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Very Active Day In The NH Legislature: Round Up Of Legislation Moved Today

NH House-2Today a ton of bills were passed and killed in the NH House and Senate.  They range in topics but all have an impact on the future of our state.  Below are press releases on a variety of bills that had votes today.


 

Senator Bette Lasky Applauds Senate Passage of Online Voter Registration

Concord, NH –Today, the NH Senate passed SB 507, authorizing online voter registration on a voice vote. Senator Bette Lasky (D-Nashua), the prime sponsor of SB 507 released the following comments after the Senate vote:

“Making the process of registering to vote and casting your ballot more consistent and accessible is something we can all agree on and I’m pleased that my Senate colleagues supported this important legislation,” said Senator Lasky. “Allowing our citizens to register to vote online would help create a more accessible system and increase the number of citizens exercising one of their most important rights. As the First-In-The-Nation Presidential Primary state, New Hampshire needs to continually move forward as technology advances and be an example to the rest of the country.”

23 states have already implemented online voter registration and 5 more states will be added to that list this year. Research has also shown in these states that online voter registration has sustained or increased voter registration.  

“New Hampshire has built a strong reputation for voter participation, but we can always do more to help busy Granite Staters take part in our elections. I thank my Senate colleagues for their support and for creating a more effective and efficient election process for our Granite State citizens.”


Statement from Governor Hassan on House Passage of Ten-Year Transportation Improvement Plan 

CONCORD – Governor Maggie Hassan issued the following statement on the Ten-Year Transportation Improvement Plan passed today by the New Hampshire House of Representatives: 

“A solid and modern transportation infrastructure is critical to the success of our people and businesses, and the Ten-Year Transportation Improvement Plan passed by the House today advances a number of critical transportation goals that will help build on our bipartisan progress over the last several years. This includes maintaining and preserving our roads and bridges, completing the widening of Interstate 93, accelerating construction of Exit 4A in Londonderry and Derry and the first phase of widening the portion of Route 106 critical for access to the New Hampshire Motor Speedway.

“However, I am disappointed that the leveraging of federal funds for the environmental and engineering work necessary to bring commuter rail from Boston to Nashua and Manchester was removed. The business community continues to call on us to take action because commuter rail will improve access to the entire region, provide new housing and transportation opportunities, spur economic development and create jobs. I remain committed to working with members from both parties, local communities, the federal government, our businesses and Massachusetts to find a consensus and make this vital project a reality.”


Senator Bette Lasky Praises Passage of Public-Private Partnerships for Intermodal Infrastructure and Transportation Projects

CONCORD- Today, the NH Senate pass SB 549, which would allow the state to enter into agreements with private entities in order to fund intermodal infrastructure and transportation projects. After the vote, Senator Bette Lasky (D-Nashua), prime sponsor of SB 549, released the following comments: 

“Enabling public-private partnerships (P3s) is an important step toward meeting our infrastructure needs with limited financial resources from the state and I thank the Senate for their support,” said Senator Lasky. “Improving our transportation infrastructure benefits all Granite Staters and by enabling the state to work with private funders, our state can access additional funding opportunities with greater efficiencies, which will save the state money.”

SB 549 was developed through the work of a public-private partnership (P3s) study committee and the committee’s recommendation that New Hampshire pursue this funding option. According to the study committee’s report, 33 other states already have laws authorizing P3s for highway and bridge projects. 

“A strong and dynamic transportation infrastructure helps sustain our families and businesses. Finding creative and innovative solutions to help finance transportation projects when state funds are unavailable is essential to not only expanding economic growth, but expanding opportunity for all Granite Staters. I am happy that the Senate moved this legislation forward so that we can sustain and promote the growth of our state’s businesses and economy, while protecting taxpayer dollars and minimizing the financial risk to our state.”


Senator David Pierce Statement on Tabling of SB 531 (Senate version of the Medicaid Expansion)

CONCORD – Today, the State Senate agreed to table SB 531, which would have reauthorized the NH Health Protection Program, in order to take up the reauthorization in HB 1696, which passed the House yesterday on a bipartisan vote. After the conclusion of the Senate session, SB 531 prime sponsor Sen. David Pierce (D-Lebanon) released the following statement: 

“While Senate Democrats would have preferred to reauthorize the NH Health Protection Program as drafted in SB 531, we are committed to finding a solution on reauthorization that has broad, bipartisan support and agreed to table our bill. Just as we did two years ago, we need to come together, across party and ideological lines to ensure that 48,000 hard working Granite Staters continue to have access to quality, affordable health care the health and financial security that comes with it.” 

“There’s no question that the NH Health Protection Program has been a success and met the goals we set out to achieve when we passed SB 413 in 2014. Our hospitals have seen a significant decline in inpatient, outpatient and emergency room visits by uninsured Granite Staters, leading to a decrease in uncompensated care, which is a hidden tax on us all. By reducing uncompensated care, we also reduce the healthcare cost-shifting onto our people and businesses.”

“Continuing the program is also essential as we continue to combat the heroin and opioid epidemic. Thousands of Granite Staters have accessed substance abuse and behavioral health services through coverage under expansion and reauthorizing the program is critical to increasing treatment capacity in New Hampshire.” 

