CHAPTER 109
2000-H 7388B
Enacted 7/7/2000


A  N     A   C   T

RELATING TO STATUTES AND STATUTORY CONSTRUCTION

Introduced By:  Representatives Kenneth Carter

Date Introduced:   February 3, 2000

It is enacted by the General Assembly as follows:

SECTION 1. Section 5-20-35 of the General Laws in Chapter 5-20 entitled "Plumbers" is hereby amended to read as follows:

5-20-35. Persons and acts exempt - Issuance of licenses in special cases. -- (a) The provisions of this chapter do not apply to the installation of automatic sprinkler systems or other fire protection appliances in this state and do not apply to employees of public utilities (publicly or privately owned); provided, that any resident of Rhode Island not licensed, as provided in this chapter, desiring a license as a master plumber or journeyperson plumber who on or before August 14, 1966 presents to the department of labor and training of the state reasonably satisfactory evidence, in writing, that he or she was actively engaged in the business of plumbing as a master plumber or working as a journeyperson plumber for a master plumber in any city or town for five (5) years prior to May 16, 1966 and that he or she is at the time of presenting that evidence to the department of labor and training operating in any city or town as a master plumber or working as journeyperson plumber, shall, upon payment of a fee of five dollars ($5.00) in the case of a master plumber or one dollar ($1.00) in the case of a journeyperson plumber, have issued to him or her by the department of labor and training a certificate of license as a master plumber or a journeyperson plumber without an additional application, fee, or other condition precedent.

(b) Notwithstanding the preceding provisions, if any city or town has enacted an ordinance as provided in this section after May 1, 1964 and before January 1, 1966, any resident, not licensed as provided in this chapter, desiring a license as a master or journeyperson plumber, in that city or town, shall on or before August 1, 1966, present to the department the evidence required in this section and shall upon payment of the required fee have issued to him or her by the department a certificate of license as a master plumber or journeyperson plumber without any additional application, fee, or other condition precedent.

SECTION 2. Section 5-29-41 of the General Laws in Chapter 5-29 entitled "Podiatrists" is hereby repealed.

5-29-41. Continuation of prior proceedings. -- Any proceeding or other business or matter undertaken or commenced, prior to October 1, 1988, the functions, powers and duties of which are assigned and transferred to the director of health or board of examiners in podiatry and pending on October 1, 1988, may be conducted and completed by the director of the department of health or by a subordinate under his or her discretion, or by the board of examiners in podiatry in the same manner and under the same terms and conditions and with the same effect as though it were undertaken or commenced or completed by the department, division, or other board prior to the transfer.

SECTION 3. Section 5-51-2 of the General Laws in Chapter 5-51 entitled "Rhode Island State Board of Examiners of Landscape Architects" is hereby amended to read as follows:

5-51-2. Board -- Creation -- Composition -- Appointment, terms, and qualifications of members -- Duties -- Compensation -- (a) There is established a state board of landscape architects which consists of seven (7) members.

(1) On May 19, 1975, the governor shall appoint one member to serve until the first day of February, 1976, or until his or her successor is appointed and qualified; one member to serve until the first day of February, 1977, or until his or her successor is appointed and qualified; one member to serve until the first day of February, 1978, or until his or her successor is appointed and qualified; one member to serve until the first day of February, 1979, or until his or her successor is appointed and qualified; and one member to serve until February, 1980, or until his or her successor is appointed and qualified.

(2) Upon completion of the original term the terms of members identified in subdivision (1) shall be for five (5) years.

(3) One member of the board is from the general public; and one member is from the state department of environmental management. Those members serve for terms of five (5) years.

(4) Three (3) members of the board are landscape architects whose residences and principal places of business are within this state, who have been actively engaged in the practice of landscape architecture within this state. The original appointees to the board need not be registered but engaged in the practice of landscape architecture for a minimum of four (4) years.

(5) The governor may remove any member from office for misconduct, incapacity or neglect of duty.

(b) During the month of July of each year, the board shall elect from its members a chair and a vice chair.

(c) The secretary of the board keeps a true and complete record of all proceedings of the board and aids in the enforcement of this chapter.

(d) The board may make all necessary regulations and by-laws not inconsistent with this chapter.

(e) In carrying into effect the provisions of this chapter, the board may subpoena witnesses and compel their attendance and may require the production of books, papers, and documents in any proceeding involving the revocation of registration, or practicing or offering to practice without registration.

(1) Any member of the board may administer oaths or affirmations to witnesses appearing before the board.

(2) If any person fails to appear in response to that process, or if, having appeared in obedience to the process, he or she refuses to answer any pertinent questions put to him or her by any member of the board or its counsel, he or she, upon presentation of those facts to the superior court, is subject to any fines and penalties that might be imposed by this court if that failure or refusal occurred in any civil action pending in that court.

(f) The board may establish a procedure for complaints concerning any licensed or certified landscape architects.

(g) The board shall establish procedures and programs in conjunction with the department of environmental management and annually publishes a report of its activities, operations, and recommendations.

(h) The members of the board receive compensation of twenty-five dollars ($25.00) for meetings attended; provided that no member receives more than three hundred dollars ($300) annually.

SECTION 4. Section 11-5-4 of the General Laws in Chapter 11-5 entitled "Assaults" is hereby amended to read as follows:

11-5-4. Assault with dangerous weapon in dwelling house. -- Whoever, being armed with a dangerous weapon, assaults another with intent to rob or murder, shall, if the assault is committed within a dwelling house, be punished by imprisonment in the adult correctional institution for not less than ten (10) years to life; provided, however, that any law inconsistent herewith, shall not be deemed to be repealed insofar as it is applicable to any offense committed before May 6, 1957.

SECTION 5. Section 11-9-13.16 of the General Laws in Chapter 11-9 entitled "Children" is hereby amended to read as follows:

11-9-13.16. Rules and regulations. -- (a) The Department of Health shall promulgate within one hundred twenty (120) days of this act being signed into law the rules and regulations necessary to fulfill the intent of this legislation.

SECTION 6. Section 11-20-3 of the General Laws in Chapter 11-20 entitled "Graves and Corpses" is hereby amended to read as follows:

11-20-3. Removal of marker on veteran's grave. -- (a) Malicious or unauthorized removal of Every person who maliciously or without authorization removes an American flag in the vicinity of a veteran's grave or from a flag staff in a cemetery shall be imprisoned not exceeding sixty (60) days, or fined not exceeding one hundred dollars ($100).

(b) Every person who shall, without right, remove from any grave a marker that was authorized to be placed by the cemetery to designate that the grave was the grave of a deceased veteran shall be imprisoned not exceeding one hundred and twenty (120) days or fined not exceeding five hundred dollars ($500) for a first offense, and shall be imprisoned not exceeding one hundred and twenty (120) days or fined not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000) for a second offense.

(c) Every person, firm, partnership or corporation who shall purchase, sell or destroy any above-mentioned marker shall be subject to the same penalties provided in subsection (b).

SECTION 7. Section 11-27-11 of the General laws in Chapter 11-27 entitled "Law Practice" is hereby amended to read as follows:

11-27-11. Practices permitted to persons not members of bar. -- Nothing in 11-27-5 - 11-27-11, inclusive, shall be construed to limit or prevent:

(1) Clerks of court and recorders of deeds from the drafting of such legal instruments as may be necessary for the proper conduct and discharge of their respective offices and duties.

(2) Clerks or registered students in law offices from acting under the direction of a member of the bar of this state whose authority as a member to practice law is in full force and effect.

(3) Any person from occasionally collecting or adjusting any unassigned claim of or against any member of his or her household or of or against his or her regular and principal employer.

(4) The performance of any service personally performed by any natural person acting as administrator, executor, guardian, trustee, or other fiduciary in the preparation, rendering, and allowance of inventories, accounts, tax returns, or other services personally performed by him or her in relation to the fiduciary estate without the intervention of another person.

(5) Town clerks from drafting deeds and mortgages and transfers and discharges of deeds and mortgages for recording in their own offices.

(6) Any person from drawing, in the regular course of his or her regular business or employment, any note, bill, draft, bill of sale, conditional bill of sale, or any ordinary business agreement, to which he or she or his or her regular and principal employer is a party.

(7) Any certified public accountant or member of the American institute of accountants from appearing or acting as a representative of another person before any federal, state, or municipal department, board, division, department, commission, agency, or any body other than a court, authorized or constituted by law to determine any question of fact, affecting the imposition or adjustment of taxes or regarding any financial or accounting matter, or from preparing for or on behalf of another person any federal, state, or municipal return or report of any nature or description, or advising another person in relation to the preparation of any such return or report.

(8) Any person registered to practice before the interstate commerce commission or member of the association of practitioners before the interstate commerce commission from appearing or acting as representative of another person before any federal, state, or municipal department, board, commission, agency, or any body other than a court, authorized or constituted by law to determine any question of fact, affecting the rights of any carrier of persons or property in intrastate or interstate commerce, or from preparing for or on behalf of another person any federal, state, or municipal application, report or other writing of any nature or description, or advising another person in relation to the preparation of any such application, report, or other writing.

(9) Any public accountant from advising a taxpayer in connection with the imposition or adjustment of taxes or any person from preparing for or on behalf of a taxpayer any federal, state, or municipal tax return or tax report, provided such person or public accountant regularly audits or examines the accounting records of such taxpayer or any person from preparing for or on behalf of a taxpayer any federal, state, or municipal personal income tax return.

(10) Any of the employee assistants of the department of workers' compensation from advising and assisting employees in preparing for and assisting at informal hearings under 28-33-1.1 [repealed].

SECTION 8. Section 11-34-8.3 of the General Laws in Chapter 11-34 entitled "Prostitution and Lewdness" is hereby amended to read as follows:

11-34-8.3. Criminal forfeiture procedures. -- (a) Any criminal complaint charging an offense under 11-34-8.1 or 11-34-8.2 shall set forth with reasonable particularity: (1) whether the law enforcement agency seeks to have forfeited property pursuant to this section; and (2) what property the law enforcement agency seeks to have forfeited.

(b) The court may, upon application of the law enforcement agency, enter a restraining order or injunction, require any person claiming any interest in the subject motor vehicle to execute a satisfactory performance bond to the state, or take any other action to preserve the availability of the motor vehicle subject to forfeiture described in 11-34-8.2 whether prior to or subsequent to the filing of a complaint.

Written notice and an opportunity for a hearing shall be afforded to persons appearing to have an interest in the motor vehicle, said hearing to be limited to the issues of whether:

(1) There is a substantial probability that the law enforcement agency will prevail on the issue of forfeiture and that failure to enter the order will result in the motor vehicle being destroyed, conveyed, encumbered or further encumbered, removed from the jurisdiction of the court, or otherwise made unavailable for forfeitures; and

(2) The need to preserve the availability of property through the entry of the requested order outweighs the hardship on any party against whom the order is to be entered.

(c) An order under this section may be entered upon application of the law enforcement agency without notice or opportunity for a hearing when a complaint has not yet been filed with respect to the property if the law enforcement agency demonstrates that there is probable cause to believe that the property with respect to which the order is sought would, in the event of conviction, be subject to forfeiture under 11-34-8.2 and that provision of notice will jeopardize the availability of the motor vehicle for forfeiture. The order shall expire within ten (10) days of the date on which it is entered unless for good cause shown or unless the party against whom it is entered consents to an extension for a longer period.

(1) A hearing requested by any party in interest concerning an order entered under this subsection shall be held at the earliest possible time and prior to the expiration of the temporary order.

(2) The court may receive and consider, at the hearing held pursuant to this subsection, evidence and information that would be inadmissible in court.

(d) Upon conviction of a person for an offense under 11-34-8.1, the court may enter a judgment of forfeiture of the property described in 11-34-8.2 and 11-34-8.3 to the city or town and shall also authorize the law enforcement agency to seize the motor vehicle ordered forfeited upon such terms and conditions as the court shall deem proper. Following the entry of an order declaring the property forfeited, the court may, upon application of the law enforcement agency, enter such appropriate orders; require the execution of satisfactory performance bonds, appoint receivers, conservators, appraisers, accountants, or trustees; or take any other action to protect the interest of the law enforcement agency in the motor vehicle ordered forfeited.

(e) All right, title, and interest in the motor vehicle described in 11-34-8.1 vests in the city or town upon the commission of the act giving rise to forfeiture under this section subject to the limitations of 11-34-8.2. Any such motor vehicle that is subsequently transferred to any person may be the subject of a special verdict of forfeiture and thereafter shall be ordered forfeited to the state, unless the transferee establishes in a hearing pursuant to subsection (f) below that he or she is a bona fide purchaser for value of the motor vehicle who at the time of purchase was reasonably without cause to believe that the motor vehicle was subject for forfeiture.

SECTION 9. Chapter 11-40 of the General Laws entitled "Sunday Laws" is hereby repealed.

CHAPTER 11-40

SUNDAY LAWS

11-40-1. Work or recreation on Sunday prohibited. -- Except as provided in sections 5-22-6 - 5-22-11, inclusive, every person who shall do or exercise any labor or business or work of his or her ordinary calling, or use any game, sport, play, or recreation on the first day of the week, or suffer it to be done or used by his or her children, servants or apprentices, works of necessity and charity only excepted, shall be fined not exceeding five dollars ($5.00) for the first offense and ten dollars ($10.00) for the second and every subsequent offense; provided, further, however, that the above prohibitions shall not apply to any person or persons operating or functioning under a valid permit or license.

11-40-2. Employment of servants of others on Sunday. -- Every person who shall employ, improve, set to work, or encourage the servant of any other person to commit any act named in 11-40-1 shall suffer the punishment stated in that section.

11-40-3. Time of filing complaints. -- All complaints for violations of the provisions of sections 11-40-1 and 11-40-2 shall be made within ten (10) days after the violations and not afterwards. .

11-40-4. Faiths observing other days as Sabbath. -- Every professor of the Sabbatarian faith or of the Jewish religion, and such others as shall be owned or acknowledged by any church or society of the respective professions as members of or as belonging to that church or society, shall be permitted to labor in their respective professions or vocations on the first day of the week, but the exception in this section contained shall not confer the liberty of opening shops or stores on that day for the purpose of trade and merchandise, or lading, unlading, or of fitting out of vessels, or of working at the smith's business or any other mechanical trade in any compact place, except the compact villages in Westerly and Hopkinton, or of drawing seines or fishing or fowling in any manner in public places and out of their own possessions; and in case any dispute shall arise respecting the person entitled to the benefit of this section, a certificate from a regular pastor or priest of any of the above-mentioned churches or societies or from any three (3) of the standing members of the church or society, declaring the person claiming the exemption to be a member of or owned by or belonging to the church or society, shall be received as conclusive evidence of the fact.

SECTION 10. Section 11-44-1 of the General Laws in Chapter 11-44 entitled "Trespass and Vandalism" is hereby amended to read as follows:

11-44-1. Vandalism - Obstruction of lawful pursuits. -- (a) [As amended by P.L. 1995, ch. 167, 1.] Every person who shall wilfully willfully and maliciously or mischievously injure or destroy or write upon, paint, or otherwise deface the property of another, or obstruct the use of the property of another, or obstruct another in the prosecution of his or her lawful business or pursuits, in any manner, the punishment of which is not specifically provided for by statute, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and shall be fined not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000) and/or be imprisoned not exceeding one year and shall be liable to make restitution for the injury or damage caused. Every person convicted of a first offense under this section shall be required to perform up to one hundred (100) hours of public community service work, and for a second or subsequent conviction shall be required to perform up to two hundred (200) hours of public community service work. Provided, further that every person who shall willfully and maliciously or mischievously injure or destroy or write upon, paint or otherwise deface government property, or obstruct the use of said property, shall be punished in accordance with this statute. Jurisdiction for matters involving government property shall be concurrent with the district court or the respective city or town police/municipal court.

(b) Where the provisions of "The Domestic Violence Prevention Act", 12-29-1 et seq., are applicable, the penalties for violation of this section shall also include the penalties as provided in 12-29-5.

(c) [As added by P.L. 1995, ch. 89, 1 and P.L. 1995, ch. 221, 1.] Every person who is convicted of vandalism under this section shall be required to perform up to twenty (20) hours of community service work.

SECTION 11. Sections 11-47-8 and 11-47-35 of the General Laws in Chapter 11-47 entitled "Weapons" are hereby amended to read as follows:

11-47-8. License or permit required for carrying pistol - Possession of machine gun. -- (a) No person shall, without a license or permit, issued as provided in 11-47-11, 11-47-12 and 11-47-18, carry a pistol or revolver in any vehicle or conveyance or on or about his or her person whether visible or concealed, except in his or her dwelling house or place of business or on land possessed by him or her or as provided in 11-47-9 and 11-47-10. The provisions of the above section shall not apply to any person who is the holder of a valid license or permit issued by the licensing authority of another state, or territory of the United States, or political subdivision thereof, allowing him or her to carry a pistol or revolver in any vehicle or conveyance or on or about his or her person whether visible or concealed, provided the person is merely transporting the firearm through the state in a vehicle or other conveyance without any intent on the part of said person to detain him or herself or remain within the state of Rhode Island. No person shall manufacture, sell, purchase, or possess a machine gun except as otherwise provided in this chapter. Every person violating the provision of this section shall, upon conviction, be punished by imprisonment for not less than one nor more than ten (10) years or by a fine up to ten thousand dollars ($10,000), or both, and except for a first conviction under this section shall not be afforded the provisions of suspension or deferment of sentence, nor a probation.

(b) No person shall have in his or her possession or under his or her control any sawed-off shotgun or sawed-off rifle as defined in 11-47-2. Any person convicted of violating this subsection shall be punished by imprisonment for up to ten (10) years or by a fine of up to five thousand dollars ($5,000), or both, and for any subsequent conviction.

(c) No person shall have in his or her possession or under his or her control any firearm while the person delivers, possesses with intent to deliver, or manufactures a controlled substance. Any person convicted of violating this subsection shall be punished by imprisonment for not less than two (2) years nor more than twenty (20) years; and further provided, that the sentence shall be consecutive to any sentence the person may receive for the delivery, possession with intent to deliver, or the manufacture of the controlled substance. It shall not be a defense to a violation of this subsection that a person has a license or permit to carry or possess a firearm.

11-47-35. Sale of concealable weapons - Safety courses and tests - Review board - Issuance of permits to certain government officers. -- (a) (1) No seller shall deliver a pistol or revolver to a purchaser until seven (7) days shall have elapsed from twelve o'clock (12:00) noon of the day following the day of application for the purchase, and when delivered, the pistol or revolver shall be unloaded and securely wrapped, with the bill of sale to be enclosed within the wrapper with the pistol or revolver. Any citizen of the United States and/or lawful resident of this state who is twenty-one (21) years of age or older, and any nonresident member of the armed forces of the United States who is stationed in this state and who is twenty-one (21) years of age or older, may upon application purchase or acquire a pistol or revolver. At the time of applying for the purchase of a concealable firearm, the purchaser shall: (A) complete and sign in triplicate and deliver to the seller the application form described below, and in no case shall it contain the serial number of the pistol or revolver; and (B) shall present to the seller a pistol/revolver safety certificate issued by the department of environmental management. The certificate shall be retained in the possession of the buyer. The pistol/revolver safety certificate shall certify that the purchaser has completed a basic pistol/revolver safety course as shall be administered by the department of environmental management.

(Face of application form)

Application to Purchase Pistol or Revolver

Date . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Hour ........... A.M. P.M.

Name .........................................................................

Address ......................................................................

(Street and number) (City or town) (State)

Date of Birth . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Place of

Birth ........................................................................

Height . . . . . . . . . . . . . Weight . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Color

hair .........................................................................

Color eyes ...................................................................

Scars ........................................................................

Tattoos ......................................................................

Other identifying marks ......................................................

Are you a citizen of the United States .......................................

Are you a citizen of Rhode Island ............................................

How long .....................................................................

Where stationed ..............................................................

(Armed Forces only) ..........................................................

Have you ever been convicted of a crime of violence ..........................

(See 11-47-2)

Have you ever been adjudicated or under confinement as addicted to a

controlled substance .........................................................

Have you ever been adjudicated or under confinement for alcoholism ...........

Have you ever been confined or treated for mental illness ....................

From whom is pistol or revolver being purchased ..............................

Seller's address .............................................................

Seller's signature ...........................................................

Applicant's signature ........................................................

(See 11-47-23 for penalty for false information on this application)

(Reverse side of application form)

AFFIDAVIT: I certify that I have read and am familiar with the provisions of 11-47-1 - 11-47-55, inclusive, of the general laws of the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, and that I am aware of the penalties for violation of the provisions of the cited sections. I further certify that I have completed the required basic pistol/revolver safety course.

Signed ...................................................................

(over)

County of ....................................................................

State of Rhode Island

Subscribed and sworn before me this . . . . day of . . . . A.D. 1920.

Notary Public

................................................................

(2) The seller shall on the date of application, sign and forward by registered mail or by delivery in person, the original and duplicate copies of the application to the superintendent of the Rhode Island state police or the chief of police in the city or town in which the seller has his or her residence or place of business. The superintendent of the Rhode Island state police or the chief of police in the city or town in which the seller has his or her residence or place of business shall mark or stamp the original copy of the application form with the date and the time of receipt and return it by the most expeditious means to the seller. The triplicate copy duly signed by the seller shall within seven (7) days, be sent by him or her by registered mail to the attorney general. The seller shall retain the original copy duly receipted by the police authority to whom sent or delivered for a period of six (6) years with other records of the sale. It shall be the duty of the police authority to whom the duplicate copy of the application form is sent or delivered to make a background check of the applicant to ascertain whether he or she falls under the provisions of 11-47-5, 11-47-6, 11-47-7, or 11-47-23. If, after the lapse of seven (7) days from twelve o'clock (12:00) noon of the day following application, no disqualifying information has been received from the investigating police authority by the seller, he or she will deliver the firearm applied for to the applicant. Upon the finding of no disqualifying information under the provisions of the above cited sections of this chapter, and in no case later than thirty (30) days after the date of application, the duplicate and triplicate copies of the application will be destroyed. Retention of the duplicate and triplicate copies in violation of this act or any unauthorized use of the information contained therein by a person or agency shall be punishable by a fine of not more than one thousand dollars ($1,000). The provisions of this section shall not apply to bona fide sales at wholesale to duly licensed retail dealers, nor to purchases by retail dealers duly licensed under the provisions of 11-47-39.

(b) (1) The department of environmental management shall establish the basic pistol/revolver safety course required hereunder. Said safety course shall consist of not less than two (2) hours of instruction in the safe use and handling of pistols and revolvers and the course shall be available to buyers continually throughout the year at convenient times and places but at least monthly at locations throughout the state, or more frequently as required. Proficiency in the use of pistols or revolvers shall not be prerequisite to the issuance of the safety certificate. No person shall be required to complete the course more than once, provided however, that any person completing the course who is unable to produce the safety certificate issued by the department of environmental management shall be required to take the course again unless such person provides evidence to said department that he or she has successfully completed the course.

(2) The administration of the basic pistol/revolver safety course required by this section shall not exceed the cost of thirty-five thousand dollars ($35,000) in any fiscal year.

(c) After January 1, 1980, pProof of passage of the department of environmental management's basic hunter safety course will be equivalent to the pistol/revolver safety certificate mandated by this section.

(d) Any person who has reason to believe that he or she does not need the required handgun safety course may, at any time after May 8, 1980, apply by any written means to the department of environmental management to take an objective test on the subject of matter of the handgun safety course. The test shall be prepared, as well as an instruction manual upon which the test shall be based, by the department. The manual shall be made available by any means to the applicant who may, within the time limits for application, take the objective test at the department or at any location where the handgun safety course is being given. Any person receiving a passing grade on the test shall be issued a pistol/revolver safety certificate by the department.

(e) (1) There is hereby established within the department of environmental management a review board which shall consist of five (5) members as follows: one member from the Rhode Island house of representatives to be appointed by the speaker, one member from the Rhode Island senate to be appointed by the majority leader, two (2) members who are residents of the state representing the public, to be appointed by the governor, one of whom shall be from the Rhode Island rifle and revolver association, and the director of the department of environmental management or his or her designee. The legislative members of the review board shall serve so long as they shall remain members of the house from which they were appointed and until their successors are duly appointed and qualified. The board members representing the public shall serve at the pleasure of the governor. Vacancies shall be filled in like manner as the original appointments.

(2) It shall be the duty of the review board to monitor and evaluate the development of the basic pistol/revolver safety course required by this section, to ensure compliance with the provisions of subsection (b) of this section, and to periodically make or recommend such changes in the safety course as the review board deems advisable, not inconsistent with the provisions of this section. It shall further be the duty of the review board to decide all appeals from any decisions of the department of environmental management rendered pursuant to its responsibilities as set forth in subsection (b) of this section.

(3) There shall be no civil liability incurred and no cause of action of any nature shall arise against any member of the review board or its agents, servants, or employees as a result of any decisions made by the board or for any action taken by the board or its members, agents, servants, or employees.

(f) The following persons shall be issued basic pistol/revolver permits by the department of environmental management: sheriffs, deputy sheriffs, the superintendent and members of the state police, prison or jail wardens or their deputies, members of the city or town police force, members of the park police, conservation officers, and officers of the United States government authorized by law to carry a concealed firearm and, at the discretion of the department of environmental management, any person who can satisfactorily establish that he or she formerly held, such office or were so authorized.

(g) Any person who is serving in the army, navy, air force, marine corps or coast guard on active duty shall not be required to obtain a basic pistol/revolver safety certificate or basic pistol/revolver permit under this section so long as he or she remains on such active duty.

(h) Any person who is serving in the active reserve components of the army, navy, air force, marine corps or coast guard, or any person in an active duty paid status in the Rhode Island national guard, shall not be required to obtain a basic pistol/revolver safety certificate under this section so long as he or she remains in active status.

SECTION 12. Section 12-1.4-4 of the General Laws in Chapter 12-1.4 entitled "Citizens' Commission for the Safety and Care of the Elderly" is hereby amended to read as follows:

12-1.4-4. Membership. -- (a) The commission shall consist of nineteen (19) members, eight (8) of whom shall be older citizens appointed by the speaker and seven (7) of whom shall be older citizens appointed by the senate majority leader. Within thirty (30) days of June 24, 1986, tThe speaker shall appoint three (3) members and the majority leader shall appoint two (2) members for terms of three (3) years; the speaker shall appoint three (3) members and the majority leader shall appoint two (2) members for terms of two (2) years; and the speaker shall appoint two (2) members and the majority leader shall appoint three (3) members for a term of one year. For the year of enactment of this section the above These terms shall commence with the date of appointment and expire on the January 31 thereafter corresponding with the number of years of the term to which appointed thereafter, appointments shall be made for terms of three (3) years commencing on February 1 in the year of appointment and ending on January 31 in the third year thereafter. Any vacancy among the members shall be filled by the appointing authority for the remainder of the unexpired term.

