Josh Rogers

Senior Political Reporter and Editor

Josh has worked at NHPR since 2000 and serves as NHPR’s State House reporter. Before joining the staff, he lived in New York, where he worked for a number of different magazines.

Josh’s award winning reporting can be heard locally but also regularly airs on national broadcasts of NPR’s Morning Edition and All Things Considered. Josh is also a frequent analyst on political talk shows in the state. He grew up in Concord, and holds a Bachelor of Arts in American Studies from Reed College.

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The Cheshire Fair may consider clearer protocols for vendors after the sale of racially-tinged items at least week’s fair drew social media protests.

The Dallas Police department has suspended its use of a pistol made by New Hampshire-based Sig Sauer, the latest bit of controversy to visit the local gun-maker.

Governor Chris Sununu will be revving his engine Saturday night at New England Dragway in Epping.

The governor told reporters he doesn’t believe the school buses he, lottery director Charles McIntyre, New Hampshire’s 2017 teacher of the years, and a radio host best known as “Roadkill,” will be driving are souped up.

But he did indicate he’s considering ways to make sure his bus turns heads at it speeds down the ¼ mile drag strip.

www.BackgroundNow.com / Flickr/Creative Commons

A former Portsmouth investment adviser will serve 18 months in federal prison after pleading guilty for defrauding a client of $2 million dollars. The high-profile case had been scheduled for trial this month.

State officials and Dartmouth-Hitchcock have resolved their dispute over staffing levels at New Hampshire Hospital. As part of that deal, Dartmouth-Hitchcock will pay for an outside review of care at the state's mental hospital.  

Governor Chris Sununu says more scrutiny of patient care at the state's mental hospital will only lead to positive outcomes.

NHPR Staff

Governor Sununu's pick to lead a lead a new state department dedicated to economic development had his day before the Executive Council today.

The Governor likes to describe the goal for this new department, which would oversee business development and travel and tourism, as being a "one stop shop" for folks doing business in New Hampshire.

That sounds simple, but it touches areas as diverse as education, housing, and labor policies, all of which can get complicated, as can the business-speak of Sununu's pick to spearhead development efforts, Taylor Caswell.

The backers of marijuana legalization think the study commission set up by legislation that's soon hitting Governor Sununu's desk will be stacked against relaxing marijuana laws.

NHPR Staff

Governor Chris Sununu has issued his first veto since taking office in January, on a bill aimed to set statewide standards for votes on zoning variances.

Josh Rogers for NHPR

After last fall’s election, New Hampshire's Second District Congresswoman, Ann McLane Kuster, said she hoped to find areas where should could agree with President Trump.

"Absolutely I’ll be looking for common ground. Paid family leave that’s one that I think is important, and obviously infrastructure investment, I think is very significant for the economy. And I think there will be others."

NHPR Staff

The new state budget may be in effect, but one issue still unresolved is a contract for state employees. Governor Sununu says he’d welcome a deal but it may not happen.

Negotiations between the Sununu administration and the five unions representing state workers haven’t been easy. 

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Governor Sununu says New Hampshire should turn over public information on voters to a Trump administration voter fraud commission, a view shared by the state's top election official, Secretary of State Bill Gardner. But Gardner says the matter is under review by the Attorney General.

Josh Rogers for NHPR

Two of the year’s biggest policy proposals, the state budget and full-day kindergarten, both bank on the state collecting more money from gamblers.

In total, close to $30 million - via Keno and online lottery tickets. The changes mark the biggest expansion of gambling in New Hampshire in more than a decade.


Governor Chris Sununu is nominating Taylor Caswell to be New Hampshire's first Commissioner of Business and Economic Affairs. The position was created in the new state budget.

Governor Sununu proposed the new commissioner-level job, to oversee what he says will be a revamp of state economic development efforts, and lawmakers bought into it from the start.In Taylor Caswell, Sununu is nominating someone with background in business development and as a bureaucrat.

Utility regulators in Vermont have signed off in the $1.5 billion purchase of FairPoint Communications by Illinois-based Consolidated Communications.

Regulators in Maine and New Hampshire have already approved the merger.

Governor Chris Sununu says he remains committed to reforming Obamacare but opposes the plan proposed by Senate Republican leaders.

