State House Watch: April 28, 2024

By Maggie Fogarty, Grace Kindeke and Kathleen Wooten

“They’ll say we’re disturbing the peace, but there is no peace. What really bothers them is that we are disturbing the war.” – Howard Zinn

April 28, 2024

Dear State House Watchers,

It's almost May Day, a global holiday to acknowledge and celebrate the rights of workers, and the hard-fought struggle for worker dignity and protections. In recent decades, May Day has also become an occasion to honor the extraordinary contributions of immigrant workers to our society. Join the NH Alliance for Immigrants and Refugees and other allies – including AFSC – for a NH celebration in front of the State House, on Main Street in Concord, this coming Wednesday, May 1 at 5 PM. Share the Facebook event to invite your friends!

Speaking of workers, we are wow-ed by the powerful testimony of Dartmouth College student workers (and a UNH student worker who submitted written testimony) during last week’s House Labor Committee public hearing on SB 517, a bill that would erode the rights of campus workers and, as one student testified, “legally delegitimize the important work of residential assistants.” You can listen to the hearing here (starting at 00:33:55) with the student testimony in opposition to the bill starting at 1:12:00. We’re sure you’ll be inspired by their clear, compelling testimony and their spirited call for justice and fair treatment. Fast forward to 1:42:50 for more excellent testimony in opposition, from Rev. Dr. Gail Kinney and then Claudia Istel of the UCC Economic Justice Mission Group.

Thanks to Arnie Alpert for his coverage of the ongoing struggle for fair contracts at Dartmouth College as some student worker unions make incremental gains, and the university’s management team refuses to negotiate with the college’s basketball team. Read more here.

We’re pleased to see efforts underway in Exeter, NH to draw attention to the story of Jude Hall, a Black resident who was granted freedom from slavery after serving in the Revolutionary War, but whose sons were later kidnapped into slavery. Read more here.

Advocacy to defend the rights and well-being of transgender persons continues in earnest throughout this legislative session, in response to ongoing attacks. We appreciate this thoughtful editorial from Dover resident Alice Wade of 603 Equality: Inherited hatred and how to stop it“For years I thought I was an awful person for feeling like I didn’t belong in my own skin, for feeling different. If only I had known sooner that I wasn’t alone, that there was a name for what I was going through and a solution. I would’ve been able to give myself the opportunity to live happily throughout high school, but I never got the chance. Learning about what it is to be part of the LGBTQ+ community at a young age isn’t just beneficial for kids who are gay or trans. It also helps straight and cisgender kids learn that it’s not something to make fun of, and they grow up to be more accepting adults.”

We also recommend this op-ed by Rev. Heidi Carrington Heath with Seacoast Outright: Our kids deserve better“All of our kids deserve to be safe at school. They deserve confidential access to safe adults to process their coming out stories and identities on their own terms. They deserve access to spaces and places they need to thrive. All of our kids deserve the protective factors that come with being part of a team sport. What young person doesn’t hope for a deeper sense of belonging, the camaraderie of their peers, and a chance to excel at something? This is an essential piece of growing up.”

Read here for an update on two anti-LGBTQ+ bills which had public hearings in House Education Committee last week, SB 375, relative to biological sex in student athletics, and SB 341, relative to mandatory disclosure by school district employees to parents, both of which have passed the full Senate. And read here for an update on two anti-transgender bills that had public hearings in Senate Judiciary, HB 396, permitting classification of individuals based on biological sex under certain limited circumstances, and HB 619, requiring a person to attain the age of majority for genital gender reassignment surgery. More here.

We appreciate all who have raised their voices in recent weeks in defense of public education, and in opposition to the proposed “306 Rules,” hich are the minimum standards. Read more herehere, and here. From the Concord Monitor: “Micaela Demeter, a Dover School Board member, said April 3 that the proposed changes would ‘walk back the state’s responsibility to define an adequate education, which then absolves the state of its future responsibility to pay for that adequate education….If this responsibility is largely left to local school boards, an adequate education may look different in each district, thereby exacerbating the deep inequities we know exist in our state at this time,’ she said. This ‘absolution of responsibility’ puts more burden on property taxpayers who are already funding more than 70 percent of local school costs, she said. Among objections from the Dover School Board, Demeter said, is shifting language from ‘teaching students’ to ‘facilitating learning,’ which she said is vague and could remove the expectation that qualified teachers must be the ones orchestrating classroom content.”


Support Immigrant Communities
SUPPORT HB 1054-A, which would remove the phrase "non-lapsing" from the funding for the Northern Border Alliance program and SUPPORT HB 1528, which would require additional data collection for the Northern Border Alliance Program. Unfortunately, the Senate Finance Committee has recommended ITL for both bills (5-2). The full Senate will vote on both bills on Thursday, May 2. Please contact your own Senator and urge them to pass these bills.

