State House

John H. Sununu announces he will not challenge Jeanne Shaheen in the 2014 US Senate race; former Senator Scott Brown visited New Hampshire this weekend, but is not saying yet if he intends to make a Senate run in NH; other possibilities for 2014 include Frank Guinta and Jeb Bradley.

The House passes their budget, which does not include gambling, but funds some of Governor Hassan's priorities, such as mental health and higher education; the budget-writing process now moves to the Senate, where it is likely to see numerous changes; the Senate hears several high-profile bills this week, including a reinstatement of the state minimum wage; Scott Brown announces he "would not rule out" a Senate run in NH.

The House votes this week on their State budget bill; an as-yet-introduced amendment to the casino bill seeks to limit any future casino from competing with the Verizon Wireless Arena with a large audience entertainment venue; gambling looks to have staying power in the legislative budget process.

The House votes on the "Stand Your Ground" repeal, which would again require people to attempt to retreat before using deadly force, and a bill to increase the state's gas tax; gambling remains a heavily-debated issue, with differing proposals in the House and Senate, and one that could be affected by who replaces Michael Delaney as Attorney General.

Some key votes are coming up within a busy House docket: the tobacco tax increase, expected to pass, but at less than the Governor's proposed level; freezing the second phase of the Voter ID law, halting provisions set to take effect this fall that would eliminate some of the current acceptable forms of identification, namely college students' school IDs; a change of the "Stand Your Ground" law, reinstating the requirement that people make an effort to retreat before using deadly force.

The casino proposal faces its first major vote this week, is expected to pass in the Senate; the gas tax comes before the House Ways & Means Committee; medical marijuana legislation may have new life with Governor Hassan in the corner office; the House works on a revised budget.

As the NH house readies to vote on a 15 cent increase to the state’s gas tax, Former house speaker Bill O’Brien is pushing to ensure all gas tax money pays for infrastructure.  

Former House speaker Bill O’Brien knows something about diverting gas tax revenue to pay for things other than roads. The state budget he passed as speaker did just that, as so have pretty much every state budget in memory.

But now, as the House stands ready to increase gas taxes for the first time since 1991, O'Brien says it’s time for the practice to stop.

Votes are expected in the House this week on whether the state will allow the building of one casino, as outlined in Governor Hassan's budget, and the proposed raise to the gas tax; The House Finance Committee gets to work on the budget.

The New Hampshire House votes this week on whether to raise the gas tax for the first time since 1991; considerations over this proposed tax and expanded gambling will affect implementation of the governor's budget.

Commissioner Christopher Clement of NH DOT testifies before the House committee
Jonathan Lynch / NHPR

The House Committee on Public Works and Highways held a hearing on a bill that would increase the state's gas tax and vehicle registration fees.

The bill would raise 800 million dollars over eight years in new revenue by increasing the state's gas tax by 12 cents over three years and tacking on five dollars to vehicle registration fees.

Representative David Campbell, the bill's primary sponsor, urged lawmakers to pass the legislation, arguing that New Hampshire's transportation infrastructure is in a state of crisis:

Courtesy photo

StateImpact NH reporter Emily Corwin is live blogging Governor Maggie Hassan's budget address this morning from the state house.

Taking a look at how Governor Maggie Hassan handled her first weather-related test in the recent storm and what may be coming up in her budget proposal, being introduced on Thursday; Representative Annie Kuster's tax delinquency troubles.

The Local Government Center looks to replace its executive director; a look at bills that are coming down the pipe, including a bill to allow businesses to receive tax credits for donating private and home school scholarship funds, and a repeal of the Voter ID law.

The New Hampshire Republican Party voted this past Saturday and chose former Congressional candidate Jennifer Horn to be their latest chairperson; and a repeal of the "Stand Your Ground" law comes up before committee in the House of Representatives.

New Hampshire Republicans are set to choose their new leaders; Governor Hassan prepares her budget proposal, amidst debate over increased gambling; David Campbell's projection to raise infrastructure funds through an increase to the gas tax and vehicle registration fees; and the House looks at N.H.'s "Stand Your Ground" law.

The legislature starts hearing bills this week. On the agenda are Medicaid expansion, straight ticket voting, 911-related immunity; off the table is an education funding amendment

A look at the inaugural address of Governor Maggie Hassan. The N.H. House opens with a fight over guns, and lawmakers begin thinking about the next state budget.

