1. Proposed constitutional amendments, requiring voter approval if passed by the legislature, being heard in the Rhode Island General Assembly this week:
- S0173: Subjects the General Assembly to the state Ethics Commission, while changing the composition of the commission so that 6 of its 11 members are appointed by the Governor from lists of candidates submitted by “the speaker of the house of representatives, the majority leader of the house of representatives, the minority leader of the house of representatives, the president of the senate, the majority leader of the senate, and the minority leader of the senate”, and allows Ethics Commission decisions to be appealed to the courts. (S Judiciary; Tue, Apr 14)
- S0056: Subjects the General Assembly to the state Ethics Commission and that’s it. (S Judiciary; Tue, Apr 14)
- S0057/S0059: Line-item veto for the Governor of Rhode Island… (S Judiciary; Tue, Apr 14) …but implemented in a manner that may leave open the possibility of the GA overriding a set of line-item vetoes with a single en-masse vote.
- S0062: Extends state Senator and state Representative terms to four years, in return for creating a term-limit of three terms. (S Judiciary; Tue, Apr 14) I don’t support the term-of-office extension. That said, a more reasonable proposal would stagger four-year terms so that half of the House and Senate are up for election every two years.
- S0436: Mandates instant-runoff voting for the state’s general officers (but doesn’t specify the details of the process, though that could reasonably left to legislation). (S Judiciary; Tue, Apr 14)
- H6027: Eliminates the requirement of 30 days of residency at an address, before being allowed to vote in an election as a registered voter at that address. (H Judiciary; Wed, Apr 15)