SESSION NOTICE: The House will meet on Tuesday, January 9th, 2018, at 9:00 a.m.
The House and Senate will assemble in Joint Convention for Governor Sununu to deliver his State of the
State Address on Thursday, February 15, 2018, at 10:00 a.m. Committee hearings will follow.
Looking ahead, please note the following tentative session days: February 7 (and 8th if necessary); February
22nd, March 7th (and 8th if necessary); March 21st (and 22nd if necessary).
CONCORD – Today, the House passed HB317, prohibiting the public utilities commission from increasing the system benefits charge without legislative approval, by a vote of 173-171. House Majority Leader Dick Hinch (R-Merrimack) and Assistant Majority Leader and prime sponsor of the bill, Rep. Michael Vose (R-Epping), released the following statements:
House Majority Leader Dick Hinch:
“New Hampshire Ratepayers are burdened with some of the highest energy costs in the country. House Republicans remain committed to doing everything in our power to protect the New Hampshire Ratepayer. This bill assures that there is accountability when it comes to the Systems Benefit Charge. I applaud the ST&E committee for the work they have done on this bill and am thrilled to see it pass the House.”
Representative Michael Vose:
“New Hampshire Ratepayers deserve to be able to hold their government accountable and today was a great step in that direction. This bill provides the legislature with the oversight and control needed to prevent a slide into economic stagnation caused by over regulation and excessive taxation.“
Speaker Gene Chandler issued the following statement following Gov. Sununu’s press conference this morning during which he outlined his initiatives for the upcoming legislative session.
“The House is looking forward to continuing our legislative successes of the past session in working closely with Gov. Sununu. Today House and Senate leadership joined the governor in committing to making New Hampshire even more competitive within the New England economy by creating jobs, scaling back on stifling regulations, and ensuring that any new legislation will not impede New Hampshire business from being successful. Our focus will also be on lowering the state’s high energy costs, modernizing our laws to ensure that our citizens have the protections they deserve, advancing policies that will achieve education excellence, and continuing to battle the opioid crisis. I applaud the governor for being proactive in these important areas and I look forward to working with him in the coming session.”
CONCORD- House Majority Leader Dick Hinch (R-Merrimack) and House Education Committee Chairman Rick Ladd (R-Haverhill) released the following statements in response to the passage of SB193, relative to establishing education freedom savings accounts for students, by a vote of 184-162.
“Our state has many successful public schools, but there are times where a student’s public school is not the best fit for them. Students leave their district for academic reasons, bullying, discrimination, and special needs, and this bill gives those children a choice. I applaud Chairman Ladd and the Education committee for their months of hard work, and I look forward to working with the Finance committee as they review the bill in the coming weeks,” said Rep. Dick Hinch.
“This bill contains strong accountability requirements that will ensure the program is run smoothly and effectively. Any fiscal impact to school districts will be very minimal. Education is not one size fits all, and every child in New Hampshire deserves access to a quality education. This bill gives them that opportunity,” said Rep. Rick Ladd.
New Hampshire House Speaker Gene Chandler (R-Bartlett) issued a statement following the announcement that Governor Sununu will not allow consideration of a toll increase.
“I applaud the Governor’s leadership on this issue, and agree with his decision that now is not the time to ask our motorists to pay more at the tolls. This process has been rushed, and we need more time to evaluate what projects need to be done and what projects can be done with existing resources. The legislature will play an important role in our future planning as we review the 10 year highway plan. We look forward to receiving the Governor’s plan and working with him to make sure we are living within our means before anyone proposes to ask drivers in New Hampshire for more of their money.”
CONCORD – Today Speaker Gene G. Chandler (R-Bartlett) announced additional members of his leadership team, and the formation of the Policy Advisory Committee.
“When I ran to be elected speaker, I promised to retain the current leadership, including current chairs and vice chairs, and I have done that. I also promised to add to that leadership and bring more members into the fold. Today I am happy to announce those additions from a diverse and talented cross section of our party to improve the lives of the people of New Hampshire,” said Speaker Chandler.
“The message coming out of the caucus and election in November was one of unity,” he continued. “I believe that in order to have a productive and successful legislative session, we must be unified in order to prove to our constituents that we deserve their vote next November. We have a tall order ahead of us, but I believe with these members on our team, we can meet the challenge.”
Former Speaker Pro-Tempore Sherm Packard (R-Hudson), in his 14th term, will serve as Deputy Speaker. Rep. Barbara Griffin (R-Goffstown), in her 2nd term, will serve as Speaker Pro-Tempore, as well as continue to serve as Chair of Election Law.
Rep. Al Baldasaro (R-Londonderry), Rep. Laurie Sanborn (R-Bedford), and Rep. Victoria Sullivan (R-Manchester) will serve as Assistant Majority Leaders.