(b) The remaining four (4) members of the commission shall consist of one member who shall be the president of the police chiefs' association or his or her designee; one member who shall be the attorney general or his or her designee; and one member who shall be the director of elderly affairs or his or her designee; one member who shall be a representative of the state police appointed by the superintendent of the state police; all four (4) of whom shall be appointed for a term of three (3) years.

(c) The members of the commission shall meet at the call of the speaker of the house and organize and shall select from among themselves a chair.

SECTION 13. Sections 12-1.5-8 and 12-1.5-10 of the General Laws in Chapter 12-1.5 entitled "DNA detection of Sexual and Violent Offenders" are hereby amended to read as follows:

12-1.5-8. DNA sample required upon conviction. -- (1) Conviction after effective date. Every person convicted of an offense as listed in 12-1.5-7 after the effective date of this section [June 29, 1998] shall have a DNA sample taken for analysis as follows:

(a) Every person who is sentenced to a term of confinement to prison, for an offense as listed in 12-1.5-7 shall not be released prior to the expiration of his/her maximum term of confinement unless and until a DNA sample has been taken;

(b) Every person convicted of an offense or sentenced to probation as listed in 12-1.5-7 shall have a DNA sample taken for analysis by the department of the health as a condition for any sentence which disposition will not involve an intake into prison.

(2) All DNA samples taken pursuant to this section shall be taken in accordance with regulations promulgated by the department of health.

12-1.5-10. Procedures for conduct, disposition and use of DNA analysis. -- (1) The department of health shall within one hundred and eighty (180) days of [June 29, 1998] promulgate procedures to be used in the collection, submission, identification, analysis, storage and disposition of DNA samples and typing results of DNA samples submitted under this chapter. These procedures shall meet or exceed the current standards for quality assurance and proficiency testing for DNA analysis issued by the FBI. All DNA sample typing results, all DNA records and all DNA samples shall be securely stored in the state of Rhode Island DNA database and DNA databank respectively, in the following manner:

(a) All DNA sample typing results and the DNA records shall be stored in a computer database after all personal identifiers have been removed. Further, these records shall be accessed only through the use of an encryption code. The encryption code shall be confidential and only those persons authorized by the department of health and charged with responsibilities under this act shall have access to these records and shall be given the encryption code.

(b) All DNA samples shall be securely locked, with a coded locking system, in a DNA databank at the department of health and only the director of the department of health and the head of the DNA laboratory shall have access to these DNA samples to carry out the provisions of this chapter.

(2) The department of health is authorized to contract with third parties for purposes of creating a DNA record only. Any third party contracting to carry out the functions of this act shall be subject to the same restrictions and requirements of this chapter, and DNA samples provided to third parties pursuant to this section shall have all personal identification removed.

(3) Except as otherwise provided in 12-1.5-11, DNA samples and DNA records collected under this chapter shall be used only for law enforcement identification purposes or to assist in the recovery of identification of human remains from disasters or for other humanitarian identification purposes, including identification of missing persons; and

(4) DNA samples and DNA records collected under this chapter shall never be used under the provisions of this chapter for the purpose of obtaining information about physical characteristics, traits or predispositions for disease.

SECTION 14. Section 12-13-21 of the General Laws in Chapter 12-13 entitled "Bail and Recognizance" is hereby amended to read as follows:

12-13-21. Registration of sureties. -- On and after July 1, 1983, nNo person proposing to become bail or surety in a felony case for hire or reward, either received or to be received, shall be accepted as the unless he or she shall have been approved and registered as a professional bondsman bondsperson by the presiding justice of the superior court or his or her designee. This approval and registration may be revoked at any time by the court or justice, and shall be revoked in case the a bondsman bondsperson fails for one hundred eighty (180) days after the issuance of process under 12-13-16 to satisfy in full the recognizance to which he or she is bound, or the amount of the original recognizance as determined in the discretion of the court, in accordance with 12-13-10. All professional bondsmen bondspersons shall be governed by rules which shall be established from time to time by the superior court.

SECTION 15. Section 12-19.1-2 of the General Laws in Chapter 12-19.1 entitled "Judicial Sentencing Disclosure Act" is hereby amended to read as follows:

12-19.1-2. Record of criminal sentences. -- The clerks of the district and superior courts shall maintain a register listing under the name of each judge, all criminal convictions over which the judge has presided, in chronological order, beginning on or after September 1, 1977, to include the following information:

(1) The name of the case;

(2) The charges against the defendant;

(3) The charges of which the defendant was convicted;

(4) The sentence handed down by the judge; and

(5) The date the sentence was handed down.

SECTION 16. Section 12-19.2-6 of the General Laws in Chapter 12-19.2 entitled "Sentencing to Life Imprisonment Without Parole" is hereby amended to read as follows:

12-19.2-6. Work release and furlough programs - Prohibited. -- A person serving a sentence of life imprisonment without parole shall not be eligible for participation in the work release program as set forth in 42-56-21, the furlough program as set forth in 42-56-18, or any other program in existence on June 18, 1991, or created thereafter which allows a prisoner to be released from the confinement of the prison facility to which the prisoner has been assigned.

SECTION 17. Section 12-19.3-2 of the General Laws in Chapter 12-19.3 entitled "Sentencing Standards" is hereby amended to read as follows:

12-19.3-2. Adoption of presumptive sentences. -- For eEach year commencing September 1, 1993, the justices of the superior court shall by majority vote, and with the approval of the supreme court, adopt as a rule of court presumptive sentences to be imposed upon defendants who have been found guilty after a trial. The rule shall establish a presumptive sentence or sentencing range for each category of felony which constituted more than five percent (5%) of the criminal caseload in the superior court during the preceding year and for such additional categories of felonies as the justices deem appropriate. It shall also set forth the criteria for evaluation upon which the presumptive sentences are based. Prior to implementation, the rule shall be forwarded to the supreme court for its approval. A complete listing of the presumptive sentences so established shall be made public no less than thirty (30) days prior to implementation.

SECTION 18. Section 12-25-1.1 of the General Laws in Chapter 12-25 entitled "Criminal Procedure" is hereby amended to read as follows:

12-25-1.1. Transition to the "Criminal Injuries Compensation Act of 1996". -- New cases filed on or after the effective date of this act [August 21, 1996] shall do so be filed through the Criminal Injuries Compensation Act of 1996, established pursuant to 12-25-16 through 12-25-30.

SECTION 19. Sections 12-26-3 and 12-26-5 of the General Laws in Chapter 12-26 entitled "Special Commission on Criminal Justice" are hereby amended to read as follows:

12-26-3. Organization. -- Forthwith upon passage of this chapter, tThe members of the commission shall meet at the call of the speaker of the house of representatives and organize and shall select from among themselves a chairman chairperson.

12-26-5. Annual report.-- The commission shall report its findings and recommendations to the general assembly annually, on or before April 1, commencing in 1978 of each year.

SECTION 20. Sections 12-29-1.2, 12-29-3 and 12-29-6 of the General Laws in Chapter 12-29 entitled "Domestic Violence Prevention Act" are hereby amended to read as follows:

12-29-1.2. Issuance of protective orders. -- Every order of this court made pursuant to 8-8.1-1 et seq., 12-29-1 et seq., and 15-15-1 et seq., after proper notice and hearing, enacted after October 1, 1999 shall contain the following language:

"THIS COURT HAD JURISDICTION OVER THE PARTIES AND THE SUBJECT MATTER WHEN IT ISSUED THIS PROTECTIVE ORDER. RESPONDENT WAS AFFORDED BOTH NOTICE AND OPPORTUNITY TO BE HEARD IN THE HEARING THAT GAVE RISE TO THIS ORDER. PURSUANT TO THE VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN ACT OF 1994, 18 USC 2265, THIS ORDER IS VALID AND ENFORCEABLE IN ALL FIFTY STATES, ANY TERRITORY OR POSSESSION OF THE UNITED STATES, THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, THE COMMONWEALTH OF PUERTO RICO AND TRIBAL LANDS."

12-29-3. Law enforcement officers - Duties and immunity.-- (a) The primary duty of law enforcement officers when responding to a domestic violence situation is to enforce the laws allegedly violated and to protect the victim.

(b) (1) When a law enforcement officer responds to a domestic violence situation and has probable cause to believe that a crime has been committed, the officer shall exercise arrest powers pursuant to 12-7-3 and 12-7-4, provided however, that the officer shall arrest and take into custody the alleged perpetrator of the crime when the officer has probable cause to believe that any of the following acts has occurred:

(i) A felonious assault;

(ii) An assault which has resulted in bodily injury to the victim, whether or not the injury is observable by the responding officer;

(iii) Physical action which was intended to cause another person reasonably to fear imminent serious bodily injury or death. Bodily injury means physical pain, illness, or an impairment of physical condition; or

(iv) Violation of a protective order and the violator has previous knowledge of the order and the terms thereof;

(v) Violation of a no-contact order issued pursuant to 12-29-4.

(2) The decision to arrest and charge shall not:

(i) Be dependent on the specific consent of the victim;

(ii) Consider the relationship of the parties; or

(iii) Be based solely on a request by the victim.

(3) An arrest without warrant made under this section shall be made within twenty-four (24) hours of the alleged crime.

(4) If an arrest without warrant cannot be made pursuant to this section, the officer shall advise the victim of the right to file a criminal complaint and shall seek a warrant for arrest if there is probable cause to do so.

(c) (1) When more than one family or household member involved in a domestic violence incident states a complaint, the officer shall investigate each complaint to determine whether there is probable cause to believe a crime has been committed. The officer shall not dismiss the incident by presuming two-party guilt.

(2) When the officer has probable cause to believe that family or household members have assaulted each other, the officer is not required to arrest both persons. The officer shall arrest the person whom the officer believes to be the primary physical aggressor.

(d) A law enforcement officer shall not be held liable for false arrest in any civil action, for an arrest based on probable cause or for enforcement in good faith of a court order issued pursuant to this chapter or pursuant to 15-15-1 et seq., 15-5-19, or 8-8.1-1, et seq.

(e) It shall be the responsibility of the law enforcement officer at the scene of a domestic violence incident to provide immediate assistance to the victim. This assistance shall include but not be limited to:

(1) Assisting the victim to obtain medical treatment if such is required, including transportation to an emergency medical treatment facility;

(2) Giving the victim notice of her or his right to obtain a protective order in family court pursuant to 15-15-1 et seq., or district court pursuant to 8-8.1-1 et seq. as appropriate according to the relationship of the parties. This notice shall be provided by handing the victim a copy of the following statement written in English, Portuguese, Spanish, Cambodian, Hmong, Laotian, Vietnamese, and French and by reading the same to that person when possible:

"If you are in need of medical treatment, you have the right to have the officer present drive you to the nearest hospital or otherwise assist you.

"If you believe that police protection is needed for your physical safety, you have the right to have the officer present remain at the scene until you and your children can leave or until your safety is otherwise obtained.

"You have the right to file a criminal complaint with the responding officer or your local police department if the officer has not arrested the perpetrator.

"Married/blood relatives/children in common. If your attacker is your spouse, former spouse, person to whom you are related by blood or marriage, or if you are not married to your attacker, but have a child in common, you have the right to go to family court and ask the court to issue:

(i) An order restraining your attacker from abusing you or your minor child;

(ii) An order awarding you exclusive use of your domicile; and

(iii) An order awarding you custody of your minor child(ren).

"Unmarried. If you are not married or related to your attacker, but have resided with him or her within the past three (3) years, or you or your attacker are in or have been in a substantive dating or engagement relationship within the past six (6) months, you have the right to go to district court and request:

(i) An order restraining your attacker from abusing you; and

(ii) An order directing your attacker to leave your household, unless he or she has the sole legal interest in the household;"

(3) Informing the victim of services available; and

(4) In cases where the officer has determined that no cause exists for an arrest, assistance shall also include:

(i) Remaining at the scene as long as there is danger to the safety of the person or until the person is able to leave the dwelling. The officer shall transport the person if no reasonable transportation is available; and

(ii) Informing the person that she or he has the right to file a criminal complaint with the responding officer or the local police department.

(f) An officer responding to a domestic violence call shall complete a domestic violence report pursuant to 12-29-8.

(g) (1) It shall be the responsibility of the attorney general to develop a model "Uniform Policy for Police Response to Domestic Violence" which is consistent with the provisions of this section. This written policy shall be developed after conferring with staff of the department of human services' domestic violence unit and with the council on domestic violence. The policy shall be developed within sixty (60) days of June 9, 1988 and shall be made available to any law enforcement agency.

(2) Each law enforcement agency shall develop a "Policy for Police Response to Domestic Violence" which is consistent with the Uniform Policy for Police Response to Domestic Violence developed by the attorney general and shall file a copy of the policy with the attorney general within sixty (60) days of receiving the model policy.

12-29-6. Training. -- (a) Effective with the class beginning after July 10, 1989, and for each class thereafter, tThe curriculum for new law enforcement officers presented at the Providence police academy, the state police academy, and the municipal police academy, shall include at least eight (8) hours of training on domestic violence issues. That training shall stress the enforcement of criminal law in domestic violence cases and shall include:

(1) The nature, extent, and causes of domestic violence;

(2) Legal rights of and remedies available to victims of domestic violence;

(3) Services and facilities available to victims and batterers;

(4) Legal duties imposed on police officers to make arrests and to offer protection and assistance; and

(5) Techniques for handling incidents of domestic violence that minimize the likelihood of injury to the officer and promote safety of the victim.

(b) Each law enforcement agency shall provide four (4) hours of in-service training to its officers on issues of domestic violence. This training shall stress the enforcement of criminal law in domestic violence cases and shall include:

(1) The nature, extent and causes of domestic violence;

(2) Legal rights of and remedies available to victims of domestic violence;

(3) Services and facilities available to victims and batterers;

(4) Legal duties imposed on police officers to make arrests and to offer protection and assistance; and

(5) Techniques for handling incidents of domestic violence that minimize the likelihood of injury to the officer and promote safety of the victim.

(c) There is hereby established within the court system a domestic violence training and monitoring unit, whose responsibilities shall include:

(1) Development of curricula for recruit and in-service training of law enforcement personnel;

(2) Delivery of that curricula at in-service trainings and at the academies;

(3) Development and delivery of training for medical providers concerning the requirements of this section;

(4) Development and delivery of training for probation officers in screening abusers for appropriate counseling; and

(5) Development of forms, as required in 12-29-8 and 12-29-9 and development of such other assessment tools as are necessary to monitor the implementation of this chapter.

(d) The administrative office of the supreme court shall establish an ongoing training program for judges, court personnel, bail commissioners, and clerks to inform them of the policies and procedures of this chapter.

SECTION 21. Section 12-30-10 of the General Laws in Chapter 12-30 entitled "Criminal Procedure" is hereby amended to read as follows:

12-30-10. Rules and regulations. -- The attorney general and the state police shall promulgate rules and regulations in furtherance of the administration of their responsibilities pursuant to this chapter. Those rules and regulations shall be submitted to the witness protection review board within six (6) months of July 12, 1990. Any amendment of or addition to those rules shall be submitted to the board within thirty (30) days of their promulgation.

SECTION 22. Section 13-8-14.1 of the General Laws in Chapter 13-8 entitled "Parole" is hereby amended to read as follows:

13-8-14.1. Parole standards. -- At least once each calendar year commencing on January 1, 1983, the parole board shall adopt standards to be utilized by the board in evaluating applications for parole of persons convicted of a criminal offense and sentenced to the adult correctional institutions. These standards shall establish, with the range of parole eligibility set by statute, the portion of a sentence which should be served upon conviction for each category of criminal offense prior to parole, and shall serve as guidelines for the board in making individual parole determinations. The board shall consider the applicable standard prior to rendering a decision on a parole application, and may make a determination at variance with that standard only upon a finding that the determination is warranted by individualized factors such as the character and criminal record of the applicant, the nature and circumstances of the offense or offenses for which the applicant was sentenced, the conduct of the applicant while incarcerated, and the criteria set forth in 13-8-14. In each case where the board grants an application prior to the time set by the applicable standard or denies an application on or after the time set by that standard, the board shall set forth in writing the rationale for its determination.

SECTION 23. Section 15-5-24.2 of the General Laws in Chapter 15-5 entitled "Divorce and Separation" is hereby amended to read as follows:

15-5-24.2. Visitation rights of grandparents whose child is denied or has failed to exercise rights. -- In any divorce proceeding commenced before or after May 12, 1981, the family court may, upon petition of a grandparent whose grandchild is a child of the marriage, grant reasonable visitation rights of the grandchild to the grandparent. The court may issue all necessary orders to enforce visitation rights. Once a grandparent has been granted reasonable visitation rights, notice of any petition and/or order providing for a change in custody or visitation shall be provided to the grandparent.

SECTION 24. Section 15-11.1-8 of the General Laws in Chapter 15-11.1 entitled "Full Enforcement of Support Obligations" is hereby amended to read as follows:

15-11.1-8. Reporting. -- On or before November 1, 1995, and d During each renewal period thereafter, all boards subject to this chapter shall provide to the department specified information, according to standards established by the department, about applicants for licensure and all current licensees. All boards subject to this chapter shall provide the specified information for only those current licensees that are residents of this state. The information to be provided must include all of the following information to the extent that such information is maintained by the board about the licensee:

(1) Name;

(2) Address of record;

(3) Federal employer identification number or social security number;

(4) Type of license;

(5) Effective date of license or renewal;

(6) Expiration date of license; and

(7) Active or inactive status.

[See 12-1-15 of the General Laws.]

SECTION 25. Section 15-11.1-9 of the General Laws in Chapter 15-11.1 entitled "Enforcement of Support Obligations" is hereby repealed.

15-11.1-9. Program review. -- In furtherance of the public policy of increasing collection of child support, the department shall report the following to the general assembly and the governor on January 31, 1996:

(1) The number of support obligors identified as licensees subject to this chapter;

(2) The number of support obligors identified by the department under this chapter who are not in compliance with a court order of support; and

(3) The number of actions taken by the department under this section and the results of those actions.

[See 12-1-15 of the General Laws.]

SECTION 26. Section 15-21-2 of the General Laws in Chapter 15-21 entitled "Child Support Lien Act" is hereby amended to read as follows:

15-21-2. Creation of lien. -- (a) A child support obligation or reimbursement order which is enforceable by the department of administration, division of taxation, child support enforcement in accordance with Title IV Part D of the Social Security Act, 42 U.S.C. 651 et seq., and which is unpaid in whole or in part shall, as of the date on which it was due, be a lien in favor of the obligee or assignee in an amount sufficient to satisfy unpaid child support, whether the amount due is a fixed sum or is accruing periodically. Once a child support lien arises, the lien shall incorporate any unpaid child support which may accrue in the future and shall not terminate except as provided in 15-21-4(f). The lien shall encumber all tangible and intangible property, whether real or personal, and rights to property, whether legal or equitable, belonging to the obligor including but not limited to the obligor's interest in any jointly held property. An interest in personal property acquired by the obligor after the child support lien arises shall be subject to the lien. Without limiting the forgoing, "property" as used herein shall also include insurance and workers' compensation payments.

(b) In any case after July 1, 1995, where a lien arises in jointly held property, a nonobligor joint party whose interest appears of record or is otherwise known to the department shall receive notice of intent to lien and may request an administrative hearing with the department to contest the scope of the property interests of the lien or may seek judicial review by motion to the family court. Service of the notice shall be made by first class mail.

[See 12-1-15 of the General Laws.]

SECTION 27. Section 16-21.2-5 of the General Laws in Chapter 16-21.2 entitled "The Rhode Island Substance Abuse Prevention Act" is hereby amended to read as follows:

16-21.2-5. Funding of substance abuse prevention program -- (a) Money to fund the Rhode Island Substance Abuse Prevention Act shall be appropriated from state general revenues and shall be raised by assessing an additional penalty of thirty dollars ($30.00) for all speeding violations as set forth in section 31-41-4(A), (B), (C) and (D), and section 31-43-5.1. The money shall be deposited as general revenues. The department of health may utilize up to ten percent (10%) of the sums appropriated for the purpose of administering the Rhode Island substance abuse prevention program.

(b) Grants made under this chapter shall not exceed money available in the substance abuse prevention program.

SECTION 28. Section 17-6-10 of the General Laws in Chapter 17-6 entitled "Secretary of State" is hereby amended to read as follows:

17-6-10. Availability of registration lists -- These lists shall be available by the secretary of state not later than September 1, 1976, in the first instance and not later than June 1 in any year thereafter.

SECTION 29. Section 18-4-27 of the General Laws in Chapter 18-4 entitled "Powers of Fiduciaries" is hereby amended to read as follows:

18-4-27. Validity of trusts -- (a) A trust which is otherwise valid and which has been created by a written instrument, including but not limited to a trust the principal of which is composed in whole or in part of real property, shall not be held invalid for any one or more of the following reasons:

(1) Because the settlor or another person or both possess the power to revoke, amend, alter, or modify the trust in whole or in part;

(2) Because the settlor or another person or both possess the power to appoint by deed or will the persons and organizations to whom the income shall be paid or the principal distributed;

(3) Because the settlor or another person or both possess the power to add to, or withdraw from, the trust all or any part of the principal or income at one or at different times;

(4) Because the settlor or another person or both possess the power to remove the trustee or trustees and appoint a successor trustee or trustees;

(5) Because the settlor has retained the right to receive all or part of the income of the trust during his life or for any part thereof; or

(6) Because the settlor is the sole trustee and the sole current beneficiary of the trust during his lifetime.

(b) This section shall apply to all trusts created by written instrument, whether created before or after August 11, 1995, except where the validity of the trust is in issue in a case pending on the date of passage of this section. August 11, 1995.

(c) The doctrine of merger shall not apply to invalidate an otherwise valid revocable or irrevocable trust unless the legal title to the trust property and the entire beneficial interest, including future and contingent beneficial interests, become irrevocably united in one person who is not under an incapacity.

(d) If the beneficiary of a spendthrift trust having the entire beneficial interest in the trust property becomes without his or her consent the sole trustee, the beneficiary may procure the appointment of a new trustee and have the trust reconstituted.

(e) Nothing contained herein shall affect the validity of those accounts, including but not limited to bank accounts, share accounts, deposits, certificates of deposit, savings certificates, and other similar arrangements, heretofore or hereafter established at any bank, savings and loan association, or credit union by one or more persons, in trust for one or more other persons.

SECTION 30. Section 28-7-4 of the General Laws in Chapter 28-7 entitled "Labor Relations Act" is hereby amended to read as follows:

28-7-4. Labor relations board -- Creation -- Appointment, qualifications, terms, and removal of members -- There is hereby created in the department of labor and training a board to be known as the Rhode Island state labor relations board which shall be composed of seven (7) members who shall be appointed by the governor, by and with the advice and consent of the senate. Each member of the board at the time of appointment shall be a citizen of the United States and a resident of the state of Rhode Island, and shall be a qualified elector in the state. Three (3) members of the board shall be representatives of labor, three (3) members shall represent management, including at least one (1) representative of local government and one (1) member shall be a representative of the public generally. No member of the board during this period of service as such shall hold any other public office. The members of the board shall be appointed for terms of six (6) years each, except that any individual chosen to fill a vacancy shall be appointed for the unexpired term of the member whom the newly appointed member succeeds. The governor shall designate one member to serve as chairperson of the board. Any member of the board may be removed by the governor for inefficiency, neglect of duty, misconduct, or malfeasance in office, and for no other cause, after being given a copy of the charges and an opportunity to be publicly heard in person or by counsel.

The existing five (5) member board shall cease to exist upon passage of this act [August 6, 1996] (except as provided below) and shall be replaced by the seven (7) member board, created herein. All new proceedings or business pending before the five (5) member board at the time of passage of this act [August 6, 1996] shall be decided by the seven (7) member board, except for those proceedings presently pending before the existing board which have been completely heard by July 20, 1996, are closed by that date and are pending decision. Decisions shall be rendered by the existing board on these cases within ninety (90) days from passage of this act [August 6, 1996]. If no decision has been rendered by that time, such cases shall be decided by the new seven (7) member board.

SECTION 31. Sections 28-12-3 and 28-12-21 of the General Laws in Chapter 28-12 entitled "Minimum Wages" are hereby amended to read as follows:

28-12-3. Minimum wages. -- Every employer shall pay to each of his or her employees wages at a rate not less than the minimum hereinafter specified in this section: effective April 1, 1991, and thereafter, at a rate not less than four dollars and forty-five cents ($4.45) per hour except as hereinafter specified, provided, however, that the minimum wage commencing September 1, 1996 shall be four dollars and seventy-five cents ($4.75) per hour and that the minimum wage commencing January 1, 1997 shall be five dollars and fifteen cents ($5.15) per hour. Provided, however, that the minimum wage commencing July 1, 1999 shall be five dollars and sixty five cents ($5.65) per hour.

28-12-21. More favorable laws preserved. -- Any standards relating to minimum wages, maximum hours, overtime compensation, or other working conditions in effect under any other law of this state on May 2, 1956, which are more favorable to employees than those applicable to those employees under this chapter or the regulations and orders issued hereunder, shall not be deemed to be amended, rescinded, or otherwise affected by this chapter but shall continue in full force and effect and may be enforced as provided by law unless and until they are specifically superseded by standards more favorable to those employees by operation or in accordance with regulations or orders issued under this chapter.

SECTION 32. Sections 28-29-2, 28-29-8 and 28-29-26 of the General Laws in Chapter 28-29 entitled "Workers' Compensation-General Provisions" are hereby amended to read as follows:

28-29-2. Definitions. -- In chapters 29 - 38 of this title, unless the context otherwise requires:

(1) "Department" means the department of labor and training.

(2) "Director" means the director of labor and training or his or her designee unless specifically stated otherwise.

(3) (i) "Earnings capacity" means the weekly straight time earnings which an employee could receive if the employee accepted an actual offer of suitable alternative employment. Earnings capacity can also be established by the court based on evidence of ability to earn, including, but not limited to, a determination of the degree of functional impairment and/or disability, that an employee is capable of employment. The court may, in its discretion, take into consideration the performance of the employee's duty to actively seek employment in scheduling the implementation of the reduction. The employer need not identify particular employment before the court can direct an earnings capacity adjustment.

In the event that an employee returns to light duty employment while partially disabled, an earnings capacity shall not be set based upon actual wages earned until the employee has successfully worked at light duty for a period of at least thirteen (13) weeks.

(ii) As used under the provisions of this title, the term "Functional impairment" means an anatomical or functional abnormality existing after the date of maximum medical improvement as determined by a medically or scientifically demonstrable finding and based upon the most recent edition of the American Medical Association's Guide to the Evaluation of Permanent Impairment or comparable publications of the American Medical Association.

(iii) In the event that an employee returns to employment at an average weekly wage equal to the employee's pre-injury earnings exclusive of overtime, the employee will be presumed to have regained his/her earning capacity.

