The 2017 Rhode Island Legislative Session has recessed, and not adjourned, as you may know. That means that we have not finished our business of the session and many questions remain regrading pending legislation and the 2018 Rhode Island State budget.  This type of stalemate has not occurred in recent history.

It is my hope that the RI House and the Senate will return to work quickly so that we may finish the people’s business.  Too may issues were left undone and as always I remain ready to work and to Put Newport First.

This is the not the email that I thought I would be writing to you at this time.  I hoped to write to you and report on the successful 2017 legislative session that I have had.  While all of my priority bills passed the House, unfortunately, most of my them were held up in the final days of the session and are pending in the Senate.

I would, however, like to share with you what I was able to accomplish during this 2017 Legislative Session.   I have listed the bills that have either passed completely or have passed the House and are pending in the Senate.  You can see the full scope of my work this year.

Sponsored and Passed

House resolution to extend the House Study Commission on Tourism where I serve as Chair

House resolution passed to require the Department of Administration to report to the House on the inventory of all state computer and data management systems

H5575 creates a standardized statewide municipal solar permit license

H5777 Removes video games from the definition of “motion picture” for the purposes of the Motion Picture Credit Tax Act, and would extend from July 1, 2021, to July 1, 2024

House resolution asking the Rhode Island Department of Environment to report to the House on the potential federal budget cuts to that department

House resolution to create a House Study Commission to develop recommendations to implement incentives to increase food recovery and donations in the state

Co-sponsored and Passed

H5241 Removes the Rhode Island transit authority’s bus fare adjustments enacted in fiscal year 2016 budget and reinstates free fares for elderly and disabled passengers

Sponsored and passed the House, Pending action in the Senate

H5783 Requires RI Department of Transportation to identify the impact of Rhode Works projects on affected small businesses and provide the Department of Commerce with information so they may assist affected small businesses and minimize the economic impact

H5923 Requires the general treasurer to maintain its “Transparent Treasury Initiative” to assist the public in accessing information regarding how state pension investments are managed and performing

H5042 Requires municipal planning board members to receive training on issues related to development in flood plains and the effects of sea level rise

Co-Sponsored, passed the House and Pending in the Senate

H5478 Creates the Rhode Island Sailing Events Commission in order to attract amateur and professional marine events in Rhode Island

H5229 Requires persons who provide volunteer services with youth serving agencies to get a national criminal records check

H5182 Prohibits the use of a non-hands-free personal wireless communication device while operating a motor vehicle, except for public safety personnel or in an emergency situation, and would provide for monetary fines for violations

H6213 Amends the grounds on which the DMV may refuse registration to include failure to pay municipal metered parking fines by a specified date to include, interest and penalties

~ Representative Lauren Carson
House Small Business Committee
House Oversight Committee
House Committee on Municipal Government 

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Ryan Belmore is the Owner & Publisher of What's Up Newp, LLC. Belmore has led What's Up Newp since December 2012. Belmore also serves as the Sr. Editor - North America for Mountain News - publisher of OnTheSnow. In his spare time, Belmore serves as the Vice President for the Board of Directors at Fort Adams Trust and serves on the Board of Directors at Lucy's Hearth. Belmore is also a member and supporter of Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers. Send questions, tips, and story ideas to Ryan@whatsupnewp.com.