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Sununu vetoes bill banning masks in N.H. public schools

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Gov. Chris Sununu has vetoed a bill that would bar local school boards from requiring people to wear masks on the grounds of any public school.

In his veto message, issued late Friday afternoon, Sununu wrote that the state has a responsibility to know the limits of its own power, and that decisions like this are best left to authorities closest to parents and families.

“Just because we may not like a local decision, does not mean we should remove their authority,” Sununu wrote. “Similar to our fight to retain states' rights against a bloated and ever-encroaching federal government, we have a responsibility to ensure the State minimizes its infringement on local control.”

The bill was sponsored by Rep. Ken Weyler, a Republican from Kingston, who lost his post as the House’s top budget-writer last year after clashing with state health officials over COVID policy and sharing a document full of bizarre COVID theories with other lawmakers.

The bill cleared the Legislature narrowly, along near party-lines, making an override of Sununu’s veto all but impossible.

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