(4) "Employee" means any person who has entered into the employment of or works under contract of service or apprenticeship with any employer, except that in the case of a city or town other than the city of Providence it shall only mean that class or those classes of employees as may be designated by a city, town, or regional school district in a manner herein provided to receive compensation under chapters 29 - 38 of this title. It shall not include any partner, sole proprietor, or the president, one vice president, secretary and/or treasurer of a corporation, or a person whose employment is of a casual nature, and who is employed otherwise than for the purpose of the employer's trade or business, or a person whose services are voluntary or who performs charitable acts, nor shall it include the members of the regularly organized fire and police departments of any town or city; and whenever a contractor has contracted with the state, a city, town, or regional school district any person employed by that contractor in work under contract shall not be deemed an employee of the state, city, town, or regional school district as the case may be. Any person who on or after January 1, 1999, is an employee and becomes a corporate officer shall remain an employee, for purposes of these chapters, unless and until coverage under this act is waived pursuant to 28-29-8(b). In the case of a person whose services are voluntary or who performs charitable acts, any benefit received, in the form of monetary remuneration or otherwise, shall be reportable to the appropriate taxation authority but shall not be deemed to be wages earned under contract of hire for purposes of qualifying for benefits under chapters 29 - 38 of this title. Any reference to an employee who had been injured shall, where the employee is dead, include a reference to his or her dependents as hereinafter defined, or to his or her legal representatives, or, where he or she is a minor or incompetent, to his or her conservator or guardian. A "Seasonal occupation" means those occupations in which work is performed on a seasonal basis of not more than sixteen (16) weeks.

(5) "Employer" shall include any person, copartnership, corporation, or voluntary association, and the legal representative of a deceased employer; it shall include the state, and the city of Providence. It shall include also each city, town, and regional school district therein that shall vote or accept the provisions of chapters 29 - 38 of this title in the manner herein provided.

(6) "General or special employer":

(i) A general employer shall include but shall not be limited to temporary help companies and employee leasing companies and shall mean a person who for consideration and as the regular course of its business supplies an employee with or without vehicle to another person.

(ii) A special employer shall mean a person who contracts for services with a general employer for the use of an employee, a vehicle, or both.

(iii) Whenever there be a general employer and special employer wherein the general employer supplies to the special employer an employee and the general employer pays or is obligated to pay the wages or salaries of the supplied employee, then and in that event, notwithstanding the fact that direction and control shall be in the special employer and not the general employer, the general employer, if it be subject to the provisions of the Workers' Compensation Act or has accepted that Act, shall be deemed to be the employer as set forth in subdivision (5) and both the general and special employer shall be the employer for purposes of 28-29-17 and 28-29-18.

(7) (i) "Injury" means and refers to personal injury to an employee arising out of and in the course of his or her employment connected therewith and referable thereto.

(ii) An injury to an employee while voluntarily participating in a private, group, or employer sponsored carpool, vanpool, commuter bus service, or other rideshare program, having as its sole purpose the mass transportation of employees to and from work shall not be deemed to have arisen out of and in the course of employment. Nothing in the foregoing shall be held to deny benefits under chapters 29 - 38 and chapter 47 of this title to employees such as drivers, mechanics, and others who receive remuneration for their participation in the rideshare program. Provided, however, that the foregoing shall not bar the right of an employee to recover against an employer and/or driver for tortious misconduct.

(8) "Maximum medical improvement" means a point in time when any medically determinable physical or mental impairment as a result of injury has become stable and when no further treatment is reasonably expected to materially improve the condition. Neither the need for future medical maintenance nor the possibility of improvement or deterioration resulting from the passage of time and not from the ordinary course of the disabling condition, nor the continuation of a pre-existing condition shall preclude a finding of maximum medical improvement. A finding of maximum medical improvement by the workers' compensation court may be reviewed only where it is established that an employee's condition has substantially deteriorated or improved.

(9) "Physician" shall mean medical doctor, surgeon, dentist, licensed psychologist, chiropractor, osteopath, podiatrist, and optometrist, as the case may be.

(10) "Suitable alternative employment" means employment or an actual offer of employment which the employee is physically able to perform and will not exacerbate the employee's health condition and which bears a reasonable relationship to the employee's qualifications, background, education, and training. The employee's age alone shall not be considered in determining the suitableness of the alternative employment.

28-29-8. Election by exempt employers to be subject to law. -- (a) Employers exempted by 28-29-7 may come within chapters 29 - 38 of this title by election. The election on the part of the employer shall be made by filing with the director a written statement to the effect that he or she accepts the provisions of those chapters, the filing of which statement shall operate to subject the employer to the provisions of those chapters and all acts amendatory thereof for the term of one year from the date of the filing of the statement, and thereafter, without further act on his or her part, for successive terms of one year each, unless the employer shall, at least sixty (60) days prior to the expiration of that first or any succeeding year file with the director a notice in writing to the effect that he or she withdraws his or her election to be subject to the provisions of those chapters and shall give reasonable notice thereof to his workers; provided, however, that any employer now subject to the provisions of those chapters shall not be required to file a further written statement of acceptance or hereafter post notices of his or her acceptance.

(b) Any employer, including any corporation officer, who is on December 31, 1998 subject to the provisions of chapters 29 - 38 of this title and who has not waived his or her coverage pursuant to 28-29-17 or by election, shall continue to be so subject to the provisions of those chapters and all acts amendatory thereof unless or until he or she withdraws in writing his or her election to be subject to the provisions of those chapters pursuant to the provisions of 28-29-8(a).

28-29-26. Supervision of enforcement. -- (a) Department of labor and training. The director as provided for in chapters 29 - 38 of this title and chapter 16 of title 42, shall have supervision over the enforcement of the provisions of those chapters, and the director shall have the power and authority to adopt and enforce all reasonable rules, regulations, and orders necessary and suitable to the administration of the department's responsibilities as described in those chapters.

(b) Workers' compensation court. (1) The workers' compensation court, as provided for in chapters 29 - 38 of this title, shall have supervision over the enforcement of the provisions of the chapters, and shall have the power and authority to adopt and enforce all reasonable rules, regulations, and orders necessary and suitable to the administration of its responsibilities described in the chapters. The court shall remain judicially and administratively independent. The Workers' compensation court shall have original jurisdiction over all civil actions filed pursuant to 28-36-15 and 28-37-28.

(2) All disputes pending before the department of workers' compensation on September 1, 1990 which have been scheduled for an informal hearing to be held on or after September 1, 1990 pursuant to 28-33-9 shall be heard by the department no later than December 31, 1990. All disputes pending before the department on January 2, 1991 which have not been heard and concluded shall be transferred to the workers' compensation court which shall schedule a pretrial conference in accordance with 28-35-20 and the rules and regulations of the workers' compensation court. Thereafter, the matters shall follow the procedure set forth in chapter 35 of this title.

(3) As of September 1, 1990, aAny petition arising from any dispute regardless of date of injury, unless specifically excepted, shall be filed with the administrator of the workers' compensation court in accordance with chapter 35 of this title and any rules and regulations promulgated by the workers' compensation court.

(4) The enactment of this subsection shall not affect the rights of the parties established by any existing memorandum of agreement, suspension agreement and receipt, preliminary determination of the department of workers' compensation, order or decree, or any existing right to the payment of compensation acquired pursuant to 28-29-6 or 28-35-9.

SECTION 33. Sections 28-30-4.1, 28-30-7 and 28-30-22 of the General Laws in Chapter 28-30 entitled "Workers' Compensation Court" are hereby amended to read as follows:

28-30-4.1. Deputy administrator - Appointment and term of office. -- There shall be a deputy administrator of the workers' compensation court who shall be appointed by the administrator of the workers' compensation court with the approval of a majority of the judges. Beginning in January, 1990 and during the month of January in every twelfth (12th) year thereafter, the administrator, with the approval of a majority of the judges, shall appoint a deputy administrator of the court to serve for a period of twelve (12) years, commencing on the first day of February next following, and thereafter until his or her successor is appointed and qualified. Upon May 3, 1979, tThe administrator with the approval of a majority of the commissioners shall appoint a deputy administrator to serve until the first day of February in 1990 and thereafter until his or her successor is appointed and qualified.

28-30-7. Clerical assistance to administrator. -- The administrator with the approval of the chief judge of the workers' compensation court may employ such clerical assistance as he or she may require for copying, recording, indexing, and attending upon the files of the court. In addition, on July 11, 1990, t The administrator with the approval of the chief judge shall appoint the following additional support staff: two (2) court secretaries, three (3) hearings reporters, five (5) assistant administrator/clerks, two (2) clerk secretaries, and two (2) data entry clerks. The compensation for the additional staff created by this section shall be provided from the workers' compensation administrative fund established by 28-37-1.

28-30-22. Medical advisory board. -- (a) The chief judge of the workers' compensation court, in consultation with the appropriate medical or professional association, shall appoint a medical advisory board which shall serve at the chief judge's pleasure and consist of eleven (11) members in the following specialties: one orthopedic surgeon; one neurologist; one neurosurgeon; one physiatrist; one chiropractor; one physical therapist; one internist; one psychiatrist or psychologist; and three (3) ad hoc physician members appointed at the discretion of the chief judge. Members of the board shall be reimbursed two hundred dollars ($200) per day served in the discharge of the board's duties, not to exceed five thousand dollars ($5,000) per member in any year. The chief judge shall designate the chairperson of the board.

(b) The chief judge is authorized, with the advice of the medical advisory board, to do the following:

(1) (i) Adopt and review protocols and standards of treatment for compensable injury, which shall address types, frequency, modality, duration, and termination of treatment, and types and frequency of diagnostic procedures.

(ii) Within thirty (30) days of its establishment, the medical advisory board shall prepare a recommended standard for the consideration and weighing by the court of medical evidence, including but not limited to medical test results, objective clinical findings, subjective complaints supported by tests for inconsistency, and purely subjective complaints, with the purposes of assuring treatment and compensation for legitimate compensable injuries, reducing litigation, inefficiency, and delay in court proceedings, and deterring false or exaggerated claims of injury. The standards shall be applicable to proceedings before the workers' compensation court, including specifically those to determine the nature and extent of injury and the achievement of maximum medical improvement, and shall be effective in all proceedings when adopted by the court.

(2) Approve and promulgate rules, regulations, and procedures concerning the appointment and qualifications of comprehensive independent health care review teams which would be composed of any combination of one or more health care provider(s), rehabilitation expert(s), physical therapist(s), occupational therapist(s), psychologist(s), and vocational rehabilitation counselor(s).

(3) Approve and administer procedures to disqualify or disapprove medical service providers and maintain the approved provider list.

(4) Appoint an administrator of the medical advisory board.

(5) Approve and promulgate rules, regulations, and procedures concerning the appointment and qualifications of impartial medical examiners.

(6) Annually review the performance of each comprehensive independent health care review team and impartial medical examiner.

(c) The administrator of the medical advisory board is authorized and directed to establish terms and conditions for comprehensive independent health care review teams and impartial medical examiners to apply for approval by the medical advisory board and to perform such other duties as directed by the board.

(d) Any reference to an impartial medical examiner in chapters 29 - 38 of this title shall be deemed to include the impartial medical examiners and comprehensive independent health care review teams referred to in subsection (b).

(e) Disqualification of medical care providers. (1) Every health care provider licensed in the state of Rhode Island shall on May 18, 1992 be presumed to be qualified to provide health care services for injuries compensable under this title, and may recover costs of treatment consistent with established fee and cost schedules. The administrator of the medical advisory board is thereafter authorized to disqualify and/or suspend any qualified provider based upon one or more of the following:

(i) The violation of the protocols and standards of care established by the medical advisory board;

(ii) The filing of affidavits that are untimely, inadequate, incomplete, or untruthful;

(iii) The provision of unnecessary and/or inappropriate treatment;

(iv) A pattern of violation and/or evasion of an approved fee schedule;

(v) The censure or discipline of the provider by the licensing body of the provider's profession;

(vi) The billing of, or pursuing collection efforts against, the employee for treatment or diagnostic tests causally related to an injury not deemed noncompensable by the workers' compensation court.

(2) Upon disqualification or during suspension, the provider shall not be permitted to recover any costs or fees for treatment provided under this title. The appropriate body with professional disciplinary authority over the provider shall be notified of any such action. Appeal of disqualification or suspension shall be to the medical advisory board, with final review by the workers' compensation court.

(3) If unnecessary or inappropriate treatment is provided by an entity affiliated with the treating physician, the administrator of the medical advisory board may increase the penalty for a violation.

(4) This section shall not prevent the recovery of reasonable costs for immediate emergency care rendered by a provider.

(f) As a guide to the interpretation and application of this section, the policy and intent of this legislature is declared to be that every person who suffers a compensable injury with resulting disability should be provided with high quality medical care and the opportunity to return to gainful employment as soon as possible with minimal dependence on compensation awards.

SECTION 34. Sections 28-33-17, 28-33-17.3, 28-33-18, 28-33-18.3, 28-33-20.1, 28-33-44 and 28-33-46 of the General Laws in Chapter 28-33 entitled "Workers' Compensation Benefits" are hereby amended to read as follows:

28-33-17. Weekly compensation for total incapacity - Permanent total disability - Dependents' allowances. -- (a) (1) While the incapacity for work resulting from the injury is total, the employer shall pay the injured employee a weekly compensation equal to seventy-five percent (75%) of his or her average weekly spendable base wages, earnings, or salary, as computed pursuant to the provisions of 28-33-20; but not more than sixty percent (60%) of the state average weekly wage of individuals in covered employment under the provisions of the Rhode Island Employment Security Act as computed and established by the Rhode Island department of labor and training, annually, on or before May 31 of each year, under the provisions of 28-44-6(a); provided, that effective September 1, 1974 the maximum rate for weekly compensation for total disability shall not exceed sixty-six and two-thirds percent (66 2/3%) of the state average weekly wage as computed and established under the provisions of 28-44-6(a); and provided, further, that effective September 1, 1975, the maximum rate for weekly compensation for total disability shall not exceed one hundred percent (100%) of the state average weekly wage as computed and established under the provisions of 28-44-6(a); and, also, provided, if the maximum weekly benefit rate is not an exact multiple of one dollar ($1.00), then the rate shall be raised to the next higher multiple of one dollar ($1.00).

(2) The average weekly wage computed and established under 28-44-6(a) shall be applicable to injured employees whose injury occurred on or after September 1, 1975 and shall be applicable for the full period during which compensation is payable.

(3) (i) Spendable earnings shall be the employee's gross average weekly wages, earnings, or salary, including any gratuities reported as income, reduced by an amount determined to reflect amounts which would be withheld from the wages, earnings, or salary under federal and state income tax laws, and under the Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA), 26 U.S.C. 3101 et seq., relating to social security and Medicare taxes. In all cases, it is to be assumed that the amount withheld would be determined on the basis of expected liability of the employee for tax for the taxable year in which the payments are made without regard to any itemized deductions but taking into account the maximum number of personal exemptions allowable.

(ii) Each November 1 and March 1, the director shall publish tables of the average weekly wage and seventy-five percent (75%) of spendable earnings that are to be in effect on the following January 1. These tables shall be conclusive for the purposes of converting an average weekly wage into seventy-five percent (75%) of spendable earnings. In calculating spendable earnings the director shall have discretion to exempt funds assigned to third parties by order of the family court pursuant to 8-10-3 and funds designated for payment of liens pursuant to 28-33-27 upon submission of supporting evidence.

(b) (1) In the following cases, it shall for the purpose of this section be conclusively presumed that the injury resulted in permanent total disability:

(i) The total and irrecoverable loss of sight in both eyes or the reduction to one-tenth (1/10) or less of normal vision with glasses;

(ii) The loss of both feet at or above the ankle;

(iii) The loss of both hands at or above the wrist;

(iv) The loss of one hand and one foot;

(v) An injury to the spine resulting in permanent and complete paralysis of the legs or arms; and

(vi) An injury to the skull resulting in incurable imbecility or insanity.

(2) In all other cases, total disability shall be determined only if, as a result of the injury, the employee is physically unable to earn any wages in any employment; provided, however, that in cases where manifest injustice would otherwise result, total disability shall be determined when an employee proves, taking into account the employee's age, education, background, abilities, and training, that he or she is unable on account of his or her compensable injury to perform his or her regular job and is unable to perform any alternative employment. The court may deny total disability under this subsection without requiring the employer to identify particular alternative employment.

(c) (1) Where the employee has persons conclusively presumed to be dependent upon him or her or in fact so dependent, the sum of fifteen dollars ($15.00) shall be added to the weekly compensation payable for total incapacity for each person wholly dependent on the employee, except that the sum of twenty dollars ($20.00) shall be added for those receiving benefits under 28-33-12, but in no case shall the aggregate of those amounts exceed eighty percent (80%) of the average weekly wage of the employee, except that there shall be no limit for those receiving benefits under 28-33-12.

(2) The dependency allowance shall be in addition to the compensation benefits for total disability otherwise payable under the provisions of this section. The dependency allowance shall be increased if the number of persons dependent upon the employee increases during the time that weekly compensation benefits are being received.

(3) For the purposes of this section the following persons shall be conclusively presumed to be wholly dependent for support upon an employee:

(i) A wife upon a husband with whom she is living at the time of his injury, but only while she is not working for wages during her spouse's total disability.

(ii) A husband upon a wife with whom he is living at the time of her injury, but only while he is not working for wages during his spouse's total disability.

(iii) Children under the age of eighteen (18) years, or over that age but physically or mentally incapacitated from earning, if living with the employee, or, if the employee is bound or ordered by law, decree, or order of court, or by any other lawful requirement, to support the children, although living apart from them. Provided, however, that the payment of dependency benefits to a dependent child over the age of eighteen (18) years shall continue as long as that child is satisfactorily enrolled as a full-time student in an educational institution or an educational facility duly accredited or approved by the appropriate state educational authorities at the time of enrollment. Those payments shall not be continued beyond the age of twenty-three (23) years. Children, within the meaning of this paragraph, shall also include any children of the injured employee conceived but not born at the time of the employee's injury, and the compensation herein provided for shall be payable on account of any such children from the date of their birth.

(d) "Dependents" as provided in this section shall not include the spouse of the injured employee except as provided above in subdivisions (c)(3)(i) and (ii). In all other cases questions of dependency shall be determined in accordance with the facts as the facts may be at the time of the injury.

(e) The court or any judge thereof may in its or his or her discretion order the insurer or self-insurer to make payment of the nine dollars ($9.00) or fifteen dollars ($15.00) for those receiving benefits under 28-33-12 directly to the dependent.

(f) (1) Where any employee's incapacity is total and has extended beyond fifty-two (52) weeks, regardless of the date of injury, payments made to all totally incapacitated employees shall be increased as of May 10, 1991, and annually on the tenth of May thereafter so long as the employee remains totally incapacitated. The increase shall be by an amount equal to the total percentage increase in annual consumer price index, United States city average for urban wage earners and clerical workers, as formulated and computed by the bureau of labor statistics of the United States department of labor for the period of March 1 to February 28 each year.

(2) Provided, however, that if the employee thereafter is found to be only partially incapacitated, the weekly compensation benefit paid to the employee shall be equal to the payment in effect prior to his or her most recent cost of living adjustment.

(3) The word "Index" as used in this section refers to the consumer price index, United States city average for urban wage earners, clerical workers, as that index is formulated and computed by the bureau of labor statistics of the United States department of labor.

(4) The May 10, 1991 increase shall be based upon the total percentage increase, if any, in the annual consumer price index for the period of March 1, 1990 to February 28, 1991. Thereafter, increases shall be made on May 10 annually, based upon the percentage increase, if any, in the index for the period March 1 to February 28.

(5) The above computations shall be made by the director of labor and training and promulgated to insurers and employers making payments required by this section. Increases shall be paid by insurers and employers without further order of the court. If payment payable under this section is not paid within fourteen (14) days after the employer or insurer has been notified or it becomes due, whichever is later, there shall be added to the unpaid payment an amount equal to twenty percent (20%) thereof, which shall be paid at the same time as, but in addition to the payment.

(6) This section shall apply only to payment of weekly indemnity benefits to employees as described in subsection (f)(1), and shall not apply to specific compensation payments for loss of use or disfigurement or payment of dependency benefits or any other benefits payable under the Workers' Compensation Act.

28-33-17.3. Fraud and abuse. -- (a) (1) The workers' compensation court is authorized and directed to impose sanctions and penalties necessary to maintain the integrity of and to maintain the high standards of professional conduct in the workers' compensation system. All pleadings related to proceedings under chapters 29 - 38 of this title shall be considered an attestation by counsel that valid grounds exist for the position taken and that the pleading is not interposed for delay.

(2) If any judge determines that any proceedings have been brought, prosecuted, or defended by an employer, insurer, or their counsel without reasonable grounds, then:

(i) The whole cost of the proceedings shall be assessed upon the employer, insurer, or counsel, whoever is responsible; and

(ii) If a subsequent order requires that additional compensation be paid, a penalty of double the amount of retroactive benefits ordered shall be paid to the employee and the penalty shall not be included in any formula utilized to establish premium rates for workers' compensation insurance.

(3) If any judge determines that any proceedings have been brought or defended by an employee or his or her counsel without reasonable grounds, the whole cost of the proceedings shall be assessed against the employee or counsel, whoever is responsible.

(4) The court shall determine whether an action or defense is frivolous or conduct giving rise to the action or defense was unreasonable. Where the amount at issue is less than the actual attorneys' fees of the parties combined, the court shall exercise particular vigilance. Nothing in this subsection, however, is intended to discourage prompt payment in full of all amounts required to be paid.

(5) The appropriate body with professional disciplinary authority over the attorney shall be notified of the action.

(b) (1) It is unlawful to do any of the following:

(i) Make or cause to be made any knowingly false or fraudulent material statement or material representation for the purpose of obtaining or denying any compensation;

(ii) Present or cause to be presented any knowingly false or fraudulent written or oral material statement in support of, or in opposition to, any claim for compensation or petition regarding the continuation, termination, or modification of benefits;

(iii) Knowingly assist, aid and abet, solicit, or conspire with any person who engages in an unlawful act under this section;

(iv) Make or cause to be made any knowingly false or fraudulent statements with regard to entitlement to benefits with the intent to discourage an injured worker from claiming benefits or pursuing a claim;

(v) Wilfully misrepresent or fail to disclose any material fact in order to obtain workers' compensation insurance at less than the proper rate for the insurance including, but not limited to, intentionally misleading or failing to disclose information to an insurer regarding the appropriate rate classification of an employee; or

(vi) Willfully fail to provide a lower rate adjustment favorable to an employer as required by an approved experience rating plan or regulations promulgated by the insurance commissioners; or

(vii) Wilfully fail to report or provide false or misleading information regarding ownership changes as required by an approved experience rating plan or regulations promulgated by the insurance commissioner.

(2) For the purposes of this section, "Statement" includes, but is not limited to, any endorsement of a benefit check, application for insurance coverage, oral or written statement, proof of injury, bill for services, diagnosis, prescription, hospital or provider records, x-rays, test results, or other documentation offered as proof of, or in the absence of, a loss, injury, or expense.

(3) If it is determined that any person concealed or knowingly failed to disclose that which is required by law to be revealed, knowingly gave or used perjured testimony or false evidence, knowingly made a false statement of fact, participated in the creation or presentation of evidence which he or she knows to be false, or otherwise engaged in conduct in violation of subsection (b)(1), that person shall be subject in criminal proceedings to a fine and/or penalty not exceeding fifty thousand dollars ($50,000), or double the value of the fraud, whichever is greater, or by imprisonment up to five (5) years in state prison or both.

(4) There shall be a general amnesty until July 1, 1992 for any person receiving compensation under chapters 29 - 38 of this title, to the extent compensation has been voluntarily reduced or relinquished by the employee prior to that date.

(c) The director of labor and training shall establish a form, in consultation with the attorney general, to be sent to all workers who are presently receiving benefits and those for whom first reports of injury are filed in the future which shall give the employee notice that the endorsement of a benefit check sent pursuant to 28-35-39 is the employee's affirmation that he or she is qualified to receive benefits under the Workers' Compensation Act. The insurers and self-insured employers are directed to send the form to all workers receiving benefits as of May 18, 1992.

(d) Any employer, or in any case where the employer is a corporation, the president, vice president, secretary, and treasurer thereof, previously determined through civil or criminal adjudication in the last ten (10) years to have violated this section or 28-36-15, shall be guilty of a felony for any subsequent knowingly failing to secure compensation, and upon conviction, shall be subject to imprisonment of up to one year, a fine not exceeding ten thousand dollars ($10,000), or both. In any case where the employer is a corporation, the president, vice president, secretary, and treasurer thereof, shall be severally liable for the fine or subject to imprisonment, provided they had knowledge of the prior violation.

28-33-18. Weekly compensation for partial incapacity. -- (a) While the incapacity for work resulting from the injury is partial, the employer shall pay the injured employee a weekly compensation equal to seventy-five percent (75%) of the difference between his or her spendable average weekly base wages, earnings, or salary before the injury as computed pursuant to the provisions of 28-38-20, and his or her spendable weekly wages, earnings, salary, or earnings capacity thereafter, but not more than the maximum weekly compensation rate for total incapacity as set forth in 28-33-17. The provisions of this section are subject to the provisions of 28-33-18.2.

(b) For all injuries occurring on or after September 1, 1990, where an employee's condition has reached maximum medical improvement and the incapacity for work resulting from the injury is partial, while the incapacity for work resulting from the injury is partial, the employer shall pay the injured employee a weekly compensation equal to seventy percent (70%) of the weekly compensation rate as set forth in subsection (a). The court may, in its discretion, take into consideration the performance of the employee's duty to actively seek employment in scheduling the implementation of the reduction. The provisions of this subsection are subject to the provisions of 28-33-18.2.

(c) (1) Earnings capacity determined from degree of functional impairment pursuant to 28-29-2(3) shall be determined as a percentage of the whole person based on the most recent addition of the American Medical Association Guides To The Value Of Permanent Impairment. Earnings capacity shall be calculated from the percentage of impairment as follows:

(i) For impairment of five percent (5%) or less, earnings capacity shall be calculated so as to extinguish one hundred percent (100%) of weekly benefits.

(ii) For impairment of twenty-five percent (25%) or less, but greater than five percent (5%), earnings capacity shall be calculated so as to extinguish one hundred percent (100%) less the percent of impairment of weekly benefits.

(iii) For impairment of fifty percent (50%) or less, but greater than twenty-five percent (25%), earnings capacity shall be calculated so as to extinguish one hundred percent (100%) less one point two five (1.25) times the percent of impairment of weekly benefits.

(iv) For impairment of sixty-five percent (65%) or less, but greater than fifty percent (50%), earnings capacity shall be calculated so as to extinguish one hundred percent (100%) less one point five (1.5) times the percent of impairment of weekly benefits.

(2) An earnings capacity adjustment under this section shall be applicable only when the employee's condition has reached maximum medical improvement under 28-29-2(3)(ii) and benefits are subject to adjustment pursuant to subsection (b) of this section.

