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    Legislative Update from your
    Chamber of Commerce Coalition

     

    Medicaid Savings -  Governor Raimondo issued Executive Order 15-08 and thus created the “Working Group to Reinvent Medicaid.”  The group was charged with finding significant savings for a system that represents 31.5% of the state’s budget.  The group recently released a proposal to save about $90 million in FY2016.  The Working Group’s recommendations fall into three major categories:

     

    (1)   Reforms to the payment and delivery system, to move away from the current fee-for-service model which pays for volume towards paying for value and quality. In many cases, these recommendations propose short-term reductions in reimbursements to providers, paired with a structure to move towards more effective and accountable models of care.

    (2)   Tools to strengthen the state’s ability to root out waste, fraud, and abuse, ensuring that scarce resources are spent where they are needed most.

    (3)   Tactical improvements to the efficiency of the state’s administration of these programs, ensuring that they operative effectively and leanly.

     

    The full report can be found by clicking here

                                                                                                            

    Below is a list of legislation that was filed this week or that is active this week.  The list contains bill numbers, links to the legislation, summary explanations and the Chamber’s position if applicable. 

     

    House Bill No. 5739, AN ACT RELATING TO TAXATION (Exempts from taxation office equipment greater than ten (10) years old.) The Chamber supports this bill.  It will be heard in the House Finance Committee Tuesday, May 12th.

     

    House Bill No. 5738, AN ACT RELATING TO TAXATION -- BUY LOCAL RI SALES TAX

    HOLIDAY WEEKEND {LC1234/1} (Creates a sales tax holiday in the state of Rhode Island on the first full weekend of August of each year, which would apply to all sales during that time and would be known as the 'Buy Local RI Sales Tax Holiday Weekend.').  This bill is under review.  It will be heard in the House Finance Committee Tuesday, May 12th.

     

    House Bill No. 5557, AN ACT RELATING TO TAXATION -- SALES AND USE TAXES – LIABILITY AND COMPUTATION (Reduces the tax on utility services to business to 3.5% July 1, 2015, 2.5% July 1, 2016, and then eliminates the sales tax on July 1 2017.)  The Chamber supports this bill.  It will be heard in the House Finance Committee Tuesday May 12th. The Chamber also supported the budget Article that proposes to eliminate the sales tax.

     

    House Bill No. 6180AN ACT RELATING TO LABOR AND LABOR RELATIONS - WAGE DISCRIMINATION BASED ON SEX PROHIBITED (Provides protections against wage differentials based solely on sex.)  This bill was filed this week and is currently under review by the Chamber.

     

    Senate Bill No. 879AN ACT RELATING TO TAXATION (Eliminates the sales tax on alcoholic beverages other than beer and malt beverages and would eliminate the minimum markup on those beverages and also increases the excise tax on beer, spirits, and wine.)  This bill was filed this week and is currently under review by the Chamber