Legislative Advocacy

Members of the NHMA Government Affairs staff follow several hundred bills of interest to municipalities during each legislative session. They draft legislation to carry out NHMA’s legislative policies, monitor legislative hearings, testify on bills when appropriate, and work individually with legislators and local officials throughout the process. The staff also follows numerous study committees, commissions, boards, and state administrative agencies, commenting on and assisting in the development of proposed agency rules. On occasion, staff members also work with New Hampshire’s U.S. congressional delegation on federal legislation affecting municipalities.

Every Friday during the legislative session, the Government Affairs staff publishes the Legislative Bulletin, which notifies local officials of upcoming hearings, votes on important issues, and details of legislative activity during the past week, along with methods of contacting legislators on bills of municipal importance. Contact the Government Affairs department to add your name to our Legislative Bulletin distribution list.

Assisting Local Officials with Advocacy Initiatives

Although members of the Government Affairs staff testify and work with legislators on many bills, it is always more compelling when local officials participate directly in the advocacy process. Hearing from local officials reminds legislators that the staff is representing the interests of "real people." This is especially true when legislators hear from officials in their own districts. There is also a continuing need for local officials to serve with legislators and state agency representatives on various state policy boards and commissions.

NHMA strongly encourages local officials to contact their legislators and state regulators on matters of importance to their municipalities, and testify before them when possible. Staff members are available to facilitate this process.

The NHMA publication A Guide to Legislative Advocacy for Local Officials provides a thorough look at the legislative process and how you can participate. A limited number of print publications are available; members may contact NHMA staff to request a copy while supplies last.