My Pledge

I pledge to be fiscally responsible, protective of individual rights, attentive to local needs, supportive of families, and responsive to constituents.

Contributions may be made
c/o Andrew Robertson fiscal agent - PO Box 498 - Northwood, NH 03261 or online at ACT BLUE.

FB: Maureen Mann-NH House of Representatives Contact: mmann@metrocast.net.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Stamp Money Out of Politics

Was invited to a meeting today with Ben Cohen,
co-founder of Ben and Jerry's ice cream. Cohen is
working hard to get anonymous, unlimited campaign donations
out of politics. Honored to meet Cohen and Dan Gross who
owns the Euphoria Emporium oxygen bar in Manchester and
is involved in the same cause.


Saturday, April 18, 2015

May 19 is Special Election Day for State Rep. for Rockingham 32


Polls open at the Candia Town Offices  [not the school] at 9:30 am and close at 7:00 pm
Polls open at the Deerfield Town Hall on Church Street at 7:00 am and close at 7:00 pm
Polls open at the Northwood Town Offices [not St.J Church] at 7:00 am and close at 7:00 pm
Polls open at the Nottingham Town Offices  at 8:00 am and close at 7:00 pm

PLEASE GIVE ME YOUR VOTE!

Friday, April 17, 2015

Interesting map of what residents pay in property and 'sin' taxes in each state.  New Hampshire is the only state where more than 10 percent of state revenue comes from each of these taxes. Probably fine if you are high income. Not so fine if you are middle income or lower.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

About Me Part Two: Legislative Work



Meeting with residents and DOT about traffic signal
This is a sampling of my work in the state legislature:

First, an accomplishment of which I am very proud. After two years of work, and help from Senator Jack Barnes and Epsom reps Carole Brown and Charlie Yeaton, I was able to get the DOT to install a traffic signal at the intersection of Routes 107 and 4 in Epson. This was a particularly dangerous intersection and at the time Deerfield students often drove to Concord High School as there was no bus transportation. 
I was also instrumental, again working with Senator Barnes, in getting road signs honoring Bob Johnson of Northwood and Joe Stone of Deerfield installed in their communities. Both were Republicans.

I have sponsored or co-sponsored bills at the request of each of the communities I represented.

I have sponsored several bills seeking to give communities [Nottingham and Northwood locally as involved in USA Springs] control of their own resources, and relative to large groundwater withdrawals. While local control has never been achieved, at least the permit granting period has been reduced to five years rather than 10 if a town is stuck with a company which does not complete construction during that time. Also, more local input has been granted in some instances.

I have sponsored bills:

Permitting abutters control of a dam at Jenness Pond in Northwood    

Classifying Pleasant Lake in Deerfield a Class A Lake; usable for town drinking water in emergency                                                                                                                                                 

Relative to municipal lease agreements for certain equipment.

Relative to the composition of public agency boards concerning housing standards.

Establishing a canine veterans day--deals with service dogs such as military, search and rescue, fish and game dogs.

Relative to the neglect of elderly, disabled, or impaired adults and relative to financial exploitation--stiff penalties for financial or physical abuse.

Requiring state police to wear a camera when interacting with the public.

Decriminalization of marijuana

Repeal of the Death Penalty

Home wine making 

Promoting of NH-made products

Town control over energy projects they chose to support

Signing town manifest--dealing with glitch affecting only 7 NH towns including Deerfield

Requiring collision insurance for motor vehicles

I have also sponsored two bills to prevent ALEC and similar out-of-state groups [left or right leaning] from writing legislation which is not acknowledged by the sponsors to be model legislation from special interest groups.

I have co-sponsored two bills dealing with transparency in campaign contributions and expenditures, and relative to reporting of campaign expenditures.  

Study committee on DOT policies on mitigating highway noise 

I was the prime sponsor of HB660 requiring the labeling of genetically engineered foods and agricultural commodities. In 2014 I was the recipient of the NOFA-NH Policy Maker of the Year award for my work on this bill.

