NASHUA BULLETIN                 April 22, 2016
Bulletin No. 14
Welcome to the Chamber's weekly legislative newsletter, The Advocate!  This newsletter is our recap of what happened in Concord each week during the legislative session, and a preview of what is coming up in the following week that pertains to various business interests. Although we will be letting you know about legislation that we think is of note, don't hesitate to tell us about bills that you may be familiar with and which you think are worth our review. We exist to serve you, our members.

Intermodal Project Bill Moves One Step Closer To Completion (SB 549)
The subcommittee of House Public Works that is working on SB 549 (the legislation which we strongly support that would establish the procedures for creating public/private partnerships for intermodal transportation) met again this week in order to try to come to a final decision on wording for the bill.  SB 549's prime sponsor, Senator Bette Lasky, was there at the subcommittee (despite a very busy schedule in the Senate Judiciary Committee on which she sits), and she presented an amendment that was intended to resolve the issues that the subcommittee raised at its last meeting, chiefly surrounding the inclusion of these public/private partnerships in the State's 10- Year Transportation Infrastructure Improvement Plan. 
One thing that came up at the subcommittee meeting is that at least a couple of the subcommittee members seem to want all of these public/private partnership projects to be approved by the Governor and Council, even when there is no state money at issue.  This legislation is being considered precisely in order to incentivize and facilitate the use of private resources so as to enable these types of projects to be more swiftly developed and completed, so we hope that the final version of this bill will not saddle these projects with unnecessary procedural restrictions.
The subcommittee will meet one more time next week, at which time we expect a vote on a final amendment that will go to the full Committee.

Next Week:  Rail Again (HB 2016)
Speaking of the 10-Year Plan, on Tuesday at 1:30 PM the Senate Transportation Committee will hold a public hearing on HB 2016, the latest draft of that plan. Our goal for the bill now that it is in the Senate is to see an amendment passed that will restore the $4,000,000 in funding for continued work on the Capital Corridor Project that was removed by a narrow vote when HB 2016 was being considered on the floor of the House. A big thank you to Senators Bette Lasky and Kevin Avard, who will be proposing the amendment language for the Committee's consideration. The Chamber has been working with a number of other stakeholders on this one, and the public hearing on Tuesday will be the first step in the final push. Chamber President Tracy Hatch will be there to testify on behalf of the Chamber.
If you and your company are in support of this next step - to determine the track layout and environmental assessment and to get detailed capital and operational financial plans based on that layout/assessment - please let the members of the Transportation Committee know. Here's their contact information:
Nancy Stiles, Chairman 
(603) 271-3093

Regina Birdsell,  Vice Chairman 
(603) 271-4151
David Watters | (603) 271-8631 

Gary Daniels | (603) 271-3042

Dan Feltes | (603) 271-3067
The vote by the full Senate will have to happen by May 12th, so we are really in the homestretch here. Next week, we'll let you know how the hearing went.

Highway Sign Bill Ready To Be Signed (SB 519)
We'll close with some good news from Wednesday's House session, where the full House voted to pass SB 519, the legislation supported by the Chamber that will allow informational signs to be placed in advance of intersections on limited access highways south of Concord. These signs can advertise food, fuel, lodging, camping and attractions - which makes this bill a big improvement over the existing law, which only allows signs for attractions. This one has been a long time in the making, as a similar bill that was sponsored by Senator Peggy Gilmour several years ago was amended by the House and shrunk down to the existing attractions-only version that fortunately is being changed.  Since the House did not amend this bill, it now goes to the Governor's desk.

Tracy Hatch
President & CEO
Greater Nashua Chamber of Commerce 
Sponsored by
Devine Millimet

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April 15th, 2016
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Greater Nashua Chamber of Commerce | (603) 881-8333 |
142 Main St., 5th Floor
Nashua, NH 03060

Greater Nashua Chamber of Commerce | 142 Main St. | 5th Floor | Nashua | NH | 03060