NH District 6 Sen. James Gray (Rochester Voice file photo)
Our City and Town Election Workers did a terrific job at the State Primary and General elections. But COVID-19 is still with us and we must not lose sight of the town meetings that will be conducted this year. In fact some of the towns are scheduled to hold their deliberative session as early as the end of January.
After the state election the Secretary of State held internet meetings with the election officials. The Town Clerks and the Moderators were very happy with the flexibility that HB 1266 provided in processing the absentee ballots. They asked that those temporary changes be extended through the 2021 Town Meeting timeframe. LSR 21-1005 (now SB 2) was drafted to do just that.
During the Review of the LSR some of the towns and the NHMA commented on the problem that towns would have in rescheduling meetings using the changes enacted by HB 1129. Those problems include a prohibition in RSA 40:4, II(c) on delaying the deliberative session more than 72 hours and the requirement in RSA 669:1-a that the election be rescheduled to the Tuesday 2 weeks following the original date. The LSR was amended to fix those problems.
A motion will be made at the Senate Session on Jan 6 to suspend the rules, introduce and pass SB 2. If/When it passes it will be sent to the House that day for their action. To support the towns SB 2 needs to pass the House and be sent on to the Governor this week. I ask for your support of this bipartisan legislation.