Tuesday, April 2, 2013
A group of East Bay legislators asked the Rhode Island Congressional delegation to help expand RIPTA routes to Massachusetts.
Legislators ask for federal waiver to connect potential RIPTA route to Fall River bus line Four state senators and representatives from Aquidneck Island have sent a letter into the Rhode Island Congressional delegation, requesting their assistance in allowing the Rhode Island Public Transit Authority (RIPTA) to receive a waiver of insurance for interstate travel between Rhode Island and Massachusetts. Reps. John G. Edwards (D-Dist. 70, Portsmouth, Tiverton) and Dennis M. Canario (D-Dist. 71, Portsmouth, Little Compton, Tiverton), as well as Sens. Christopher S. Ottiano (R-Dist. 11, Portsmouth, Bristol) and Walter S. Felag Jr. (D-Dist. 10, Warren, Bristol, Tiverton), have been engaging in discussions with RIPTA for the past year with the …
Thursday, March 21, 2013
Sessions of the General Assembly will now be available live on this new thing called the Internet.
Thursday, March 21
Press release courtesy the Legislative Press Bureau. Members of the public will now be able to watch committee hearings and a live Senate session on the Internet for the first time in Rhode Island’s history. Capitol TV will be live streaming up to four committee hearings simultaneously, which will allow members of the public to see votes and hearings in real time. Those hearings, as well as the House and Senate sessions, will then be archived so they can be viewed through the Rhode Island General Assembly website on demand. Currently, Capitol TV airs a live House session and tapes the Senate session to broadcast after. Without web-streaming, the channel could only broadcast one live committee meeting at a time. “Now there will be more ways…
Tuesday, March 12, 2013
Tiverton and Little Compton Sen. Louis DiPalma issued recommendations to cut DMV wait times, among others.
Senate Commission recommends changes to speed DMV waits The Special Senate Commission to Study the Division of Motor Vehicles, led by Sen. Louis P. DiPalma (D-Dist. 12, Middletown, Newport, Little Compton, Tiverton), issued several recommendations, including that the DMV post current waiting times for its Cranston headquarters and all its branches on its website to help customers plan for or avoid long lines. Click here to see news release. Gallison proposes ignition locks: Rep. Raymond Gallison (D-Bristol, Portsmouth) sponsored the House version of a bill that would allow judges to order ignition locks for drivers convicted of DUI and alcohol-related offenses. Gallison's bill was one of several aimed at reducing DUI and related …
Monday, March 4, 2013
Here are the highlights from news and events that took place in the General Assembly this week. For more information on any of these items visit http://www.rilin.state.ri.us/News/.
Monday, March 4
Senate passes bipartisan resolution urging Congress to avoid sequestration The Senate passed a bipartisan resolution sponsored by Senate President M. Teresa Paiva Weed (D-Dist.13, Newport, Jamestown) urging Congress to work together to avoid the effects of the federal sequester could have on the state. The resolution (2013-S 0435), cosponsored by Senate Majority Leader Dominick J. Ruggerio (D-Dist. 4, North Providence, Providence) and Senate Minority Leader Dennis L. Algiere (R-Dist. 38, Westerly, Charlestown), also asks Congress to halt the immediate cuts facing Rhode Islanders and develop a balanced and responsible plan to manage the nation’s long-term debt. Click here to see news release. Committee hears legislation to ban certain …
Tuesday, January 22, 2013
The state House Judiciary Committee has scheduled a vote on the controversial measure for 3 pm on Jan. 22.
Tuesday, January 22
A vote by the State House Judiciary committee on a bill allowing same-sex marriage in Rhode Island is scheduled for a vote Tuesday afternoon at 3 p.m., the General Assembly Press Bureau announced. The "Equal Access to Marriage" bill — submitted in the House by Cranston Rep. Arthur Handy and co-sponsored by Rep. Kenneth A. Marshall (D-Dist. 68, Bristol, Warren) — would make Rhode Island the last state in New England to allow same-sex marriages, and would recognize any civil unions as marriages. Tiverton and Little Compton representatives have all signed the bill in support. According to a release from the General Assembly Press Bureau, "no further testimony will be taken at this hearing." The agenda for today's hearing is attached to this …
Thursday, January 3, 2013
Sen. Walter S. Felag, Jr. will retain his leadership position in the Committee on Special Legislation & Veterans Affairs.