OPPOSE SB 563, relative to federal immigration enforcement. This year’s ‘anti-sanctuary cities’ bill would require NH law enforcement to engage in federal immigration enforcement. We’re dismayed that the House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee voted OTP-A (11-9). The full House will vote on this harmful bill on Thursday, May 2. Please urge your Representatives to oppose this bill which will make immigrants less safe in our communities.

Support Justice for Victims at YDC 
SUPPORT SB 591-FN-A, modifying definitions, claims procedures, and funding relating to the youth development center settlement fund and claims administration. This bill increases the caps on settlement awards and expands the scope of conduct covered by the settlement agreement. The full House will vote on this bill on Thursday, May 2. Please urge your Representatives to support this bill.

Protect LGBTQ+ Rights 
OPPOSE SB 341, relative to mandatory disclosure by school district employees to parents. This ‘forced outing’ bill will go to the full House for a vote on Thursday, May 2. Please urge your Representatives to oppose this bill.

OPPOSE HB 1205, relative to women's school sports. This bill requires schools to designate athletics by sex and prohibits biological males from participating in female athletics. It also creates various causes of action based on violations of the provisions in the bill. This harmful bill has a public hearing in Senate Education, Room 101, SH on Tuesday, April 30 at 9 AM. Please contact the committee, and sign in to oppose and share testimony.

Protect Tenant Rights 
OPPOSE HB 1115, relative to the termination of tenancy at the expiration of the tenancy or lease term.  This harmful bill would erode tenant protections by expanding the definition of “just cause” for eviction to include the completion of the lease period. The full Senate will vote on this bill on Thursday, May 2. Please contact your own Senator and urge them to defeat this bill.

Defend Nonviolent Protest
OPPOSE SB 439, prohibiting discriminatory boycotts of Israel in state procurement and investments. Read more about this problematic bill in Maggie’s recent op-ed for the Concord Monitor. The House Executive Departments and Administration Committee recommends ITL (14-6) and the full House will vote on Thursday, May 2. Please urge your Representatives to defeat the bill.

Support Disaster Relief
SUPPORT HB 1466-FN, relative to providing disaster relief funding to municipalities after a natural disaster. This bill authorizes disaster relief aid for municipalities that suffer certain damage in natural disasters. This positive bill has a public hearing in Senate Finance, Room 103, SH on Tuesday, April 30 at 1:30 PM. Please contact the committee, and sign in to support and share testimony.  

Ceasefire – and Divestment – Now

We’re encouraged by student leaders at the University of New Hampshire who are calling upon the university administration to divest from Israeli-based companies and other businesses contributing to Israel’s war on Gaza. Read more here

These students join a growing and diverse community of campus organizers throughout the country who, in the great tradition of social justice movements, are exercising their free speech rights and using the tools of nonviolent resistance including calls for divestment. We’re alarmed by the actions of administrators at many institutions including Columbia, Yale, Emory and the University of Texas (Austin) to crackdown on these protests with law enforcement who are authorized to use force against their students, faculty and staff. Read more here.

Recommended Reading

A Brief Review of Incarceration Data in New Hampshire – NH Center for Justice and Equity (April  22, 2024) – “In New Hampshire’s state prisons, 7% of the population is Black, while less than 2% of the overall population in NH is Black. Similarly, 6% of the state prison population is Hispanic, while the Hispanic population overall in NH is 4%. The disparities become even more pronounced when examining the county jails. Black and Hispanic individuals collectively account for 25% of the overall jail population, yet despite making up less than 6% of New Hampshire’s resident population.”

Republicans have made illegal immigration a top issue in NH – sometimes with misinformation – Annmarie Timmins, NH Bulletin (April 22, 2024) – “Gov. Chris Sununu has put nearly $2.3 million into tackling what he calls an illegal immigration crisis on two fronts: $1.4 million for a law enforcement task force along the state’s 58-mile border with Canada, and $850,000 toward this month’s deployment of 15 National Guard troops to Eagle Pass, Texas. Meanwhile, Republican lawmakers and candidates are making illegal immigration a top issue in the State House and along the campaign trail, often making their case with misinformation and untested anecdotal evidence.... But are those concerns backed up by data and facts? Often no, and in some cases data contradicts illegal immigration claims.”

Op-Ed: Hydrogen is not the answer – Rebecca Beaulieu for Foster’s Daily Democrat (April 28, 2024) – “If Granite Shore Power is actually committed to transitioning their facilities into a newer, cleaner energy future that is good for economic growth as well as community health, they would not waste time pursuing ‘clean hydrogen’ or ‘green biofuels.’ Those are simply dirty fuel sources hiding behind the words ‘clean’ and ‘green’ to attempt to convince you they will not have dangerous side-effects on the communities hosting those energy facilities.”

