Press Releases

 

Tuesday
Jan272015

NHDP - ICYMI: Monitor Editorial: Cut to business taxes will only hurt business in NH 

Key Point: "Businesses need good roads and bridges and other infrastructure. To attract employees, they need communities with good schools, parks and other amenities. To the extent lower tax revenue leads to a reduction in public services and state investments in infrastructure and education it will harm the business climate. Business taxes are well down the list of a company’s concerns when locating and in New Hampshire, despite the nominally high rate of the BPT, the overall business tax rate isn’t all that bad. The Tax Foundation ranked New Hampshire seventh in attractiveness to business."

Click here for the full Concord Monitor editorial or see excerpt below.

Haven’t we already heard this story about the wondrous Republican perpetual motion machine? In this latest version, it’s the promise that cutting two of the state’s major sources of revenue, the business profits tax and business enterprise tax, will increase revenue. There’s no reason to believe that’s true or, for that matter, any reason to believe that reducing business taxes will attract and retain businesses. There is, however, good reason to believe that making up for the lost revenue will require even deeper cuts to New Hampshire’s already frugal budget. Those cuts will not just hurt the needy, but make the state less, rather than more, attractive to young, well-educated workers and the businesses seeking to hire them. 

That’s why lawmakers should roundly reject Senate Bills 1 and 2.

In October, after four years of research, testimony and deliberation, the legislatively created New Hampshire Commission to Study Business Taxes issued a report that repeatedly stated that the state’s 8.5 percent business profits tax and 0.725 percent business enterprise tax did not materially affect the state’s ability to compete for businesses. The 12-member commission also found “no basis for concluding that any effect of attracting new businesses or business expansion as a result of a rate reduction would generate additional tax revenue sufficient to compensate for the revenue loss. . . .” Curiously, Sen. Jeb Bradley, one of the sponsors of both tax cut bills, was a member of the commission and now argues in favor of the cuts for the very reasons the commission deemed flawed.

Assuming, as we do, that the tax cuts will shrink state revenue, they could backfire. Businesses need good roads and bridges and other infrastructure. To attract employees, they need communities with good schools, parks and other amenities. To the extent lower tax revenue leads to a reduction in public services and state investments in infrastructure and education it will harm the business climate. 

Business taxes are well down the list of a company’s concerns when locating and in New Hampshire, despite the nominally high rate of the BPT, the overall business tax rate isn’t all that bad. The Tax Foundation ranked New Hampshire seventh in attractiveness to business. What does hurt business is the state’s high property taxes. That’s the single largest tax most businesses pay – equal to 45 cents on the tax dollar, according to one study, and 52 cents on the tax dollar in another. If communities have to offset state spending cuts with property tax increases, businesses lose.

In testimony opposing SB1 and SB2, Jeffrey McLynch, executive director of the New Hampshire Fiscal Policy Institute, pointed out that a loss to the state treasury of $78 million amounts to more than the combined budget of the Department of Resources and Economic Development and Environmental Services and nearly equals the state’s support for its community college system. It’s not a sum that can be offset with a little belt-tightening here and there. [...]

Click here for the full Concord Monitor editorial. 

Tuesday
Jan272015

Tuesday, January 27 in the NH House 

Please note that Tuesday’s House schedule has been moved to Wednesday.

See below

 

WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 28 in the NH House

 

CHILDREN AND FAMILY LAW, Room 206, LOB

10:00 a.m. HB 305, relative to assessment of and discharge planning for minors in the juvenile court

system.

11:00 a.m. HB 307, relative to the membership and duties of the legislative youth advisory council.

1:15 p.m. HB 380, relative to investigations of child day care agencies.

2:00 p.m. HB 168, relative to grounds for divorce for persons with minor children.

Executive session on pending legislation may follow.

 

COMMERCE AND CONSUMER AFFAIRS, Room 302, LOB

10:00 a.m. HB 308, relative to the supervision of a real estate office and the duties of a facilitator under

the real estate practice act.

10:30 a.m. HB 358, relative to driver’s license information obtained by pawnbrokers and secondhand

dealers.

11:00 a.m. HB 230, relative to penalties for failure to timely discharge a mortgage.

1:15 p.m. HB 356, exempting persons using private virtual currencies for internet commerce from the

licensing requirements for money transmitters.

 

CRIMINAL JUSTICE AND PUBLIC SAFETY, Room 204, LOB

10:00 a.m. HB 214-FN, relative to circumstances under which a police officer’s certification may be revoked.

11:00 a.m. HB 245, establishing a committee to study state and county departments of corrections.

1:00 p.m. HB 367-FN, redefining simple assault.

1:45 p.m. HB 240, prohibiting law enforcement agencies from using a drone to collect evidence.

