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Entries in NH House Republicans (134)

Wednesday
Mar262014

House Republicans Comment on Passage of SB413 Medicaid Expansion

CONCORD - House Republican Leader Gene Chandler (R-Bartlett) and Ranking Republican on the House Finance Committee, Neal Kurk (R-Weare) offered the following statements in reaction to the House vote on SB413, relative to access to health insurance coverage. The bill passed the House by a 202-132 vote

 

House Republican Leader Gene Chandler (R-Bartlett)

“The majority of House Republicans weren’t convinced this bill is the right solution for New Hampshire. There are a number of Republican members who won’t vote for any program tied to the failed Obamacare law and the vote today reflected that. There are concerns about how the state will be able to pay for this type of entitlement expansion in perpetuity and if that could lead to significant budget problems down the road. This type and scale of program represents the largest increase in spending New Hampshire has seen for some time, and it is dependent on funding from the federal government which can’t seem to keep many promises.”

“In order to implement SB413 as written, the State requires approval from the federal government. Until then, we will be expending resources on something that may never fully materialize. Getting that approval prior to starting the program is common sense. Any household would want their permit approved prior to starting a large addition. If the waivers aren’t approved, we’ll have expended resources on startup and implementation costs and we’ll have extended coverage to citizens only to reverse course.”

Rep. Neal Kurk (R-Weare), Ranking Republican, House Finance Committee

“Republicans offered common sense amendments to add reasonable financial safeguards to the bill. We believe that if New Hampshire enters into this expansion of Obamacare, we should to our best to eliminate our exposure to fiscal disaster. Waivers should be in place before any aspect of any program moves forward. Cost and enrollment estimates are just estimates. There should be some mechanism by which the program cost or enrollment cannot balloon out of control.  The cost of insuring the 50,000 able-bodied but low-income adults who, it is estimated, will qualify for the  program is significant – about $340 million a year once the program is up and running. When the federal funding share drops we need protections from runaway costs.”

Friday
Mar212014

NH House Republican Leader Comments on Bill That Spends Anticipated Surplus

CONCORD - House Republican Leader Gene Chandler (R-Bartlett) released the following statement relative to the House vote on HB1635, the second bill of the week that reopens the state budget to increase spending by using estimated budget surplus dollars. The bill passed by a vote of 173-125.

House Republican Gene Chandler (R-Bartlett)

“In just two days, the Democratically controlled House has passed two bills that spend surplus funds and reopen the budget to increase spending. This is not fiscally responsible. We had an opportunity to bolster our state rainy day fund by saving the entire 2013 surplus, something the State Treasurer agrees is the right thing to do.  Yesterday, when the House passed HB 1411, almost half of those funds were spent. Now, by passing HB1635, we are not only opening up the budget once again, we’re spending money we don’t have yet. We’re now proposing to use funds from the current budget surplus, which is only anticipated, not guaranteed.  This is a disturbing trend that most New Hampshire citizens wouldn’t consider for their own household budgets.”

Friday
Mar212014

NH House Republicans Comment on Passage of Paint Tax Bill 

CONCORD - House Republican Leader Gene Chandler (R-Bartlett) and member of the House Environment & Agriculture Committee, John O’Connor (R-Derry), offered the following comments relative to House action today on HB1570, a bill that would impose a tax on paint sellers that would fund a new government program for paint disposal. The bill passed by a vote of 161-142.

House Republican Leader Gene Chandler (R-Bartlett)

“This bill proposes a new tax, is anti-free-market, and anti-small business. This bill would impose a new tax on paint, borne by the retailers. Some proponents may say that sellers could absorb the tax - currently 75 cents per gallon in the three states where the program is in effect. Maybe large box stores, with deep pockets can, but those small town mom-and-pop hardware stores cannot. This new tax will no doubt get passed on to the consumer in the form of higher prices. If this tax bill becomes law, New Hampshire consumers can look forward to higher home improvement costs.”

Rep. John O’Connor (R-Derry) House Environment & Agriculture Committee member

“Any paint manufacturer not willing to sign on with this program will not be allowed to sell their products in NH. This will essentially eliminate the ability for new, small paint companies to enter the New Hampshire market and reduce competition and stifles innovation.”


“The bill as proposed is far from ready for prime time and has too many weaknesses to name. There are major legal questions that have yet to be vetted by the Attorney General’s office, including antitrust concerns. This tax bill picks favorites and hits small retailers and consumers without effectively addressing the full scope of the problem it’s trying to resolve.”

Thursday
Mar202014

NH House Republican Leader Comments on Bill That Spends Surplus Funds

CONCORD - House Republican Leader Gene Chandler (R-Bartlett) offered the following statement relative to House vote on HB1411, a bill that spends rather than saves 2013 budget surplus dollars, and reopens the budget to increase spending at the Department of Health and Human Services. The bill passed by a vote of 185-153. An amendment sponsored by Rep. Chandler and Rep. Kurk proposed depositing all $15.3 million in surplus funds into the Rainy Day fund. The amendment failed by a vote of 157-172.

House Republican Leader Gene Chandler (R-Bartlett)

“We passed a 2 year state budget last year with a bipartisan majority. We cannot begin reopening the budget to increase spending whenever a state agency needs a boost. It’s setting a very dangerous precedent. The state has the equivalent of less than 1% of general fund revenue in its rainy day account. This is unacceptable. Without adequate savings, the state has little or no cushion if revenues fall too short of projections. The State Treasurer has recommended putting the entire $15.3 million of surplus funds in the rainy day fund. It will strengthen our state’s finances and credit, and in our opinion it’s the right thing to do. Ratings agencies such as Moody’s suggest in order to maintain a AA1 rating, a minimum of 5% should be in reserve. That equals about $70 million for New Hampshire. The amendment Republicans offered proposed to put all of the surplus into the Rainy Day Fund, which is the financially responsible place to put it. $15 million is a small but necessary step towards that goal.”

Thursday
Mar202014

NH House Republican Leader Statement on House Action on HB1264 Gun Control

CONCORD - House Republican Leader Gene Chandler (R-Bartlett) offered the following statement following House action on HB 1264, a bill originally intended to address concealed carry permit rules for out-of-staters, but via an amendment, was changed to a study commission with a politically charged focus. The bill was tabled by a vote of 186-150.

House Republican Leader Gene Chandler (R-Bartlett)

“A simple bill with good intentions was targeted by anti-second amendment advocates in the legislature as a vehicle for their agenda. The bill, as amended, was a dramatic departure from the intent of the original bill and is clearly an attempt to further the discussion on universal background checks and scrutiny on gun owners. The House, just over a month ago, already dismissed HB1589, a bill that sought to study similar issues. The bill was defeated by an overwhelming bipartisan majority, 242-118.”

“Clearly the procedural questions that were raised during the debate were enough to convince a bipartisan majority of the House that HB 1264 should not move forward. The House has rules and procedures by which we should operate and many members thought this was the wrong bill brought about the wrong way.”


“This is another demonstration that the majority of New Hampshire House members respect the Second Amendment and the rights of gun owners.”