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N.H. House Passes Bill That Would Create State Demographer Job

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

A bill that would create a position for a state demographer passed the N.H. House today.


House Bill 1817 would require the person who gets the job to work closely with U.S. Census data and compile projections on things like how diverse the state is and how it's aging.


Representative Erin Hennessey is the bill’s prime sponsor. She says it also calls for a commission made up of legislators and Granite Staters with demographic expertise.


“And what they’re gonna be doing is -- in conjunction with the state demographer -- looking at what the population shifts are going to be,” Hennessey says. “And what legislation or policy or even just education should go out to New Hampshire.”


Hennessey wants the state to make space for a younger population, which she says means jobs, affordable housing and good schools.


“Because we have a silver tsunami right now, we’re going to be needing a lot more younger people to go into the healthcare field,” Hennessy says. “This would really allow us as legislators to see and to even educate other individuals to figure out where the gaps are going to be and what we need to encourage people to do.”


Studies show New Hampshire’s population is rapidly aging and working-age adults are becoming harder to find.


The state demographer bill now heads to the Senate.


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