In The News

March 30, 2010

Shaheen talks health care tax credits with business owners in Portsmouth

by Geoff Cunningham Jr.

PORTSMOUTH - Small business owner Dennis Lunn has struggled to offer his employees affordable health insurance for years with each renewal period bringing drastically increased premiums that result in fewer opting to buy the coverage. Portsmouth-based Bailey Works owner John Bailey has never been able to offer his three workers health insurance with coverage for them being out of his price-range. However, the passage of the controversial health care package by Congress may remedy the cha… Continue Reading

March 30, 2010

Shaheen hears small business owners' woes

by Jim Kozubek

PORTSMOUTH - U.S. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., met with small business owners struggling to pay for health care yesterday to field questions about the passage last week of sweeping federal health-care legislation. Rising health-care costs have been particularly onerous to small businesses, according to the senator, and as she met at Jumpin' Jay's Fish Cafe with owner Jay McSharry; Jon Bailey, owner of Bailey Works Inc.; and Dennis Lunn, owner of The Bagel Works Cafe, she told them the rec… Continue Reading

March 30, 2010

Shaheen touts health care reform in Portsmouth

by Dave Choate

PORTSMOUTH - Trying to draw attention to health care tax credits for small businesses, Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., held a news conference Monday afternoon alongside owners of three such local businesses. The health care tax credits for small businesses, part of sweeping and controversial health care reform legislation passed by Congress, are available to businesses with fewer than 25 employees making annual wages of $50,000 or less. Those that qualify can receive a tax credit of up to 35 … Continue Reading

March 30, 2010

N.H. approved for wind storm disaster monies

by Adam D. Krauss

DOVER - President Barack Obama delivered a bright spot in otherwise crummy weather Monday. He granted New Hampshire's request for a major disaster declaration from late February's wind storm. Gov. John Lynch sought the declaration, which will make public assistance available for impacted communities in Strafford, Rockingham, Grafton, Hillsborough, Merrimack and Sullivan counties. Lynch's office says preliminary and partial damage assessments compiled by the state and local communities e… Continue Reading

March 29, 2010

Shaheens honored at City Year gala in New Castle

by Leslie Modica

NEW CASTLE - Bill and Jeanne Shaheen have been a part of City Year since it was only an idea. When City Year Co-Founder Alan Khazei mentioned the idea of an "urban peace corps" to Sen. Jeanne Shaheen - back when they were working together on the presidential campaign of Sen. Gary Hart in 1984 - Shaheen knew it was a good idea. She admitted, however, that she couldn't have imagined that it would become what it is today. Twelve years later, when Shaheen was elected governor, she called K… Continue Reading

March 22, 2010

Transitional care included in health overhaul bill

by Holly Ramer

Home health care providers in New Hampshire and Maine are praising a provision of the health care overhaul legislation that would expand upon their efforts to keep elderly patients out of the hospital. The provision, sponsored by Sens. Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., and Susan Collins, R-Maine, would create a transitional care benefit for Medicare recipients. The goal is to provide follow-up care for patients after they leave the hospital in hopes of preventing costly re-admissions. Typical serv… Continue Reading

March 18, 2010

Shaheen To Host Export Forum In NH This Month

MANCHESTER, N.H. (AP) - Sen. Jeanne Shaheen is hosting a forum to help New Hampshire's small businesses explore export opportunities and expand into new markets. The Granite State Export Forum will be held March 31 at the New Hampshire Institute of Politics at Saint Anselm College. It will include a panel discussion featuring the senator, representatives from federal and state trade organizations, and small business leaders. Speaking on the Senate floor Wednesday, Shaheen said increasing … Continue Reading

March 15, 2010

Unfinished Work in the Balkans

by Sens. Jeanne Shaheen and George Voinovich

After two devastating world wars on the European continent, the United States and its trans-Atlantic allies made a difficult but strong commitment to build a Europe that is whole, free, and at peace. This historic endeavor has not been easy, and it has come with extraordinary effort, time, and cost. Although the U.S. has made tremendous progress over the past 60 years, the job is not yet finished. The Western Balkans remains the missing piece of the puzzle in Europe, and its integration i… Continue Reading

March 14, 2010

Insurance rate hikes in N.H. are questioned

by Deborah McDermott

United States Sen. Jeanne Shaheen said she sees the increases in the health insurance premiums of Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Hampshire as emblematic of a disconnect between health insurance companies and rank-and-file Granite Staters - and all Americans, for that matter. "When you see the profits that they've made, and you hear the stories of people who are desperate to pay their bills, something's wrong," said the New Hampshire Democrat. New Hampshire individual and group ratep… Continue Reading

March 11, 2010

Salem Fire Department gets $24K grant

by Jillian Jorgensen

SALEM - The Fire Department has been awarded a $24,300 Assistance to Firefighters grant, U.S. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen announced yesterday. The grant is administered by the Department of Homeland Security. Fire Chief Kevin Breen said the department will use the money to purchase thermal imaging cameras. The cameras are used primarily for search and rescue, finding people in smoke-filled rooms. They also can be used to find fires in walls and ceilings, or determine where in a smoky building a f… Continue Reading

