generation notables Jack Kerouac, Neal Cassady and Allen Ginsberg come to life in Kerouac’s Massachusetts hometown of Lowell in the first production of his only play this week.

"Beat Generation" takes its name from the group of writers whose works raged against the conformity and consumerism of the 1950s. The play offers a glimpse into the everyday lives of Kerouac and his compatriots as they booze, bet and banter.

Director Charles Towers describes the comedy as a "kind of goodbye to the friendship" that characterized Kerouac’s famous novel "On The Road."

The play is being performed as a staged reading of sorts at the Merrimack Repertory Theatre. It includes a set, props and costumes but the actors carry their scripts. It runs from Wednesday through Sunday.

Jackson Lab won’t get credit for UConn jobs

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) -- Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s office says a bio-science firm won’t get credit for creating jobs funded by the University of Connecticut but linked to the company’s planned Connecticut research facility.

State Sen. Len Suzio, R-Meriden, had complained after Catherine Smith, the commissioner of the state Department of Economic and Community Development, informed him in an email that UConn jobs would count toward the 300 that The Jackson Laboratory had agreed to create in the state in exchange for $290 million in state aid.

Andrew Doba, a spokesman for Malloy, on Wednesday initially defended the decision to count the UConn jobs toward the 300, but later said there had been a misunderstanding. He says the 10 faculty positions will be in addition to the 300 Jackson has agreed to provide.


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