Continuing Support for NH-House Bill 1614


Rachel West from Us Pros, Phoebe from All Women Count in  Philly, and Bella Robinson from CoyoteRI all attended the committee hearings on House Bill 1614.   CoyoteRI Press release supporting HB1614

Here is the video of hearing Press Conference and complete committee hearing on NH #HB1614  The actual text of the bill is at the bottom of this document


Enclosed below is list of who New Hampshire legislators that supports HB 1614 and who opposes it.  We need all our community including our allies to reach out to educate these committee members with letters stating your support of HB1614, including the ones that oppose us.  As you can see from the notes beside each of the committee members below, they have different individual concerns.  If would be helpful to them if they can have their specific concerns addressed from our community.  There are many in our community who have expertise on these respective concerns.  It’s okay to  just pick one or two that resonate with you and give your expertise to the committee member(s) who are asking for more information. Please be sure to include a copy of your response to Bella Robinson <>


Thank You in Advance

House Criminal Justice and Safety committee members:


Dick Marston, Republican. “This bill can’t be supported by women because my
wife would hate this bill.” He’s against us and there will be no changing
his mind.

Dick Marston (r),


Robert “Renny” Cushing, Democrat. Probably with us, but has unanswered

Robert Cushing (d),


Robert Fesh, Republican. Probably against us, but he didn’t say much.

Robert Fesh (r),


John Burt. Republican but does not care what his majority leader says. Very
libertarian, almost certainly with us. I will make sure.

John Burt (r),


Len DiSesa, Democrat. Former Chief of Police. He is probably against us,
but is capable of changing his mind with a lot of work. He started out
against the 911 immunity (good Samaritan) bill last year but eventually
changed his mind.

Len DiSesa (d),


John Martin, Republican. 21 years as a corrections officer, probably
against us.

John Martin (r),


David Welch, Republican, Vice Chair. He served as the chair on Thursday
since John Tholl was gone until the very end of the HB 1613 hearing. As a
member of the leadership team, he is under an extra amount of pressure to
go along with the Majority Whip. He’s the reason the marijuana decrim bill
was amended, because he wouldn’t have gone along with half an ounce, but he
went along with 1/4 of an ounce, so he’s not as bad as some Republicans.

Dennis Fields, Republican, Clerk. Send him any written testimony if you
haven’t yet. He is most likely against us.

Dennis Green (r),


Geoffrey Hirsch, Democrat. He is probably with us, but we need to make
sure. He asked the question about “what would have happened in that
scenario (where the woman was kidnapped and coerced) if it had been

Geoffrey Hirsch (d),


Arther Barnes, Republican. I don’t remember him asking any questions.

Arthur Barnes (r),


Ed Comeau, Republican. Like Burt, very libertarian, doesn’t do what
leadership tells him to do. 99.9% sure he’s with us.

Ed Corneau (r),


Roger Berube, Republican. Former Navy, probably against us, thinks
prostitutes carry disease. He said during the marijuana decrim executive
session that it would send the wrong message to children.

Roger Benrube (d),


Latha Mangipudi, Democrat. She missed the session on HB 1614 but saw most
of 1613. This woman needs data. She is a fierce advocate for abortion
rights. She is worried about the overlap between trafficking and
prostitution. She can be swayed to our side.

Latha Manjipudi (d),


Timothy Robertson, Democrat. Almost certainly with us

Timothy Robertson (d),




Laura Pantelakos, Democrat. I guess there’s a slim chance that she could
support us, but it’s pretty slim. I should have made it clear at the
hearing that zoning and planning boards would be able to write rules about
brothels just like they make rules about any other business.

Laura Pantelakos (d),


John Tholl, the normal chair, came in at the tail end of 1613. As a member
of the leadership team, he’s basically required to fall in line with what
the Majority Whip says to do, and as a retired police sergeant and Air
Force, I doubt he’d be with us anyway. However! There is a big difference
between him being strongly against us and weakly against us. If he is
strongly against us, he will pressure the other Republicans on the
committee to vote against us for the committee vote and he may speak
against the bill on the house floor when it comes to a full vote. If he is
only weakly against us, then he won’t do those things. So it is worth
reaching out to him!

Members of the committee who were not present:
Shawn Sweeney, Republican, rarely attends committee.

Shawn Sweeney (r),


Robert Fisher, Republican, rarely attends committee, but would probably
vote with us if he were by some miracle present when they exec the bill. If
only I knew when that would be so I could ask him to be there.

Robert Fisher (r),


Dennis Green, Republican, occasionally attends committee.

Andrew O’Hearne, Democrat. Current police officer, rarely attends
committee. He sits right next to me in Representatives’ Hall, but we don’t
talk much.

Andrew OHearne (d),


Harold Parker, Republican, rarely attends committee.

Harold Parker (r),



Links to contact committee


Tex of the Bill before the New Hampshire State Legislator 2016 HOUSE BILL    1614-FN


2016 SESSION  16-264    04/09   HOUSE BILL    1614-FN

AN ACT    relative to the criminal penalty for prostitution.

SPONSORS:    Rep. Edwards, Hills. 11; Rep. Bouldin, Hills. 12; Rep. C. McGuire, Merr. 29

COMMITTEE:    Criminal Justice and Public Safety



    This bill legalizes consensual sex between consenting adults and makes any solicitation of sexual  contact involving a person under 18 years of age or through the use of force or intimidation a felony.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

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.




