In an unprecedented move, the taxi commission for Portsmouth, NH, voted unanimously to ask the City Council to eliminate all taxi medallions and end city inspections and the regulation of taxi fares in order to level the playing field between regulated taxis and Uber rides. Said Lt. Chris Cummings, the Portsmouth Police Department’s liaison with the Taxi Commission: “I guess it’s going to come down to what consumers want to do.” Indeed. Read more at the New York Post, which has dubbed Portsmouth, NH, home of the FSP early mover initiative the FreeCoast, "Uber City." For more coverage, see Seacoast Online. Photo credit: Christopher Sadowski
New Hampshire is known as a libertarian hot spot, and the Bitcoin community here is strong. Read about the rich connections between Bitcoin and the Free State Project here. Now, Republican Representative Eric Schleien has introduced a bill, with bipartisan support, that would mandate the state treasurer to “develop an implementation plan for the state to accept bitcoin as payment for taxes and fees [by 2017]." Read more about the proposed bill at PanAm Post. Full text of bill. Photo credit: Bitcoin Magazine
NH leads the charge again. This time, a new bill that will require state police officers to wear and use cameras during interactions with the public. Says the bill's prime sponsor, Rep. Kyle Tasker: "As much as I like police accountability, this is more about re-establishing that trust. Instead of having a ‘he said, she said’ situation, you have a neutral, very objective witness to what goes on." Read more at the Concord Monitor.
On top of the FSP's Liberty Forum and the Porcupine Freedom Festival, early movers have been organizing their own liberty-oriented events to highlight different regions and approaches to more "Liberty in Our Lifetime." Watch the clip for highlights from the 1st Annual FreeCoast Festival, held in Fall 2014 in Portsmouth and NewMarket, which focused on radical entrepreneurship.
The Porcupine is the FSP's mascot--and liberty lovers within the state of New Hampshire call themselves "Porcs"--because these peaceful creatures just want to be left alone, and, on the flip side, you don't want to mess with them. National Geographic shares some fun fast facts about these fascinating creatures. Read more. Photo credit: HARRISE HARRIS, NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC YOUR SHOT
When life hands you snow... make snowballs! The east coast was recently hit by what was hyped as the Snowpocalypse of 2015. In typcial "have snow, will have fun" fashion, residents of Portsmouth, NH, made the most of the blizzard. The giant snowball fight was promoted through social media, and around 1PM, the melee broke out in the town square. After the fun, participants went to a bar to warm up and share their experiences. Read more at Mail Online. Photo credit: Youtube.
In NH, folks don't just complain about police militarization, they do something about it. Over the past few years, in several towns across the state, concerned NH residents have fought the acquisition of BEARCATS, garnering national and international media attention in the process. Now, once again, NH leads the charge with a bipartisan bill aimed at stopping local police from receiving military grade weapons. Want to be part of the solution? Join the FSP!
In New Hampshire, job prospects look good. In 2014, the unemployment rate dropped to 4%, well below the national average, and more jobs were created in the private sector than in the public sector. Read more at The Union Leader. Interested in moving to NH as part of the Free State Project, but need a job first? Join the FSP Job Alert group on Facebook for tips, job postings, and more. Photo credit: habitatcd.org
From Politico: "With this in mind, Politico Magazine rounded up 14 different state rankings from reputable sources like the Census Bureau, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the FBI, and on important factors such as high school graduation rates, per capita income, life expectancy and crime rate. Then we averaged out each state’s 14 rankings to come up with a master list—atop which sits none other than New Hampshire" (in 2015, sharing this with Minnesota). Read more... Photo credit: Blue Volt CEU
Portsmouth, NH, one of the more left-leaning towns, makes a surprise move, once again proving New Hampshire is in a class of its own when it comes to increasing liberty. The short version: Cabbies complain that Uber is unfair because it doesn't have to follow the same rules they do. So the Portsmouth Taxi Commission votes to eliminate all regulations and disband itself. Check mate, special interests! Where else would this happen? Join the Free State Project, come to Liberty Forum, then move. It's your best chance at "Liberty in Our Lifetime."
Read about the saga at Seacoast Online. Photo credit: AP, taken during Hurricane Sandy in Hoboken.