State House Watch: April 8, 2023

By Maggie Fogarty and Grace Kindeke


NH Campaign for a People's Budget was at the State House all week in support of public education, affordable housing, fair taxation, immigrant rights and more.

"Well, I don't know what will happen now. We've got some difficult days ahead. But it really doesn't matter with me now, because I've been to the mountaintop. And I don't mind. Like anybody, I would like to live a long life — longevity has its place. But I'm not concerned about that now. I just want to do God's will. And He's allowed me to go up to the mountain. And I've looked over, and I've seen the Promised Land. I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people, will get to the promised land. So, I'm happy, tonight. I'm not worried about anything, I'm not fearing any man. Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord." – Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr, April 3, 1968

April 8, 2023

Dear State House Watchers,

It was a week of holy days for our Jewish, Muslim and Christian community members, and a week of state budget advocacy for Granite Staters of all backgrounds.

Read on for a summary of the House session at Crossover, including the passage, on a voice vote, of HB 1 and HB 2, the state budget bills. Given the narrow margin in the House in terms of political party affiliation, and the number of contentious issues within the budget proposed by the House Finance Committee, passage of a budget was not guaranteed going into this week. But, some good compromises and effective advocacy led to better outcomes than we had anticipated. Hooray for people engaged at the state level to promote the common good!

Speaking of advocacy at the state level, we are riveted and alarmed by a number of recent actions in state legislatures throughout the country, including the expulsion of Justin Jones, D-Nashville, and Justin Pearson, D-Memphis, two young Black legislators, by a 2/3 majority in the Tennessee House of Representatives for their actions to hold legislators accountable for gun violence. Read more here and here, and take a moment to listen to Representative Pearson here and Representative Jones here.

(Closer to home, we cheer on the high school students throughout the state who walked out to demonstrate their demand for commonsense gun control measures. Read one young leader’s words here.)

Florida’s state Senate passed a near complete abortion ban earlier this week. Given the support in the Florida House and governor’s office, the measure could be signed within days. Read more here. Florida Senate Minority Leader Lauren Book was arrested with others during a peaceful protest action later that evening. More here.

Idaho’s governor signed legislation this week that makes the provision of gender-affirming health care a felony. A similar law will move forward in Kentucky as well after lawmakers overrode the governor’s veto. More here.

And there’s more! “In Kansas, state lawmakers voted on Wednesday to overturn Gov. Laura Kelly’s (D) veto of legislation that prohibits transgender athletes from competing in women’s sports from kindergarten through college. Additionally, Republicans in the state gave the greenlight to legislation on Thursday that would permit parents to bar their children from lessons on LGBTQ issues and topics in the classroom. And in Indiana on Wednesday, Gov. Eric Holcomb signed legislation that bans all gender-affirming care for minors.” Read more here.

There are some positive notes: Wisconsin voters – especially younger voters - demonstrated robust support for abortion rights and fair maps by electing Janet Protasiewicz to the state’s Supreme Court this week; Chicago voters sent progressive activist, former teacher and union organizer Brandon Johnson to the mayor’s office; and the U.S. Supreme Court refused to intervene to enforce a law passed by the West Virginia legislature that would have prohibited transgender girls from participating in girls’ sports. More here.

It’s abundantly clear that what we do locally matters. But you already know that, or you wouldn’t be reading!

State Budget News

There’s some good news to share about the current version of the state budget which passed the full House on Thursday. Last minute compromises and approval of some floor amendments made significant changes to the House Finance Committee’s proposed budget and cleared the way for strong bipartisan support. Changes included:

The elimination of funding for a Northern Border Alliance, thanks to an amendment offered by Representative Alissandra Murray which was approved by a division vote of 241-143. From Representative Murray: “This program is built on the wild assumption that Northern New Hampshire has an extreme problem with illegal border crossings. Yet despite informal and formal requests, neither the governor nor any state agency (including the Department of Safety) has provided any data on unauthorized border entries into New Hampshire or apprehensions of border crossers within New Hampshire to support these supposed concerns. I’m not sure why we would institute such an unregulated program without any data or studies to indicate it’s needed.” Read our message to House members prior to the vote.

The House also included language which will require public notification in advance of immigration checkpoints. $15 million was restored to the Affordable Housing Fund. Language was removed which would have expanded eligibility for the ‘education freedom accounts,’ and House members reduced the increase in funding for the vouchers.

We were also pleased to see an increase to Medicaid reimbursement rates, as well as the retention of the 10% raise for state workers and the removal of $40 million for a new state prison.

