News

Senate Finance Committee Adopts Budget That Puts Granite State Families First

May 31, 2019 Contact Name: Sara Persechino Phone: (603) 271-3479 Email: Sara.Persechino@leg.state.nh.us CONCORD—Today, the New Hampshire Senate Finance Committee voted 4-2 in support of HB 1 and HB 2 as amended, regarding the state’s operating budget for Fiscal Year 2020-21. Senator Lou D’Allesandro (D-Manchester), Chair of the Senate Finance Committee, stated: “The budget is the most important task advanced by the Senate; this piece of legislation has an impact on every person in this state. Senate Democrats made a pledge to the voters of New Hampshire that we would pass a budget that worked for everyone. Today, the Senate Finance Committee delivered on that promise. Working together, the S

NH Senate Votes in Favor of Campaign Funds for Child Care

May 30, 2019 Contact Name: Sara Persechino Phone: (603) 271-3479 Email: Sara.Persechino@leg.state.nh.us CONCORD—Today, the New Hampshire Senate voted 15-9 in favor of HB 651, allowing the use of campaign funds for child care expenses. In 2017, the Federal Election Commission (FEC) ruled that congressional candidates can use campaign funds for child care; HB 651 is an effort to implement that ruling for state and local candidates in New Hampshire. After the vote, Senate Majority Leader Dan Feltes (D-Concord) released the following statement: “As the father of two young children, I know how difficult it can be to balance parenthood with running for office and serving in office. In New Hampshir

State Senate Passes HB 315 to Pull New Hampshire Out of the Interstate Voter Registration Crosscheck

May 30, 2019 Contact Name: Sara Persechino Phone: (603) 271-3479 Email: Sara.Persechino@leg.state.nh.us CONCORD—Today, the New Hampshire Senate passed HB 315, 14-10, relative to the Interstate Voter Registration Crosscheck Program. Senator Melanie Levesque (D-Nashua), Chair of the Senate Election Law and Municipal Affairs Committee, released the following statement after the vote: “As the first-in-the-nation primary state, with the eyes of the country upon us, ensuring that New Hampshire’s elections are fair and secure could not be more important. Unfortunately, our state is currently relying on a flawed program to maintain accurate voter rolls—the Interstate Crosscheck System, which has als

Senator Watters Applauds Senate Passage of Capital Budget

May 30, 2019 Contact Name: Sara Persechino Phone: (603) 271-3479 Email: Sara.Persechino@leg.state.nh.us CONCORD—Today, the New Hampshire Senate voted 24-0 in support of HB 25-A, New Hampshire’s two-year capital budget. The capital budget, as recommended by the committee, appropriates just under $125 million in general fund bonding, which is within the appropriate limit to sustain New Hampshire’s strong bond rating. The Senate additions include funding for public transit bus and facility matching funds, repairs to state-owned active railroad lines and bridges, matching funds to other railroads, Rye Harbor dredging, rebuilding the access road at Berlin’s Northern New Hampshire Correctional Fa

New Hampshire Senate Overrides Governor’s Veto, Repeals Death Penalty

May 30, 2019 Contact Name: Sara Persechino Phone: (603) 271-3479 Email: Sara.Persechino@leg.state.nh.us CONCORD—Today the New Hampshire Senate voted 16-8 to override Governor Sununu’s veto of HB 455, effectively repealing the death penalty in New Hampshire. Today’s vote makes New Hampshire the 21st state to abolish capital punishment. Senate President Donna Soucy and Senate Judiciary Chair Martha Hennessey released the following statements after the vote: “The death penalty has been an issue every New Hampshire legislator has grappled with over many years. It has been my privilege to speak with my constituents and fellow lawmakers about this important issue and it was a privilege today to jo

Senate Democrats Applaud Decision to Join PFAS Lawsuit

May 29, 2019 Contact Name: Sara Persechino Phone: (603) 271-3479 Email: Sara.Persechino@leg.state.nh.us CONCORD—Today the Chairs of the Senate Energy and Health and Human Services Committees, Senator Martha Fuller Clark and Senator Tom Sherman respectively, released the following statement after Governor Chris Sununu announced that New Hampshire would be entering into lawsuits against the makers of PFAS chemicals for drinking water contamination in the state. Both Senate Democrats represent districts on the Seacoast that have been ground zero in the fight against PFAS contamination and have previously met with the Mayor and City Manager of Portsmouth urging them to take legal action similar

Senator Feltes Applauds House on Vote to Expand Access to Solar Savings

May 23, 2019 Contacts: Sara Persechino Phone: (603) 271-3479 Email: Sara.Persechino@leg.state.nh.us CONCORD, NH—Today, the New Hampshire House of Representatives voted 219-113 in support of SB 165, relative to net energy metering by low-moderate income community solar projects. Prime sponsor Senator Dan Feltes (D-Concord) released the following statement after the vote: “It’s time to build an economy that works for everyone and combats climate change. That’s why this effort to expand access to solar savings is so critical. SB 165 builds on bipartisan legislation passed two years ago to establish community solar projects in New Hampshire and will make sure everyone has access to the benefits

