SB 263  - AS INTRODUCED

 

 

2022 SESSION

22-2982

07/08

 

SENATE BILL 263

 

AN ACT establishing the New Hampshire youth environmental education and conservation council.

 

SPONSORS: Sen. Watters, Dist 4; Sen. Perkins Kwoka, Dist 21; Sen. Hennessey, Dist 1; Sen. Sherman, Dist 24; Sen. Kahn, Dist 10; Sen. Whitley, Dist 15; Sen. Prentiss, Dist 5; Sen. Soucy, Dist 18; Rep. Myler, Merr. 10; Rep. Suzanne Smith, Graf. 8

 

COMMITTEE: Energy and Natural Resources

 

-----------------------------------------------------------------

 

ANALYSIS

 

This bill establishes the New Hampshire youth environmental education and conservation council, its membership, and the duties of the council.

 

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

 

Explanation: Matter added to current law appears in bold italics.

Matter removed from current law appears [in brackets and struckthrough.]

Matter which is either (a) all new or (b) repealed and reenacted appears in regular type.

22-2982

07/08

 

STATE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE

 

In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Twenty Two

 

AN ACT establishing the New Hampshire youth environmental education and conservation council.

 

Be it Enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court convened:

 

1  Declaration of Purpose.  New Hampshire youth rely on the benefits of a clean and healthy environment, including clean water, air, renewable energy, open spaces, recreational opportunities, and the economic growth and employment opportunities dependent on such features of New Hampshire's environment.  New Hampshire youth and their families will be affected for decades to come by current and future decision making to conserve natural resources and wildlife, to develop renewable energy, to improve and protect clean water supplies, to prevent pollution, and to prevent and mitigate the effects of climate change, including warming, sea level rise, storm surge, and changing precipitation patterns.  It is essential that New Hampshire youth have opportunities to deliberate on these matters and make recommendations to state policy makers regarding laws, rules, and practices of state agencies and local and state governments.

2  New Chapter; New Hampshire Youth Environmental Education and Conservation Council.  Amend RSA by inserting after chapter 19-P the following new chapter:

CHAPTER 19-Q

NEW HAMPSHIRE YOUTH ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATION AND CONSERVATION COUNCIL

19-Q:1  Council Established.  There is established the New Hampshire youth environmental education and conservation council to advise the speaker of the house of representatives, the president of the senate, the house and senate committees having jurisdiction over education, natural resources, fish and game, energy, and outdoor recreation, and the state board of education.

19-Q:2  Council Membership.  Members of the council shall be between the ages of 12 and 25, shall each serve for a term of 2 years, which may be renewed once and which shall not be affected by change of grade level, and shall be as follows:

I.  One resident of each county who shall be nominated by a parent, teacher, or school administrator and appointed by the chairperson of the county delegation.

II.  Two middle school students who shall be nominated by a parent, teacher, school administrator, or their principals and appointed by the New Hampshire school administrators association.

III.  Two high school students who shall be nominated by their principals, a parent, teacher, or school administrator and appointed by the New Hampshire school administrators association.

IV.  Two college or university students who shall be nominated by the relevant student council, student senate, or other student governing body and appointed by the New Hampshire delegation of the New England Board of Higher Education.

V.  A member of the legislative youth advisory council who shall be appointed by the legislative youth advisory council's chairperson.  

19-Q:3  Duties.  The council shall:

I.  Consider current scientific reports on the conditions and challenges to a clean and healthy environment, including clean water, air, renewable energy, open spaces, recreational opportunities, and on the benefits of environmental education and outdoor recreation to inform students on these matters, and the economic growth and employment opportunities dependent on such features of New Hampshire's environment.

II.  Consult with state agencies, municipal officials, representatives of related policy advocacy groups, business, industry, educational leaders, and scientists.  The council shall make recommendations on policies, laws, and practices to the legislature relative to these matters.

III.  Make recommendations on educational programs, including environmental education and outdoor recreation programs, in schools, directed at youth and their families, concerning New Hampshire's environment and changing climate, land conservation, and the recreational other uses of natural resources.  Make recommendations on current and future legislative and state agency actions arising from council deliberations.

19-Q:4  Reporting Requirements.

I.  The council shall meet quarterly.  Approved minutes shall be submitted to the speaker of the house of representatives, the president of the senate, and the chairpersons of the house and senate standing committees having jurisdiction over climate, energy, conservation, and recreation.

II.  The council shall submit a report of activities and recommendations by June 30 of each year to the speaker of the house of representatives, the president of the senate, and the chairpersons of the house and senate standing committees having jurisdiction over education, natural resources, fish and game, energy, and outdoor recreation, and the state board of education.

III.  The chairpersons of such committees shall provide an opportunity for the council to report in person on its findings and recommendations.

IV.  The first meeting of the council shall be called by the speaker of the house of representatives, or designee.  A chairperson and clerk shall be elected at the first meeting of the council.  A simple majority of council members shall constitute a quorum.  The council may establish committees from its membership for the purpose of examining specific policy issues.

3  Effective Date.  This act shall take effect 60 days after its passage.