I have also been the legislative liaison to UNH Co-operation Extension.

About Me Part One: Background


At my mother's teacher retirement party

Over the last month, I have attended Democratic caucuses in our four towns. I was asked to supply some background information and information on some of the bills I have sponsored. So thought I would also post it here. You can always contact me for more information at mmann@metrocast.net.

Background:  My father died when I was a child leaving my mother with five children under the age of 10.  I still have memories of the first year after he died when my previously stay-at-home mother applied for job after job only to be told they would not hire a woman with children as she would probably stay home from work if the children were sick, or not concentrate on her work, etc.

Finally she got a teaching job at an elementary school. You can be damned sure someone was almost dead before she missed a day at work. Two of the issues when she started teaching were that HS teachers received more than elementary teachers and men more than women. Through the union this was changed and she always spoke of how important union support was to her. The stability of her teaching job gave each of her five children the opportunity to pursue higher education but she particularly stressed it for me, the only girl, as she knew how importance independence and self-support were for women.

Through her experience I learned about the importance of equal treatment for women and other minorities, and the need to allow workers to organize.

When I graduated from college I had been accepted to graduate school but loved student teaching. So when I was offered a job at that school I took it. The first thing my mother said was to join the union. I ended up being a member of the contract negotiating team for many years.  I continued my education getting a M.Ed and went on for 45 credits beyond.

An initiative was passed in Massachusetts where I taught called Proposition 2 ½.  It decimated public education and one-third, about 11 teachers, were immediately let go from my Department. Because the person below me on the salary schedule was the brother of the chairman of the school committee I had a job but only a part time schedule which just covered health care. I had earned my RE broker license in the past so I went to work selling real estate.

I was quite successful and after a few years, still teaching two periods a day, I opened my own company with three other women.  It was a 24-hour-a-day job.  I continued doing this for about 10 years until we merged with another company. At that same time the union had made a decision not to allow part-time teaching so I decided to go back to teaching full time, and train new sales associates and do real estate part time.

I took early retirement when we moved to New Hampshire in 2000. Because I was used to reading a daily local newspaper, as well at the Boston Globe, I found it hard to get information about what was going on locally. So in 2005 I wrote the grant which resulted in The Forum. It has received several awards as well at the Knight Foundation award for citizen journalism. I have served in just about every position in the Forum.

My first real job, during high school, was in a library although I had done babysitting and was a Jr.  Counselor in a girl scout camp, etc prior to that. I have always loved to read and worked in the library [and dishroom and cafeteria] to help earn my way through college. I have been a Friend of the Library and volunteer wherever I have lived.

My first effort in Deerfield was to become a library volunteer and help revive the Friends of the Library. I have also served as a library trustee for several terms. I have volunteered with the Deerfield Community Church, supported the Nottingham UU Church, been a member of the MBC, a member of UNH Cooperative Extension, in charge of chowder for the Deerfield Fair, cooked and volunteered for Senior Lunch, and volunteered in several other capacities in the town. In 2006 I was given the Sherburne Award for service to the community of Deerfield.

In 2007 when the Honorable Robert Johnson resigned his state representative seat I was asked to run. I was successful and was elected again in 2008. I lost in the veto-proof Republican landslide in 2010, was re-elected in 2012 and lost again in 2014 to Brian Dobson who resigned the first day of the session to take a job with Congressman Frank Guinta. I served on the Committee on Public Works and Highways during all my terms, and was Committee Clerk during the last biennium.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

The Real Cost of Public Education

A recent comment on a letter in our local newspaper made me decide to discuss the issue of 
education and how the proposed budget cuts recently passed by the House will affect both public education and property tax payers. The Honorable Romeo Danais stated that “all sides agreed that the average cost of education for a public school student was approx. $14,000./student, yet, the state only awards $7,000./student for charter schools.” He then goes on to give his explanation of why state aid to education would cost taxpayers less if funding went to charter rather than regular public schools.

