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2/15/2017 House GOP Members to Propose Changes to House Rules Legislation
STATE HOUSE  --  House Minority Leader Patricia Morgan and members of the House GOP Caucus intend to propose several amendments to House Rules legislation being voted upon on the floor of the House on Wednesday, February 15, 2017.
 
One amendment, important to House GOP members, addresses Sub A legislation.  For example, under House Rules, after an original bill is heard in a committee, changes to it are often negotiated among various stakeholders. A substitute bill is produced from this process that can deviate dramatically from the original. Unfortunately as the process now stands, this Substitute A legislation arrives unseen in committee and members are expected to vote on it immediately. It does not allow the responsible deliberation that one would expect when passing legislation that affects the general public. To correct the process, House Minority Whip Blake Filippi (R-District 36 Charlestown, South Kingstown, Westerly, New Shoreham) will be introducing an amendment requiring that all changes in a substitute bill be redlined.  This process of underlining all changes to the original bill or existing law will allow representatives to easily and quickly focus their attention on the relevant changes.  The goal of this amendment is to insure informed votes.
 
Additionally, Representative Justin Price (R-District 39 Richmond, Exeter, Hopkinton) will introduce an amendment to require a 24 hour posting period before a substitute bill can be voted on in committee.  This will allow representatives and affected stakeholders time to study, understand and debate all the changes before releasing the bill to the floor.
 
Senior Deputy Minority Leader Anthony Giarrusso (R-District 30 East Greenwich, West Greenwich) will be introducing an amendment to House Rules, which will require that any bill passed towards the end of the session be posted 96 hours before it can receive a vote in committee or on the floor. In current practice, bills can be introduced for a vote and representatives are asked to vote on them without the benefit of a thorough vetting by them or input from the public. The process does not allow for thoughtful decisions.  Requiring 96 hours to study a bill and its ramifications will protect the public.
 
Representative Sherry Roberts (R-District 29 Coventry, West Greenwich) will introduce a floor amendment to the Rules of the House which will do away with the tedious process of seconding bills by allowing the Speaker of the House in his discretion to allow the House voting machines to reflect each member who is seconding a particular bill.  Currently, each member must stand and be verbally acknowledged by the Speaker if they wish to second a bill.  The process consumes time that could be used more productively.  Allowing members to indicate their support with a machine vote, will be faster, easier and accurate.
 
Members of the House Minority Office include, House Minority Leader Patricia Morgan (R-District 26 Coventry, Warwick, West Warwick), Senior Deputy Minority Leader Anthony Giarrusso (R-District 30 East Greenwich, West Greenwich), House Minority Whip Blake Filippi (R-District 36 Charlestown, South Kingstown, Westerly, New Shoreham), Representatives Brian C. Newberry (R-District 48 N. Smithfield, Burrillville), Sherry Roberts (R-District 29 Coventry, West Greenwich), Mike Chippendale (R-District 40 Foster, Glocester, Coventry), Representative Ken Mendonça, (R-District 72 Middletown, Portsmouth), Robert Lancia (R-District 16 Cranston), Bob Quattrocchi (R-District 41 Scituate, Cranston), Justin Price (R-District 39 Richmond, Exeter, Hopkinton) and Robert Nardolillo III (R-District 28 Coventry).

For more information, contact:
Raina C. Smith, House Minority Office
State House Room 106
Providence, RI 02903
(401) 222-2259