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Policy Research Shop Support for the Policy Research Shop is provided by the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education, U.S. Department of Education.

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Presentation on theme: "Policy Research Shop Support for the Policy Research Shop is provided by the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education, U.S. Department of Education."— Presentation transcript:

1 Policy Research Shop Support for the Policy Research Shop is provided by the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education, U.S. Department of Education. Policy Research Shop Revising Trade and Commerce Statutes: Sale of Specific Items A Study of New Hampshire’s RSA Chapter 339 The contents of this report were developed under grant P116B from the U.S. Department of Education. However, these contents do not necessarily represent the policy of the U.S. Department of Education, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal Government. Prepared for the Commerce and Consumer Affairs Committee by Carolyn Gaut, Sasha Dudding, and Hugh Danilack

2 Policy Research Shop Project Overview Goal: To identify statutes in New Hampshire RSA Chapter 339 (Sales of Certain Articles) that are no longer relevant for New Hampshire trade and commerce Methodology – Identified three categories – Developed a codebook – Subjected each statute to a series of questions Findings – Identified statutes that are still relevant – Identified statutes that are legally or empirically irrelevant Broader implications

3 Policy Research Shop Trade and Commerce Chapter 339: Sales of Certain Articles Passed statutes currently, 24 have been repealed – Statutes written and repealed by legislators – Statutes enforced by state agencies Passed and Repealed Statutes

4 Policy Research Shop Methodology for Evaluating Statutes Codebook criteria – Origin of statute – General Regulation – Federal Regulation – State Regulation Repealed statutes Inter-coder reliability checks

5 Policy Research Shop

6 Statute Categories Still Relevant – Reason for passage still exists – No other state or federal law on the subject – Complementary Empirically Irrelevant – Reason for passage no longer exists Legally Irrelevant – Federal or state law supersedes

7 Policy Research Shop Still Relevant

8 Policy Research Shop Empirically Irrelevant 339:1-2 Sales Tickets – Passed in 1903 for milk and bread delivery sanitation reasons – Milk and bread delivery no longer common

9 Policy Research Shop Empirically Irrelevant 339:19-21 Raw Cotton – Passed 1870, during Industrial Revolution – Regulates the sale and purchase of raw or unmanufactured cotton, especially as related to weighing it – Example: Manchester built around textile mills, last yard of cotton in Manchester woven 1975

10 Policy Research Shop Empirically Irrelevant 339:22-24 Petroleum, Naphtha, and Illuminating Oils- Inspectors – Passed 1873, system for petroleum inspectors – Never implemented: 1885 Department of Health report found 5 inspectors in the state, and calls the law a “dead letter” – Fuel safety and quality still important, consider replacement inspection system

11 Policy Research Shop Empirically Irrelevant 339:22-24 Petroleum, Naphtha, and Illuminating Oils- Inspectors – National Institute of Standards and Technology and the National Conference on Weights and Measures: “Uniform Engine Fuels and Automotive Lubricants Inspection Law” – Designed to achieve uniform regulation, modifiable by states that adopt it – Many states use this, New Hampshire uses NIST standards in packaging and labeling

12 Policy Research Shop Legally Irrelevant 339:14-15 Leather – Passed in 1871; Craftsman could stamp as guarantee of quality – Superseded by 1979 Federal Guides for Select Leather and Imitation Leather Products – Enforced by the Federal Trade Commission

13 Policy Research Shop Legally Irrelevant 339:31-34 Goods Marked “Sterling,” Etc. – Passed 1895, making New Hampshire one of the first states to regulate this – Goods labeled as sterling silver must contain 92.5 percent pure silver – Made irrelevant by National Stamping Act (1906) – Currently enforced by Federal Trade Commission

14 Policy Research Shop Legally Irrelevant 339:45-46 Fabrics, Etc., Containing Arsenic – Passed in 1901 and bans the sale or exchange of any fabrics or paper that contain arsenic – Superseded by Toxic Substances Control Act (1976) – EPA has banned arsenic in all household products and it is no longer produced in the United States

15 Policy Research Shop Legally Irrelevant 339:47-50 Wood Alcohol, Etc. – Passed in 1915 and prohibits the sale of any substance for human use that contains wood alcohol or methyl alcohol – Superseded by: Toxic Substances Control Act (1976), Federal Alcohol Administration Act (1935), and Federal Hazardous Substances Labeling Act (1960) – Stricter and more comprehensive regulation

16 Policy Research Shop Broader Implications Important to make sure rules and regulations are up to date – Need to assess statutes regularly – Maintain coherence and legitimacy of New Hampshire RSA Methodology could be applied to assess relevance of statutes in other chapters

17 Policy Research Shop Breakdown of Specific Statutes

18 Policy Research Shop


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