New Hampshire Today: Interview with Congressman Chris Pappas 3-24-21

In an interview with Chris Ryan, the Representative from New Hampshire’s First Congressional District, Chris Pappas, reacts to the recent mass shooting attacks in Georgia and Colorado by calling for tighter gun control legislation, speculates on how our state and local governments will use the funds which will be coming from the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan, and outlines what might be included in the infrastructure bill which is being discussed in Congress.

Congressman Pappas calls for action at the state and federal level to tighten the loopholes which make it possible to get guns into the hands of people who shouldn’t have access to weapons. The Congressman favors tighter background checks, especially for gun shows and on-line purchases; increased support for law enforcement; and financial backing for our mental health systems in order to meet the needs of our communities.

The State of New Hampshire will receive $900 million, the City of Manchester will get $30 million, and $200 million will go to school districts across the state from the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan.

Congressman Pappas says that the Congressional lawmakers wanted to let state and local governments have the flexibility in the use of these funds. As the state and local governments are making their budgets, they can decide to use the Rescue Plan money to support local services and prevent job cuts, to continue to fight against the COVID pandemic, or to invest in capital improvement projects, like improved broadband access.

In the final segment of the interview, Congressman Pappas shared his thoughts about the scope of the $3 trillion infrastructure bill which is now being considered. Instead of a year-to-year formula, this will be a five-year spending plan which will allow states to do long term planning. Our highway system would be upgraded in a clean and green way, and it will have sustainable funding. We won’t be putting it on the credit card.