Councilor Janet Stevens
In 2020, Executive Councilor Janet Stevens of Rye made history when she was elected to the New Hampshire Executive Council and became the second Republican woman and fifth overall since 1913. Representing the 266,000 constituents of District Three's 32 towns and cities, Councilor Stevens was re-elected in 2022.
Councilor Stevens has a long history of public service and is known for her tireless commitment to bringing accountability to state contracts and agencies, transparency to the process, and fighting for the best interests of her constituents.
In 2022, Executive Councilor Stevens analyzed over 2,200 contracts and approved several billion dollars of state and federal contracts, including more than $1.37 billion dollars for New Hampshire's Medicaid Care Management program. As part of this process, she advocated and supported 388 contracts worth $430.4 million dollars, which were successfully awarded to local government, non-profit organizations, and businesses within District Three's 32 towns and cities which benefited her 266,000 constituents.
The Executive Councilor has demonstrated a strong commitment to her constituents, as evidenced by her 2022 Annual Report and prior year's report. She has made notable progress in several important areas, including water infrastructure, transportation, school safety, housing, and energy needs.
The Executive Councilor made a promise to her constituents to fight for consistent access to clean water and much-needed upgrades to the municipal water system. Her efforts have paid off, as District Three has received over $67.8 million dollars in grants and low-interest loans to ensure that residents have access to clean, reliable drinking water. These funds have also been used to finance wastewater infrastructure projects and other water pollution control initiatives, as well as to assess coastal resiliency.
District Three has made significant progress in its infrastructure projects, with 63 separate road, bridge, active transportation, and airport improvement projects in the state's Ten-Year Plan/Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) fully funded at $776 million dollars. Executive Councilor's commitment to prioritizing the safety and well-being of her constituents and addressing their concerns is evident in her actions to improve safety at an unsafe intersection on Route 125, mandating necessary changes and securing funding through the Highway Safety Improvement Program to prevent future accidents.
Executive Councilor Stevens played an instrumental role in approving 100% of the housing support and stability funds, which included the InVest NH, Emergency Rental Assistance, and Homeowners Assistance Fund programs. Executive Councilor Stevens was the sole Executive Councilor to consistently support the InVest NH program which has accelerated the construction of multi unit workforce housing and will create 1,500 new housing units through 30 statewide projects. She supported her constituents, especially senior citizens, and disabled residents, with gaining access to the Emergency Rental Assistance program.
As an advocate for school safety, she successfully petitioned Governor Sununu and the Commissioners of Education and Public Safety to prioritize the Security Action for Education (SAFE) grant program. This program, funded through the School Infrastructure Fund, provided two rounds of funding for school security improvement projects for public and private schools in the categories of surveillance, access control, and emergency alerting. District Three received a significant amount of funding - $2.7 million dollars - which was used for security improvements at 76 unique schools in thirty-one municipalities within the district.
For more than 29 years, Executive Councilor Stevens has served New Hampshire residents as a gubernatorial appointee, non-profit steward, municipal government leader and small business owner. She has served on non-profit boards representing health, education, preservation, and performing arts since 1992, including AIDS Response Seacoast, Strawbery Banke Museum, Prescott Park Arts Festival, and The Music Hall. As a gubernatorial appointee, Councilor Stevens served on the Board of Mental Health Practices and the Investigation of the Seacoast Cancer Cluster.
Janet and her husband Dr. Bob Stevens have been Seacoast residents for 30 years. They have 2 grown children – a son who is a 2nd Lieutenant in the United States Marines and a daughter a student at Bowdoin College. A former elite level distance runner, she spends any spare time biking, hiking, and skiing NH trails with her family.