(d) In the event partial compensation is paid, in no case shall the period covered by the compensation be greater than three hundred and twelve (312) weeks. In the event that compensation for partial disability is paid under this section for a period of three hundred and twelve (312) weeks, the employee's right to continuing weekly compensation benefits shall be determined pursuant to the terms of 28-33-18.3. At least twenty-six (26) weeks prior to the expiration of the period, the employer or insurer shall notify the employee and the director of its intention to terminate benefits at the expiration of three hundred and twelve (312) weeks and advise the employee of the right to apply for a continuation of benefits under the terms of 28-33-18.3. In the event that the employer or insurer fails to notify the employee and the director as prescribed, the employer or insurer shall continue to pay benefits to the employee for a period equal to twenty-six (26) weeks after the date the notice is served on the employee and the director.

28-33-18.3. Continuation of benefits - Partial incapacity. -- (a) For all injuries occurring on or after September 1, 1990, in those cases where the employee has received a notice of intention to terminate partial incapacity benefits pursuant to 28-33-18, the employee or his or her duly authorized representative may file with the workers' compensation court a petition for continuation of benefits on forms prescribed by the workers' compensation court. In any proceeding before the workers' compensation court on a petition for continuation of partial incapacity benefits, where the employee demonstrates by a fair preponderance of the evidence that his or her partial incapacity poses a material hinderance to obtaining employment suitable to his or her limitation, partial incapacity benefits shall continue. For injuries on and after July 1, 1994, the term "Material hinderance" is hereby defined to include only compensable injuries causing a greater than sixty-five percent (65%) degree of functional impairment and/or disability. Any period of time for which the employee has received benefits for total incapacity shall not be included in the calculation of the three hundred and twelve (312) week period.

The provisions of this subsection shall apply to all injuries from Sept. 1, 1990 to July 1, 1994.

(b) (1) Where any employee's incapacity is partial and has extended for more than three hundred and twelve (312) weeks and the employee has proved an entitlement to continued benefits under subsection (a), payments made to all such incapacitated employees shall be increased as of May 10, 1991, and annually on the tenth (10th) day of May thereafter so long as the employee remains incapacitated. The increase shall be by an amount equal to the total percentage increase in the annual consumer price index, United States city average for urban wage earners and clerical workers, as formulated and computed by the bureau of labor statistics of the United States department of labor for the period of March 1 to February 28 each year.

(2) The word "Index" as used in this section refers to the consumer price index, United States city average for urban wage earners and clerical workers, as that index was formulated and computed by the bureau of labor statistics of the United States department of labor.

(3) The annual increase shall be based upon the percentage increase, if any, in the consumer price index for the month of a given year, over the index for February, the previous year. Thereafter, increases shall be made on May 10 annually, based upon the percentage increase, if any, in the consumer price index for the period of March 1 to February 28.

(4) The above computations shall be made by the director of labor and training and promulgated to insurers and employers making payments required by this section. Increases shall be paid by insurers and employers without further order of the court. If payment payable under this section is not mailed within fourteen (14) days after the employer or insurer has been notified by publication in a newspaper of general circulation in the state it becomes due, there shall be added to the unpaid payment an amount equal to twenty percent (20%) thereof, which shall be paid at the same time as but in addition to the payment.

(5) This section shall apply only to payment of weekly indemnity benefits to employees as described in subsection (b)(1), and shall not apply to specific compensation payments for loss of use or disfigurement or payment of dependency benefits or any other benefits payable under the Workers' Compensation Act.

(c) No petitions for commutation shall be allowed or entertained in those cases where an employee is receiving benefits pursuant to this section.

28-33-20.1. Computation of earnings for recurrence - Burden of employee to establish recurrence. -- (a) In the event a person collecting benefits under this chapter, regardless of the date of injury, has returned to employment for a period of twenty-six (26) weeks or more and suffers a recurrence of the injury which precipitated the person collecting benefits under this chapter, the average weekly wage shall be ascertained by dividing the gross wages earned by the injured worker in employment by the employer in whose service he or she is injured during the thirteen (13) calendar weeks immediately preceding the week in which he or she suffered the recurrence, by the number of calendar weeks during which, or any portion of which, the worker was actually employed by that employer; but in making this computation, absence for seven (7) consecutive calendar days, although not in the same calendar week, shall be considered as absence for a calendar week.

(b) For all petitions filed as of September 1, 1990, to prove recurrence of incapacity to work, regardless of the date of injury, the employee must document that the incapacity has increased or returned without the need for the employee to document a comparative change of condition.

28-33-44. Continuation of health insurance benefits. -- (a) No employer shall cancel but shall be obligated to continue to provide any employee's health insurance benefits for a period of two (2) years from the date of the employee's receiving weekly compensation benefits pursuant to a preliminary determination or a decision of the workers' compensation court, or the filing at the department of a memorandum of agreement or notice of direct payment for injuries occurring on or before February 28, 1986. The provisions of this section shall not apply if:

(1) The employee is no longer receiving compensation pursuant to a preliminary determination or a decision of the workers' compensation court;

(2) Has accepted suitable alternative employment;

(3) Fails to pay any contribution toward the health care benefits that he or she was required to pay prior to the injury;

(4) A petition for a commutation or a structured settlement, as defined in 28-33-25, is granted;

(5) The employee is a beneficiary of an equivalent health insurance policy of his or her spouse; or

(6) The employee is employed in the construction industry and is a participant in a multiemployer welfare plan as defined in the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, 29 U.S.C. 1002 et seq., and which the Internal Revenue Service has determined under the Internal Revenue Code, 26 U.S.C. 101 et seq., is tax exempt as to contributions received and as to benefits received by its participants.

(b) In the event any employer fails to comply with the provisions of this section, then the employer shall be liable for hospital and medical costs that would have been paid by the hospital or medical insurance plan afforded the employee had he or she been covered by the plan.

(c) The provisions of this section shall only apply to claims for injuries sustained on or after July 1, 1984.

28-33-46. Anniversary review. -- Any employee receiving weekly benefits fifty-two (52) weeks after a compensable injury shall undergo an anniversary review by the court at which, unless waived by the employer, the court shall make findings as to whether maximum medical improvement has been reached, as to the degree of functional impairment and/or disability of the employee, and as to whether the employee should be classified as partially disabled or totally disabled. Temporary total disability shall not last beyond the anniversary review. Unless waived by the employer, an anniversary review shall be conducted annually thereafter. The court shall perform this anniversary review of cases where injury occurs after May 18, 1992.

SECTION 35. Section 28-37-1 of the General Laws in Chapter 28-37 entitled "Workers' Compensation Administrative Fund" is hereby amended to read as follows:

28-37-1. Establishment - Sources - Administration. -- (a) There is hereby established in the department of labor and training a special account to be known as the workers' compensation administrative account, an account within the general fund. This account, hereinafter referred to as the "workers' compensation administrative account", shall consist of payments made to it as hereinafter provided, or penalties paid pursuant to this chapter, and of all other moneys paid into and received by the fund, of property and securities acquired by and through the use of moneys belonging to the fund, and of interest earned upon the moneys belonging to the fund. All moneys in the fund shall be mingled and undivided. The fund shall be administered by the director of labor and training or his or her designee.

(b) The purposes for which this fund shall be used are as follows:

(1) To provide funds to the Dr. John E. Donley rehabilitation center for suitable structures, personnel, and equipment necessary for the rendering of rehabilitative services, including, but not limited to, physical therapy, psychotherapy, and occupational therapy to injured workers coming within the purview of chapters 29 - 38 of this title;

(2) To provide funds for all expenditures of the education unit created pursuant to 42-16-4 and all expenditures of the workers' compensation fraud prevention unit created pursuant to 42-16.1-12;

(3) To provide funds for all expenditures of the workers' compensation court after July 1, 1989. The administrator of the fund shall on July 1st of each fiscal year transfer such funds as are reasonable and necessary to fund all expenditures of the workers' compensation court for the fiscal year from the administrative account, to a restricted receipt account to be established in the judicial department. The administrator of the workers' compensation court is hereby authorized to draw funds from the restricted receipt account for all court expenditures;

(4) To provide funds to the department of labor and training for all expenditures incurred in administering its responsibilities under chapters 29 - 38 of this title;

(5) To provide funds to the department of labor and training for all expenditures incurred in investigating and processing or otherwise administering its responsibilities regarding claims for benefits or payments under 28-35-20, 28-37-4, and 28-37-8;

(6) To provide funds to the department of labor and training for the maintenance and operation of a system of data collection as provided for in 28-37-31. The director shall be authorized to purchase and/or lease equipment necessary to effectuate the purposes of 28-37-31;

(7) To provide funds for loans to the state compensation insurance fund as provided in 27-7.2-19 and 27-7.2-20.1; and

(8) To provide funds for the payment or reimbursement of actual incremental costs of COLA increases mandated by 28-33-17 respecting injuries occurring prior to September 1, 1990, in such amounts as the director, in his or her sole discretion, deems appropriate. These amounts may be paid out of the fund by order of the director and shall be made by order drawn on the general treasury to be charged against the fund.

(9) To provide funds to the workers' compensation advisory council created pursuant to the provisions of 28-29-30 for expenditures to carry out its responsibilities.

(10) To provide funds to the department of business regulation relating to the evaluation of rate filings, reviews, and pricing procedures pursuant to the provisions of 27-9-52.

SECTION 36. Sections 28-38-23 and 28-38-24 of the General Laws in Chapter 28-38 entitled "Dr. John E. Donley Rehabilitation Center" are hereby amended to read as follows:

28-38-23. Name change. -- On and after July 1, 1961, tThe name of the curative centre in the department shall be the Dr. John E. Donley rehabilitation center.

28-38-24. Reference to curative centre. -- Wherever in any existing law reference is made to the curative centre, and wherever in an existing law the term "state curative centre" or "curative centre" or "the centre," as variously used, refers to the curative centre in the department, that reference and that term shall be deemed, on and after July 1, 1961, to have reference to the Dr. John E. Donley rehabilitation center.

SECTION 37. Section 28-40-1 of the General Laws in Chapter 28-40 entitled "Temporary Disability Insurance - Contributions" is hereby amended to read as follows:

28-40-1. Amount of employee contributions - Wages on which based. -- (a) The taxable wage base under this chapter for the calendar year beginning January 1, 1995 and all calendar years thereafter shall be equal to the greater of thirty-eight thousand dollars ($38,000) or the annual earnings needed by an individual to qualify for the maximum weekly benefit amount and the maximum duration under chapters 39 - 41 of this title. That taxable wage base shall be computed as follows:

On September 30, 1994 and eEvery September 30 thereafter, the maximum weekly benefit amount in effect as of that date shall be multiplied by thirty (30) and the resultant product shall be divided by thirty-six hundredths (.36). If the result thus obtained is not an even multiple of one hundred dollars ($100), it shall be rounded upward to the next higher even multiple of one hundred dollars ($100). That taxable wage base shall be effective for the calendar year beginning on the next January 1.

(b) Beginning January 1, 1992, each employee shall contribute with respect to employment after the date upon which the employer becomes subject to chapters 39 - 41 of this title, an amount equal to one and three tenths percent (1.3%) of the wages paid by the employer up to a taxable wage base of $38,000.

(c) Beginning January 1, 1995 and all calendar years thereafter, e Each employee shall contribute with respect to employment after the date upon which the employer becomes subject to chapters 39 - 41 of this title, an amount equal to the fund cost rate times the wages paid by the employer to the employee up to the taxable wage base as defined and computed in subsection (a). The employee contribution rate for the following calendar year shall be determined by computing the fund cost rate on or before November 15 of each year as follows:

The total amount of disbursements made from the fund for the twelve-month period ending on the immediately preceding September 30 shall be divided by the total taxable wages paid by employers during the twelve-month period ending on the immediately preceding June 30. The ratio thus obtained shall be multiplied by one hundred (100) and the resultant product if not an exact multiple of one-tenth of one percent (0.1%) shall be rounded down to the next lowest multiple of one-tenth of one percent (0.1%); provided, however, that if the fund balance as of the preceding September 30 is less than the total disbursements from the fund for the six-month period ending on that September 30, that difference shall be added to the total disbursements for the twelve-month period ending September 30 for the purpose of computing the fund cost rate, and if the resulting fund cost rate is not an exact multiple of one-tenth of one percent (0.1%) it shall be rounded to the nearest multiple of one-tenth of one percent (0.1%).

SECTION 38. Sections 28-41-5. 28-41-6, 28-41-7, 28-41-8 and 28-41-12 of the General Laws in Chapter 28-41 entitled "Temporary Disability Insurance Benefits" are hereby amended to read as follows:

28-41-5. Weekly benefit rate - Dependents' allowances. -- (a) (1) Benefit rate. The benefit rate payable under this chapter to any eligible individual with respect to any week of his or her unemployment due to sickness, when that week occurs within a benefit year, shall be, for benefit years beginning on or after October 7, 1990, four and sixty-two hundredths percent (4.62%) of the wages paid to the individual in that calendar quarter of the base period in which the individual's wages were highest; provided, however, that the benefit rate shall not exceed seventy percent (70%), and effective July 1, 1990 seventy-five percent (75%), and effective July 1, 1991 eighty percent (80%), and effective July 1, 1992 eighty-five percent (85%) of the average weekly wage paid to individuals covered by chapters 42 - 44 of this title for the preceding calendar year ending December 31. If the maximum weekly benefit rate is not an exact multiple of one dollar ($1.00) then the rate shall be raised to the next higher multiple of one dollar ($1.00). Those weekly benefit rates shall be effective throughout the benefit years beginning on or after July 1 of the year prior to July of the succeeding calendar year.

(2) The benefit rate of any individual, if not an exact multiple of one dollar ($1.00), shall be raised to the next higher multiple of one dollar ($1.00).

(b) Dependents' allowances. An individual to whom benefits for unemployment due to sickness are payable under this chapter with respect to any week, shall, in addition to those benefits, be paid with respect to each week a dependent's allowance of ten dollars ($10.00) or five percent (5%), and effective July 1, 1990 six percent (6%), and effective July 1, 1991 seven percent (7%), of the individual's benefit rate, payable under subsection (a), whichever is greater for each of that individual's children, including adopted and stepchildren or that individual's court appointed wards who, at the beginning of the individual's benefit year, is under eighteen (18) years of age and who is at that time in fact dependent on that individual. A dependent's allowance shall also be paid to that individual for any child, including an adopted child or a stepchild or that individual's court appointed ward, eighteen (18) years of age or over, incapable of earning any wages because of mental or physical incapacity, and who is dependent on that individual in fact at the beginning of the individual's benefit year, including individuals who have been appointed the legal guardian of such child by the appropriate court. However, in no instance shall the number of dependents for which an individual may receive dependents' allowances exceed five (5) in total. The weekly total of dependents' allowances payable to any individual, if not an exact multiple of one dollar ($1.00), shall be rounded to the next lower multiple of one dollar ($1.00). The number of an individual's dependents, and the fact of their dependency, shall be determined as of the beginning of that individual's benefit year; provided, however, that only one individual shall be entitled to a dependent's allowance for the same dependent with respect to any week. Each individual who claims a dependent's allowance shall establish his or her claim thereto to the satisfaction of the director under procedures established by the director. This provision shall be effective for all benefit years beginning on or after July 1, 1988.

(c) Any individual's benefit rate and/or dependents' allowance in effect for a benefit year shall continue in effect until the end of that benefit year.

28-41-6. Effect on waiting period credit and benefits of receipt of workers' compensation payments. -- (a) No individual shall be entitled to receive waiting period credit benefits or dependents' allowances for any week beginning on or after September 7, 1969, with respect to which benefits are paid or payable to that individual under any workers' compensation law of this state, any other state, or the federal government, on account of any disability caused by accident or illness. In the event that workers' compensation benefits are subsequently awarded to an individual, whether on a weekly basis or as a lump sum, for a week or weeks with respect to which that individual has received waiting period credit, benefits, or dependents' allowances, under chapters 39 - 41 of this title, the director, for the temporary disability insurance fund, shall be subrogated to that individual's rights in that award to the extent of the amount of benefits and/or dependents' allowances paid to him or her under those chapters.

(b) (1) Whenever an employer or his or her insurance carrier has been notified that an individual has filed a claim for unemployment due to sickness for any week or weeks under chapters 39-41 of this title for which week or weeks that individual is or may be eligible for benefits under chapters 29-38 of this title, that notice shall constitute a lien upon any pending award, order, or settlement to that individual under chapters 29-38 of this title.

(2) The employer or his insurance carrier shall be required to reimburse the director, for the temporary disability insurance fund, the amount of benefits and/or dependents' allowances received by the individual under chapters 39 - 41 of this title, for any week or weeks for which that award, order, or settlement is made.

(c) Whenever an individual becomes entitled to or is awarded workmen's compensation benefits for the same week or weeks with respect to which he has received benefits and/or dependents' allowances under chapters 39 - 41 of this title, and notice of that receipt has been given to the division of workers' compensation of the department of labor and training and/or the workers' compensation court, the division or court is hereby required to and shall incorporate in the award, order, or approval of settlement, an order requiring the employer or his or her insurance carrier to reimburse the director, for the temporary disability insurance fund, the amount of any disability benefits and/or dependents' allowances which may have been paid to the employee for unemployment due to sickness for those weeks under chapters 39 - 41 of this title.

(d) In the event that, through inadvertence, error, or mistake, an individual shall have received benefit payments and/or dependents' allowances for any week or weeks under chapters 39-41 of this title, and has also received payments for the same week or weeks under any workers' compensation law of this state, any other state, or of the federal government, he or she shall, in the discretion of the director of the department of labor and training, be liable to have that sum deducted from any benefits payable to him or her under chapters 39 - 41 of this title, or shall be liable to repay to the director, for the temporary disability insurance fund, a sum equal to the amount so received, and that sum shall be collectible in the manner provided in 28-40-12 for the collection of past due contributions.

(e) Notwithstanding any other provision of this section, no individual who, prior to September 1, 1969, has sustained an injury by reason of which he or she may be eligible for benefits under chapters 29-38 of this title shall be deprived of any rights which he or she may have under chapters 39 - 41 of this title.

28-41-7. Total amount of benefits. -- (a) The maximum total amount of benefits payable during a benefit year to any eligible individual whose benefit year begins on or after July 1, 1985 and prior to October 7, 1990 shall be determined in the following manner:

(1) The total number of weeks of employment in his or her base period shall be multiplied by three-fifths (3/5), and the result thereof, if not a whole number of weeks, shall be adjusted to the next higher whole number of weeks;

(2) The number of weeks so obtained shall be multiplied by the individual's weekly benefit rate for unemployment due to sickness; and the result thereof shall be the total amount of benefit credits to which that individual shall be entitled during his or her benefit year; provided, however, that no individual shall be paid total benefits in any benefit year which exceed thirty (30) times his or her weekly benefit rate; provided, further, however, that the dependents' allowances to which he or she might be entitled under 28-41-5 shall be in addition to those total benefits; and

(3) Each week of employment within an individual's base period shall be counted as one week for the purpose of this section, regardless of the number of employers for whom an individual performed services in employment during that week. For the purpose of this section, a week of employment shall be any calendar week within which an individual has performed services in employment for one or more employers subject to chapters 39 - 41 of this title.

(b) The total amount of benefits payable during a benefit year to any eligible individual whose benefit year begins on or after October 7, 1990, shall be an amount equal to thirty-six percent (36%) of the individual's total wages for employment by employers subject to chapters 39 - 41 of this title during his or her base period; provided, however, that no individual shall be paid total benefits in any benefit year which exceed thirty (30) times his or her weekly benefit rate; provided further, however, that dependents' allowances to which he or she might be entitled under 28-41-5 shall be in addition to these total benefits. If the total amount of benefits is not an exact multiple of one dollar ($1.00), then it shall be raised to the next higher multiple of one dollar ($1.00).

28-41-8. Pregnancy benefits. -- (a) For weeks beginning on or after July 5, 1981, a An otherwise eligible individual who is unemployed due to sickness resulting from pregnancy, childbirth, miscarriage, or abortion shall be entitled to receive those benefits which are regularly provided for unemployment due to sickness in chapters 39 - 41 of this title, except as provided in subsection (b).

(b) An otherwise eligible individual, upon giving birth to a child during the period July 5, 1981 through July 31, 1981, may elect to receive in lieu of any and all benefits provided in subsection (a), a lump sum maternity benefit under the following terms and conditions:

(1) If, under chapters 39 - 41 of this title, the total amount of benefits to which an individual is entitled for unemployment due to sickness is five hundred dollars ($500) or more at the time the child is born, then the amount of the lump sum maternity benefit to be paid to that individual shall be five hundred dollars ($500);

(2) If, under those chapters, the total amount of benefits to which an individual is entitled is less than five hundred dollars ($500) at the time the child is born, then that lesser sum only shall be paid to the individual as the lump sum maternity benefit to which she is entitled; and

(3) The receipt of a maternity benefit shall not be deemed to have satisfied the requirement of a waiting period as specified in 28-41-12 for any subsequent period of unemployment due to sickness, if no waiting period has been previously established.

28-41-12. Waiting period. -- (a) The waiting period of any individual shall be seven (7) consecutive days during which that individual is unemployed due to sickness.

(b) No waiting period shall be credited to any individual unless he or she has filed a valid claim in accordance with regulations adopted as hereinbefore prescribed.

(c) Benefits shall be payable to an eligible individual only for those weeks of his or her unemployment due to sickness within a benefit year which occur subsequent to one waiting period, which shall be served at any time during the benefit year. However, if a new benefit year immediately succeeds his or her previous benefit year, the waiting period for that new benefit year may begin on any day within the seven-day period immediately preceding the first day of his or her new benefit year. If the first week of an individual's unemployment due to sickness which occurs within his or her new benefit year is immediately preceded by a week for which he or she is in receipt of benefits (including lag day payments as provided in 28-41-9) for total or partial unemployment due to sickness under chapters 39-41 of this title, or under similar federal provisions, he or she shall not be required to serve a waiting period for that new benefit year.

(d) Except as provided in subsection (c), no period of unemployment due to sickness shall be counted towards an individual's required waiting period if with respect to any portion of that period of unemployment due to sickness, benefits have been paid under the employment security or temporary disability insurance acts of any other state or of any similar acts of the United States or of any foreign government.

(e) An individual who has a benefit year in effect prior to and on November 16, 1958, may begin to serve a waiting period for his or her new benefit year on any day of the week within which that previous benefit year ends. If an individual is unemployed due to sickness for the seven (7) consecutive days, as provided for in subsection (a), and his or her sickness continues for at least an additional twenty-one (21) consecutive days, he or she shall be eligible to receive benefits for the waiting period of seven (7) consecutive days. This provision shall be effective for all benefit years beginning on or after July 1, 1985.

SECTION 39. Sections 28-42-2, 28-42-3, 28-42-29, 28-42-30, 28-42-75, 28-42-78, 28-42-79 and 28-42-84 of the General Laws in Chapter 28-42 entitled "Employment Security - General Provisions" are hereby amended to read as follows:

28-42-2. Declaration of policy. -- Economic insecurity, due to unemployment, being a serious menace to the health, morale, and general welfare of the people of this state, is, therefore, a subject of interest and concern to the community as a whole, warranting appropriate action by the general assembly to prevent its spread and to lighten the burden which now falls on the unemployed worker and his or her family. According to the report of the joint special commission appointed pursuant to the joint resolutions, adopted respectively on February 5, 1935, March 4, 1935, and April 4, 1935, the evidence seems conclusive that in the face of recurring periods of business depression, which industry and commerce appear powerless to prevent, the industrial worker's position is extremely insecure. The individual is as incapable of protecting himself or herself against unemployment, as industry is of preventing it. Experience has further shown that if the state delays action until unemployment becomes excessive, it can neither create promptly the organizations necessary to orderly, economical, and effective relief, nor bear the financial burden of relief without disrupting its whole system of ordinary revenues and jeopardizing its credit. Chapters 42 - 44 of this title are designed to meet in some measure this situation by providing for the accumulation of a fund to assist in protecting the public against the ill effects of unemployment which may arise in future years.

28-42-3. Definitions. -- The following words and phrases, as used in chapters 42 - 44 of this title, shall have the following meanings unless the context clearly requires otherwise:

(1) "Administration account" means the employment security administration account established by this chapter;

(2) "Average weekly wage" means the amount determined by dividing the individual's total wages earned for service performed in employment within his or her base period by the number of that individual's credit weeks within his or her base period;

(3) "Base period", with respect to an individual's benefit year when the benefit year begins on or after October 1, 1989, means the first four (4) of the most recently completed five (5) calendar quarters immediately preceding the first day of an individual's benefit year. For any individual's benefit year when the benefit year begins on or after October 4, 1992, and for any individual deemed monetarily ineligible for benefits for the "base period" as defined in this subdivision, the department shall make a redetermination of entitlement based upon the alternate base period which consists of the last four (4) completed calendar quarters immediately preceding the first day of the claimant's benefit year. Notwithstanding anything contained to the contrary in this subdivision, the base period shall not include any calendar quarter previously used to establish a valid claim for benefits; provided, however, that notwithstanding any provision of chapters 42 - 44 of this title to the contrary, for benefit years beginning on or after October 4, 1992, whenever an individual who has received workers' compensation benefits is entitled to reinstatement under 28-33-47, but the position to which reinstatement is sought does not exist or is not available, the individual's base period shall be determined as if the individual filed for benefits on the date of the injury;

(4) "Benefit" means the money payable to an individual as compensation for his or her wage losses due to unemployment as provided in these chapters;

(5) "Benefit credits" means the total amount of money payable to an individual as benefits, as determined by 28-44-5;

(6) "Benefit rate" means the money payable to an individual as compensation, as provided in chapters 42 - 44 of this title, for his or her wage losses with respect to any week of total unemployment;

(7) "Benefit year", with respect to any individual who does not already have a benefit year in effect, and who files a valid claim for benefits as of November 16, 1958, or any later date, shall mean fifty-two (52) consecutive calendar weeks, the first of which shall be the week containing the day as of which he or she first files a valid claim in accordance with regulations adopted as hereinafter prescribed; provided, however, that for any benefit year beginning on or after October 1, 1989, the benefit year shall be fifty-three (53) weeks if the filing of a new valid claim would result in overlapping any quarter of the base period of a prior new claim previously filed by the individual on or after October 1, 1989; provided, further, however, that in no event shall a new benefit year begin prior to the Sunday next following the end of the old benefit year;

(8) "Calendar quarter" means the period of three (3) consecutive calendar months ending March 31, June 30, September 30, and December 31; or the equivalent thereof in accordance with regulations as hereinafter prescribed;

(9) "Contributions" means the money payments to the state employment security fund required by those chapters;

(10) "Credit week" means any week within an individual's base period in which that individual earned wages amounting to at least twenty (20) times the minimum hourly wage as defined in chapter 12 of this title for performing services in employment for one or more employers subject to chapters 42 - 44 of this title;

(11) "Crew leader", for the purpose of subdivision (18), means an individual who:

(i) Furnishes individuals to perform service in agricultural labor for any other person;

(ii) Pays (either on his or her own behalf or on behalf of that other person) the individuals so furnished by him or her for the service in agricultural labor performed by them; and

(iii) Has not entered into a written agreement with that other person (farm operator) under which that individual (crew leader) is designated as an employee of that other person (farm operator).

