RAYMOND — The session started off passing the Consent Calendar which had a total of 96 bills, 50 that were ITL (kill). We then went to the Regular Calendar.
HB-1361 - relative to fiscal notes on bills. Fiscal notes are notes that are attached to a bill so that people reading the bill can tell if the bill will cost or save money if passed. We have been getting some notes saying "awaiting information" and other frivolous information. This bill prohibits the Legislative Budget Office from providing such notes. A-0499h YES VV. Bill passed OTP-A YES VV.
HB-1650 - relative to the interstate Health Care Compact. This compact recognizes that New Hampshire's health care needs are best solved by those here in New Hampshire, and not by Washington, DC regulators trying to force all 50 states into the same one-size-fits-all solution. Bill asks the United States Congress to vote to give NH an option in crafting their own innovative health care programs. Bill passed OTP RC 253-92. Bill goes to Commerce and Consumer Affairs as 2nd committee.
HB-1128 - relative to ignition interlock device recalibration and date reports. Bill requires that service providers of ignition interlock devices report failures to pass the breath test to the prosecutor or prosecuting agency, treatment provider, probation officer, and defense attorney by giving these entities secure electronic access to the data via the interlock provider's web-based portal. A-0425h YES VV. Bill passed OTP-A D 197-143.
HR-20 - urging the federal government to allow the cultivation of hemp for industrial purposes. This resolution will urge the Congress of the United States to remove the existing barriers they impose,
enabling our state to regulate the commercial production of hemp. Resolution passed D 260-41.
HB-1281 - establishing a committee to study alternative medical insurance coverage for elected state officials. Intent is to have committee find a less expensive and more beneficial health care option for active and former elected officials. Passed OTP YES VV.
HB-1686-FN - relative to state contracts and making an appropriation therefore. Bill requires that all state contracts awarded by RFP's to be posted on the state website after the bid is awarded, allowing unsuccessful bidder(s) to see the difference between their bid and the winning bid. Amendment adds $4K to buy laptops for the Executive Councilors use, thus starting to eliminate the excess paper used today. A-0643h YES VV. Bill OTP-A YES VV.
HB-1534-FN - repealing the self-funding of the Department of Labor. Bill returns the Department of Labor to its traditional funding source, the General Fund. This will have no direct funding impact, General Fund will go up $1.4M, while the Restricted Fund will decrease $1.4M. A-0359h YES VV. Bill OTP-A YES VV. Bill goes to Senate.
HB-1666-FN - relative to legislative approval of collective bargaining agreements entered into by the state. As amended, bill requires legislative approval of any collective bargaining contracts entered into by the state, providing more transparency and oversight in the approval of collective bargaining contracts. A-0662h YES VV. Bill passed OTP-A RC 232-119. Bill goes to Senate.
HB-1298 - relative to the definition of "public use" under the eminent domain procedure act. Bill restricts what property can be used for when it is taken by eminent domain for public use. It restricts: private economic development, private commercial enterprise, including increased tax revenues, increased employment opportunities, use by a for-profit, private, participant funded transmission line or facility or other uses not needed for system reliability. A-0414h YES VV. Bill passed OTP-A YES VV.
HB-1227 - relative to disqualification of certain members of the General Court. Bill clarifies that no member of the General Court may hold their seat while simultaneously in the employment of a political party, a committee of a political party or a lobbyist. A-0435h YES VV. Floor A-0795h YES VV. Bill passed OTP D 229-85. Bill sent to Constitutional Review and Statutory Recodification committee.
HB-1294 - relative to applications for abatement of property taxes. Bill makes some minor changes making the process easier for taxpayers to apply for a property tax abatement. Amendment allows a guardian or heir to apply for incapacitated or recently deceased property owner of record. A-0604h YES VV. Bill passed OTP-A YES VV.
HB-1436 - establishing a committee to oversee the management of natural resources by the Department of Resources and Economic Development. Bill looks to establish an oversight committee relative to the management including the park system and forest and lands. Passed OTP YES VV, sent to Executive Departments and Administration.
HB-1670 - apportioning executive council districts. Bill had much debate as it moves the councilors district lines. A-0518h YES D 177-99. Floor A-0725h NO RC 96-179. Bill passed OTP-A RC 180-95.
HB-13-5 - re-establishing the exemption from property taxation for telecommunications poles and conduits and establishing a committee to study how utilities are taxed by the state and municipalities. An attempt to "indefinitely postpone passage" failed RC 127-182. Floor A-0832h Yes D 239-13. OTP-A failed RC 133-161. ITL 181-113. Motion to reconsider vote failed D 90-204. Since this motion failed, the bill can not be reconsidered on the floor: it's dead.
(Editor's Note: NH State Representative Mike Kappler can be reached at email@example.com.)