We’re disappointed that the House budget includes an accelerated repeal of the Interest and Dividends tax, giving a major tax break to the wealthiest New Hampshire residents and corporations while eliminating tens of millions of dollars in much-needed revenue for programs that help all of us.

Ahead of Thursday’s vote, the NH Campaign for a People’s Budget made our priorities clear with visibility actions on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, and a letter to all Representatives which expressed our priorities. Over the coming weeks, we’ll host a series of Monday evening community conversations about key budget issues. Scroll down to the events section for more information, and please plan to join us.

Here's a roundup of budget news stories:
NH House Approves $15.76 Billion Budget for Next Biennium (InDepthNH)
House passes a state budget, to the surprise of many (NH Bulletin)
Bipartisan compromise clears way to pass House budget (Union Leader)
Budget deal clears NH House with broad bipartisan support (NPR)

The Senate Finance Committee will start to hear agency presentations next week. We’ll let you know when the committee schedules its public hearing.


SUPPORT HB 624, relative to federal immigration checkpoints. This bill, which would require public notification in advance of immigration checkpoints, has already passed the House, and is scheduled for a hearing in Senate Judiciary on Tuesday, April 11 at 1:45 PM in Room 100, SH. Please sign in to show your support. Note that this language has already been included in the budget, but we still need to make a good case on the Senate side. You can read our House testimony here.

SUPPORT HB 596, prohibiting the use of racial profiling in law enforcement activities and in sentencing. This bill has already passed the House, and is scheduled for a hearing in Senate Judiciary on Tuesday, April 11 at 2 PM in Room 100, SH. Please sign in to show your support. You can read our House testimony here.

SUPPORT SB 11, relative to African American burial grounds. This bill has already passed the Senate, and has a hearing in the House Resources, Recreation and Development Committee on Wednesday, April 12 at 1 PM in Room 305-307, LOB. Please sign in to support.

OPPOSE HB 117, relative to the termination of tenancy at the expiration of the tenancy or lease term. This harmful bill will be voted on in the full Senate on Thursday, April 13. We are happy to see that the Senate Commerce Committee has recommended ITL by a unanimous vote. Please contact your senator and urge them to support the committee’s recommendation and defeat this bill.

OPPOSE SB 272, the so-called parental bill of rights that would require school staff to out LGBTQ+ students. This bill has already passed the Senate and will have a public hearing in the House Education Committee on Tuesday, April 18 at 10 AM in Reps Hall. Join 603 Equality and others, including faith leaders, for visibility in front of the State House at 9 AM before heading into the hearing, and be sure to sign in to show your opposition. Sustained opposition to this dangerous bill will be necessary, as there is a possibility that Senate budget writers will include the proposal in their version of the budget.

Immigration News

Immigrant leaders and allies were busy this week, successfully advocating for the elimination of the Northern Border Alliance from the state budget and sounding the alarm about SB 132, the anti-sanctuary cities bill which will be scheduled for a public hearing soon in the House Municipal and County Government Committee. Maggie and Grace wrote an op-ed about these issues for the Concord Monitor, Union Leader and Foster’s Daily Democrat, and a group of advocates submitted a letter to all House members. We recommend this interview with the Boston Globe’s Amanda Gokee on NHPR.

Beyond the Dome

NH resident Claire Holston wrote this week about the challenges of system change for racial justice. Asking “Can implicit bias training stop racial discrimination?” she observes that “the lack of diversity in New Hampshire contributes to unconscious, deeply ingrained biases” which must be addressed at a deeper level than simply hiring more BIPOC people into law enforcement roles.

Congratulations to the Starbucks workers in Rochester who have filed a petition to unionize, making them the first to do so in New Hampshire. Holly Bogardus explained why the workers decided to move ahead: “We've had a lot of issues at our store that we've always had a hard time getting addressed…. We've seen the differences it's made for the stores that have won their union votes; it just really made us feel like this is the best course of action for us. Especially as we've attempted to solve problems through Starbucks channels, and we just haven't seen any change or improvement or felt listened to." Read more here. Priority issues for the organizers include increased hours and access to benefits.

Last Week at the State House

The budget wasn’t the only action at the State House last week. House members voted decisively to pass HB 639 which would legalize marijuana. Unfortunately, they also voted to defeat, by a narrow margin, HB 430 which would limit education freedom accounts to those who had attended public school for at least one year or who were entering kindergarten or first grade

SB 263, a bill to permanently reauthorize the Granite Advantage Health Care Program (also known as expanded Medicaid) had its House hearing on Tuesday. You can still take action to let House members know how important it is to guarantee that this program will continue.

