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Suddenly Sen Ayotte Supports Working Pregnant Women But What About All Working Moms?

It is official Governor Maggie Hassan announced she is challenging Senator Kelly Ayotte for her seat in the US Senate. Let the games begin!

Senator Ayotte is coming out swinging with her first online ad entitled “Workplace Fairness,” that focuses on her new legislative proposal, co-sponsored by Senator Shaheen, which would help to end workplace discrimination for pregnant women.

I don’t say this often but I actually agree with Sen. Ayotte that something needs to be done to protect pregnant workers from workplace discrimination and provide pregnant women alternative work during their pregnancy, however I have been pushing for this type of legislation for years now.

Senators Shaheen and Ayotte introduced this legislative in June of this year after the Supreme Court ruled that UPS discriminated against Peggy Young by not offering her light duty work after her doctor instructed her not to lift heavy things due to her pregnancy.

Here is the kicker, this new legislation is actually old legislation submitted in a new legislative term. The bill, the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act, was actually submitted in September of 2012 and again in May of 2013.

In her new video, Sen Ayotte fails to mention that she refused to support the very same bill not once but twice when it was previously introduced since Ayotte has been in Washington.

Why the change of heart? What is different about this bill now?

It is not so much that the bill has changed it is that Sen. Ayotte is facing a strong progressive candidate in Maggie Hassan.

Suddenly as the campaign ramps up Sen. Ayotte supports the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act, but what happens after that expectant mother delivers her baby?

Sen Ayotte has repeatedly said that paid sick leave is “an issue that should be addressed by employers rather than mandated by the government.”

What is the difference between supporting pregnant women in the workplace and supporting parents in the workplace? If you support Pregnancy Fairness why not paid sick leave.

Ayotte did introduce her own paid leave bill with Mitch McConnell earlier this year, but her bill was nothing but an election year stunt that would force workers to choose between overtime pay and leave time.

Let us not forget that Sen. Ayotte has a terrible record supporting women and women’s health.

  • Ayotte opposes the paycheck fairness act
  • Ayotte supports repealing the Affordable Care Act which made it law that new mothers have the right to pump breast milk at work in a safe place, and that employers cannot fire or discriminate against nursing moms.
  • Ayotte supports the misguided Hobby Lobby decision.
  • Ayotte has voted multiple times to allow employers to deny women access to contraception.
  • Ayotte introduced a sham birth control bill that would increase costs for women and is opposed by the American Congress of OB-GYNs.
  • Ayotte has voted repeatedly to defund Planned Parenthood and other family planning centers, which provide critical health services including breast exams.

I don’t have to tell you – but I am going to anyway – Senator Ayotte’s new challenger, Governor Hassan, has been a staunch supporter of working women and women’s health.

Hassan signed into law a Paycheck Fairness bill, expanded Medicaid to give more Granite Staters access to quality healthcare, and in her first term worked to restore the devastating cuts to Planned Parenthood.

Gov. Hassan continues to fight the Republican led Executive Council’s cuts to Planned Parenthood in New Hampshire.

“The council’s vote to defund Planned Parenthood will hurt the health and economic well-being of thousands of Granite Staters. Moving forward, I will continue to fight to ensure that women and families have access to the important health services that are essential to the economic security and vitality of our families,” said Hassan.

Despite what Sen. Ayotte is saying in her poll-tested advertising, she is not the champion for women she claims to be. She is the same old partisan hack who has fueled the continued gridlock in Washington.

Maggie Hassan Announces Her Run For US Senate Against Kelly Ayotte

Maggie Hassan Pledges to Take Her Bipartisan Approach, Common Sense, and Commitment to Problem-Solving to the U.S. Senate

Concord – Pledging to take her bipartisan approach, common sense, and commitment to problem-solving and results to the Senate, Governor Maggie Hassan today announced her candidacy to represent New Hampshire in the United States Senate.

Click here for Maggie’s full video message to Granite Staters.

