City Newsletter: Clerks office thanks you for patience, gifts

The new leaf collection system moves up Sewell Falls Road in Concord on Thursday, November 5, 2020. GEOFF FORESTER
The new leaf collection system moves up Sewell Falls Road in Concord on Thursday, November 5, 2020. GEOFF FORESTER
The new leaf collection system moves up Sewell Falls Road in Concord on Thursday, November 5, 2020. GEOFF FORESTER
The new leaf collection system moves up Sewell Falls Road in Concord on Thursday, November 5, 2020. GEOFF FORESTER

The city manager’s office sent out the City Manager’s Newsletter last Friday. The full newsletter can be found by going to concordnh.gov and clicking the “Newsletter” button. Here are some highlights:

Holiday reminders

Christmas parade: The Christmas Parade will take place on Saturday, Nov. 21, at 9:30 a.m. The parade will form at the N.H. Department of Transportation parking lot on Hazen Drive and proceed down Hazen Drive to Loudon Road; turn left onto Loudon Road and proceed to Canterbury Road where it will disband in the parking lot of the Concord Business Center. The following streets will be closed during the parade: Loudon Road, from Hazen Drive to Canterbury Road; and Canterbury Road. Please maintain social distancing while enjoying the parade.

Thanksgiving holiday: All city offices will be closed from 4:30 p.m. on Nov. 25 through Nov. 27 for the Thanksgiving holiday. Trash collection is delayed by one day on Thanksgiving day and the rest of the week.

Christmas tree lighting: Concord’s 28th annual Christmas Tree Lighting Celebration will be held at the State House Plaza, North Main Street, on Nov. 27 from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Main Street will be closed, between Centre Street and School Street, from 3:30 p.m. until 6:30 p.m. Masks are strongly encouraged, as well as social distancing while enjoying this event to keep everyone safe.

Thank you from the Clerk’s office

The Concord City Clerk’s Office has been operating at maximum capacity, during this busy 2020 COVID-19 and Election season, to ensure that all election and non-election services were offered to our residents. We are thankful to serve our community and would like to extend a warm thank you to the residents of Concord and visiting public for having patience with our longer than usual lines and for all the smiles, jokes, and positive feedback that fueled our long days.

A special shout out is due for the following groups, departments and individuals for being our partners, backup support, and cheerleaders during one of the busiest times for our office:

City Clerk’s staff – So many special thanks go out to all of our temporary and full-time employees this year for always going above and beyond. All of our staff members unquestioningly volunteered to work long days, nights, and weekends, to ensure the entire election process was successfully carried out. This significant undertaking kept everyone busy, but due to all of our extended co-workers support citywide, we also maintained all other Clerk’s office services to best serve our residents and visitors.

City Manager’s Office – Many thanks go out to Tom Aspell, the City Manager for all his support, staffing assistance, and leadership with all election matters. We’d also like to include Stefanie Breton and Sue Stevens from the City Manager’s office for all their help coordinating mass media communication efforts and for all the extra general office assistance they supplied. Their kind smiles and helping hands kept us motivated.

City Council – We’d like to thank all Concord City Council members for their support of the Clerk’s office, providing public support and outreach, all the sweet treats, and their positive energy throughout the election process.

A special shout out goes to Karen Emis-Williams, the Human Services Director, for supplying our staff with fresh doughnuts, staff coverage, and for pitching in anytime she visited. Her high energy, positive attitude and team player enthusiasm was unmatched.

General Services Highway Services – Sending thanks to Jim Major and his crew for staging all of our citywide voting signage and message boards to ensure Election Day directions and communications were shared. Also, thanks to Angelina Zulkic for her communication efforts!

General Services Public Properties – Sending many thanks to Jay Burgess, Jamie Bardwell, and Bobby Knapp and all of their teams for ensuring all health and safety measures were taken at City Hall and all polling locations on Election Day to assist all voter activities citywide.

Community Development Services – Many thanks go to our Economic Development and Engineering Services Division staff friends for their positive attitudes, GIS and print efforts, and all general office assistance offered.

Assessing – Many thanks to the Assessing staff for their general office assistance, sweet treats, and supportive energy.

We’d also like to thank our OMB friends for allowing us to take over all of their free office space and for not complaining about the afternoon Disney sing-alongs that kept our temps in high spirits.

Our City Hall door greeters all played an integral part in our Election success story for their assistance in coordinating our social distancing practices, keeping our patrons informed and entertained while they waited for entry to City Hall, and for all their dedication to public service no matter the weather or temperatures outside.

We appreciate all of the Concord Police & Parking Department’s assistance, coverage and support with security, traffic, and general safety during both Elections.