“HB 1696, which was passed by a strong bipartisan vote in the House yesterday, will ensure that we continue this critical program that strengthens the health of our workforce and boosts our economy. I, along with my Senate Democratic colleagues, stand ready to renew this important program and we look forward to working with our Republican colleagues in the Senate to get this critical legislation to the Governor’s desk as soon as possible.”


Senator Martha Fuller Clark Praises Senate Passage of Legislation to Protect Children from Illegal Adoptions

Concord, NH –Today, the Senate passed SB 543, which prohibits unauthorized advertising for adoptions and ensures that all adoptions follow state guidelines. Senator Martha Fuller Clark (D-District 21), prime sponsor of SB 543, released the following comments after today’s Senate session:  

“SB 543 addresses a gap in our current law that we could have never thought about just a few years ago: advertising children for sale or adoption online. While this problem may seem outrageous, at the public hearing, we heard examples from other states where babies and children were being offered for sale or trade on websites.” 

“In our ever-changing world, we must make sure to protect our children and SB 543 ensures that if a parent decides to make the difficult decision to give a child up for adoption, it is done so through a safe and regulated process. I thank the Senate for unanimously supporting the passage of this much needed important legislation.”


Governor Hassan on House Vote to Pass Net Metering Legislation 

CONCORD – Following a bipartisan vote by the New Hampshire House of Representatives to pass House Bill 1116, relative to net energy metering, Governor Maggie Hassan issued this statement:

“The solar industry is a critical part of our growing clean energy economy in New Hampshire, which recently ranked New Hampshire as one of the top five states for renewable energy and is creating good-paying, high-quality jobs, spurring economic development and helping combat climate change. Businesses and families across the state are utilizing solar to lower their energy bills and to increase their energy independence, contributing to the diverse and reliable energy supply that is critical to a more affordable and more innovative energy future.

“Lifting the cap on net metering is essential to the continued success of New Hampshire’s solar industry, and I applaud the House for its bipartisan vote to pass this critical measure. The Senate has already supported this legislation, and I urge them to concur with the version passed by the House and send this bill to my desk as quickly as possible so that we can lift the cap on net metering.”


Senator Woodburn Praises Addition of Biodiesel to List of Renewable Energy Sources 

CONCORD – Today, the NH Senate passed SB 386, which adds biodiesel producers to renewable energy classes in order to incentivize more biodiesel production. After the vote, North Country Senator Jeff Woodburn released the following comments: 

“Encouraging the production and use of local renewable fuels like biodiesel not only makes sense for our environment, but helps boost our local economy. Innovative companies like White Mountain Biodiesel in the North Country are already using biodiesel to power the Mount Washington Cog Railway and passage of SB 386 helps to encourage more companies to do the same. As a co-sponsor of this bill, I was very proud to support not only expanding the use of domestically-produced renewable fuels, but I was proud to stand up for our North Country businesses.”


Senator Woodburn Praises Passage of Legislation to Protect Victims of Unauthorized Disclosure of Sexually Explicit Images

CONCORD – Following the bipartisan passage of SB 465, which closes a loophole in current law in order to protect victims of nonconsensual dissemination of private sexual images, Sen. Jeff Woodburn released the following statement:

“Disclosure of sexually explicit material without consent and for no legitimate purpose causes immediate, devastating, and potentially irreversible harm to victims of this crime,” said Senator Woodburn. “Unfortunately, rapid advances in technology have created a loophole in our state laws that prevent prosecution of this crime. SB 465 closes this loophole and establishes a penalty for this devastating crime.”

Twenty-six other states have enacted similar laws to deal with the unauthorized disclosure of sexually explicit materials. 

“The ability of people to gain access to and distribute private, sexually explicit material has raised all sorts of issues that we could have never imagined even just a few years ago. Police and prosecutors are seeing an increase in these types of crimes, but need the tools to protect victims of this crime. I thank my Senate colleagues, especially the members of the Senate Judiciary Committee who worked to make this a better bill, for their support.”

Hillary for New Hampshire To Kick Off GOTV With Grassroots Events Across the State

Campaign Surrogates, New Hampshire Leaders Will Fire Up Thousands of Volunteers Preparing To Turn Out Voters for Hillary Clinton

Manchester – Hillary for New Hampshire will officially kick off the “Get Out The Vote” phase of the campaign on Friday, January 29th with just a few days until the Iowa caucus and less than two weeks until the New Hampshire Primary.  At hundreds of grassroots events across the state throughout the weekend, Hillary Clinton supporters will be talking to their friends and neighbors about how as president, Hillary Clinton will make a difference for families and stop Republicans – like Ted Cruz and Donald Trump – from ripping up the progress Democrats have worked so hard to make.

