Chamber Connections BLOG
Chamber Connections BLOG
Are You Considering Running for Office?
If you are considering running for a General Assembly seat – House or Senate- the deadline is approaching quickly. The Chamber can be most effective when business people run for office. Declarations for candidacy must be filed June 28th 29th or 30th at the Local Board of Canvassers in the City or Town where you are registered to vote.
The Declaration of Candidacy is the document you sign to start the process of becoming a candidate. You “declare” yourself as a candidate for a particular office and if you wish to run as a party candidate, you also “declare” yourself to be a member of that party. All candidates for all public and party offices must file a Declaration of Candidacy.
More information can be found at Welcome to your Voter Information Center
This Week at the State House
Welcome back from legislative break week! Over the next two months, the Chamber may call upon you to contact your legislators as the General Assembly seeks to wrap up the 2022 session.
Tuesday, April 26th
The Chamber will, once again, make the argument for full restoration of the Unemployment Trust Fund. The Senate Finance Committee will meet Tuesday at the Rise (approximately 4:30 p.m.) in the Senate Lounge. One topic of debate will be the amount of ARPA funds that should be used to replenish the Unemployment Trust Fund. As previously reported, approximately $300 million of the Fund was used to assist workers who became unemployed due to business closures during the COVID 19 pandemic. Included in the $300 million, was about $37 million in fraudulent claims. These numbers are expected to be updated by the Department of Labor during the Tuesday hearing. The Governor, in his proposed budget, has included $30 million for the Fund – if it makes a difference in the tax schedule (it is unlikely to do so). Since the start of the pandemic, Rhode Island businesses have jumped two schedules in unemployment tax rates due to the draw down on the fund. Prior to the pandemic, it was believed the Fund was in such solid financial condition, that businesses would actually see a drop in the tax schedule.
Wednesday, April 27th
The House Finance Committee will meet at the Rise in Room 35. One of the bills scheduled for hearing is H.7642, An Act Relating to Taxation – Agreement to Phase Out Corporate Incentives Compact Act. The bill, put forward by the House Republican caucus, allows Rhode Island to enter intro agreements with other states to establish “anti-poaching” agreements. If two or more states enter into such an agreement, those states cannot grant tax incentives or subsidies to corporations to entice them to move from one state to another – provided the move would be from one compact state to another compact state. The Attorney General would be responsible for enforcement of the compact, with any taxpayer from a compact state having standing to bring suit should the Attorney General not bring and action forward.
The Senate Labor Committee will take up testimony on S.2700, An Act Relating to State Affairs and Government – Rebuild RI Tax Credit. The hearing, set for 4:00 p.m. in room 211, considers whether businesses that receive Rebuild RI Tax Credits must pay construction workers prevailing wages for the project, or have their tax credits revoked. Prevailing wages are higher than market rates. The bill also requires prevailing wages to be utilized for construction jobs associated with film tax credit projects, historic preservation tax credit projects, and Rhode Island New Qualified Jobs Incentive Act 2015 projects. The bill would take effect upon passage. It is unclear if projects already underway, but not completed, would be affected as well.
Thursday, April 28th
The Senate Judiciary Committee will meet at 4:00 p.m. in room 310 to review two bills of interest. S.2645, an Act Relating to Commercial Law, allows individuals who wish to conduct business under an assumed name, to file in person, by mail, or electronically with the office of the city or town clerk the true or real full name(s) of the person or persons transacting business and their email address. This act would take effect on January 1, 2024. Under current law, the individual must go to the town clerk in person and swear an oath to an authorized municipal employee. S.2812, An Act Relating to Corporations, Associations and Partnerships – Uniform Partnership Act, eliminates the state’s current partnership law effective January 1, 2023, and replaces it with an update model rule. This bill was introduced at the request of the Secretary of State. The 126 page bill addresses all aspects of Rhode Island partnerships including transferable interests, enforcement of partnership agreements, powers and dissolution procedures. The bill can be reviewed at S2812.pdf (state.ri.us)
New Bill Introductions:
No bills of interest were filed last week.