Two good reproductive justice bills – HB 88 and HB 224 – had their Senate hearings on Thursday. Read more here.

LOB – Legislative Office Building (33 N. State St. Concord)
SH – State House (107 N. Main St. Concord)
TABLED – Laid on the table. A vote to put the bill ‘on the table’ means that no further action will be taken until the bill comes off the table. A 2/3 vote may be required to remove the bill from the table. After Crossover, tabled bills cannot be acted on for the remainder of the legislative year.
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.
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.
RETAIN – When a House committee wishes to hold onto a bill for further consideration. The committee makes this decision for themselves; approval in the full House is not needed. The committee has until the end of the calendar year to make a recommendation for further action.
RC – Roll call vote. Each legislator’s vote is recorded and attributed to them.
VV – Voice vote. Occurs when the speaker listens for whether yay or nay is louder (no votes are counted).
DV – Division vote. Votes are counted but names aren't recorded.
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.

Last week in the House

The full House met in session on April 6, the last day to act on House bills. Here are the outcomes for bills we’ve been tracking.

On the Consent Calendar


HB 269-FN, relative to limiting the authority of New Hampshire delegates to policymaking conventions. OTP/A by DV, 202-183
HB 379-FN, (New Title) requiring notice be provided to tenants during residential eviction proceedings regarding legal counsel. This bill adds a sentence to eviction notices that legal assistance may be available to indigent tenants and how to seek assistance. No fiscal impact. OTP by VV.

HB 445-FN, relative to the operational funds of OPLC. TABLED by DV, 378-6.

On the Regular Calendar

HB 2-FN-A-LOCAL, relative to state fees, funds, revenues, and expenditures (the state budget trailer bill). OTP-A by VV.
HB 1-A, making appropriations for the expenses of certain departments of the state for fiscal years ending June 30, 2024 and June 30, 2025 (the state budget). OTP/A by VV.
HB 46-FN, (New Title) establishing a committee to study replacement of bail commissioners with court magistrates. This creates a committee of three representatives and one senator to review whether bail commissioners should be replaced or supplemented by court magistrates and assess the following: What are the benefits and problems with the current bail commissioner system? How could a court magistrate system be structured? Should court magistrates be used to replace bail commissioners? Should court magistrates be used to supplement bail commissioners? No financial impact. The amendment fixes a typo. OTP/A by VV.
HB 74-FN, relative to an employee’s unused earned time. This bill would mandate that employers with 15 or more employees offering vacation time pay employees for unused vacation time at the termination of their employment. The main reason this bill is needed is to prevent an employee from losing time they’ve earned under circumstances that may be beyond their control. OTP by RC, 205-181.
HB 234-FN, relative to renewable energy credits. This bill is designed to end the practice of Renewable Energy Credit (REC) sweeping, a provision in statute that authorizes state seizure of renewable energy property, without the knowledge of, or any compensation to, NH businesses and residents. ITL by DV, 193-191.
HB 250-FN, relative to the accidental death benefit payable to a group II member. For over 50 years government employees’ beneficiaries have received a pension of 50% when the employee dies accidentally or is killed on the job. This bill doubles that to 100% and expands the benefit to all government employees. OTP/A by RC, 328-53.
HB 330-FN-A, relative to the national guard recruitment incentive program and its funding and rulemaking. This bill raises the enlistment bonus from $500 to $1,000. The rulemaking for recruitment is removed, so that recruiters can make changes more quickly. Also, the fines collected in the military court will be dedicated to the enlistment incentive fund to minimize state costs. OTP by VV.
HB 337-FN, relative to directing the office of professional licensure and certification to provide notice of public meetings and an opportunity for comment from the public. This bill requires more transparency by boards, councils and commissions associated with the Office of Professional Licensure and Certification (OPLC). They will give two weeks’ notice of meetings, and one week notice of meeting materials, and will take written and oral comments from the public. No significant financial impact. OTP by RC, 387-0.
HB 364-FN, relative to transportation for students attending career and technical education centers. This bill authorizes the Department of Education to reimburse from its regular budget the full cost of transportation in an amount based upon a formula using type of vehicle, mileage, and number of trips made for (a) regional career and technical education (CTE) students who attend regional career and technical centers; and for (b) at-risk students who attend alternative education programs located at a regional career and technical education center or other comprehensive high school. The sending district shall be responsible for providing transportation and paying the transportation costs and shall then be reimbursed from state funds. OTP by VV.
HB 430-FN-LOCAL, relative to applications for the education freedom accounts program. This bill limits applications for the Education Freedom Accounts (EFAs) to students who are presently enrolled in public schools for at least one year or who will be entering kindergarten or first grade. Information from the NH Department of Education reports 3,200 students currently enrolled in the EFA program and of that number, only 100 students made the decision to leave a public school because of the availability of an EFA. The vast majority of children securing an EFA already are attending a private school or an alternative. The existing law has enabled a taxpayer-funded private tuition rebate program and this bill would restore the original purpose of providing choice only for children in public schools. ITL by RC, 194-192.
HB 504-FN, relative to the adult parole board and making an appropriation therefor. This bill contains two sections. The first section creates a process and a remuneration policy to allow prior parole board members to serve as substitutes when the need arises. The compensation was $300/day. The second section increases the pay rate from $20,000 to $30,000 for general members and from $20,000 to $40,000 for the vice chair. OTP by VV.
HB 534-FN-A, relative to water assistance for natural disasters. This bill creates a new fund administered by the Department of Environmental Services (DES) to help repair drinking water facilities affected by natural disasters and seeds the fund with $5 million. OTP by VV.
HB 576-FN-A-LOCAL, (New Title) relative to administration of a commercial property assessed clean energy (C-PACE) program in a clean energy efficiency and clean energy district. OTP/A by VV.
HB 626-FN, requiring the department of education to administer the education freedom account. Under current law, EFAs are administered by a private contractor that retains 10% of each EFA allocated to an individual student account. Most students with an EFA were not even attending public schools when they applied to the program and instead were already going to private or home schools at no cost to taxpayers. ITL by RC, 195-194.

