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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Politics
6:15 pm
Thu June 20, 2013

Governor, Legislative Leaders Hail Common Ground In Budget Plan

The gold dome of the New Hampshire State House.
Credit Ben McLeod / Flickr Creative Commons

State budget negotiators reached accord today on a $10.7 billion spending plan.

The budget still needs approval from the full legislature, but leaders in the House and Senate, as well as Governor Maggie Hassan, agree the proposal meets many shared goals.

NHPR's Josh Rogers tells All Things Considered host Brady Carlson about the negotiation process, what's in the final budget deal and its chances when it goes before the full House and Senate next week.

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NH News
3:03 pm
Tue June 18, 2013

Deal On Medical Marijuana Wins Hassan's Support

At issue for Governor Hassan was a provision in the House version of the bill that would allow qualifying  patients to grow their own marijuan. Hassan also didn’t like that the House wanted to permit doctors to prescribe cannabis to treat PTSD.

The N.H. Senate had removed both provisions from the its version bill at Hassan’s behest, and House negotiators say under the circumstances going along made sense. Concord Democrat Jim McKay is Chairman of the House Health and Human Services Committee.

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Politics
8:20 am
Mon June 17, 2013

On The Political Front For June 17

Credit Sara Plourde

A Thursday deadline is looming for House and Senate lawmakers to come to an agreement on the next two-year state budget. NHPR's Josh Rogers gets us caught up on the state of the negotiations, and what chance there is of Medicaid expansion being wrapped into the final deal.

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NH News
4:42 pm
Fri June 14, 2013

State Budget Negotiatons Begin Quietly

The talks kicked off with small agreements, like the House agreeing with the Senate’s desire to drain $16m from a renewable energy fund,  and also to pay for local water projects starting in 2014 rather than 2015.

But while top budget writers stressed their common goals, big disagreements loom, on taxes and Medicaid expansion.

"Monday we’ll start the hard work of really talking about the issue where we may have some disagreement."

Democrat Mary Jane Wallner is House Finance Committee Chairman; Republican Chuck Morse leads the Senate’s finance panel.

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Politics
9:08 am
Mon June 10, 2013

On The Political Front For June 10

Credit Sara Plourde

It's committee season at the State House, as the legislative year nears its end. In the next couple of weeks, the budget will be getting the most attention, with some contention over Medicaid expansion, school building aid, charter schools, and personnel cuts. Other bills to watch for include medical marijuana and voter ID. US Senator Kelly Ayotte announces she supports a bipartisan immigration bill.

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NH News
6:19 pm
Thu June 6, 2013

N.H. Senate Passes $10.7 Budget

GOP Senate leaders say the proposal is prudent, while democrats say republicans failed NH by opting to study – rather than expand Medicaid.

Budget debates tend to be partisan, and this was no exception. Republicans made clear from the outset their comfort with their spending calls.

"Our budget in senate finance increased spending over the house budget by 24 million dollars."

Chuck Morse chairs the finance committee.

“This is a strong budget.”

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NH News
5:09 pm
Mon June 3, 2013

Medicaid Battle Looms In Budget Negotiations

Governor Maggie Hassan, House Speaker Terie Norelli and Senate Minority Leader Sylvia Larsen all say expanding Medicaid under so-called Obamacare is a good deal for NH:  About 60,000 more people would have insurance,  and $2.5B would flow to the state at a cost of about $85M over seven years. Republicans in the senate didn’t include expansion in their budget, and instead have proposed a commission to study the issue. But Senator Larsen and Speaker Norelli say they support exploring whether expansion can take even if the Senate opposes it.

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Politics
9:16 am
Mon June 3, 2013

On The Political Front For June 3

Credit Sara Plourde

The NH Senate will be voting on its budget this Thursday; their plan calls for $10.7 billion in spending over two years, coming just under the House's budget, which calls for $11b, but doing it with large policy differences. One of those differences is Medicaid expansion, which the Governor and House favor. Looking forward to the 2014 US Senate election, in which incumbent Jeanne Shaheen is expected to run for re-election, Jim Rubens has been added to the list of possible Republican contenders, along with Jeb Bradley, Frank Guinta, and Scott Brown.