Last Week at the State House

LOB – Legislative Office Building (33 N. State St. Concord)
SH – State House (107 N. Main St. Concord)
OTP – “Ought to Pass,” the recommendation for approving a bill or an amendment
OTP/A – Ought to Pass with Amendment
ITL – “Inexpedient to Legislate,” the recommendation for defeating a bill or an amendment. 
ITL” can also be used as a verb.
“Without Recommendation” - This indicates that the committee vote was a tie for both ITL and OTP.  During the House session, these bills will be considered first as Ought to Pass.
Re-refer – When a Senate committee wishes to hold onto a bill for further consideration. The recommendation to re-refer must be approved in the full Senate. The committee will have until the end of the calendar year to meet about the bill and make a recommendation for further action. 
VV – Voice vote. Votes are not counted.
RC – Roll call vote. Each legislator’s vote is recorded and attributed to them.
DV – Division vote. Votes are counted but not attributed to individual legislators.

Last week in the House 
The full House did not meet in session last week.   

Last Week in the Senate 
The Senate did not meet in session last week. 

Next Week in the House
The full House will meet in session on Thursday, May 2. You can watch here. They also plan to meet on May 9, May 23 and May 30. It is possible they will also meet on May 22 if an additional day is needed to complete work on Senate bills. 

On the Consent Calendar

SB 407-FN, relative to direct pay for ambulance services. This bill requires insurers to directly reimburse ambulance service providers at the usual and customary rate for such services or at the rate negotiated by the insurer and ambulance service provider. Committee recommends OTP-A.


SB 362, relative to body-worn cameras. This bill clarifies the circumstances in which body-worn cameras may be copied, distributed, or used in certain criminal, juvenile, or administrative proceedings. Committee recommends OTP.

SB 420, relative to requiring an additional report from the legislative study committee concerning the long-term impact of the New Hampshire adult parole system. Committee recommends OTP.
SB 424,  relative to reductions of maximum sentences while on parole. This bill requires the supervising probation/parole officer to conduct an annual review of his or her parole caseload to identify and present parolees to the adult parole board for reduction of the parolee's maximum sentence and provides additional factors for the parole board to consider when determining whether to grant a reduction of a parolee's maximum sentence. Committee recommends OTP.

SB 564, relative to crimes involving child sexual abuse images. This bill expands the definition of "child" under the child sexual abuse images statute to include those images that are portrayed to be a person under the age of 18 and are thus indistinguishable from a child. Committee recommends OTP.
SB 578, relative to criminal pretrial services and monitoring. This bill prohibits criminal defendants on pretrial release from being required to pay for pretrial services or monitoring, including electronic monitoring, with the cost instead to be paid by the court where the defendant is charged or through appropriations to the agency performing the pretrial services and monitoring.  This bill further requires the agency performing the pretrial services and monitoring to use the least restrictive interventions that are necessary unless otherwise ordered by the court.  Committee recommends interim study.

 SB 591, modifying definitions, claims procedures, and funding relating to the youth development center settlement fund and claims administration. From the committee report: “This bill was brought forward after extensive negotiations and agreement between the Attorney General and attorneys representing over 1100 of the approaching 1400 survivors of childhood abuse at the Youth Development Center and related facilities. This bill will amend RSA 21-M:11-a which established a Youth Development Center Claims Administration Fund, and modify definitions, claims procedures, and funding therein. It expands the scope of conduct covered under the administrative process; increases the caps on settlement awards from the fund, while providing the administrator discretion to award settlements in installment payments; and makes changes to the administrative process designed to speed up the process, while preserving the administrators’ flexibility to administer the process. The committee unanimously agreed that though there is no amount of money that can compensate the victims for the harms suffered, this bill will benefit many child abuse survivors who have avoided the current process because of its limited scope, low caps on recovery, and overly complex procedures.” Committee recommends OTP.


SB 217, establishing a rural and underserved area educator incentive program for higher education and making an appropriation therefor. Committee recommends OTP-A

SB 338, relative to the education professional standards board. Committee recommends OTP-A.

SB 339, relative to repealing the graduation requirement regarding Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) applications. This bill removes requirements that students file a free application for federal student aid form (FAFSA) or a waiver for such form prior to graduation, and removes all references to the FAFSA.  Committee recommends ITL.

SB 374,  relative to the licensing of part-time teachers. This bill defines "part-time teacher." Committee recommends ITL.

SB 375,  relative to biological sex in student athletics. This bill requires school sports teams to be expressly designated as male, female, or coed, and prohibits biologically male students from participating in female designated sports or entering female locker rooms. Committee recommends referral for interim study.

SB 377,  establishing the achieving a better life experience (ABLE) savings account program administrative fund. Committee recommends OTP.

