With an eye to the economic distress and an ear to constituent concerns, the New Hampshire House Republican Alliance (the “HRA”) announced their legislative initiatives for the upcoming session. This agenda is the results of meetings and discussions involving approximately 50 New Hampshire state representatives among themselves and with their constituents.
These meetings led the HRA to recognize five primary concerns of New Hampshire citizens that they want address by their state government: health care costs and availability, over-spending resulting in increasing deficits and taxes, promotion of jobs, reversing the radical social agenda of the left, and ensuring an open, accountable and ethical government. The HRA’s legislative agenda addresses each of these five goals and the organization appointed five coordinators to assist sponsors of the legislation chosen as promoting those goals.
Answering the confusion caused by national health care ambitions, Representative Bob Willette (R-Milford) outlined the HRA support of bills allowing expansion of the New Hampshire health insurance market. “Current legislative mandates have driven dozens of health insurers from the state resulting in an uncompetitive market with high premiums,” Rep. Willette explained. Proposed legislation would allow residents of New Hampshire to purchase insurance from any health insurance carrier in the United States. The result should be fewer uninsured patients and less of a burden on taxpayer supported health care solutions. The HRA also understand that members of Congress should have the same health care they propose for citizens and supports a resolution advising them to take that courageous step.
The Democrat-dominated NH House increased state spending by 10 % and passed over 38 new taxes and fees the first half of this term, so the HRA conferees understood that NH citizens and business will need quick and significant tax relief. Seven such bills are being sponsored by the HRA. As Rep. Carol McGuire (R- Epsom) said with regard to two of them, “Repeal of the anti-business LLC tax and the onerous ‘camping’ tax lead the list of the committee’s proposed bills and their repeal is necessary to preserve jobs and avoid stifling our state’s recovery from this ongoing recession.”
Rep. Bill O’Brien (R-Mont Vernon) said, “The Legislature’s Democrats have now come up with what we should now call the New Hampshire Disadvantage and this disadvantage is that we are the fourth worse state in amount of regulation among all fifty states. Expecting business to locate here or expand in the Granite State is unrealistic given the heavy regulatory burden imposed by state laws. We regulate every job creating entity from manufacturers to people who manicure and pedicure and that has to end.” Other legislation involves repealing health care insurance mandates, which could reduce by half the cost of this insurance.
Former judge and current Representative Rob Rowe (R-Amherst) plans to introduce important initiatives for better government, include prohibiting lobbyists from serving in conflicting roles on state committees and commissions. In addition, Rep. Bob Mead (R-Mont Vernon) will be seeking a commission to investigate the method for vetting bidders and those not bidding but being awarded state contracts involving the use of state owned property, such as the state-owned rail tracks in Hillsborough County. Good government measures will also include publishing the states’ check register online. As Rep. John Reagan (R-Deerfield) said, “It works in Texas and should be required in New Hampshire which has a strong tradition of an open and accountable government.”
House Republican Alliance is an open meeting group supporting Republican House legislation that adheres to the US and NH Constitutions, Republican Party platform and principles of fiscal responsibility. The HRA annual legislative summit producing this year’s agenda saw participation by more than forty Republican State Representatives. . For more information, please log onto www.nhhra.org ###