Sen. Walter S. Felag, Jr. (D-Dist. 10) was one of six incumbents to retain a leadership position within the standing senate committee. On Wednesday, Senate President M. Teresa Paiva Weed named Felag as chairperson to the Special Legislation & Veterans Affairs Committee. Felag, who represents Tiverton, Bristol, and Warren, is serving out his seventh term as a state legislator and had contributed on senate committees ranging from finance and economic development to agriculture. “I am extremely fortunate to lead a talented team of dedicated individuals committedto the future prosperity of our state,” said Paiva Weed during the ceremony. “I thank each of theseleaders for their willingness to serve in these demanding capacities. They each …
Wednesday, January 2, 2013
In a session full of pomp, circumstance, family and friends, the members of the 2013-14 General Assembly convene for the first time.
Newly elected Tiverton Rep. Dennis Canario (District 71) was sworn into office at an official ceremony this week alongside the states other first-term legislators. Rep. Gordon Fox (D-Providence) was returned to the House speakership by a vote of 66-6, with 3 abstentions. Across the way, in the Senate chambers, 38 senators were sworn in, including Sen. Dawson Hodgson (R-E.G., N.K., S.K., Narr.), and Sen. Leonidas Raptakis (D-Coventry, E.G., W.G.). Sen. Teresa Paiva-Weed (D-Newport, Jamestown) regained the presidency, with Hodgson casting the lone "nay" vote.
Friday, June 15, 2012
Gov. Lincoln Chafee signed the budget into law Friday.
Friday, June 15, 2012
The following is from a State House press release. With the governor’s signature today, following the General Assembly’s passage, the $8.1 billion state budget bill for the 2013 fiscal year is now law. The amended bill does not alter the governor’s proposal to transfer control of the Sakonnet River Bridge to the Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Authority. The Senate approved the proposal earlier this week, and the House voted to approve the budget last week. The plan substantially restores previous cuts to programs for the developmentally disabled, accelerates implementation of the new school aid formula and assists Central Falls’ retirees, while avoiding many of the tax increases Governor Chafee proposed, including the expansion of the …
Thursday, June 14, 2012
It eliminates the criminal charge for carrying one ounce or less of marijuana and instead impose a civil penalty of a $150 fine, plus forfeiture of the drug.
Thursday, June 14, 2012
The following is from a State House press release: Gov. Lincoln D. Chafee has signed legislation to decriminalize marijuana, making Rhode Island the 15th state in the nation to sign similar legislation. The legislation, sponsored by Sen. Joshua Miller (D-Dist. 28, Cranston, Warwick) and Representative John G. Edwards (D-Dist. 70, Tiverton, Portsmouth), eliminates the criminal charge for carrying 1 ounce or less of marijuana and instead impose a civil penalty of a $150 fine, plus forfeiture of the drug. A third offense within 18 months of the previous offense would be treated as a misdemeanor. The bills were approved by both sides last week. “I’m very happy the governor has decided to support this legislation,” said Representative Edwards…
Tuesday, June 12, 2012
The Senate passed the state budget proposal, leaving in tact a plan to transfer ownership of the Sakonnet River Bridge to the Bridge and Turnpike Authority.
The Senate voted 30 to 7 on Monday to approve an $8.1 billion state spending plan, of which $3.3 billion is supported with state revenues. The budget invests in additional school funding, includes restorations to selected human services programs, such as those supporting the developmentally disabled, and protects the tourism and hospitality industry from tax increases, such as a 25-percent increase in the meals and beverage tax as proposed in the governor’s budget plan. The amended bill does not alter the governor’s proposal to transfer control of the Sakonnet River Bridge to the Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Authority (RIBTA). The legislation (2012-H 7323Aaa), which passed the House early Friday morning, is now headed for the governor’…