New Hampshire’s Executive Council is unique — which contributes to the fact that less than 1/3 of all Granite Staters even know about it. Here’s a little cheat sheet to help explain what the Executive Council is:
6 Things to Know About New Hampshire’s Executive Council
- NH is the only state with a Council like this one
- It’s made up of 5 Councilors/Districts (We’re District 2!)
- It advises on statewide plans like the 10-Year Infrastructure Plan
- It approves judgeships & agency and commission appointments
- It approves all contracts over $10,000
- It acts as a direct check on the Governor, so NH’s Executive Branch power is not consolidated into one pen
In recent years, Governor Sununu has become notorious for wielding his veto pen a record number of times — this is but one reason having oversight in the Executive Council is so critical. The Executive Council was created to limit the power of the NH Governor, making sure he has the votes of a majority of the five-person elected body before he can appoint judges or major heads of agencies and commissions. The Executive Council must also approve, by majority, all contracts over $10,000 — notably, the Planned Parenthood contract has been on the chopping block many times in recent years, making a potential Executive Councilor’s stance on reproductive rights and justice a key consideration for voters. Emmett has been very vocal on his support for reproductive justice and for Planned Parenthood, and has made it a key issue in his platform for Executive Council.
Cool — but I want to know more!
Ah, a #ProudTownie who wants to dive deeper! Great! Here are some links to get to know the Executive Council better:
- Official website of the NH Executive Council: https://www.nh.gov/council/
- What is the NH Executive Council? by Tracy Hahn-Burkett, Bow (Published 6/21/20, Concord Monitor)
- Civics 101 podcast episode on the NH Executive Council: https://www.civics101podcast.org/civics-101-nh-episodes/ep13