We learned that there are some very musically talented people in our House Chamber as demonstrated by Rep. Jerry Stringham who did an amazing job of singing the National Anthem for us today.
We learned that a grand array of awful legislation can, and does, get passed not only by the House, but in the Senate too. There are Senate bills that the House is voting on now that are almost identical to House bills that we have already voted on. What is even more disturbing is that some Senate bills that we are seeing have language in them from House bills that never made it out of House Committee. Oh the games that legislators play… or is it a form of recycling?
We learned that when it comes to Granite Advantage Health Care (Medicaid Expansion), the Senate Majority Democrats voted to water down the work requirements that were agreed upon by SB313 in 2018 with their bill SB290-FN. House Majority Democrats gave that a thumbs up today as well. They really do hate that work requirement for able bodied Medicaid recipients. They do, however, want to fund job training (SB2-FN) programs to the tune of $4 Million dollars. Granite Advantage recipients need not apply.
We learned that the House Majority Democrats are OK with collecting various health data (SB111) for the State’s healthcare database, but do not… I repeat DO NOT … even consider collecting any information about abortions performed in NH. That information is apparently unnecessary and confidential and in this case abortion is NOT considered “Healthcare”.
We learned that 1 in 6 couples have fertility issues and House Majority Democrats voted to mandate that health insurers offer coverage for fertility treatment (SB279-FN). Not only will this hurt small businesses in NH as a result of much higher health insurance premium costs to them, but it will make the cost of health insurance in NH more expensive all around. Mandates such as these always seem to cause “multiple” problems.
We learned that despite being warned about impending costly lawsuits to school districts and the absolute possibility of Title IX conflicts, House Majority Democrats wished to plow ahead with legislation dealing with anti-discrimination policies in public schools (SB263). In typical style, an amendment to correct potential problems created by this bill was rejected and as usual no questions were taken by proponents of this legislation. That sounds discriminatory to me, don’t you agree?
We learned that the NH Senate Majority Democrats are once again throwing NH businesses and employers under the minimum wage bus by passing SB10. They refuse to listen to the facts about how this will hurt NH businesses and that people may find their hours cut or jobs eliminated as a result of minimum wage policies. Interestingly enough public hearings testimony revealed that people aren’t looking for a higher minimum wage, but instead are looking for better paying jobs. This is something completely lost on the Majority party in BOTH chambers.
We learned that Senate Majority Democrats always talk about the importance of privacy, except of course when LLC’s donate money to political campaigns. SB156 will now require that LLC’s disclose the names of all members and allocate contribution amounts to each name when a political contribution is made by the LLC. This of course violates their privacy since membership of LLC’s is not otherwise public information. In other news, they killed a bill (SB66) which would have prohibited candidates for the non-partisan positions of Secretary of State and Treasurer from making contributions to candidates in the House or Senate, political parties or committees. Are these really the same people who forever talk about wanting to take the money out of politics?
We learned that the Majority Senate Democrats found it fitting to pass legislation to dictate how the House and Senate deal with sexual harassment complaints and codify procedures for it in State Statute (SB235-FN). Instead of dealing with harassment policies in Chamber Rules where this type of thing belongs, they were more interested making policies and procedures statutory in nature and in spending taxpayer money to create new positions of Human Resource Professional and independent investigators. Maybe this is part of their NH State House job creation program.
Finally, we learned that the State Legislature likes to micromanage municipalities even down to the very last light bulb. They passed SB307-FN which mandates that municipalities enact local ordinances to conserve energy in their outdoor lighting with color correlated temperatures (aka “bulb hues”) no less! Oh, and they also are seeking “dark sky compliance” so that light pollution won’t be an issue in NH. Select board members take note… you will not be kept in the dark on this one!
Tomorrow, more Senate Bills arrive in House Chambers. Will they be more copies of House bills already passed, rejected, retained or tabled? Or will they be some totally new topic for consideration? Stay tuned to find out.