(12) "Director" means the head of the department of employment and training or his or her authorized representative;

(13) "Domestic service employment". The term "Employment" shall include domestic service after December 31, 1977, in a private home performed for a person who paid cash remuneration of one thousand dollars ($1,000) or more in any calendar quarter after December 31, 1977, in the current calendar year or the preceding calendar year to individuals employed in that domestic service;

(14) "Employee" means any person who is or has been employed by an employer subject to those chapters and in employment subject to those chapters;

(15) "Employer" means:

(i) Any employing unit which was an employer as of December 31, 1955;

(ii) Any employing unit which for some portion of a day on and after January 1, 1956, has or had in employment within any calendar year one or more individuals; except, however, for "domestic service employment", as defined in subdivision (13);

(iii) For the effective period of its election pursuant to 28-42-12, any other employing unit which has elected to become subject to chapters 42 - 44 of this title;

(iv) Any employing unit not an employer by reason of any other paragraph of this subdivision for which, within either the current or preceding calendar year, service is or was performed with respect to which that employing unit is liable for any federal tax against which credit may be taken for contributions required to be paid into this state's employment security fund; or which, as a condition for approval of chapters 42 - 44 of this title for full tax credit against the tax imposed by the Federal Unemployment Tax Act, 26 U.S.C. 3301 et seq., is required, pursuant to that act, to be an "employer" under chapters 42 - 44 of this title;

(16) "Employing unit" means any person, partnership, association, trust, estate, or corporation whether domestic or foreign, or the legal representative, trustee in bankruptcy, receiver, or trustee thereof, or the legal representative of a deceased person, which has, or after January 1, 1935, had in his or her employ one or more individuals; provided, however, that for the purposes of subdivision (13) a private home shall be considered an employing unit only if the person for whom the domestic service was performed paid cash remuneration of one thousand dollars ($1,000) or more in any calendar quarter after December 31, 1977, in the current calendar year or the preceding calendar year to individuals employed in that domestic service in that private home;

(17) (i) "Employment", subject to 28-42-4 - 28-42-10, means service, including service in interstate commerce, performed for wages or under any contract of hire, written or oral, express or implied; provided, however, that service performed on or after January 1, 1972, shall also be deemed to constitute employment for all the purposes of chapters 42 - 44 of this title, if performed by an individual in the employ of a nonprofit organization as described in subdivision (24) except as provided in 28-42-8(7).

(ii) Notwithstanding any other provisions of this section, "Employment" shall also mean service with respect to which a tax is required to be paid under any federal law imposing a tax against which credit may be taken for contributions required to be paid into this state's employment security fund or which as a condition for full tax credit against the tax imposed by the Federal Unemployment Tax Act is required to be covered under chapters 42 - 44 of this title;

(18) "Employment - Crew leader". For the purposes of subdivision (14):

(i) Any individual who is a member of a crew furnished by a crew leader to perform service in agricultural labor for any other person shall be treated as an employee of that crew leader if:

(A) That crew leader holds a valid certificate of registration under the Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act, 29 U.S.C. 1801 et seq., or substantially all members of that crew operate or maintain tractors, mechanized harvesting, or crop-dusting equipment, or any other mechanized equipment, which is provided by that crew leader; and

(ii) That individual is not an employee of that other person within the meaning of subdivision (14); and

(iii) In the case of any individual who is furnished by a crew leader to perform service in agricultural labor for any other person and who is not treated as an employee of that crew leader:

(A) That other person and not the crew leader shall be treated as the employer of that individual; and

(B) That other person shall be treated as having paid cash remuneration to that individual in an amount equal to the amount of cash remuneration paid to that individual by the crew leader (either on his or her own behalf or on behalf of that other person) for the service in agricultural labor performed for that other person;

(19) "Employment office" means a free public employment office, or branch thereof, operated by the director or by this state as part of a system of free public employment offices, or such other agency as the director may designate with the approval of the social security administration;

(20) "Fund" means the employment security fund established by this chapter;

(21) "Governmental entity" means state and local governments in this state and shall include the following:

(i) The state of Rhode Island or any of its instrumentalities, or any political subdivision thereof or any of its instrumentalities;

(ii) Any instrumentality of more than one of the foregoing; or

(iii) Any instrumentality of any of the foregoing and one or more other states or political subdivisions;

(22) "Hospital" means an institution which has been licensed, certified, or approved by the department of health as a hospital;

(23) (i) "Institution of higher education" means an educational institution in this state which:

(A) Admits as regular students only individuals having a certificate of graduation from a high school, or the recognized equivalent of such certificate;

(B) Is legally authorized within this state to provide a program of education beyond high school;

(C) Provides:

(I) An educational program for which it awards a bachelor's or higher degree, or a program which is acceptable for full credit toward such a degree;

(II) A program of post-graduate or post-doctoral studies; or

(III) A program of training to prepare students for gainful employment in a recognized occupation; and

(D) Is a public or other non-profit institution.

(ii) Notwithstanding any of the foregoing provisions of this subdivision, all colleges and universities in this state are institutions of higher education for purposes of this section;

(24) "Nonprofit organization" means an organization or group of organizations as defined in 26 U.S.C. 501(c)(3) which is exempt from income tax under 26 U.S.C. 501(a);

(25) (i) "Partial unemployment". An employee shall be deemed partially unemployed in any week of less than full-time work if he or she fails to earn in wages for that week an amount equal to the weekly benefit rate for total unemployment to which he or she would be entitled if totally unemployed and eligible.

(ii) For the purposes of this subdivision and subdivision (27), the term "Wages" shall include only that part of remuneration for any work, which is in excess of one-fifth (1/5) of the weekly benefit rate for total unemployment, rounded to the next lower multiple of one dollar ($1.00), to which the individual would be entitled if totally unemployed and eligible in any one week, and the term "services" shall include only that part of any work for which remuneration in excess of one-fifth (1/5) of the weekly benefit rate for total unemployment, rounded to the next lower multiple of one dollar ($1.00), to which the individual would be entitled if totally unemployed and eligible in any one week is payable; provided, however, that nothing contained herein shall permit any individual to whom remuneration is payable for any work performed in any week in an amount equal to or greater than his or her weekly benefit rate to receive benefits under this subdivision for that week.

(iii) Notwithstanding anything contained to the contrary in this subdivision, the term "Services", as used in this subdivision and in subdivision (27), shall not include services rendered by an individual under the exclusive supervision of any agency of this state, or any political subdivision thereof, whereby the services are required solely for the purpose of affording relief, support, or assistance to needy individuals performing those services, or services performed by members of the national guard and organized reserves in carrying out their duties in weekly drills as members of those organizations, and the term "Wages", as used in this subdivision and in subdivision (27), shall not include either remuneration received by needy individuals for rendering the aforementioned services when that remuneration is paid exclusively from funds made available for that purpose out of taxes collected by this state or any political subdivision thereof, or remuneration received from the federal government by members of the national guard and organized reserves, as drill pay, including longevity pay and allowances;

(26) "Payroll" means the total amount of all wages paid by the employer to his or her employees for employment;

(27) "Total unemployment." An individual shall be deemed totally unemployed in any week in which he or she performs no services (as used in subdivision (25)) and for which he or she earns no wages (as used in subdivision (25)), and in which he or she cannot reasonably return to any self-employment in which he or she has customarily been engaged;

(28) "Wages" means all remuneration paid for personal services on or after January 1, 1940, including commissions and bonuses and the cash value of all remuneration paid in any medium other than cash, and all other remuneration which is subject to a tax under a federal law imposing a tax against which credit may be taken for contributions required to be paid into a state unemployment fund. Gratuities customarily received by an individual in the course of his or her employment from persons other than his or her employing unit shall be treated as wages paid by his or her employing unit. The reasonable cash value of remuneration paid in any medium other than cash, and the reasonable amount of gratuities, shall be estimated and determined in accordance with rules prescribed by the director; except that for the purpose of this subdivision and of 28-43-1 - 28-43-14, this term shall not include:

(i) On and after January 1, 1980, t That part of remuneration which is paid by an employer to an individual with respect to employment during any calendar year, after remuneration equal to the amount of the taxable wage base as determined in accordance with 28-43-7 has been paid during that calendar year by the employer or his or her predecessor to that individual; provided, however, that if the definition of the term "Wages" as contained in the Federal Unemployment Tax Act is amended to include remuneration in excess of the taxable wage base for that employment, then, for the purposes of 28-43-1 - 28-43-14, "Wages" shall include the remuneration as hereinbefore set forth up to an amount equal to the dollar limitation specified in the federal act. For the purposes of this subdivision, the term "Employment" shall include services constituting employment under any employment security law of another state or of the federal government;

(ii) The amount of any payment made to, or on behalf of, an employee under a plan or system established by an employer which makes provision for his or her employees generally or for a class or classes of his or her employees (including any amount paid by an employer or an employee for insurance or annuities, or into a fund, to provide for any such payment), on account of:

(A) Retirement;

(B) Sickness or accident disability;

(C) Medical and hospitalization expenses in connection with sickness or accident disability; or

(D) Death; provided, that the employee has not the

(I) Option to receive, instead of provision for that death benefit, any part of that payment or, if that death benefit is insured, any part of the premiums (or contributions to premiums) paid by his or her employer; and

(II) Right, under the provisions of the plan or system or policy of insurance providing for that death benefit, to assign that benefit, or to receive a cash consideration in lieu of that benefit either upon his or her withdrawal from the plan or system providing for that benefit or upon termination of the plan or system or policy of insurance, or of his or her employment with that employer; or

(III) Any amount paid by an employee or an amount paid by an employer under a benefit plan organized under section 125 of the Internal Revenue Code.

(E) The payment by an employer (without deduction from the remuneration of the employee) of

(I) The tax imposed upon an employee under 26 U.S.C. 3101; or

(II) Any payment required from an employee under chapters 42 - 44 of this title.

(29) "Week" means the seven (7) day calendar week beginning on Sunday at 12:01 A.M. and ending on Saturday at 12:00 A.M. midnight.

28-42-29. Expenditure of administrative funds authorized by secretary of labor. -- All moneys received by the director on and after June 30, 1941, from the secretary of labor of the United States under Title III of the Social Security Act, 42 U.S.C. 501 et seq., or any unencumbered balance of the employment security administration account except money received for the payment of expenses incurred pursuant to an appropriation duly made by the legislature in accordance with the provisions of 42 U.S.C. 1103, shall be expended by the director solely for the purposes and in the amounts found by the secretary of labor to be necessary for the proper and efficient administration of chapters 42 - 44 of this title.

28-42-30. Replacement of unauthorized expenditures from administration account. -- If any money received after June 30, 1941, from the secretary of labor under Title III of the Social Security Act, 42 U.S.C. 501 - 504, or any unencumbered balances in the employment security administration account as of that date, any moneys granted after that date to this state pursuant to the provisions of the Wagner-Peyser Act, 29 U.S.C. 49 et seq., or any moneys made available by this state or its political subdivisions and matched by the moneys granted to this state pursuant to 29 U.S.C. 49 et seq., are found by the secretary of labor, because of any action or contingency, to have been lost or been expended for purposes other than, or in amounts in excess of, those found necessary by the secretary of labor for the proper administration of chapters 42 - 44 of this title, it is the policy of this state that those moneys shall be replaced by moneys appropriated for those purposes from the general funds of this state to the employment security administration account for expenditures as provided in 28-42-29. Upon receipt of notice of this finding by the secretary of labor, the director shall promptly report the amount required for that replacement to the governor and the governor shall, at the earliest opportunity, submit to the legislature a request for the appropriation of that amount. This section shall not be construed to relieve this state of its obligations with respect to funds received prior to July 1, 1941, pursuant to 42 U.S.C. 501 et seq.

28-42-38.1. Quarterly wage reports. -- (a) (1) The department of labor and training is hereby designated and constituted the agency within this state charged with the responsibility of collecting quarterly wage information, as required by 42 U.S.C. 1302b-7. Each employer shall be required to submit a detailed wage report to the director, for all calendar quarters beginning on or after January 1, 1988 within thirty (30) days after the end of each quarter in a form and manner prescribed by the director, listing each employee's name, social security account number, the total amount of wages paid to each employee, and any other information that the director deems necessary. All reports shall be in addition to those now required by the department.

(2) The department will utilize the quarterly wage information that it collects from employers to establish an individual's eligibility for unemployment insurance benefits and to determine the amount and duration of benefits for all new claims filed on or after October 1, 1989.

(3) Notwithstanding any provisions of chapters 42-44 of this title to the contrary, the department may utilize employee quarterly wage information submitted by employers to measure the progress of the state in meeting the performance measures developed in response to United States Public Law 105-220, the Workforce Investment Act of 1998. The director shall also make the quarterly wage information available, upon request, to the agencies of other states in the performance of their public duties under the Workforce Investment Act of 1998 in that state. This information shall be made available only to the extent required by the secretary of labor and necessary for the valid administrative needs of the authorized agencies, and all agencies requesting this data shall protect it from unauthorized disclosure. The department shall be reimbursed by the agencies requesting the information for the costs incurred in providing the information.

(b) Notwithstanding any inconsistent provisions of chapters 42 - 44 of this title, an employer who fails to file a detailed wage report in such manner and at such times as required by subsection (a) for any calendar quarter beginning on or after July 1, 1988 shall pay a penalty of twenty-five dollars ($25.00) for each failure or refusal to file. An additional penalty of twenty-five dollars ($25.00) shall be assessed for each month the report is delinquent; provided, however, that the foregoing penalty shall not exceed one hundred and fifty dollars ($150) for any one report. This penalty shall be paid into the employment security tardy account fund and if any employer fails to pay the penalty, when assessed, it shall be collected by civil action as provided in 28-43-18.

28-42-75. Establishment of employment security interest fund - Sources. -- (a) (1) There is hereby created the employment security interest fund, to be administered by the director without liability on the part of the state beyond the amounts paid into and earned by the fund. This fund shall consist of:

(i) All interest received from employers subsequent to June 30, 1985 and paid pursuant to 28-43-15;

(ii) All other moneys paid into and received by the fund;

(iii) Property and securities acquired by and through the use of moneys belonging to the fund; and

(iv) Interest earned upon the moneys belonging to the fund.

(2) All moneys in the fund shall be mingled and undivided.

(b) All moneys received by the director for the employment security interest fund shall, upon receipt, be deposited by the director in a clearance account in a bank in this state.

28-42-78. Establishment of employment security tardy account fund - Sources. -- (a) (1) There is hereby created the employment security tardy account fund, to be administered by the director without liability on the part of the state beyond the amounts paid into and earned by the fund. This fund shall consist of:

(i) All penalties received from employers subsequent to December 31, 1985 and paid pursuant to 28-42-62 - 28-42-66;

(ii) All other moneys paid into and received by the fund;

(iii) Property and securities acquired by and through the use of moneys belonging to the fund; and

(iv) Interest earned upon the moneys belonging to the fund.

(2) All moneys in the fund shall be mingled and undivided.

(b) All moneys received by the director for account of the employment security tardy account fund shall, upon receipt, be deposited by the director in a clearance account in a bank in this state.

28-42-79. Disbursements - Balance. -- (a) The moneys in the tardy account fund shall be used solely for the following purposes:

(1) To make refunds of penalties erroneously collected and deposited in the fund; and

(2) To maintain essential employment security positions that would otherwise be diminished or eliminated by reductions in federal funding for these positions for any federal fiscal years commencing October 1, 1985 or thereafter.

(b) The general treasurer shall pay all vouchers duly drawn by the director upon the fund, in such amounts and in such manner as the director may prescribe. Vouchers so drawn upon the fund shall be referred to the controller within the department of administration. Upon receipt of these vouchers, the controller shall immediately record and sign them and shall promptly transfer the vouchers so signed to the general treasurer; provided, however, that these expenditures shall be used solely for the purposes herein specified and its balances shall not lapse at any time.

28-42-84. Job development fund - Disbursements - Unexpended balance. -- (a) The moneys in the job development fund shall be used for the following purposes:

(1) To reimburse the department of labor and training for the loss of any federal funds resulting from the collection and maintenance of the fund by the department;

(2) To make refunds of contributions erroneously collected and deposited in the fund;

(3) To pay any administrative expenses incurred by the department of labor and training associated with the collection of the contributions for employers paid pursuant to 28-43-8.5, and any other administrative expenses associated with the maintenance of the fund, including the payment of all premiums upon bonds required pursuant to 28-42-85;

(4) To provide for job training, counseling and assessment services, and other related activities and services. Services will include but are not limited to research, development, coordination, and training activities to promote workforce development and business development as established by the human resource investment council; and

(5) To support the state's job training for economic development.

(b) The general treasurer shall pay all vouchers duly drawn by the council upon the fund, in such amounts and in such manner as the council may prescribe. Vouchers so drawn upon the fund shall be referred to the controller within the department of administration. Upon receipt of those vouchers, the controller shall immediately record and sign them and shall promptly transfer those vouchers so signed to the general treasurer; provided, however, that those expenditures shall be used solely for the purposes herein specified and its balance shall not lapse at any time but shall remain continuously available for expenditures consistent herewith. Beginning July 1, 1989 and thereafter, t The general assembly shall annually appropriate the funds contained in the fund for the use of the human resource investment council.

SECTION 40. Section 31-27-2 of the General Law in Chapter 31-27 entitled "Motor Vehicle Offenses" is hereby amended to read as follows:

31-27-2. Driving under influence of liquor or drugs. -- (a) Whoever operates or otherwise drives any vehicle in the state while under the influence of any intoxicating liquor, drugs, toluene, or any controlled substance as defined in chapter 28 of title 21, or any combination thereof, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and shall be punished as provided in subsection (d) of this section.

(b) (1) Any person charged under subsection (a) of this section whose blood alcohol concentration is one-tenth of one percent (.1%) or more by weight as shown by a chemical analysis of a blood, breath, or urine sample shall be guilty of violating subsection (a) of this section. This provision shall not preclude a conviction based on other admissible evidence. Proof of guilt under this section may also be based on evidence that the person charged was under the influence of intoxicating liquor, drugs, toluene, or any controlled substance defined in chapter 28 of title 21, or any combination thereof, to a degree which rendered such person incapable of safely operating a vehicle. The fact that any person charged with violating this section is or has been legally entitled to use alcohol or a drug shall not constitute a defense against any charge of violating this section.

(2) Whoever operates or otherwise drives any vehicle in the state with a blood presence of any scheduled controlled substance as defined within chapter 28 of title 21, as shown by analysis of a blood or urine sample, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and shall be punished as provided in subsection (d) of this section.

(c) In any criminal prosecution for a violation of subsection (a) of this section, evidence as to the amount of intoxicating liquor, toluene, or any controlled substance as defined in chapter 28 of title 21, or any combination thereof in the defendant's blood at the time alleged as shown by a chemical analysis of the defendant's breath, blood, or urine or other bodily substance shall be admissible and competent, provided that evidence is presented that the following conditions have been complied with:

(1) The defendant has consented to the taking of the test upon which the analysis is made. Evidence that the defendant had refused to submit to the test shall not be admissible unless the defendant elects to testify.

(2) A true copy of the report of the test result was mailed within seventy-two (72) hours of the taking of the test to the person submitting to a breath test.

(3) Any person submitting to a chemical test of blood, urine, or other body fluids shall have a true copy of the report of the test result mailed to him or her within thirty (30) days following the taking of the test.

(4) The test was performed according to methods and with equipment approved by the director of the department of health of the state of Rhode Island and by an authorized individual.

(5) Equipment used for the conduct of the tests by means of breath analysis had been tested for accuracy within thirty (30) days preceding the test by personnel qualified as hereinbefore provided, and breathalyzer operators shall be qualified and certified by the department of health within three hundred sixty-five (365) days of the test.

(6) The person arrested and charged with operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of intoxicating liquor, toluene, or any controlled substance as defined in chapter 28 of title 21, or, any combination thereof in violation of subsection (a) of this section was afforded the opportunity to have an additional chemical test and the officer arresting or so charging the person informed the person of this right and afforded him or her a reasonable opportunity to exercise the same, and a notation to this effect is made in the official records of the case in the police department. Refusal to permit an additional chemical test shall render incompetent and inadmissible in evidence the original report.

(d) (1) Every person convicted of a first violation shall be subject to a fine of not less than one hundred ($100) dollars nor more than three hundred dollars ($300) and shall be required to perform ten (10) to sixty (60) hours of public community restitution and/or shall be imprisoned for up to one year. The sentence may be served in any unit of the adult correctional institution in the discretion of the sentencing judge. The person's driving license shall be suspended for a period of three (3) months to six (6) months. The sentencing judge shall require attendance at a special course on driving while intoxicated or under the influence of a controlled substance and/or alcoholic or drug treatment for the individual.

(2) Every person convicted of a second violation within a five (5) year period regardless of whether the prior violation and subsequent conviction was a violation and subsequent conviction under this statute or under the driving under the influence of liquor or drugs statute of any other state, shall be subject to a mandatory fine of four hundred dollars ($400). The person's driving license shall be suspended for a period of one year to two (2) years, and the individual shall be sentenced to not less than ten (10) days nor more than one year in jail. The sentence may be served in any unit of the adult correctional institution in the discretion of the sentencing judge; however, not less than forty-eight (48) hours of imprisonment shall be served consecutively. The sentencing judge shall require alcohol or drug treatment for the individual, and may prohibit such person from operating a motor vehicle that is not equipped with an ignition interlock system for a period of not more than two (2) years following the completion of the sentence as provided in 31-27-2.8.

(3) (i) Every person convicted of a third or subsequent violation within a five (5) year period regardless of whether any prior violation and subsequent conviction was a violation and subsequent conviction under this statute or under the driving under the influence of liquor or drugs statute of any other state, shall be subject to a mandatory fine of four hundred ($400) dollars. The person's driving license shall be suspended for a period of two (2) years to three (3) years, and the individual shall be sentenced to not less than six (6) months nor more than one year in jail. The sentence may be served in any unit of the adult correctional institution in the discretion of the sentencing judge; however, not less than forty-eight (48) hours of imprisonment shall be served consecutively. The sentencing judge shall require alcohol or drug treatment for the individual, and may prohibit such person from operating a motor vehicle that is not equipped with an ignition interlock system for a period of not more than two (2) years following the completion of the sentence as provided in 31-27-2.8.

(ii) In addition to the foregoing penalties, every person convicted of a third or subsequent violation within a five (5) year period regardless of whether any prior violation and subsequent conviction was a violation and subsequent conviction under this statute or under the driving under the influence of liquor or drugs statute of any other state shall be subject, in the discretion of the sentencing judge, to having the vehicle owned and operated by the violator seized and sold by the state of Rhode Island, with all funds obtained thereby to be transferred to the general fund.

(4) For purposes of determining the period of license suspension, a prior violation shall constitute any charge brought and sustained under the provisions of this section or 31-27-2.1, as amended.

Any person over the age of eighteen (18) who is convicted under this section for operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, other drugs, or a combination thereof, while a child under the age of thirteen (13) years was present as a passenger in the motor vehicle when the offense was committed may be sentenced to a term of imprisonment of not more than one year and further shall not be entitled to the benefit of suspension or deferment of this sentence. The sentence imposed under this section may be served in any unit of the adult correctional institution in the discretion of the sentencing judge.

(5) (i) Any person convicted of a violation under this section shall pay a highway assessment fine of five hundred dollars ($500). The assessment shall be imposed on July 1, 1982 and every year thereafter, and which shall be deposited into the general fund. The assessment provided for by this subsection shall be collected from a violator before any other fines authorized by this section.

(ii) Any person convicted of a violation under this section shall be assessed a fee. The fee shall be as follows:

FISCAL YEAR

FISCAL YEAR

FISCAL YEAR

   

1993-1995

1996-1999

2000-2006

   

$147

$173

$86

(6) (i) If the person convicted of violating this section is under the age of eighteen (18) years, for the first violation he or she shall be required to perform ten (10) to sixty (60) hours of public community restitution, and the juvenile's driving license shall be suspended for a period of six (6) months, and may be suspended for a period up to eighteen (18) months. The sentencing judge shall also require attendance at a special course on driving while intoxicated or under the influence of a controlled substance and alcohol or drug education and/or treatment for the juvenile. The juvenile may also be required to pay a highway assessment fine of no more than five hundred dollars ($500), and the assessment imposed shall be deposited into the general fund.

(ii) If the person convicted of violating this section is under the age of eighteen (18) years, for a second or subsequent violation regardless of whether any prior violation and subsequent conviction was a violation and subsequent under this statute or under the driving under the influence of liquor or drugs statute of any other state, he or she shall be subject to a mandatory suspension of his or her driving license until such time as he or she is twenty-one (21) years of age and may, in the discretion of the sentencing judge, also be sentenced to the Rhode Island training school for a period of not more than one year and/or a fine of not more than five hundred dollars ($500).

(7) Any person convicted of a violation under this section may undergo a clinical assessment at a facility approved by the department of health. Should this clinical assessment determine problems of alcohol, drug abuse, or psychological problems associated with alcoholic or drug abuse, this person shall be referred to the T.A.S.C. (treatment alternatives to street crime) program for treatment placement, case management, and monitoring.

(e) Percent by weight of alcohol in the blood shall be based upon milligrams of alcohol per one hundred (100) cubic centimeters of blood.

(f) (1) There is hereby established an alcohol and drug safety unit within the registry to administer an alcohol safety action program. The program shall provide for placement and follow-up for persons who are required to pay the highway safety assessment. The alcohol and drug safety action program will be administered in conjunction with alcohol and drug programs within the department of health. The alcohol and drug safety action program shall be implemented on January 1, 1983.

(2) Persons convicted under the provisions of this chapter shall be required to attend a special course on driving while intoxicated or under the influence of a controlled substance, and/or participate in an alcohol or drug treatment program. The course shall take into consideration any language barrier which may exist as to any person ordered to attend, and shall provide for instruction reasonably calculated to communicate the purposes of the course in accordance with the requirements of the subsection; provided, however, that any costs reasonably incurred in connection with the provision of such accommodation shall be borne by the person being retrained. A copy of any violation under this section shall be forwarded by the court to the alcohol and drug safety unit. In the event that persons convicted under the provisions of this chapter fail to attend and complete the above course or treatment program, as ordered by the judge, then the person may be brought before the court, and after a hearing as to why the order of the court was not followed, may be sentenced to jail for a period not exceeding one year.

(3) The alcohol and drug safety action program within the registry shall be funded by general revenue appropriations commencing on July 1, 1994.

(g) The director of the health department of the state of Rhode Island is empowered to make and file with the secretary of state, regulations which prescribe the techniques and methods of chemical analysis of the person's body fluids or breath, and the qualifications and certification of individuals authorized to administer such testing and analysis.

