NH Senate Passes SB 11-FN, to Address Emergency Room Boarding Crisis

CONCORD—Today, the New Hampshire Senate passed SB 11-FN-A, relative to mental health services, 16-8. This legislation would appropriate funds to address the New Hampshire mental health Emergency Room boarding crisis by increasing reimbursement rates for Designated Receiving Facilities (DRF) beds from $750 to $1,500 per day and increasing the capacity for DRFs and transitional housing facilities. Prime sponsor Senator Tom Sherman, D-Rye, released the following statement after the vote: “Every day in our state right now forty to seventy people are waiting in emergency rooms and hallways for the mental health services they need. As a physician, I am appalled by this affront to patient care but

NH Senate Passes SB 5-FN, to Expand Access to Mental Health Services and Substance Use Disorder Trea

CONCORD—Today, the New Hampshire Senate passed SB 5-FN-A, relative to making an appropriation relative to Medicaid provider rates for mental health and substance misuse, 24-0. Prime sponsor Senator Cindy Rosenwald, D-Nashua, released the following statement after the vote: “New Hampshire’s Medicaid Expansion program continues to be one of the best tools we have to combat the ongoing opioid and mental health crises in our state. By leveraging federal dollars as part of a 93/7 match to increase reimbursement rates for Medicaid providers for mental health services and substance use disorder treatment, SB 5-FN increases access to these services and ensures that New Hampshire providers can afford

NH Senate Passes SB 2-FN, Increasing Funding for Job Training Programs

CONCORD—Today, the New Hampshire Senate passed SB 2-FN, relative to funding for job training programs in the department of business and economic affairs, 14-10. Prime sponsor Senator Kevin Cavanaugh, D-Manchester, released the following statement after the vote: “We can’t afford for anyone to get left behind in New Hampshire’s evolving job market. Every week there are thousands of job openings in our state due to a gap in training opportunities. This public-private partnership triples the state’s funding for job training programs – without raising taxes – and will help attract, train, retain, and retrain employees, expanding opportunities for the people of New Hampshire and giving businesses

Senator Feltes Introduces SB 105-FN, relative to contributions to inaugural committees

CONCORD—Today, Senator Dan Feltes introduced SB 105-FN, legislation that would restore public confidence and strengthen transparency regarding gubernatorial inaugural committees by limiting contributions and requiring the inaugural treasurer to report individual contributions over a specified amount. Senator Feltes released the following statement after the hearing: “SB 105 includes modest reforms to enhance the transparency and accountability of inaugural committees, which should not be used as a slush fund filled with unlimited special interest contributions. At a minimum, this legislation will help to eliminate a public perception of possible self-dealing. Governors from both parties are

Senator Levesque Introduces SB 7, Secure Modern Accurate Registration (SMART ACT)

CONCORD—Today, State Senator Melanie Levesque introduced the Secure Modern Accurate Registration Technology (“SMART”) Act, legislation that would safeguard New Hampshire’s elections through the implementation of secure and modern voter registration. The legislation would put into effect a process by which eligible Granite Staters who interact with a government agency, such as the Division of Motor Vehicles, are automatically registered to vote through a secure process that protects individuals’ information while saving the state money in labor costs. Local election officials will check the voter registration information before adding new voters to the rolls, maintaining local control. “It’s

Senator Dan Feltes Introduces SB 1, Paid Family and Medical Leave Insurance

CONCORD—Today, Senator Dan Feltes (D-Concord) introduced legislation to establish paid family and medical leave insurance in New Hampshire. Senator Feltes provided the following statement regarding SB 1: “Paid family and medical leave is a critical tool to help New Hampshire attract and retain the workforce of tomorrow, meet the caregiving needs of our aging population, and support substance use disorder recovery efforts. After years of work on this issue, it’s time to finally pass this bipartisan legislation to ensure Granite Staters can maintain financial security when they need to take time away from work to care for themselves or a family member.”

