Kevin Landrigan: Winter vacation ends for school kids, lawmakers
CONCORD - "Enjoy yourselves, rest up, it's going to be a very difficult session, we all know that and I think there's a lot of work coming.''
That's Senate President Chuck Morse sending his 23 colleagues home for a winter break.
He's right about one thing. There's a heavy pile waiting as lawmakers come back from the slopes or warmer climates.
The clock is ticking. There is less than a month for the House and Senate to finish their own work on more than 1,000 bills.
House Speaker Shawn Jasper shoves them back into the fray as the House will wrap up nearly 100. They include banning tanning for minors under 18 and adding epilepsy and dementia to medical marijuana conditions.
Of immediate concern to Gov. Maggie Hassan. What are the Republican must-dos before they even get to her state budget?
For the Senate boss, it starts with cutting the state's two main business taxes.
"And just send a message to businesses in this state and others looking at New Hampshire that we're open for business,'' Morse said.
Then there's getting rid of a permit to a carry a concealed gun and changes to reduce the cost of worker's comp or on-the-job injury insurance.
The top House Democrat has his least favorite among that prized group.
"I think the idea of having police chiefs issue permits to carry a concealed weapon works in New Hampshire,'' said House Democratic Leader Steve Shurtleff.