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Weekly Roundups  

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Senate Majority Leader Ruggerio sponsors legislation to establish tax stabilization standards for I-195 land
Senate Majority Leader Dominick J. Ruggerio announced he plans to submit legislation today that will establish a tax stabilization standards for land located within the I-195 Redevelopment District. The legislation creates 20-year tax stabilization agreements for for-profit organizations located within the district and will allow developers to incrementally pay an increased amount of taxation each year, reaching 100 percent by the end of the agreement period.

Senate passes bill requiring onsite wastewater treatment systems, removal of cesspools
The Senate today passed legislation introduced by Sen. V. Susan Sosnowski (D-Dist. 37, South Kingstown, New Shoreham) that would provide for the eventual removal of all cesspools in the state.  
Minimum wage legislation moving ahead
Legislation to raise the Rhode Island’s minimum wage is now moving forward in both chambers.

Assembly leaders, governor announce 10-year plan to invest in state's highways, other transportation infrastructure
Governor Gina M. Raimondo, Speaker of the House of Representatives  Nicholas A. Mattiello and President of the Senate M. Teresa Paiva Weed today announced RhodeWorks, a bold action plan to address the state's crumbling transportation infrastructure. RhodeWorks funds will be used to fix more than 150 structurally deficient bridges and make repairs to another 500 bridges. A $700 million proposed revenue bond will accelerate the reconstruction of bridges and a user fee for large commercial vehicles will generate the necessary revenue to pay off the bond.

Senate passes Senator Metts’ Community - Police Relationship Act
STATE HOUSE – On Tuesday, May 26, the Rhode Island Senate passed Sen. Harold M. Metts’ (D-Dist. 6, Providence) legislation that improves relations between the community and police. The “Comprehensive Community – Police Relationship Act of 2015” (2015-S 0269) will require all police departments to submit to the Department of Transportation’s Office of Highway Safety an annual report indicating what action has been taken to address any racial disparities in traffic stops and/or searches documented in previous reports.

Non-trade apprentice incentive bill passes Senate
The Rhode Island Senate has passed legislation that seeks to move apprenticeship training beyond typical building trades such as construction and plumbing and into more non-traditional sectors of the workforce and economy, such as manufacturing, information technology, design and management.  The bill, sponsored by Senate Majority Leader Dominick J. Ruggerio, directs the Governor's Workforce Board to establish a wage reimbursement incentive for each apprentice enrolled in a non-trade program.

House passes Fellela bill to prohibit computer use in making threats against schools
The House of Representatives today passed a bill sponsored by Rep. Deborah Fellela (D-Dist. 43, Johnston) that would make it a felony to use a computer to make threats against students at school.  
Senate passes O’Neill bill stiffening penalties for hit-and-run drivers
The Senate today approved legislation introduced by Sen. Edward J. O’Neill (I-Dist. 17, Lincoln, North Providence, North Smithfield) that would create harsher penalties for leaving the scene of a motor vehicle accident.   
Senate approves Paiva Weed bill establishing performance-based funding for public colleges
The Rhode Island Senate today approved legislation to establish a performance-based funding component to state aid for Rhode Island’s institutions of higher learning, linking funding to achievement of certain goals, such as improved on-time graduation rates and increasing the number of students completing programs in high-demand fields.

Panel studying charter school funding issues report
A legislative commission to studying Rhode Island’s school funding formula found that certain high-cost expenditure burdens were disproportionately borne by public sending districts and that charter schools saw increases in their respective tuition payments as a result.
House passes Serpa murder/parole bill
The Rhode Island House of Representatives today approved legislation that requires individuals convicted of murder to spend more time behind bars before being eligible for parole. The measure passed the House 69 to 3.