“In order to continue working to realize our state’s full potential we need a response from Washington that meets the progress we’re making here at home,” said Governor Maggie Hassan. “Washington has given in to powerful special interests and lobbyists who rig the system for themselves and against the middle-class, and I believe we can do better for New Hampshire families.”

As Governor, Maggie Hassan has worked to bring people together to build a stronger, more innovative New Hampshire where education and small businesses drive job creation – promoting a business-friendly environment that has New Hampshire’s unemployment rate at the lowest level since 2008.

A determined fighter for New Hampshire families, Maggie believes we need a response from Washington that meets the progress we’re making here in the Granite State.

“Washington has lost its way on too many of the priorities that matter to New Hampshire. You can count on me to take my bipartisan approach, common sense, and commitment to problem-solving to the Senate to get results for New Hampshire families,” added Hassan.

Executive Councilor Chris Sununu Announces His Campaign For Governor

Yesterday it was announced that Executive Councilor Chris Sununu is officially running for Governor of NH.  Sununu told the Concord Monitor:

“As governor, I will work to re-establish an economic climate that will provide dependable, high-paying jobs, and develop pro-growth initiatives to stop the loss of skilled workers and young people to other states,” he said in a statement.

Sununu called for education reform, providing more money for charter schools, performance-based pay for teachers and reinstating school building aid. He also said he would “veto a sales or income tax.”

Many working families and especially women in the Granite State are very familiar with Councilor Sununu.  He recently voted to defund Planned Parenthood leaving thousands of women without access to healthcare.  He has also opposed expanding Medicaid and blocking the expansion of rail service to New Hampshire.

“New Hampshire women should not be forced to seek important health services from an organization that is immersed in scandal and currently being investigated by Congress,” Sununu wrote in a letter to Health and Human Services Commissioner Nick Toumpas. “They deserve more choices and greater access to health care.”

Executive Councilor Colin Van Ostern responded to the Councilor Sununu’s announcement:

“Executive Councilor Chris Sununu’s criticisms today of our state, his hits on Governor Hassan, and his pledge to return the state to what it was like in his youth are simply not the path forward to a brighter future for New Hampshire. In the two and a half years I have served next to Chris on the state Executive Council, he has voted to restrict access to basic health care for thousands of New Hampshire women, against key renewable energy projects, against commuter rail to Boston, and against the bipartisan, business-endorsed law that expanded health care to tens of thousands. A brighter future for our state needs leaders who look forward — as Governor Hassan does — not backwards into the past.”

The New Hampshire Republican Party told the Concord Monitor:

“Republicans are pleased that an extremely formidable candidate like Chris Sununu is already declaring his candidacy while qualified candidates like Rep. Frank Edelblut are also considering running,” Chairwoman Jennifer Horn said in a statement. “We expect a positive and productive primary that will produce a strong nominee who will take back the corner office in 2016.”

The New Hampshire Democratic Party also released a statement after the announcement:

“Chris Sununu voted to restrict access to birth control and cancer screenings for thousands of women who rely on local Planned Parenthood health centers and opposed the successful bipartisan expansion of health care to over 41,000 New Hampshire citizens. He’s stood in the way of numerous renewable energy projects that would cut energy costs and create jobs and has done everything he can to stop commuter rail from Boston to central New Hampshire and the jobs that will come with it. He also supported the fiscally irresponsible GOP budget that would create a $90 million hole in our state’s budget.”

“New Hampshire can’t afford another Sununu’s crusade to take us backwards, undermine our economic progress, and hurt women and families – and luckily, after Republicans have lost six straight campaigns for Governor in this state, that’s going to happen again if his father’s hand-picked candidate makes it to next fall.”

It is very early in the campaign so it is still unknown who will be running for Governor.  There are still questions as to whether NH’s current Governor, Maggie Hassan, will run for a third term or whether she will run against Senator Ayotte for U.S. Senate.

Fact-Checking Walt Havenstein

walt havensteinFACT CHECK: New Hampshire ALREADY has one of the BEST “Business Tax Climates” in the Nation

Fact: Despite Walt Havenstein’s misleading claims, the very study his campaign has cited – the Tax Foundation’s State Business Tax Climate Index – shows that New Hampshire’s business tax climate ranks 7th best in the country (and number one in New England).

