NH legislation bills

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Key bills waiting on a vote

May 06, 2017

BY: CCNH-LFDA Highlights

The legislative session is winding down, but some major bills are still waiting for a final vote. Here's a list of major legislation to look for in May and June.

HB 144 and HB 157

After the House failed to pass a budget bill, the Senate amended these two House bills to pass a budget. The Senate has until June to pass the bills, and then a committee of Representatives and Senators will meet to negotiate a final budget that both the House and Senate can agree on. 

HB 560 

HB 560 would allow keno in New Hampshire. The House already passed the bill and wanted to include keno revenue in the next state budget. However, the Senate has voted against keno in recent years, and it's not likely to pass this year, either. 

HB 640

This bill would decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana in New Hampshire. The bill already passed the House, and the Senate is expected to pass the bill May 11. 

SB 3 

SB 3 tightens voter registration laws. For example, it requires someone who moves to New Hampshire within thirty days of voting to show proof they intend to stay in New Hampshire - for example by showing a lease or driver's license. The bill passed the Senate and is working its way through the House. 

SB 66

This so-called "fetal homicide bill" includes fetuses as potential victims under state homicide laws. The bill is written to prevent charges against the mother of the fetus. The House and Senate have tried to pass similar bills in recent years, but failed to agree on the age of the fetuses covered by the law. SB 66 includes fetuses twenty weeks and older. 

SB 128

SB 128 would allow Eversource and other electric utilities to buy space on gas pipelines or electricity from new transmission line projects, like the Northern Pass Project. The Public Utilities Commission would still have to approve any purchases. This bill could make a significant difference in how ratepayers are involved in the funding new energy infrastructure. 

SB 131

This bill provides funding for additional law enforcement officers and overtime related to drug enforcement. The bill already passed the Senate and is waiting for a final vote in the House. 

SB 191

This bill would increase state education funding for full-day kindergarten programs. Right now the state funds all kindergarten programs as if they are half-day programs. SB 191 is under review in the House Finance committee, but has already received preliminary votes in favor from the House and Senate. 

Local Funding Bills: SB 38, SB 56, and SB 57

SB 38 increases local funding for road and bridge projects. This was one of the priorities Gov. Sununu identified in his budget address.

SB 56 provides increased state education funding for school districts that were short-changed in the last school funding formula, which capped funding for fast-growing districts.

SB 57 provides state grants for local drinking and wastewater projects.

All three bills passed the Senate and are in the House Finance committee.

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