N.H. House Kills Wal-Mart Bill

The New Hampshire House soundly rejected a bill Wednesday that would make the state’s largest employers spend 8 percent of their payroll on health insurance.

The House voted 212-128 to kill the proposal aimed at Wal-Mart Stores Inc., several grocery chains, the state’s larger hospitals and major manufacturers.

The bill would have required employers with more than 1,500 workers to spend 8 percent, if a for-profit entity, or 6 percent, if a nonprofit, on employee health care.

If the amount was less, the business or nonprofit would have been required to send the difference to the state to create a health care fund to help pay for care provided the poor.

The bill was modeled after a law that was enacted last month in Maryland.

The New Hampshire Business and Industry Association opposed the bill.