Business Notes

Wakefield: The Pine River Steakhouse, a local restaurant, has been charged with serving drinks to two drunk men who killed themselves and four other people in a 100 mph crash a short time later. The restaurant is charged with negligence in two felony indictments, each punishable by a fine of up to $100,000, for serving drinks to Casey Davis, 24, and Aaron Parent, 26, both of Wakefield. They left and, with Davis behind the wheel, were driving a Lincoln Continental at more than 100 mph when it collided head-on with a loaded minivan on Route 16 on Sept. 30, 2001.

Washington, D.C.: Rep. Jeb Bradley, R-N.H., has been named chair of the Tax, Finance and Exports subcommittee of the House Small Business Committee. The panel has jurisdiction over tax policy and its impact on small business, general finance issues, export promotion and trade policy oversight.

Concord: The Retail Merchants Association of New Hampshire is accepting nominations for its annual Retail Summit Awards, which recognize New Hampshire retailers for excellence in business practices, customer service, growth and community involvement. Winners will be honored at a April 19 luncheon held in conjunction with the New Hampshire Retail Summit in Manchester. Entry forms are now available through the association’s Web site,, or by calling 225-9748. Deadline for nominations is March 21.

Ossipee: The town of Ossipee has been selected as the newest Main Street community in New Hampshire by the New Hampshire Main Street Center. The center provides each Main Street community with more than $60,000 worth of technical assistance and training over their first five years, covering organizational development, fund-raising, marketing, business recruitment, adaptive reuse of older buildings, and other specialized training.

Concord: The state Public Utilities Commission has approved a 5.1 percent hike in Public Service of New Hampshire’s energy rate. The 6.49 cent-per-kilowatt-hour hike is the second rate increase imposed on PSNH customers in four months. The rate reflects the current price of fuel commodities, particularly natural gas and oil, which PSNH purchases to produce electricity.

Concord: The first grants in the Workforce Development Training Fund, a new employer-based worker training program, have been awarded to four New Hampshire businesses: Millipore Corp, Jaffrey; Mt. Sunapee Resort, Newbury; Compass Systems & Programming, Exeter; and New Hampshire Ball Bearings’ Astro Division in Laconia. Under the program, companies can request matching funds of up to $7,500 for training full-time employees. The Workforce Opportunity Council awards the four grants.

Williamsport, Pa.: Liberty Mutual Insurance Co. is moving many of its operations in Williamsport to Portsmouth, N.H., and Gainesville, Ga. The company said it decided to consolidate its underwriting and policy production operations in a move that affects 330 employees in Williamsport.

Merrimack: Charles Staab, longtime Pennichuck Corp. chief financial officer, has chosen to retire and the company has hired his replacement. Staab, who worked at Pennichuck Corp. for 22 years, has been replaced by William Patterson, who has more than more than 25 years of experience in the water and utility industries, as Staab’s replacement.

Concord: The New Hampshire Timberland Owners Association and the Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests have teamed up for a study of regional wood flow and supply in the North Country. The study is being conducted in the wake of growing concern among elected officials and others over over-harvesting of timber in the region.

Portsmouth: The Pease Development Authority is reportedly making a serious bid to attract EADS North America, a subsidiary of the European Aeronautic Defence and Space Company, to Pease International Tradeport, according to the Portsmouth Herald. EADS has begun the selection process for a commercial engineering center to support the European-manufactured Airbus aircraft line as the company attempts to penetrate the North American commercial air manufacturing market.

Andover, Mass.: Mark Aslett has been named the new chief executive officer of Enterasys Networks Inc., replacing William O’Brien, who becomes executive chairman of the firm. The company – the largest spin-off of the former Cabletron Systems — did not immediately specify a reason for the change. Aslett, 36, previously was executive vice president of marketing at Marconi Networks, and before that a partner in Marconi’s venture capital arm. O’Brien, 60, became CEO of Enterasys in April of 2002.

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