(h) Jurisdiction for violations of this section is hereby given to the district court for persons eighteen (18) years of age or older and to the family court for persons under the age of eighteen (18) years, and the courts shall have full authority to impose any sentence authorized and to order the suspension of any license for violations of this section. All trials in the district court and family court of violations of the section shall be scheduled within thirty (30) days of the arraignment date. No continuance or postponement shall be granted except for good cause shown. Such continuances as are necessary shall be granted for the shortest practicable time.

(i) No fines, suspensions, assessments, alcohol or drug treatment programs, course on driving while intoxicated or under the influence of a controlled substance, public community restitution, or jail provided for under this section can be suspended.

(j) An order to attend a special course on driving while intoxicated that shall be administered in cooperation with a college or university accredited by the state, shall include a provision to pay a reasonable tuition for the course in an amount not less than twenty-five dollars ($25.00), and a fee of one hundred seventy-five dollars ($175.00), which fee shall be deposited into the general fund.

(k) For the purposes of this section, any test of a sample of blood, breath, or urine for the presence of alcohol, which relies in whole or in part upon the principle of infrared light absorption is considered a chemical test.

(l) If any provision of this section or the application thereof shall for any reason be judged invalid, such a judgment shall not affect, impair, or invalidate the remainder of the section, but shall be confined in this effect to the provision or application directly involved in the controversy giving rise to the judgment.

SECTION 41. Section 31-28-7.3 of the General Laws in Chapter 31-28 entitled "Parking Facilities and Privileges" is hereby amended to read as follows:

31-28-7.3. Disability parking enforcement program. -- (a) The state police, department of environmental management, airport corporation, capitol police, department of mental health, retardation and hospitals, and the state operated colleges shall establish a disability parking enforcement enhancement programs no later than January 1, 2000. The program will be designed to improve enforcement of disability parking laws on state-owned property and in parking facilities serving space leased or owned by the state, including state departments, agencies, boards and commissions, and quasi-governmental corporations. Citations issued in conjunction with this program shall be submitted to the administrative adjudication court or its successor entity for collection pursuant to 31-28-7 and 31-28-7.1 and the fines collected through shall be paid over to the state agency or college that issued the citation.

(b) The several cities and towns shall establish disability parking enforcement enhancement programs no later than July 1, 2000. Citations issued in conjunction with local enforcement programs shall be submitted to the municipal court, where established, or to the administrative adjudication court or its successor entity. Fines collected through citations issued in accordance with local enforcement program specifications shall be paid over to the city or town or pursuant to 31-28-7 and 31-28-7.1.

(c) Disability parking enforcement enhancement plans -

(1) The state police, department of environmental management, airport corporation, capitol police, department of mental health, retardation and hospitals, and the state operated colleges shall submit a disability parking enforcement enhancement plan to the governor's commission on disabilities no later than November 1, 1999.

(2) Cities and towns shall submit a disability parking enforcement enhancement plan to the governor's commission on the disability no later than April 1, 2000.

(3) The disability parking enforcement enhancement plans shall describe the enforcement program which the state police, department of environmental management, airport corporation, capitol police, department of mental health, retardation and hospitals, the state operated colleges or the municipality intends to establish.

(4) The disability parking enforcement enhancement plan shall be reviewed by governor's commission on disabilities within sixty (60) days of receipt and suggest improvements to the disability parking enforcement enhancement plans, that shall not be construed as required amendments.

(d) Beginning January 1, 2001 and on each January 1 thereafter, cities and towns and the state police, department of environmental management, airport corporations, capitol police, department of mental health, retardation and hospitals, and the state operated colleges shall be required to submit to the governors commission on disabilities an annual progress report chronicling the collections of fines, procedures used, convictions, and any problems or successes which result from the disability parking enforcement enhancement program. Following receipt of an annual program report, the governor's commission on disabilities may suggest improvements to a disability parking enforcement enhancement program.

(e) The types of disability parking enforcement enhancement programs which may be put in place in each municipality, and by the state police, department of environmental management, airport corporation, capitol police, department of mental health, retardation and hospitals, and the state operated colleges, may include, but shall not be limited to:

(1) Enforcement programs which utilize persons deputized for the purpose of the disability parking enforcement enhancement program. The disability parking enforcement deputies shall be required to complete a minimum of four (4) hours training in parking enforcement before being assigned to the program. Each municipality and the state police, department of environmental management, airport corporation, capitol police, department of mental health, retardation and hospitals, and the state operated colleges shall provide adequate training and thereafter shall assume all liability associated with disability parking enforcement.

(2) Enforcement programs which specifically designate paid and trained personnel as staff for the disability parking enforcement enhancement program. These personnel are not limited to on-duty police officers, but may also include officers to be paid overtime, auxiliary personnel, special forces, retired personnel, and other paid employee deemed by the responsible authority to be competent and qualified.

SECTION 42. Section 31-36-20 of the General Laws in Chapter 31-36 entitled "Motor Fuel Tax" is hereby amended to read as follows:

31-36-20. Disposition of proceeds. -- (a) Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, all moneys paid into the general treasury under the provisions of this chapter or chapter 37 of this title shall be applied to and held in a separate fund and be deposited in such depositories as may be selected by the general treasurer to the credit of the fund, which fund shall be known as the Intermodal Surface Transportation Fund; provided, however, that for fiscal year beginning July 1, 1999 and thereafter, five and one half cents ($0.055) per gallon of the tax imposed and accruing for the liability under the provisions of 31-36-7, less refunds and credits, shall be transferred to the Rhode Island public transit authority as provided under 39-18-21, and one cent ($.01) per gallon shall be transferred to the Elderly/Disabled Transportation Program of the department of elderly affairs, and the remaining cents per gallon shall be available for general revenue as determined by the following schedule:

(1) For the fiscal year 2000, three and one half cents shall be available for general revenue.

(2) For the fiscal year 2001, two cents shall be available for general revenue.

(3) For the fiscal year 2002, one cent shall be available for general revenue.

(4) For the fiscal year 2003, no funding shall be available for general revenue.

All deposits and transfers of funds made by the tax administrator under this section including those to the Rhode Island public transit authority, the department of elderly affairs and the general fund, shall be made within twenty-four (24) hours of receipt or previous deposit of the funds in question.

(b) Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, all other funds in the fund shall be dedicated to the Rhode Island department of transportation, subject to annual appropriation by the general assembly. The director of the department of transportation shall submit to the general assembly, budget office and office of the governor annually an accounting of all amounts deposited in and credited to such fund together with a planned budget for proposed expenditures for the succeeding fiscal year in compliance with 35-3-1 and 35-3-4. On order of the director of transportation, the state controller is hereby authorized and directed to draw his or her orders upon the general treasurer for the payment of such sum of such portion thereof as may be required from time to time upon receipt by him or her of properly authenticated vouchers.

(c) At any time the amount of the fund is insufficient to fund the expenditures of the department of transportation, not to exceed the amount authorized by the general assembly, the general treasurer is authorized from time to time, with the approval of the governor and the director of administration, in anticipation of the receipts of monies enumerated in 31-36-20 to advance sums to the fund, for the purposes specified in 31-36-20, any funds of the state not specifically held for any particular purpose, provided, however, that all such advances made to the fund shall be returned to the general fund forthwith upon the receipt by such fund of proceeds resulting from the receipt of monies to the extent of such advances.

SECTION 43. Section 31-38-4 of the General Laws in Chapter 31-38 entitled "Inspection of Motor Vehicles" is hereby amended to read as follows:

31-38-4. Director of department of administration to require periodic inspection. -- (a) (1) On and after November 1, 1977, t The director of administration shall at least once each year, but not more frequently than twice each year, or on the schedule defined pursuant to chapter 47.1 of this title require that every vehicle, trailer, semi-trailer, and pole trailer registered in this state or upon a retail seller's premise, be inspected and that an official certificate of inspection and approval be obtained for the vehicle, provided, however, that the director of administration shall require the first inspection of any new motor vehicle within two (2) years from the date of purchase or before the vehicle accumulates twenty-four thousand (24,000) miles whichever occurs first.

(2) The inspections shall be made and the certificates obtained with respect to the mechanism, brakes, and equipment of the vehicle as shall be designated by the director of department of administration.

(3) The director of the department of administration is hereby authorized to make necessary rules and regulations for the administration and enforcement of this chapter including, but not limited to, upgraded standards of operation and standards for mechanical testing equipment, and to designate any period or periods of time during which sellers at retail and owners of any vehicles, subject to this chapter, shall display upon the vehicles certificates of inspection and approval, or shall produce the same upon demand of any proper officer or employee of the department of administration designated by the director of the department of administration.

(b) The director of the department of administration may authorize the acceptance in this state of a certificate of inspection and approval issued in another state having an inspection law similar to this chapter, and may extend the time within which a certificate shall be obtained.

(c) The director of the department of administration, or the director's designee, may suspend the registration of any vehicle which he or she determines is in such unsafe condition as to constitute a menace to safety, or which, after notice and demand, is not equipped as required in this chapter or for which a required certificate of inspection and approval has not been obtained.

(d) The director of the department of administration shall provide for a staggered inspection system by regulations.

SECTION 44. Section 31-40-2 of the General Laws in Chapter 31-40 entitled "Habitual Offenders" is hereby amended to read as follows:

31-40-2. "Habitual offender" defined. -- An habitual offender shall be any person, resident or nonresident, whose record, as maintained in the office of the registry of motor vehicles, shows that the person has accumulated the convictions, or findings of delinquency or waywardness in the case of juveniles, for separate and distinct offenses, described in subdivisions (1), (2), and (3) of this section, committed within a three-year period, provided that where more than one included offense shall be committed within a six (6) hour period the multiple offenses shall, on the first such occasion, be treated for the purposes of this article as one offense, provided the person charged has no record of prior offenses chargeable under this article, and provided further that the date of the offense most recently committed occurs on or after July 1, 1974, and within three (3) years of the date of all other offenses the conviction for which is included in subdivision (1), (2), or (3) as follows:

(1) Three (3) or more convictions, or findings of delinquency or waywardness in the case of a juvenile, singularly or in combination, of the following separate and distinct offenses arising out of separate acts:

(i) Voluntary or involuntary manslaughter resulting from the operation of a motor vehicle;

(ii) Driving or operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of liquor or drugs in violation of 31-27-2;

(iii) Driving a motor vehicle while his or her license, permit, or privilege to drive a motor vehicle has been suspended or revoked in violation of 31-27-2.1 or chapter 11 of this title;

(iv) Willfully operating a motor vehicle without a license;

(v) Knowingly making any false affidavit or swearing or affirming falsely to any matter or thing required by the motor vehicle laws or as to information required in the administration of the laws;

(vi) Any offense punishable as a felony under the motor vehicle laws of Rhode Island or any felony in the commission of which a motor vehicle is used;

(vii) Failure of the driver of a motor vehicle involved in an accident resulting in the death or injury of any person to stop close to the scene of the accident and report his or her identity in violation of 31-26-1; or

(viii) Failure of the driver of a motor vehicle involved in an accident resulting only in damage to an attended or unattended vehicle or other property in excess of one hundred fifty dollars ($150) to stop close to the scene of the accident and report his or her identity or otherwise report the accident.

(2) Six (6) or more convictions, or findings of delinquency or waywardness in the case of a juvenile, of separate and distinct offenses, singularly or in combination, in the operation of a motor vehicle which are required to be reported to the registry of motor vehicles and the commission whereof requires the registry of motor vehicles or authorizes a court to suspend or revoke the privilege to operate motor vehicles on the highways of this state for a period of thirty (30) days or more, and the convictions shall include those offenses enumerated in subdivision (1)(ii) above when taken with and added to those offenses described herein.

(3) The offenses included in subdivisions (1) and (2) hereof shall be deemed to include offenses under any valid town or city ordinance paralleling and substantially conforming to the state statutory provisions cited in subdivisions (1) and (2) hereof and all changes in or amendments thereof, and any federal law, and law of another state or any valid town, city, or county ordinance of another state substantially conforming to the aforesaid statutory provisions.

SECTION 45. Sections 31-44-2 and 31-44-7.1 of the General Laws in Chapter 31-44 entitled "Mobile and Manufactured Homes" are hereby amended to read as follows:

31-44-2. Evictions - Termination of tenancy. -- (a) After July 1, 1985, a A tenancy may be terminated by a park owner or operator pursuant to chapter 18 of title 34, provided, however, that jurisdiction as it relates to this chapter shall be in the district court but subject to one or more of the following reasons and limitations which shall take precedence over any conflicting state statute or local ordinance;

(1) Nonpayment of rent, utility charges, or reasonable incidental service charges; provided that no action for possession shall be maintained if prior to the expiration of a notice to quit the tenant shall pay or tender all arrearages due, including a late charge of five percent (5%) of the monthly rent due after a seven (7) day grace period for the rental payment has elapsed.

(2) Failure of the tenant to comply with local ordinances or state or federal law or regulations relating to mobile and manufactured homes or mobile and manufactured home parks, provided that the tenant is first given written notice of his or her failure to comply with the laws or regulations and a reasonable opportunity thereafter to comply with the laws or regulations.

(3) Damage by the tenant to the demised property, reasonable wear and tear excepted.

(4) Repeated conduct of the tenant, upon the mobile and manufactured home park premises, which disturbs the peace and quiet of other tenants in the mobile and manufactured home park.

(5) Failure of the tenant to comply with reasonable written rules and regulations of the mobile and manufactured home park as established by the park owner or operator in the rental agreement at the inception of the tenancy or as amended subsequently with the written acknowledgement that the tenant has seen the amended rules, or without his or her consent upon three (3) months written notice; provided that the tenant is first given written notice of his or her failure to comply and a reasonable opportunity thereafter to comply with the rules and regulations. Nothing in this section, however, shall be construed to permit a park owner or operator to vary the terms of a written or oral rental agreement without notification to the tenant.

(6) Condemnation or change of use of the mobile and manufactured home park.

(b) No tenancy, however created, in a mobile and manufactured home park may be terminated, on or after July 1, 1985, by a mobile and manufactured home park owner or operator except upon giving notice in writing to the tenant in the manner prescribed herein to remove from the premises within a period of not less than sixty (60) days; provided that upon grounds of nonpayment of rent, a tenancy may be terminated upon giving thirty (30) days notice.

31-44-7.1. Security deposits. -- In any rental agreement for the lease of a mobile home wherein the licensee requires the payment of a security deposit by the resident:

(1) The deposit shall accumulate interest on an annual basis at the rate of three percent (3%).

(2) No deposit will be required which is more than the amount of one month's rent.

(3) The interest shall be paid to the resident annually or upon termination of the rental.

(4) Upon termination of the rental, the licensee shall return the deposit along with accumulated interest within thirty (30) days, or shall provide the resident with a written itemized list of damages caused by the resident during the rental, other than ordinary wear and tear, and return to the resident the difference, if any, between the deposit and interest and the damages sustained.

(5) The resident shall provide the licensee with a forwarding address upon vacating the premises so as to permit the licensee to return the deposit.

(6) If the licensee fails to either return the deposit within thirty (30) days or pay interest on same, he or she shall be liable for damages not to exceed twice the amount of the deposit and three (3) times the amount of interest due.

(7) Any security deposits received by the licensee shall be deposited in a savings account and earmarked specifically as a security deposit account, and that fund shall not be used by the licensee for any purpose except as provided in subdivision (4) of this section.

(8) No security deposit shall be required for the rental of a mobile home lot or space; and any security deposit collected by a mobile home park owner prior to July 10, 1990 shall be refunded in full not later than sixty (60) days.

SECTION 46. Sections 31-47-1.1, 31-47-2, 31-47-3.1 and 31-47-18 of the General Laws in Chapter 31-47 entitled "Motor Vehicles Reparations Act" are hereby amended to read as follows:

31-47-1.1. Legislative findings and intent. -- WHEREAS, the General Assembly has conducted extensive hearings on the issue of mandatory automobile insurance and finds that:

(1) Mandatory automobile liability insurance will not guarantee that all drivers will carry automobile liability insurance and in other states with mandatory automobile insurance nearly twenty percent (20%) to twenty-five percent (25%) of drivers do not comply with the state mandate and drive without insurance;

(2) Because of the evidence described in subdivision (1), Rhode Island drivers will need to carry additional insurance, to protect themselves from harm by uninsured motorists;

(3) All presently uninsured drivers who try to acquire automobile insurance will be placed in the assigned risk pool regardless of a good driving record, at an excessive rate;

(4) The state of Rhode Island ranks the eighth (8th) highest in the country for the cost of automobile insurance litigation per capita, this high cost of legal action adds to the already high cost of automobile insurance;

(5) No-fault insurance can reduce the cost of automobile insurance by reducing litigation and right-to-sue, but evidence also indicates that no-fault insurance can increase the cost of insurance if not properly enacted;

(6) A proposed rate increase in Rhode Island Auto Insurance Plan of thirty-four percent (34%) is scheduled to take effect on July 1, 1992, and has been granted without full disclosure by insurance companies of their investments, profits, losses, administrative costs and other pertinent information to justify such rate increase;

(7) Fraud, theft and inflated automobile repair costs are significant elements of the increased cost of automobile insurance which must be reduced;

(8) The Governor of the state has agreed to immediately institute a blue ribbon task force to investigate the causes for the high cost of automobile insurance, recommend remedies to reduce the cost of automobile insurance and prepare legislation for introduction prior to January 1, 1993. The scope of the task force shall include but not be limited to review of:

(i) Procedures and processes concerning claims, appraisals, adjustments and auto repair charges,

(ii) Costs of litigation, including the imposition of ceiling or caps on legal fees,

(iii) Disclosure by insurance companies of all costs to do business, including those that affect premium rates,

(iv) Enforcement and restitution procedures.

The task force shall make specific recommendations to the general assembly pertaining to the alternatives of no-fault insurance, traditional liability and so-called "choice" legislation which provides an option of no-fault or traditional liability insurance.

31-47-2. Definitions. -- As used in this chapter the term:

(1) "Accident" or "motor vehicle accident" means any accident involving a motor vehicle which results in bodily injury to or death of any person, or damage to the property of any person in excess of five hundred dollars ($500).

(2) "Commissioner" shall mean the insurance commissioner of this state.

(3) "Dealer engaged in the business of leasing motor vehicles" means any person engaged in the business of regularly making available, offering to make available, or arranging for another person to use a motor vehicle pursuant to a bailment, lease, or other contractual arrangement.

(4) "Driver" means every person who drives or is in actual physical control of a motor vehicle.

(5) "Financial security bond" shall mean for each motor vehicle a bond executed by the owner and by a surety company duly authorized to transact business in this state.

(6) "Financial security deposit" shall mean for each motor vehicle the deposit with the assistant director of seventy-five thousand dollars ($75,000) in cash, or securities, such as may legally be purchased by savings banks or trust funds, of a market value of seventy-five thousand dollars ($75,000).

(7) "License" includes any license, permit, or privilege to operate a motor vehicle issued under the laws of this state including:

(i) Any temporary instruction permit or examiner's driving permit;

(ii) The privilege of any person to drive a motor vehicle whether or not such person holds a valid license; or

(iii) Any nonresident's operating privilege.

(8) "Motor vehicle" means every vehicle required to display registration plates for operation upon public highways of this state.

(9) "Nonresident" means every person who is not a resident of this state.

(10) "Nonresident's operating privilege" means the privilege conferred upon a nonresident by the laws of this state pertaining to the operation by that person of a motor vehicle, or the use of a motor vehicle owned by that person, in this state.

(11) "Owner" means a person who holds the legal title of a motor vehicle. If a motor vehicle is the subject of an agreement for conditional sale or lease with the right of purchase upon performance of the conditions stated in the agreement and with an immediate right of possession vested in the conditional vendee or lessee, the vendee or lessee is the owner. If a mortgagor of a motor vehicle is entitled to possession, the mortgagor is the owner.

(12) "Owner's policy of liability insurance" shall mean a policy:

(i) Affording coverage as defined in the minimum provisions prescribed in a regulation which shall be promulgated by the commissioner at least ninety (90) days prior to July 1, 1992. The commissioner, before promulgating such regulations or any amendments thereof, shall consult with all insurers licensed to write automobile liability insurance in this state and shall not prescribe minimum provisions which fail to reflect the provisions of automobile liability insurance policies issued within this state at the date of the regulation or amendment thereof. Nothing contained in regulation or in this chapter shall prohibit any insurer from affording coverage under an owner's policy of liability insurance more liberal than that required by the minimum provisions. Every owner's policy of liability insurance shall provide insurance subject to the regulation against loss from the liability imposed by law for damages, including damages for care and loss of services, because of bodily injury to or death of any person and injury to or destruction of property arising out of the ownership, maintenance, use, or operation of a specific motor vehicle or motor vehicles within the state of Rhode Island or elsewhere in the United States in North America or the Dominion of Canada, subject to a limit, exclusive of interest and costs, with respect to each motor vehicle of twenty-five thousand dollars ($25,000) because of bodily injury to or death of one person in any one accident, and subject to the limit for one person, to a limit of fifty thousand dollars ($50,000) because of bodily injury to or death of two (2) or more persons in any one accident, and a limit of twenty-five thousand dollars ($25,000) because of injury to or destruction of property of others in any one accident, or seventy-five thousand dollars ($75,000) combined single limit. Any insurer authorized to issue an owner's policy of liability insurance as provided for in this chapter may, pending the issue of the policy, make an agreement to be known as a binder, or may, in lieu of the policy, issue a renewal endorsement or evidence of renewal of an existing policy, each of which shall be construed to provide indemnity or protection in like manner and to the same extent as the policy. The provisions of this chapter shall apply to such binders, renewal endorsements, or evidences of renewal; and

(ii) In the case of a vehicle registered in this state, a policy issued by an insurer duly authorized to transact business in this state; or

(iii) In the case of a vehicle registered in another state in the name of a nonresident, either a policy issued by an authorized insurer, or a policy issued by an unauthorized insurer authorized to transact business in the state of the nonresident's residence if the unauthorized insurer files with the commissioner in a form to be approved by him or her a statement consenting to service of process and declaring its policies shall be deemed to be varied to comply with the requirements of this chapter; and

(iv) The form of which has been approved by the commissioner.

No such policy shall be issued or delivered in this state until a copy of the form of the policy shall have been on file with the commissioner for at least thirty (30) days, unless sooner approved in writing by the commissioner, nor if within that period of thirty (30) days the commissioner shall have notified the carrier in writing that in the commissioner's opinion specifying the reasons therefor, the form of the policy does not comply with the laws of the state.

(13) "Person" includes every natural person, firm, partnership, association, or corporation.

(14) "Proof of financial security" shall mean proof of ability to respond in damages for liability arising out of the ownership, maintenance, or use of a motor vehicle as evidenced by an owner's policy of liability insurance, a financial security bond, a financial security deposit, or qualification as a self insurer under this title, or in the case of a nonresident, under self insurance provisions of the laws of the jurisdiction of that nonresident.

(15) "Registrar" shall mean the registrar for motor vehicles in the department of administration.

(16) "Registration" means registration certificates and registration plates issued under the laws of this state pertaining to the registration of motor vehicles.

(17) "Self insurer" shall mean a person who shall have been determined by the assistant director in accordance with this title, to be financially responsible.

(18) "State" when used in this chapter shall, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise, mean any state, territory, or possession of the United States, the District of Columbia, or any province of the Dominion of Canada.

31-47-3.1. Registration application. -- (a) On and after November 1, 1993, n No motor vehicle shall be registered and no registration renewed in this state unless the application for the registration of a motor vehicle shall contain a statement to be signed by the applicant who does all of the following:

(1) States that the applicant will not operate, or allow to be operated, the registered motor vehicle or any other motor vehicle unless all those motor vehicles shall be covered by financial security;

(2) Contains a brief summary of the purposes and operation of this chapter, the rights and duties of the applicant and the penalties for violation of this chapter;

(3) Warns the applicant that this chapter does not prevent the possibility that the applicant may be involved in an accident with an owner or operator of a motor vehicle who is without financial responsibility.

(b) (1) In the case of a person who purchases any motor vehicle from a licensed motor vehicle dealer, who agrees to make application for registration of the motor vehicle on behalf of the purchaser, the person shall sign a statement that complies with subsection (a) of this section.

(2) In the case of a person who leases any motor vehicle from a dealer engaged in the business of leasing motor vehicles who agrees to make application for registration of the motor vehicle on behalf of the lessee, the person shall sign a statement that complies with subsection (a) of this section, and the dealer shall do either of the following:

(a) Submit the statement signed by the person to the registry of motor vehicles;

(b) Sign and submit a statement that certifies that the statement has been signed and filed with the dealer or incorporated into the lease.

(c) The registrar of motor vehicles shall prescribe the form for all statements required under this section and the manner in which these statements shall be presented to the applicant. Statements shall be designed to enable the applicant to retain a copy.

(d) An application for an operator's, chauffeur's, restricted or probationary license, or renewal of those licenses shall contain a statement to be signed by the applicant that does all of the following:

(1) States that the applicant will not operate a motor vehicle in this state, unless he or she maintains, or has maintained on his or her behalf, financial security;

(2) Contains a brief summary of the purposes and operation of this chapter, the rights and duties of the applicant and the penalties for violation of this chapter;

(3) Warns the applicant that the financial responsibility law does not prevent the possibility that the applicant may be involved in an accident with an owner or operator of a motor vehicle who is without financial security.

31-47-18. Automobile liability insurance rates. -- Any general or public law to the contrary notwithstanding, at least ninety (90) days prior to the effective date of this chapter, the commissioner shall, after consulting with all insurers licensed to write automobile liability insurance in this state, promulgate regulations which provide that automobile liability insurance rates shall upon the effective date of this chapter, take into account the past claim experience of the applicant for the insurance and incorporate the principles used in so called "merit rating" or "experience rating" rate plans which are now in effect in other states.

SECTION 47. Sections 31-47.1-3 and 31-47.1-10 of the General Laws in Chapter 31-47.1 entitled "Motor Vehicle Emissions Inspection Program" are hereby amended to read as follows:

31-47.1-3. Inspection requirement. -- (a) Beginning no later than June 1, 1999, e Each motor vehicle subject to the provisions of this chapter shall be subject to a motor vehicle emissions inspection, conducted no more frequently than annually. Different classes of motor vehicles or model years may be subject to different inspection frequencies.

(b) Motor vehicles subject to this chapter shall be determined by regulations, and shall include, but not necessarily be limited to: all 1975 and later model year light duty vehicles and light duty trucks up to and including eight thousand five hundred pounds (8,500 lbs.) gross vehicle weight rating.

(c) Any motor vehicle which is inspected and found not to comply with the standards and criteria for motor vehicle emissions inspections must, within thirty (30) days of the inspection, be reinspected and found to comply with the standards and criteria for motor vehicle emissions inspections, or have received a waiver certificate, or not be operated on the highways of the state.

(d) Any certificate issued under this chapter shall always be carried in an easily accessible place in or about the vehicle for which the certificate was issued.

31-47.1-10. Proceedings for enforcement. -- (a) The district court shall have jurisdiction to enforce the criminal penalty provisions of this chapter.

