MANCHESTER, NH  JUNE 24, 2021–Manchester mayoral candidate Richard H. Girard (R-Ward 2), issued the following statement regarding the passage of the state budget and the associated “trailer bill” by the New Hampshire General Court.


“As someone who assembled three budgets as a mayoral assistant, proposed two as and alderman at-Large and worked on four budgets as a member of the school board, including two as Chair of the Subcommittee on Finance, I understand budgeting from both the executive and legislative perspectives.  Finding coming ground amongst competing priorities is always a difficult task.  This is why today’s votes are so impressive, even historic.  Despite being of the same party, Governor Sununu’s priorities weren’t all shared by the House of Representatives or the Senate, each of which had their own priorities.  Despite their differences, they came together around shared goals and figured it out.  And, while no body got everything they wanted and somethings weren’t exactly as they hoped, they were able to enact some amazing fundamental changes on very important topics like:

  • banning late term abortion,
  • providing low and moderate income families with the ability to choose better schools for their children,
  • phasing out New Hampshire’s income tax on dividends and interest,
  • increasing aid to cities and towns,
  • reigning in emergency powers,
  • cutting taxes on businesses and rooms and meals, and
  • banning the use of taxpayer dollars to train pubic employees or teach school children that any race or sex is superior to another

“One thing I want to emphasize is what was done with schools.  In creating my school plan, I anticipated the legislature was going to adopt the Education Freedom Accounts, which allows some parents to use the state’s per pupil education aid for non-public schooling options.  I do believe that many Manchester parents who qualify for this money will accept it so they can send their child(ren) to schools that better suit their needs.  As it is now, the Manchester School District is ill prepared to compete for these students and it will see more students leave.  

“My plan enables, encourages, incentivizes educators, parents, businesses, colleges and non-profit organizations to actually create, from the bottom up, the innovative options that will have people choosing Manchester and its schools, including the more than 3,000 students who now choose something else.  The ‘choice genie’ has been out of the bottle for years and it just got a steroid injection.  Manchester’s schools can compete but the system has to be decentralized and localized to individual schools.  We can effectively compete for those students and the dollars that will come with them.  As mayor, I will be dedicated to strengthening our schools through choice to provide the options our parents want and our students deserve.

“Manchester now has an opportunity to step up and prove itself.  Throughout our history, Manchester has tackled much tougher challenges.  All it takes is the right attitude and leadership to make great things happen.  Because we ‘Believe in Better,’ we’ll get the job done!”

Publisher’s note:  Given the controversy and disinformation surrounding the abortion and anti-discrimination laws that were adopted along with the budget, we have published those sections of HB 2 at Girard At Large and link to them below.

The Fetal Protection Act

The Right to Freedom from Discrimination in Public Work Places and Education Act