Over the weekend, actor and environmental activist Ted Danson, feminist icon Gloria Steinem, Senator Jeanne Shaheen, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, Governor Maggie Hassan, Connecticut Governor Dan Malloy, Boston Mayor Marty Walsh, Congresswoman Annie Kuster, Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro, Congressman Seth Moulton, Congressman Bill Keating, Congressman Michael Capuano, Congressman Jim McGovern, Congressman Stephen Lynch, Congressman Joe Kennedy, Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty, Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney, Congressman Joe Courtney, former Congressman Tim Bishop, Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healy, Massachusetts Treasurer Deb Goldberg, Maine Attorney General Janet Mills, EMILY’s List founder Ellen Malcolm, former Ambassador Joseph Wilson, former CIA operative Valerie Plame, and New Hampshire elected and civic leaders will all attend grassroots events in New Hampshire between January 29th and January 31st to greet volunteers and lay out why Hillary Clinton is the candidate with the right experience and the best policies for Granite State families.

“Everyday Hillary Clinton reminds us this campaign is about the people she will make a difference for as President, and empowering them to take part in the election is one of our top priorities.  Over the final twelve days of the New Hampshire primary, we are going to be getting out the vote for Hillary Clinton so we can nominate the candidate best prepared to take on the Republicans and get results for the American people,” said Hillary for New Hampshire State Director Mike Vlacich. “We started this campaign in April, preparing to deliver on Hillary Clinton’s pledge to earn every vote and take nothing for granted and prepared for a competitive race. Every vote counts in New Hampshire – especially with a border state candidate on the ballot.”

On top of traditional campaign organizing, Hillary for New Hampshire is officially launching an online application that enables voters to build a personalized, digital card expressing their commitment to vote for Hillary Clinton in their state’s primary or caucus. Commitment cards are a traditional, offline organizing technique that the campaign is now using online to engage supporters who know Hillary Clinton has been in the trenches fighting by their side for decades and will fight and deliver for them every day as President.  The Commit to Caucus, or Commit to Vote, app is available at http://hillaryclinton.com/commit.

Hillary for New Hampshire has eight GOTV Centers and 11 local offices which serve as hubs of activity for the more than 10,178 Granite Staters who have taken part in the campaign, joining organizers in communities across the state.

Since Hillary Clinton launched her campaign in April, Hillary for New Hampshire has been committed to delivering a grassroots community organizing campaign that connects supporters and builds relationships with Granite Staters through one-on-one meetings, small gatherings, and online engagement. At all of the weekend’s events, volunteers will be asking voters to fill out a “Commit to Vote” card, pledging to vote for Clinton in the first in the nation primary.

Below are a few events happening this weekend. Media interested in attending any of the events are kindly asked to RSVP to jmcclain@hillaryclinton.com. If you would like to attend an event not listed or that is closer to you, please inquire.

WHAT: Hanover for Hillary Organizing Event with Gloria Steinem

WHEN: Friday, January 29th at 10:45 am

WHERE: Morano Gelato, 57 Main St #101, Hanover

WHAT: Women for Hillary Organizing Event with Gloria Steinem and Senator Jeanne Shaheen

WHEN: Friday, January 29th at 1:30 pm

WHERE: Live Juice, 5  S Main Street, Concord

WHAT: Laconia Volunteer Meet & Greet with Ted Danson

WHEN: Friday, January 29th at 2:30 pm

WHERE: 373 Court Street, Laconia

WHAT: Manchester Volunteer Meet & Greet with Gloria Steinem

WHEN: Friday, January 29th at 2:50 pm

WHERE: 66 Hanover Street, Suite 300, Manchester

WHAT: Phonebank with Gloria Steinem

WHEN: Friday, January 29th at 4:30 pm

WHERE: 2800 Lafayette Road, Portsmouth

WHAT: Concord Phonebank Meet & Greet with Rhode Island Senator Sheldon Whitehouse and Ted Danson & Congresswoman Annie Kuster

WHEN: Friday, January 29th at 5:15 pm

WHERE: 109 N. State Street, Concord

WHAT: Nashua Canvass Kick-Off with Governor Maggie Hassan & MA Congressman Joseph P. Kennedy

WHEN: Saturday, January 30th at 10 am

WHERE: Ledge Street Elementary,139 Ledge Street, Nashua

WHAT: Keene Canvass Kick-Off with Connecticut Governor Dan Malloy and CT Congressman Joe Courtney

WHEN: Saturday, January 30th at 10 am

WHERE: 265 Washington Street, Keene

WHAT: Exeter Canvass Kick-Off with MA Congressman Seth Moulton

WHEN: Saturday, January 30th at 10 am

WHERE: 30 Court Street, Exeter

WHAT: Manchester Canvass Kick-Off with Boston Mayor Marty Walsh

WHEN: Saturday, January 30th at 10 am

WHERE: Montessori School, 698 Beech Street, Manchester

WHAT: Hampton Canvass Kick-Off with MA Congressman Michael Capuano

WHEN: Saturday, January 30th at 10 am

WHERE: 703 Ocean Blvd, Suite C3, Hampton

WHAT: Portsmouth Canvass Kick-Off with Senator Jeanne Shaheen, Massachusetts AG Maura Healy and Maine AG Janet Mills

WHEN: Saturday, January 30th at 10 am

WHERE: 2800 Lafayette Road, Unit 10A, Portsmouth

WHAT: Peterborough Canvass Kick-Off with Joe Wilson and Valerie Plame

WHEN: Saturday, January 30th at 10 am

WHERE: 87 Wilder Farm Road, Peterborough

WHAT: Winchester Canvass Kick-Off with Former NY Congressman Tim Bishop

WHEN: Saturday, January 30th at 10 am

WHERE: 19 Parker Street, Winchester, NH 03470

WHAT: Concord Canvass Kick-Off with Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty

