NH Legislature

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Tours of the New Hampshire Statehouse are once again being held on Saturdays.

Free tours have been scheduled for Oct. 7 and Oct. 14. The tours will take place every 30 minutes from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Additional weekend tours will be available on Dec. 9, when the Statehouse is decorated for the holidays.

The tours will depart from the Statehouse Visitor Center at 107 North Main Street.

Last year, the Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce conducted a successful pilot program that helped determine the demand and future possibility of weekend Statehouse tours.

Tracy Lee Carroll; NHPR

We're talking with the three candidates who want to be the next state senator from District 16. The issues they're talking about impact all of the Granite State, including public education, child protection, taxes, and workforce development. 


How many retirees represent Merrimack County in the Legislature? What percentage of state reps are under the age of 35? And how does the State House's male/female ratio vary by political party?

The makeup of the New Hampshire House of Representatives has a major impact on daily life in the state. After all, these are the people who make the laws that govern us.

Hannah McCarthy/NHPR

New Hampshire has the largest state legislature in the country - by a lot. The 400 members of the House of Representatives are supposed to be “citizen legislators” - people who are just like the constituents they represent. They earn $100 a year, making them essentially volunteers, albeit volunteers with major responsibility and time commitment...and volunteers who don’t always show up.

Just ask Rep. Jim Belanger, chairman of the House Municipal and County Government Committee.

Weekly N.H. News Roundup: March 24, 2017

Mar 24, 2017

Governor Chris Sununu made an unannounced trade mission to Montreal, re-affirming his support for Northern Pass and urging updates to NAFTA. House budget writers craft their version of the new state spending plan, eliminating 18 million dollars in kindergarten funding.  And flags are lowered to half-staff on the news of the death of State Senator Scott McGilvray. 


Mike Mozart

Proposed Senate Bill 247 aims to prevent lead poisoning in children by strengthening lead testing requirements for children, and placing stricter requirements on properties containing lead paint. For some families, lead poisoning has caused long-term health problems that sometimes don't appear until years after exposure, and experts think the restrictions are not strong enough. However, landlords worry that the new requirements would be difficult to comply with, and come at a huge cost, and funding will be insufficient. For example, companies like Brady Sullivan are still managing fallout from lead poisoning several years ago that contributed to health problems in children living at their properties. We'll look at all sides of this issue.


Who Should Have Access To Medical Marijuana?

Feb 8, 2017
Pixabay.com

Several bills in the New Hampshire legislature would extend the list of qualifying conditions for therapeutic cannabis, including chronic pain and PTSD. But a new report from the National Academy of Sciences finds that "cannabis has both therapeutic value and public health risks."


Todd Bookman

We tackle two of the hottest issues of the week at the Statehouse: repealing concealed carry and Right-to-Work legislation.  In the first half-hour we'll address SB12, which would allow gun owners to carry their weapons concealed without a special permit.  In the second half-hour, we look at SB11, which prohibits unions from collecting dues from nonmembers.  Both have come up repeatedly in recent years, but with Republicans in control of both the legislature and executive branch, they have a good chance of becoming law. 


Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Hearings for the new legislative session officially kick off this week in Concord. And lawmakers are getting right to business with two controversial bills already on the docket.

NHPR

We sit down with state House and Senate leaders, on their goals for the new session.  The state budget will be their first priority, but other policy matters, from Medicaid to gun laws to voting rules, will be debated. What do you hope the Legislature does this year? 


Allegra Boverman for NHPR

By the end of this week, New Hampshire will — technically — have had three different governors in the span of just a few days.

Governor-Elect Chris Sununu will be sworn into his new role Thursday afternoon, becoming the country’s youngest sitting governor and the first Republican to lead New Hampshire in 12 years. (Former Gov. Craig Benson, whose term ended in 2005, was the last Republican in the corner office.)

Tax Credits via Flickr Creative Commons

Among the slate of economic measures state lawmakers will consider next session is a bill to impose an income tax. The sponsor is well aware of what he’s up against.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

State lawmakers will chose the next Speaker of the New Hampshire House of Representatives Wednesday.  

Current Speaker Shawn Jasper looks in good position to keep his speaker’s gavel, with Republicans holding a solid majority in the House. 

Allegra Boverman; NHPR

For the first time in fourteen years, New Hampshire Democrats lost the governorship to Republicans, who also held onto the legislature.  These trends are playing out at statehouses around the country, with Democrats now controlling the smallest number of legislatures, ever.


Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Eight New Hampshire senators have announced they'll be moving on -- some to other offices, some back to private life.  We'll sit down with four of them, looking back at the accomplishments and challenges of their tenure and discussing how New Hampshire politics and the legislature has changed over the years.

