From The Office of Governor John Lynch
CONCORD - Gov. John Lynch today asked the House Finance Committee to support legislation that would increase the number of New Hampshire state troopers by seven.
"New Hampshire's increasing population and an increasing number of visitors put new demands on the New Hampshire State Police. But in recent years, we have seen a reduction in the number of troopers. That's not safe for our citizens, our visitors or our troopers. It is time we begin reversing this dangerous trend, "Gov. Lynch wrote in a letter to the committee.
The legislation, SB 294, would allow the State Police to add seven troopers. The Senate has already passed the bill.
New Hampshire currently has 287 authorized trooper positions. In contrast, Vermont, with half of the population, has 328 troopers, and Maine, with nearly an identical population, has 341 troopers.
"Police chiefs have told me that there are not always enough troopers available to respond when they need back up. An accident or a major crime too often means that there are not enough troopers available to respond to other incidents," Gov. Lynch wrote. "And too few troopers are covering large stretches of highway, even as the number of fatal accidents on our roadways is increasing."
The legislation is sponsored by Senators Lou D'Allesandro, Bob Clegg, Joe Foster, Peter Burling, David Gottesman, Sylvia Larsen, Iris Estabrook, Maggie Hassan, Martha Fuller Clark, Bob Letourneau, John Gallus, Carl Johnson, Jack Barnes, Andy Martel, Joe Kenney, and Dick Green, and Representatives Jim Craig, Dan Eaton, Larry Emerton, Sherman Packard, and Bruce Hunter.