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Judge Clears Way For One More Hearing In N.H. Democrats' COVID-19 Spending Suit


Democratic state lawmakers will get another hearing in a lawsuit over Gov. Chris Sununu’s authority to distribute federal coronavirus aid.

The complaint dates to mid-April. It argues that the legislature should get a say in Sununu's spending during the state of emergency.  

Superior Court Judge David Anderson previously denied the lawmakers’ request for an emergency injunction to stop that spending.

That didn't change in Anderson's latest order. But he now says the legislature’s fiscal committee has legal standing to keep pursuing the case.

It means the Democrats will get another day in court sometime soon before a final ruling is issued.

Governor Chris Sununu thanked Anderson for his new order in a statement: "In this unprecedented public health emergency, we will continue our work to get relief to New Hampshire families fast," Sununu says.

Meanwhile, the lawmakers behind the suit issued a release reiterating their concerns about transparency in Sununu's coronavirus aid allocations. 

"We look forward to our continued work with the court as we fulfill our constitutional duty to guarantee Granite Staters have consistent access to a transparent process of how their hard-earned money is spent," they said in a statement. 

Annie has covered the environment, energy, climate change and the Seacoast region for NHPR since 2017. She leads the newsroom's climate reporting project, By Degrees.
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