Tag Archives | NH State House

NH House vote: Free State Project vs. Occupy

Today the New Hampshire House rejected a proposed constitutional amendment that would have required a super-majority vote by both chambers of the legislature to raise taxes or fees.

CACR 1 was defeated by a 149-206 vote. The only Democrat voting in favor of the amendment was Free Stater Rep. Tim O’Flaherty. Rep. Tim Smith, a Manchester Democrat who identifies with the Occupy movement, spoke in opposition and called out “those who would seek to dismantle our government entirely:”

This bill is pure obstructionism. Nothing more, nothing less. When we go back to our districts and have constituents express frustration that the government can’t get anything done, this bill – that we are about to vote on – is a perfect example of what they are frustrated about.

Trying to make it even harder for government to do it’s job, and giving huge power to the minority party if they so seek to obstruct routine functions of the general court, is an absurd model.

We have no idea what the future holds for the Granite State. … Making it harder to fund the state only serves the interests of those who would seek to dismantle our government entirely….

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Quote of the day: Not looking good

“It is not looking good for maintaining our right to self-defense, anywhere we have a right to be, here in NH. The proponents of HB 135 are making headway. The vote in the House Criminal Justice Committee is expected soon; we think the vote will be close, most likely OTP (ought-to-pass). … If HB 135 passes the House we are doubtful we can stop it in the Senate.”

— Free Stater Rep. Laura Jones (R-Rochester) on House Bill 135, which would repeal New Hampshire’s “stand your ground” legislation

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The breathtaking audacity of Jennifer Horn

In a statement opposing Medicaid expansion, New Hampshire Republican Party chair Jennifer Horn declared “we should not abandon good NH programs like CHINS in deference to a federal mandate that will not even be funded.”

Horn, who has a record of rewriting history when it gets in the way of her ideological narrative, blithely ignores the fact that the Republican legislature slashed the CHINS budget to the bone in 2011.

Children in Need of Services (CHINS), which provides services to children with behavioral problems before they escalate to criminal conduct, was one of the most controversial cuts included in the 2012-2013 budget.

The O’Brien-led House proposed eliminating the program entirely before the Senate added back just enough money to handle the most severe cases. The program, which previously helped about 1,000 children a year, now serves only 50.

In the new Legislature, where the Democrats control the House,” writes Ben Leubsdorf, “the CHINS program is getting a fresh look.”

Will Jennifer Horn support Democratic efforts to reinstate the CHINS budget? I’m not holding my breath.

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Bills would dismantle state’s domestic violence laws

Victim advocates say two bills being heard by the House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee are “direct attempts to dismantle New Hampshire’s domestic violence laws.”

Rep. Dan Itse (R-Fremont) is the prime sponsor of House Bill 502 and House Bill 503, which would limit the ability of law enforcement to arrest perpetrators of domestic violence. Garry Rayno has the story:

The state’s domestic violence laws are considered some of the best in the country by victim advocates, but as was the case last year, some lawmakers want to significantly change them.

“These bills are direct attempts to dismantle New Hampshire’s domestic violence laws,” said Amanda Grady Sexton, director of public policy for the New Hampshire Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence. “They would turn back the clock to the ’70s, when there was no protection for victims.”

She said HB 502 would change the state’s presumptive arrest policy so that an officer who saw a beaten victim could not arrest the suspected abuser on the spot.

She said HB 503 would take away law enforcement’s ability to arrest someone for violating a stalking or domestic violence protective order until the victim had filed a criminal complaint with the court.

The House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee will hold a public hearing for HB 502 and HB 503 on Tuesday, February 5, at 1:00 p.m.

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Bill O’Brien: Union bosses blocking right to work

Former state House Speaker Bill O’Brien took to Facebook to gin up attendance for a Wednesday morning committee hearing on right to work legislation.

It’s not going to pass, he concedes, because “union bosses” are calling the shots:

Clearly, it will not pass this session because the House majority Democrat party, receiving at times upwards to 60% of its funding from unions, is in effect the political wing of the unions and the current batch of union bosses is dependent on funding that is inflated by forced membership and fees.

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Bonus quote of the day: Those poor criminals

Criminals have a real hard time in public when we are armed and do not have to run. Rep Shurtleff wants us to run first. This will give the criminals a second chance. Those poor criminals this past year. How they worry who and who does not have a gun. Rep Shurtleff’s HB 135 bill will help them a lot. Maybe we should support his bill to help the criminals sleep a little better at night.

— GOP State Rep. John Burt on House Bill 135, which would repeal the state’s “stand your ground” legislation

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The Partisan Makeup of the House Redistricting Plan

Wednesday, the House Special Committee on Redistricting released the House leadership’s redistricting plan. The plan, which creates new voting districts for the state’s 400 House members, reflects population shifts measured by the 2010 census. This plan varies dramatically from the current plan due, in large part, to a 2006 constitutional amendment that requires every town […]

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State House Update

Today, the House and Senate are both in session with full dockets. Here’s a summary of the damage so far. (For the real-time blow-by-blow account, head to the twittersphere.) HOUSE SB3: Changes to state retirement systemPassed: 238-121 Will go to Committee of Conference SB148: “Requires” AG to join healthcare lawsuit and returns exchange grantPassed: 261-104 […]

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Abandoning Children in Need

The Concord Monitor examines the impact of eliminating “Children in Need of Services” (CHINS), a state program in which parents or school officials can ask the court system for help with children whose behavior suggests serious problems. That intervention … is often a last resort for families dealing with uncontrollable, troubled children and the only […]

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Granite State Poll: Increase Revenue to Balance Budget

By a 73% – 24% margin, New Hampshire residents favor some tax increases to help address New Hampshire’s budget shortfall. As the severity of the proposed spending cuts in the GOP House budget has become known, those who favor balancing the budget with spending cuts alone has decreased from 29% to 24%. A new WMUR […]

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