Where Danais misleads, inadvertently I am sure, is that while the state actually awards that $7000 times the average daily student membership (ADM) to the charter school, the state only awards $3561.27 in 2015 adequacy grants x ADM per regular public school student. See education.nh.gov/data.

So, while the average cost of educating a NH student IS $14,000, the difference between what is award by the state and what a community spends is a made up by local property taxpayers.

There is some additional money beyond the $3661.27 awarded by the state for the number of students in a school who meet the following criteria:
1780.63 per child eligible for free or reduced lunch
1915.86 per child receiving certain special needs services
697.77 per child eligible for English Language Learners
697.77 per child not proficient in 3rd grade testing, but only if child not eligible for any of the above.

Thus, a school with one or more children receiving those services could increase the award to the school based on which services and how many students. However only a small number of students fit all three additional award categories and those schools which do educate such students would still be awarded only $7955.53 in state funding per identified child. It turns out that the average amount of state funding awarded in NH per pupil is $2000 more for charter school students than for students attending regular public schools.

I am not opposed to charter schools. I have met parents who are very happy with the ones their children attend and they have seen their children blossom. But with the already inadequate funding for public schools, compounded by the $50,000,000 cut to public education in the recently passed House budget, current funding must be directed to where it is most needed, and that is not new charter schools.

Charter schools do not have the fiscal responsibilities of public school districts. They do not have the costs of owning and maintaining school buildings and grounds. They do not provide transportation or after school sports/programs. The do not bear ELL or special needs costs nor responsibility for outside placement. They do not have expenses related to speech, hearing, and occupational therapy services. These costs are standard in public school budgets because public schools educate every child. And, public schools cannot require as a condition of acceptance that parents actively engage in the education of their child.

Representative Danais also questioned a comment that education and other costs that in the past have been born by the state will now be downshifted to localities. School funding is just one example. On average, each town will lose 10 percent of its stabilization award. Taxpayers in our four towns can pay the cost of meetings to restructure school budgets and try to renegotiate contracts with providers and staff, or they can pay more property taxes to make up the difference. Either way they pay because the state does not meet previously-agreed-to obligations. This is downshifting. [I am planning to write about other downshifting that will affect local property tax payers in the near future.]

These cuts to education were not in the budget originally proposed by the House Finance Committee. The $50,000,000 came about because of the outcry after the $88,000,000 cut to the DOT budget became public. To restore some DOT funding, education was cut instead. Everyone driving on public roads can see potholes. Education costs are more hidden and directly affect fewer of us, so the outcry is less. Indirectly, of course, all of us are affected when our state's children are less able to compete in an expanding world.

Friday, April 10, 2015

NH AFL-CIO Endorsement


DEERFIELD, NH- Maureen Mann, a former educator and New Hampshire state representative, has officially been endorsed by one of the largest unions in the state. The New Hampshire AFL-CIO is encouraging members of its 43 affiliated unions who live in Rockingham District 32 [Candia, Deerfield, Northwood, Nottingham] to vote for Mann in the May 19 special election.

“I’m proud to have the endorsement of an organization that represents working people across New Hampshire,” Mann said. “As a state representative, I have a proven track record of protecting the interests of working families in the Granite State.” 

Mann, who won an uncontested primary on March 31, narrowly lost re-election 2014 to Brian F. Dobson, who promptly resigned to work for U.S. Rep. Frank Guinta. She faces 19-year-old Yvonne Dean-Bailey, a freshman at Mount Holyoke College in Massachusetts, in the special election on May 19.
“Working people in Deerfield, Northwood, Nottingham, and Candia deserve a representative who will fight for their livelihoods, their wages, and their right to form unions,” Mann continued. “In Concord, I’ll vote for a budget that protects state employees from unnecessary layoffs and budget cuts, and will adamantly oppose any legislation that infringes on workers’ rights.”

“I’ve lived in this district for years, and will continue to listen to the everyday concerns of the residents in these four towns, whether it’s working to have a traffic light installed at a busy intersection or to have potholes filled on local roads. I will represent them, not out of state backers.”