The Council on State Taxation (COST) also tallied “all of the taxes paid by businesses in a given state, not just corporate income taxes, but property, sales, and personal income taxes as well” and found “that figure was 4.2 percent in FY 2012, markedly lower than the national average of 4.8 percent and less than 38 other states.” [NHFPI, 8/6/14]

FACT CHECK: So-Called “Right to Work”

Fact: Despite Havenstein’s claims, so-called “right to work” really means “right to work for less.”

The Economic Policy Institute’s report, “’Right-to-Work’ Wrong for New Hampshire,” explains that “Contrary to what RTW backers have claimed, the scientific analysis of right-to-work laws shows that they lower wages and benefits for both union and nonunion workers alike without exhibiting any positive impact on job growth.”

(Read NHLN coverage of Right to Work (for Less) here and here.)

FACT CHECK: Havenstein’s Misleading and Dishonest Budget Attacks

Fact: Governor Hassan has repeatedly pledged that she would veto an income or sales tax if one were to reach her desk.

Walt Havenstein’s false attack ignores that agencies are required by law “to submit both a maintenance budget that includes the cost of existing services going forward and a budget that incorporates new costs such as additional personnel or new legislatively mandated programs or technology.” [Union Leader, 10/14/14]

Havenstein’s misleading attack also ignores that Governor Hassan told state agencies their budget requests are non-starters, and already instructed agencies to submit lower proposals. [Union Leader, 8/7/14]

FACT CHECK: Havenstein’s Highway Fund Plan Cuts Troopers, Ignores Constitution

Fact: Walt Havenstein’s plan to cut the Department of Safety’s funding would take troopers off the road and make New Hampshire’s highways less safe.

The New Hampshire Constitution says that the highway funds shall be used for “the construction, reconstruction and maintenance of public highways within this state, including the supervision of traffic thereon.”  [NH Constitution, Part Second, Article 6-a]  The reference to the “supervision of traffic” allows highway funds to be given to the Department of Safety to fund state troopers.

In her bipartisan budget, Governor Hassan worked to maintain New Hampshire’s status as one of the safest states in the nation by putting more troopers on the road. By cutting the Department of Safety’s highway funding, Havenstein would reverse this effort and pull troopers off New Hampshire’s highways.

FACT CHECK: Havenstein’s Failed Record as CEO of SAIC

Fact: Failed CEO Walt Havenstein drove SAIC into the ground, the company lost millions, shed thousands of jobs, and saw its stock value nose-dive.

Despite Havenstein’s attempts to duck responsibility for the company’s performance during his disastrous tenure, the Nashua Telegraph pointed out that, “there’s little to dispute the company’s stock and job loss performance.”

Speaking of the strategy Havenstein put in place at SAIC to push for big government contracts, the Washington Post added, “The company struggled under the strategy, watching its profit and revenue decline.”

FACT CHECK: Over a Year Into Havenstein’s Tenure as CEO, SAIC Gave a 5% Raise to Consultants at Heart of Massive CityTime Fraud Scandal

Fact: During Walt Havenstein’s time as CEO of SAIC, the U.S. Department of Justice discovered that his company was involved in a massive, $500 million fraud scheme against taxpayers.

Despite Havenstein’s claims that he took action and held people accountable, the New York Daily News reported that, “In early December 2010, only weeks before federal agents launched the first arrests in the scandal, the city’s Office of Payroll Administration permitted SAIC to give 5% across-the-board pay increases to all consultants supplied by Technodyne.” [NY Daily News, 11/21/13]

The employees and owners of the TechnoDyne consulting firm were at the heart of the massive CityTime fraud scheme. Before the U.S. Department of Justice discovered the scheme, SAIC employees funneled $400 million in taxpayer dollars to TechnoDyne. [US DOJ Press Release, 6/20/11]

The across-the-board pay increase for all TechnoDyne consultants came over a year after Havenstein became CEO of SAIC on September 21, 2009. At the time of the raise, the CityTime project was already hundreds of millions of dollars over budget. [NY Times, 12/15/10]

See here for public documents showing that SAIC gave a five-percent raise to the TechnoDyne consultants on December 9, 2010, just six days before the U.S. Department of Justice’s first round of arrests in the case.


