Press Releases



Citizens For A Strong NH - Remembering Hassan's Tent Tax 

Remember Governor Maggie Hassan's "Campground Tax."


(July 3, 2015) -  As thousands of New Hampshire families and out-of-state tourists head to Granite State campgrounds for the 4th of July weekend, it is important for them to remember that if Governor Maggie Hassan had her way back in 2009, this could be a much more costly holiday. Furthermore, many of the campgrounds that existed then likely would have been forced to close down by now due to what became known as the costly and absurd "Tent Tax."


In 2009, the New Hampshire Legislature agreed in the FY 2010 - FY 2011 budget to raise the state's Rooms and Meals Tax from 8% to 9%, and expanded the tax to campsites.

  • In June of 2009, then State Senator Maggie Hassan, who was also a Senator Budget Conferee, voted for the FY 2010 - FY 2011 budget. (HB1, Roll Call Vote #103: Conference Committee Report Adopted 13-11, 6/24/09, Hassan Voted Yea; Senate Journal 20, 6/24/09, pg. 595)
  • In June of 2009, then State Senator Maggie Hassan voted for HB2, the trailer bill for the FY 2010 - FY2011 budget, which expanded the Hotels and Rooms Tax to campsites. (HB2, Roll Call Vote #104: Conference Report Adopted 13-11, 6/24/09, Hassan Voted Yea; Senate Journal 20, 6/24/09, pg. 661)
    • HB2 "increases the Meals and Rooms Tax, adds campsites to the definition of hotel." (HB2, signed into law 6/30/09; Senate Journal 20, 6/24/09, pg. 655)

In response to the newly imposed 'Tent Tax,' public pressure mounted quickly as campsite owners and vacationers recognized how detrimental it would be to the industry. WBZ-TV talked to one campground owner who said that a "9% meal and room tax increase could put many campgrounds out of business. Local campers even said "we are in a fixed income, yeah that (tax) is going to hurt."

In addition to the public outcry, the tax fell far short of what it was expected to raise, according to Gregg Pitman, executive director of the New Hampshire Campground Owners Association. 

  • In April 2010, then State Senator Maggie Hassan voted to repeal the Campsite Tax (HB1445, Roll Call Vote #48: Motion To Pass Adopted 24-0, 4/7/10, Hassan Voted Yea; Senate Journal 13, 4/7/10, pg. 279)
  • In May 2010, the Campsite Tax Repeal was signed into law, "eliminating the meals and rooms tax on campsites." (HB1445, Signed Into Law 5/3/10)

*Note: In 2010, then State Senator Maggie Hassan lost her State Senate seat to current State Senator Russell Prescott.


Derek Dufresne, Spokesman for Citizens for a Strong New Hampshire, released the following statement:

"In addition to the fact that our state's tourism industry is a crucial aspect of our economy, summer vacations to local campgrounds are a time-honored tradition enjoyed by many New Hampshire families and out-of-state tourists alike. As countless Granite Staters gear up for a weekend at one of our many campgrounds, it is important for them to remember that if then State Senator Maggie Hassan had her way, the Granite State campground industry of today would look significantly different.

"Only a tax and spend liberal like Maggie Hassan would believe that imposing a Rooms and Meals tax on a parking spot for a camper was a good idea. This tax would have taken a significant chunk out of New Hampshire families' pockets and forced countless campgrounds to shutdown. Thankfully, Hassan's 'Tent Tax' didn't last long, but it is just another example of how out-of-touch she is with issues important to Granite State families."




CEI Today: Obama overtime rule, union dues, EPA climate report, Ex-Im Bank, and more 

Wednesday, July 1, 2015
In the News Today



The Department of Labor this week is putting out its proposed rule to more than double the salary level under which many workers would qualify for overtime pay for working more than 40 hours a week. CEI labor policy experts warn that those government mandated benefits won't materialize for most people. "Business owners will be forced to off-set the new costs with some combination of lay-offs, lower base pay, and hiring or promotion freezes," said Aloysius Hogan, CEI senior fellow.

