Great news for Milford

As the Sept. 26 edition of The Cabinet went to press, state budget negotiations were underway between the Legislature and Gov. Chris Sununu. The Sept. 26 article, New Hampshire citizens need a budget now, spoke to the state budget impasse due to the governor’s July 1 veto of the state budget bills. The Continuing Resolution that was in place, the temporary agreement to fund state government at prior year levels, was set to expire on Oct. 1.

The good news: a budget compromise was reached and then signed into law before the Oct. 1 deadline. The new, negotiated state budget represents a continued commitment by House and Senate budget writers to reach a compromise with the Governor. We understood that delivering a balanced budget that moves New Hampshire forward was a bigger goal than any party priority.

The good news for Milford: The negotiated budget law includes municipal aid property tax relief and provides an unprecedented increase in state funding for our public schools. This school aid makes critical investments in our kids’ educations and futures while also taking pressure off of property taxpayers. The combined municipal aid and new education funding allocated to Milford will be approximately $2.5 million over the next biennium.

Serving as your state representative over the past three years, I’ve continued to hear from you about property tax relief and school funding as top priorities for our community. As part of the budget writing team, I heard these priorities voiced clearly by citizens across the state at public hearings, work sessions, in letters, emails and phone calls. We worked diligently in Concord with our colleagues to ensure your priorities were at the heart of policy and budget decisions.

The state budget is often referred to as a moral document. A state’s funding priorities should reflect the values of the people and the government officials elected. I am proud of this state budget plan and very grateful for the opportunity to have served you on the budget committee. House Representatives and Senators worked hard to establish this state plan that focuses on NH citizens’ priorities and needs. Beyond property tax relief, additional public school and university system funding, the budget plan includes solutions that address NH’s substance misuse and mental health crises. The budget supports critical family strengthening and child protection and well-being initiatives. Key policies that support NH’s businesses, workforce development, working families and the economy are also incorporated. It is a fiscally responsible plan that focuses on making NH a place where all Granite Staters can live and thrive.