Failed CEO Walt Havenstein Falsely Claims Hobby Lobby ‘Would Never Apply’ in New Hampshire

In Temple Adath Yeshurun Debate, Havenstein Demonstrates His Cluelessness on New Hampshire State Law, the Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby Decision, and Workers’ Rights

MANCHESTER—Failed CEO Walt Havenstein doubled down on his support for the Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby decision that allows an employer to deny a woman health insurance that covers contraception. Havenstein also demonstrated his cluelessness on New Hampshire state law by falsely claiming the Hobby Lobby decision would “never apply to begin with” in New Hampshire.

“Walt Havenstein is either intentionally misleading voters, or he simply doesn’t understand New Hampshire’s laws,” said State Representative Candace Bouchard, who chairs the House Reproductive Rights Caucus. “Contrary to Havenstein’s false statements, the anti-choice Hobby Lobby decision does apply in New Hampshire and it means that certain employers here can deny women contraception coverage.”

At the Temple Adath Yeshurun debate, Havenstein reiterated his support for the Hobby Lobby decision. Adding, “In New Hampshire, because of our laws, [the Hobby Lobby decision] would never apply to begin with.” Havenstein’s Communications Director Henry Goodwin stated on Twitter that “No one would lose access” to contraception in New Hampshire under Hobby Lobby because the state’s “insurance mandates mean it can’t happen.”

Both Havenstein’s and Goodwin’s comments inaccurately describe New Hampshire’s laws, the Hobby Lobby decision, and the decision’s impact on New Hampshire women. The state mandate requiring health insurers to provide contraception coverage excludes employers that self-insure. The Hobby Lobby decision allows these self-insured New Hampshire employers to deny employees contraception coverage. Many large companies choose to self-insure, including Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc., which has a location in Manchester and no longer has to provide contraception coverage to its employees there under the Supreme Court’s decision.

“Not only did Havenstein double down on his support for the misguided Hobby Lobby decision, but he’s also said that the radical anti-woman NHGOP platform – which would outlaw some types of contraception and in vetro fertilization – would be his ‘guideline’ for decision-making. If one thing is clear, it’s that Walt Havenstein can’t be trusted on women’s health care,” added Representative Bouchard.

Click here for the full video of Havenstein’s false claims about the Hobby Lobby decision.


Havenstein: “I can use that platform as the guideline for me for making decisions.”

“’I can use that platform as the guideline for me for making decisions.’ The platform is not binding, Havenstein added, but it forms as a “guideline” for decision-making. As the Republican gubernatorial nominee, Havenstein also said he has an ‘obligation’ to support the party toward victory.” [Concord Monitor, October 12, 2014]

New Hampshire GOP Adopts Fetal ‘Personhood’ Into Platform

“Fetal personhood measures, which have been defeated in several states, would grant legal rights to zygotes from the moment of fertilization. The measures are extremely controversial because they would criminalize abortion without exceptions and could ban some forms of contraception and in vitro fertilization.” [Huffington Post, September 22, 2014]

Havenstein Supports Limiting Access to “Life-Saving Aspect of Women’s Health Care”

“Contraceptive services are a fundamental and at times life-saving aspect of women’s health care. By ruling the way it did, the Supreme Court has opened the door for religion and politics to control access to those services. Despite their protestations to the contrary, that is exactly what Brown and Havenstein are championing.” [Concord Monitor Editorial, 7/2/14]

Havenstein Praises Supreme Court’s Decision on the Massachusetts Buffer Zone Law

“Havenstein praised the court’s decision and condemned the New Hampshire law Gov. Maggie Hassan signed that takes effect on July 10.” [Nashua Telegraph, 6/30/14]

