best practices

HR REPORT: DiChiara v. Town of Salem: Federal Court Re-Affirms Absolute Immunity from Defamation Claims

By decision dated July 12, 2023, the New Hampshire Federal District Court has re-affirmed that a person may not be sued for defamation if they bring concerns regarding potential employee criminal conduct to the attention of prosecuting authorities.

Sealed Meeting Minutes Procedure Changes (HB 321)

meeting minutes

Pursuant to RSA 91-A:3, III, minutes of non-public sessions “may be withheld” (commonly called “sealed”) “until, in the opinion of a majority of members, the [reason for withholding the minutes] no longer apply.” The question that naturally arises out of statutory provision is what obligation the public body is under to evaluate whether the reason for withholding the minutes continues to exist.

2023 Local Officials Hybrid Workshop (June 29)

NHMA is holding this FREE virtual workshop designed specifically for newly-elected (or appointed) as well as experienced municipal officials and employees of member municipalities.

Presented by NHMA's Legal Services attorneys, this complimentary virtual workshop provides municipal officials with the tools and information to effectively serve your communities.  Topics will include Governance & Select Board Authority, Right-to-Know Law – Records, Remedies and Meetings, Conflicts of Interest, Budgeting Essentials, and Land Use 101.

NHMA Launches FREE Financial Policies Certificate Program

NHDES REMINDER: Public Pools & Spas Must be Registered with State

The New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services is reminding owners and operators of public bathing facilities (PBFs), including cities and towns, they are required by New Hampshire law to register all existing and new public pools or spas with the state, conduct an annual fee-based self-certification of each existing facility and certify that the PBF is operated under the supervision of a certified pool operator.

Multi-Factor Authentication for Government Organizations

In today's digital age, government organizations are facing unprecedented security threats.  The sensitive information they handle, such as personal data of citizens, ongoing investigations, financial records, and other personal data is highly valuable to hackers and cybercriminals.  Therefore, it is crucial for government organizations to implement robust security measures to protect their systems and applications from unauthorized access and data breaches.

NHARPC Corner: Household Hazardous Waste Management

Regional planning commissions play a major role in organizing and carrying out household hazardous waste collections. Many events occur throughout the year around the state. Two of the most active regional planning commissions in carrying out hazardous household hazardous waste collections are Lakes Region Planning Commission and Upper Valley Lake Sunapee Regional Planning Commission.  The primary benefits to RPC membership communities are reduced cost, protection against illegal dumping, protected water resources along with the health and safety of the community.

Debunking the Top Ten Tax Deed Myths

Perhaps no other area of municipal law contains more popular misconceptions than tax deeded real estate. Considering the complex legal requirements surrounding the tax deeding process, recent changes to tax deed
law, and the plethora of ways to sell tax deeded property, it is no wonder there is so much confusion surrounding this important topic.

In this article, we debunk the ten most frequent myths we’ve encountered about tax deeded properties over the decades we’ve represented New Hampshire municipalities as attorneys and auctioneers.

First Amendment “Audits”: What Are They and How Do You Handle One?

Recently, towns across New Hampshire (and the country) have begun experiencing a new, unsettling type of encounter with members of the public that has increasingly caused confusion, irritation, and even court battles and the resulting payment of money damages. This interaction is called the “First Amendment audit.” First Amendment audits are an American social and political movement that usually involves filming from a public space.

The Art of Welfare Administration Workshop

Program Agenda

9:00 A.M. - Registration

9:30 A.M. - The Art of Welfare
This session provides a basic overview of New Hampshire law governing local welfare administration, including why guidelines are important and how assistance is provided. This session will also address fair hearings, suspension of assistance, and more.
Jonathan Cowal, Municipal Services Counsel, NH Municipal Association
Stephen Buckley, Legal Services Counsel, NH Municipal Association

11:00 A.M. - BREAK