2:30 p.m. HB 287, allowing citizens to record by audio or video a traffic stop by law enforcement officers.

Executive session on pending legislation may follow.

 

EDUCATION, Room 207, LOB

10:00 a.m. HB 301, allowing a parent to elect not to include their child in the unique pupil identification

system or other information database maintained by the department of education.

10:45 a.m. HB 253, relative to the requirements for filing a charter school application.

11:30 a.m. HB 346, relative to criminal history records checks for school employees and volunteers.

1:00 p.m. HB 242, relative to the statewide improvement and assessment program.

1:30 p.m. HB 323, relative to the administration of the statewide assessment program.

2:15 p.m. HB 283, requiring school districts to establish a policy permitting a pupil’s parent or legal

guardian to observe his or her classes.

3:00 p.m. HB 303, relative to statewide assessment standards and relative to parental consent for

psychological services to students.

 

ELECTION LAW, Room 308, LOB

10:00 a.m. CACR 4, Relating to the right to vote. Providing that 17-year olds who will be eligible to vote

in the general election be permitted to vote in the election’s primary election.

10:30 a.m. HB 328, relative to delivery of absentee ballots.

10:45 a.m. HB 340, relative to appointing undeclared voters as inspectors of election.

11:00 a.m. HB 355, relative to pre-election tests of ballot counting devices.

11:15 a.m. HB 112, relative to domicile for voting purposes.

1:00 p.m. HB 320, relative to removal of certain campaign materials at the polling place.

1:15 p.m. HB 312, relative to registration of voters.

1:30 p.m. HB 304, establishing a committee to study public access to political campaign information.

1:45 p.m. HB 228, relative to showing or specially marking a ballot.137 23 JANUARY 2015 HOUSE RECORD

2:30 p.m. Executive session on HB 135, relative to qualifications of assistant election officials, HB 173,

relative to instruction on ballots, HB 183, relative to voter registration forms, and HB 185,

authorizing straight ticket voting.

 

ENVIRONMENT AND AGRICULTURE, Room 303, LOB

10:00 a.m. HB 372, relative to certain private employers under workers’ compensation.

11:00 a.m. HB 373, establishing the red-tailed hawk as the New Hampshire state raptor.

1:00 p.m. Subcommittee work session on HB 200, defining “farm stand.”

EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENTS AND ADMINISTRATION, Room 306, LOB

10:00 a.m. HB 113, designating the mastodon as the official state fossil.

11:00 a.m. HB 216-FN, relative to recovery of certain investigatory costs by regulatory boards and commissions.

1:00 p.m. HB 279, establishing a commission to study the economic impact of the arts and culture in New

Hampshire.

1:45 p.m. HB 139-FN, relative to an emergency exception under the New Hampshire retirement system

for certain part-time employment.

2:15 p.m. HB 182, establishing a committee to study alternative public employee retirement plans.

2:30 p.m. Executive session on HB 119, establishing the John G. Winant Memorial Commission.

 

FINANCE, Rooms 210-211, LOB

10:00 a.m. Informational meeting: Commissioner John Beardmore, Department of Revenue: Taxes.

1:00 p.m. HB 176-FN-A-L, relative to towns affected by the Merrimack River flood control compact and

the Connecticut River flood control compact and making an appropriation therefor.

1:45 p.m. HB 261, relative to disbursements of school building aid grant payments.

2:30 p.m. HB 376-FN-A, appropriating funds to the department of environmental services for the purpose

of funding eligible and completed drinking water, wastewater, and landfill closure projects under

the state aid grant program.

 

FINANCE – (DIVISION III), Rooms 210-211

11:00 a.m. Informational meeting: Assistant Commissioner Jeffrey Meyers, Director of Intergovernmental

Affairs, Department of Health and Human Services: Medicaid Transformation Waiver.

 

HEALTH, HUMAN SERVICES AND ELDERLY AFFAIRS, Room 205, LOB

9:15 a.m. Subcommittee work session on HB 188, allowing the department of health and human services

to share certain Medicaid enhancement tax information with the Centers for Medicare and

Medicaid Services.

10:15 a.m. HB 330, establishing an oversight commission for medical cost transparency.

11:00 a.m. HB 202, repealing the authority for the dispensing of prescription drugs in certain clinics.

1:15 p.m. HB 232, relative to training in suicide risk assessment, treatment, and management.

2:15 p.m. HB 219-FN, relative to the use of electronic benefit transfer (EBT) cards.

Executive session on pending legislation may follow.

 

JUDICIARY, Room 208, LOB

10:00 a.m. HB 290, relative to the acceptance of risk in outdoor recreational activities.

11:00 a.m. HB 292, expanding the good Samaritan law to engineers and architects.