We have a roundtable of State House and Senate leaders, on what’s in store for this new Legislative session.  Democrats, who take the reins in both the corner office and the House, are already aiming to modify or repeal some of the changes passed by the GOP last session, including on guns and voter ID…we’ll look at that, and  at the biannual budget process…already underway.

Guests

N.H. House Bans Guns From Floor And Gallery

Jan 2, 2013

The New Hampshire House has voted to 196-153 to ban deadly weapons from Representatives Hall.

Michael Brindley, NHPR

1:00: Hassan closing remarks: "Addressing our challenges will not be easy. It will be hard. But we are Granite Staters and Americans and we are supposed to do hard things. The question is whether we will live up to the grand vision that our founders had. Remember, the notion that we could operate as a true citizen democracy while also becoming an economic force in the world was, at the time, a revolutionary one...

In this time and in this place, let's choose to move our state forward with the optimism and pragmatism that is our hallmark. With "gladness of heart," let's choose to remember what a gift it is to be citizens of the Granite State."

Brady Carlson / NHPR

It's called Organization Day at the Statehouse - it's the day lawmakers are sworn in, leaders are elected, and, as they say, the future is yet unwritten.

NHPR's political reporter Josh Rogers joins All Things Considered host Brady Carlson with more on the House and Senate leaders and whether their calls for a new tone in the legislature were comments on the previous legislative session.

Sara Plourde / NHPR

Races for State House and Senate were still wrapping up early this morning. Republicans lost some ground in the House, but we’re still learning how many seats were gained by Democrats.To start with, the Speaker of the House, Bill O’Brien, was reelected. He finished second to a Democrat in a two-member district.

WMUR Granite State Poll / UNH Survey Center

The second in a series of polls out this week from WMUR and the UNH Survey Center predicts that Democrats will win the governorship and majorities in both the House and Senate.

This is the fourth poll in a row that shows a widening lead for Democrats in the “generic ballot” question: that’s to say “will you be voting for the Democrat or the Republican in your local House or Senate race?”

WMUR Granite State Poll

The latest WMUR Granite State Poll predicts that if the election were held tomorrow, New Hampshire Democrats would win a majority in the State House and the Senate.

UNH survey center pollster Andy Smith says his model predicts 14 Democrats and 10 Republicans in the Senate, and 204 Democrats to 196 Republicans in the House.

Governor Stubs Medical Marijuana Law

Jun 21, 2012
DJWhelan / Flickr Creative Commons

Gov. John Lynch has made no secret of his opposition to medical marijuana in the state. He says Senate Bill 409 poses health dangers to patients, lacks oversight and could lead to more pot in the hands of minors.

The governor vetoed a similar measure in 2009.

Sara Plourde / NHPR

We sit down with a panel of Statehouse leaders to discuss the 2012 Legislative year.  We’ll hear from top members of the State House and State Senate about what they say are their biggest accomplishments and disappointments of this session.  We’ll also get their thoughts on how what happened at the Statehouse this year will affect what happens at the ballot box this fall. 

Guests

Sara Plourde / NHPR

Enacting any constitutional amendment is tough. It requires a three-fifths vote by both House and Senate, and two-thirds support from voters at the polls.  Add to this the fact this amendment deals with school funding and that lawmakers have killed 80-odd  Claremont-inspired amendments over the past 14 years, and the guardedness of even the boldest of lawmakers is understandable.

A Statehouse Check-in

Jun 2, 2012
NHPR

June’s longer days also signal the end of the legislative session, but critical votes remain before the summer break.   The House and Senate have been trying to work out their differences on some difficult policy issues and on top of that, the House had a sudden change in its leadership team, with the resignation of Majority Leader D.J. Bettencourt.  We'll get the latest on what's going on at the Statehouse as lawmakers wrap up their final month of law making.  

Guests

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/elizabeth_albert/4998473663/sizes/m/in/photostream/">Elizabeth Albert</a> / Flickr

Legislative leaders and the governor have reached a deal on language for an education funding constitutional amendment.

Politics usually take a break over Memorial Day weekend, but not this year in New Hampshire. State House Majority Leader DJ Bettencourt abruptly resigned after admitting he had falsified documents for a law school internship.

NHPR’s Josh Rogers tells All Things Considered host Brady Carlson about the latest on the Bettencourt story, the potential political fallout for House Speaker William O'Brien, and the newly named majority leader, Rep. Pete Silva of Nashua.

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