(b) The administrative adjudication court traffic tribunal shall have jurisdiction to enforce the provisions of any rule or regulation issued by the department pursuant to this chapter. The administrative adjudication division of enforcement of the department of environmental management shall have jurisdiction to enforce the provisions of any rule or regulation issued by the department of environmental management pursuant to this chapter.

SECTION 48. Section 44-18-30 of the General Laws in Chapter 44-18 entitled "Sales and Use Taxes -Liability and Computation" is hereby amended to read as follows:

44-18-30. Gross receipts exempt from sales and use taxes. -- There are exempted from the taxes imposed by this chapter the following gross receipts:

(1) Sales and uses beyond constitutional power of state. From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption in this state of tangible personal property the gross receipts from the sale of which, or the storage, use, or other consumption of which, this state is prohibited from taxing under the Constitution of the United States or under the constitution of this state.

(2) Newspapers. (i) From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption in this state of any newspaper.

(ii) "Newspaper" means an unbound publication printed on newsprint which contains news, editorial comment, opinions, features, advertising matter, and other matters of public interest.

(iii) "Newspaper" does not include a magazine, handbill, circular, flyer, sales catalog, or similar item unless the item is printed for and distributed as a part of a newspaper.

(3) School meals. From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption in this state of meals served by public, private, or parochial schools, school districts, colleges, universities, student organizations, and parent teacher associations to the students or teachers of a school, college, or university whether the meals are served by the educational institutions or by a food service or management entity under contract to the educational institutions.

(4) Containers. (i) From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption in this state of:

(A) Nonreturnable containers, including boxes, paper bags, and wrapping materials which are biodegradable and all bags and wrapping materials utilized in the medical and healing arts, when sold without the contents to persons who place the contents in the container and sell the contents with the container.

(B) Containers when sold with the contents if the sale price of the contents is not required to be included in the measure of the taxes imposed by this chapter.

(C) Returnable containers when sold with the contents in connection with a retail sale of the contents or when resold for refilling.

(ii) As used in this subdivision, the term "returnable containers" means containers of a kind customarily returned by the buyer of the contents for reuse. All other containers are "nonreturnable containers."

(5) Charitable, educational, and religious organizations. (i) From the sale to as herein defined, and from the storage, use, and other consumption in this state or any other state of the United States of America of tangible personal property by hospitals not operated for a profit, "educational institutions" as defined in subdivision (18) not operated for a profit, churches, orphanages, and other institutions or organizations operated exclusively for religious or charitable purposes, interest free loan associations not operated for profit, nonprofit organized sporting leagues and associations and bands for boys and girls under the age of nineteen (19) years, the following vocational student organizations that are state chapters of national vocational students organizations: distributive education clubs of America, (DECA); future business leaders of America/phi beta lambda (FBLA/PBL); future farmers of America (FFA); future homemakers of America/home economics related occupations (FHA/HERD); and vocational industrial clubs of America (VICA), organized nonprofit golden age and senior citizens clubs for men and women, and parent teacher associations.

(ii) In the case of contracts entered into with the federal government, its agencies or instrumentalities, this state or any other state of the United States of America, its agencies, any city, town, district, or other political subdivision of the states, hospitals not operated for profit, educational institutions not operated for profit, churches, orphanages, and other institutions or organizations operated exclusively for religious or charitable purposes, the contractor may purchase such materials and supplies (materials and/or supplies are defined as those which are essential to the project) that are to be utilized in the construction of the projects being performed under the contracts without payment of the tax.

(iii) The contractor shall not charge any sales or use tax to any exempt agency, institution, or organization but shall in that instance provide his or her suppliers with certificates in the form as determined by the division of taxation showing the reason for exemption; and the contractor's records must substantiate the claim for exemption by showing the disposition of all property so purchased. If any property is then used for a nonexempt purpose, the contractor must pay the tax on the property used.

(6) Gasoline. From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption in this state of (a) gasoline and other products taxed under chapter 36 of title 31 and (b) fuels used for the propulsion of airplanes.

(7) Purchase for manufacturing purposes. (i) From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption in this state of computer software, tangible personal property, electricity, natural gas, artificial gas, steam, refrigeration, and water, when the property or service is purchased for the purpose of being manufactured into a finished product for resale, and becomes an ingredient, component, or integral part of the manufactured, compounded, processed, assembled, or prepared product, or if the property or service is consumed in the process of manufacturing for resale computer software, tangible personal property, electricity, natural gas, artificial gas, steam, refrigeration, or water.

(ii) "Consumed" means destroyed, used up, or worn out to the degree or extent that the property cannot be repaired, reconditioned, or rendered fit for further manufacturing use.

(iii) "Consumed" includes mere obsolescence.

(iv) "Manufacturing" means and includes manufacturing, compounding, processing, assembling, preparing, or producing.

(v) "Process of manufacturing" means and includes all production operations performed in the producing or processing room, shop, or plant, insofar as the operations are a part of and connected with the manufacturing for resale of tangible personal property, electricity, natural gas, artificial gas, steam, refrigeration, or water and all production operations performed insofar as the operations are a part of and connected with the manufacturing for resale of computer software.

(vi) "Process of manufacturing" does not mean or include administration operations such as general office operations, accounting, collection, sales promotion, nor does it mean or include distribution operations which occur subsequent to production operations, such as handling, storing, selling, and transporting the manufactured products, even though the administration and distribution operations are performed by or in connection with a manufacturing business.

(8) State and political subdivisions. From the sale to, and from the storage, use, or other consumption by, this state, any city, town, district, or other political subdivision of this state. Every redevelopment agency created pursuant to chapter 31 of title 45 is deemed to be a subdivision of the municipality wherein it is located.

(9) Food products. (i) From the sale and the storage, use, or other consumption in this state, subsequent to March 31, 1948, of food products for human consumption.

(ii) "Food products" includes, except as otherwise provided in this subdivision, cereals and cereal products; milk and milk products, other than candy and confectionery, but including ice cream; oleomargarine; meat and meat products; fish and fish products; eggs and egg products; vegetables and vegetable products; fruit and fruit products, including pure fruit juices; spices, condiments, and salt; sugar and sugar products other than candy and confectionery; coffee and coffee substitutes; tea, cocoa, and cocoa products, other than candy and confectionery; and noncarbonated and noneffervescent bottled waters sold for human consumption.

(iii) "Food products" does not include spirituous, malt, or vinous liquors; soft drinks, sodas, or beverages that are ordinarily dispensed at bars or soda fountains or in connection therewith; medicines, tonics, vitamins, and preparations in liquid, powdered, granular, tablet, capsule, lozenge, or pill form, sold as dietary supplements or adjuncts, except when sold on the prescription of a physician; or mineral and carbonated bottled waters and ice.

(iv) "Food products" also does not include meals served on or off the premises of the retailer; or drinks or food furnished, prepared, or served for consumption at tables, chairs, or counters, or from trays, glasses, dishes, or other tableware provided by the retailer.

(v) The sale of meals and other food products ordinarily sold for immediate consumption on or off the premises of the retailer is a taxable sale even though the products are sold on a "take out" or "to go" order, and are actually packaged or wrapped and taken from the premises.

(10) Medicines and drugs. From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption in this state, subsequent to March 31, 1948, of "medicines" and "drugs" as defined in 5-19-1, sold on prescriptions and proprietary medicines, popularly called patent medicines, including, but not limited to, disposable or reusable devices, such as syringe infusers, ambulatory drug delivery pumps and supplies used with these items which are sold on prescription to individuals to be used by them to dispense or administer prescription drugs, and related ancillary dressings and supplies used to dispense or administer prescription drugs.

(11) Prosthetic and orthopedic appliances. From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption in this state, subsequent to March 31, 1948, of crutches, artificial limbs, dentures, spectacles and eyeglasses, artificial eyes, artificial hearing devices, and other prostheses or orthopedic appliances, designed and purchased to be worn on the person of the owner or user.

(12) Coffins, caskets, and burial garments. From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption in this state of coffins or caskets, and shrouds or other burial garments which are ordinarily sold by a funeral director as part of the business of funeral directing.

(13) Motor vehicles sold to nonresidents. (i) From the sale, subsequent to June 30, 1958, of a motor vehicle to a bona fide nonresident of this state who does not register the motor vehicle in this state, whether the sale or delivery of the motor vehicle is made in this state or at the place of residence of the nonresident; provided, that a motor vehicle sold to a bona fide nonresident whose state of residence does not allow a like exemption to its nonresidents is not exempt from the tax imposed under 44-18-20; provided, further, that in that event the bona fide nonresident pays a tax to Rhode Island on the sale at a rate equal to the rate that would be imposed in his or her state of residence not to exceed the rate that would have been imposed under 44-18-20. Notwithstanding any other provisions of law, a licensed motor vehicle dealer shall add and collect the tax required under this subdivision and remit the tax to the tax administrator under the provisions of chapters 18 and 19 of this title. Provided, further, that when a Rhode Island licensed motor vehicle dealer is required to add and collect the sales and use tax on the sale of a motor vehicle to a bona fide nonresident as provided in this section, the dealer in computing the tax takes into consideration the law of the state of the nonresident as it relates to the trade-in of motor vehicles.

(ii) The tax administrator, in addition to the provisions of 44-19-27 and 44-19-28, may require any licensed motor vehicle dealer to keep records of sales to bona fide nonresidents as the tax administrator deems reasonably necessary to substantiate the exemption provided in this subdivision, including the affidavit of a licensed motor vehicle dealer that the purchaser of the motor vehicle was the holder of, and had in his or her possession a valid out of state motor vehicle registration or a valid out of state driver's license.

(iii) Any nonresident who registers a motor vehicle in this state within ninety (90) days of the date of its sale to him or her is deemed to have purchased the motor vehicle for use, storage, or other consumption in this state, and is subject to, and liable for the use tax imposed under the provisions of 44-18-20.

(14) Sales in public buildings by blind people. From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption in all public buildings in this state of all products or wares by any person licensed under 40-9-11.1.

(15) Air and water pollution control facilities. From the sale, storage, use, or other consumption in this state of tangible personal property or supplies acquired for incorporation into or used and consumed in the operation of a facility, the primary purpose of which is to aid in the control of the pollution or contamination of the waters or air of the state, as defined in chapter 12 of title 46 and chapter 25 of title 23, respectively, and which has been certified as approved for that purpose by the director of environmental management. The director of environmental management may certify to a portion of the tangible personal property or supplies acquired for incorporation into those facilities or used and consumed in the operation of those facilities to the extent that that portion has as its primary purpose the control of the pollution or contamination of the waters or air of this state. As used in this subdivision, "facility" means any land, facility, device, building, machinery, or equipment.

(16) Camps. From the rental charged for living quarters, or sleeping or housekeeping accommodations at camps or retreat houses operated by religious, charitable, educational, or other organizations and associations mentioned in subdivision (5), or by privately owned and operated summer camps for children.

(17) Certain institutions. From the rental charged for living or sleeping quarters in an institution licensed by the state for the hospitalization, custodial, or nursing care of human beings.

(18) Educational institutions. From the rental charged by any educational institution for living quarters, or sleeping or housekeeping accommodations or other rooms or accommodations to any student or teacher necessitated by attendance at an educational institution. "Educational institution" as used in this section means an institution of learning not operated for profit which is empowered to confer diplomas, educational, literary, or academic degrees, which has a regular faculty, curriculum, and organized body of pupils or students in attendance throughout the usual school year, which keeps and furnishes to students and others records required and accepted for entrance to schools of secondary, collegiate, or graduate rank, no part of the net earnings of which inures to the benefit of any individual.

(19) Motor vehicle and adaptive equipment for persons with disabilities. From the sale of (i) special adaptations, (ii) the component parts of the special adaptations, or (iii) a specially adapted motor vehicle after July 1, 1998; provided, that the owner furnishes to the tax administrator an affidavit of a licensed physician to the effect that the specially adapted motor vehicle is necessary to transport a family member with a disability or where the vehicle has been specially adapted to meet the specific needs of the person with a disability. This exemption applies to not more than one motor vehicle owned and registered for personal, noncommercial use.

For the purpose of this subsection the term "special adaptations" includes, but is not limited to: wheelchair lifts; wheelchair carriers; wheelchair ramps; wheelchair securements; hand controls; steering devices; extensions, relocations, and crossovers of operator controls; power assisted controls; raised tops or dropped floors; raised entry doors; or alternative signaling devices to auditory signals.

For the purpose of this subdivision the exemption for a "specially adapted motor vehicle" means a use tax credit not to exceed the amount of use tax that would otherwise be due on the motor vehicle, exclusive of any adaptations. The use tax credit is equal to the cost of the special adaptations, including installation.

(20) Heating fuels. From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption in this state of every type of fuel used in the heating of homes and residential premises.

(21) Electricity and gas. From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption in this state of electricity and gas furnished for domestic use by occupants of residential premises.

(22) Manufacturing machinery and equipment. (i) From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption in this state of tools, dies, and molds, and machinery and equipment (including replacement parts), and related items to the extent used in an industrial plant in connection with the actual manufacture, conversion, or processing of tangible personal property, or to the extent used in connection with the actual manufacture, conversion or processing of computer software as that term is utilized in industry numbers 7371, 7372, and 7373 in the standard industrial classification manual prepared by the technical committee on industrial classification, office of statistical standards, executive office of the president, United States bureau of the budget, as revised from time to time, to be sold, or that machinery and equipment used in the furnishing of power to an industrial manufacturing plant. For the purposes of this subdivision, the term "industrial plant" means a factory at a fixed location primarily engaged in the manufacture, conversion, or processing of tangible personal property to be sold in the regular course of business;

(ii) Machinery and equipment and related items are not deemed to be used in connection with the actual manufacture, conversion, or processing of tangible personal property, or in connection with the actual manufacture, conversion or processing of computer software as that term is utilized in industry numbers 7371, 7372, and 7373 in the standard industrial classification manual prepared by the technical committee on industrial classification, office of statistical standards, executive office of the president, United States bureau of the budget, as revised from time to time, to be sold to the extent the property is used in administration or distribution operations;

(iii) Machinery and equipment and related items used in connection with the actual manufacture, conversion, or processing of any computer software or any tangible personal property which is not to be sold and which would be exempt under subdivision (7) or this subdivision if purchased from a vendor or machinery and equipment and related items used during any manufacturing, converting or processing function is exempt under this subdivision even if that operation, function, or purpose is not an integral or essential part of a continuous production flow or manufacturing process;

(iv) Where a portion of a group of portable or mobile machinery is used in connection with the actual manufacture, conversion, or processing of computer software or tangible personal property to be sold, as previously defined, that portion, if otherwise qualifying, is exempt under this subdivision even though the machinery in that group is used interchangeably and not otherwise identifiable as to use.

(23) Trade in value of motor vehicles. From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption in this state of so much of the purchase price paid for a new or used automobile as is allocated for a trade in allowance on the automobile of the buyer given in trade to the seller or of the proceeds applicable only to the motor vehicle as are received from an insurance claim as a result of a stolen or damaged motor vehicle, or of the proceeds applicable only to the automobile as are received from the manufacturer of automobiles for the repurchase of the automobile whether the repurchase was voluntary or not towards the purchase of a new or used automobile by the buyer; provided, that the proceeds from an insurance claim or repurchase is in lieu of the benefit prescribed in 44-18-21 for the total loss or destruction of the automobile; and provided, further, that the tax has not been reimbursed as part of the insurance claim or repurchase. For the purpose of this subdivision, the word "automobile" means a private passenger automobile not used for hire and does not refer to any other type of motor vehicle.

(24) Precious metal bullion. (i) From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption in this state of precious metal bullion, substantially equivalent to a transaction in securities or commodities.

(ii) For purposes of this subdivision, "precious metal bullion" means any elementary precious metal which has been put through a process of smelting or refining, including, but not limited to, gold, silver, platinum, rhodium, and chromium, and which is in a state or condition that its value depends upon its content and not upon its form.

(iii) The term does not include fabricated precious metal which has been processed or manufactured for some one or more specific and customary industrial, professional, or artistic uses.

(25) Sales by the bicentennial commission. From the sale and from the storage or use of any articles sold by the bicentennial commission.

(26) Commercial vessels. From sales made to a commercial ship, barge, or other vessel of fifty (50) tons burden or over, primarily engaged in interstate or foreign commerce, and from the repair, alteration, or conversion of the vessels, and from the sale of property purchased for the use of the vessels including provisions, supplies, and material for the maintenance and/or repair of the vessels.

(27) Commercial fishing vessels. From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption in this state of vessels and other water craft which are in excess of five (5) net tons and which are used exclusively for "commercial fishing", and the boats' nets, cables, tackle, and other fishing equipment appurtenant to or used in connection with the commercial fishing of the vessels. "Commercial fishing" means the taking or the attempting to take any fish, shellfish, crustacea, or bait species with the intent of disposing of them for profit or by sale, barter, trade, or in commercial channels. The term does not include subsistence fishing, i.e., the taking for personal use and not for sale or barter; or sport fishing; but shall include vessels with a Rhode Island party and charter boat license issued by the department of environmental management pursuant to 20-2-27.1 which meet the following criteria: (i) the operator must have a current U.S.C.G. license to carry passengers for hire; (ii) U.S.C.G. vessel documentation in the coastwide fishery trade; (iii) U.S.C.G. vessel documentation as to proof of Rhode Island home port status or a Rhode Island boat registration to prove Rhode Island home port status; (iv) the vessel must be used as a commercial passenger carrying fishing vessel to carry passengers for fishing. The vessel must be able to demonstrate that at least fifty percent (50%) of its annual gross income derives from charters or provides documentation of a minimum of one hundred (100) charter trips annually; (v) the vessel must have a valid Rhode Island party and charter boat license. The tax administrator shall implement the provisions of this subdivision by promulgating rules and regulations relating thereto.

(28) Clothing and footwear. From the sales of articles of clothing, including footwear, intended to be worn or carried on or about the human body. For the purposes of this section, "clothing or footwear" does not include special clothing or footwear primarily designed for athletic activity or protective use and which is not normally worn except when so used; and sales of wearing materials or any cloth made of natural or synthetic fibers and used for clothing purposes.

(29) Water for residential use. From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption in this state of water furnished for domestic use by occupants of residential premises.

(30) Bibles. From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption in the state of any canonized scriptures of any tax exempt non profit religious organization including, but not limited to, the Old Testament and the New Testament versions.

(31) Boats. (i) From the sale of a boat or vessel to a bona fide nonresident of this state who does not register the boat or vessel in this state, or document the boat or vessel with the United States government at a home port within the state, whether the sale or delivery of the boat or vessel is made in this state or elsewhere; provided, that the nonresident transports the boat within 30 days after delivery by the seller, outside the state for use thereafter solely outside the state.

(ii) The tax administrator, in addition to the provisions of 44-19-17 and 44-19-28, may require the seller of the boat or vessel to keep records of the sales to bona fide nonresidents as the tax administrator deems reasonably necessary to substantiate the exemption provided in this subdivision, including the affidavit of the seller that the buyer represented himself or herself to be a bona fide nonresident of this state and of the buyer that he or she is a nonresident of this state.

(32) Youth activities equipment. From the sale, storage, use, or other consumption in this state of items for not more than twenty dollars ($20.00) each by nonprofit Rhode Island eleemosynary organizations, for the purposes of youth activities which the organization is formed to sponsor and support; and by accredited elementary and secondary schools for the purposes of the schools or of organized activities of the enrolled students.

(33) Farm equipment. From the sale and from the storage or use of machinery and equipment used directly for commercial farming and agricultural production; including, but not limited to, tractors, ploughs, harrows, spreaders, seeders, milking machines, silage conveyors, balers, bulk milk storage tanks, trucks with farm plates, mowers, combines, irrigation equipment, greenhouses and greenhouse coverings, graders and packaging machines, tools and supplies and other farming equipment, including replacement parts, appurtenant to or used in connection with commercial farming and tools and supplies used in the repair and maintenance of farming equipment. "Commercial farming" means the production within this state of agricultural products, including, but not limited to, field or orchard crops, livestock, dairy, poultry, or their products thereof, where the production provides at least two thousand five hundred dollars ($2,500.00) in annual gross sales to the farm operator, whether an individual, a group, a partnership, or a corporation. This exemption applies even if the same equipment is used for ancillary uses, or is temporarily used for a non-farming or a non-agricultural purpose.

(34) Compressed air. From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption in the state of compressed air.

(35) Flags. From the sale and from the storage, consumption, or other use in this state of United States, Rhode Island or POW-MIA flags.

(36) Motor vehicle and adaptive equipment to certain veterans. From the sale of a motor vehicle and adaptive equipment to and for the use of a veteran with a service connected loss of or the loss of use of a leg, foot, hand, or arm, or any veteran who is a double amputee, whether service connected or not. The motor vehicle must be purchased by and especially equipped for use by the qualifying veteran. Certificate of exemption or refunds of taxes paid is granted under rules or regulations that the tax administrator may prescribe.

(37) Textbooks. From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption in this state of textbooks by an "educational institution" as defined in subdivision (18) and as well as any educational institution within the purview of 16-63-9(4) and used textbooks by any purveyor.

(38) Tangible personal property and supplies used in on-site hazardous waste recycling, reuse, or treatment. From the sale, storage, use, or other consumption in this state of tangible personal property or supplies used or consumed in the operation of equipment, the exclusive function of which is the recycling, reuse, or recovery of materials (other than precious metals, as defined in subdivision (24)(ii)) from the treatment of "hazardous wastes", as defined in 23-19.1-4, where the "hazardous wastes" are generated in Rhode Island solely by the same taxpayer and where the personal property is located at, in, or adjacent to a generating facility of the taxpayer in Rhode Island. The taxpayer shall procure an order from the director of the department of environmental management certifying that the equipment and/or supplies as used, or consumed, qualify for the exemption under this subdivision. If any information relating to secret processes or methods of manufacture, production, or treatment is disclosed to the department of environmental management only to procure an order, and is a "trade secret" as defined in 28-21-10(b), it is not open to public inspection or publicly disclosed unless disclosure is required under chapter 21 of title 28 or chapter 24.4 of title 23.

(39) Promotional and product literature of boat manufacturers. From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption of promotional and product literature of boat manufacturers shipped to points outside of Rhode Island which either (i) accompany the product which is sold, (ii) are shipped in bulk to out of state dealers for use in the sale of the product, or (iii) are mailed to customers at no charge.

(40) Food items paid for by food stamps. From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption in this state of eligible food items payment for which is properly made to the retailer in the form of U.S. government food stamps issued in accordance with the Food Stamp Act of 1977, 7 U.S.C. 2011 et seq., as amended.

(41) Transportation charges. From the sale or hiring of motor carriers as defined in 39-12-2(l) to haul goods, when the contract or hiring cost is charged by a motor freight tariff filed with the Rhode Island public utilities commission on the number of miles driven or by the number of hours spent on the job.

(42) Trade in value of boats. From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption in this state of so much of the purchase price paid for a new or used boat as is allocated for a trade in allowance on the boat of the buyer given in trade to the seller or of the proceeds applicable only to the boat as are received from an insurance claim as a result of a stolen or damaged boat, towards the purchase of a new or used boat by the buyer.

(43) Equipment used for research and development. From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption of equipment to the extent used for research and development purposes by a qualifying firm. For the purposes of this subdivision, "qualifying firm" means a business for which the use of research and development equipment is an integral part of its operation, and "equipment" means scientific equipment, computers, software, and related items.

(44) Coins. From the sale and from the other consumption in this state of coins having numismatic or investment value.

(45) Farm structure construction materials. Lumber, hardware and other materials used in the new construction of farm structures, including production facilities such as, but not limited to, farrowing sheds, free stall and stanchion barns, milking parlors, silos, poultry barns, laying houses, fruit and vegetable storages, rooting cellars, propagation rooms, greenhouses, packing rooms, machinery storage, seasonal farm worker housing, certified farm markets, bunker and trench silos, feed storage sheds, and any other structures used in connection with commercial farming.

(46) Telecommunications carrier access service. Carrier access service or telecommunications service when purchased by a telecommunications company from another telecommunications company to facilitate the provision of telecommunications service.

(47) Boats or vessels brought into the state exclusively for winter storage, maintenance, repair or sale. Notwithstanding the provisions of 44-18-10, 44-18-11, 44-18-20, the tax imposed by 44-18-20 is not applicable for the period commencing on the first day of October in any year to and including the 30th day of April next succeeding with respect to the use of any boat or vessel within this state exclusively for purposes of: (i) delivery of the vessel to a facility in this state for storage, including dry storage and storage in water by means of apparatus preventing ice damage to the hull, maintenance, or repair; (ii) the actual process of storage, maintenance, or repair of the boat or vessel; or (iii) storage for the purpose of selling the boat or vessel.

(48) Jewelry display product. From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption in this state of tangible personal property used to display any jewelry product; provided, that title to the jewelry display product is transferred by the jewelry manufacturer or seller and that the jewelry display product is shipped out of state for use solely outside the state and is not returned to the jewelry manufacturer or seller.

(49) Boats or vessels generally. Notwithstanding the provisions of this chapter, the tax imposed by 44-18-20 and 44-18-18 shall not apply with respect to the sale and to the storage, use, or other consumption in this state of any new or used boat. Provided, that the exemption provided for in this subdivision do not apply after October 1, 1993 unless prior to October 1, 1993 the federal 10% surcharge on luxury boats is repealed.

(50) Banks and Regulated investment companies interstate toll-free calls. [Effective January 1, 2000.] Notwithstanding the provisions of this chapter, the tax imposed by this chapter does not apply to the furnishing of interstate and international, toll-free terminating telecommunication service that is used directly and exclusively by or for the benefit of an eligible company as defined in this subdivision; provided, further, that an eligible company employs on average during the calendar year no less than five hundred (500) full-time equivalent employees as that term is defined in 42-64.5-2. For purposes of this section, an "eligible company" means a "regulated investment company" as that term is defined in the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, 26 U.S.C. 1 et seq., as amended, or a corporation to the extent the service is provided, directly or indirectly, to or on behalf of a regulated investment company, an employee benefit plan, a retirement plan or a pension plan or a state chartered bank.

(51) Mobile and manufactured homes generally. From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption in this state of mobile and/or manufactured homes as defined and subject to taxation pursuant to the provisions of chapter 44 of title 31.

(52) Alternative fuel. [Effective until January 1, 2003.] From the sale and from the storage, use, or other consumption in this state of alternative fuel, as defined pursuant to the Energy Policy Act of 1992 (P.L. 102-486, 301 (42 U.S.C. 13211)), from January 1, 1998 to December 31, 2002.

