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Entries in Josiah Bartlett Center (160)

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

 

 
Saturday
Dec202014

Josiah Bartlett Center - Books for Christmas and Pension Rulings 

Weekly Update from the
Josiah Bartlett Center

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

You’re reading the wrong books. Actually, maybe you’re okay but your friends or your kids need some help. Have no fear, I break from policy today to offer you some Advent reading advice in the final eight days before Christmas.

To begin with, I will presume that too many people who actually stop at this page and read this column are at least a trifle obsessed with politics and that whole bizarre universe. Please stop. Give no books by an “author” who has a radio talk show or is an elected official. Instead read history and economics with a healthy dose of a fiction mixed in. Click here to keep reading


Last week the New Hampshire Supreme Court handed down a ruling in the case of Professional Firefighters of New Hampshire, et al v State of New Hampshire; representing the culmination of nearly three and a half years of legal proceedings that sought to answer the question: how far can the state go in reforming pensions?

The answer: pretty far. The Supreme Court unanimously ruled that increases can be made in employee contribution rates for all employees, regardless of how long they have been working. The increase in employee contribution rates were a key component of the package of pension reform measures that passed in 2011.
 
Click here to keep reading

Wednesday
Dec102014

Josiah Bartlett Center - Stagnation Needn’t Be Our Destiny 

Weekly Update from the
Josiah Bartlett Center


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

 

One of the problems for all of us is that we are living in the past. We think reality is the same as it was 15 years ago but in actuality we’ve been left behind and are in danger of becoming a museum piece. New Hampshire has been left behind and most politicians are reduced to talking about a previous reality that no longer exists except in their mind. Prosperity has been replaced by stagnation, dynamic growth by brackish backwater. This mediocrity is the problem of our time but too many don’t notice the problem or admit to the new rules we operate under.

The 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s were heady times of rapid job growth in New Hampshire. Each decade featured a dynamic economy, an extraordinary competitive advantage over our neighbors that made New Hampshire a haven of in-migration and led to New Hampshire being called an island of prosperity surrounded by a sea of socialism....
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And don't forget to read this Front Page Editorial by the Union Leader in response to this column, which started with "If You Haven't Time For Anything Else Today, Please Read Charles Arlinghaus' Column"


 

Tuesday
Dec022014

Tuesday Night’s Josiah Bartlett Event 

Hi everyone, I suspect we’ve pestered you enough that you know by now about our great event coming up tomorrow night. I think it looks to be both pleasant and informative with guests including the Senate President, likely Speaker of the House, and a Congressman or two. More important, it will be a good size for networking at a great location. I think it will be fun and we promise to keep the programmatic bits to a minimum.
 
This is a reminder in the aftermath of Thanksgiving that the event of the season is in fact tomorrow. If you want to sign up online or just drop us a note to sign up at the door either is fine. I do hope we’ll see you so we can focus on the future and have a pleasant evening doing it.
 
                                                                                                                                                           Charlie

Thursday
Nov132014

Josiah Bartlett Center - 2015 Policy Preview and Winter Social with the Josiah Bartlett Center 

Friends,

We’ve made it through election season, but the next legislative session is around the corner. What better time for the Josiah Bartlett Center to invite you to our 2015 Policy Preview and Winter Social! 

That’s right, we’re holding an event on December 2, at the Currier Museum of Art. We hope you can join us for the networking event of the season, at which you will be treated to an evening of facts, fun, and fellowship – not necessarily in that order.  Mingle with the movers and shakers of government, hear what’s going on before it makes the news, all while taking in the elegant surroundings of the Currier Museum of Art.

 
I hope to see you there!

                                                                                                    -Rich Ashooh
 
                  



 
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