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Priority Bills Update

Posted: February 11, 2015

At this point in the legislative session, CSNI has identified the attached 29 pieces of legislation that we will monitor and/or actively advocate for or against. This list could change at any time. Of interest are bills relative to the governance and taxation of 501 c 3 charitable organizations and the prohibition/elimination of the ability of NH employers to seek waivers from the Department of Labor to pay people with a disability less than the minimum wage for certain jobs. Special education and education in general are always hot topics in the Legislature and 2015 is no different. See attached for more information on those bills.

There are two bills this session that were of concern to CSNI that have already been dealt with in a favorable manner. The first is HB 569  this bill would subject many 501 c 3 organizations to the Business Enterprise Tax (all charitable organizations, like 501 c 3’s are currently exempted). The good news is that the House Ways and Means committee has voted to “retain” the legislation for one year of further study.

On another subject, the House Health and Human Services and Elderly Affairs committee has killed HB 687 relative to eligibility for Medicaid. This bill would have required DHHS to hire a technology vendor to conduct Medicaid eligibility on behalf of the state and DHHS. There was a concern that this bill could have many unintended consequences. The committee, seeing no need for the bill, promptly killed it.

Yesterday, the House and Senate held hearings on two bills that would prohibit the payment of sub-mimum wages to people with disabilities. This issue has gained traction following a fall study committee that recommended NH adopt the policy of removing the ability of the Executive Branch to grant employers the ability to apply for waivers to pay people with disabilities less than the minimum wage. The bill has received strong support from various stakeholders. The two bills are HB 411 and SB 47.

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