• Under The Dome

    Governor to Deliver the State of the State Address

    Governor Dan McKee will present his State of the State Address Tuesday.  The address will be televised and should include a brief outline of his budget priorities for FY2024 which begins in July.  The budget is also expected to include the Governor’s proposal for spending the remainder of the federal relief dollars provided to Rhode Island.  The State is expected to have a $610 million surplus for FY2024 only.  In addition, various outlets have reported Rhode Island will have an additional $100 million surplus as a result of unspent FY2023 funds.  While that money is available, it is important to note that restrictions are tied to those dollars based on federal government requirements.

    Last week, state agencies appeared before the new Senate Finance Committee to provide a report detailing the income and expenditure process for the federal ARPA funds.  The process required agencies to put on paper a plan for the acceptance and expenditure of ARPA funds.  The Department of Administration then had to review each plan to ensure that the plan met all of the federal requirements so that the state would not risk having to reimburse the federal government at a later date.  Once approved, the money was then physically transferred to the agency or entity carrying out the program; and, finally, the agency/entity could begin to implement the program.  

    Senate Names Chairs of Committees

    Senate President Ruggerio named committee chairs and members last week. Leading the Senate Finance Committee is Senator Louis DiPalma who represents Senate District 12 – Little Compton, Middletown, Newport and Tiverton.  Senator Dawn Euer is chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee.  She represents District 13, Newport and Jamestown.  The Senate Environment Committee will be chaired by Senator Alana DiMario of District 36, North Kingstown, Narragansett and New Shoreham.  Senator Mark McKenney, of District 30, Warwick, is the chair of Senate Oversight.  Members of all of the committees can be found at:  https://www.rilegislature.gov/Pages/committees.aspx  The House is expected to name committee chairs and members following the adoption of the 2023-24 rules.

    CHAMBER MEMBER ACTION REQUEST - Preparations for 2023 Session

    The Chamber may be calling you, asking for your assistance as we prepare for this new session.  Please go to https://vote.sos.ri.gov and click on “Find Your Elected Officials.”  Enter zip code and address.  Find your “Representative District” legislator and your “Senate District” legislator (if you live in Rhode Island).  Email your name and the legislators’ names to _____________________.  The Chamber will be compiling a database for future grassroots efforts.  If you also know a legislator who lives in another district, please send that information to the Chamber as well and we will include it in the database.

    Thank you for your help!

    The following new bills have been filed:

    House Bill No. 5036  Shanley, Cortvriend, Craven, AN ACT RELATING TO COMMERCIAL LAW--GENERAL REGULATORY PROVISIONS -- FILING OF ASSUMED NAME (Makes amendments necessary to use the term "trade name" rather than "assumed name", for purposes of the commercial law chapter on filing an assumed name/provides for the administration/regulation of the use of trade names with a 2 yr. renewal requirement.)

    House Bill No. 5050  Edwards, Bennett, Kazarian, Shanley, Hull, Brien, Potter, Alzate, AN ACT RELATING TO PUBLIC PROPERTY AND WORKS -- LABOR AND PAYMENT OF DEBTS BY CONTRACTORS (Amends the definition of public works so that it would include any public works projects performed for any city or town or quasi-municipal entity and the state and any quasi-state entity.)

    House Bill No. 5080   J Lombardi, Hull, Felix, AN ACT RELATING TO INSURANCE -- COVID-19 PANDEMIC INSURANCE RECOVERY ACT (Allows businesses that had an insurance policy in place for business interruption as of March 9, 2020 or thereafter to recover from their insurance companies for a COVID-19 business impact.)

    House Bill No. 5091  Bennett, Carson, Speakman, Cortvriend, McEntee, Caldwell, Shanley, Donovan, Ajello, Handy, AN ACT RELATING TO HEALTH AND SAFETY -- EXTENDED PRODUCER RESPONSIBILITY FOR PACKAGING (Reduces equitable relationships between packaging producers and local governments and communities by establishing the Package Reduction and Recycling Program.)

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