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Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Redress of Grievance in Jeopardy LOB Room 301 2 pm 12/20/12

Action Alert: 

NH House Rules committee is intending to remove the Redress of Grievances Committee from the Rules of the House on Thursday at 2:00 pm - If the public wants to show concern over the loss, they should have a big presence. Room 301 keep it crowded so we can all get there!

If at all possible please to try to be there, the model other states are following is in jeopardy;Maybe Horrigan will actually live up to his own ramblings and vote to keep the redress of grievance committee as he stated here, but of course he didn't.

2013 Petitions to the New Hampshire House

Additional commentary by Rep. Timothy Horrigan
last revised: December 2012
See Also:
It probably seems a little silly to be listing the 2013 House Petitions, since there will almost certainly be no House Petitions and Redress Committee in 2013. The previous Speaker Bill O'Brien was committed to keeping the committee in place, even after House Counsel Ed Mosca became one of the many villains of the highly memorable "Youssef Petition." O'Brien did some work on redoing the committee's rules for the upcoming session. (He didn't include me or any other Democrats in that work, apparently since he considered us so insignificant that there was no need to even tell us what he was up to. I only found out because he told a reporter, and she passed the news on to me.)
O'Brien lost the Speakership: he narrowly held on to his seat, but over 100 of his fellow Republicans were not so lucky. He ended up not even being the Minority Leader. The new Speaker Terie Norelli has her expressed her opposition in the past to the creation— and continuance— of the committee, although in 2009 she helped create a process whereby petitions could be formally filed. There is only the most speculative possibility of the committee continuing to exist past January 2, 2013.
The 2013 session began on the first Wednesday in December, i.e., December 5, 2012. The main order of business for the House on December 5th was to elect a new Speaker, along with the House Clerk and the House Sergeant-at-Arms. The Senate simultaneously elected its President as well as its own Clerk and Sergeant-at-Arms. Finally, the House and Senate met in joint convention (not to be confused with Gus Breton's "joint conomtion") to elect the Secretary of State and the State Treasurer.
The House's standing committees are specified in House Rule 30, which currently has 23 subparagraphs lettered a through w. In 2012, there were 22 standing committees plus the Rules Committee. An amendment to Rule 30 is needed to create or abolish one or more committees. It would be bad form to bring a rules change to the floor of the full House without having a Rules Committee hearing first.
The Rules Committee won't have any members until the Speaker appoints some (probably herself, 4 other leading Democrats, the minority caucus leader and 3 other leading Republicans.) House Calendar #2, issued on Thursday, December 13, 2012 contains the following notice of a December 20, 2012 Rules Committee hearing:
2:00 p.m. Regular meeting.
That's all it says: "Regular meeting." The newly appointed committee will presumably hear testimony regarding the proposed abolishment of the Redress & Grievances and Constitutional Review & Statutory Recodification Committee. I would like to keep the Redress Committee in existence, even though many mistakes were made in 2011-2012. I am neutral about the Constitutional Review Committee, which proved to be useless but harmless. The big issue of the day will be guns in the State House. Right now there are only minimal restrictions on guns in the State House, except for the Senate chamber, a short hallway outside the Senate chamber, and the Governor's office, where they are banned. This will be an especially difficult issue this time around because of the recent spate of mass shootings.
I don't know how I will vote, since I don't know how many amendments will be presented on (or shortly after) January 2, 2013 to the full House nor do I know what form the amendment(s) will take.
In any case, several reps have submitted Legislative Services Requests ("LSR's") for several petitions during the September 2012 and November 2012 filing windows. Two of them were filed by Rep. Robert Luther, the man who introduced the inimitable Joshua Youssef to the Granite State political scene

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