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    Under the Dome: 5/7/2018

    May 07, 2018
    An Update from the State House
    Thursday is a key day and will set the tone for the remainder of the legislative session. At 9:00
    a.m. in Room 35 at the State House, the House, the Senate and the Governor will meet for the
    final Revenue Estimating Conference. The three sides will come to an agreement as to how
    much the state will collect in revenue for FY2019. This number affects decisions over funding
    programs, cutting suggestions and tax increase proposals in the upcoming budget. Stay tuned for
    more information.
    Wednesday
    S.2871 (Senators Cano, Goldin, Goodwin, Gallo and Conley) provides an opportunity for
    employees affected by plant closings or mass layoffs to furnish competitive bids to purchase
    businesses otherwise at risk of reducing workforce. The bill states that whenever an employer is
    required by the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act, to provide advance notice
    of a plant closing or mass layoff, the director of the department of labor and training must
    provide to the affected employees (1) written notice of the employee’s right to bid to purchase
    the business, and (2) materials explaining how to conduct an election to determine whether to
    pursue the purchase. Employees would have 30 days after the receipt of the notice to gather
    signatures from 50% of the business’s employees who are interested in purchasing the company.
    S.2871 explicitly states that nothing requires the owner of the business to sell to the employees.
    The bill will be heard by the Senate Labor Committee Wednesday at the Rise –
    approximately 4:30 p.m.

    Thursday
    H.8120 (Rep. Keable, Newberry, Price, Handy, Ruggiero) received a hearing in the House
    Committee on Environment and Energy last Thursday and will now get a committee vote this
    Thursday. H.8120 increases the number of people on the Energy Facilities Siting Board from 3
    to 9. Under current law, the Director of the PUC, DEM and the Director of Administration for
    Planning are the members of the board. This bill would add the Department of Health, Attorney
    General, 4 members of the public (2 of which must be residents of the proposed host community
    of a facility, 1 appointed by the Attorney General with specific qualifications, and 1 who is a
    member of the Rhode Island Bar Association with specific qualifications). If H.8120 were to
    pass it would be very difficult to site any energy facility in the state.
    Political Update
    May and June are critical months for politics as some officials decide whether they will run for
    office again this fall. Anyone wishing to run for office must file a Declaration of Candidacy
    Form with the Local Board of Canvassers in the City or Town in which you reside. Forms can

    be filed June 24 th , 25 th or 26 th . So far, Rep. Jay O’Grady, Lincoln and Sen. Marc Cote,
    Woonsocket have publicly announced they will not seek re-election.

    The following bills were filed last week:
    House Bill No. 8149
    BY  Morin, Phillips, Casey
    ENTITLED, AN ACT RELATING TO MOTOR AND OTHER VEHICLES -
    REGISTRATION OF VEHICLES (Provides for a penalty of $500 for failure of RI residents to
    register their motor vehicle with the RI department of motor vehicles and establishes a hotline to
    report such violation.)
    House Bill No. 8163
    BY  Jacquard, Vella-Wilkinson, Messier, Morin
    ENTITLED, AN ACT RELATING TO INSURANCE -- VOLUNTARY RESTRUCTURING
    OF SOLVENT INSURERS (Allows domestic insurance company to enter into a voluntary
    restructuring, including the use of a protected cell, with the approval of the commissioner.)
    House Bill No. 8165
    BY  Amore, Keable, Shekarchi, Maldonado, Fogarty
    ENTITLED, AN ACT RELATING TO LABOR AND LABOR RELATIONS --
    MECHANICAL TRADES (Adds thermal systems insulation to the regulation and licensing of
    mechanical trades.)
    Senate Bill No. 2854
    BY  Crowley
    ENTITLED, AN ACT RELATING TO TAXATION -- LEVY AND ASSESSMENT OF
    LOCAL TAXES-- CITY OF CENTRAL FALLS (Authorizes Central Falls to adopt 3 separate
    tax classifications of residential property consisting of tax rates: owner-occupied property of 5
    units or less/dwellings of 6 units or more/non owner-occupied property of 5 units or less,
    including mixed use.)
    Senate Bill No. 2871
    BY  Cano, Goldin, Goodwin, Gallo, Conley
    ENTITLED, AN ACT RELATING TO LABOR AND LABOR RELATIONS --
    DEPARTMENT OF LABOR AND TRAINING (Provides an opportunity for employees affected
    by plant closings or mass layoffs to furnish competitive bids to purchase businesses otherwise at
    risk of reducing workforce.)
    Contact:
    Stephen Lombardi
    (401) 885-0020