April 1, 2013

Coming up in Committee: Forty Sets of Bills Scheduled to be Heard by the RI General Assembly, April 2 - April 4, Part 4

Carroll Andrew Morse


Somehow, I missed the entire Senate Judiciary hearing for Tuesday, April 2, which includes:

  • S0039/S0044: The bills to eliminate the master lever (which would have been rated #1).
  • S0422: State-issued drivers' licenses for illegal immigrants (which would have been either #2 or #3).
  • S0769/S0553: Two bills that create in-person early voting in Rhode Island elections, beginning several weeks before the "traditional" election day, and S0447 which eliminates the requirement that mail-in ballot applicants provide an explanation "setting forth the facts relating to the circumstances necessitating the application" (low to mid-teens).
  • S0450: Senate companion to this week's #16.
  • S0549: Prohibiting anyone who has contracted with the state for $5,000 or more from making a political campaign contribution to an officeholder responsible for that contract (high-teens or low 20s)

10. S0681: Changes the law regarding the judicial review of the administrative approvals required as part of the change of ownership or control of a hospital. The law makes a point of placing appeals of Attorney-General decisions on a slightly different track than appeals of Department of Health decisions, and appears to make the criteria that the Superior Court is to use in making a decision on an appeal much more fuzzy. Submitted at a joint request of the Governor and the Lieutenant Governor (which is a rare occurrence). (S Health & Human Services; Tue, Apr 2)

9. S0234: Constitutional amendment to create 4-year terms with a limit of 3 consecutive terms for Rhode Island Senators and Representatives. (S Special Legislation and Veterans Affairs; Wed, Apr 3)

8. H5645: Limits unemployment benefits associated with a seasonal job to the season(s) when that job would be active. (H Finance; Wed, Apr 3)

7. S0618: "A healthcare entity or health plan shall not deny payment for a claim for medically necessary inpatient services resulting from an emergency admission provided by a hospital solely on the basis that the hospital did not timely notify such healthcare entity or health plan that the services had been provided". (S Health & Human Services; Thu, Apr 4)

6. H5791: Applies the annual property tax-cap currently applied to municipalities to fire districts and, in the event that a fire-district is liquidated, requires the containing municipality to automatically assume fire-protection responsibility including management and costs. (H Municipal Government; Thu, Apr 4)

5B. H5030 reduces the corporate minimum tax to $250 for the first three year's of a corporation's existence, but has no impact on corporate tax liability, since they will still owe a $500 franchise tax. H5115 reduces the corporate minimum tax to $50, but has no impact on a corporation's tax liability since they will still owe the $500 franchise tax. (H Finance; Thu, Apr 4) Details on corporate minimum income versus franchise tax are available here.

5A. H5200: Repeals the franchise tax in its entirety, leaving the corporate minimum tax in place; one effect of this would be to eliminate the minimum annual tax on S-corps. (H Finance; Thu, Apr 4)

4. H5272: Ties the amount of the car-tax reimbursed to a municipality to the percentage of statewide vehicle value located in that municipality (rather than to tax rates that have been frozen arbitrarily by state law). (H Finance; Wed, Apr 3)

3. H5320: Minimum staffing requirement for the number of social workers assigned to a public school. (H Health, Education & Welfare; Wed, Apr 3)

2. S0157: Requires health insurers to "disclose the insurance reimbursement rate to hospitals in this state, including, but not limited to, reimbursement for matters such as medical services and equipment. (S Health & Human Services; Thu, Apr 4)

1. S0260: Repeal of the sections of banking law that allow pay-day lending. (S Corporations; Tue, Apr 2)

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H5645: Limits unemployment benefits associated with a seasonal job to the season(s) when that job would be active.

Makes sense. Can't think of a good present example. But back in the day when in-ground pools were the fashion, pool installers spent the winter on unemploymnt.

S0260: Repeal of the sections of banking law that allow pay-day lending.

It is high interest, but what of the state? The interest rate on delinquent taxes is 18%. Of course, if you overpay, they refund the amount with 3.25% interest.

Posted by: Warrington Faust at April 1, 2013 5:17 PM

The folks in Arizona, voted in a referendum to ban payday loans, 90% of these crooks are still in business, They just changed the name of the loans from "payday loans" too "car title loans" (and other names). Even though you are not required to have a clear title, or EVEN OWN A CAR ..LOL

I hope that Rhode Island's legislation does not have the same loopholes

Posted by: Sammy in Arizona at April 1, 2013 11:40 PM

Sammy - I have a solution. If you don't want a pay day loan, don't walk into a pay day loan store and take out a pay day loan. Although that might require some personal responsibility, so it is obviously off the table.

Posted by: Dan at April 2, 2013 1:14 PM
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