Home » Opinion » Editorials
Cannon fodder: No free ski passes
As the Josiah Bartlett Center's Grant Bosse first pointed out, Rep. Gary Coulomb, D-Berlin, has filed House Bill 514, which would let legislators accept free Cannon Mountain ski passes from the state parks and recreation director. Cannon is the state-operated ski slope located in Franconia Notch.
Legislative ethics rules bar lawmakers from receiving gifts worth more than $25. Cannon Mountain charges $47 for a half-day lift ticket and $70 for a full day. HB 514 would get around this obstacle by some rather obvious sleight of hand. The bill "exempts the receipt of ski passes for Cannon Mountain ski area by members of the general court from the definition of a gift."
If a ski resort owner gave legislators on key regulatory committees, such as Senate Commerce or House Labor, Industrial and Rehabilitative Services, free lift tickets, it would be an obvious violation of the ethics rules. Under HB 514, the state parks and recreation director could give members of the House and Senate Appropriations Committees free ski passes, and that would be OK - even though those committee members play powerful roles in deciding how much state money Cannon Mountain receives from the taxpayers.
Some legislators say they need to visit Cannon to better understand how it operates. Fine, then arrange with the management for a tour. No legislator needs to ski the mountain for free to understand how it is run any more than a legislator needs to go on food stamps to understand how public assistance works. As Cannon receives direct state appropriations, any offer of free ski passes carries with it a potentially corrupting influence. The gift ban clearly should apply.
READER COMMENTS: 0
- Christmas spirit: Do you have more than a homeless man? - 1
- The Sony hack: Kim's judgment of Obama - 26
- Obama gets smoked: Castros celebrate in Havana - 35
- On naming the victim: It is Kibby's story now - 0
- After Newtown: A gun rights revival - 39
- Vermont's disaster: An Obamedy of errors - 15
- Jeb takes a dip: First Flavor of the Week - 21
- Asking about marriage: The Census should keep doing it - 3
- All lives matter: Even Al Sharpton says so - 14
READER COMMENTS: 0
- Dave D'Onfrio's Patriots Notebook: Finding a way to win - 0
- Sam Asano's Let's Invent: NoNose gets readers talking like nobody's business - 0
- Know the Law: Your trust can be named beneficiary of an IRA - 0
- Another View -- Bill O'Brien: Ask your state rep. to vote for transparency in the House - 0
- Old friends and a 'homeless angel' make for good stories anytime - 0
- Clooney gets it: Sony attack was not a 'crime' - 0
- New coats warm city kids, firefighters' hearts - 0
- NHIAA Roundup: Martin, Pinkerton top Salem in tournament - 0
- Inmate reported missing from Concord transitional unit - 0
The Sony hack: Kim's judgment of Obama
Tensions boil over after NYC police killings
'Everybody was extremely fortunate'