SB 442,  relative to student eligibility for education freedom accounts. This bill would increase the annual income threshold for an Education Freedom Account (EFA) from 350% to 400% of the federal poverty guidelines, extend the period of phase-out grants from 2026 to 2029, reduce the amount the scholarship organization may retain for administrative purposes from a maximum of 10% to 8%, and provide that EFA students may enroll in public school academic courses in grades 7-12 with the public school receiving an additional 0.15 pupil cost for each course taken by the EFA student. Committee recommends ITL.

SB 409,  relative to reimbursement for ambulance services under the state Medicaid plan. This bill directs the department of health and human services to submit an amendment to the state Medicaid plan regarding reimbursement for ambulance services. Committee recommends OTP-A.

SB 404, relative to expanding childcare professionals' eligibility for the childcare scholarship program. Committee recommends OTP-A.

On the Regular Calendar

SB 359,  raising the age of marriage to 18 years of age. This bill changes the minimum age for marriage from 16 to 18 years of age. Committee recommends OTP. 
SB 417,  relative to out-of-home placements for children. This bill revises criteria for out-of-home placement of children under the child protection act and other juvenile statutes and establishes an order of preference based on placement with the child's siblings, when possible, and proximity to the child's community of origin. Committee recommends OTP-A.

SB 248, relative to bail for a defendant. This bill amends the statute governing bail and pretrial release to include provisions for pretrial detention for commission of certain offenses that would create a presumption that the defendant is a danger to the public. Committee recommends interim study.
SB 316, establishing a penalty for a person who transports fentanyl class drugs into New Hampshire with the intent to distribute. This bill establishes a crime and mandatory minimum penalty for transporting into New Hampshire with the intent to distribute fentanyl class drugs. From the committee report: “Mandatory minimums are a vestige of the failed war on drugs through which our country tried to criminalize and incarcerate our way out of the drug problems plaguing our communities. We now know, through multiple studies over the past four decades, that mandatory minimum penalties do nothing to reduce crime, drug sales, drug arrests, or overdose rates. In fact, mandatory minimums may actually increase crime because harsh mandatory minimum penalties increase the length of time a person stays in prison, and we know there is relationship between longer stays and recidivism. Moreover, mandatory minimum sentences defeat the purpose of sentencing by taking discretion away from judges and giving it to prosecutors who use the threat of these lengthy punishments to frustrate defendants asserting their constitutional rights.” Without recommendation. 
SB 376,  relative to establishing a corrections education and vocational planning group. Without recommendation. 
SB 414, relative to establishing a mandatory minimum sentence for the crime of distribution of a controlled drug with death resulting. Without recommendation. 
SB 563, relative to federal immigration enforcement. This bill prohibits state and local government entities from adopting sanctuary policies to prohibit or impede the enforcement of federal immigration law. From the committee’s minority report: “It was pointed out to us that the bill conflicts with New Hampshire’s Fair and Impartial Policing Standards, which specifically address the issue of immigration detainers and don’t permit New Hampshire State Police (NHSP) officers to hold someone based on an immigration detainer. The State Police, the Police Standards and Training Council (PTSC), the New Hampshire Department of Justice as well as other New Hampshire law enforcement agencies are aware of the unconstitutionality of seizing a person based on immigration detainers, which are issued by immigration officers, not judges. In addition to law enforcement, also opposing the bill was a broad coalition including the Catholic Archdiocese, The NH Immigrants Rights Network, the American Friends Services Committee, and ACLU-NH. The bottom line is that the minority believes while a state law dictating the nature of such interactions might be helpful, this particular bill is ill-advised, harmful, and sets a precedent for putting rights at risk that are important to all of our residents.” Committee recommends OTP-A.

SB 341, relative to mandatory disclosure by school district employees to parents. This bill requires all school employees to respond ‘honestly and completely’ to written requests by parents regarding information relating to their children. From the committee report: "On the surface, this bill proposes what we all would like – for school districts and parents to collaborate and share on behalf of students’ well-being. Schools want to and regularly do engage with parents while respecting students’ constitutional right to privacy and maintaining their safety. If we lived in a world where all people were safe and respected for being their authentic selves, there would be no concerns with this bill. We don’t live in that world! Instead, the reality is that this harmful bill would endanger all vulnerable youth, especially LGBTQ. It will cause forced outing of students who are not yet ready to share with parents while putting teachers in the untenable position of risking harm to students and losing their license for a perceived infraction of an unclear law. Schools need to be safe places for all children to learn and develop healthy autonomy." Without recommendation.

SB 380, relative to moving the state primary date. This bill moves the state primary date to June. Without recommendation.

SB 439, relative to prohibiting discriminatory boycotts of Israel in state procurement and investments. Committee recommends ITL. 