We appreciate all of the Concord Fire Department’s assistance and support relating to providing ID badges, PPE research, and general support during both Elections.

Gretchen Wood and Don Matthews were amazing helpers in processing all of our 12,000 pieces of outgoing mail, and we greatly appreciate their time and efforts.

Our IT department kept our servers operational and our computers going, so kudos to their entire team for their round the clock availability and flexibility keeping us powered.

We’d like to thank our amazing legal team for keeping us informed, trained, and legal during our election preparations. They’re never too busy to lend a legal hand or hold a door open when in need.

The United States Postal Service and our very own mailman, Josh, made amazing partners during the mass mailing and Absentee Ballot election process. No matter the weather, time of day, or amount of bins, they came with a smile and delivered every parcel.

An enormous Citywide thanks goes out to all of our Ward Officials, poll workers, volunteers, polling ward locations and the community at large for conducting another successful election full of transparency, integrity, and accommodation while practicing COVID-19 safety guidance and procedures.

We’d also like to personally thank The Works business owner, Don Brueggemann, and his staff for supplying the Clerk’s office and our 10 Ward locations with bagel breakfasts during the elections. We all ate a ton of cookies and candy, so the healthy carbs were much appreciated!

Everett Arena Ice activities

Public ice skating is taking place at the Douglas N. Everett Arena Monday through Saturday, 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. and Sundays 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Admission is $6 for ages 14 and up and $5 for ages 13 and below. Skate rentals are available in the Pro Shop for $5. Adult Stick Practice (ages 14 and up) hours are Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. Additional hours are available Monday through Thursday from 3:30 p.m. to 4:45 p.m. through November 25. Helmet and gloves are required. Youth Stick Practice (ages 13 and below) hours are Fridays from 3:30 p.m. to 4:45 p.m. through November 27. Full equipment is required. Admission for adult and youth stick practice is $10.

Masks or facial coverings are required inside of the arena and while on the ice during public ice skating. Masks are recommended while on the ice during stick practice and hockey, but are not required when actively engaged in athletics. Skate rentals will continue to be thoroughly disinfected after each use. Other COVID-19 guidelines at the arena remain in place, including one-way traffic throughout the facility and on the ice, only unlocking building doors 15 minutes prior to events, reducing public skating to 50% occupancy or less, and limiting spectating to immediate family only. Siblings must stay with a parent at all times or the group will be asked to leave. The Everett Arena has been exceeding all guidelines for cleaning and sanitization, has had extra precautions in place for increased air filtration, and continues to provide hand sanitizer throughout the facility.

All Everett Arena visitors and staff will be required to complete a COVID-19 screening in the main entrance lobby. A new screening kiosk has been installed that uses touchless mobile technology to guide guests through a COVID-19 risk assessment. The new screening process includes scanning a QR code at the arena on your phone, filling out a quick questionnaire, and using a unique QR code that is then generated on your phone to scan at the kiosk to log your visit. The QR code is time-sensitive and will expire after the end of the day. Once the code is scanned, visitors will use the hands-free thermometer to scan their wrist or forehead for a temperature screening. Paper forms will be available as a backup if a visitor does not have access to a phone or if there are any issues with the kiosk.

Find full COVID-19 guidelines and more information about programs at the Everett Arena at concordnh.gov/arena.

Fall leaf collection

Bulk leaf collection will continue as weather permits through Dec. 11, focusing on residential areas within the City’s drainage system. Bagged collection will be returning on Nov. 23 and continue for three weeks for residents with curbside trash collection.

In order for our crews to practice safe social distancing, leaf vacuums will not be used for bulk leaf collection. Instead, crews are using leaf loaders. This means that bulk collection requires all leaves to be raked fully into the street along the edge of the road or sidewalk to be reachable for collection. Please avoid piling leaves and keep leaves tight along the curb to keep streets clear. Avoid on-street parking Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. until collection is finished to not block access to leaves.

You can view the bulk leaf collection map at https://gis.concordnh.gov/arcgis/LeafCollectionServer.

Bagged leaf collection will begin Nov. 23 and run through Dec. 11. he bagged program has been well received by residents that elect to participate in the program. The program provides an alternative method for residents to dispose of leaves, while providing more predictability with a guaranteed weekly collection. Bagged collection is not weather dependent, unlike bulk leaf collection. Leaves must be placed in biodegradable yard waste bags and/or labeled rigid containers such as trash barrels. Leaves must be placed at the curb by 7 a.m. each Monday during bagged collection, regardless of your trash collection day. Bagged collection will not necessarily coincide with trash collection like it does in the spring due to variable leaf volumes at the curb. Leaves will be collected by the city’s solid waste contractor, Casella, and will be collected separately from trash and recycling. Although bagged collection is not weather dependent, be mindful of the weather and bag leaves early if necessary to avoid snow cover.