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NH News
4:28 pm
Thu May 30, 2013

Auto Dealers Bill Heads To Hassan

The so-called Dealers bill of rights passed both chamber of the legislature by wide margins. And the State Senate agreed to House changes to the bill without debate. Prior to that vote  Senate Commerce committee Chairman Andy Sanborn said the bill has profited from input from all sides.

"I’d like to send our appreciation over to the house for doing all the work, the deep dive that we expect from them to make a good bill a better bill."

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NH News
4:05 pm
Thu May 23, 2013

House Kills Senate Casino Bill, May See Strained Relations

The democratically-controlled NH House voted yesterday to kill a bill authorizing a casino with as many as 5000 slot machines and 150 table games. The vote is blow to Governor Maggie Hassan, who lobbied hard for the bill.  As NHPR’s Josh Rogers reports, the 199-164 vote was consistent with the house’s longstanding opposition to casino gambling, but may strain its relations with the state Senate, which had backed the plan by a supermajority.

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NH News
4:24 pm
Tue May 21, 2013

N.H. Primary Turns 100

Credit josh rogers, NHPR

The Executive Council chambers were packed as N.H.'s political class came together to honor what has become one of the best known things about the state,  the presidential primary. Bill Gardner.

"This is a special day in N.H., in the old days they’d call this a red letter day."

Bill Gardner is N.H.’s Secretary of State. He came equipped with plenty of historical detail, including the biography of Democratic  Rep, Stephen Bullock, who authored law that took effect May 21st 1913.

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Politics
9:31 am
Mon May 20, 2013

On The Political Front For May 20

Credit Sara Plourde

The gambling bill goes to the floor of the NH House for a full vote on Wednesday, after receiving a narrow 23-22 supercommittee vote resulting in a recommendation to kill the bill; the recommendation means that none of the amendments being debated in the House will be under consideration unless Wednesday's vote also fails to approve the bill. One such amendment would look to beef up regulation, while allowing for more revenue. Issues on the docket in the NH Senate include the Stand Your Groud repeal, Voter ID, the gas tax, the tobacco tax, medical marijuana, and the minimum wage.

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NH News
6:23 pm
Wed May 15, 2013

House Supercommittee Narrowly Rejects Senate-Passed Casino Bill

Members of the so-called casino supercommittee spent its morning getting familiar with 17 separate amendments. The proposals ranged from beefing up regulatory oversight, to changing the way casino proceeds would be distributed among towns and counties, to allowing slot machines at any establishment that holds a liquor license.

But when the committee reconvened after lunch, the first motion came quickly, and it was to kill the bill.

“We may be 45 very bright people, but not one of us has a background in gaming.”

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Politics
9:09 am
Mon May 13, 2013

On The Political Front For May 13

Credit Sara Plourde

The New Hampshire House makes its first key vote as the casino bill is voted on by a supercommittee comprised of the House Finance and Ways & Means Committees; various amendments will be considered on Tuesday, with a committee vote and recommendation coming Wednesday. The New Hampshire Senate, meanwhile, continues to work on its budget, and the Senate Finance Committee prepares to hear from some of the larger state agencies - Health & Human Services, Transportation, and Environmental Services - on their budget needs.

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NH News
4:33 pm
Wed May 8, 2013

Senate Committee Reworks Voter ID BIll

The new bill limits a plan that aims to freeze implementation of the next phase of NH’s voter ID law.

Under the provisions of NH’s voter ID law set to kick in in September , only government issued ID would work at the polls --  and local election officials would snap pictures of voters who cast ballots without ID.

Neither provision would take effect under a bill backed by the democratically-controlled house, but the GOP led senate appears to have other plans.

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