Beth Moreau

Candidate Bio


Beth is a lifelong New Hampshire resident. Raised in Dover, she has loved living in Portsmouth for the past 23 years. Beth holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Southern New Hampshire University and a Juris Doctor from New England School of Law. Beth is a licensed attorney in both New Hampshire and Maine and focuses on residential real estate title and closing services. Beth is a successful owner of a Portsmouth-based business that she established in 2012.  Beth and her husband share their home with two cats they adopted from a local shelter.

Beth served as a member of the Portsmouth Planning Board from 2013 to 2021, influencing smart growth and affordable housing initiatives in the city.  She also serves on the Rockingham Planning Commission as the vice chair, ensuring that regional development issues that may affect Portsmouth are fully understood and mitigated. Beth has worked with other councilors and city staff in evaluating the issues facing the city, and developing policies and solutions that work best for the citizens of Portsmouth.  Beth will continue to work on many different fronts towards more affordable housing and support efforts to combat climate change and continue to support sustainable development. Positive change starts with a common vision. Together, let’s continue to move Portsmouth forward. 
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Why I'm Running

There is still a lot of work to be done.

The City of Portsmouth needs to continue looking at parking and transportation throughout the city and our region. Changing the mindset of car first is a process that we can continue to develop along with increasing the options of public transportation. We need to evaluate the parking needs of our neighborhoods and the different areas of our city so that zoning meets the needs of the different neighborhoods. What might work for a downtown neighborhood, is not what will work for a more rural neighborhood.

The City of Portsmouth needs to continue to assess the different ways that we can promote housing affordability. As a city councilor, I have worked towards a multifaceted approach to begin to alleviate the housing crisis that afflicts this community and the entire state.

First, I worked towards updating our Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) ordinance to remove barriers to the creation of these much-needed units, along with the creation of a handbook (in process) for homeowners to help residents understand how to create a ADU on their property. Second, I worked towards updating our downtown incentives to require workforce housing and community space when larger buildings are requested. Third, I have been working with private businesses, towards their involvement in the creation of housing for the workers in our area.

Lastly, I assisted the city in obtaining two grants through Invest NH, one for a $250,000 grant over two years to hire a Community Housing Navigator, whose job is to engage with the community to find ways to expand affordable housing, and the second grant was for $82,000 which is being used to hire consultants to work towards a market study to determine best practices to ensure that incentives are right sized and utilized by developers and result in greater production of workforce housing. This work needs to continue to remove barriers in our zoning and produce more diversity in our housing.

Next, we need to consider creating a Housing Trust and establishing zoning that would allow developers to make payments in lieu of building workforce housing. This would then allow the city to use those funds to establish programs for assisting residents in housing costs and development. Promoting smart, sustainable development will continue to move Portsmouth forward.

Candidate Night

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Candidate Links

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Position On Issues

A comprehensive housing market study for the Portsmouth Housing Authority identified unmet demand for more than 3,000 additional housing units in our city, mostly for rental units. The study also pointed out that almost 50% of Portsmouth residents live in rented homes. Renters effectively pay a share of the owner’s property taxes. But while property owners, especially those in desirable parts of the city, have benefitted from astonishing and unprecedented increases in their home equity, renters — through no fault of their own — have not shared in the wealth creation. Just the opposite, in fact: as rents and the cost of living rise steadily, renters are more cost-burdened every year. You aspire to represent this huge constituency.

Question #1: How should the city address the specific needs of renters?
The city can continue to evaluate land that we own, in order to find properties that could be leased to the PHA which could then provide long-term work force housing. I have also been in some meetings with business leaders in our community, working to help them understand how they could use housing they own as a benefit to employees, similar to health insurance as a benefit, this way businesses could rent units they own to their own staff for 30% of their pay. The city can play a leadership role in stewarding that process. In addition, if reelected, I plan to continue to work on our zoning to promote the ability of developers to make payments in lieu of providing Work Force Housing, into a Housing Trust, that then can be used to help with housing grants and other ways to promote affordable housing options.


The next generations will either benefit or suffer from the policies we enact today regarding climate change, sustainable practices, and the move away from fossil fuels to clean energy.

Question #2: Do you accept that urgent measures are required and, if so, how aggressive should the city be in addressing the crisis?
The city is working on a climate action plan, and in a responsible manner we can work towards implementation of that plan. I believe that plan will let the city leadership know what needs to be done and then we need to set the timetable to make these changes to our city services and zoning.

Records show that the top complaint from Portsmouth neighborhoods for decades has been drivers speeding on their streets. The city has begun implementing traffic calming measures. Changes to infrastructure are the single most effective way to address the issue. Drivers often object at first, but the measures have proven effective. At the same time, the city is doing more to accommodate residents who would rather walk or bike.

Question #3: What kinds of initiatives would you support that further calm traffic and make more of Portsmouth safer for residents on foot or bike?
I already requested a study to move south bound route 1 traffic out of our downtown core and place it on State Street which would then be a two way road. That allows traffic on State Street to be slower and therefore more inviting to bicyclist and walkers. It would also allow the city as we look at an update to market square to give us space to expand sidewalks and promote an area that is much more friendly towards bicyclist and pedestrians, along with promoting that the only cars that come to our core downtown are there to visit a business located in that area. In addition, we need to work to finish the greenway along north mill pond and the extension to the rail trail down by Borthwick Ave. All of these items will help to give multi modal transportation corridors. We also need to promote more public transportation, so that we can being to end the car first mentality this city experiences.