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Expansion of N.H.'s Education Tax Credit Program One Step Closer to Reality

N.H. State House
Allegra Boverman for NHPR

A bill that would expand the state’s only school choice program is one step closer to becoming law.

Under the existing education tax credit program, businesses in New Hampshire can get a tax break when they donate to scholarships.

Families who qualify for those scholarships can use them for things like private school tuition, college courses, and homeschooling expenses.

House Bill 1686 would expand the program to allow individuals who pay the interest and dividends tax to donate and then receive a tax credit.

Republican Senator Andy Sanborn says the bill will increase the number of scholarships available to families looking for educational opportunities outside of the public school system.

“To make sure that they can get a good education, to make sure they can find that place where their square meets the square peg in the hole,” said Sanborn.

Opponents of the measure, including Democratic Senator Dan Feltes, raised concerns about the bill's impact on state tax revenues.

"There is no offset in the general fund for this -- none," said Feltes. "Where is the fiscal responsibility in this? I don't think it's here."

The bill was approved by the Senate on a 13-10 vote. It next heads to the Senate Finance Committee.

Jason Moon is a senior reporter and producer on the Document team. He has created longform narrative podcast series on topics ranging from unsolved murders, to presidential elections, to secret lists of police officers.
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