PLYMOUTH, N.H. (AP) — New Hampshire Electric Cooperative and Liberty Utilities say customers will see their bills decrease, effective May 1.

The change is the result of a decrease in the power rate.

For co-op customers, it comes out to about $23.67 less per month for a residential member using 500 kilowatts per month. For a customer using 1,000 kilowatts per month, it's about $47.33.

At Liberty, the reduction will mean a $46 decrease per month for an average residential customer.

The reductions signal an end to a winter period that saw residential bills increase last fall. The utilities say driving these wide price swings are seasonal variations in the price of natural gas, used to generate approximately half of the electricity produced in New England.


Christie plans two-day swing through NH

NEWARK, N.J.  — New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is planning a two-day swing through the early-voting state of New Hampshire next month.

The potential Republican presidential contender will be making the trip on April 14-15.

A spokeswoman for his political action committee says Christie is planning to meet with community leaders while he's in town. She says they'll discuss important issues facing the country, including entitlement reform.

Christie is then set to return to the state for the New Hampshire Republican Party's "First-in-the-Nation Leadership Summit" on April 17.

New Hampshire is seen as an especially important state for Christie. Voters there tend to be more receptive to moderate candidates than other early states.

He's expected to kick off a series of town hall meetings there later this year.


 'Live Free and Host Responsibly' kicks off

CONCORD, N.H.  — The New Hampshire Liquor Commission has teamed up with a spirits and wine company to create "Live Free and Host Responsibly," to address alcohol consumption.

The commission has created a web page offering tips for responsible serving and hosting, videos with cocktail and mocktail recipes that emphasize responsible consumption, and guides for lounge and restaurant owners.

The commission has partnered with Brown-Forman to create the yearlong campaign launched Monday.

The web page will showcase quarterly videos with Tim Laird of Brown-Forman with instructions on how to make seasonal mocktails and cocktails. Laird is an authority on wines and spirits with more than 20 years of experience in the hospitality industry.


Cops: Shoppers 'bagged' about valuables

NASHUA, N.H. — Police in Nashua are helping people who aren't watching out for their purses and wallets while shopping.

They conducted a crime prevention campaign over the weekend called "You've Been Bagged," by the police.

The department partnered with several supermarkets recently to raise awareness for protecting personal property. The officers made contact with over 30 people who left their items unattended while shopping. They gave them tips on securing their valuables.

Police say it only takes seconds for someone to steal a purse or wallet, and most times, the thief is very nonchalant and will mix in with a crowd, rather than the typical misconception that they grab the item and run.


Plans to renovate bridge to be discussed

CHARLESTOWN, N.H.  — A Connecticut River bridge connecting Charlestown, New Hampshire, and Springfield, Vermont, will be closed for five days this summer, followed by up to two months of work with one-lane traffic.

The deck on the Route 11 Bridge will be redone. Lane closures affect daytime hours; the bridge will be open to full traffic during non-working hours.

Alternative routes during the five-day closure include the Church Street Bridge in Walpole and the Route 12 and 103 Bridge in Claremont.

The New Hampshire Department of Transportation is planning a presentation about the work to be done on Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. as part of the Charlestown Selectboard's regular meeting.


Airport loses $750K due to project delays

LEBANON, N.H. — The Lebanon Municipal Airport has missed out on getting $750,000 for improvements, after the city failed to have a plan in place.

The airport receives $1 million each year from the federal Essential Air Service Program when at least 10,000 people depart from it. The $750,000 is what's left of Lebanon's 2012 allocation.

If the airport doesn't spend that money within three years, it's dispersed to other airports in the region.

The city proposed a $2.6 million project to repair pavement and improve drainage in a 1,500-foot section of runway in October. The FAA rejected the proposal because the city didn't address safety issues associated with the project. The FAA also rejected the city's request for an extension to redesign a project.

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