WHEN: Saturday, January 30th at 10 am

WHERE: 109 North State Street, Concord

WHAT: Londonderry Canvass Kick-Off with MA Congressman Bill Keating

WHEN: Saturday, January 30th at 11 am

WHERE: 89 Hovey Road, Londonderry

WHAT: Exeter Canvass Kick-Off with Governor Dan Malloy

WHEN: Saturday, January 30th at 1 pm

WHERE: 130A Water Street, Exeter

WHAT: Berlin Canvass Kick-Off with Congresswoman Annie Kuster

WHEN: Saturday, January 30th at 1 pm

WHERE: 52 Main Street, Berlin

WHAT: Keene Canvass Kick-Off with Former NY Congressman Tim Bishop, Joe Wilson and Valerie Plame, and Ambassador Dan Benjamin

WHEN: Saturday, January 30th at 1 pm

WHERE: 265 Washington Street, Keene

WHAT: Concord Canvass Kick-Off with MA Congressman Jim McGovern

WHEN: Saturday, January 30th at 1 pm

WHERE: 9 South Spring Street, Concord

WHAT: Dover Canvass Kick-Off with MA Congressman Stephen Lynch

WHEN: Saturday, January 30th at 1 pm

WHERE: 903 Central Avenue, Dover

WHAT: Salem Canvass Kick-Off with MA Treasurer Deb Goldberg & Congresswoman Niki Tsongas

WHEN: Saturday, January 30th at 1 pm

WHERE: 15 Ermer Road, Salem

WHAT: Derry Field Office Volunteer Meet & Greet with Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty

WHEN: Saturday, January 30th at 1 pm

WHERE: 4 Peabody Annex Road, Derry

WHAT: Keene Phonebank Kick-Off with Former NY Congressman Tim Bishop

WHEN: Saturday, January 30th at 3 pm

WHERE: 265 Washington Street, Keene

WHAT: Lebanon Phonebank Kick-Off with Joe Wilson and Valerie Plame

WHEN: Saturday, January 30th at 3:30 pm

WHERE: 85 Mechanic Street, Lebanon

WHAT: Lebanon Canvass Kick-Off with NY Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney

WHEN: Sunday, January 31st at 10 am

WHERE: 85 Mechanic Street, Lebanon

WHAT: Salem Canvass Kick-Off with Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro

WHEN: Sunday, January 31st at 10 am

WHERE: 15 Ermer Road, Salem

WHAT: Keene Canvass Kick-Off with Former NY Congressman Tim Bishop

WHEN: Sunday, January 31st at 10 am

WHERE: 265 Washington Street, Keene

WHAT: Concord Canvass Kick-Off with NY Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney

WHEN: Sunday, January 31st at 1 pm

WHERE: 109 N. State Street, Concord

WHAT: Portsmouth Canvass Kick-Off with Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro

WHEN: Sunday, January 31st at 1 pm

WHERE: 35 Middle Road, Portsmouth

WHAT: Portsmouth Phonebank Kick-Off with NY Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney

WHEN: Sunday, January 31st at 3 pm

WHERE: 2800 Lafayette Road, Portsmouth

WHAT: Plymouth Phonebank Kick-Off with Congresswoman Annie Kuster

WHEN: Sunday, January 31st at 4 pm

WHERE: 107 Main Street, Plymouth

Portsmouth should shut down UBER X service

uber-logo

(PORTSMOUTH, NH) Representing client Great Bay Taxi in pleadings filed today in Rockingham County Superior Court, attorney and public safety advocate Joe Plaia again makes the case that the City of Portsmouth’s failure to regulate Uber X in the same way that it does Great Bay Taxi is harming this well-established local business:  

“The influx of an unlimited amount of UBER X drivers into the small Portsmouth market, by not having to comply with the same regulations has threatened the survival of Great Bay Taxi and the entire taxi industry in the City of Portsmouth.  GBT (Great Bay Taxi) has lost enough revenue from weekend fares that it has been required to remove two vehicles from its fleet because they can no longer afford to pay the commercial insurance for those vehicles.”

Uber’s rapid expansion has been marked by their drivers committing crimes against their passengers.  The crimes range from assaults, thefts, sexual assaults, kidnapping and rape.  The concern is so great that many other states are taking action to ensure Uber is either banned in their jurisdiction or subject to the same regulations other taxi companies abide by.  In addition, Uber drivers have also been in traffic accidents that have resulted in injuries to their passengers, and in one case the death of a six year-old girl.

A state legislative committee, created in response to public safety concerns surrounding Uber, will begin hearings later in the summer. 

Concord Monitor On The Damaging Consequences Of Unpaid-For Tax Giveaways

GOP Speaker Shawn Jasper Sends Lawmakers On Vacation

Concord, N.H. – As New Hampshire Republicans continue to push for unpaid-for corporate tax giveaways that would blow a $90 million hole in future budgets, the Concord Monitor examines the damaging consequences of unpaid-for tax giveaways. 