SB 403, relative to health care workforce investments. This bill extends the deadlines of the legislative commission on the interdisciplinary primary care workforce issues, makes clarifying amendments to the home health care provider and nurse practice act statutes, establishes the position of and regulation of community health workers, establishes various programs and provides appropriations therefor focused on community health and health care employment. Without recommendation.
SB 456, relative to establishing a nurse retention school loan debt relief program. Committee recommends OTP.
SB 496, directing the department of health and human services to establish a climate and health protection program. Committee recommends ITL. 
SB 567, relative to protecting and expanding access to abortion medications. This bill directs the department of health and human services to protect and expand access to critical medications for reproductive health that are approved by the Food and Drug Administration. Committee recommends ITL.

SB 538, relative to zoning procedures concerning residential housing. This bill establishes a tax relief program for office conversion to residences; enables municipalities to allow its governing body to adopt certain zoning ordinance changes; and adds additional authority in zoning powers for parking requirements and lot size requirements related to sewer infrastructure. Committee recommends ITL.

SB 476, making a capital appropriation to the department of corrections toward the replacement of the New Hampshire state prison for men. This bill makes a bonded appropriation of funds for architectural, engineering, programming, and design and construction documents for the New Hampshire state prison for men. Committee recommends OTP.

SB 454, increasing the annual real estate transfer tax revenue contribution to the affordable housing fund. Committee recommends interim study. 

Next Week in House Committees 
You can watch the House hearings here. You can sign in for House bills here. And you  can contact House committees here. 

Tuesday, April 30

ELECTION LAW, Room 301-303, LOB 
10:00 AM SB 537-FN, allowing the processing of absentee ballots.

Wednesday, May 1

11:00 AM SB 558-FN, relative to insurance coverage for infertility treatments, protection from discrimination during IVF treatments, parental leave, and adoption.

10:00 AM Public hearing on proposed non-germane Amendment #2024-1647h to SB 315-FN-LOCAL, relative to law enforcement agency reporting on information concerning bias crimes. The amendment requires a law enforcement agency operating within New Hampshire to report information concerning hate crimes to the department of safety and requires the department of safety to publish the statistical information on its website. The amendment also amends the definition of “tenant” and “tenancy” to exclude individuals that are not lawful occupants of certain properties and who entered or remained there in violation of certain provisions of the criminal code. This bill further provides for procedures for the removal of those persons from the property. Copies of the amendment are available on the General Court website.
11:00 AM Public hearing on proposed non-germane Amendment #2024-1645h to SB 508-FN, relative to the duties of the superintendent of the county department of corrections concerning mental health and substance use disorder screening of inmates and coordination for services upon reentry into the community. The amendment requires the superintendent of the county department of corrections to require his or her contracted behavioral health treatment providers to use validated screening tools for mental health and substance use disorder and to, where such providers exist, permit licensed community-based treatment providers who meet the security criteria for access to the facility to have contact with people in custody for the purpose of coordinating services upon reentry into the community. The amendment also defines antisemitism for the purpose of enforcing anti-discrimination laws on the basis of race, religion, or national origin. Copies of the amendment are available on the General Court website.
1:00 PM SB 461, requiring health care providers to report certain information about abortions performed to their medical facility, and requiring those medical facilities to report the information to the department of health and human services.

2:00 PM SB 411-FN, establishing a committee to study emergency mental health services for persons 21 years of age and younger in New Hampshire.

Next Week in the Senate 
The full Senate will meet in session on May 2 at 10 AM. Watch it here

On the Consent Calendar

HB 283, to limit application fees charged to prospective residential tenants.  This bill limits the rental application fee and other fees charged by a landlord as part of the rental application process for a residential property. Committee recommends OTP.
HB 398, relative to notice of PFAS and other groundwater contamination prior to the sale of real property. Committee recommends OTP-A.
HB 1115, relative to the termination of tenancy at the expiration of the tenancy or lease term. Committee recommends interim study. 

HB 546, relative to the school building aid program. This bill requires a minimum of $50,000,000 per fiscal year to be transferred to the school building aid fund, in addition to any debt service payments, for school building aid grants. Committee recommends OTP.
HB 1048, relative to the commission on Holocaust and genocide education.  This bill extends the date of the issuance of the final report of the commission on Holocaust and genocide studies from 2024 to 2027. Committee recommends OTP.
HB 1163,  relative to review of public school minimum standards by the legislative oversight commission. This bill requires the legislative oversight committee to review and make recommendations relating to minimum standards for public school approval under consideration by the state board of education. Committee recommends OTP.
HB 1235, relative to high school students serving as school board members. This bill allows student government to establish up to 3 student school board member positions. Committee recommends OTP.
HB 1305,  relative to freedom of speech and association at public institutions of higher education. Committee recommends OTP-A.

