Release: On Heroin Crisis, It's a Tale of Two Governors
MANCHESTER - Governor Maggie Hassan plans to ask legislators today to call for a special session on November 18th to approve $11.1 million in new programs to combat the state's heroin epidemic.
In response to her expected request of the Legislature, State Senate President Chuck Morse, R-Salem told the New Hampshire Union Leader yesterday that much of what the governor wants should go through the legislative process allowing public hearings and input from stakeholders. State House Speaker Shawn Jasper, R-Hudson, told the newspaper that "under normal circumstances for a special session, there has been consensus of the governor and the Legislature as to what the solution to a problem is ... we have certainly not arrived at that point."
Governor Hassan's call for a special session comes on the heels of two scathing editorials in recent days from the New Hampshire Union Leader:
The first editorial, which was titled Hassan in hurry: Rushed response after months of delay, highlighted the ironic juxtaposition between Governor Hassan's current rushed reaction to the heroin epidemic, and the months of inaction over the summer due to her budget veto.
Citizens for a Strong New Hampshire launched an effective state-wide television and digital campaign this past September that informed Granite Staters of the detrimental impact Governor Hassan's veto was having on the state's ability to combat drug abuse.
In the second editorial titled Hacky Hassan exploiting drug crisis for headlines, the newspaper poignantly stated, "Governor Maggie Hassan isn't serious about fighting New Hampshire's heroin epidemic. If she were, she would be working with law enforcement and lawmakers to craft a response."
Derek Dufresne of Citizens for a Strong New Hampshire said, "when looking at Maggie Hassan's responses to the state's growing heroin epidemic, it truly is a tale of two governors.
Dufresne continued, "over the summer, Granite Staters unfortunately suffered under the unresponsive Governor Hassan. This apathetic individual was willing to use her budget veto to hold up a 75% increase in funding to combat drug abuse simply to advance her liberal agenda. Now that she has made her political intentions clear, New Hampshire is forced to suffer under the rushed Governor Hassan. This frantic chief executive is exploiting the problem with no consensus or bipartisan plan to truly fight the epidemic.
"The sad reality is that neither the apathetic summer version of Maggie Hassan nor the rushed fall version of Maggie Hassan understands the concept of leadership, which unfortunately hurts New Hampshire families."