HB 25-A, making appropriations for capital improvements. The capital budget provides bonded funding for statewide capital improvements including construction, repairs, and investments in state-owned buildings, state facilities and parks. Such improvements aim to maintain and strengthen our state’s non-highway transportation, building, and technological infrastructure. OTP/A by VV.

HB 639-FN-A, relative to the legalization and regulation of cannabis and making appropriations therefor. OTP/A by RC, 272-109.

Coming up in House Committees

Monday, April 10

Room 302-304, LOB
9 AM SB 113-FN, relative to cost effectiveness review of the joint utility energy efficiency plan.
9:30 AM SB 161, relative to low-moderate income community solar projects.
10 AM SB 166-FN, relative to electric grid modernization.
10:30 AM SB 167-FN-L, relative to green hydrogen energy and infrastructure.

Tuesday, April 11

Room 205-207, LOB
10 AM SB 135, relative to alternative dispute resolution in special education.
10:30 AM SB 151-FN, relative to mental health education.
11 AM Executive Session on SB 25, repealing a requirement for a report on chartered public school payments; SB 39-FN, relative to criminal history checks for school transportation monitors; SB 77, relative to changes in school placement for students; SB 109, relative to school safety and coordination with law enforcement; SB 136, prohibiting the employment or volunteering of a revoked or suspended educator; SB 151-FN, relative to mental health education; SB 152-FN, relative to New Hampshire workforce training programs; SB 155-FN-L, relative to the adoption of school administrative unit budgets; SB 213, relative to educational institution policies on social media.

ELECTION LAW, Room 306-308, LOB
1 PM. SB 156-FN, relative to voter registration and verification of voter identity.
1:30 PM. SB 157-FN, relative to election audits.
2 PM. SB 158, relative to absentee ballot outer envelopes.
2:30 PM. SCR 1, affirming the general court’s support for New Hampshire’s first in the nation primary.
3 PM. SB 70-FN, relative to the establishment of an election information portal.
3:30 PM. Public Hearing on amendment #2023-1280h to SB 70-FN, relative to the establishment of an election information portal and relative to the purchase of election equipment. The amendment directs the secretary of state to establish an election information portal and allows grants to be given to cities and towns for the purchase of election equipment.

Wednesday, April 12

Room 302-304, LOB
10:30 AM SB 64, establishing a study committee on resident-owned manufactured housing park disputes and oversight of resident-owned manufactured housing parks.
11:30 AM SB 197-FN, relative to the operation and regulation of certain business entities within the state.
2:15 PM SB 102, relative to the Jones Act’s effect on New Hampshire’s heating and energy fuel market.

11 AM SB 71-FN, relative to workers’ compensation for firefighter cancer disease and establishing a commission to study the implementation of optional annual cancer screenings.
1:45 PM SB 106-FN, establishing an emerging professional certificate for child care programs.