HB 653-FN, prohibiting personal recognizance bail for violent crimes. This bill lists certain offenses which, if committed by the defendant, create a presumption that a defendant is a danger to the public and shall be detained for up to 36 hours.  The bill also provides that a person who commits an offense while on bail shall be detained without bail pending a hearing before a judge. Committee recommends OTP-A.

HB 1168, establishing a committee to study the impact of the housing crisis on people with disabilities. Committee recommends OTP-A.

HB593, relative to the forfeiture of assets in connection with a drug offense. Committee recommends OTP-A.
HB 1002, relative to fees for records under the right-to-know law. This bill establishes parameters for when a public body may charge a fee for records provided under RSA 91-A. Committee recommends OTP. 
HB 1214, relative to establishing a committee to study best practices for the development of a restorative justice model for misdemeanor-level behavior and hate crimes committed by juveniles under the age of eighteen. Committee recommends OTP.

On the Regular Calendar

HB 1066, relative to the graduation requirement of filing a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). This bill changes the requirement for school districts, public academies, and chartered public schools to provide information to students on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), and repeals the reporting requirement on the number of students provided in-person school assistance on completing the FAFSA. Committee recommends OTP.

HB 1003, relative to name changes for inmates, parolees, and convicted violent felons. This bill increases the individuals who are subject to notice requirements and a showing of a compelling reason before he or she will be permitted to change his or her name to include those convicted of certain violent felonies.  This bill also requires that notice be provided to the initial prosecuting jurisdiction of both the petition and the probate court's order. Committee recommends OTP-A.
HB 1252,  relative to establishing a committee to study the needs of Native Americans in New Hampshire. Committee recommends ITL.
HB 1456, relative to the appointment of the members of the board of tax and land appeals and the housing appeals board. This bill requires that the members of the board of tax and land appeals and the housing appeals board be appointed by the governor and council, after a public hearing before the executive council. Committee recommends OTP-A.

HB 1054, relative to the Northern Border Alliance Program fund. This bill lapses the northern border alliance fund and ends its continuous appropriation to the department of safety. Committee recommends ITL.
HB 1528, relative to reporting by the northern border alliance program. This bill requires the semi-annual report issued by the northern border alliance program to include additional reporting statistics. Committee recommends ITL.

HB 470, relative to fentanyl test strips and other drug checking equipment. This bill amends the definition of drug paraphernalia to exclude drug checking equipment and authorizes the use of drug checking equipment. Committee recommends ITL.
HB1276,  relative to repealing the prohibition on the possession or sale of blackjacks, slung shots, and metallic knuckles except by or to minors. Committee recommends interim study. 

Next Week in Senate Committees 

You can watch the Senate hearings here. You can sign in for Senate bills here. And you  can contact Senate committees here. 

Tuesday, April 30

9:00 AM HB 1205, relative to women’s school sports.
9:10 AM HB 1312, requiring parental notification of student health or well-being and certain curricula by school districts.
9:30 AM HB 1014, relative to instruction in government and civics, including information on election laws and voting.

9:45 AM HB 1264-FN, relative to the definition of accessible voting systems.
10:30 AM HB 1345, relative to the length of terms for Coos county officers.

9:40 AM HB 1221, relative to including solid waste landfills in the definition of development of regional impact.

FINANCE, Room 103, SH
1:30 PM HB 1466-FN, relative to providing disaster relief funding to municipalities after a natural disaster.
2:00 PM HB 1583-FN-A, relative to the per pupil cost of an opportunity for an adequate education.

Wednesday, May 1

9:45 AM HB 1688-FN, relative to the use of artificial intelligence by state agencies.

9:30 AM HB 1330-FN, relative to establishing an emergency medical services disciplinary review panel, and relative to procedures for removal of records of discipline.
10:00 AM HB 1669-FN, relative to restricting data sharing through the state immunization registry.

Upcoming Events & Actions

Recorded Events: 
Watch the NH Black Heritage Trail’s Envisioning the Future Panel featuring Grace Kindeke and moderated by Rep. Linda Harriott-Gathright. 

Every Wednesday
Solemn Vigils for Ceasefire now! Humanitarian access to Gaza! No tax dollars for war crimes! – Join us from 2 PM to 3 PM. Hosted by NH Peace Action, AFSC, & interfaith partners.
May 1: Senator Jeanne Shaheen, Dover District Office, 340 Central Avenue, Suite 205, Dover
May 8: Congressman Chris Pappas, Dover District Office, 660 Central Avenue, Dover

Every Thursday 
Meeting for Worship with Attention to Peace in Palestine & Israel - 5:30 PM. Hosted by AFSC.

Solemn Vigils for Ceasefire Now – 12 noon at City Hall Plaza, in front of the State House, Concord

Every Friday 
AFSC Action Hour for a Ceasefire 12 noon. Hosted by AFSC. Join AFSC staff every Friday at 12 p.m. ET / 9 a.m. PT to hear updates from Gaza. Then, take action with us as we contact our elected officials and call for an immediate cease-fire and humanitarian access to Gaza. Our elected officials need to keep hearing from us. 