Havenstein Unwilling To Comment On Anti-Choice Bills Before The Legislature

The Union Leader also reported that Walt Havenstein’s campaign would not answer a series of questions regarding Havenstein’s stance on various anti-choice bills before the legislature. [Union Leader, 4/21/14]

Havenstein Signed the Koch Brothers’ Pledge to Block Affordable Care Act and Medicaid Expansion

Havenstein signed the Koch Brothers-backed Americans for Prosperity New Hampshire pledge, which commits that he’d work to repeal Medicaid expansion and block measures that help women access affordable health services. [WMUR, 7/30/14]

Governor Hassas Praises Labor At NH AFL-CIO Labor Day Breakfast


Governor Hassan as well as many others took time out of their busy schedules to stop and honor Labor at the New Hampshire AFL-CIO’s annual Labor Day Breakfast.

Labor Day is the one day a year when the entire nation stops to look back and praise the achievements of organized labor throughout history.  Some, like Governor Hassan, respect and honor the hard work that union members do every day.

“You all make up the highly skilled workforce that makes up the backbone of our economy,” Hassan said.

Unions have always fought for better pay and better working conditions, and that leads to better pay and better working conditions for all Granite Staters.

I am proud to stand before you as your Governor and say that, with your support, we have been able to come together, and we have begun to reverse the devastating cuts and misguided policies of the last legislature,” said Hassan.

Governor Hassan has also shown she supports working families by pushing for, and signing, legislation like “Paycheck Fairness,” that work to reduce the income inequality between men and women.  She also worked to freeze in-state tuition at the University of New Hampshire schools.  She proudly announced that next year the Community College System of NH would actually lower tuition by 5%.

There was one piece of legislation that Governor Hassan was eager to see, that never made it to her desk, and that was an increase in the NH Minimum Wage.  The House passed a modest increase over two years, and Governor Hassan was very supportive of that legislation. However, when the bill got to the Senate, it was killed by a party line vote.  The Republican’s in the Senate, killed that bill and every Granite Stater should know it.

We need to ensure that this November we elect leaders, like Governor Hassan, who will stand up for working families, who will fight for a minimum wage increase, who will fight to keep expanding our healthcare options, and fight against the corporate greed that is infecting our legislature.  We need to ensure that we elect leaders who will oppose Right To Work (for less) in all its forms.

Below is the unedited address given by Governor Hassan at the NH AFL-CIO Labor Day Breakfast.

Governor Hassan Signs Bill Creating “Pathway to Work” Program

SB 143 Creates Innovative, No-Cost Program Designed to Help Unemployed Workers Start Their Own Businesses

Maggie HassanCONCORD – Continuing her efforts to create jobs and strengthen New Hampshire’s economy, Governor Maggie Hassan signed today SB 143, which creates a “Pathway to Work” program designed to encourage and support efforts of unemployed workers to create their own jobs by starting their own small businesses.

“With this new law, we are able to expand the successful New Hampshire Working program by creating an innovative, no-cost program designed to encourage and enable unemployed workers to create their own jobs and perhaps provide jobs for others by starting their own small businesses,” Governor Hassan said. New Hampshire will now provide the pathway for unemployed participants to work with our state’s Small Business Development Center to engage in entrepreneurial training, business counseling and technical assistance. This will allow workers who are likely to exhaust their benefits to have access to the resources and training they need to establish a business and become self-employed.”

“I want to thank Senator Sylvia Larsen and her many co-sponsors for bringing this important piece of legislation forward. This new law will help Granite Staters create good jobs and build a more innovative economic future,” Governor Hassan said.

During her time in the state Senate, Governor Hassan sponsored a similar measure and worked with Senator Larsen to pass legislation creating the New Hampshire Working Program, a successful three-part jobs initiative that was enacted in 2010 to assist workers to Stay at Work, Return to Work and Get Ready to Work. Senate Bill 143 aims to build on that success by adding a fourth component, the “Pathway to Work.”

To participate in the “Pathway to Work” program, an unemployed worker must be: eligible to receive regular unemployment compensation; permanently laid off from his or her previous job; identified as likely to exhaust regular unemployment compensation; and a participant in activities such as entrepreneurial training, business counseling and technical assistance while engaged on a full-time basis in activities relating to the establishment of a business and becoming self-employed.