In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Sixteen

AN ACT    relative to the criminal penalty for prostitution.

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

    1  Prostitution and Related Offenses.  Amend RSA 645:2 to read as follows:

    645:2  Prostitution and Related Offenses.

  1.  [A person is guilty of a misdemeanor if the person:

            (a)  Solicits, agrees to perform, or engages in sexual contact as defined in RSA 632-A:1, IV or sexual penetration as defined in RSA 632-A:1, V, in return for consideration; or

            (b)  Induces or otherwise purposely causes another to violate subparagraph (a); or

            (c)  Transports another into or within this state with the purpose of promoting or facilitating such other in engaging in conduct in violation of subparagraph (a); or

            (d)  Not being a legal dependent incapable of self support, knowingly is supported in whole or in part by the proceeds of violation of subparagraph (a); or

            (e)  Knowingly permits a place under such person’s control to be used for violation of subparagraph (a); or

            (f) Pays, agrees to pay, or offers to pay another person to engage in sexual contact as defined in RSA 632-A:1, IV or sexual penetration as defined in RSA 632-A:1, V, with the payor or with another person.

        II.]  A person is guilty of a class B felony if such person [violates the provisions of subparagraphs (b), (c), (d), or (e) of paragraph I] solicits, agrees to perform, or engages in sexual contact as defined in RSA 632-A:1, IV or sexual penetration as defined in RSA 632-A:1, V in return for consideration, and the violation:

            (a)  Involves another person who is under the age of 18; or

            (b)  Involved compelling another person by force or intimidation.

        [III.] II. A person is guilty under this section regardless of the sex of the persons involved.

        [IV.] III. It shall be an affirmative defense to a charge under [subparagraph I(a)] paragraph I that the defendant engaged in the conduct because he or she was the victim of trafficking in persons, as defined in RSA 633:7.

        [ V.] IV.  A person under 18 years of age shall not be subject to a juvenile delinquency proceeding under RSA 169-B or criminal prosecution for the commission of an offense under [subparagraph I(a)] paragraph I.

    2  Effective Date.  This act shall take effect January 1, 2017.





AN ACT    relative to the criminal penalty for prostitution.


The Judicial Branch, Department of Corrections, New Hampshire Association of Counties and New Hampshire Municipal Association state this bill, as introduced, will have an indeterminable fiscal impact on state, county and local expenditures in FY 2017 and each year thereafter.  There is no fiscal impact on state, county and local revenue.


The Judicial Branch states this bill makes changes to the criminal penalty for prostitution by removing the unspecified misdemeanor (which can be either class A misdemeanor or class B misdemeanor, with the presumption being a class B misdemeanor) for engaging in prostitution among consenting adults and makes it a class B felony to solicit, agree to perform, or engage in sexual penetration in return for consideration with a person under the age of 18 or involving compelling another person by force or intimidation.  The Branch states the net effect of the proposed bill will be to eliminate a number of unspecified misdemeanors prosecuted under RSA 645:2, I but potentially increase or decrease the number of felony prosecutions.  The Branch  is not able to estimate the fiscal impact of this bill as it has no information to determine how many misdemeanor charges will not be brought or the number of felony B charges that may or may not be brought.

The Judicial Council states that the decrease in misdemeanors cases will be offset by the increase in felony cases, therefore the Council anticipates this bill will have no impact on its expenditures.

The Judicial Branch, Department of Corrections, Judicial Council and New Hampshire Association of Counties have provided the Office of Legislative Budget Assistant with potential costs associated with the penalties contained in this bill.    See table below for average cost information:

FY 2017 FY 2018
Judicial Branch
Class B Misdemeanor $50 $53
Class A Misdemeanor $70 $74
Routine Criminal Felony Case $449 $470
Appeals Varies Varies
It should be noted average case cost estimates for FY 2017 and FY 2018 are based on data that is more than ten years old and does not reflect changes to the courts over that same period of time or the impact these changes may have on processing the various case types.
Judicial Council
Public Defender Program Has contract with State to provide services. Has contract with State to provide services.
Contract Attorney – Felony $756/Case $756/Case
Contract Attorney – Misdemeanor $275/Case $275/Case
Assigned Counsel – Felony $60/Hour up to $4,100 $60/Hour up to $4,100
Assigned Counsel – Misdemeanor $60/Hour up to $1,400 $60/Hour up to $1,400
It should be noted that a person needs to be found indigent and have the potential of being incarcerated to be eligible for indigent defense services. The majority of indigent cases (approximately 85%) are handled by the public defender program, with the remaining cases going to contract attorneys (14%) or assigned counsel (1%).
Department of Corrections
FY 2015 Average Cost of Incarcerating an Individual $34,336 $34,336
FY 2015 Average Cost of Supervising an Individual on Parole/Probation $520 $520
NH Association of Counties
County Prosecution Costs Indeterminable Indeterminable
Estimated Average Daily Cost of Incarcerating an Individual $85 to $110 $85 to $110


The New Hampshire Municipal Association states the legalizing prostitution when the participants are consenting adults may result in a decrease in local expenditures if law enforcement expenditures decrease.  The Association is not able to predict or estimate any potential reduction in expenditures.

The Department of Justice states these types of offenses are prosecuted by local and county prosecutors and would not impact the Department.  The Department would handle any appeals for a conviction related to the offense contained in this bill and absorb the cost within its existing budget.