Save the Dates 
Mark your calendar for these upcoming virtual events for AFSC’s “Protecting Immigrant Rights in an Election Year” webinar series to learn more about how our immigration system works and what we can do to protect and advance the rights of migrants. 

May 28 – Employment & Worker Rights 
June 25 – Hard Conversations

African & Black Diaspora Learning Series – Hosted by AFSC. Join us for an 8 session workshop series that will run from June 2024 through September 2024 and is designed to build community amongst Black and African community members locally and across the country, sharing our backgrounds, cultures and experiences in an open, inclusive and welcoming environment. Workshops will focus on key topics in diasporic history, systems of oppression, and movements for justice, incorporating cultural and trauma-informed wellness practices to develop participants' capacity for leadership in local and national work for immigrant and economic justice.

Solid Foundations: Gubernatorial Candidate Forums on the Wellbeing of Kids in the Granite State - 10 AM to 11 AM – NH Institute of Politics, St. Anselm College, Manchester. Hosted by Save the Children Action Network. During this pivotal moment to invest in educating the public about the importance of issues facing New Hampshire families, particularly around early childhood education and child hunger.
May 9 – Cinde Warmington
May 10 – Chuck Morse
May 13 – Kelly Ayotte
May 14 – Joyce Craig 

Monday, April 29
Strengthening the Foundations of a Thriving Economy: Health - 11 AM to 12 PM. Hosted by NH Fiscal Policy Institute. Accessible and affordable health care is essential to the well-being and economic security of Granite Staters. Healthy residents are more easily able to find and keep employment, both helping their well-being and bolstering a workforce that can support a thriving and prosperous Granite State economy for everyone. 

Wednesday, May 1
Ballots & Brews - 6 PM to 8 PM. BarCode Lounge & Grill - 1055 Elm St. Manchester. Hosted by Open Democracy. Democracy is for everyone, but only a fraction of New Hampshire residents get involved in the political process beyond voting in general elections - or even know how to start. We want to work together to fix that. Join us for an approachable introduction to the New Hampshire legislative process. In this relaxed atmosphere, we will discuss why voters' rights and civic engagement matter, the importance of campaign finance and redistricting reforms for passing policies that cater to the needs of the people, and the many different ways you can get involved.

Think Twice Toolkit: Building Skills for Police Alternatives - 8 PM. Hosted by AFSC. Join us for an empowering 4-part series designed to equip you with a comprehensive toolkit of police alternatives and personal skills. Register once for all 4 sessions and attend as many as you can

Thursday, May 2
PPNHAF Bridging the Gap Training Part 1 of 3 - 6 PM to 8 PM. Hosted by PPNNE. Learn how to reduce abortion stigma through deep canvassing and a three-part training academy! Trainees will gain skills like building rapport, storytelling, and changing hearts and minds through deep conversations. Learn more about Bridging the Gap here
Part 2 will be on May 7th from 6-8 pm via Zoom 
Part 3 will be on May 9th from 6-8 pm via Zoom 
(You can sign up for Parts 2 and 3 after completing Part 1)

Wednesday, May 8 
Veterans for Peace – PeaceWalk 2024 – from Maine to Washington, DC – We’ll be walking for the well-being of all people, for peace and an end to the threat of nuclear war and all wars, and for an environment that supports all life. PeaceWalk 2024 will be open to all who love peace and want to walk for it. Folks can join the walk for as little or as long as they wish. Walkers will be in Dover, NH on Wednesday, May 8 at 2 PM, joining the Vigil for Ceasefire at the Dover District Office of Congressman Chris Pappas, 660 Central Avenue; and then at Dover Friends Meeting, 141 Central Avenue for refreshments and informal visiting; and then at Community Church of Durham, 17 Main Street, Durham, for a formal program starting at 6 PM. All are welcome!

Surveillance, Criminalization, and Punishment (Spring 2024 Speaker Series) - Toward Data Justice: Countermobilization and Community Control - 4:30 PM. Hosted by Harvard Kennedy School. Will modern surveillance, AI, predictive policing, facial recognition, and more shrink the criminal legal system’s footprint or expand criminalization into new domains? On balance, will new technology improve our flawed systems or entrench existing and new harms? We’ll be joined by academics, practitioners, and impacted community members to unpack cutting-edge technological advancements in criminalization and punishment—exploring improvements to the administration of justice and the reproduction of hierarchies of control and domination.

