PRS Students Testify on Minimum Wage Bill

On Tuesday, March 3, 2015, four Dartmouth undergraduates from the Rockefeller Center’s Policy Research Shop (PRS) traveled to Concord, NH to testify before the New Hampshire Senate Finance Committee on SB 261, a bill to raise the minimum wage in New Hampshire above the federal minimum wage standard of $7.25 per hour. The PRS students—Andrew Carothers '17, Sam Libby '17, Joby Bernstein '17, and Gabriel Lopez Low '15—provided an overview of the background and demographics relating to the minimum wage in New Hampshire, an excellent assessment of the extant economic literature on the employment effects of raising the minimum wage, including meta-analyses of economic research on the minimum wage, their own analysis of contiguous county employment data for New Hampshire, Maine, Massachusetts, and Vermont, as well as a stakeholder analysis and assessment of public opinion data in New Hampshire and nationwide on raising the minimum wage.

PRS students Sam Libby '17, Joby Bernstein '17, Andrew Carothers '17, and Gabriel Lopez Low '15 testify before the New Hampshire Senate Finance Committee.

The students then responded to questions from Senator Jeanie Forrester, committee chair, as well as from Senators John Reagan, Lou D’Allesandro, and Gerald Little, Chuck Morse, and Andrew Hosmer. The testimony of the students followed the introduction of the bill by its prime sponsor, Senator Donna Soucy, to the committee. Following the hearing, the students were thanked by Senator Soucy and by Senator David Pierce, a co-sponsor of the bill, for their comprehensive and thoughtful presentation. Eight of the 24 New Hampshire State Senators were present at the hearing, including all of the committee members and two of the bill co-sponsors. Andrew Carothers, Sam Libby, and Joby Bernstein served as Rockefeller Center First-Year Fellows last summer in Washington, DC.

PRS students testify before Senators Andrew Hosmer, Chuck Morse, Jeanie Forrester (chair), Gerald Little (vice-chair), and Lou D’Allesandro. Senator John Reagan (elbow at far right) was also present at the hearing.

PRS students Andrew Carothers, Sam Libby, Joby Bernstein, and Gabriel Lopez Low pose with Senators Donna Soucy and David Pierce, sponsors of SB 261.