NH Senate President Reacts to Short-Term Deal to Reopen Federal Government

CONCORD—On Friday, January 25th , Senate President Donna Soucy released the following statement in reaction to the announcement that a deal was struck to reopen the federal government: “I’m grateful that a short-term deal to reopen the federal government has been reached, however, the past month has shined a light on the shortcomings in our system. It’s clear now is not the time to rest. We need to be proactive to ensure our federal workers in New Hampshire do not face financial insecurity again because of disagreements in Washington, D.C. Senate Democrats will continue to pursue legislative fixes and continue to encourage Governor Sununu and Attorney General MacDonald to fight back against

Senator Morgan Introduces Legislation to Address DCYF Staffing Shortfalls

CONCORD—Today, during this legislative session’s first Senate Finance Committee hearing, Senator Jon Morgan (D-Brentwood) introduced an Act relative to child protection staffing and making an appropriation therefor. Prior to its introduction in the committee hearing, Senator Morgan offered the following statement: “This legislation is an effort to deliver on one of the most vital responsibilities that government owes to its people- protecting the most vulnerable in our communities, abused and neglected children. Over the past several years, experts, consultants, clients, and employees on the front-line of this struggle have made one thing crystal clear – the dedicated and caring workers at t

Senator Tom Sherman Introduces Legislation to Address the Mental Health Emergency Room Boarding Cris

CONCORD—Today, Senator Tom Sherman (D-Rye) introduced legislation to begin to address New Hampshire’s emergency room mental health crisis. Everyday there are approximately 35 individuals awaiting mental health treatment in New Hampshire emergency rooms. Senator Sherman offered the following statement regarding Senate Bill 11: “This emergency measure will relieve pressure on our mental health system and help get patients the treatment they deserve. Currently, if you enter the emergency room with symptoms of a heart attack you get treated immediately, but if you enter the emergency room with symptoms of severe depression you may wait weeks -- that’s not right. We must address our mental health

Senator Kevin Cavanaugh Introduces Granite State Jobs Act

CONCORD—Today, in an effort to solve the long-standing issue of job training and worker retention in New Hampshire, Senator Kevin Cavanaugh (D-Manchester) introduced Senate Bill 2, An Act relative to funding for job training programs in the department of business and economic affairs, also known as the “Granite State Jobs Act.” Prior to the bill’s introduction in the Senate Finance Committee, Senator Cavanaugh provided the following statement: “I’m excited about introducing this legislation to help New Hampshire’s working families and family businesses. Each week there are thousands of job openings in our state due to a gap in training opportunities. This legislation will help attract, train

Joint Statement from Senate President Soucy & House Speaker Shurtleff Announcing the Exploration

CONCORD—Today, Senate President, Donna Soucy (D-Manchester) and House Speaker, Steve Shurtleff (D-Penacook) released the following joint statement addressing the continued impact of the federal government shutdown on New Hampshire working families: “As the shutdown hits day 31, the House and Senate Leadership are jointly announcing that we have begun exploring emergency legislation that allows the New Hampshire Department of Employment Security to issue unemployment benefits to furloughed federal workers. We are also exploring the possibility of using surplus state funds to supplement the lost funding for critical federal programs. We urge President Trump to work with our federal delegation

FULL REMARKS: Senate Democrats Announce Legislative Priorities

SENATOR SOUCY Good afternoon – thank you all for joining the Senate Democratic Caucus today – in person and on Facebook Live – as we lay out our legislative priorities for 2019. If you’re following online, we invite you to join the conversation using hashtag #Granite Opportunities. My name is Donna Soucy and I’m proud to have been re-elected to serve Senate District 18 and to now serve as Senate President. First, let me congratulate my 23 senate colleagues, both Republicans and Democrats, on their November victories – while we may disagree at times, I look forward to working with everyone as we tackle the important issues facing Granite Staters. My thirteen Democratic colleagues and I all ra

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