Three Lakes-Related Bills, Three Hearings This Week

Freedom—January 7, 2024—Hearings on three bills to improve the protection of state waterbodies will take place this week, according to Concord-based advocacy group NH LAKES.

First up, on Monday, January 8, is HB 1293, which would establish that fertilizer containing phosphorus may only be purchased at retail stores to establish new laws, or repair existing lawns, or to address a phosphorus deficiency as measured by a soil test.

In a news release, NH LAKES said it supports the bill because phosphorus runoff degrades water quality and is a leading contributor to cyanobacteria blooms. The bill will be heard by the House Environment and Agriculture Committee.

On Tuesday, January 9, the House Transportation Committee will conduct a hearing on HB 1304. The bill would require issuance and display of a decal indicating a payment of boat fees in addition to the standard boat registration decal.

NH LAKES said HB 1304 is needed for the state to comply with federal law. The group said the bill will prevent Marine Patrol from losing federal funding, and will sustain the state’s ability to collect fees for invasive species control and prevention.

Wednesday, January 10, will see a hearing on HB 1301 conducted by the House Resources, Recreation and Development Committee. The bill would allow a group of 25 or more residents or property owners on state waterbodies to petition the Department of Safety to prohibit or restrict wake surfing.

Wake surfing produces waves larger than traditional boating activities, potentially eroding the shoreline and disturbing bird nesting and fish habitats, especially in narrow bodies of water.

The public can comment on these bills by accessing this link and filling out the form, which will allow you to make comments or submit a letter as an attachment.

The following is for those wishing to attend the headings:

HB 1293 Hearing Information:

  • Date: Monday, January 8, 2024
  • Time: 10:00 a.m.
  • Committee: House Environment and Agriculture
  • Location: Rooms 301 – 303, Legislative Office Building, Concord, New Hampshire

HB 1304 Hearing Information:

  • Date: Tuesday, January 9, 2024
  • Time: 1:00 p.m.
  • Committee: House Transportation
  • Location: Room 203, Legislative Office Building, Concord, New Hampshire

HB 1301 Hearing Information:

  • Date: Wednesday, January 10, 2024
  • Time: 10:00 a.m.
  • Committee: House Resources, Recreation and Development
  • Location: Room 305, Legislative Office Building, Concord, New Hampshire

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