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Senate Budget Writers Tap Into Renewable Energy Fund After Restoring It

Paige Sutherland for NHPR
Tensions were high among Senate President Chuck Morse and Senator Andrew Hosmer when debating over raiding the state's renewable energy fund.

Senate budget writers are trying to make good on a promise to fully restore dedicated funds aimed to promote renewable energy.

Last week Senate budget writers fully restored the $50 million the House raided from the renewable energy fund but Wednesday voted to redirect $1.5 million towards homeland security.

Democrat Hosmer of Laconia said the move contradicts the Senate’s stated position on dedicated funds.  

“A number of people who suggested this in other areas in the course of this session have been broadly by members of the legislator. How dare they tap into a fund like that? How dare they even discuss it and now we are doing it right here.”

But Senate President Chuck Morse of Salem countered that with limited option -- tapping into the renewable energy fund is reasonable.

“You would like to create a new tax I would suppose but I am not supporting that. I am supporting money the state already has and living within our means. I will not support putting a new tax in place and the only alternative to this block is reducing homeland security.”

The finance committee must send a budget to the full Senate by June 5th

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