> Interview an expert


U.S. Supreme Court to Take on Government Union Power


Today, the U.S. Supreme Court granted cert to a case that could give all public employees right-to-work protections. If SCOTUS rules in favor of the plaintiff, government unions would lose their power to compel non-members to pay union dues as a condition of employment. > Read more

> Interview Trey Kovacs




EPA’s Climate Action Flim-Flam Report

EPA last week released Climate Change in the United States: Benefits of Global Action. Unsurprisingly, in EPA’s assessment, unmitigated warming produces terrible and terrifying climate impacts whereas “global action” reduces such impacts to manageable and non-threatening levels.  > Read more

> Interview Marlo Lewis


Pro-Market Recommendations for Policy Makers

We suggest a strategy of “de facto devolution,” which basically involves keeping federal spending steady while increasing the flexibility of states to fund and finance their own highways.  > Read more 

> Interview Marc Scribner



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NH Sen. Chuck Morse- To Compete, NH must lower business taxes 

Union Leader Masthead.jpg


July 1, 2015

To Compete, New Hampshire must lower business taxes

By Sen. Chuck Morse


THE NEW Hampshire Advantage used to be easier. No sales tax. No income tax. Rely on our neighboring states to do something uncompetitive.

New Hampshire had always been able to make our state a competitive place to do business simply by avoiding the mistakes of those around us.

But our friends and neighbors are catching on by actively lowering barriers to businesses. They are creating jobs far faster than we are. If New Hampshire is going to compete for jobs and economic growth, we need to reform our business tax climate. What we are doing clearly isn’t working. New Hampshire is lagging behind. A recent report from The Pew Charitable Trusts ranks us in the bottom 10 for job creation since the last recession.

The Tax Foundation ranks New Hampshire 48th for corporate taxes. The business profits tax sits at 8.5 percent, while Massachusetts and Rhode Island have lowered their rates to drop below us. And no other state has anything comparable to the Business Enterprise Tax, which charges entrepreneurs 0.75 percent on their payroll and investments, whether or not the business is making money. If we do nothing, New Hampshire will soon have the highest business taxes in New England.

The Legislature has approved a plan to make our business climate more competitive, providing tax relief to our state’s private-sector employers and sending a signal that the Granite State is again open for business. By phasing in modest reductions in the BPT and BET over the next five years, we can lower the BPT by 7 percent and the BET by 10 percent.

That would lower the cost of doing business in New Hampshire and leave our employers with more money to reinvest in their businesses, add jobs or provide pay raises to their existing employees. Businesses employing 95 percent of our state’s private-sector workforce would get a tax cut. This would be the first reduction in the BPT in 20 years, and the first time we’ve cut the rate of the BET, ever.

Our plan for cutting business taxes was included in New Hampshire’s operating budget and accounted for the $21 million in tax relief to ensure the budget is balanced. To put this in perspective, enacting the modest reductions costs $21 million out of an $11.3 billion budget, equalling .2 percent, rounded up.

Unfortunately, Gov. Maggie Hassan does not believe we can afford a modest reduction in our business tax rates, and she vetoed the entire budget. But if now is not the right time to lower business tax rates, when is the right time? Her action leaves our state without a budget, but state government will continue to operate under a six-month continuing resolution at current funding levels.

It also leaves us with business tax rates that are too high to compete well. We should not settle for being 48th in the country. Maintaining the status quo means we maintain the status quo.

We want to do more to encourage businesses to move here and to encourage the ones that are here to add jobs and pay their employees more. Doing nothing eliminates increased opportunities to have good jobs that could keep young people in our state. Ask the parents of graduating students, have those students been able to find jobs? For too many families and newly graduated students, the answer is no. We need to do more.

With her steadfast opposition to lowering business tax rates and consistently proposing tax increases throughout her career, Gov. Hassan seems to have decided that businesses are the enemy. Her rhetoric attacks us for trying to help “out of state corporations,” which is not only false, it misses the point entirely.

Our business tax cuts would benefit every business that pays taxes in New Hampshire. That covers 95 percent of the private-sector workforce. From mom and pop stores to Market Basket, and from startups to BAE Systems, we want all of our businesses to thrive and create new jobs. Attacking good employers who happened to be headquartered out of state is short-sighted and remarkably counterproductive.