The Monitor reported, “So how did the cuts work out for Kansas? Did Brownback’s predictions come true? They didn’t. The state found itself with a gaping deficit and with shortfalls as far as the eye could see. Lawmakers this session had to figure out how to plug a $400 million budget hole, and their session stretched to an epic 113 days.” And in order to preserve the business tax giveaways, “the Kansas legislature ended up increasing sales taxes to the second-highest rate in the country.” 

The Monitor concluded that contrary to Republicans’ claims, if tax cuts for businesses “contribute to instability in state budgeting, such cuts could actually drive businesses away.” 

While Governor Hassan continues to reiterate her willingness to return to work immediately to pass a balanced, compromise budget that is fiscally responsible and meets the needs of New Hampshire, GOP House Speaker Shawn Jasper sent members on vacation, telling lawmakers “there will be no legislative activity this month and no mileage payments for traveling to and from Concord.” 

Governor Hassan and Executive Council Proclaim Earth Day

CONCORD – Highlighting the importance of protecting New Hampshire’s natural resources, Governor Maggie Hassan and the Executive Council proclaimed today as Earth Day in New Hampshire.

“On Earth Day, we recognize that we must always preserve what has made New Hampshire such a special place to live, work and raise a family – our beautiful natural resources. Our unmatched natural beauty attracts visitors from around the globe and has always been critical to our economy, our culture and our high quality of life. We must always be vigilant in our conservation efforts, and today, I encourage all Granite Staters to recommit themselves to protecting our natural resources for future generations.”

The full text of the Governor and Council’s proclamation is below and attached.

State of New Hampshire

By Her Excellency

Margaret Wood Hassan, Governor

 

A Proclamation

EARTH DAY 

APRIL 22, 2015

 

WHEREAS, This year marks the 45th Anniversary ofEarth Day; and

WHEREAS, The protection of our forests, air and water quality, fisheries, and other natural resources are important to the health and quality of life of our citizens and to the economy of New Hampshire; and

WHEREAS, By the late 21st century, climate change could cut New Hampshire’s winter snow season in half, cause sea levels to rise, and increase summer temperatures; and

WHEREAS, Greenhouse gas emissions and other man-made pollutants are the key contributors to climate change and negatively affect our air and water quality; and

WHEREAS, New Hampshire state government has taken steps to lead by example by reducing energy use of state operations; and

WHEREAS, In addition to our commitment to control harmful emissions that negatively affect our air, our water, and our earth, important programs like the Land and Community Heritage Investment Program provide vital funds to support land conservation efforts and help support our goals to protect wildlife habitat, water quality, and other natural resources; and

WHEREAS, Every resident and business has the opportunity to reduce their environmental impact and protect our environment by taking small steps like conserving energy, using reusable water bottles, walking, biking or carpooling when possible, recycling at home and in the work place, and buying local products;

NOW, THEREFORE, I MARGARET WOOD HASSAN, GOVERNOR of the State of New Hampshire, do hereby proclaim APRIL 22, 2015, as EARTH DAY in the State of New Hampshire and urge all citizens and businesses to take actions to address climate change and improve our air and water quality, as well as protect our wildlife and environment in order to maintain the high quality of life in our state.

Stamp Your Money While You Eat Free Ice Cream!

2015-04-14 Free Cone DayToday, April 14th is “Free Cone Day” at Ben & Jerry’s nationwide.  At the 940 Elm Street location in Manchester, NH, ice cream lovers coming by for their free scoop between noon and 8:00 pm will also be able to Stamp their money and learn more about the Stamp Stampede.

StampStampede.org is tens of thousands of Americans supporting the movement to get money out of politics by legally stamping messages onto US currency.

Here in New Hampshire, more than 60 small businesses have already joined the Stampede and are hosting “stamping stations” where customers can stamp their currency and learn more about the issue.  Almost 1,000 Granite Staters are beautifying their bucks with messages like “Not to be Used for Bribing Politicians.”  Each stamped bill is seen by an estimated 875 people as it circulates through the local economy.

At the grassroots level, there is broad bipartisan support for overturning Citizens United and ending the influence of special interests. Four out of five New Hampshire Republicans think Congress is more interested in special interests than its constituents.  More than two-thirds of New Hampshire voters support a Constitutional amendment that would overturn Citizens United.  So far, 68 of the state’s cities and towns have passed local resolutions asking for a Constitutional amendment.

The state Legislature is considering two measures about Citizens United.  The House passed a bipartisan measure calling for a Constitutional Convention.  The Senate unanimously passed a bill calling for an amendment and setting up a study committee to recommend which proposed amendment to support.  So far, 16 other states have called for a Constitutional amendment to overturn Citizens United and get special interest money out of politics.

The Stamp Stampede was founded by Ben Cohen, co-founder of Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream.

Free Cone Day & Stamp Your Money!
Tuesday, April 14th 12noon to 8:00 pm
Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream
940 Elm Street
Manchester, NH 03101

For other Ben & Jerry’s locations celebrating Free Cone Day, click here.

