THE STATE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE

SUPREME COURT

 

In Case No. 2004-0361, Petition of Senator Clifton Below & a., the court on June 4, 2004, issued the following order:

On May 28, 2004, the court accepted question A in the petition for writ of certiorari filed by the petitioners. Because of the imminence of the June 2, 2004 filing period for house and senate candidates, the court enjoined that period pending further court order. The court modified this injunction on June 1, 2004, by lifting the stay of the statutory filing period for senate candidates for senate districts 1, 3, 4, 6, 10, 14, 16, and 17-24. Because the court could not determine which additional house districts the plaintiffs alleged were affected by HB 1292, it continued to enjoin the statutory filing period for all house districts until further court order.

On June 1, 2004, the respondent, the New Hampshire Secretary of State, filed a motion to lift the court’s injunction. On June 2, 2004, the respondent also moved for reconsideration of the court’s June 1 order. Additionally, on June 2, 2004, the parties jointly filed an agreed-upon statement of how the 2002 house districts correlate to the house districts created by HB 1292.

In his motion for reconsideration, the respondent asserted that the agreed-upon statement was "intended to clarify for the Court how the ‘additional house districts’ cited by the Plaintiffs relate to the new districts." The respondent stated that "[e]ven if the Court rules that the injunction should continue to apply to House and Senate Districts affected by the restructuring, the current scope of the injunction is overbroad because it includes 80 cities, towns and wards that the Court . . . previously deemed to pass constitutional . . . muster." Accordingly, the respondent asks that the injunction "be appropriately lifted so that the electoral process can proceed on schedule." The court infers that by asking it to lift the stay, the respondent has represented that doing so will not disrupt the electoral process and that he is prepared to deal with any unexpected consequences that may follow therefrom.

The court now rules upon the respondent’s June 1 and June 2 motions as follows. To the extent that these motions concern questions B through F in the petition, the court denies them without prejudice because they are premature. The court has not yet decided whether to accept these questions. To the extent that these motions concern the injunction the court entered while exercising its original jurisdiction over question A in the petition, the court grants these motions in part and denies them in part.

The court hereby lifts the stay of the statutory filing period for house candidates for house districts identified below. The court hereby orders that the filing period provided in RSA 655:14 (1996) for the purposes of the 2004 house election shall be between the second Wednesday in June (June 9, 2004) and the Friday of the following week (June 18, 2004) for candidates in the following house districts:

2002 Court Numbering Scheme HB 1292 Numbering Scheme
District 1 Coos 1
District 4 Carroll 1
District 5 Carroll 2
District 6 Carroll 3
District 7 Carroll 4
District 8 Carroll 5
District 9 Grafton 1
District 10 Grafton 2
District 25 Cheshire 3
District 41 Merrimack 13
District 51 Hillsborough 11
District 52 Hillsborough 12
District 53 Hillsborough 14
District 54 Hillsborough 13
District 55 Hillsborough 16
District 56 Hillsborough 15
District 68 Strafford 3
District 69 Strafford 6
District 70 Strafford 4
District 71 Strafford 5
District 72 Strafford 7
District 73 Rockingham 1
District 74 Rockingham 2
District 75 Rockingham 3
District 76 Rockingham 4
District 77 Rockingham 5
District 78 Rockingham 6
District 81 Rockingham 11
District 82 Rockingham 12
District 83 Rockingham 13
District 84 Rockingham 14
District 85 Rockingham 15
District 86 Rockingham 16
District 87 Rockingham 17
District 88 Rockingham 18

It is not the intent of this order to otherwise alter the provisions of RSA chapter 655.

Broderick, C.J., and Nadeau, Dalianis, Duggan, and Galway, JJ., concurred.

 

Eileen Fox,

Clerk