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RELEASE: Senate Vote to Mandate Biweekly Payment to Employees Creates Financial Burden for Working People

CONCORD – Senator Dan Feltes (D-Concord) and Senator Martha Fuller Clark (D-Portsmouth) issued the following comments after the Senate voted to pass HB 194, legislation to permit employers to pay wages on a weekly or biweekly schedule, along party lines. Senate Democrats opposed the bill on the premise that the legislation places an undue financial burden on hourly wage earners.

“HB 194 is a needless measure that once again illustrates that our Republican friends in the majority are not in touch with the realities of everyday people in New Hampshire: not only are unemployed Granite Staters delayed in their ability to collect unemployment insurance when they find themselves suddenly out of work, they then are unable to collect a paycheck for two weeks when they return to the workforce,” said Senator Feltes. “Many working families live paycheck to paycheck, paying weekly rent and weekly bills. These votes are bad for working families and bad for our economy.”

The vote on HB 194 comes after a measure to eliminate the waiting week from the unemployment insurance filing process was defeated earlier in the legislative session. The bill would have provided relief for unemployed people struggling to pay rent and bills after sudden job loss.

“Making all workers, including hourly workers, wait to be paid every two weeks, rather than every week, while bills pile up and emergency needs cannot be met in a timely manner, places an additional hardship on struggling workers and their families,” said Senator Fuller Clark. “Republicans continue to pursue an agenda that prioritizes massive tax breaks for corporations and the wealthiest in our state. Working families in our state deserve better than what they’re getting from this legislature.”