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New Hampshire

The Alliance’s lead ally in New Hampshire, New Futures, collects and disseminates critical and reliable state-level data, makes policy recommendations, and provides tools for legislators, public officials, and advocates to advance positive policies for children and families in New Hampshire. The organization trains partners to advocate for strong and proven policies for the future health and prosperity of New Hampshire’s children.

2023 State Early Childhood Policy Environment and Progress

State early childhood policy progress is dependent both on the state’s policy environment and the numerous efforts — by those listed on this page and many others — who worked both independently and collaboratively to achieve wins for young children.

Early Childhood Landscape:

Research shows that family economic security is foundational to children’s overall wellbeing. Research also shows that widespread disparities in opportunity (especially by race) drive wide disparities in outcomes. States with policies that offer strong support to young children and their families are more likely to see 1) declining numbers of children in low-income households and 2) low racial disparity among those children. 

Young Children in Low-Income Households: Declining

Approximately 23% (27,000) of the state’s children 0-8 live in households below 200% of the Federal Poverty Level (2021). This number represents a decrease from 27% (32,000) in 2016.1

Racial Disparity Among Young Children Living in Low-Income Households: High

Black, Hispanic/Latino, and/or Native children aged 0-8 are significantly more likely to be living in households below 200% of the Federal Poverty Level than are Asian and non-Hispanic White children.2

Advocacy Landscape:

State General Fund Appropriations: Growing 

On June 20, New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu signed a biennial budget covering fiscal 2024-2025. The budget provides for appropriations totaling $15.2 billion over two years.3

Largest Per Capita Revenue Sources (after federal transfers) (FY 2021):4

    • Property Taxes: $3,329 per capita
    • Charges: $992 per capita

New Hampshire does not levy a general sales tax or individual income tax. Charges are public payments connected with a specific government service, such as tuition paid to a state university, payments to a public hospital, or highway tolls. 

Political Alignment: Aligned Republican

During the 2023 session, the state’s Senate and House were both Republican controlled. The state’s Governor was also a Republican.5

Types of Common Ballot Measures Available:6  Two

    • Legislature-Initiated Constitutional Amendments – A constitutional amendment that appears on a state’s ballot as a ballot measure because the state legislature in that state voted to put it before the voters.
    • Automatic Ballot Referrals – In New Hampshire, there is one such question, by law, every ten years, the question of whether to hold a constitutional convention.

Early Childhood Policy Advocacy Multi-State Initiatives Include:7

new futures

Early childhood policy advocacy multi-state initiatives present in the state include4:

2022 Policy Progress:

Despite a challenging political landscape, advocates successfully protected critical early childhood funding, prevented harmful legislation, and secured investments in programs which promote child and youth wellbeing.

Highlights from the state’s early childhood policy advocacy community include:8

Child Care for NH Working Families – Advocates backed the Child Care for New Hampshire Working Families Act (SB 237), which takes a two-pronged approach to addressing the crisis: first, it invests $15 million into child care recruitment and retention to address staffing shortages. Second, it expands access to the New Hampshire Child Care Scholarship Program so more families receive direct support.

Momnibus: Extending Medicaid Coverage for New Mothers – SB 175 looked to extend current Medicaid coverage for new moms (60 days) to one year postpartum, which would allow for new mothers to receive postnatal mental health treatment, as well as access to services at family resource centers. In addition to Medicaid provisions, SB 175 includes workplace protections for nursing mothers, creates advisory boards and certification processes for doulas and lactation service providers, and establishes a commission to study universal home visits for newborns and young children, and funds children’s behavioral health services and family resource centers.

Behavioral Health Crisis Services – SB 85 creates a study commission to determine the best source of sustainable funding for behavioral health crisis services in New Hampshire. New Futures supports SB 85 because it takes a step toward establishing sustainable funding for New Hampshire’s behavioral crisis system.  It also limits preauthorization requirements, which is an evidence-based, best-practice intervention that has been demonstrated in national studies to be ultimately cost-saving and achieve better outcomes for children, adults, and families.. 

Children’s System of Care Funding – New Hampshire has made continued and meaningful investments into New Hampshire’s Children’s System of Care since its establishment in 2016. The System of Care provides a comprehensive spectrum of services to Granite State children and families to give children the best chance of success as they grow into the future of our state. The House Finance Division III Committee voted to restore only 60% of the funding requested by the Department of Health and Human Services for New Hampshire’s Children’s System of Care. However, thanks to efforts by advocates, nearly all the funding for the Children’s System of Care was restored in final version of the budget, which was signed into law by Governor Sununu in June. 

VaccinesTwo bills were introduced in the House this session that aimed to undermine our public health infrastructure, but both were ultimately defeated on the House floor. HB 539 would have prohibited schools from conducting a vaccination clinic at any time during school hours or within two hours at the beginning or end of the school day. HB 557 would have transferred oversight and rule-making power from the New Hampshire Department of Health and Humans Services to the New Hampshire Legislature, meaning politicians – not the doctors and epidemiologists that makeup NH DHHS’s Vaccine Selection Committee – would have determined the vaccine schedule and controlled when changes are made to the recommended schedule.


Additionally, advocates continue to work on a Pilot Pre-Kindergarten Program. New Hampshire remains one of the few states that does not have publicly funded pre-kindergarten. A 2023 Senate Bill, SB 214, aimed to leverage existing federal dollars to create a community based, mixed delivery pre-kindergarten pilot program. The bill was retained in committee and will be brought back at the start of 2024 for review. Also throughout the session, New Futures, in collaboration with 80 other partner organizations, tracked SB 263, which called for the permanent reauthorization of Medicaid expansion. SB 263 unanimously passed through the Senate and passed on the House floor, but the bill was re-referred to the House Finance Committee, where they voted to retain the bill. 


Ongoing Grantee Areas of Advocacy:

The Alliance’s lead grantee in New Hampshire, New Futures, is working to advance early childhood policies in several areas that align with the Alliance’s birth-through-eight policy framework

Early Care and Education

Preschool and Pre-K

Child Care

Child Care Workforce

Click here for more information on advocates’ policy agenda.

Child and
Maternal Health

Child Health

Home Visiting

Maternal Health

Early Intervention (0-3)






Early Childhood Infratructure



1 Kids Count Data Center, Annie E. Casey Foundation, Children Ages 0 to 8 Below 200 Percent Poverty, November, 2022 

2 National Center for Children in Poverty, Children Ages 0 to 8 Below 200 Percent Poverty, March 2023, NCCP analysis of ACS 1-Year Estimates – Public Use Microdata Sample 2021

3 National Association of State Budget Officers, Summaries of Fiscal Year 2024 Enacted Budgets, October 11, 2023.

4 Urban Institute, State Fiscal Briefs, July 2023

5 National Conference of State Legislatures, 2023 State & Legislative Partisan Composition, February 28, 2023.

6 Ballotpedia, Ballot Measures by State, Kids Count Data Center, retrieved May, 2023.

7 Alliance for Early Success, Multi-State Initiatives for Early Childhood Policy Advocacy, April, 2022.

8 Alliance for Early Success, State-Wide Advocacy Highlights Survey, April-August, 2023.  

More State Policy Data:

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More State Demographic Data:

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