NH Senate Passes HB 706, to Establish an Independent Redistricting Commission

May 23, 2019 Contact Name: Sara Persechino Phone: (603) 271-3479 Email: Sara.Persechino@leg.state.nh.us CONCORD—Today, the New Hampshire Senate passed HB 706-FN-A, establishing an independent redistricting commission. “I appreciate the bipartisan compromise reached on this critical legislation, which removes politics from the process of drawing New Hampshire’s legislative districts, and I applaud today’s bipartisan Senate vote in favor of HB 706,” said Senator Melanie Levesque (D-Nashua), chair of the Senate Election Law and Municipal Affairs Committee. Senator Shannon Chandley (D-Amherst), who co-sponsored HB 706 and introduced a similar Senate bill, added: “The will of voters is easily dis

Senate Adopts Bipartisan Biomass Energy Initiative to Preserve Jobs and Healthy Forests

May 23, 2019 Contact Name: Sara Persechino and Robert Collins Phone: (603) 271-3479 – (603) 271-7587 Email: Sara.Persechino@leg.state.nh.us – Robert.Collins@leg.state.nh.us Senate Adopts Bipartisan Biomass Energy Initiative to Preserve Jobs and Healthy Forests— Today the New Hampshire Senate passed HB 183. Current lawsuits regarding the 2018 passage of SB 365 threaten approximately a thousand jobs and an estimated $254 million dollars of annual economic benefit to the State. As amended, HB 183 allows biomass plants to get back on-line, providing 100 megawatts of energy to the state’s grid, assisting the forestry industry with a low-grade market for wood chips, and putting people back to work

Senate Effort to Restore Voting Rights, SB 67, Passes NH House of Representatives

May 23, 2019 Contact Name: Sara Persechino Phone: (603) 271-3479 Email: Sara.Persechino@leg.state.nh.us CONCORD—Today, the New Hampshire House of Representatives passed SB 67, 215-138. SB 67 is designed to address concerns with HB 1264, which was enacted in 2018 and changed the definition of “residency” in New Hampshire to omit the phrase “for the indefinite future” and, in so doing, aimed to link this new “residency” standard to the “domicile” standard that is used to determine voter eligibility under New Hampshire law. Prime sponsor Senator Melanie Levesque (D-Nashua) released the following statement after the vote: “In today’s mobile society, more students attend college out-of-state and

NH Senate Votes to Enact Gun Violence Prevention Legislation

May 23, 2019 Contact Name: Sara Persechino Phone: (603) 271-3479 Email: Sara.Persechino@leg.state.nh.us CONCORD— Today, the New Hampshire Senate passed three efforts aimed at increasing gun violence prevention efforts in the state. The Senate voted: 13-10 in support of HB 109-FN, requiring background checks for commercial firearms sales; 13-10 in support of HB 514-FN, imposing a waiting period between the purchase and delivery of a firearm; and 13-10 in support of HB 564, relative to possession of firearms on school property. HB 109 creates a universal background check that requires all transfers of firearm ownership be subject to a criminal background check, and closes the Charleston loopho

Senator Dietsch Proposes Closing FICA Loophole, Raising $200 Million to Reduce Property Taxes

May 16, 2019 Contact Name: Sara Persechino Phone: (603) 271-3479 Email: Sara.Persechino@leg.state.nh.us CONCORD—Today, New Hampshire Senator Jeanne Dietsch (D-Peterborough), who serves on the Senate Ways and Means Committee as well as the Education and Workforce Development Committee, submitted an amendment to HB 198 that would start a payroll deduction on high earners in order to reduce the Statewide Education Property Tax paid through local property taxes and fund other critical needs. The deduction would kick in at the point that the federal government stops collecting Social Security taxes. HB 198 and Senator Dietsch’s amendment, 2019-2031s, will be heard in the Senate Finance Committee

Senator Sherman Applauds SB 11, Mental Health Funding Bill, Being Signed into Law

May 21, 2019 Contact Name: Sara Persechino Phone: (603) 271-3479 Email: Sara.Persechino@leg.state.nh.us CONCORD—Today, Governor Chris Sununu signed into law SB 11-FN, Senator Tom Sherman’s bill to swiftly address the emergency room boarding crisis in our state. SB 11-FN uses surplus funds to increase reimbursement rates for Designated Receiving Facilities (DRF) beds, increase the capacity for DRFs and transitional housing facilities, and fund an additional mobile crisis team. “SB 11-FN is a major step forward in New Hampshire’s efforts to rebuild our mental health system and ensure that our citizens have access to the mental health care they need, when they need it, and in facilities designe