9:30 AM SB 127-FN, relative to certain programs administered by the department of health and human services
11:15 AM SB 236, establishing a committee to study nonprofit organizations contracting with the department of health and human services for children’s services.

JUDICIARY, Room 206-208, LOB
1 PM SB 128-FN, relative to payment for legal services for persons involuntarily admitted for mental health services.
1:30 PM SB 129-FN, relative to the payment of costs for indigent persons involved in mediation services.
2 PM SB 183, exempting certain phone calls from the right to know law. SB 250, relative to remote participation in government meetings
2:30 PM SB 250, relative to remote participation in government meetings.

9:45 AM SB 60, relative to water quality.
1 PM SB 11, relative to African American burial grounds.

Thursday, April 13

10 AM SB 42-FN, relative to overpayment of unemployment compensation.
10:30 AM SB 193, relative to the obligation of collective bargaining units to negotiate in good faith.
11 AM SB 269, relative to tip pooling and sharing.
11:30 AM SB 46, relative to electronic payments to employee debit cards.

Tuesday, April 18

Room Reps Hall, SH
10 AM SB 272-FN, establishing a parents’ bill of rights in education.

Coming up in the Senate

The full Senate will meet in session on Thursday, April 13, 2023 at 10 AM. Watch it here.

On the Consent Calendar

HB 71, repealing a department of education report on chartered public school funding. Committee recommends OTP by a vote of 5-0.
HB 170, requiring the teaching of cursive handwriting and multiplication tables. Committee recommends OTP by a vote of  5-0.
HB 207-FN, relative to school district unanticipated funds. The bill increases, from $5,000 to $20,000 the amount of unanticipated funds which would require a public hearing. Committee recommends OTP by a vote of 5-0.
HB 377-FN, relative to screening and intervention in public schools and public charter schools for dyslexia and related disorders, and establishing an addition to adequate education grants for certain pupils screened for dyslexia and related disorders. Committee recommends OTP by a vote of 5-0.
HB 435, relative to relief aid calculation in determining grants for adequate education. Increases the amount for relief aid grants based on eligibility for free or reduced priced school meals and adjusts the grants by changes in the consumer price index. Committee recommends OTP by a vote of 5-0.
HB 452, relative to the department of education procedures for school building aid applications. Committee recommends OTP by a vote of 5-0.

HB 203, relative to publication of annual county budgets. Specifies when the public hearing should be held and that notice of the meeting to adopt the budget can be mailed or delivered. Additionally, a copy of the proposed annual budget must now be made available on the county website. Committee recommends OTP by a vote of 5-0.

HB 111, establishing a committee to study electrical vehicle charging for residential renters. Committee recommends OTP-A by a vote of 5-0.

On the Regular Calendar

HB 117, relative to the termination of tenancy at the expiration of the tenancy or lease term. Committee recommends ITL by a vote of 4-0.
HB 235, establishing a committee to study the landlord tenant mediation program. Committee recommends OTP by a vote of 4-0.
HB 477, to prohibit municipal inspections of owner-occupied units of multi-unit housing. Committee recommends ITL by a vote of 4-0.
HB 522-FN, relative to money transmitters. Committee recommends OTP by a vote of 4-0.

HB 36, relative to fees of sheriffs and deputy sheriffs. Committee recommends OTP by a vote of 4-0.
HB 336, relative to the format of election ballots. Committee recommends OTP by a vote of 4-0.

HB 56, relative to permits for the siting of new landfills. Committee recommends ITL by a vote of 3-2.
HB 233-FN, relative to useful thermal energy under the renewable portfolio standards. Committee recommends OTP by a vote of 4-0.

HB 127, relative to the declaration of a state of emergency. Inexpedient to Legislate, Vote 4-0.
HB 193-FN, relative to administration of the New Hampshire retirement system. Committee recommends OTP by a vote of 4-0.

HB 49-FN-A, relative to postponing the closure of the Sununu Youth Services Center. Committee recommends OTP by a vote of 3-1.

Coming up in Senate Committees

Monday, April 10

FINANCE, Room 103, SH
1 PM Presentation of HB 1-A and HB 2-FN-A-L by House Finance Committee Chair Ken Weyler and House Finance Committee Members
2 PM Legislative Budget Assistant Presentation on Surplus Statement
2:45 PM Agency Budget Presentations

Tuesday, April 11

COMMERCE, Room 100, SH
9:40 AM HB 150, relative to the certification of a collective bargaining unit.
10 AM HB 261, authorizing residential tenants to terminate their lease in instances of domestic violence or following a disabling illness or accident.