Alternative Options: An eco-friendly alternative is to mulch the leaves into your lawn by running over leaves with a lawn mower or mulching blade. Residents also have the option to bring leaves to a local accepting farm or Gelinas Excavation & Earth Materials Recycling Center for free with proof of residency if the load is smaller than a non-commercial pick-up truck. Brush, branches, and limbs are not acceptable materials for the City’s leaf collection, but can be dropped off separately at Gelinas Excavation & Earth Materials Recycling Center for a nominal fee. Gelinas Excavation & Earth Materials Recycling Center is located at 10 Intervale Road, off Fort Eddy Road, and is open 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. Saturday hours will be available from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Nov. 21, and Dec.r 5. No Saturday hours on Nov. 28 due to the Thanksgiving Day holiday. Hours are weather permitting and should be confirmed by calling them ahead of drop off.

Program Questions & Concerns: We realize bulk leaf collection faces some challenges, including: collecting leaves too early from an area before all the leaves have fallen, having to suspend collection before reaching all residents due to the onset of winter weather, and the uncertainty of when collection will occur due to unpredictable leaf volumes and weather conditions. However, we know bulk collection provides convenience and is an appreciated program. Adding the bagged collection in 2018 added an additional service to address the challenges of bulk collection while providing more predictability and opportunity for residents to participate in leaf collection. Starting in 2019 crews in the south end joined the east side crew and Penacook crew in rotating their starting location each year for bulk collection. Now all three crews alternate where they start collecting leaves each year in order to provide a more fair collection for residents. If you have any questions or concerns, we ask you to please view our updated FAQs.

Please visit http://www.concordnh.gov/leafcollection for more program information and detailed maps.

Drought

As of Nov. 12, drought conditions remain unchanged from last week. Concord remains mostly in extreme drought conditions with a small northwest portion in severe conditions. The precipitation deficit is 11.03 inches below average for this time of year. More rain is desperately needed to minimize conditions. There appears to be a chance for some rain next week and the National Weather Service predicts a normal probability for precipitation for the region in the next 8-14 days. Fortunately, Concord’s water consumption still continues to decrease. The city’s water production last week was a daily average of 3.524 MGD (millions of gallons per day). Please continue to use water wisely. Drought conditions will continue to be monitored closely. Low-income residential well owners may qualify for assistance with the State of New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services (NHDES) and NH Drinking Water and Groundwater Advisory Commission if they are experiencing drought-related loss of a safe, reliable source of drinking water at their primary residence. Short-term relief is available through the Drought Assistance Program for bottled water and financial assistance for activities associated with replacing or improving a homeowner’s well or connecting to an available community water supply. We thank everyone for their efforts to conserve water. Every drop counts! Find drought updates and water conservation tips at concordnh.gov/conservation.

Restaurant grant program

The deadline to apply is Nov. 20.

The City of Concord and the Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce are pleased to announce a limited grant program for Concord restaurants. Grants of up to $1,500 will be awarded to restaurants to purchase materials that will help them increase their seating capacity.

According to Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce President Tim Sink, “Concord restaurants have been hit hard by COVID-19, and they will no longer be able to continue outdoor dining beyond November 14, as the City will need to be prepared for sidewalk and street snow removal. These grants can be used to pay for dividers or other materials that will help restaurants increase their indoor seating capacity.”

The Concord City Council appropriated $15,000 for this grant program from funds that were initially allocated to the annual fireworks display, which was canceled due to the pandemic. The Chamber will be responsible for administrating the grants. Funding is limited and open to both Chamber members and non-members.

To apply for a grant, Concord restaurants should fill out the online Concord Restaurant Grant Program submission form below. Approved grants will be paid on a reimbursement basis with invoice copies for documentation. The deadline to apply is Nov. 20, restaurants are encouraged to apply early as funds are limited. Matching funds are encouraged but not required to apply.

Any questions can be directed to Tim Sink, Chamber president, at 224-2508 or at concordnhchamber.com/resources/concord-restaurant-grant-program.

Please fill out the online application form. Matching funds are encouraged but not required to apply for the Concord Restaurant Grant Program. Approved grants will be paid based on a reimbursement basis. Restaurants must provide invoices as documentation for reimbursement.

Author: Insider Staff

Share This Post On

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Our Newspaper Family Includes:

Copyright 2020 The Concord Insider - Privacy Policy - Copyright