We’ve made great strides this year to lower workers’ compensation costs, lower electric rates and update our banking and securities laws. Lowering business taxes is the next necessary step to reviving the New Hampshire economy, and the appropriate time is right now. Gov. Hassan says tax relief comes “at the expense of critical economic priorities.” We strongly disagree with her. Jump starting New Hampshire’s job creators is an economic priority.

Sen. Chuck Morse, R-Salem, is president of the New Hampshire Senate.


NH DHHS - Food Safety Tips for the Summer Season 

Concord, NH – During this busy summer season of trips to the beach,

vacations, and cookouts, the Department of Health and Human

Services’ (DHHS) Food Protection Section wants to remind everyone to follow

some important food safety practices to avoid foodborne illnesses, such as

Salmonella, Shigella, E. coli, and Campylobacter.

There are an estimated 48 million cases of foodborne disease each year, but

there is no way to know for sure since many foodborne illnesses are never

reported and not everyone even goes to see their healthcare provider.

However, in 2013, there were 19,056 confirmed cases of foodborne illness

resulting in 4,200 hospitalizations and 80 deaths according to U.S. Centers

for Disease Control and Prevention data.

“Food is an important part of vacation and holiday gatherings but it needs

to be handled safely, especially during the warmer weather,” said Marcella

Bobinsky, Acting Director of Public Health at DHHS. “The basic rule is to

keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold. Just like hand washing, the more we

practice it the more routine it becomes and the safer we all will be.”

A DHHS video on summer grilling food safety is available on YouTube at There are some simple

precautions everyone should always take to reduce the possibility of

becoming sick when preparing food, which include:

· Separate: Avoid cross contamination. Use a separate cutting board for

cooked foods and raw foods (especially meat) and always wash them

after use. Wash any utensil after preparing one food item before

going on to the next item.

· Clean: Always wash hands before touching any food. Wash hands and

surfaces often during food preparation and afterward.

· Cook: Pork, lamb, veal, and whole cuts of beef should be cooked to

145 °F as measured by a food thermometer placed in the thickest part

of the meat, followed by a three-minute rest time before carving or

consuming. Hamburgers and other ground beef should reach 160 °F. All

poultry should reach a minimum temperature of 165 °F. Fish should be

cooked to 145 °F. Fully cooked meats like hot dogs should be grilled

to 165 °F or until steaming hot.

· Chill: Refrigerate or freeze leftovers within two hours. One hour if

it is a hot day over

90ºF. The refrigerator should be maintained at 40ºF or lower and the

freezer should be at 0ºF or lower. Keep hot foods hot, 140ºF or

hotter, and cold foods cold, 40ºF or below. Never defrost food at

room temperature. Thaw food in the refrigerator, in a cold-water

bath, or in the microwave. When using a microwave, meat must be

cooked immediately after. Marinate foods in the refrigerator.

· Report: Report suspected foodborne illnesses to the NH Department of

Health and Human Services by calling 603-271-4496. Often calls from

concerned citizens are how outbreaks are first detected. If a public

health official calls you to talk about an outbreak, your cooperation

is important, even if you are not ill.

For more information, visit the U.S. Department of Agriculture at  or

, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) at , the

DHHS website at , or .


NHDP - ICYMI: Senate Finance Hearing Confirms Legislators Ignored Governor Hassan on HHS Budget



Overestimated Carry-Forward

Concord, N.H. – The Union Leader reported that at yesterday’s Senate Finance hearing, Republican Senators confirmed they had ignored what Governor Hassan has been saying about DHHS for months, leading them to use inflated carry-forward numbers that rendered their budget unbalanced.
The Union Leader points out, “Department officials and Hassan had warned budget writers about a year ago the agency was facing a significant shortfall due to an increase in Medicaid caseloads not associated with the Medicaid expansion program.” But apparently Republican Senators weren’t paying attention.
Chuck Morse said, “Without knowing (the adjusted figures)… I don’t know how we can go back and rebalance this budget,” admitting that the Republican budget is unbalanced while ignoring the fact that it was Republicans who made the choice to use funds that weren’t actually available in their fiscally irresponsible proposal.