Governor Unveils Budget Feb. 14
House, Senate hold joint convention Thursday for Maggie Hassan's budget address.
Gov. Maggie Hassan delivers her recommended budget before a joint convention of the New Hampshire House and Senate on Thursday. It is a two-year state budget, and how the billions of dollars are appropriated will occupy the Legislature for the next four and a half months.
In her inaugural speech, Hassan reiterated campaign promises to support an "innovation economy" and craft a balanced budget. How will it be funded? Hassan has vowed to veto any income tax or sales tax. She's embraced a limited expansion of gambling, with a casino possibly along the Massachusetts border. What else is in the package? Stay tuned...
The full House meets in session Wednesday, 10 a.m. The Senate convenes a session Thursday.
Another right-to-work bill. The proposed Franklin Partin right-to-work act seeks to prohibit unions from collecting “agency fees” from employees when they choose not to belong to the union. The House is scheduled to vote on House Bill 323 on Wednesday. A committee’s majority report recommends the bill be killed. The minority report, a blurb written by Rep. Gary Daniels (R-Milford), notes in part, “The minority believes that unions who take care of their members should have no concerns should this bill pass.”
Screaming Eagles. The Senate, when it meets in session after the governor’s budget address on Thursday, will vote on Senate Bill 15, which would name Route 101 from Manchester to Hampton Beach as the 101st Airborne Division Screaming Eagles. A committee unanimously supports the designation.
Voter ID dismantling. This bill would repeal changes requiring photo identification of voters scheduled to take effect Sept. 1, 2013. Sen. Bette Lasky (D-Nashua) and Rep. Joel Winters (D-Nashua) are two of the sponsors. The bill would repeal certain components of the law, such as the requirement to place digital cameras and printers at polling locations.
Ode to Governor John Gilbert Winant. The House on Wednesday is expected to pass a bill that would study the construction of a memorial to Governor Winant on state property - but not on the Statehouse grounds. Winant was raised in Concord and attended St. Paul’s School. The World War I veteran served in the state Legislature before, in 1925, became the youngest governor in the states. He was also U.S. Ambassador to Britain (and had an affair with Churchill’s daughter...) HB 262 is on the consent calendar.
Historical Shout-out, Part II: House Public Works and Highways will hold a public hearing Tuesday on a bill that would make a capital appropriation for construction of a monument commemorating the 400th anniversary of the discovery of the Isles of Shoals by John Smith. The hearing is scheduled for 10:45 a.m. in Room 201 of the Legislative Office Building.
Franklin who? House Bill 576 would establish Franklin Pierce Day. A public hearing on that bill is Thursday, 1 p.m., in LOB Room 306.
Civil War battle flags. A Senate committee will hear a bill Wednesday, 9:15 a.m., that proposes the state liquor commission produce Civil War commemorative bottles. Hearing’s in Room 100 of the Statehouse. According to the bill as introduced, revenue would fund preservation of the Civil War battle flags displayed at the Statehouse. House Speaker Terie Norelli (D-Portsmouth) is one of the bill sponsors.
High Wire Act. The House Science, Technology and Energy Committee is meeting in Representatives Hall on Tuesday for a handful of bills, including a bill that would require new electric transmission lines in the state to be buried. Committee convenes at 10 a.m.
Legalize it? House Criminal Justice and Public Safety hears three marijuana-related bills in public hearing Thursday, starting at 1 p.m. They are: HB492, relative to the legalization and regulation of marijuana, HB 337, legalizing marijuana and cannabis, and HB 621, decriminalizing possession of less than one ounce of marijuana. LOB Room 204.