Rep. David Bates (R-Windham) and Rep. Greg Hill (R-Northfield) will serve as Assistant Majority Whips.
Rep. Andrew Renzullo (R-Hudson) will serve as Floor Leader.
Speaker Chandler will also be stepping down from his role as Chairman of the Committee on Public Works and Highways. He has appointed Rep. Mark McConkey (R-Freedom) to serve as chairman and Rep. David Milz (R-Derry) to serve as vice chairman.
In addition to these appointments, Speaker Chandler has announced the formation of the Policy Advisory Committee, chaired by Rep. Laurie Sanborn (R-Bedford). Rep. David Bates (R-Windham) will serve the committee as vice chair. This committee will be meeting on a weekly basis to review upcoming legislation, hearings, review bills on the calendar, amendments, and give their input on various issues. The members of this committee are:
Rep. Lino Avellani (R-Sanbornville)
Rep. John Burt (R-Goffstown)
Rep. John Graham (R-Bedford)
Rep. Barbara Griffin (R-Goffstown)
Rep, Mary Griffin (R- Windham)
Rep. Peter Hansen (R-Amherst)
Rep. Dick Hinch (R-Merrimack)
Rep. Kathleen Hoelzel (R-Raymond)
Rep. Phyllis Katsakiores (R-Derry)
Rep. Frank McCarthy (R-Conway)
Rep. Bill Ohm (R-Nashua)
Rep. Sherm Packard (R-Londonderry)
Rep. Andrew Renzullo (R-Hudson)
Background: These members will be additions to the leadership team in place from the 2017 legislative session.
Majority Leader Rep. Dick Hinch (R- Merrimack)
Deputy Majority Leader Rep. John Graham (R-Bedford)
Majority Whip Rep. Kathleen Hoelzel (R-Raymond)
Deputy Majority Whip Rep. Bill Ohm (R-Nashua)
Assistant Majority Leaders Rep. Michael McCarthy (R-Nashua), Rep. Larry Gagne (R-Manchester), Rep. Michael Vose (R-Epping), Rep. David Danielson (R-Bedford)
Assistant Majority Whips Rep. Claire Rouillard (R-Goffstown), Rep. Terry Wolf (R-Bedford), Rep. Carolyn Matthews (R-Raymond), Rep. Debra DeSimone (R-Atkinson)
Text of 2018 legislation is available on the General Court website. There are two ways to find it:
1) Visit http://www.gencourt.state.nh.us/lsr_search/LSR_Results.aspx and click on the link beneath the LSR number to view the bill text.
2) Visit http://gencourt.state.nh.us/bill_Status/ and change the session year 2018. You can then use the advanced search functions to look through 2018 legislation.
Newly elected New Hampshire House Speaker Gene Chandler (R-Bartlett) issued a statement following the election for Speaker during today’s House session. Chandler won a majority of votes cast by House members.
“It’s an honor to have earned the support of my colleagues in the House for this job. We have a lot of important work ahead of us in the coming term. My goals are simple. I will work with all members of the House to formulate responsible, common sense public policy that will improve the lives of the people of New Hampshire. I will work with all members of the Democrat and Republican caucus who share this goal. I will do my best to promote unity within our party, and prove to our constituents that we deserve their vote next November. We have a tall order ahead of us, and I am excited to meet this challenge.”
Chandler first held the office of Speaker from 2000-2004. Most recently, Chandler had served as Deputy Speaker since December 2014 under the Speakership of Shawn Jasper. He served as House Republican (minority) Leader during the 2013-2014 term, and has held several other leadership posts, including Chairman of the House Public Works & Highways committee over the course of his 18 term tenure in the New Hampshire House.
For twenty-three of the past thirty-three years, it has been an honor and a privilege to serve as a member of the New Hampshire House. I am proud to have had the opportunity to represent my constituents in Hudson and Pelham, and I will forever be grateful for their continued support. To my friends and colleagues in the House, please know what a pleasure it has been to serve as your Speaker. Together, we have helped to make the state stronger and better equipped to deal with the challenges of the future.
Although I will miss continuing this journey with you, I am excited to begin serving the state in a different capacity – and in an area that is close to my heart. Since one of my duties as Commissioner of Agriculture will be to monitor issues that affect the state’s agricultural community, I will still be involved with the Legislative Branch in that regard and provide input when necessary. I look forward to working with you on those occasions and seeing you from time to time in the State House Complex.
It has been an incredible time in my life, and I am blessed to leave the State House with so many special memories and wonderful friendships. I will always have the greatest respect for my legislative colleagues and cannot begin to express how fortunate we are to have such a truly exceptional staff. Thank you all for your service to the state. I wish you a wonderful holiday season and much health and happiness in the New Year.
Shawn N. Jasper, Speaker