CAPPING THE COMMISSION PAID TO ROOMS AND MEALS TAX LICENSEES: The House Ways & Means Committee has voted 19-0 to recommend that HB 254 be killed. The bill would cap the amount rooms and meals tax operators could retain for collecting the tax at $100 per month. Currently, operators are allowed to retain 3% of the taxes due to the state if they remit the amount due by the 15th day of the month following their collection. A big shout out goes to Eric Roberts (Lui Lui Restaurants), Dicky Desai (Hillbrook Motel in Bedford), and Rusty McLear (Hampshire Hospitality) who attended the public hearing and made a great case for defeating this bill. The full House will vote on the bill on February 14.
REDUCING THE COMMISSION PAID TO KENO LICENSEES: The House Ways & Means Committee has voted 16-3 to recommend that HB 390 be killed. The bill would reduce the amount a Keno licensee may retain from 8 to 5 percent the amount of the proceeds from Keno games. The full House will vote on this bill on February 14.
HOUSE KILLS BILL THAT WOULD HAVE REQUIRED DIFFERENTIAL PAY FOR THOSE WHO WORK AT NIGHT: The House killed HB 255, which would have required employers to pay employees who work between the hours of 10 pm and 6 am $2 more than their regular rate of pay for any hours worked during that timeframe. NHLRA opposed the bill.
ALLOWING TOWNS TO ADOPT A LOCAL ROOMS TAX: On Tuesday, February 5 the House Municipal & County Government Committee will hear HB 641, which would allow cities and towns to collect a daily charge of up to $2 per room containing occupied beds, or as a percentage of the price of the room, provided that the rate doesn’t exceed $2 per occupancy per 24-hour period. The hearing was rescheduled from last week to next Tuesday. NHLRA opposes this bill.
FAMILY AND MEDICAL LEAVE PROGRAM: On Wednesday, February 6 the House Labor Committee will hear HB 712, which would establish a system of paid family and medical leave insurance. The system would provide up to 12 weeks of paid leave for employees needed to take leave for themselves or for the care of a family member. The program would provide employees with 60% wage replacement. It would be paid by .5% deduction of an employee’s wage. Employers could decide to deduct all from an employees pay or share the cost in some manner. Employers with 15 or more employees would have to return the worker to their position once they return to work or to a “similar” position.
BANNING CHAINS: On Thursday, February 7 the House Commerce Committee will hear HB 561, which would allow cities and towns to ban “formula businesses.” A formula restaurant business is defined as one that has at least 2 of the following features: a standard menu; a trademark or service mark identifying the business; a standardized interior décor; a standardized color scheme; or standardized uniforms.
Contact the NHLRA with your legislative questions or concerns at 603-228-9585 or firstname.lastname@example.org.