————————

The Stamp Stampede is tens of thousands of Americans legally stamping messages on our nation’s currency to #GetMoneyOut of Politics. As more and more stamped money spreads, so will the movement to amend the Constitution and overturn Citizens United.

You can get your own stamp online at www.stampstampede.org. Or, if you’re a member of CWA, you can get a stamp from your LPAT coordinator. The average stamped bill is seen by 875 people – which makes stamping a highly-effective way to get the message out about how money in politics is corrupting our government.

It’s time to #GetMoneyOut of politics and take back our government.

At MLK Vigil Tomorrow, MASS Nurses Call For Support of Passing the Inclusive Prosperity Act

Martin Luther King 2

Massachusetts Nurses and Allies to Hold Vigil in Remembrance of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and in Support of Passing the Inclusive Prosperity Act in Honor of His Legacy

Nurses and other allies will gather in front of Congressman Richard Neal’s Springfield office to express their support of the bill, and encourage the Representative to be a supporter

On April 4 1968, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated in Memphis Tennessee.  Just prior to his death, he had turned his attention to issues of poverty and income inequality, an effort he called the Poor People’s Campaign.  It is in remembrance of Dr. King’s work on this issue, that members of the Massachusetts Nurses Association/National Nurses United and allies from Western MA Jobs with Justice, the Progressive Democrats of Massachusetts, and the Pioneer Valley Workers Center, will gather in Springfield this Wednesday April 8. The event is one of 25 similar vigils being held outside Congressional offices in 25 U.S. cities.

When:    Wednesday, April 8 at 11a.m.

Where:   Office of Congressman Richard Neal
300 State St. Springfield, MA 01105

In addition to honoring Dr. King’s legacy, the group will encourage Congressman Richard Neal to sign on to a bill, recently filled in the House of Representatives, which would generate $300 Billion. The Inclusive Prosperity Act, sponsored by Congressman Keith Ellison (D-MN), which is also known as the Robin Hood Tax on Wall Street, would place a small tax on Wall Street, which would generate funding for things like: infrastructure, education, ending student debt, healthcare, housing and retirement security, and go a long way to reducing the obscene income and wealth inequality in our nation. By co-sponsoring this legislation, Congressman Neal will be honoring the struggle that Dr. King gave his life for 47 years ago this week.

Economists estimate that a tiny surcharge of no more than a nickel on every $10 in trades of stocks, bonds, and derivatives —a tax that is proportionally smaller than what most Americans pay for a pair of shoes – could increase revenues collected by the Treasury Department by as much as $350 billion annually. That revenue, in turn, can be re-directed from wealthy investors who have surplus income, to poor and working-class Americans who don’t have nearly enough income.

“Inequality in health, still rampant hunger, homelessness and poverty continue to devastate far too many families. The climate crisis puts our planet at risk and is rapidly accelerating extreme weather events, droughts, and epidemics that threaten public health. We need the Robin Hood Tax, best embodied in Rep. Ellison’s bill, to raise the revenues we desperately need to protect our health, our families, our communities, and our nation,” said Patricia Healey, RN, chair of MNA Regional Council 1, and a member of National Nurses United, the largest U.S. organization of nurses that is organizing similar events across the nation.

The Robin Hood Tax campaign is endorsed by 172 national organizations and prominent economists. HR 1464 is patterned after a similar measure  being implemented by 11 countries in the European Union, and already in place in every major financial world market except the United States.

“America¹s working families need their country to invest in them again,” Rep. Ellison said. “The money raised from a wafer-thin tax on  Wall Street¹s high-frequency trades could raise hundreds of billions of dollars to invest in our families, protect our environment, and increase opportunity for all Americans. If the United States joins the  dozens of other nations already benefitting from a financial  transaction tax, we can create millions of jobs, while also reducing  dangerous market volatility.”

For more information on the Robin Hood Tax campaign, visit:  http://www.robinhoodtax.org/media/vigils-legislative-offices-25-cities

Newspapers Across NH Scold O’Brien for Destructive Antics, When Will Kelly Ayotte & GOP Leaders End Their Silence?

Concord, N.H. – Newspapers across the state have repeatedly blasted Bill O’Brien for his childish and harmful behavior, begging the question, when will Kelly Ayotte, Chuck Morse, and Republican Party leaders end their silence and stop endorsing O’Brien as he fights to destroy the New Hampshire House from within.

“Bill O’Brien’s increasingly desperate attempts to grab power for himself and further his own radical anti-middle class agenda are no longer just hurting the Republican Party, they’re threatening the well-being of our middle class families and our economy,” said New Hampshire Democratic Party Chair Ray Buckley. “Kelly Ayotte, Chuck Morse, and Republican Party leaders need to act responsibly and finally call on O’Brien to quit his destructive tactics and radical anti-middle class agenda before he’s able to take our economy backwards again.”

See below for a roundup of editorials from across the state blasting O’Brien’s destructive antics.

Nashua Telegraph: Politics: Dignity is not too much to ask

“The state faces too many important issues over the next two years to have Concord turned into a clown show. Politicians on both sides of the aisle need to work together – as they have done the past two years – to solve problems. That means O’Brien and his minions need to demonstrate a little dignity in defeat.”

Click here for full Nashua Telegraph Editorial.

