April 1, 2011

Ten Bills Scheduled to be Heard by RI General Assembly Committees, April 5 - April 7

Carroll Andrew Morse

10. H5830: Requires real estate commissions to be paid at the closing. (House Corporations, April 5)

9. H5575: From the official description: "This act would affirm the use in state legal proceedings of unsworn declarations made by declarations who are physically outside the boundaries of the United States when making the declaration". (House Corporations, April 5)

8. H5384:/H5471: Two of several bills related to auto-body shops. I know this isn't the most pressing issue facing Rhode Island, but if anyone has any insights into whether the long running public relations battle between auto insurance companies and auto body shops in this state for hearts, minds and dollars is something that happens everywhere, or is a uniquely Rhode Island thing, here's an excuse to tell people about it. (House Corporations, April 6)

7. Bud Art. 7: If I am reading this right, this would change the law so that in addition to each "telephone access line" into a residence or business being assessed a surcharge, as is currently the case, any wireless device would also be assessed a separate surcharge. It's another aspect of Governor Chafee's lower and broaden method for increasing taxes. (House Finance, April 7)

6. H5905: "No police department within this state, including the state police, shall use any checkpoint, random or otherwise, as an investigative measure in the detection and apprehension of motorists who may be under the influence". (House Judiciary, April 6)

5. H5366: "Custodial interrogations" in cases where a potential criminal sentence is life imprisonment must be recorded to be admissible as evidence. (House Judiciary, April 6)

4. H5887: Establishes state limits on "greenhouse gas" emissions that are "equivalent to twenty percent (20%) below the 1990 level, to be achieved by 2020, and...eighty percent (80%) below the 1990 level, to be achieved by 2050". (House Environment, April 7)

3. H5904: Establishes civil unions for "any two unmarried persons who are excluded from entering into a valid marriage under the marriage laws of this state". (House Judiciary, April 5)

2. Bud Art. 25: Changes to Rhode Island's business taxation system, e.g. combined reporting, minimum franchise tax, etc. (House Finance, April 6)

1. H5092: Incarcerated individuals who go before Rhode Island courts on criminal matters would be required to have their immigration status verified. (House Judiciary, April 6)

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#7 "and upon each wireless instrument or device, including cellular, telephony, Internet,Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP), satellite, computer, radio, communication, data, or any other wireless instrument."

How in the world are they going to determine this? Are we going to have the wireless inspector coming to our homes?

Posted by: tcc3 at April 1, 2011 3:46 PM

H5830: a prime example of government interfering with private dealings that are none of its business under the US or the RI Constitution. That GA members think they should have such power to meddle is symptomatic of the Statist disease.

H5575: This one as well. I'd like to know what incident triggered the genius to write this gem.

H5366: More "rights" for criminals, never anything to obtain real justice for victims.

H5887: This is pure evil arising from purely willful ignorance of the facts. The hypothesis of AGM has been thoroughly debunked through exposure of the fraudulent techniques of its "scientist" advocates. This bill violates our Constitutional protection from imposition of a state religion as it bows down to the cult of Gorism.

Posted by: BobN at April 2, 2011 7:09 AM


Having spent too much time now trying to make sense of Article 7, I'm guessing (or maybe hoping) that it was hastily thrown together, and doesn't really express the idea that it is supposed to.

1. As it is currently written, it is pretty clear that any device with "wireless" ability is to be taxed, whether it is turned on or not. Like you suggested, how does the tax man know how many wireless devices I have in my house?

2. Does a wireless router now get taxed, separately from the line it connects to, and separately from each computer that connects to it? Lower and broaden, baby!

3. By the letter of the law, couldn't taxing "radios" be read to imply that every "Marconi wireless" device in my house is subject to the tax (as well as the one in my car in the driveway)? It's not really clear.

4. And again, by the letter of the law, this bill taxes my wireless "data". Huh?

For some reason, I have in my mind the image of Richard Licht writing a message with a quill pen by the light of a keosene lamp to one of his aides that says let's tax those newfangled wireless things to raise revenue.


I had the same thought about H5575 being related to a specific incident.

On H5887, wouldn't an 80% reduction in "greenhouse gasses" require taking a big chunk of the existing auto fleet off of the road?

Posted by: Andrew at April 2, 2011 10:33 AM
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