9 AM HB 129-FN-L, relative to menstrual hygiene products in schools.
9:15 AM HB 550-FN, relative to chartered public school dissolution.
9:30 AM HB 572-FN, relative to eligibility for free school meals.
9:45 AM HB 604, relative to reading specialists

9:15 AM HB 154, relative to the adoption of public health ordinances by municipalities.
9:30 AM HB 197-L, relative to the proration of property tax exemptions.
9:45 AM HB 195, relative to the definition of political advocacy organization.
10 AM HB 244, relative to the printing of the election day checklist.

9 AM HB 142, relative to the operation of the Burgess Biopower plant.
9:15 AM HB 257, relative to telephone carrier of last resort obligations.
9:30 AM HB 385, relative to the approval of community electric aggregation plans by the department of energy.

1 PM HB 107-FN, relative to employment restrictions for registered sex offenders.
1:15 PM. HB 400-FN, relative to certain assault offenses, bail eligibility for commission of certain assault offenses, and making a false report to a law enforcement officer.
1:30 PM. HB 588-FN, relative to the criteria for applying for parole.
1:45 PM. HB 624-FN, relative to federal immigration checkpoints.
2 PM. HB 596-FN, prohibiting the use of racial profiling in law enforcement activities and in sentencing.

Wednesday, April 12

Room 103, SH
9:30 AM HB 421, requiring menstrual hygiene products to be provided to prisoners who menstruate in state and county correctional facilities.
9:45 AM HB 238, relative to the role of quality control and the developmental disability service system.
10 AM HB 228, relative to repealing the commission on demographic trends.

9:30 AM HB 426, relative to the regulation of pharmacists-in-charge and pharmacies.
10 AM HB 408, relative to foster children and vaccinations.

Upcoming Events

NH People's Budget Community Conversations  - Mondays, April 17 to May 22 - 6 PM to 7:30 PM. Via Zoom and at Arlington Street Community Center, 36 Arlington St. Nashua. Hosted by the NH Coalition for a People’s Budget. The People's Budget coalition is planning a series of six Community Conversations. Join us online and in person to learn more about the NH state budget and come together as a community to share our stories of how key components of the budget impact us. Learn more about the NH People’s Budget and how our voices can build a new vision for and impact how state resources can be allocated to better serve our communities!

The Refugee Leadership Development Program provides monthly workshops to refugee and immigrant organizers across the United States. Led by refugees for refugees, this training series is an opportunity to learn more about advocacy tactics being used to advance pro-refugee / pro-immigrant policy on the state and national level, story-telling and narrative shifting, and connecting with resources and local networks to build more welcoming and inclusive communities. Participants who attend a minimum of 3 workshops will receive a Certificate of Participation by We Are All America. Similarly, those who attend every training will be gifted a Certificate of Completion, where the alum of our program will be invited to co-facilitate or propose future workshops.

Sign up for the DEI workplace innovation challenge hosted by NH Businesses for Social Responsibility.

Monday, April 10

The Beauties & the Beasts of NH Environment, Energy & Climate Bills  - 5:30 PM to 6:45 PM. Hosted by NH Network for Environment-Energy-Climate. Join us for an evening with three prominent NH legislators and two scientists to discuss “the Beauties” and “the Beasts” – the environment, energy and climate bills that have survived committee, House or Senate to “cross over” to the other chamber of the Legislature. Of special concern this year is the threat of toxic pollution from “Advanced Recycling.”  Scientists Walter and Ellickson will explain the science of measuring cumulative effects, which could make a difference in legislation to provide safeguards for new (and old) technologies. We’ll discuss bills that should be supported, those to oppose, and why.

The Newly Passed Pregnant Workers Fairness Act and PUMP Act: What State & Local Partners Need to Know - 3 PM. Hosted by A Better Balance. Join us for a webinar about the newly passed federal Pregnant Workers Fairness Act and PUMP for Nursing Mothers Act. This webinar is designed for state and local partners and allies in the gender & women’s rights, racial justice, economic justice, maternal and infant health, labor, and social services spaces (among others!). Come learn what you should know about these new laws, including what they do, how they work, the significance of the laws, interaction with other federal/state/local laws, what’s next, and more!

Tuesday, April 11

Meeting Global Skills and Talent Needs in Changing Labor Markets - 10 AM. Hosted by Migration Policy Institute. As demographic pressures, technological advances, economic shifts, and pandemic disruptions rapidly reshape labor markets in the United States and globally, the resulting labor shortages and skills gaps are sparking conversations about the role that immigration could serve.