1:00 p.m. HB 315, relative to termination of tenancy.

1:45 p.m. HB 309, permitting landlords to remove tenants’ property in certain circumstances.

2:30 p.m. HB 269, allowing a landlord to collect first and last month’s rent in addition to a security deposit.

Executive session on pending legislation may follow.

 

LABOR, INDUSTRIAL AND REHABILITATIVE SERVICES, Room 307, LOB

10:15 a.m. HB 324, relative to membership in a union.

11:00 a.m. HB 267-FN, requiring employers to verify an employee’s eligibility to work in the United States.

1:00 p.m. HB 347, relative to payment of wages of certain hourly school district employees.

1:30 p.m. HB 365, prohibiting an employer from using credit history in employment decisions.

2:30 p.m. HB 361, relative to the definition of “employee.”

 

MUNICIPAL AND COUNTY GOVERNMENT, Room 301, LOB

10:00 a.m. HB 192, relative to the valuation of utility property.

10:20 a.m. HB 193, relative to utility assessments for the use of village district roads.

10:40 a.m. HB 186, enabling the department of environmental services and the town of New Ipswich to

negotiate an agreement regarding the encroachment of the town cemetery on state land.

11:00 a.m. HB 275, relative to the encroachment of a town cemetery on state-owned land.23 JANUARY 2015 HOUSE RECORD 138

1:00 p.m. HB 235, relative to obstruction of traffic on certain highways.

1:20 p.m. HB 189, relative to authorization of payments by the treasurer from the Rockingham county

delegation budget.

1:45 p.m. HB 191, relative to projects which are privately financed in energy efficiency and clean energy

districts.

 

PUBLIC WORKS AND HIGHWAYS, Room 201, LOB

10:15 a.m. HB 384, establishing a committee to study the feasibility of privatizing the New Hampshire

toll system.

11:00 a.m. HB 321, establishing a committee to study improvements to the Elizabeth Meader Hanson site

in Dover.

Executive session to follow on HB 115, repealing the allocation of gross appropriations from

the highway fund in the state budget and HB 144, establishing a commission to study the

long-term viability of the New Hampshire state port authority.

 

RESOURCES, RECREATION AND DEVELOPMENT, Room 305, LOB

10:30 a.m. HB 201, relative to the acquisition of property rights at Back Lake dam in the town of Pittsburg,

Lake Armington dam in the town of Piermont, Cass Pond dam in the town of Epsom, and

Chesham Pond dam in the town of Harrisville by the department of environmental services.

11:00 a.m. HB 254, relative to exceptions to restrictions on boating.

11:30 a.m. Full committee work session on HB 174, establishing a committee to study the name and

structure of the department of resources and economic development, HB 111, relative to land

retained by the state and HB 167, directing the commissioners of the department of resources

and economic development and the department of environmental services to develop a business

development plan to attract certain businesses to New Hampshire.

1:15 p.m. HB 259, relative to the reporting date of the economic development strategy and plan.

1:45 p.m. HB 272, designating the Ham Branch watershed in Easton as a protected river and exempting

the Ham Branch watershed from the comprehensive shoreland protection act.

Executive session on pending legislation may follow.

 

SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY AND ENERGY, Representatives Hall

10:00 a.m. HB 143, relative to electric renewable energy classes.

11:15 a.m. HB 234, relative to renewable portfolio standards.

Room 304, LOB

12:45 p.m. Executive session on HB 132-L, relative to time-based rates for electric service.

1:00 p.m. Continued committee briefings.

 

TRANSPORTATION, Room 203, LOB

10:00 a.m. HB 387-FN, relative to motor vehicle inspections.

10:30 a.m. HB 388-FN-A, establishing university number plates.

11:00 a.m. HB 357, relative to notice of change of name or address on a driver’s license.

11:30 a.m. HB 241-FN, prohibiting driving while holding an animal in the driver’s seat.

1:00 p.m. HB 310, relative to reporting the destruction of motor vehicles.

1:30 p.m. HB 385-FN, relative to special motorcycle number plates for disabled veterans.

2:00 p.m. HB 260, relative to the definition of antique motor vehicle or motorcycle.

2:30 p.m. or immediately following HB 260, Executive session on HB 105, relative to special number plates

for members of the Civil Air Patrol, HB 121, making a technical correction to the negligent driving

statute, HB 123, relative to walking disability placards, HB 134, establishing a committee

to study the use of motorized scooter chairs on roadways and sidewalks, and HB 156, relative to

the 70 mile per hour speed limit on a portion of I-93.

 

WAYS AND MEANS, Room 202, LOB

10:00 a.m. HB 258-FN-L, relative to fees for preparing motor vehicle registration documents.

10:30 a.m. HB 278, relative to town clerk fees for fill and dredge permit applications.

