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Republican Legislation to Level the Playing Field for Families Seeking an IEP

CONCORD – Education Committee Vice-Chairman Glenn Cordelli (R-Tuftonboro), the prime sponsor of HB581, relative to the burden of proof in special education hearings and establishing

a committee to study special education IEP and dispute resolution processes released the following statement after Governor Chris Sununu signed this legislation into law:
“I want to thank Governor Sununu for signing this important legislation and all of my colleagues in the House and Senate for helping to make this bill a reality. Every student deserves access to a quality education that best suits their needs, and it is incumbent upon us to ensure that children with disabilities have that same opportunity,” said Cordelli. “HB581 levels the playing field for families challenging their child’s proposed IEP service plan from the school district. Prior to this legislation, parents attempting to ensure their child’s needs were met had to spend thousands of dollars to challenge a plan without the significant resources afforded to the school district. This bill places the burden of proof on the district and promotes fairness for New Hampshire’s families.”

Doucette: A tale from Democrats, NH deserve better

WHAT SHOULD be a time to celebrate the most fiscally conservative budget to ever pass through the New Hampshire House, I find myself disappointed to have to call out misleading if not blatant lies put out by House Democrats. It is no surprise that my Democratic counterparts tried to justify their policy failures by taking credit for things that they had no part in. To lead constituents on by falsely stating they advocated for small business, New Hampshire families and consumers in their lackluster budget is disheartening. The voters deserve better and they deserve to know exactly what their representatives have been up to this past legislative session.

Despite arrogant claims from Democrats that New Hampshire voters can thank them for a low unemployment rate, business tax cuts, adequate funding for education and mental health, this past year proved otherwise.

Coming out of this public health crisis, New Hampshire saw a desperate need for more education options that fit the needs of families. What did the Democrats do? Instead of helping these families, they advocated for the unions and used their network to advance their own radical agenda of indoctrination. They used the same old bullying tactics and backed families into a corner with no relief. They made everyday people feel like the enemy.

Not only were education needs not met with public schools closed with no options for parents, the mental-health issue crept into our school-age children. It crept into the lives of our veterans and those who could not afford mental health services. Instead of so-called relief, Democrats took the time to bash Republicans without offering sound solutions.

Another issue they claim credit for is helping to close loopholes in tax cuts for big businesses like Netflix and Amazon. Ironically, it was these big businesses that profited the most from phasing out small businesses run by average, hardworking families.

The New Hampshire left boasts about low unemployment and helping people get back to work. Someone should remind them that job creation is not the same as people finally getting back to work after not working for the better part of a year. It seems our friends across the aisle forget how resilient people of the Granite State are, and how it is through liberty and rugged individualism that everyone was able to come out of this and move forward. They did this while hiding in their own homes, disrupting committee meetings, keeping us out of the State House and stacking public testimony with out-of-state lobbyists with no vested interest in what happens in our home state. Democrats forgot about you, the voter.

Republicans did not forget our promise to the people of New Hampshire to cut business taxes, provide financial relief for families, fund much needed infrastructure programs and clean water projects, protect children and the unborn, small businesses and the New Hampshire Advantage.

The Republican budget also funded improved mental health services in the form of a mobile psychiatric unit and facility. While Democrats spent the better part of the past year mudslinging and shirking their responsibility to the taxpayers, Republicans rolled up their sleeves and got to work — and we completed our mission despite our colleagues’ inability to see past themselves.

This Republican budget not only answered the immediate needs of financial security — it also addressed much more pressing issues like executive orders and individual liberty — liberty that the radical left has been working to erode and what Republicans have been working to uphold.

As legislators, we work for the people and advocate on their behalf for a better, truly tax-free, business and family-friendly state. I can’t say the same is true for our Democratic friends. New Hampshire deserves better. We are sick of the regurgitated talking points of Democratic robots and their federal overlords. Vote for a better future for NH and its citizens — vote Republican.

Merner: Looking out For Veterans

Granite Staters from all walks of life will benefit from the Republican budget passed last month and I am proud to say that New Hampshire’s Veterans will be amongst that long list. No group of individuals displays the same level of commitment to our nation and its principles than members of our armed services. When the call of duty arose, they stood to protect, defend, and make the ultimate sacrifice for our nation. We as a country can never truly repay their sacrifices and devotion, but we can ensure they receive the quality services that they deserve. The Republican budget does that by giving support to veterans mental health.

The Covid-19 pandemic had a dramatic impact on mental health as millions grappled with feelings of isolation and loneliness. Unfortunately, this disproportionately impacted our veterans community who experience mental illness and suicide rates significantly higher than the general population. No one should have to feel the loneliness experienced by many that were isolated during the pandemic, let alone our veterans. The soldiers’ creed says “I will never leave a fallen comrade”, we as legislators must honor that commitment to the ones still here and in need of our help. The Republican budget honors this and makes a significant investment in supporting veterans experiencing the effects of social isolation by appropriating $1.5 million to the Veterans Administration for expanded mental health care access. The people that defend our freedoms should never feel alone in their most urgent time of need.

