Finance--First came word that Concord Representative Mary Jane Wallner, rather than Marjorie Smith, of Durham, would chair the Finance Committee.
Now comes word, from a usually very reliable source that Rep. Smith won't even serve on the Finance Committee.
I believe the rumor (the source asked to be protected, and I always honor such requests here), and on second thought, I'm not surprised.
Rep. Smith seemed genuinely pained at all the cuts the Finance Committee had to make when she was chair last time Terie Norelli was speaker.
To quote a hackneyed line, "You ain't seen nothing yet."
When it comes to cuts as I've intimated here the past few days, "You ain't seen nothing yet."
I don't think Rep. Smith (and this is not meant as a criticism; I like her a great deal, probably more than she likes me) is cut out for cutting. Very few people, in fact, are psychologically up to the job of cutting. Just like it takes a tough man to make a tender chicken, it takes a tough man (woman) to make a less than tender budget.
Have I asked Rep. Smith if this rumor is true?
Of course not. Why spoil a good rumor by verifying it. This source, however, is impeccable.
Where will Rep. Smith go? To quote one of my German friends who didn't exactly get his English right all the time, "Nobody knows it."
Let the speculation begin. With Steve Shurtleff as Majority Leader, there's an opening for Criminal Justice Chair. I've also heard that Norelli opponent David Campbell will chair Public Works and Highways; former Democratic chair of that committee Candace Bouchard.
Casinos--Also on the rumor front, I've heard that Governor Elect Maggie Hassan might well be open to moving away from her support of just one slots parlor (casino) in the state; she may accept more than one and may agree to the concept of state-owned and state-controlled. Hey, that sounds like the Gatsas plan which I've already filed.
Traps--Here's one that's way beyond the rumor stage--With the tragic death of a family dog in a trap in Auburn this past week, an anti-trapping bill will be filed again; it most likely would have been filed even without that incident.
Who would file such a bill? Well, who was soundly thrashed when, as a freshman representative in 1997, he (or she) first tried to ban trapping? He (or she) has failed two or three times since and is ready to try once again. No guts, no glory.
Isn't it great when you can pose questions about YOURSELF! Yes, that animal lover would be...not me...but I! My hopes are less than high for its success, but it's the moral thing to do. As I always say, I don’t mind you eating animals (I’m no vegan) or wearing animals (although that’s really no longer needed), just don’t torture them.
Make no mistake about it, even in its most humane form, trapping is TORTURE!
When I filed this bill in 2007, the co-sponsors were quite diverse…Democrats Peter Leishman and Mary Stuart Gile and Republican...are you ready for this...D. J. Bettencourt. Alas, no longer with us is animal rights Senator Sheila Roberge, who until be told that props were frowned upon, used to bring in a little trap to hearings. In 1997, trackers bedecked in plaid stormed the hearing room (which had been moved to Reps Hall).
Ready for a replay?
Mais oui. Dig those plaid suits out of the closet, you jolly old trappers.
Dog dies after getting caught in animal trap
Police Lt. Ray Pelton said Melissa Fogelson was walking her dog on a trail on the Manchester Waterworks property when her dog got stuck in the trap and suffocated.
"It's pretty bad," he said.
Pelton said police called in New Hampshire Fish and Game officers because the trap, which was on the ground, may have been illegal and was set so close to a walking trail.
"It wasn't like she was in the middle of the woods," he said. "They were on the trail. That could have been a kid or anybody" ensnared in the trap.