Pelham - Windham News June 24, 2011 - 11
Gov. Lynch’s Veto Message Regarding HB 329
submitted by Colin Manning By the authority vested in me, pursuant to part II, Article 44 of the New Hampshire Constitution, on June 15, 2011, I vetoed HB 329.
I support parental notification and parental involvement in a minor’s decision to seek an abortion. The decision whether to complete a pregnancy or seek an abortion is a serious and life-changing one for any pregnant woman. Minors need and benefit from the support and guidance of their parents. However, any law must make reasonable
allowances for cases where that is not possible. I am particularly troubled by the lack of an exception for the victims of rape, incest and abuse. If the legislature works with me on this change and the other limited, common-sense changes outlined in this message, I would sign parental notification legislation. First, a young woman should not be
forced to involve the person that abused her in the first place in this decision. That is why of the 36 states that require some form of parental involvement, 16 include exceptions from notification for rape or
incest or abuse. There must be an exception for rape, incest and abuse in any parental notification law in New Hampshire. Second, some of the provisions of this legislation are unclear and too narrow. The health exception does not allow a physician to sufficiently exercise his or her best medical judgment and proceed with an abortion when a delay will create a grave and immediate risk to the minor’s health. For example, when a physician sees a minor patient who is hemorrhaging, the physician may not be able to definitively determine whether a delay in performing an abortion would result in the irreversible impairment of a major bodily function, even if the physician has determined that there is surely a grave and immediate risk to the minor’s health. The bill’s medical emergency provision requires a physician to determine in a very short time frame that a delay will create a serious risk of a substantial and irreversible impairment of a major bodily function. That standard is narrow, complex and unworkable. It is difficult for a physician - at any point in time - to be certain that a delay will present a “serious risk” that there
will be both a “substantial and irreversible” impairment of a major bodily function. If the physician chooses not go forward with the abortion because of uncertainty of the risk, the minor’s health could be affected. If the physician performs the abortion and is wrong in that determination, then he or she is subject to criminal liability. The medical emergency standard now in HB 329 needs to allow physicians to exercise their full professional judgment based on all the potential serious health impacts to their patients. Lastly, this bill subjects medical professionals to potential imprisonment and civil lawsuits without giving medical providers sufficient guidance on how to comply with the law. The law should include clear standards on what information must be collected from the minor and what records should be kept. Because this legislation lacks an exception for rape and incest, and for the other reasons I have articulated, I am vetoing HB 329.
If the legislature passes a bill that addresses these concerns, then I am prepared to sign a parental notification law.
House Majority Leader Voices Disappointment with Governor’s Veto on Parental Notification
submitted by House Republican Office The following statement was issued by House Majority Leader D.J. Bettencourt following the June 15 veto by Governor John Lynch of the parental notification legislation. “I am disappointed that our governor has turned his back on the parents of New Hampshire by vetoing legislation that supports their right to know when their minor daughter chooses to have an abortion. This is infuriating to House leadership who had received a verbal commitment from the governor that he would work with us on parental notification language that he could agree with. Throughout the entire process Governor Lynch remained silent and now it is clear that he misled us and never had any intention of working toward protecting children or parental rights in New Hampshire. In 2006, he told his constituents, ‘As governor, and as a father, I believe
parents should be involved in these important decisions.’ But once again, when it comes time to make the hard decisions, Governor Lynch has proven that he is not a leader. Instead he has shown that beneath his friendly moderate facade lurks a radical who has sided with the extreme special interest groups in denying a parent the right to know what is happening in the lives of their minor children. Today, an underage girl still needs a note from her parents to take a different bus home from school, or to be able to get something as simple as an aspirin from the school nurse, or even get her ears pierced. But, thanks to action taken today by Governor Lynch, if the same girl seeks an abortion, she doesn’t need approval from her parents or to even tell them what she is doing. They will have no role to play at all in one of the most critical decisions in her young life,” said Bettencourt.
Governor’s Veto Message Regarding HB 109
submitted by Colin Manning By the authority vested in me, pursuant to part II, Article 44 of the New Hampshire Constitution, on June 15, 2011, I vetoed HB 109, an act relative to residential fire sprinklers.
HB 109 prohibits local planning boards from requiring the installation of a fire suppression sprinkler system in proposed one or two-family residences as a condition of approval for a local permit. It also lessens the ability of local communities to work cooperatively with developers to move projects forward in cost-effective ways. Instead of allowing communities to work with developers to substitute sprinkler
systems, communities will now have to revert to requiring what may be more costly options: fire ponds, cisterns, wider road widths, increasing the size of building lots and increasing the size of distance between buildings.
HB 109 will also prohibit municipalities from enforcing their current sprinkler ordinances. Today, communities from Salem to Hooksett to Boscawen to Lebanon have these ordinances, which have been approved by the local governing bodies. I believe that the decision of whether or not to require fire sprinklers for new or renovated residential development should remain a local one. The State should not
dictate a required course of action. It is obviously the local community that is impacted from new residential development both in terms of land use and in terms of bearing the costs of providing increased fire protection services. This legislation will remove local control over an important issue. The State Fire Marshal and numerous local fire departments across the State also have concerns about the ability of local officials to continue to have fire sprinkler systems as a local option. For these reasons, I am vetoing HB 109.
Call Before You Dig
submitted by Elizabeth Wood, Community Planner, Windham Are you planning to dig a hole to build a landscaped pond? Do
you need to excavate to install a light post? Before you dig, State law requires that you notify utility companies of your intentions. This is to prevent the accidental disruption of underground facilities, which can be both dangerous and costly. If you are planning to dig, contact Dig Safe System, Inc. at 888- DIG-SAFE (344-7233) at least three business days advanced notice. Dig Safe System, Inc. is a free service that provides property owners, excavators, and contractors assistance to ensure that you are not disrupting underground facilities when you dig. When you call Dig Safe System, Inc. they will notify the utility companies of your proposed excavation project. Utility companies will then visit the work area and identify the location of their underground facilities with paint, stakes, or flags so that when you dig, you will know to avoid these areas. A permit number will be issued as confirmation. If you have questions or need more information, refer to the Dig Safe System, Inc. Website: www.digsafe.com
Windham Residents about Illegal Use of Fireworks
submitted by Windham Police Department Windham residents are reminded that possession and/or display of
fireworks are regulated by Town Ordinance and State Statute (RSA). While some fireworks are permissible, a significant number that are available for retail purchase may be displayed only by someone who has received a certificate of competency by the State of New Hampshire. Residents may review the following specific statutes and town ordinance for further information: • Chapter (RSA) 160-B: Fireworks • Chapter (RSA) 160-C: Permissible Fireworks • Windham Town Ordinance 2:02:04:89 Contact may be made with the Windham Police Department for further clarification or information.
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Pelham Man Arrested on Sexual Assault Charges
submitted by Pelham Police Department On June 17, members of the Pelham
Police Criminal Bureau arrested David Homen, 46, of Pelham, on a warrant, charging him with three counts of Aggravated Felonious Sexual Assault. The victim in this case was nine years old at the
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time of the alleged incidents. Homen was held at the Pelham Police Station on $25,000 cash
bail. He was scheduled for arraignment on Monday, June 20, at Salem District Court.
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