Rally in Support of Graduate Fellows – 10 AM to 12 PM. The Green at Dartmouth College.  Hosted by Graduate Organized Laborers of Dartmouth (GOLD; the teaching and research assistants). The Dartmouth administration has informed us that they intend to challenge every ballot cast by graduate fellows in the upcoming election. This includes 2/3 of our union. They are hoping to delay the inevitable, because they know they cannot win in a free and fair election. The claim that graduate fellows do not contribute to the institution's value is false, disrespectful, discriminatory, and illegal. They are instead hoping to produce hundreds of challenged ballots and delay bargaining through a years-long legal battle. By coming together, we can beat back this legal tactic and win our union.

Disrupting Adoption Narratives: Adoptees for Reproductive Justice - 4 PM to 5 PM. Hosted by Prism. In this live conversation with adoptees for reproductive justice, we will question adoption as a system that is inextricably linked to family separations, settler colonialism, and white supremacy. Adoption justice is reproductive justice. Time and time again, the solution offered to anti-abortion efforts is adoption, yet we fail to center adoptees whose lived experiences and areas of expertise touch every injustice and systemic problem our movements face—including reproductive health, racial & immigration justice, climate disaster, education, and abolition.

Wednesday, April 12

The Belonging Barometer: The State of Belonging in America - 1 PM. Hosted by the American Immigration Council and Over Zero. Join us for a discussion following the release of our joint report, “The Belonging Barometer – The State of Belonging in America,” which calls attention to belonging as a critical dimension of life that should matter for key stakeholders, leaders, and philanthropists across the country who seek to improve physical, social, civic, and democratic well-being. It provides a first-of-its-kind measure of belonging — the Belonging Barometer — that is robust, accessible, and readily deployable in the service of efforts to strengthen resilience and social cohesion. It also shares findings from a national survey to give a baseline snapshot of the state of belonging in the United States.

Community Open Mic On Zoom: Share Your Coming Out Story - 6:30 PM. Hosted by 603 Equality.  join us for a story-sharing open mic on Zoom next week where we’ll come together as a community to provide a loving, supportive environment where you can safely share your story. Since SB 272 (the bill that would require teachers and school staff to "out" trans students to potentially unsupportive parents when they've changed their name, pronouns, or requested other affirmation of their gender) is up for a hearing soon, we'll focus this space on coming out stories - the good, the bad, the "I never came out, they just knew I was not straight or cis" - and everything in between. All are welcome!

Thursday, April 13

Legislative Dialogue on Medicaid Expansion – 4 PM to 5 PM. Hosted by NHPHA. Join us for a dialogue among key figures in New Hampshire, including Senator Jeb Bradley (invited), Representative Jess Edwards, Chairman of the Financial Committee Division III, and Henry Lipman, Medicaid Director, State of New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services. The session is moderated by NHPHA's Legislative Team, Andrew Hosmer, and Peter Bragdon, Senior Advisors at Preti Strategies. In this dialogue, our panelists will explore the Medicaid Expansion program, including, but not limited to, the debate on whether it is a welfare or a healthcare program, work requirements, budget, and others.

Sunday, April 16

Love’s Gonna Carry Us: A Singalong Concert – 4 PM. 11 Oxbow Pond Road, Canterbury. Hosted by Concord Friends Meeting. Join us for a benefit concert for the Asylum Seeker Support Fund featuring Annie Patterson and Peter Blood, creators of “Rise Up Singing” and “Rise Again” songbooks. Annie & Peter’s songbooks have created a quiet revolution of group singing across North America. This concert offers a rare opportunity to meet the creators of these popular songbooks and experience their gifts of nurturing community and resilience through song.

Monday, April 17

NH People's Budget Community Conversations  - 6 PM to 7:30 PM. Zoom and Arlington Street Community Center, 36 Arlington St. Nashua. Hosted by the NH Coalition for a People’s Budget. The People's Budget coalition is planning a series of six Community Conversations. Join us online and in person to learn more about the NH state budget and come together as a community to share our stories of how key components of the budget impact us. Learn more about the NH People’s Budget and how our voices can build a new vision for and impact how state resources can be allocated to better serve our communities!

Tuesday, April 18

Testify against forced outing (SB 272)! - 9 AM. Legislative Office Building (33 N. State St. Concord. Hosted by 603Equality, Granite State Progress. Join us to hold signs in front of the State House at 9 AM, then sign in to testify against SB 272, the other so-called "parental bill of rights" that passed the Senate. This is now the last anti-LGBTQ bill standing, and it will take a lot to defeat it in the House. Now that the bill has gone from the Senate to the House, the whole process (public hearing, committee recommendation, full house vote) starts all over again. LBBTQ+ children matter and need safe and trusted adults. Forcing anyone to come out to anyone before they're ready is wrong. Full stop.