Nashua Telegraph: They can cry if they want to

“Jasper isn’t the real culprit here. The larger problem is a party mind-set that thinks Bill O’Brien could possibly be an answer to any question New Hampshire voters might be asking. […] voters don’t much care about petty party considerations. They expect the jilted to grow up, get over the heartbreak and put the good of the state first.”

Click here for full Nashua Telegraph Editorial.

Concord Monitor: Tantrum is hurting GOP and the state

“Children see the world in black and white. The O’Brien faction and their leader are acting like spoiled children. Their tantrum is hurting their party, and if it continues, it will embarrass a state that is moving closer to the center of the national spotlight.”

Click here for full Concord Monitor Editorial.

Portsmouth Herald: O’Brien will do anything to gain power

“At first, former House Speaker Bill O’Brien and his rabid supporters, including the outspoken Pam Tucker of Greenland and Fred Rice of Hampton, just looked like a bunch of sore losers throwing a temper tantrum. But their efforts on Thursday to change House rules in order to anoint O’Brien as Republican majority leader fly in the face of the New Hampshire Constitution and show the desperate lengths O’Brien and his cronies will go to grab power from legally elected House Speaker Shawn Jasper and his leadership team. […] These latest actions show O’Brien is not simply a former Massachusetts Democrat who has become a far right-wing ideologue, he is a dangerous demagogue who will stop at nothing to get the power he seems to so desperately crave.”

Click here for full Concord Monitor Editorial.

Keene Sentinel: Republican House members need a time out

“At no point have we heard the put-out GOP leaders indicate anything they’re doing is for the good of the state. Rather, nearly every rebuke of the elected speaker has noted his actions as being detrimental to “the party.” Well, that would be a reasonable stance if only the Republican Party mattered — or governed — in New Hampshire. But those days have long since passed. What needs to happen now is to put aside these very petty squabbles in favor of serving the best interests of the state. […]The next two years will be hard enough to navigate. The GOP-led Legislature will need to find common ground with Democratic Gov. Maggie Hassan. That seems unlikely if its House members can’t even work and play amongst themselves without needing to be sent to the corner.”

Click here for full Keene Sentinel Editorial.

Monadnock Ledger-Transcript: O’Brien denial a coup for voters

“It’s time for O’Brien to let go of the reins of the N.H. House. There is a reason, perhaps many, why he wasn’t elected again to serve as speaker. […] given how our Legislature was run when O’Brien was in charge, Granite Staters should be happy to have someone — anyone — else leading the way for the majority party.”

Click here for full Monadnock Ledger-Transcript Editorial.

Valley News: The O’Brien Rebellion

“In the course of the proceedings, O’Brien demonstrated that this particular leopard had not changed spots, as his backers sought a rule change requiring a roll call vote instead of the traditional secret ballot. […] End of story? No, beginning of GOP civil war.”

Click here for full Valley News Editorial.

Senator Shaheen Votes For CROmnibus Bill While Objecting To Certain Provisions

Immediate Release:

Legislation funds the government while making strategic investments in job creation and economic growth in New Hampshire

(Washington, DC) – Tonight U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) voted in favor of a bipartisan appropriations bill that funds most government operations through the 2015 fiscal year.

“The spending bill we passed tonight invests in strategic priorities that will support job creation, economic growth and our national security,” said Shaheen. “It is far from perfect, but it is the product of a bipartisan compromise that in my mind was better than any alternative. I’m disappointed by certain provisions included in this bill – including the rolling back of important taxpayer protections from risky behavior on Wall Street. But I’d rather pass this imperfect, bipartisan compromise now, than face a partisan Republican bill next year, one that would be more at odds with the priorities I believe best serve New Hampshire’s economy and middle-class families. This legislation will help to continue our economic growth and avert another costly government shutdown.”

Shaheen provisions and priorities included in the final spending bill include:

New Hampshire’s Economy

The bill includes funding for another round of State Trade Export Promotion (STEP) grant program. The STEP program, which Shaheen helped create, is an export initiative that helps states assist small businesses to enter and succeed in the international marketplace. The bill also provides funding to complete the activation of the Berlin Prison which will boost the economy in Northern New Hampshire. Shaheen has fought for the opening of the prison since its funding became at risk and has continued to be a leader in the fight to fully open the facility. She has repeatedly pressed Congress and the Obama Administration to prioritize funding and has highlighted the economic boost the prison would have on one of the most economically distressed areas of the state. The facility is expected to create 340 local jobs and provide a $40 million economic boost to Northern New Hampshire.

Pease Air National Guard Base and Portsmouth Naval Shipyard

The spending bill includes funding for the new KC-46A Pegasus aerial refueling tanker that will be housed at Pease Air National Guard base in New Hampshire. The new tankers will replace the Air Force’s current fleet of 1950’s era KC-135s, and Pease – home to the New Hampshire Air National Guard’s 157th Air Refueling Wing – is slated to be the first Air National Guard unit to receive the next generation tanker in fiscal year 2018. Shaheen has advocated for Pease to receive the tanker since 2011, and last year, announced that the Air Force had designated Pease as the first Air National Guard unit to receive the KC-46A.

