NH News

NH News
5:31 pm
Wed April 4, 2012

Senate Leaders Unsure About Income Tax Amendment

401k via Flickr

 

The senate is considering a proposed constitutional amendment that would bar a personal income tax.

The amendment passed the house but is facing head-winds in the Senate.

Top Senate Republicans seemed skeptical during a hearing on the income tax ban.

They say they’re focused on putting an education funding constitutional amendment before the voters next fall.

Senate Majority Leader Jeb Bradley put House Majority Leader DJ Bettencourt on the defensive, asking if he thought the House is overwhelming the public with amendments.

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NH News
2:11 pm
Wed April 4, 2012

Senate Returns to Work, Right-to-Work That Is

Speaker William O'Brien
NHPR

The state Senate is expected to vote on Right-to-Work legislation next week.

The measure passed a Senate Committee earlier today.

There’s a déjà vu quality to this bill.

The legislation is the same as last year – a move to exempt workers from paying fees for collective bargaining.

The arguments are the same – supporters say the bill will bring business to the Granite State.

Opponents say it will end up costing New Hampshire jobs, and drive wages down.

Even the politics are similar.

NH News
12:45 pm
Wed April 4, 2012

Dartmouth Names Med School for Dr. Seuss

Audrey and Theodor Seuss Geisel
Photo courtesy of: geiselmed.dartmouth.edu

Dartmouth has named its medical school the Geisel  School of Medicine. The school’s philanthropist namesake is one of the college’s most famous alums: Dr. Seuss. Theodore Geisel did not get his “doctor” title at Dartmouth College – he gave it to himself later as a satirist – but he did pick up his penname, Seuss, at the Ivy League school.

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NH News
4:22 pm
Tue April 3, 2012

House Committee Votes Against Sex Offender Board

After sailing through the Senate, a bill that would have created a ‘Sexual Offender Management Board’ hit a wall in the House today.

The bill calls for the creation of a 19-member board that would evaluate policies toward sex offenders.

Advocate Chris Dornin told the House Criminal Justice Committee that laws are often rushed through after a high-profile child murder or molestation.

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NH News
12:58 pm
Tue April 3, 2012

NH Senate: Axe House Voter Challenge Bill

A Senate Committee has recommended killing a bill passed by the House of Representatives that would make it easier to challenge voters at the polls.

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NH News
8:23 am
Tue April 3, 2012

More Cuts Threaten Legal Services for the Poor

The most recent State budget slashed funding for legal services for the poor. Last week, the House passed a bill that would put even more aid at risk.

The legislation would change how something called IOLTA works.

IOLTA stands for ‘Interest on Lawyers Trust Accounts’.

When a client hands money over to a lawyer for a short period of time, say, while a real estate deal is being closed, the lawyer puts the money into a pooled account. That account earns interest.

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NH News
5:42 pm
Fri March 30, 2012

DOJ: N.H.'s Mental Health System in Crisis

Earlier this week, the U.S. Department of Justice moved to join a federal lawsuit suing New Hampshire over its mental health system.

Government lawyers allege without adequate community-based services, the state is violating the American with Disabilities Act.

The federal government says people with mental illness in New Hampshire are too often forced into institutional settings due to a lack of resources.

New Hampshire’s mental health system isn’t the first state to catch the attention of the federal government.

NH News
5:54 pm
Wed March 28, 2012

Councilors Raise Concerns Over Medicaid Contract

The Executive Council has delayed a vote on the controversial new $2.2 billion dollar managed Medicaid contract.

That's welcome news for many New Hampshire healthcare providers who are concerned about the deal.

Executive Councilors say they too want to know whether managed care will compromise services for the some 130,000 Medicaid recipients in the state.

Dan Gorenstein: Executive Councilor Ray Burton says he’s got thousands of reasons why he wants to slow down signing off on this contract.

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NH News
5:51 pm
Wed March 28, 2012

House Folds on Gaming Bill

Gambling in New Hampshire ran up against a stacked deck in the Statehouse today. 

The House has voted to kill a bill that would have brought four casinos and 14,000 video slot machines to the state. The bill would have used gambling revenue to reduce business taxes.

Supporters urged quick action to offset the recent approval of three casinos in Massachusetts.

"Since Massachusetts passed its own expanded gaming bill, doing nothing is no longer an option," says Representative David Campbell, a Democrat from Nashua.

The House rejected that plan by 40 votes. 

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NH News
5:14 pm
Wed March 28, 2012

EZ-Pass Transponders to Get Cheaper

 

The Department of Transportation announced that the cost of EZ pass transponders will drop by more than half starting in April. The transponders will soon cost $8.90 cents, down from $20.95.

DoT Spokesman Bill Boynton says the drop in price will not only help new EZ pass users, but anyone needing to replace a transponder as well.

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NH News
3:43 pm
Wed March 28, 2012

House Overrides Governor's Veto of Redistricting Plan

The Republican-controlled New Hampshire House has overridden Democratic Governor John Lynch's veto of the House redistricting plan.

The House voted 246-112 Wednesday to send the bill to the Senate which traditionally leaves it to the House to come up with its own plan.

Districts must be redrawn to adjust for population changes over the past decade.

House Speaker Bill O’Brien says more people will get direct representation.

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NH News
7:47 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

U.S. DOJ Joins Mental Health Case

The U.S. Department of Justice has joined a lawsuit against New Hampshire for alleged violations of the state’s mental health system.

Lead plaintiff attorneys welcome the move.

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NH News
7:05 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

State: Primex Deal Possible Game Changer

This week, state regulators reached what they consider a landmark agreement with a group that provides insurance to cities and towns.

State officials believe the deal could change how other so-called public insurance risk pools are run.

Primex, one of three public risk pools in New Hampshire, has agreed to return at least $16 million dollars back to its clients - cities and towns.

The deal comes after regulators determined Primex is holding excess surplus.

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NH News
4:04 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

Transportation Bill Hits Traffic Jam

You can add transportation to the long list of issues hitting a roadblock in Washington. Funding for New Hampshire’s I-93 expansion may get stuck in the beltway traffic jam.

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NH News
5:58 pm
Mon March 26, 2012

Executive Council May Slow Down Managed Care

The Executive Council is scheduled to vote Wednesday on a new Medicaid contract worth an estimated $2.2 billion dollars.

It is believed to be the largest contract in state history.

But signs from an Executive Council meeting today suggest that vote may be pushed back.

The state may struggle to meet its July 1stdeadline.

Dan Gorenstein: This Medicaid contract is huge.

It’s huge financially, handing over several billion dollars to three managed care companies to run the state’s Medicaid program.  

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