Defining a Faithful Farm Bill to Protect our Climate - 1 PM. Hosted by AFSC. Join AFSC and partners for the latest in our series of webinars on the Farm Bill. This month we will focus on advocating for a faithful Farm Bill that protects our climate. We will also learn how faith communities can urge Congress to champion a climate-conscious, faithful, and just transition in our food and agriculture system.

Worker’s Memorial Dinner – 5:30 PM to 8:30 PM. Plumbers & Steamfitters Hall – 161 Londonderry Tpk. Hooksett. There are millions of workplace injuries nationwide every year and thousands of deaths. Workplace fatalities and injuries often have devastating effects on both workers and their families and usually happen without warning. Ongoing attention, training and awareness efforts can save lives and prevent tragedy and heartbreak. We hope to raise awareness about the thousands of individuals who are injured or killed at work every day.

Wednesday, April 20

Workers Vigil – 12 PM to 1 PM. State House – 107 N. Main St. Concord. Hosted by NH Coalition for Occupational Safety and Health. Join us We are calling for policies that show a safe workplace is fundamental!

Monday, April 24

NH People's Budget Community Conversations  - 6 PM to 7:30 PM. Zoom and Arlington Street Community Center, 36 Arlington St. Nashua. Hosted by the NH Coalition for a People’s Budget. The People's Budget coalition is planning a series of six Community Conversations. Join us online and in person to learn more about the NH state budget and come together as a community to share our stories of how key components of the budget impact us. Learn more about the NH People’s Budget and how our voices can build a new vision for and impact how state resources can be allocated to better serve our communities!

Saturday, April 29

Unitarian Universalist Action of New Hampshire Annual Gathering: Equity and Justice in a Changing Climate – 8:30 AM to 2:30 PM. 274 Pleasant St Concord. Hosted by Universalist Church of Concord. Join fellow Unitarian Universalist from around the state as we gather for our annual meeting, morning keynote and panel open to all. The day will include: morning worship, a plenary discussion, congregation showcase, keynote speaker, fellowship, food, and more.

Sunday, April 30

International Workers Day Rally - 3 PM. Veterans Park in downtown Manchester. Hosted by Party for Socialism & Liberation, AFSC & Partners. We will be celebrating the legacy of May Day and amplifying the demands of workers across the state for fair wages, healthcare, and other necessities, as well as highlighting the connections between the labor movement and all other movements for justice. This family-friendly event is a chance to connect and build solidarity with other NH workers. We will have a rally, music, a food truck and more! Many struggles, one fight - workers of the world unite!

Monday, May 1

Save the Date! May Day Rally – 4 PM to 5:30 PM. At the arch on Main Street, in front of the State House – 107 N. Main St. Concord. Join us to celebrate May Day and the workers who are the foundation of our communities. We will uplift the contributions of immigrant workers, rally in support of our state workers, and rise together against the tide of xenophobia and exclusion that undermines the strength of our diverse, welcoming and beloved community. All are welcome! We will have music, speakers, food, and beverages.

Thursday, May 4

Inclusivity Networking Event  - 5 PM to 6:30 PM. 48 Bridge St. Nashua. Hosted by SBDC. Enjoy an evening of networking, music and cultural food provided by local businesses.

Job Opportunities

City Year New Hampshire is recruiting young adults to serve as tutors and mentors in Manchester schools! Student Success Coaches provide students with critical support and receive incredible benefits themselves. Application deadline is May 5. Apply here or nominate someone.

Marine and Community Conservation Remote Externship - Summer 2023 Remote Externship, part time (10 hours/week, $500 stipend). Jointly hosted by The Nature Conservancy and National Geographic Society. Seeking young people ages 18-25 from around the globe with an interest in learning about approaches to conservation, particularly as it relates to marine conservation and community engagement.  Applications are due by May 1, 2023, and the fall cohort will begin on May 29, 2023.

Be well,

Maggie Fogarty and Grace Kindeke 

AFSC’s New Hampshire "State House Watch" newsletter is published to bring you information about matters being discussed in Concord which relate to racial, social, and economic justice. Bookmark: to read current and past newsletters. 

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. You can support our work by donating to the NH Program online or by sending a check payable to: AFSC-NH, 4 Park Street #304, Concord NH 03301. Thank you!