ABC New Hampshire & Vermont News


Issues Impacting Your Business Debated by Public Policy Decision Makers

As is the case with the Federal Government, state legislatures and municipalities across the country, budget issues and related debates continue to dominate the public policy decision making process. However, other issues are included on the calendar of hearings and lobbying efforts are on- going to promote and oppose issues impacting construction professionals. As the 2013 legislative session winds down, below are bills in the NH legislature that ABC has prioritized and a summary of the topics and status as of June 1. Please contact the chapter office with any questions. You will be kept informed of any changes in regulations that may develop.
 
HB169
 
Title: establishing an employers' private right of action to enforce the payment of workers' compensation coverage (i.e. an employer, union or other entity would be able to bring action, sue, another employer who they believe is violating workers compensation regulations). All about misclassification (ee vs. independent contractor). “Deputizes” private businesses to enforce regulations currently enforced by the Labor Department. Concerns about alleged violations being brought by competitors or unions. Is the Labor Department unable to enforce their regulations? If so, focus should be on why and improving their ability to do their job. Committee will further study; try to seek solution to state DOL enforcing 2nd, 3rd tiered subs. 
 
House Status:  RETAINED IN HOUSE COMMITTEE
 
HB203
 
Title: Relative to workers’ compensation coverage for contractors on state projects and state land timber sales. Attempt to clarify existing exemption of deliveries to job site. Effort will be made to clarify through administrative solution rather than legislation.
 
House Status:  RETAINED IN HOUSE COMMITTEE 
 
HB249
 
Title: requiring employers to verify an employee's eligibility to work in the United States.  Poorly written bill, attempting to make all new hires by the State of NH subject to everify.  Although not intended to impact companies that contract with the State, the bills language is unclear. Subcommittee will work on and make recommendation by mid November.
 
House Status:  RETAINED IN HOUSE COMMITTEE 
 
HB350
 
Title: prohibiting discrimination against the unemployed. Attempting to make unemployed a protected status (i.e. an employer cannot discriminate against hiring a potential employee due to their being unemployed for a period of time). How do you prove being unemployed was the reason they were not hired? Are you prevented from even asking about gaps in employment history? Many concerns with this bill. Committee has questions for Dept of Employment Security. 
 
House Status:  RETAINED IN HOUSE COMMITTEE 
 
HB385
 
Title: relative to licensure of, and the performance of electrical work by, elevator and accessibility lift mechanics. Clarifies “jurisdiction” and ability of elevator mechanics to perform lift installations.
 
House Status:  PASSED / ADOPTED WITH AMENDMENT 
 
Senate Status:  PASSED/ADOPTED WITH AMENDMENT 
 
SB54
 
Title: relative to appeals from the department of administrative services bureau of public works design and construction. Clarification requested by Dept. of Admin Services to enable more timely resolution of disputes on State projects.
 
House Status:  PASSED / ADOPTED WITH AMENDMENT 
 
Senate Status:  PASSED / ADOPTED WITH AMENDMENT 
 
SB116
 
Title: relative to the licensure of liquefied propane installation and service technicians. ABCs main interest is reducing # of OJT hours for propane and gas fitter/installer licensure, which is included in bill. 
 
House Status:  RETAINED IN COMMITTEE and combined with SB189 for one comprehensive bill. 
 
Senate Status:  PASSED / ADOPTED 
 
 
B143
 
Title: relative to continuation of benefits for unemployed persons who are attempting to establish a business.  Application and criteria established to participate, must have eligibility remaining. If in program, individual is removed from employers unemployment, does not impact employers tax rate. Benefits are paid from unemployment trust fund. Taken from model DOL language. Concerns about criteria that will be established to be eligible and enforcement. Also concerned about unfair opportunity for a special class of unemployed and the impact on the trust fund.  
 
House Status:  PASSED/ADOPTED
 
Senate Status:  PASSED / ADOPTED 
 
SB152
 
Title: relative to video lottery and table gaming. ABC’s interest in gaming legislation was the required capital expenditure for the licensed casino location and potential related construction activity.
 
House Status:  KILLED, voted Inexpedient to Legislate   
 
Senate Status:  PASSED / ADOPTED WITH AMENDMENT 
 
 
SB177
 
Title: relative to the procurement process for state services and establishing a state contracting standards board. All state procurement. Too many parts to this legislation, too inclusive of various products and services with unique issues and purchasing criteria. Purchasing of construction services is managed by Department of Admin Services and Department of Transportation. Not perfect but industry/agency communication is appropriate process to resolve issues, do not need another layer of politically inspired input.
 
House Status:  
 
Senate Status:  LAID ON TABLE, no action 
 
SB189
 
Title: relative to the licensure of fuel gas fitters and plumbers by a mechanical licensing board established within the department of safety and transferring regulation of plumbers to the mechanical licensing board.   
 
House Status:  OUGHT TO PASS (June 5 vote). Combined with SB116 for one comprehensive bill. 
 
Senate Status:  PASSED / ADOPTED WITH AMENDMENT

 



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