Two Different Views On The Northern Pass

White MountainsToday it was announced that there is a new proposed route to the controversal Northern Pass project.

“The new proposal includes an improved route, partially underground, through New Hampshire’s North Country, and was developed in response to concerns about potential visual impacts and property rights. “Over the past two years, we’ve met with landowners, citizens, key stakeholders, and public officials from across New Hampshire in an effort to better understand their concerns with our original proposal,” said Gary Long, president and COO of Public Service of New Hampshire (PSNH), a subsidiary of the project’s parent company, Northeast Utilities. “We have worked hard to develop a new proposal that is better for New Hampshire and responsive to feedback we’ve received.”

After the announcement, Joseph Casey, a Representative of the IBEW and President of the New Hampshire Building Trades Council released the following statement:

“The announcement today by the Northern Pass of a new route represents a practical, feasible compromise to the concerns raised about the initial project design, and is an important step forward for the working families of New Hampshire.

The Northern Pass project will be the largest green jobs project in New Hampshire history creating more than 1,200 NH jobs per year during the three-year construction phase.  At a time when many of our New Hampshire members must travel thousands of miles away for work opportunities and spend months away from their families to simply earn a living, this project will bring needed jobs and opportunity close to home.

Last week, five of the six New England states jointly recognized the critical need for additional Canadian hydropower to ensure our region’s future economic success, and this project answers that call by providing decades of clean, low-cost power to New Hampshire and New England.

As a critical stakeholder in this project, the New Hampshire members of the IBEW applaud the work and compromise offered by Northern Pass in this proposal.  We look forward to this project moving forward, and for the state process of review and permitting to get underway.”

Governor Hassan also release this statement.  She appears to be open to the new idea yet guarded about the implications to the landscape of the state.  She is still pushing for all the lines to be buried.

“It is encouraging to see that Northern Pass officials listened to people across New Hampshire and are not proposing to violate the Connecticut Lakes Headwaters easement. But it is clear that many questions remain regarding the impacts that the proposed project could have on the White Mountain National Forest, as well as on New Hampshire’s economy, environment, natural resources, communities and people. 

“As opposed to the first Northern Pass proposal, the newly proposed route appropriately buries transmission lines in some areas. However, from an initial review of the proposal I continue to believe that project officials must more fully explore options for burying more of the lines. I strongly encourage Northern Pass officials to continue to listen to the concerns of affected communities and the people of New Hampshire.

“Protecting the beautiful natural resources and scenic views of the North Country is integral to maintaining New Hampshire’s high quality of life and for keeping our tourism-driven economy strong. With the new proposal released, I encourage the federal government to thoroughly evaluate the plan, and I will work to ensure that, in accordance with the law, New Hampshire undertakes a rigorous review process that provides significant opportunities for public voices to be fully heard.”

You can read all about the new proposed route from the Northern Pass website.

Bipartisan State Budget Agreement Reached

Governor Maggie Hassan today applauded the bipartisan budget agreement reached by House and Senate negotiators.[mantra-pullquote align=”right” textalign=”left” width=”33%”]

Senate Democratic Leader Sylvia Larsen released the following comments on the House and Senate negotiators reaching an agreement on a bipartisan balanced state budget:
“Senate Democrats have worked to protect many of the good initiatives of this budget — restoring education funding, Children in Need of Services, and mental health services, and creating a clear path toward accepting $2.5 billion in federal funds to extend Medicaid coverage to 58,000 people in our state.
There are also some things that Senate Democrats could not reverse that we will continue to work on next session. At the end of the day, this is a compromise, and the very fact that we can reach one is a good thing. It shows that together with the leadership of Governor Hassan, in New Hampshire we can still work together, find common ground, and make progress on important issues.[/mantra-pullquote]

“This bipartisan, fiscally responsible balanced budget agreement represents true and meaningful progress on the priorities that matter to the people of New Hampshire and that are critical for creating good jobs and building a more innovative economic future,” Governor Hassan said.

