May 28, 2021
To my constituents in Allenstown, Epsom, & Pittsfield:
This week, my committee finished its meetings for the year by recommending the last two Senate bills. SB 133, our licensing omnibus, was amended as we had agreed in previous meetings, then passed unanimously.
SB 155 was not so agreeable. The original seven sections (one deleted as unnecessary) were amended as we had previously discussed – mostly for clarity. The additional section added by a separate hearing bans discrimination on the basis of immunization status, a so-called vaccine passport. This was contentious, as all the Democrats were opposed to the idea and one Republican left early. One even insisted that vaccine passports were imaginary, and that it wasn’t an issue in New Hampshire – even though employees of two large organizations (not in health care) showed us their company policies. So, after some heated debate, we tied 9-9 on that section and will present the bill with two amendments – identical until you get to the last section.
The House will meet on June 3rd and 4th, to vote on all Senate bills. My committee agreed on all but two of ours, so most of them will be voted on the consent calendar, all the non-controversial bills at once. We will debate SB 155, and maybe SB 105: the omnibus on commemorations, which we amended to be only solar eclipse day. I’ll be defending our choice to not add an eleventh state song and not commemorate metastatic breast cancer day.