The governor's opposition comes as the Senate's top Republican says he is pushing off a scheduled vote on the Senate's version of the bill.

Josh Rogers for NHPR

The GOP-led legislature is sending Governor Chris Sununu a $11.7B dollar budget and a bill to fund full-day kindergarten via Keno.

The outcomes are big wins for a governor who hasn’t always gotten his way with the legislature.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Governor Sununu says this year’s budget process has kept him busy meeting with Republicans, talking to lawmakers one-on-one, and trying to stick with the sales approach he’s learned works best.

Sheehan, Phinney, Bass & Green

Governor Chris Sununu’s pick to join New Hampshire’s Supreme Court, Bobbie Hantz, was questioned by the Executive Council Monday.  

NHPR Staff

When Governor Chris Sununu looked for somebody to replace retiring state supreme court Justice Carol Ann Conboy, he didn’t have to look very far.

His pick, Bobbie Hantz, was, until the day she applied to join the state’s highest court, a member of the selection panel Sununu appointed to help him vet would-be judges.

josh rogers/nhpr

House and Senate negotiators say they have a deal on a two-year state budget that spends less than the $11.8 billion plan passed by the Senate, which trimmed money from than the $11.9 billion proposal backed by House leaders that failed to win approval in April.

New Hampshire's legislative budget writers have until Thursday to reach agreement on a spending plan so the full House and Senate can vote next week. They have lots more work to do, but a decision that doesn’t involve money could shape the trajectory of this debate.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Part of Governor Chris Sununu’s political identity is built on science and thought. There’s Sununu’s oft-cited degree from MIT, his professional background as an engineer, and his family’s well-tended reputation for being smart.

But on two recent issues, the governor backed away from letting science - or expert opinion - guide his policy decisions.


NHPR Staff

Governor Chris Sununu says he much hasn't thought about President Trump's decision to withdraw the U.S from the Paris Climate Agreement.

Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker says the President's decision on Paris is "disappointing;" Vermont Governor Phil Scott calls it "concerning." Both are Republicans, and both say they plan to work across state lines to reduce carbon emissions.

Governor Sununu, meanwhile, says he's not completely sure what he thinks.

Update: 12:55 PM:

This bill has passed the New Hampshire House by a vote of 186-170. We will continue to update this story.

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The New Hampshire House votes Thursday on a bill that would allow fetuses older than twenty weeks to be considered people in cases involving murder, manslaughter and negligent homicide. The debate over what are often called fetal homicide laws isn’t a new one in Concord, but with Republicans controlling the legislature and the governor's office, this year the bill is expected to become law.

Governor Chris Sununu thinks the state and Dartmouth-Hitchcock have cleared the air over their dispute about mental health staffing at New Hampshire hospital.

That was Sununu's take after a meeting Wednesday with Dartmouth-Hitchcock CEO Jim Weinstein.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

The House finance committee has given its unanimous backing to a full-day kindergarten proposal tied to the lottery game Keno.

Under the bill, the state would send school districts that have full-day kindergarten an extra $1100 per pupil starting in 2019.

The bill would also authorize cities and towns to allow Keno. The state's take from the video lottery game would be deposited in the state's education trust fund. The account the new Kindergarten aid would be drawn from. Neal Kurk is chairman of the House Finance Committee.

Brian Wallstin for NHPR

Budget writers in the N.H. House are eyeing the lottery game Keno as a way to fund full day kindergarten. The state senate has always opposed Keno and Governor Sununu says he's yet to see the details of the plan.

josh rogers/nhpr

The Senate Ways and Means committee has adopted revenue figures for the next state budget.

The numbers are higher than the senate's earlier forecasts, but about $20 million shy of what Governor Sununu proposed.

In the context of a $12 billion dollar budget, a $20 million difference may seem small, but reaching agreement was a challenge.

The final vote added $53 million dollars to what the senate projected last week by bumping up estimates on businesses taxes, real estate transfers, and the tax on interests and dividends.

josh rogers/nhpr

Budget writers in the New Hampshire Senate are predicting Medicaid caseload will drop over the next two years.  But underestimating caseloads in the program that benefits the poor helped cause the current state budget shortfall.

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