Forrester Blasts Reynolds on Passage of “OK to Steal” Law

Cites as latest example of Reynolds’ anti-small business stance

Meredith, NH: Conservative Republican Candidate for State Senate District 2, Jeanie Forrester, today blasted Democratic State Senator Deborah Reynolds’ support of and work on HB1168 the “OK to Steal from Small Business” Act.

Signed into law last week by Governor Lynch and scheduled to go into effect Labor Day, September 6th, HB 1168 now exempts employee theft of up to $500 from “gross misconduct”.

“So, as small businesses in District 2 struggle for profitability, Deb Reynolds comes along and tells the owners that it is now OK for employees to steal from them,” said Forrester. “It’s outrageous that Deb Reynolds would support legislation that allows an employee to steal $499.99 from his or her employer and still collect unemployment benefits after they got fired.”

Under HB1168, employee thefts of less than $500 from employers, vendors, charity collections and customers would not be classified as “gross misconduct” and if fired, would still be allowed to collect unemployment benefits. State Senator Deb Reynolds was an assigned member of the House and Senate Conference Committee before sending the bill to Governor Lynch for signing. The Senate vote was on a voice vote and no recorded vote exists.

“Unemployment benefit rates are a big cost of doing business in New Hampshire and now many, many small businesses, forced to fire employees for stealing $499.99 or less, are going to see those rates go even higher – thanks to Deb Reynolds,” continued Forrester. “I cannot understand for the life of me why Concord would think it’s OK to steal $499.99 and still allow someone to collect unemployment benefits. Clearly, the incumbents are out of touch.”

Republican Jeanie Forrester believes the already struggling unemployment benefits fund should be preserved to help the good, hardworking, honest citizens of District 2 who have fallen on hard times and not those who steal. The fund cannot do both. She has pledged to sponsor repeal legislation in the next session starting in January 2011.