How to register support/opposition on a bill
To sign in to speak on a bill or to register support or opposition, you will utilize the newly created “NH House Remote Sign-In Sheet” located on the general court website available here.
You are encouraged to sign in well in advance of the hearing. If you not wish to speak on a bill or register support or opposition, but wish to view the meeting, you are encouraged to watch via the House of Representatives YouTube channel available here.
A new online form (“NH House Remote Sign-In Sheet”) will allow you to sign in on a bill as soon as it has been scheduled for a hearing:
- Click on the date that the bill you are interested in is being heard.
- Under the drop-down menus:
- Select the committee that is hearing the bill.
- Select the bill you are interested in.
- Select a category (elected official, lobbyist, agency staff, member of the public).
- If you are representing an entity or someone other than yourself, enter that information in the box.
- Indicate whether you support, oppose or are neutral on the bill by checking the appropriate circle.
- If you wish to speak, check that box. Please DO NOT check that box unless you plan to speak. You can register your position on a bill without speaking.
- Click continue.
- Enter your name and contact information.
- Click continue.
- Carefully review that the information you have entered is correct. If it is correct, check the box and click continue. This completes the sign in process.
The sign in list will be compiled for all bills being heard by the committee on a given day 30 minutes prior to the start of the first hearing. If you sign up after that time, the Chair will not have your name before them. Before the Chair closes each hearing, they will ask if there is anyone who hasn’t had the opportunity to speak but wishes to do so. At this time, you can raise your hand to speak, but it is important that you identify yourself for the record.
Written testimony should be submitted to the committee e-mail which will be forwarded to the entire committee. If you have signed up to testify or register your opinion on a bill, the confirmation page will include instructions for submitting testimony. You may also utilize the “Email All Committee Members” link found on the relevant committee web page.
How to testify on Zoom
On the day of the hearing, you can join the Zoom meeting by clicking the link provided in the House Calendar. The Zoom will not begin before the posted start time of the first bill being heard by the committee. Once the Zoom is opened to the public, all attendees will be muted and will not have video capabilities. Only the Zoom panelists (committee members and staff) will have video capabilities. When it is your turn to speak, the Chair will call your name. When your name is called, please “raise your hand” to make it easier to locate your name in the list of attendees.
To raise your hand
- If you are participating by Zoom: click the “raise hand” icon at the bottom of the screen, or press the “Alt” and “Y” keys on your keyboard at the same time.
- If you are participating by telephone: press *9. You will be granted speaking capabilities but please note that you may also need to “unmute” yourself on your own device. When you have completed your testimony, the staff will disable your speaking capabilities. In a busy hearing with many speakers, the Chair may decide to call several names at a time and ask that you virtually raise your hand. Doing so will bump your name to the top of the attendee column and make it easier for the Chair to identify you and grant you speaking capabilities. Even if multiple names are announced and asked to raise their hand, speaking capabilities will still only be enabled one person at a time.
How to submit written testimony
Depending on the number of speakers on a bill, the chair has the discretion to limit individual testimony to a certain number of minutes. The purpose of a hearing is for the committee to take public comment.
The members of the committee may ask questions of those who testify. Therefore, the virtual hand raising feature should be limited to the scenario outlined above, or if a committee member poses a general question to the audience and you are able to provide an answer. To afford everyone the opportunity to speak and to assist the committee in adhering to time constraints, if you realize you forgot to say something after your allotted speaking time, you are encouraged to email the committee.