Government Affairs Update: Fall 2022

Fall is a time of birth and renewal. It’s the time to renew old bonds, forage new ones, and begin to sing that old carol: getting to know you, getting to know all about you. For, of course, fall – or at least the time of fall when you’ll have the opportunity to read this article – will be when we all know which of our neighbors have been selected to form the new year’s legislature.

Default Budgets & How They Work

One of the most difficult to understand areas of municipal finance is the calculation of default budgets. The first complication is, of course, that only some towns need to calculate a default budget. Those are SB2 towns (which are officially known as “official ballot towns”). The reason that SB2 towns need to calculate a “default budget” is because the town meeting decides whether to adopt the town officials recommended budget via a ballot vote, rather than by debate at town meeting. If the majority of town voters say “no,” the town still needs money to operate.

Executive Director Message

Are you ready?  It’s time to ramp up for another legislative session!

In September, the initial LSRs (Legislative Service Requests) came out, and by the time you are reading this, more will be available. LSRs are the like the idea for a bill, and while not all of them will actually become official bills for the 2023 session, many will. The title of each LSR gives us a glimpse into what kind of bill it may become.

Executive Director Message

In the January/February issue of Town & City, I encouraged members to get involved in NHMA’s upcoming legislative policy process. It’s not just that your voice is the most crucial part of NHMA’s advocacy, or that it’s important NHMA’s policies reflect the perspectives of a wide cross-section of our membership, or even that it’s a membership benefit that we want our members to take advantage of—although those are all good reasons.

2022 Legislative Preview: Time to Raise Your Hometown Voices

State House Report

And so, we begin the second year of the two-year legislative term. It’s early yet but having now digested the bill titles that were released in the fall, it’s fair to say that it’s shaping up to be a session very similar to last year. Once again, we can expect to be on the defensive throughout the 2022 term. There are a few bills of particular note on that front:

City Mayors Receive Russ Marcoux Award

2021 Muni Award

The 2021 Russ Marcoux Municipal Advocate of the year award was presented at NHMA’s annual membership meeting, held on November 17 in conjunction with the NHMA Annual Conference in Manchester.

Executive Director Message

Last November, NHMA put on its first ever virtual Annual Conference, which was a great success. Although we had hoped 2021 would allow us to return to our normal two day, in person conference, we determined that the safest decision was to hold a hybrid event—with something for everyone! The first day, Wednesday, November 17, will take place at the Doubletree in Manchester, for all of you who are ready to network and connect again in person. The core educational sessions on Wednesday will also be live streamed, so attendees who prefer to attend virtually can do so.

Don MacIsaac Presented NHMA's 2013 Russ Marcoux Municipal Advocate of the Year Award

At its annual conference in November, NHMA recognized Don MacIsaac, a Selectman in Jaffrey, with its 2013 Russ Marcoux Municipal Advocate of the Year award.

Legislative Wrap-Up

New Hampshire Town and City went to press, the House and Senate were planning to return on June 27 to take care of their last major piece of unfinished business—considering overrides of any vetoes issued by the Governor.

Lend Your Voice to Support Municipal Issues

We recognize you are a very busy person. With work, family and other commitments, who has time for legislative advocacy, right? Recognizing time as a formidable challenge, the New Hampshire Municipal Association (NHMA) has developed the 15 Minute Advocate Program to fit into the busy lives of our members. The goal is to provide information that members can quickly read, consider and take action on in 15 minutes or less.