Think Twice Toolkit: Building Skills for Police Alternatives - 8 PM. Hosted by AFSC. Join us for an empowering 4-part series designed to equip you with a comprehensive toolkit of police alternatives and personal skills. Register once for all 4 sessions and attend as many as you can

Thursday, May 9
Apartheid-Free Webinar: The Palestinian Experience in Israel - 12 PM to 1 PM. Hosted by AFSC. 
Join us as guest speaker Muhammad Zeidan will discuss the realities of apartheid in occupied Palestine and the discrimination faced by the Arab minority within Israel. Muhammad Zeidan was the former director of the Arab Association for Human Rights in occupied Palestine. He has dedicated his career to safeguarding the political, civil, economic, and cultural rights of the Palestinian Arab minority within Israeli territories.

No To Patterns: The Live Experience - 7 PM to 8:30 PM. 3S Artspace - 319 Vaughan St. Portsmouth. Engage. Connect. Change the patterns. At the May NTP event, host Courtney Daniel will welcome us all into an evening of conversation focusing on the theme of "Learning to Lean on Community" with featured panelists: Kaylee Donovan, founder and CEO of The Gallery and Gene Martin, Executive Director of the New Hampshire Fiscal Policy Institute. 

Monday, May 13
Strengthening the Foundations of a Thriving Economy: Income and Poverty - 11 AM to 12 PM. Hosted by NH Fiscal Policy Institute. Despite New Hampshire having the lowest poverty rate among the 50 U.S. states as measured by the Official Poverty Measure, high housing costs and other living expenses indicate more hardships and financial insecurity for Granite Staters near the federal poverty threshold. NHFPI will share the latest information on income, poverty, and cost of living across New Hampshire, highlighting key challenges to household budgets and the effects of taxes on household finances.

Utility Justice: Volunteer Interest Meeting – 6 PM to 7 PM. Hosted by 350NH. Our utility companies’ interests are intertwined with the fossil fuel industry. Electricity prices in New Hampshire have fluctuated wildly because of our over-reliance on fracked gas, yet companies like Liberty and Eversource continue to pursue efforts to increase fracked gas imports. These companies also continue to make record profits at a time when a record number of households need help covering electricity bills. Help us launch the next chapter of our Utilities campaign to ensure clean, affordable energy for all! Come to our first volunteer interest meeting to learn more!

Tuesday, May 14 
Public School Strong Training! - 6:30 PM to 8 PM. Hosted by HEAL Together. Join public school parents, family members and supporters from across the country to learn: - How to show your support for well-resourced and inclusive public schools - What to look for when you observe your school district's school board meeting - How to form a Public School Strong team in your school district - Ways to join a national movement to protect and transform public schools that serve all children.

Challenging Injustice and Building Peace: A Conversation with AFSC - 7 PM. Hosted by AFSC. Join staff leaders from AFSC to learn about our work for just and sustainable peace, just economies, and just responses to forced displacement and migration. Please register by Friday, May 10.

Thursday, May 16 
Community Power and Choosing Alternate Power Companies - 6:30 PM - 7:30 PM. Hosted by UU Action. Learn about Community Power in NH and about choosing alternate power companies. Ask questions!

Run for Office 101: State Representative - 7 PM. Hosted by 603 Forward. Are you considering a run for State Representative? We’re here to help! Join us to learn what it means to be a State Representative and learn some campaign best practices. 

Wednesday, May 22 
Shades of Progress: A Business Alliance for People of Color Conference - 8 AM to 2 PM. Grappone Conference Center, 70 Constitution Avenue, Concord. Hosted by Business Alliance for People of Color. Join our inaugural, groundbreaking conference dedicated to empowering the Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) community and Main Street business community in New Hampshire. This event is not just limited to BIPOC professionals; it welcomes leaders and organizations from all backgrounds to come together in a spirit of collaboration, support, and empowerment.

Saturday, June 8
NeighborFest Block Party - 11 AM to 2 PM. Cedar St. Manchester. Hosted by NeighborWorks Southern New Hampshire. This event is designed to connect residents with valuable community resources and strengthen our neighborhood's connections.  We are excited to offer a wide range of activities for the attendees, a comprehensive resource fair, a free lunch from Don Quijote, a petting zoo provided by McDonny's, yard games, family-friendly activities, and free giveaways!

With best wishes,
Maggie Fogarty, Grace Kindeke and Kathleen Wooten 

AFSC’s New Hampshire “State House Watch" newsletter is published to bring you information about matters being discussed in Concord including housing, the death penalty, immigration, education, civil liberties, and labor rights. We also follow the state budget and tax system, voting rights, corrections policy, and more.Subscribe today to receive State House Watch news every week!

The AFSC is a Quaker organization supported by people of many faiths who care about peace, social justice, humanitarian service, and nonviolent change. Maggie Fogarty and Grace Kindeke staff the New Hampshire Program which publishes this newsletter. Read our 2023 highlights here. Kathleen Wooten is AFSC’s State House Watch researcher and database manager.

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