This program was hosted by Dean Spiliotes, Civic Scholar in the School of Arts and Sciences at Southern New Hampshire University.

Sara Plourde / NHPR

The classic gerrymandered map you learned about in high school civics class is full of oddly-shaped legislative districts, drawn with obvious intent to boost one party.

But in New Hampshire, that’s rarely the case: It’s very hard to see, just by looking at the election maps, which districts might help or hurt a certain party’s chances.

So has gerrymandering been a factor in the state’s politics? And if so, how much?

Digitization supported by the Cogswell Benevolent Trust. / Image obtained via the New Hampshire Historical Society

Here’s a confusing reality about New Hampshire politics today:

Democrats are having success like never before, scoring wins that would have been unimaginable just two decades ago.

But despite that shift, there’s one place where Republicans still have a leg up on Election Day: the state Legislature.

A non-profit organization that trains volunteers to represent child victims in neglect and abuse cases is asking lawmakers to grant it immunity from civil and criminal liability.

2016 State House Look Ahead: Legislator Roundtable

Jan 11, 2016
Allegra Boverman / NHPR

We're sitting down with lawmakers to find out what's in store at the State House this year. 

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

 

New Hampshire's Legislature is opening its election-year session with plenty of political maneuvering expected to steer policy discussions.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

In three weeks the House and Senate will return to Concord for a new legislative session and although election year sessions are typically quiet affairs, next year could prove an exception. 

During this session come January, lawmakers will have their hands full with two issues in particular: the opioid crisis and whether to continue the state’s expanded Medicaid program.

Allegra Boverman / NHPR

Approved by a special legislative session, a newly minted task force will spend the next weeks considering several options for tackling the state’s drug problem, which has claimed more than five hundred lives in the last two years. The goal is to craft legislation quickly -- in time for the January return of the legislature.

GUESTS:F

Top N.H. Lawmakers Discuss Bipartisan Budget Deal

Sep 17, 2015
NHPR

After months of stalemate, top lawmakers and the Governor crafted a compromise that splits the difference on the contested issue of business tax cuts.  We’re talking with Statehouse leaders about this hard-won deal, how rank-and-file members reacted, and what might be next.  

GUESTS:

Courtesy NH House of Representatives

The New Hampshire House of Representatives is going through a historic change this summer as it retires its current gavel and the striking post that has seen every House Speaker since George Roberts. The former striking post was made of laminate particle beam, circa 1975, and needed to be replaced after extensive splintering rendered it unable to perform its duty. 

Jennifer Cochran / Flickr/Creative Commons

Amherst Public Works Director Bruce Berry was a happy man last spring when Gov. Maggie Hassan signed the first increase to the state’s gas tax in more than 20 years.

The legislation promised to double the money the state doles out to repair municipally owned bridges, from $6.8 million a year to $13.6 million. At the time, Amherst had three bridges “red-listed” as structurally deficient, including one on Manchester Road that had been closed for 18 months.

Bradley To Democrats: Meet Us Halfway

Jun 8, 2015
NHPR

The New Hampshire Senate voted along party lines last week to pass the $11.3 billion dollar two-year state budget. The budget has been described by Republicans as "conservative, yet compassionate." Democrats say it doesn't go far enough. NHPR's Peter Biello sat down with Senate Majority Leader Jeb Bradley to talk about the budget and what's to come. 

NHPR

The New Hampshire Senate voted along party lines last week to pass the $11.3 billion dollar two-year state budget. Democrats tried repeatedly to restore funding for mental health, winter maintenance and the renewable energy fund—those efforts failed. Efforts to restore funding to substance abuse treatment, elderly care and developmental services were more successful, though funding levels did not reach what Governor Maggie Hassan had proposed.

Kyle Flannery/USFWS / Flickr/CC

A bill proposed by fourth graders from Hampton falls was harshly debated and defeated in the legislature last month, leading to some late-night satire but also a conversation about the best way to get students involved in the democratic process. We’ll look at that and also examine bills this year addressing voter requirements.

GUESTS, VOTER REQUIREMENTS:

Allegra Boverman / NHPR

We'll sit down with Governor Hassan to discuss her budget for the next biennium, the current legislature, and her goals for the next two years.

GUEST:

  • Maggie Hassan - New Hampshire Governor Maggie Hassan, a democrat in her second term.  She’s also a former state senator from Exeter, and a former Senate Majority Leader.

N.H. Legislative Roundup: A Look Ahead To 2015

Jan 5, 2015
ahlasny / Flickr/CC

We sit down with New Hampshire House and Senate leaders to talk about what might be in store this new session. 2015 is a budget year, so expect state spending and revenues to take center stage.  And beyond that, we'll talk about a few of the 800 bill requests have been filed so far, on topics ranging from voter registration to restrictions on drones. 

GUESTS:

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