March 10, 2010

Senators Unveil Bill to Ban Banks' High-Risk Trades

by Fawn Johnson

WASHINGTON-Two senators introduced legislation Wednesday echoing calls from the Obama administration to bar taxpayer-insured banks and their affiliates and subsidiaries from engaging in proprietary trading. The bill, sponsored by Sens. Jeff Merkley (D., Ore.) and Carl Levin (D., Mich.), is designed to "make banking boring again," according to a summary. President Barack Obama proposed the "Volcker Rule," named after former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker, in January as the adminis… Continue Reading

March 10, 2010

U.S. Senate votes to study job loss in N.E.

by Ted Nesi

WASHINGTON - The U.S. Senate voted Tuesday to have Congress' investigative arm conduct an extensive study of why New England and the Midwest have lost jobs over the past 20 years and how to boost employment in the regions. The Government Accountability Office report would lay out the pattern of job losses over the past two decades; the impact the offshoring of manufacturing jobs has had; and recommendations for attracting new jobs and industries to the area. Senators adopted the amendmen… Continue Reading

March 04, 2010

From Haiti to a new home

by Jason Claffey

SOMERSWORTH - A 2 1⁄2-year-old Haitian boy made it from the earthquake-devastated country to his adoptive mother on Maple Street thanks to an unlikely team of strangers that included Hollywood actor Sean Penn, a staffer from U.S. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen's office, and a Florida construction contractor moonlighting as a humanitarian worker. "He's been through an awful lot to get here," said the boy's mother, Jenna Tousignant, as she bounced little Cal in her lap at her kitchen table Wedne… Continue Reading

March 04, 2010

Londonderry fire station to benefit from federal grant

by Eric Parry

LONDONDERRY - Central fire station will be outfitted with sprinkler and fire alarm systems, thanks to a $50,544 federal grant. U.S. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., announced the award yesterday. The grant is meant to benefit operations and safety. "We're finally going to practice what we preach," fire Chief Kevin MacCaffrie said. Without the award, the chief said, the town could not outfit the station with the safety equipment. Londonderry is the latest of several local communities to be a… Continue Reading

March 04, 2010

Lilac City fire gets $67g federal grant

by Joey Cresta

ROCHESTER - The Lilac City's Fire Department has been awarded nearly $67,000 in federal funds through the Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program. U.S. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., announced the award Wednesday. The department will get $66,896 through the Department of Homeland Security program for operations and safety. In a separate statement, U.S. Rep. Carol-Shea Porter, D-Rochester, said the funding was only part of the total awarded, with $50,544 also going to the Londonderry Fire … Continue Reading

March 03, 2010

NH Salmonella Victim Lobbies For Food Safety Bill

by Holly Ramer

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) - A Bedford teenager who continues to suffer health problems three years after eating a salmonella-tainted tomato is urging Congress to require more government inspections of food manufacturers. Ryan Wilson, now 15, spent three days in the hospital after eating a bad bacon, lettuce and tomato sandwich at a pizza shop in Sept. 2007. "The dehydration itself was bad enough, then having to get up 15 minutes to go the bathroom in the middle night, and getting almost no sleep … Continue Reading

February 26, 2010

Shaheen wants big health insurer to justify rate hikes

by Adam D. Krauss

DOVER - U.S. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen wants the nation's largest health insurer to justify steep rate increases on individual premiums, which are in the order of 12 to 13 percent in New Hampshire and nearly 24 percent in Maine. "It's hard to justify those kind of rate increases when the company's profits increased ... almost $5 billion in 2009," she said in an interview Thursday. "While I appreciate costs are rising, their profits are rising too. So I think it's hard to justify in this econom… Continue Reading

February 25, 2010

Rising Insurance Rates Burden NH Business Owners

CONCORD, N.H. -- Sen. Jeanne Shaheen and some N.H. business owners say record profits at insurance companies have them wondering why they've seen a recent spike in premiums. Scott Baetz, a small business owner who employs four employees, said he's seen his rates go up 8 to 15 percent every year since 2000. "We've made a lot of adjustments," said Baetz. "I think at a time when they are bringing in billions of dollars in profits, to raise rates on families and small businesses just doesn'… Continue Reading

February 25, 2010

WellPoint Asked To Provide Calif Rate Data To US Senators

by Dinah Wisenberg Brin

Lawmakers intensified political pressure on WellPoint Inc. (WLP) as leaders of the Senate Finance Committee asked the health insurer Wednesday to provide data related to planned rate increases on California members with individual policies. The letter from Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D., Mont.) and ranking member Chuck Grassley (R., Iowa) came the same day that a House subcommittee scrutinized plans by WellPoint's Anthem Blue Cross business to raise individual … Continue Reading

February 19, 2010

Senate 'holds' sign of a broken system

It's early in the political year but already New Hampshire's would-be U.S. senators are calling, predictably, for big change in Washington. Here's one commitment we hope they'll make, Republicans and Democrats alike: If elected, they will work hard to re-establish the time-honored American concept of majority rule. "Majority," as in 51 votes wins. This is opposed to the Senate's Byzantine rules and traditions that force nearly everything to require a super-majority of 60 votes to pass, th… Continue Reading

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