Senate President Sends SB 11, Mental Health Funding Bill, to Governor Sununu

May 16, 2019 Contact Name: Sara Persechino Phone: (603) 271-3479 Email: Sara.Persechino@leg.state.nh.us CONCORD—Today, Senate President Donna Soucy signed SB 11-FN, relative to mental health services and making appropriations therefor, which next goes to Governor Sununu. This legislation addresses the emergency room boarding crisis in our state by funding increased reimbursement rates for Designated Receiving Facilities (DRF) beds and increasing the capacity for DRFs and transitional housing facilities. “New Hampshire used to be a leader when it comes to mental health; unfortunately, our system has steadily eroded as the demand for services has outpaced our capacity to provide them. We can’t

NH Senators Urge Gov. Sununu to Direct AG to Join Lawsuit to Hold Big Pharma Accountable

May 15, 2019 Contact Name: Sara Persechino Phone: (603) 271-3479 Email: Sara.Persechino@leg.state.nh.us CONCORD—Today, Senate Health and Human Services Chair Tom Sherman and Senator Cindy Rosenwald called on Governor Chris Sununu and Attorney General Gordon MacDonald to join the bipartisan lawsuit filed by 44 other states to stop pharmaceutical companies from inflating the prices of generic prescription drugs. “The increasing cost of prescription drugs is one of the most significant challenges facing New Hampshire families, and the fact that these pharmaceutical companies may have intentionally fixed these prices to feed their bottom line is appalling,” said Senators Sherman and Rosenwald. “

Senator Sherman Commends Hampton Falls Students on HB 280 Passage, Success in Their Second Attempt t

May 15, 2019 Contact Name: Sara Persechino Phone: (603) 271-3479 Email: Sara.Persechino@leg.state.nh.us CONCORD—Today, the New Hampshire Senate passed HB 280, 24-0, designating the red-tailed hawk as the state raptor. Following the vote, Senator Sherman (D-Rye) released the following press statement: “Today’s passage of HB 280 in the Senate is a victory for the eighth-grade students of Lincoln Akerman School. I commend these students and their teacher, Jim Cutting, for their tenacity and persistence in advancing legislation to designate the red-tailed hawk as the state raptor and succeeding in their second try to “Live Free & Fly.” These students are an inspiration to the Hampton Falls commu

Senate President Donna Soucy Responds to Governor Vetoing Paid Family & Medical Leave

May 9, 2019 Contact Name: Sara Persechino Phone: (603) 271-3479 Email: Sara.Persechino@leg.state.nh. CONCORD—Today, Governor Sununu vetoed SB 1, relative to family and medical leave. Following the veto, Senate President Donna Soucy (D-Manchester) released the following statement. “I am deeply disappointed with the governor’s decision to veto paid family and medical leave, a program the vast majority of Granite Staters support because it’s good for families and it’s good for businesses,” said Senate President Donna Soucy. “As the session proceeds, I hope my fellow legislators will continue listening to our constituents and fellow citizens who are urging lawmakers to adopt this critical tool s

Senate Majority Leader Responds to Governor Sununu Blocking Paid Leave in NH

May 9, 2019 Contact Name: Sara Persechino Phone: (603) 271-3479 Email: Sara.Persechino@leg.state.nh.us CONCORD—Today, Governor Sununu vetoed SB 1, a bipartisan bill that establishes a public-private partnership for paid family and medical leave in New Hampshire. Following the veto, Senate Majority Leader Dan Feltes (D-Concord), prime sponsor of SB 1, released the following statement. “This is why people don’t like politics. Politicians—regardless of their last name or where they come from—should actually work for the people, should keep their campaign promises, and should tell the truth. Governor Sununu has done none of that on paid family and medical leave, and he’s left working families an

Senator Kahn Applauds House Passage of SB 12, the Graduate Retention Incentive Partnership

May 8, 2019 Contact Name: Sara Persechino Phone: (603) 271-3479 Email: Sara.Persechino@leg.state.nh.us CONCORD—Today, the New Hampshire House of Representatives voted 201-134 in favor of SB 12-FN-A, establishing the New Hampshire college graduate retention incentive partnership program and making an appropriation therefor. Prime sponsor Senator Jay Kahn (D-Keene) released the following statement after the vote: “Today’s House vote in favor of SB 12 is an important signal that New Hampshire is committed to recruiting and retaining the workforce of tomorrow. The College Graduate Retention Incentive Partnership (GRIP) is an on-switch to encourage New Hampshire college students to include in-sta

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

May 8, 2018 Contact Name: Sara Persechino Phone: (603) 271-3479 Email: Sara.Persechino@leg.state.nh.us CONCORD—Today, the New Hampshire House of Representatives passed SB 5-FN-A, relative to making an appropriation relative to Medicaid provider rates for mental health and substance misuse, 207-130. The Senate passed SB 5 unanimously in February. 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. Medicaid is an important part of New Hampshire’s 10-Year Mental Health Plan, but we need to rais

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