The bill also includes $41 million in infrastructure upgrades to prepare the Pease Air National Guard Base for the new tankers, as well investments in further energy efficiency upgrades at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, which will reduce costs and improve performance at the shipyard.

Veterans

The spending bill also provides support for service men and women and addresses issues at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). The bill increases funding for the Beyond Yellow Ribbon Program, which connects service men and women and their families with community support, training, and other services, by $15 million.

The bill also supports job opportunities for veterans by incorporating several of Shaheen’s veteran small business priorities included in her legislation the Veterans Entrepreneurship Act. The bill includes fee waivers for veteran small business owners applying for Small Business Association (SBA) loans who are looking for loans to start or expand their small businesses. The bill also makes important investments to continue reducing the backlog of veterans’ benefits and appeals claims.

Peace Corps

The bill gives victims of rape who serve in the Peace Corps health care equity by providing them with health care coverage to terminate a pregnancy. Peace Corps volunteers will now receive the same basic health care benefits provided to other women on federal health care plans.

Heroin Abuse Intervention Funding

The bill will help local communities in New Hampshire address the growing heroin abuse crisis. It provides critical resources for communities by setting aside $7 million to strengthen law enforcement efforts in states with high incidences of heroin abuse. Shaheen has been working with local, state and federal officials as well as law enforcement and public health experts to identify ways to address the growing heroin and prescription drug problem in New Hampshire. Earlier this year, she announced Drug Free Communities (DFC) Support Program funding for New Hampshire, which will educate young people about the dangers of drug abuse to ultimately reduce youth substance use. The Senate Appropriations Committee also unanimously adopted several provisions Shaheen proposed and which were a direct result of her outreach with federal, state and local officials along with public health and treatment professionals.

Children and Families

The spending bill invests in important programs for children in New Hampshire such as Head Start, Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and the Child Care and Development Block Grant program.  It allocates $430 million for the Violence Against Women Act, which is a record level of funding.  These resources are critical to providing the support needed by the millions of women who are the victims of violence.

Wave of Actions by FairPoint Strikers Continues Friday in Manchester

FairPoint strikers converge on company’s Elm Street offices calling for good jobs, quality service, and a Fair Deal for New England

Workers escalating their campaign after negotiators from North Carolina-based FairPoint made no movement at meeting earlier this week

Manchester protest marks the third major action by FairPoint strikers in two days, following events Thursday in Montpelier and Boston

WHEN: Friday, November 21, Noon – 1:00 p.m.

WHERE: 770 Elm Street, Manchester, N.H.

Fairness at Fairpoint BannerMANCHESTER — A wave of actions by striking FairPoint workers continues Friday in Manchester. Strikers and supporters from across New England are rallying on the picket line outside FairPoint’s Elm Street offices.

The striking workers are calling on the company, which is headquartered in North Carolina, to reach a Fair Deal for New England. They say that deep and damaging cuts the company is seeking in negotiations would make it impossible to deliver quality service to customers.

“The executives back in North Carolina don’t get it, but they’ve created a crisis here in New England,” said Glenn Brackett, Business Manager of IBEW Local 2320, which represents FairPoint workers in New Hampshire. “By attacking their skilled workers, FairPoint has left our customers relying on unqualified contractors who can’t do the work.”

The Manchester protest will mark the strikers’ third major action against FairPoint in two days. On Thursday morning, a delegation of strikers and supporters protested against FairPoint’s biggest shareholder — Wall Street hedge fund Angelo, Gordon & Co. — at an investor conference in Boston. At noon, the strikers held a major rally at the Vermont state capitol in Montpelier.

Earlier this week, union representatives participated in an effort to jump-start the deadlocked talks. They attended a meeting Tuesday with the company arranged by a federal mediator. But the meeting broke up quickly after FairPoint officials refused to modify demands for severe cuts that they’ve been seeking since bargaining began this spring.

New Hampshire Gov. Maggie Hassan issued a statement after Tuesday’s meeting, saying, “I know that FairPoint workers, who stood by the company throughout its bankruptcy proceedings, have brought a constructive approach to the table and offered real concessions, and I encourage FairPoint’s leadership in North Carolina to do the same.”

Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin spoke at Thursday’s rally in Montpelier, and said he had talked to the CEO of FairPoint two days earlier. Shumlin said he had urged the CEO to return to the table with the FairPoint strikers so they could “get service back to a level that is acceptable.”

Since the strike began on October 17, FairPoint has been struggling to maintain its northern New England systems with replacement workers hired from out of state. On Monday, Vermont’s Department of Public Service reported that it has received 271 complaints from Fairpoint customers during the strike, a significant increase.

The negotiations for a new contract at FairPoint began in April, and from the outset company officials pressed to increase outsourcing, cut pay for new workers and slash benefits for all employees. The workers have offered more than $200 million in cost-saving compromises during the talks. But the company has not altered its initial demand for $700 million in deep and damaging cuts.

The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) System Council T-9 includes local unions in Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont and represents nearly 1,700 employees at FairPoint Communications. The Communications Workers of America (CWA) Local 1400 represents nearly 300 FairPoint employees in the three states. For more information, visit www.FairnessAtFairpoint.com.

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