11:00 a.m. HB 359, allowing municipalities in Carroll county to offer property tax exemptions to foster

commercial and industrial construction.

11:30 a.m. CACR 1, Relating to taxation. Providing that a 3/5 vote is required to pass legislation imposing

new or increased taxes or license fees, or to authorize the issuance of state bonds and providing

that the general court shall appropriate funds for payment of interest and installments of

principal of all state bonds.

1:00 p.m. HB 314, establishing a commission to study the charitable status of certain nonprofit organizations

for purposes of state and local taxation.

1:30 p.m. HB 319, establishing a committee to study effects of making changes to certain New Hampshire

tax laws.139 23 JANUARY 2015 HOUSE RECORD

2:00 p.m. HB 350, establishing a commission to study the impacts of the property tax on New Hampshire’s

residents, businesses, municipalities, and the economy.

Tuesday
Jan272015

Women's Defense League of NH - SB 116 is a Pro-Choice, Pro-Women's Rights Bill

The Women's Defense League of New Hampshire  announces its support of SB 116 - AN ACT repealing the license requirement for carrying a concealed pistol or revolver.  We will be testifying in Concord in support of this bill on Thursday, January 29th at 1PM when the Senate Judiciary Committee holds a public hearing on it.

This common sense legislation allows women the choice to be licensed or not and makes clear that New Hampshire guarantees women their fundamental right of self-defense.  The majority of women gun owners in New Hampshire carry concealed as opposed to open carry.  This bill enables women who are legally able to own firearms the right to practice concealed carry without the impediment of obtaining a license.

Because SB 116 offers women the choice of licensure or not, it is truly a Pro-Choice, Pro-Women's Rights bill.  

The League thanks  Senate Majority Leader Jeb Bradley for his clearly demonstrated support of women's rights issues here in New Hampshire in bringing forth this important legislation.

Tuesday
Jan272015

NH DHHS - Count of Homeless in State to Take Place on January 28th 

On Wednesday, January 28, 2015, a count will be conducted to identify

homeless people in New Hampshire. The New Hampshire Department of Health

and Human Services’ Bureau of Homeless and Housing Services (BBHS),

together with service providers who serve homeless individuals and

families, will identify the number of sheltered and unsheltered persons

within a 24-hour period. This is a combined effort between the three local

homeless Continuums of Care (Nashua, Manchester and the “Balance of State”)

that BHHS coordinates with the NH Coalition to End Homelessness.



This count is a snapshot of how many people are experiencing homelessness

on any given day in New Hampshire. It is based on information reported

from city/town welfare offices, homeless shelters, hospitals, hotels,

police departments, faith based organizations, outreach workers, 2-1-1 Call

Center, and other organizations serving people experiencing homelessness in

the State.



In January of 2014, New Hampshire reported 2,210 homeless individuals

across the State. Of that number, 1,241 were sheltered, 394 were

unsheltered, and 575 individuals were doubled up (temporarily residing with

family or friends). The total of 2,210 includes 358 families.



An accurate unduplicated count is required by the US Department of Housing

and Urban Development and is data essential in obtaining funds that

directly benefit individuals and families experiencing homelessness or at

risk of becoming homeless in the State.


Tuesday
Jan272015

Josiah Bartlett Center - Lessons from Saturn and Pension Reform Rulings 

Weekly Update from the
Josiah Bartlett Center

Keeping you up to date on our latest research
on the issues impacting New Hampshire
 

Politicians often seem like they are from another planet but today I think a few people in Concord could learn a lot from Saturn. Politicians on both sides of the political spectrum are easily tempted to come up with pretend solutions that aren’t focused on the real problem but serve their own political purposes. The more complex a problem is, the greater the political temptation can be. 

It is no secret that the greatest challenge facing New Hampshire’s future is economic development. A once proud and thriving state now languishes in the doldrums of economic stagnation. Oddly, politicians familiar with the problem nonetheless can’t see how it might affect other issues they fret over
Click here to keep reading.
 


Last week the New Hampshire Supreme Court issued a ruling in the case of American Federation of Teachers –New Hampshire et al v State of New Hampshire, which upheld pension reforms made in 2007 and 2008.

This suit, brought in 2009 by most of the state’s public sector unions, was against two particular changes made to the system. The first dealt with changing the definition of ‘earnable compensation’, by removing ‘other compensation’. In effect, it meant that special duty pay, for example, could not be used in calculating the pension payout. The second dealt with the method of funding cost of living adjustments (COLAs), specifically the move of $250 million from the Special Account into the rest of the trust fund and the elimination of annual COLAs. Both were efforts to shore up the financial stability of the New Hampshire Retirement System (NHRS). Click here to keep reading