Thomas: New Hampshire GOP delivered on promises to lower taxes

Part of my campaign pledge last election was to lower taxes and expand our New Hampshire advantage. This was a major theme throughout the state, and judging by the voters who put us back into the majority, I believe they also wanted that and more.

I’m pleased to report we’ve done just that.

We lowered taxes. We increased thresholds to exempt an additional 30,000 Granite State small businesses from even filing state taxes.

We reduced employer taxes and the rooms and meals tax. And, as a result of the Republican budget we passed, we are eliminating New Hampshire’s interest and dividends tax – our only form of an income tax – over the next five years.

There’s a lot of misinformation and plain lies circulating on TV and online about our Republican budget.

We passed a balanced, appropriate budget for New Hampshire that lives up to our promises and delivers on our campaign pledges. While so many states are increasing taxes and spending more, New Hampshire is cutting taxes and spending less.

We’re going to see the positive impacts of our 2021-22 Republican budget for years to come.

It’s a privilege to serve my neighbors in the Statehouse, and I’m proud of the work we’ve been able to accomplish.

I hope your readers don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions or concerns they may have.

TURCOTTE: GOP Tax Cut Will Help All Granite Staters

Judging by the reaction of New Hampshire’s left, the recently passed business tax deductions and Interest and Dividends (I&D) tax phaseout by the Republican-controlled legislature is an act in class warfare. But this is nothing new. Democrats have frequently shown their lack of economic and fiscal acumen by simply regurgitating their same old mantras.

Let’s take an analytical, rather than emotional, approach and see just how these changes can impact all of our citizens and taxpayers.

Regarding business taxes, the Business Enterprise Tax (BET) and Business Profits Tax (BPT) were lowered by 9 percent and 2 percent respectively. More importantly, the threshold for filing taxes was raised and by doing so, it is estimated 30,000 New Hampshire small businesses will now not require any filing. The heart and soul of our state, these small businesses will not only save money on taxes but will now forego hours and/or days preparing and filing paperwork. These businesses can now pass their tax savings on to their employees in the form of wage/benefit increases, or lower their product and service prices for their customers. And though the liberals scream “these tax cuts will go to fat-cat corporations”, the economic principles of the free market, supply and demand, and competition will always prevail. In doing so, just like for the trickle-down effects small businesses will receive, the reduced taxes on even large corporations will translate into better pay for employees and/or reduced prices for New Hampshire’s consumers.

The phase out of the I&D tax will play an important part in keeping retirees and wealthy individuals from emigrating to other states without an interest and dividends tax. (Florida is a great example.) High taxes incentive high earners, savers and the wealthy to flee as is currently happening in states like New York, New Jersey, Illinois and California. Bureaucrats in those states have raised taxes on the wealthy and high earners to make up for revenue shortfalls or to increase social programs. This causes those target taxpayers to move elsewhere only exacerbating the revenue situation.

There are a couple others benefit to eliminating the I&D tax and keeping retirees here in New Hampshire. First, retirees and high-income earners spend their money here rather than somewhere else. Secondly, retirees pay property taxes just as everyone else, yet they do not put economic pressure on our school system. The average cost to educate a kindergarten through high school student is nearly $20,000 a year in New Hampshire. If an average household has two kids in public school, that’s nearly $40,000 cost to the town. A retiree household with no kids is a zero-dollar cost. A few hundred or thousand dollars lost by not taxing these individuals via an I&D tax is more than offset by the absence of the cost associated with education.

Contrary to the soundbites and wailing of the left, reducing taxes will help the bottom line of all New Hampshire’s citizens including democrats. Heading into the immediate future, your Republican led legislature looks forward to further enhancing all of our economic and fiscal lives.

Pearl, Moffett, Cambrils: A budget worth celebrating

There’s been a lot of misinformation about the recently passed state budget. The truth is, it’s remarkable and worth celebrating. Here are some of the things the new budget delivers: over $170 million in tax cuts, reduction in Business Profits Tax to 7.6%, reduction in Business Enterprise Tax to 0.55%, phase-out of Interest and Dividends tax over the next five years, more money to the “Rainy Day Fund,” reduction in Meals and Rooms Rate to 8.5% and reduction in property taxes by $100 million.

When the people of New Hampshire sent Republicans to Concord, they did so with the orders to avoid Democrat spending and taxing sprees. The last time the Democrats had total control of the State House (2007-2010), they raised or created over 100 taxes and fees. This new budget not only delivers on the promise not to overspend, but also provides a strong foundation to help New Hampshire grow.

This budget’s tax cuts benefit New Hampshire families, businesses and consumers and will make us the only truly “income tax free” state in the country. New Hampshire families spoke loudly about the need for property tax reduction. We listened and reduced property taxes by lowering the amount of Statewide Education Property Tax (SWEPT) taxes that each town must collect.

But instead of having the loss of such revenue impact schools, the state will later provide funds from other means to pay the difference. Then in the fall when property tax rates are set, municipalities will see lower tax rates. Why this convoluted method? GOP legislators believe that if we give towns or school districts dollars before tax rates are set then the money gets spent on other things instead of going back to taxpayers. This methodology guarantees a reduction in property taxes. Promise kept.

