News

A view of the NH Senate chamber

Senate OKs earlier state primary date, limits on governor’s emergency powers, PFAS protections

BY: - May 27, 2021

In a Senate session on Thursday, lawmakers approved proposals to move the primary from September to August, limit the governor’s emergency powers, and increase PFAS protections and funding. As senators approach the end of the session, they are up against a June 3 deadline to act on all pending legislation. Election law Two election law […]

A woman holds signs opposing legislation in front of the New Hampshire state house

Senate committee adds amended ‘divisive concepts’ language to state budget

BY: - May 27, 2021

A key Senate committee moved forward an amended version of the “divisive concepts” bill, adding it to the New Hampshire budget and setting up another test for Gov. Chris Sununu.  In a 4-2, party-line vote, Republicans on the Finance Committee voted to insert an amended version of the legislation into the budget trailer bill, adding […]

Solar panels on a building roof with a cupola

Essential information about energy usage in the state is elusive, and that’s a costly problem

BY: - May 27, 2021

When April Salas set out to acquire information about energy usage in Hanover, she was in for an uphill battle. Salas is the sustainability director of the town, population 11,500, which has the resources to consider such a project. In 2018, Hanover decided to put together a program that would allow it to procure green […]

State House dome blocks out the sun

School voucher program added to budget

BY: - May 26, 2021

A controversial proposal to allow New Hampshire parents to use public funds for private school tuition will move ahead next month, after the Senate Finance Committee added the program to the state budget. Voting along party lines Wednesday, the committee attached the proposal, known as the “education freedom account” program, to House Bill 2, the […]

A bible rests on a table with a cross necklace

‘Religious liberty’ bill amended to address discrimination concerns

BY: - May 26, 2021

An amended version of a “religious liberty” bill up for a Senate vote Thursday preserves a church’s right to stay open during a future state of emergency but eliminates what civil rights advocates said would allow for discrimination on religious grounds. Rep. Keith Ammon, a New Boston Republican and House Bill 542’s sponsor, supports the […]

Planned Parenthood sign on a brick building

Senators remove one abortion restriction from budget, shifting focus to Executive Council

BY: - May 26, 2021

This article was updated May 26, 2021 at 3:30 p.m. to correct the spelling of Ben Vihstadt’s name. A last-minute amendment to the Senate’s budget would keep a 24-week abortion ban but exempt providers from using separate space and staff for abortion services, a requirement reproductive health clinics said would seriously jeopardize care for 12,000 […]

An empty school playground

‘Families deserve a remedy’: Bill would allow lawsuits against school districts in bullying cases

BY: - May 26, 2021

The bullying started on the school bus in kindergarten. It continued for years, repeating nearly daily.  Shannon Bouchard knew her daughter, who has a speech disorder, was being occasionally teased on the bus by a bully. But she also thought the school had a handle on it. “I thought it would stop,” Bouchard, who lives […]

State house dome

Sununu vetoes bill banning jet skis near coastal marshlands

BY: - May 25, 2021

On Tuesday, Gov. Chris Sununu issued his first veto of the session – shooting down House Bill 184, which would have banned jet skis within 300 feet of marshlands at the Rye estuary and the New Castle back channel. In his veto message, Sununu said the protection was unnecessary because the area does not experience […]

Closeup of handcuffs

Bill barring release of mug shots approved by Judiciary Committee

BY: - May 25, 2021

Senators on the Judiciary Committee approved a measure Tuesday that would bar police from releasing most mug shots after arrests, in a 3-2 committee vote that defied party lines.  House Bill 125 would still allow police departments to take post-arrest photographs of accused perpetrators. But the bill would prohibit the release of the mug shots […]

Pro-choice protesters hold up signs

Senate committee passes bill banning abortions after 24 weeks

BY: - May 25, 2021

In a 3-2 party-line vote Tuesday, the Senate Judiciary Committee passed a bill banning nearly all abortions after 24 weeks, even in the case of rape or incest. It is at least the sixth such abortion restriction bill introduced in the last 10 years and the only one to reach the Senate. Three prior attempts […]

A view of the State House in Concord.

Democrats: Strike ‘divisive concepts’ language from the budget

BY: - May 25, 2021

On Tuesday, Democrats said that cutting House Bill 544 out of the state’s biennial budget would be nonnegotiable in Wednesday’s budget session. Senate Republicans will introduce their version of the budget policy bill on Wednesday and vote on it during the same session. HB 544 – a proposal that would ban teaching and training around […]

Manny Espitia

Targeted by white supremacists, lawmaker seeks solidarity

BY: - May 25, 2021

Early last week, Rep. Manny Espitia’s friend – Nashua Alderman Tom Lopez – told him that white supremacists had left a tag on a community mural near the rail trail, in a neighborhood that is predominantly Latino. The messages included “Keep New England White,” “Defend New England,” and “Death to Israel.” Espitia’s first reaction was […]