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Tourism is New Hampshire’s second-largest industry–if you combine the state’s smart manufacturing and high technology sectors (SMHT). It’s also a clear point of intersection between government and industry, with the state maintaining a number of parks, campgrounds, and historical sites, and nearby businesses in turn catering to visitors’ needs. Given this close relationship, the state provides funding to market New Hampshire to potential tourists. Some of the heaviest marketing efforts are concentrated in Boston, Philadelphia and New York City. Canadian tourists, especially Quebeçois, also make up a sizable number of New Hampshire’s visitors. From the business perspective, “tourism” is a broad term. It encompasses hotels, resorts, restaurants, retail, and arts and entertainment, among other things. So while statewide reports may indicate overall restaurant or retail sales are up or down, the story might be very different in New Hampshire’s main tourism communities. For these places, weather, gas prices, currency exchange rates, and whether they draw visitors for outdoor activities, site-seeing, or shopping could all be factors.Summary provided by StateImpact NH

Should School Start After Labor Day? Educators and Businesses Disagree

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A group convened by the Governor to study whether schools should start after Labor Day says that despite concerns from educators, establishing a uniform school start date in September is feasible and would boost the state's economy.

(Scroll down to read the commission's full report)

Currently, school years are required to have 180 school days, but the start date is determined by individual school boards in collaboration with the teachers unions. About 85 percent of New Hampshire school districts start after Labor Day.

In August, Governor Chris Sununu issued an executive order establishing a "Save our Summers Commission" to study the issue.

Reprentatives to the commission from the education field said pushing school start dates after Labor Day would not improve educational outcomes, but would mean more school in June (an estimated three days), schedule conflicts with Tech schools and schools in neighboring states, and complications with contract negotiations.

But the business representatives to the commission say there’s a big economic benefit to starting after labor day.

They attribute a dip in tourism dollars at the end of August to the start of school, when high schoolers leave seasonal jobs and families end vacations.

They estimate tourism dollars would increase by between $14-20 million if the state’s schools started after Labor Day.

The NH Farm Bureau Federation also supported a later school start date.

Governor Sununu praised the report, saying it will “serve as a roadmap for policymakers” in the new year.

 

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