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Entries in NH Senate (359)

Wednesday
Jul012015

NH Sen. Forrester leads Senate Finance review of Legislature’s balanced budget 

Forrester stands by balanced budget, as Hassan overspends.

Concord, NH – The Senate Finance Committee met today in a work session to discuss priorities and plans for moving forward with the legislative budget.

During today’s session, the non-partisan Legislative Budget Assistants Office (LBAO) presented an overview of the entire Legislature passed budget, noting that all spending lines had been accounted for and the budget is balanced.

“The Governor’s claims that the budget she vetoed is unbalanced and dishonest continue to be unfounded, misleading, and hurtful to the people of New Hampshire,” said Senate Finance Chair Jeanie Forrester (R-Meredith).

“We felt it was important to walk through and address the Governor’s concerns about the Legislature’s budget with LBAO to ensure and reiterate that the budget we produced is balanced. I stand by this proposal as a solid foundation that is good for the people and businesses in the State of New Hampshire,” added Forrester.

“We learned today that the Governor ignored the Department of Health and Human Services request to recognize a significant expenditure that may go beyond their appropriation in FY15. The Governor has a responsibility to be transparent about her overspending so that the Legislature can produce a budget that meets New Hampshire’s priorities while making sure we are spending within our means,” said Forrester.

Fiscal Year 2015 closes at midnight tonight. The LBAO notified the Senate Finance Committee that the Department of Administrative Services will provide unaudited spending numbers for FY15 by the end of September.

 “I remain concerned that people counting on funding in the Legislature’s budget will be hurt because of the Governor’s veto. If the Governor overspent her budget this year, we need to know before we can move forward and re-address the next budget,” Forrester concluded.

Tuesday
Jun302015

NH Senators Prescott, Feltes applaud passage of bill to protect electric ratepayers 

Concord, NH - Senator Russell Prescott (R-Kingston) and Senator Dan Feltes (D-Concord) released a joint statement on the passage of Senate Bill 170, which provides increased protections for New Hampshire’s electric ratepayers.

“We are pleased to see both Republicans and Democrats come together to adopt SB 170, which provides greater transparency and information to electricity consumers and much needed consumer protection at the Public Utilities Commission (Commission) for residential customers.”

 “Knowledge is power and as we move to greater competition in the electricity market, more transparency and more information will not only better inform consumers, but it will help drive down prices.  Additionally, residential electric customers in the competitive market, many of whom are seniors on fixed incomes, will now have access to justice at the Commission with much needed consumer protection, helping to curb unfair and deceptive practices targeting vulnerable customers.”

Senator Russell Prescott is the prime sponsor of Senate Bill 170 and Senator Dan Feltes is a member of Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee where this bipartisan legislation was first discussed.

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Friday
Jun262015

NH Senate President’s Statement on Governor ’s Budget Veto 

Concord, NH – Senate President Chuck Morse (R-Salem) released the following statement in response to Governor Hassan’s budget veto.

“I am extremely disappointed in Governor Hassan’s action to veto the budget because it blocks important funding increases that support state agencies and our state’s neediest citizens and creates uncertainty within these organizations. In addition, the veto puts on hold important business tax reductions that are designed to create jobs and stimulate New Hampshire’s business economy,” said Senate President Chuck Morse (R-Salem).

“The Governor’s budget veto shows that her priorities continue to be centered on narrow-minded special interests and not the good of New Hampshire citizens.”

“Although I still believe that a veto is unnecessary, the Continuing Resolution will keep State Government operating while we resume our work in order to produce a budget we can all agree on.”

Friday
Jun262015

Governor's veto sends legislative fiscal committee into action 

Concord—In a matter of just a few hours after Governor Maggie Hasson vetoed the state budget and forced the state into a Continuing Resolution, the Legislative  Fiscal committee was forced to take action to allow a state agency to accept crucial federal funds.  “In what could be the first of many actions taken by the Fiscal committee as a result of the governor’s actions, I have authorized the addition of a late item to the  agenda,” said Chairman Neal Kurk (R-Weare).

 

The committee will be asked to approve the acceptance of $1,136,400 from the United States Department of Commerce and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) for the purpose of distributing federal fisheries disaster relief funds to northeast multispecies commercial harvesters that were impacted by the federal fisheries disaster declared by the Secretary of Commerce in 2012.

 

“This is only the beginning of the risk that our governor has created for state agencies as to their ability to obtain federal funds,” added Kurk.  “Her decision to veto a balanced and well thought out state budget was short sighted at best.  While it certainly creates more work for our state agencies, the Legislative Fiscal committee stands ready to work with our agencies in matters such as this to ensure that state government continues to operate in an efficient manner,” concluded Kurk.

 

The Legislative Fiscal committee is scheduled to meet on Friday, June 26, 2015 at 10:00 AM in Rooms 210-211 of the Legislative Office Building in Concord.

 

 

Thursday
Jun252015

NH Senate, House adopt Continuing Resolution 

Concord, NH – The New Hampshire House of Representatives and Senate today passed a Continuing Resolution to ensure continuity in government at the FY 2015 level in the event the Governor Hassan vetoes the legislative budget.

Senate President Chuck Morse (R-Salem) and House Speaker Shawn Jasper (R-Hudson) released a joint statement regarding the passage of the Continuing Resolution.

“We are proud of the budget that was agreed to by both the House and Senate and believe that this balanced plan that both increases funding to vital social services while effectively reducing business taxes in support of increased job growth in the state of New Hampshire is good for the citizens of our state.”

“We hope this measure will not be necessary, and despite the legislature’s support of this budget, both bodies have adopted a Continuing Resolution that will ensure continuity in state government at the FY 2015 levels should Governor Hassan veto the budget.”

 “The State of New Hampshire deserves the certainty that comes from passing this budget into law and we continue to urge Governor Hassan to sign this budget to avoid consequences of a vetoed budget and eliminate the need for the Continuing Resolution altogether.”