May 31, 2019
Contact Name: Sara Persechino
Phone: (603) 271-3479
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 Senate Finance Committee has carefully crafted a budget that provides opportunities for every New Hampshire family and small business. As amended, this budget does more for revenue sharing to support cities and towns across our state at any time in the last ten years, which will help to address growing burdens on local property tax payers—without implementing any new state taxes.”
“In order to move New Hampshire forward, we cannot afford to leave anyone behind. The budget passed by the Senate Finance Committee today truly moves New Hampshire forward,” said Senator Dan Feltes (D-Concord), Senate Majority Leader. “We passed a balanced budget that invests in public education, supports our health care workforce, combats our mental health crisis, supports law enforcement, invests in New Hampshire jobs and small businesses, addresses our housing and homelessness crisis, and makes meaningful investments to protect the safety and wellbeing of New Hampshire children. As amended, this budget invests more than $10 million in funding for DCYF to increase staffing levels and reduce caseloads.”
Senator Jay Kahn (D-Keene) explained, “This budget includes the greatest investment by New Hampshire in public education in almost two decades. We invest over $100 million in new state funding for local public schools, which provides critical property tax relief for our local communities and begins to address our education funding crisis. We owe it to the communities that are struggling to keep their school doors open to provide a meaningful investment in public education. This budget clearly demonstrates that education is a priority and that we are dedicated to investing in the next generation of Granite Staters.”
“Today, the Senate Finance Committee took a major step forward to address the mental and behavioral health needs of our state and I’m thankful for the work of all the members of the committee in dealing with these complex issues,” Senator Cindy Rosenwald (D-Nashua) added. “Across New Hampshire, a workforce shortage is slowing our state’s economic potential, but there is no field where this is felt more strongly than in health care. I’m proud to say that the budget passed by the Senate Finance Committee takes meaningful steps to address the workforce shortage by increasing health care rates and providing critical student loan relief. This budget also addresses our mental health crisis by beginning construction on a new Secure Psychiatric Unit, incorporating portions of SB 11 to address the emergency room boarding crisis, increasing funds for transitional housing, and creating the first ever statewide children’s mobile crisis unit as established in SB 14.”