“By restoring investments in priorities such as higher education, mental health, economic development, public safety and more, this bipartisan agreement will keep our state moving forward by encouraging innovation and maintaining the health and well-being of our families and communities.”

The budget significantly restores funding for the University and Community College systems to allow them to freeze tuition, returns a scholarship fund for New Hampshire students, and invests in other economic development activities such as tourism and trade promotion and technical assistance for businesses. It will allow the state to move forward with implementing its 10-year mental health plan, funds the waitlist for people with developmental disabilities, restores the Children in Need of Services (CHINS) program, improves public safety by adding additional state troopers, and increases aid to cities and towns.

The bipartisan budget also establishes a study commission that will report back on Medicaid expansion by October 15th.

“While I believe we could move forward now with accepting the $2.5 billion in federal funds for Medicaid expansion, I respect the Senate’s desire to study a New Hampshire-specific model and appreciate its willingness to do so in a timely way,” Governor Hassan said. “I am confident that once members of the Legislature see the results of the study, they will want to move forward as quickly as possible through a special session. Because, as both Democratic and Republican Governors across the country have found, Medicaid expansion is absolutely critical to the health and financial well-being of our citizens, and every day that New Hampshire delays after January 1st will cost us $1 million a day in federal funds.”

Governor Hassan also praised the work of lawmakers on the budget.

“Like all budgets, this agreement required difficult choices and compromises. But the bipartisan balanced budget agreement clearly demonstrates that the New Hampshire traditions of hard-work, collaboration, and commonsense problem-solving have returned to Concord. Both the House and Senate repeatedly showed a willingness to rise above ideology and listen to the people they represent in order to reach constructive compromises.

“I want to thank President Bragdon, Speaker Norelli, Senator Morse, Representative Wallner, and all of the budget negotiators from both chambers, as well as the staff of the Legislature, state agencies, and my office, for their tireless work that led to this bipartisan agreement.

“With this fiscally responsible balanced budget, the people of the Granite State can feel confident that their voices have been heard loud and clear. I encourage all members of both the House and Senate to send this budget to my desk for my signature so we can lay the foundation for a stronger, more innovative New Hampshire.”

Governor Hassan to Nominate Attorney James Craig as Commissioner of Labor

Former House Minority Leader to Lead Efforts to Protect Workforce, Ensure Level Playing Field for Businesses

CONCORD – In order to protect New Hampshire’s workers and ensure that all Granite State businesses have a fair opportunity to succeed and create jobs, Governor Maggie Hassan announced today that she will nominate former House Minority Leader James W. Craig to serve as Commissioner of the Department of Labor.

“To seize the opportunity of the innovation economy, we must ensure that the rights of New Hampshire’s workers are fully protected and that our businesses have a level playing field to grow and thrive,” Governor Hassan said. “Jim Craig has a long record of standing up for workers, and an ability to listen to and work with the business community to make progress. He has a deep understanding of the legal and policy issues that affect both our workforce and business community, which will make him an excellent Commissioner of Labor and I thank him for agreeing to once again serve the people of New Hampshire.”

Craig, of Manchester, is a partner at the law firm of Craig, Deachman & Amann, PLLC, and has practiced law in New Hampshire for 30 years with a variety of experience in issues critical to the state’s workforce and business community. He served in the New Hampshire House of Representatives for five terms, including as Minority Leader from 2004-2006.

“Protecting workers and ensuring that all New Hampshire businesses are playing by the same rules are critical for growing the economy and strengthening communities, and I thank Governor Hassan for nominating me to undertake this important responsibility and opportunity,” Craig said.

Craig, who has also served as president of the Manchester Bar Association, received his BA from Keene State College, his MA from the University of Southern California, and his JD from the University of New Hampshire School of Law (formerly known as Franklin Pierce Law Center) in 1983.

Craig’s nomination is subject to confirmation by the Executive Council. Governor Hassan will formally nominate Craig to the Council at Wednesday’s meeting.


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