The Bulletin Board

‘Veto Day’ scheduled for Jan. 5 and 6

By: - November 16, 2021 12:46 pm
State House on a cloudy day

The Legislature reconvenes Jan. 5 to take up more than 900 bills. (Dana Wormald | New Hampshire Bulletin)

It won’t be one day, but two, and there won’t be many vetoes to speak of. But after months of delay, New Hampshire’s “Veto Day” finally has a calendar date. 

Lawmakers in the House and Senate will be returning Jan. 5 and 6 to take up the seven vetoes issued by Gov. Chris Sununu over the summer and determine whether they will be overridden. 

But the sessions won’t end there. The lawmakers will also be voting on 121 other bills that were held back at the end of the legislative year, electing or re-electing the secretary of state and state treasurer, and distributing the new bills for 2022 into their respective committees. 

The scheduling has bucked tradition. Typically, Veto Day is held in September, after the last of the bills have crossed the governor’s desk. 

With a Legislature dominated by his own party this year, Sununu did not veto much this year. But four of the bills are worth watching. 

House Bill 334 and Senate Bill 141 would each eliminate New Hampshire’s Gun Line, the firearms background check system operated by the New Hampshire State Police, and replace it with the FBI background check system. House Bill 98 would move New Hampshire’s state primary – one of the latest in the country – from September to August. And Senate Bill 38 would allow the state’s cannabis dispensaries, known as “alternative treatment centers,” to register as companies; they currently must be structured as nonprofits. 

It’s unclear where the sessions will be held. A spokeswoman for the Speaker’s Office said House leadership is still making a decision on location. 

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Ethan DeWitt
Ethan DeWitt

Ethan DeWitt is the New Hampshire Bulletin’s education reporter. Previously, he worked as the New Hampshire State House reporter for the Concord Monitor, covering the state, the Legislature, and the New Hampshire presidential primary. A Westmoreland native, Ethan started his career as the politics and health care reporter at the Keene Sentinel.