Rhode Island State House Representative Lauren Carson announced this morning that she will run for reelection for her seat representing Newport in House District 75.

Given the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic, Carson says she is determined to recover and grow Newport’s economy and resources.

Carson said in a statement, “We have been sobered by this virus. It has crashed our economy, challenged our health-care systems, and separated us. But this virus has made us more collaborative and understanding. Now more than ever, there is compassion and empathy at work, school, in our neighborhoods, and our community centers. Now it is time to look to the future. That will be what my next term will be about. I am asking for your vote to serve Newport for a fourth term as we recover together, financially and emotionally.”

Carson was first elected in 2014 to the House of Representatives. In her time at the State House, Carson says she has been particularly active on issues related to the environment, small business, tourism, and government transparency. 

In 2015, she sponsored and chaired two RI House study commissions, one to study the economic impact of sea rise on Rhode Island, and another to study ways to expand tourism through effective statewide branding efforts. In 2019, she organized the Aquidneck Island Climate Caucus to focus the island’s efforts concerning sea level rise. In 2017, she sponsored a law requiring education on flooding and sea rise for local planning board members and creating a unified statewide application process for solar panel permitting.

She has sponsored and passed legislation that eliminated the state income tax on Social Security benefits; created an public internet portal at the RI State Treasury that reports on State pensions and pension performance; she secured funding in the 2019 State Budget to create an Aging and Disability Resource Center (ADRC); and created a program establishing small business support during RI DOT road projects that interrupt normal business operations. She has sponsored legislation to create an Airbnb registration system, reduce school food waste and donate excess food to RI food banks and aggressively worked to eliminate the “talking bus” noises in Newport neighborhoods. 

Carson has been honored as a Champion for Seniors by the Edward King House in Newport and Legislator of the Year by the RI Audubon Society, the RI Hospitality Association, and the State Conservation Districts. She has also served on the Advisory Board of the Alliance for Livable Newport, the Newport Energy & Environment Commission and the Environmental Council of the Rhode Island Educational Fund Board.

On her time in office, Carson said, “I have done my best to represent Newport honestly and transparently. I have taken this responsibility very seriously. I promise to continue my tradition of holding constituent meetings throughout the district, virtually if necessary. I promise to be available and to respond to your needs. I promise to govern thoughtfully and honestly.”

The 2020 election season is officially underway, as candidates for local, statewide, and legislative seats begin to file their declarations of candidacy this week.

Those wishing to run for General Assembly or local offices must file with the local board of canvassers in the town in which they are registered to vote between June 22 and June 24.

Those declaring to run for U.S. Senate or U.S. House of Representatives must file with the Department of State’s Elections Division, 148 West River St., Providence.

Party endorsements are due by June 26 for U.S. Senate and U.S. House, and June 25 for all local and General Assembly races.

The next major step for candidate is picking up nomination papers from local canvassers on June 30 and returning them with the required number of signatures by July 10.

For local offices, the number of signatures is set by the Canvassing Authorities and may vary by community.

For General Assembly seats, Senatorial candidates must collect 100 signatures, House of Representative candidates, 50. For U.S. Senate the minimum is 1,000 and U.S. Representatives, 500.

The deadline for individuals to withdraw their candidacies is July 13, otherwise their name appears on the ballot, even if they decide not to run.

All this leads to the primary election on Sept. 8, and the general election on Nov. 3. The deadline to register to vote for the primary is August 9, for the general election, Oct. 4.

Follow our 2020 Election Coverage here and here – Who’s running for office in Newport County? List of local and state candidates is here

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