Update on Legislative Policy Conference
The information contained in this article is not intended as legal advice and may no longer be accurate due to changes in the law. Consult NHMA's legal services or your municipal attorney.
NHMA’s legislative policy process—the process by which our members adopt legislative positions for the government affairs staff to advocate—occurs every two years. This year’s process, like almost everything else in 2020, has been a challenge—but it has gone forward, and it will conclude with the Legislative Policy Conference on October 2.
Proposed legislative policies are initially reviewed by three policy committees of volunteer municipal officials (see below). The organizational meeting of those committees this year was originally scheduled for April 3. When the governor declared a state of emergency on March 13, followed by a prohibition on large gatherings on March 16, it became apparent that something would need to be done differently.
At that time the gravity of the situation was still sinking in. The prohibition on large gatherings was scheduled to expire on April 6—perhaps, we thought, the committees could meet a week or two later.
That thought turned out to be quaintly naïve. With the pandemic worsening and the prohibition on gatherings extended, the organizational meeting was pushed back to May 29 and was held using Microsoft Teams, with all of the approximately 40 committee members and six NHMA staff members participating remotely. Over the next month, the three committees met separately several times each, always remotely. Although less satisfactory than in-person meetings, the process was reasonably smooth.
The committees completed their work in late June, and legislative policy recommendations for 2021-2022 were e-mailed to each municipality’s governing body on July 8. (If your municipality did not receive them, please notify us immediately at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call us at 603-224-7447 or 800-852-3358.)
We strongly encourage each municipality’s governing body to review the legislative policy recommendations and determine a position on each recommendation. These positions should not be sent to NHMA. Rather, they should be communicated to the person who will serve as the municipality’s delegate to the NHMA legislative policy conference. Otherwise, the delegate is free to vote as he or she sees fit on all policy recommendations.
The Legislative Policy Conference will take place at 9:00 am on Friday, October 2 at the Holiday Inn (172 North Main Street) in Concord. Information about the conference has been sent to each municipality. Again, if you did not receive it—or if you did, but you still have questions about the conference—please contact us.
We hope to see you at the upcoming policy conference.
Thank you to all the following members of the three legislative policy committees which convened virtually this spring and summer to bring forth these legislative recommendations. As the saying goes, we truly could not do this without your participation and support. Thank you!