Every budget includes non-budgetary measures. Here are some of the great non-fiscal items incorporated into this budget: protection for the unborn (prohibits late term abortions in the 7th, 8th and 9th month), Education Freedom Savings Accounts for poorer families, $8 million for mobile crisis units and community health programs, $30 million for a 24-bed secure psychiatric facility, better funding for veterans services and programs, increased funding for multiple infrastructure programs and wastewater projects, and more protections for youngsters to include $500,000 for Internet Crimes Against Children Fund.

House Republicans were able to support these New Hampshire priorities due to compromise, hard bargaining, good communication and real leadership from both the legislative and executive branches.

New Hampshire is the region’s most prosperous and liveable state with the country’s lowest unemployment rate. It’s no coincidence that New Hampshire is also the northeast’s most Republican state as well.

There is so much to be celebrated in this budget, but the proof of its efficacy will be in the proverbial political pudding. Republicans made promises to the voters, and Republicans delivered.

Rhodes: Empowerment not for leftists to define

There are a lot of ways women feel empowered, but the basic function is always the same — overcoming a difficult obstacle. It is never easy, but empowerment is never a simple achievement.

This year’s budget provision to limit abortions gives women something to really be empowered about — a layer of confidence toward protecting their children.

While leftist call this “restriction” a radical attack on women, they forget the attacks they inflict on our most vulnerable every single day. They forget that a majority of Americans object to late term abortions (20 weeks, or five months), and that this legislation progressed New Hampshire forward to align with 43 other states’ current practices.

In fact, America is only one of four countries that allow late-term abortions (along with China and North Korea). This isn’t new, this isn’t radical — in fact it’s long overdue.

Further, the governor hasn’t made himself “anti-women” in signing off on this budget — if anything he’s proved he supports ALL women, including the most vulnerable. We need to be realistic in acknowledging that this isn’t a trade-off between the “freedom women feel” versus “the validity of the life being killed.”

This budget provision tells women they don’t have to kill their child in order to be successful, that they don’t have to make a regrettable choice for the sake of the progressive status-quo. This budget is pro-child, and most definitely pro-women.

Hobson: Most empowering state budget in New Hampshire history

Our Republican House majority worked with the Republican Senate and Governor Chris Sununu to implement the most empowering state budget in New Hampshire history.

We provided over $100 million to New Hampshire small businesses in Paycheck Protection Plan tax relief.

We expanded the exemptions on employer taxes, exempting an additional 30,000 Granite State small businesses from having to even file taxes after we raised the minimum business tax thresholds.

We reduced the business enterprise tax by 8.33% and the business profit tax by 1.30%.

We cut $100 million in the statewide property tax, putting more money directly into people’s pockets.

Following the devastating economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Republicans in New Hampshire recognized the need for real economic relief and we delivered for all Granite Staters. Our budget truly has a tax cut for everyone, and successful Republican management of our state going forward will enable even further tax reductions and eliminations.

Over the course of the next five years, we are fully eliminating the interest and dividends tax — making New Hampshire a truly income tax free state.

Republicans will continue to fight for Granite Staters and do what we can to reduce the burden of government and allow our economy to thrive. I’m proud of our Republican budget and I’m happy we could deliver such a victory for New Hampshire.

ALEXANDER: Tax relief Republicans can be proud of in NH

Goffstown residents and businesses are going to see historic tax relief as a result of our recently passed Republican budget.

Due to the reforms and tax reductions we put into place in the current budget, over the next 10 years Granite Staters will see more than a billion dollars in tax savings. We’re reducing taxes on employers, lowering the cost of going out to eat or staying up north, and we’re fully eliminating the interest and dividends tax over the next 5 years.

Over 30,000 additional Granite State small businesses are going to be exempt from even filing taxes as we raised the minimum business tax thresholds.

This is a budget I was proud to support and I am even prouder to promote it to Goffstown residents. This was a historic New Hampshire budget and Granite Staters ought to know that Republicans delivered for them.

Sweeney: Newly minted budget expands ‘New Hampshire advantage’

Salem stands to benefit greatly from the actions the Legislature has taken this year, especially with the transformational state budget we just passed.

We’re reducing taxes on employers, eliminating the interest and dividends tax over the next five years, and raising the minimum threshold for tax filings so that 30,000 additional Granite State small businesses would no longer have to even file their taxes.

There are wins in this budget for everyone.

We’re expanding school choice through educational freedom accounts to support opportunity and flexibility for low-income families. Our tax relief will see a lower rooms and meals tax, benefiting Salem restaurants, and we’re going to see over $1 billion in tax savings across the Granite State over the next 10 years.

We’re delivering real property tax relief by cutting $100 million from the statewide property tax and investing in our municipalities through infrastructure and an increase in the rooms and meals tax revenue distribution.

We’re also instituting a paid family medical leave program, without an income tax, that will empower Granite State workers and employers to opt into a program that works for them in order to retain and attract talented and young people from across the country to come to the Granite State.

When I ran to be one of Salem’s state representatives, I pledged to work with Sen. Chuck Morse and Gov. Chris Sununu to expand and defend our New Hampshire advantage.

Our recently passed Republican budget did just that.