HB1600 (2016) Detail

Prohibiting the possession of a flame thrower.

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AN ACT\tprohibiting the possession of a flame thrower.


SPONSORS:\tRep. Rogers, Merr. 28; Rep. Rollo, Straf. 18; Rep. Horrigan, Straf. 6; Rep. C. Chase, Ches. 8; Rep. Pearson, Ches. 4


COMMITTEE:\tCriminal Justice and Public Safety






\tThis bill prohibits the possession of a flamethrowing device except in certain circumstances.


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Explanation:\tMatter added to current law appears in bold italics.

\t\tMatter removed from current law appears [in brackets and struckthrough.]

\t\tMatter which is either (a) all new or (b) repealed and reenacted appears in regular type.






In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Sixteen


AN ACT\tprohibiting the possession of a flame thrower.


Be it Enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court convened:


\t1  New Subdivision; Flamethrowing Devices.  Amend RSA 159 by inserting after section 26 the following new subdivision:

Flamethrowing Devices

\t159:27  Flamethrowing Devices.

\t\tI.  For the purposes of this section, “flamethrowing device” means any nonstationary and transportable device designed or intended to emit or propel a burning stream of combustible or flammable liquid a distance of at least 10 feet.

\t\tII.  No person shall use or possess a flamethrowing device.  Any person who uses or possesses a flamethrowing device shall be guilty of a class B misdemeanor.

\t\tIII.  This section shall not apply to the sale, purchase, possession, transportation, storage, or use of a flamethrowing device if:

\t\t\t(a)  The person is regularly employed by or a paid officer, employee, or member of a fire department, fire protection district, or firefighting agency of the federal government, the state, a municipality, or other political subdivision of this state;

\t\t\t(b)  The person is on duty and acting within the course and scope of his or her employment;

\t\t\t(c)  The flamethrowing device is used by the fire department, fire protection district, or firefighting agency described in subparagraph (a); and

\t\t\t(d)  The person is using the flamethrowing device in the course of fire suppression.

\t2  Effective Date.  This act shall take effect January 1, 2017.








AN ACT\tprohibiting the possession of a flame thrower.




The Office of Legislative Budget Assistant states this bill, as introduced, may increase state and county expenditures by an indeterminable amount in FY 2017 and each year thereafter.  There will be no fiscal impact on local expenditures or state, county, and local revenue.



The Office of Legislative Budget Assistant tates this bill contains penalties that may have an impact on the New Hampshire judicial and correctional systems, specifically establishing a class B misdemeanor for using or possessing a flame throwing device.  There is no method to determine how many charges would be brought as a result of the changes contained in this bill to determine the fiscal impact on expenditures. However, the Judicial Branch and New Hampshire Association of Counties have provided the Office with potential costs associated with the penalties contained in this bill.  See table below for average cost information:


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FY 2017

FY 2018

Judicial Branch



Class B Misdemeanor






It should be noted average case cost estimates for FY 2017 and FY 2018 are based on data that is more than ten years old and does not reflect changes to the courts over that same period of time or the impact these changes may have on processing the various case types.

NH Association of Counties



County Prosecution Costs



Estimated Average Daily Cost of Incarcerating an Individual

$85 to $110

$85 to $110



The Department of Justice states class B misdemeanor offenses are typically prosecuted by local and county prosecutors, therefore this bill will have no fiscal impact on the Department's expenditures.  The Department would handle any appeals from the newly created offense within their budget.