(53) Alternative fueled vehicles. [Effective until January 1, 2003.] From the sale and from the storage, use or other consumption in this state, from January 1, 1998 to December 31, 2002, of: (i) so much of the purchase price paid for a new dedicated alternative fueled vehicle as is allocated to the incremental cost of purchasing a new dedicated alternative fueled vehicle; or (ii) or so much of the purchase price paid for a converted gasoline or diesel-fueled motor vehicle as is allocated to the cost of conversion; and (iii) all costs associated with the construction of filling stations dispensing alternative fuel and motor vehicle electric recharging stations. "Alternative fuel" and "alternative fueled vehicle" are defined pursuant to the Energy Policy Act of 1992 (P.L. 102-486, 301 (42 U.S.C. 13211)). "Incremental costs" means the increase to the sale price of an alternative fueled vehicle, above the sale price of a comparable motor vehicle similar in all other respects but for the equipment necessary to render it an alternative fueled vehicle, which increased sale price is attributable to the vehicle being equipped to render it an alternative fueled vehicle.

(54) Manufacturing business reconstruction materials. (i) From the sale and from the storage, use or other consumption in this state of lumber, hardware, and other building materials used in the reconstruction of a manufacturing business facility which suffers a disaster, as defined in this subdivision, in this state. "Disaster" means any occurrence, natural or otherwise, which results in the destruction of sixty percent (60%) or more of an operating manufacturing business facility within this state. Provided, that "disaster" does not include any damage resulting from the willful act of the owner of the manufacturing business facility.

(ii) Manufacturing business facility includes, but is not limited to, the structures housing the production and administrative facilities.

(iii) In the event a manufacturer has more than one manufacturing site in this state, the sixty percent (60%) provision applies to the damages suffered at that one site.

(iv) To the extent that the cost of the reconstruction material are reimbursed by insurance, this exemption does not apply.

SECTION 49. Section 44-25-2 of the General Laws in Chapter 44-25 entitled "Real Estate Conveyance Tax" is hereby amended to read as follows:

44-25-2. Exemptions. -- (a) The tax imposed by this chapter does not apply to any instrument or writing given to secure a debt.

(b) The tax imposed by this chapter does not apply to any deed, instrument, or writing wherein the United States, the state of Rhode Island or its political subdivisions are designated the grantor.

(c) The tax imposed by this chapter does not apply to any deed, instrument, or writing which has or shall be executed, delivered, accepted, or presented for recording in furtherance of or pursuant to that certain master property conveyance contract dated December 29, 1982, and recorded in the land evidence records of the city of Providence on January 27, 1983 at 1:30 p.m. in book 1241 at page 849, and relating to the capital center project in the city of Providence.

(d) This act takes effect on May 8, 1984.

SECTION 50. Chapter 44-48 of the General Laws entitled "Tax Expenditure Pilot Project" is hereby repealed.

CHAPTER 44-48

TAX EXPENDITURE PILOT PROJECT

44-48-1. Tax expenditure reporting. -- On October 1, 1989, the state tax administrator shall deliver a pilot tax expenditure report to the governor, to the chairperson of the house finance committee and to the chairperson of the senate finance committee. The report shall include a listing of all tax preferences in effect under the tax laws of the state of Rhode Island as of June 30, 1989, and the revenue loss resulting from each tax preference for which sufficient data is available to make an estimate. The report shall also include a recommendation as to the nature and scope of a permanent tax expenditure act.

SECTION 51. The title of Chapter 44-49 of the General Laws is hereby amended to read as follows:

TAXATION OF MARIJUANA AND OTHER CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES

SECTION 52. Sections 44-49-2, 44-49-5 and 44-49-8 of the General Laws in Chapter 44-49 entitled "Taxation of Marijuana and Other Controlled Substances" are hereby amended to read as follows:

44-49-2. Definitions. -- (a) "Controlled substance" means any drug or substance, whether real or counterfeit, as defined in 21-28-1.02(6), that is held, possessed, transported, transferred, sold, or offered to be sold in violation of Rhode Island laws. "Controlled substance" does not include marijuana.

(b) "Dealer" means a person who in violation of Rhode Island law manufactures, produces, ships, transports, or imports into Rhode Island or in any manner acquires or possesses more than 421/2 grams of marijuana, or seven (7) or more grams of any controlled substance, or ten (10) or more dosage units of any controlled substance which is not sold by weight. A quantity of marijuana or other a controlled substance is measured by the weight of the substance whether pure or impure or dilute, or by dosage units when the substance is not sold by weight, in the dealer's possession. A quantity of a controlled substance is dilute if it consists of a detectable quantity of pure controlled substance and any excipients or fillers.

(c) "Marijuana" means any marijuana, whether real or counterfeit, as defined in 21-28-1.02(19), that is held, possessed, transported, transferred, sold, or offered to be sold in violation of Rhode Island laws.

44-49-5. Tax payment required for possession. -- No dealer may possess any marijuana or controlled substance upon which a tax is imposed under this chapter unless the tax has been paid on the marijuana or other a controlled substance as evidenced by a stamp or other official indicia.

44-49-8. Measurement. -- For the purpose of calculating this tax, a quantity of marijuana or other a controlled substance is measured by the weight of the substance whether pure or impure or dilute, or by dosage units when the substance is not sold by weight, in the dealer's possession. A quantity of a controlled substance is dilute if it consists of a detectable quantity of pure controlled substance and any excipients or fillers.

SECTION 53. Sections 44-50-3 and 44-50-4 of the General Laws in Chapter 44-50 entitled "Health Care Provider Assessment Act" are hereby amended to read as follows:

44-50-3. Imposition of assessment - Residential facilities for people who are mentally disabled. -- (a) For purposes of this section, a "residential facility" means a person or governmental unit licensed in accordance with chapter 24 of title 40.1 to establish, maintain, and operate a residential facility for people who are mentally disabled.

(b) An assessment is imposed upon the gross patient revenue received by every residential facility during the period beginning January 1, 1991, and ending December 31, 1991, at a rate of twenty-five percent (25%). Every residential facility shall pay the assessment for the period ending December 31, 1991, on or before April 30, 1992.

(c) An assessment is imposed upon the gross patient revenue received by every residential facility in each month beginning January 1, 1992 at a rate of twenty-five percent (25%). Every provider shall pay the monthly assessment no later than the twenty-fifth day of each month following the month of receipt of gross patient revenue; provided, that with respect to the assessments for the months of January, February and March, 1992, the provider shall pay the assessments due for those months on or before April 30, 1992. Notwithstanding any other provisions of this chapter, no penalty or interest is imposed for failure to make timely payments of the assessments due for the months of January, February and March, 1992; provided, that payment for those months are made within thirty (30) days notice from the administrator.

(d) A one hundred percent (100%) surcharge is imposed on the amount of the assessment provided for in subsection (c), to the extent that the assessment relates to the receipts of gross patient revenues received during the twelve (12) month period beginning January 1, 1992 and ending December 31, 1992. Every provider shall, on or before the twenty-fifth day of February 1993, file a return for that twelve (12) month period on a return provided by the tax administrator and together with that return shall pay the one hundred percent (100%) surcharge to the administrator.

(e) (1) The tax administrator is directed to insure that the assessment rate established in subsection (c) does not exceed the maximum rate of assessment that the laws of the United States and/or any rules, regulations, or standards issued under those laws, relating to health care provider assessments will allow without reduction in federal financial participation. In order to make that determination, the tax administrator shall apply the appropriate federal law and/or any rules, regulations, or standards relating to health care provider assessments.

(2) If, after applying the applicable federal law and/or rules, regulations, or standards, the tax administrator determines that the assessment rate established in subsection (c) exceeds the maximum rate of assessment that the federal law allows without reduction in federal financial participation, then the tax administrator is directed to lower the assessment rate to a rate which is equal to the maximum rate which the federal law allows without reduction in federal participation. The authority of the tax administrator to lower the assessment rate established in subsection (c) shall be limited solely to a determination that the assessment rate in subsection (c) exceeds that which is allowed without reduction in federal financial participation, under the laws of the United States and/or any rules, regulations, or standards issued under this law, relating to health care provider assessments.

(3) In order that the tax administrator may properly carry out the duties under this subsection, the director of the department of human services is directed to keep the tax administrator informed of any changes in federal law and/or any rules, regulations, or standards issued under this law that affect rates under health care provider assessments.

44-50-4. Returns. -- (a) Every provider shall on or before the twenty-fifth day of the month following the month of receipt of gross patient revenue make a return to the administrator. Provided, that the provider shall file a single return for the twelve month period ending December 31, 1991 on or before April 30, 1992.

(b) The administrator shall adopt rules, pursuant to this chapter, relative to the form of the return and the data which it must contain for the correct computation of gross patient revenue and the assessment upon such amount. All returns shall be signed by the provider or by its authorized representative, subject to the pains and penalties of perjury. If the return shows an overpayment of the assessment due, the administrator shall refund or credit the overpayment to the provider.

(c) For good cause, the administrator may extend the time within which a provider is required to file a return, and if the return is filed during the period of extension no penalty or late filing charge may be imposed for failure to file the return at the time required by this chapter, but the provider is liable for interest from the date on which the assessment would have been due without extension until the date of payment. Failure to file the return during the period for the extension voids the extension.

SECTION 54. Section 28-12-15 of the General Laws in Chapter 28-12 entitled "Minimum Wages" is hereby amended to read as follows:

28-12-15. Hindering enforcement -- Failure to carry out administrative requirements -- Any employer who hinders or delays the director of labor and training or his or her authorized representative in the performance of his or her duties in the enforcement of this chapter, or refuses to admit the director of labor and training or his or her authorized representative to any place of employment, or fails to make, keep, and preserve any records as required under the provisions of this chapter, or falsifies any record, or refuses to make any record accessible to the director of labor and training or his or her authorized representative upon demand, or refuses to furnish a sworn statement of the record or any other information required for the proper enforcement of this chapter to the director of labor and training or his or her authorized representative upon demand, or fails to post a summary of this chapter or a copy of any applicable regulation or order as required by section 28-12-22 11, shall be deemed in violation of this chapter and shall, upon conviction, be fined not less than one hundred dollars ($100) nor more than five hundred dollars ($500). Each day of violation shall constitute a separate offense.

SECTION 55. Section 28-30-4.1 of the General Laws in Chapter 28-30 entitled "Workers' Compensation Court" is hereby amended to read as follows:

28-30-4.1. Deputy administrator -- Appointment and term of office -- There shall be a deputy administrator of the workers' compensation court who shall be appointed by the administrator of the workers' compensation court with the approval of a majority of the judges. Beginning in January, 1990 and during the month of January in every twelfth (12th) year thereafter, the administrator, with the approval of a majority of the judges, shall appoint a deputy administrator of the court to serve for a period of twelve (12) years, commencing on the first day of February next following, and thereafter until his or her successor is appointed and qualified. Upon May 3, 1979, the administrator with the approval of a majority of the commissioners shall appoint a deputy administrator to serve until the first day of February in 1990 and thereafter until his or her successor is appointed and qualified.

SECTION 56. Sections 31-3-18, 31-3-32 and, 31-3-48 of the General Laws in Chapter 31-3 entitled "Registration of Vehicles" are hereby amended to read as follows:

31-3-18. Display of plates -- Penalties -- (a) Registration plates issued for a motor vehicle other than a motorcycle, trailer, transporter vehicle, in-transit vehicle, or a bailee engaged in a business as defined in section 31-1-17(f) or other than a motor vehicle owned by a duly authorized dealer in motor vehicles and which is used in the dealer's business shall be attached thereto one in the front and the other in the rear. The registration plate issued for a motorcycle, trailer, bailee, or a dealer's motor vehicle as herein defined shall be attached to the rear thereof.

(b) Every registration plate shall at all times be securely fastened in a horizontal position to the vehicle for which it is issued so as to prevent the plate from swinging at a height of not less than twelve inches (12") from the ground, measuring from the bottom of the plate; in a place and position to be clearly visible and shall be maintained free from foreign materials and in a condition to be clearly legible.

(c) Penalties.. - Any person who shall violate the provisions of this section shall be guilty of a violation and be subject to a fine of not more than fifty dollars ($50.00).

(d) All vehicles registered as passenger, commercial, trailer, motorcycle, suburban, farm, combination, taxi, radio operator, camper, public, racer tow, jitney and antique must have displayed thereon the registration plate(s) commonly known as the general issuance "wave plate" by October 1, 1997. This subsection does not apply to those registrants in possession of an alternative design plate as described in section 31-3-60 or any other specially authorized plate described in this chapter.

31-3-32. Expiration of registration -- Every vehicle registration under chapters 3 -- 9, inclusive, of this title and every registration card and registration plate issued hereunder shall expire at midnight on the thirty-first (31st) day of March of each year, except that the director of the department of administration, division of motor vehicles shall implement a staggered registration system at the earliest practical date subsequent to April 1, 1980 and a staggered distribution system for fully reflective plates required to be on all vehicles pursuant to section 31-3-10 which shall be completed by June 30, 1997. Implementation of the staggered registration system and distribution system shall be by rules and regulations promulgated by the director of administration, division of motor vehicles. A registration fee which is determined in accordance with section 31-6-1(2) shall not expire on March 31, 1990, but shall be extended until April 30, 1990. A fee for the initial issuance of fully reflective plates and each reissuance thereafter shall be charged in accordance with section 31-6-1(23). Provided, however, that the requirements for the reissuance of fully reflective plates shall apply only to those standard plates described in section 31-3-11 and not to plates authorized by any other section of the general or public laws.

31-3-48. Plates for recipients of Purple Heart -- (a) The registrar of motor vehicles is hereby empowered to make available to recipients of the Purple Heart Medal a special motor vehicle registration plate indicating the owner as a recipient of the Purple Heart. The applicant shall be required to pay a registration fee and a transfer charge of five dollars ($5.00) for the plate.

(b) The plate shall contain the words "combat wounded" across the top of the plate and shall have an insignia for the Purple Heart and be followed by the letters P H , followed by a numeral or numerals. The Purple Heart insignia may be reproduced on the plate in the color purple.

(c) Any person issued a plate under this section prior to July 31, 1989 shall be entitled to a reimbursement in the amount of seven dollars ($7.00) upon application therefor. Upon the death of the holder of any purple heart plates, the plates shall be transferred to his or her surviving spouse for the spouse's lifetime until he or she remarries.

SECTION 57. Sections 31-3-55 and 31-3-66 of the General Laws in Chapter 31-3 entitled "Registration of Vehicles" are hereby repealed.

31-3-55. U.R.I. centennial plates -- (a) The registrar of motor vehicles is hereby empowered and authorized to make available to every owner of a private passenger motor vehicle special registration plates recognizing the centennial of the university of Rhode Island. The special plates shall display upon them the same registration number assigned to the vehicle for which it was issued, and shall be used in place of and in the same manner as the registration plates issued to the vehicle for the period January 1, 1995 through December 31, 1997 and no longer. The original registration plates for the vehicle shall be removed from the vehicle and the registration certificate for the plates shall be carried in the vehicle, in accordance with section 31-3-9. The registration certificate shall be in effect for the special U.R.I. centennial plates.

(b) The color and design of the special plates shall be determined by the president of the university of Rhode Island with the concurrence of the registrar of motor vehicles. Application for the special plates shall be made with the university of Rhode Island Alumni Association. A service charge in the amount of forty dollars ($40.00) shall be required upon application, with twenty dollars ($20.00) of the service charge being retained by the Alumni Association and twenty dollars ($20.00) being allocated to the registry of motor vehicles for its costs in manufacturing and distributing the special plates. However, if an applicant previously had been issued a URI Centennial plate, the above fees are waived.

(c) Upon the expiration of the special plates, the applicant may retain them in the applicant's own keeping provided the applicant does not display the plate upon the motor vehicle or any other form of transportation.

31-3-66. Roger Williams University anniversary plates -- (a) The registrar of motor vehicles is hereby empowered and authorized to make available to every owner of a private passenger motor vehicle special registration plates recognizing the 25th Anniversary of the Roger Williams University Bristol Campus, and to promulgate appropriate rules and regulations necessary to carry out the purposes of this section. The special plates shall display upon them the same registration number assigned to the vehicle for which it was issued and shall be used in place of and in the same manner as the registration plates issued to the vehicle for the period January 1, 1995 through December 31, 1997 and no longer. The original registration plates for the vehicle shall be removed from the vehicle and the registration certificate for the plates shall be carried in the vehicle in accordance with section 31-3-9. The registration certificate shall be in effect for the special Roger Williams University plates. The color and design of the special plates shall be determined by the president of Roger Williams University with the concurrence of the registrar of motor vehicles. Application for the special plates shall be made with the Roger Williams University Alumni Association. A service charge in the amount of forty dollars ($40.00) shall be required upon application, with twenty dollars ($20.00) of the service charge being retained by the Alumni Association and twenty dollars ($20.00) being allocated to the registry of motor vehicles for its costs in manufacturing and distributing the special plates.

(b) Upon the expiration of the above described special plates, the applicant may retain them in the applicant's own keeping provided the applicant does not display the plate upon the motor vehicle or any other form of transportation.

(c) The administrator of the registry of motor vehicles is hereby authorized to promulgate rules and regulations to carry out the purposes of this section.

SECTION 58. Sections 31-3.1-12 and 31-3.1-38 of the General Laws in Chapter 31-3.1 entitled "Certificates of Title and Security Interests" are hereby amended to read as follows:

31-3.1-12. Transfer -- (a) If the owner transfers his or her interest in a vehicle, other than by the creation of a security interest, he or she shall, at the time of the delivery of the vehicle, execute an assignment and warranty of title to the transferee in the space provided therefor on the certificate or as the registry of motor vehicles prescribes, and cause the certificate and assignment to be mailed or delivered to the transferee or to the registry.

(b) Except as provided in section 31-3.1-13, the transferee shall, promptly after delivery to him or her of the vehicle, execute the application for a new certificate of title in the space provided therefor on the certificate or as the registry prescribes, and cause the certificate and application to be mailed or delivered to the registry.

(c) Upon request of the owner or transferee, a lienholder in possession of the certificate of title shall, unless the transfer was a breach of his or her security agreement, either deliver the certificate to the transferee for delivery to the registry or upon receipt from the transferee of the owner's assignment, the transferee's application for a new certificate, the registration card, license plates and the required fee of twenty-five dollars ($25.00), mail or deliver them to the registry. The delivery of the certificate does not affect the rights of the lienholder under his or her security agreement.

(d) If a security interest is reserved or created at the time of the transfer, the certificate of title shall be retained by or delivered to the person who becomes the lienholder, and the parties shall comply with the provisions of section 31-3.1-20.

(e) Except as provided in section 31-3.1-13 and as between the parties, a transfer by an owner is not effective until the provisions of this section and section 31-3.1-15, have been complied with; however, an owner who has delivered possession of the vehicle to the transferee and has complied with the provisions of this section and section 31-3.1-15, requiring action by him or her, is not liable as owner for any damages thereafter resulting from operation of the vehicle.

(f) The registrar of motor vehicles shall, within sixty (60) days of July 12, 1990, prescribe and/or approve a power-of-attorney form which complies with section 408(d)(1)(C) of the Motor Vehicle Information and Cost Savings Act, 15 U.S.C. section 1988(d)(1), as amended, and any regulations promulgated pursuant thereto, which form may be used in connection with transfers of title under this section to the full extent permitted by federal law.

31-3.1-38. Effective dates -- Applicability -- This chapter shall take effect on July 1, 1972 and shall apply to all model vehicles designated as 1973 models and all subsequent model year vehicles, and provided further that all vehicles designated as model years prior to 1973 shall be excluded from the provisions hereof; and provided further, however, that no title certificate shall be required once a vehicle is ten (10) years old.

SECTION 59. Section 31-3.2-2 of the General Laws in Chapter 31-3.2 entitled "Snowmobiles and Recreational Vehicles" is hereby amended to read as follows:

31-3.2-2. Registration -- (a) General requirements.. - Except as hereinafter provided, no person shall, after October 30, 1971, operate any snowmobile or recreational vehicle within the state unless the snowmobile or recreational vehicle has been registered in accordance with this chapter. Any operator of any snowmobile or recreational vehicle not registered in accordance with this chapter shall be deemed guilty of a civil violation and be subject to a fine of one hundred dollars ($100) for each offense.

(b) Application -- Issuance -- Reports.. - Application for registration shall be made to the director in such form as the director shall prescribe, and shall state the name and address of every owner of the snowmobile or recreational vehicle and be signed by at least one owner. Upon receipt of the application and the appropriate fee as hereinafter provided, the snowmobile or recreational vehicle shall be registered and a reflectorized identification number assigned which shall be affixed to the snowmobile or recreational vehicle in such manner as the director shall prescribe.

(c) Fees for registration.. - (1) The fee for registration of each snowmobile or recreational vehicle, other than those registered by a dealer or manufacturer pursuant to subsection (c)(1) or (c)(2) shall be as follows: ten dollars ($10.00) for one year and one dollar ($1.00) for a duplicate or transfer.

(2) The total registration fee for all snowmobiles or recreational vehicles owned by a dealer and operated for demonstration or testing purposes shall be twenty-five dollars ($25.00) per year.

(3) The total registration fee for all snowmobiles or recreational vehicles owned by a manufacturer and operated for research, testing, experimentation, or demonstration purposes shall be one hundred dollars ($100) per year. Dealer and manufacturer registrations are not transferable.

(4) In addition to the registration fees enumerated in subdivisions (1) -- (3) of this subsection, an annual registration fee of ten dollars ($10.00) for residents and twenty dollars ($20.00) for nonresidents on all off-road facilities established by the department of the environment for such purposes. No person shall operate any recreational vehicles on off-road facilities which has not been registered as required by this subdivision.

(d) Renewal.. - Every owner of a snowmobile or recreational vehicle shall renew his or her registration in such manner as the director shall prescribe, upon payment of the same registration fees provided in subsection (c).

(e) Snowmobiles or recreational vehicles owned by state or political subdivision.. - A registration number shall be issued without the payment of a fee for snowmobiles or recreational vehicles owned by the state of Rhode Island or a political subdivision thereof upon application therefor.

(f) Exemptions.. - No registration hereunder shall be required for the following described snowmobiles or recreational vehicles:

(1) Snowmobiles or recreational vehicles owned and used by the United States, another state, or a political subdivision thereof.

(g) The commissioner of environmental management may issue special permits to out of state snowmobiles or recreational vehicles from a state or country where registration is not required to operate in Rhode Island for limited periods of time not to exceed thirty (30) days in connection with organized group outings, trail rides, races, rallies, and other promotional events.

SECTION 60. Section 31-5-2.1 of the General Laws in Chapter 31-5 entitled "Dealers', Manufacturers' and Rental Licenses" is hereby amended to read as follows:

31-5-2.1. Motor Vehicle Dealers License and Hearing Board -- (a) A board composed of a total of five (5) members, two (2) of which shall be licensed automobile dealers, one new car Rhode Island licensed automobile dealer, and one used car Rhode Island licensed automobile dealer, each to serve a three (3) year term; one active Rhode Island State Police officer appointed by the Superintendent of Rhode Island State Police and shall serve a five (5) year term; one active employee of the Rhode Island Department of Transportation appointed by the Director of Transportation shall serve a five (5) year term, and one licensed Rhode Island attorney in good standing shall serve a seven (7) year term. The two (2) automobile dealers and attorney shall be appointed by the Governor. The board shall be known as the Motor Vehicle Dealers License and Hearing Board.

(b) The Board shall issue the license provided for in sections 31-5-5 -- 31-5-9, and section 31-5-34, inclusive. The Board shall have supervision over the license with respect to all of the provisions of sections 31-5-1 -- 31-5-39, inclusive, and shall have the power to promulgate rules and regulations to fulfill the purposes of this chapter and to protect the public interest. The Board shall have the power to set, from time to time, the maximum number of plates to be issued to each dealer after due investigation and after considering the number of plates reasonably required for the operation of the dealers business and shall have the power to declare and define what constitutes a licensee. The provisions of sections 31-5-1 -- 31-5-20, inclusive, and sections 31-5-33 -- 31-5-39, inclusive, shall be administered by the Board or by any of its duly authorized representatives.

(c) The Board shall have all of the same powers, duties, and responsibilities of the previous Rhode Island Dealers Hearing Board established by the Director of the Department of Transportation.

(d) The Board shall constitute an agency and shall follow the Administrative Procedure Act and its decisions are appealable to the Director of the Rhode Island Department of Transportation. The Director's decision shall be appealable to the Rhode Island Superior Court.

(e) A member of the Board may be removed for cause by the Director of the Rhode Island Department of Transportation after a hearing conducted by the Director of the Rhode Island Department of Transportation determining that cause exists and a written decision explaining the reason for the removal. The Director's decision of said removal shall be appealable to the Rhode Island Superior Court.

(f) The members of the Rhode Island Dealers Hearing Board serving as of August 31, 1993 shall serve out their respective terms of office upon the passage of this section and will remain on the Motor Vehicle Dealers License and Hearing Board until their respective terms expire and a subsequent appointment is made by the Governor, or respective appointing authority. If a vacancy occurs on the Board for any reason, an individual shall be appointed according to the procedures set forth in subsection (a) of this section and said individual will serve out the remainder of the unexpired term of the vacancy.

(g) The Director of Transportation shall provide suitable office space for said Board and its personnel to suit the public convenience in all proper way to facilitate the work of the Board in carrying out the provisions of sections 31-5-1 -- 31-5-20, inclusive, and sections 31-5-33 to 31-5-39, inclusive.

(h) Members of the board shall serve without salary, however, members of said Board shall be reimbursed for their actual expenses necessarily incurred in the performance of their duties. The Rhode Island Department of Transportation shall provide funds to pay said expenses. Also, the Rhode Island Department of Transportation shall provide legal counsel to the Board to defend and enforce the Board's decision and provide legal advice on any matters that may come before the Board.

(i) If any section, phrase, clause, sentence or part of this section is declared unconstitutional or otherwise invalid, such invalidity will not effect remaining portions of this section.

SECTION 61. Sections 31-5.2-1 and 31-5.2-7.1 of the General Laws in Chapter 31-5.2 entitled "Consumer Enforcement of Motor Vehicle Warranties" are hereby amended to read as follows:

31-5.2-1. Definitions -- The following words and phrases which are used in this chapter shall, for the purposes of this chapter, have the following meanings:

(1) "Consumer" means a buyer, other than for purposes of resale, of a motor vehicle, any person to whom that motor vehicle is transferred for the same purposes during the duration of any express or implied warranty applicable to that motor vehicle, and any other person entitled by the terms of that warranty to enforce its obligations.

(2) "Dealer" means any person engaged in the business of selling, offering to sell, soliciting, or advertising the sale of new motor vehicles.

(3) "Lease price" means the aggregate of:

(i) Lessor's actual purchase costs.

(ii) Collateral charges, if applicable.

(iii) Any fee paid to another to obtain the lease.

(iv) Any insurance or other costs expended by the lessor for the benefit of the lessee.

(v) An amount equal to state and local sales taxes not otherwise included as collateral charges, paid by the lessor when the vehicle was initially purchased.

(vi) An amount equal to five percent (5%) of the lessor's actual purchase costs.

(4) "Lessee" means any consumer who leases a motor vehicle for one year or more pursuant to a written lease agreement which provides that the lessee is responsible for repairs to such motor vehicle or any consumer who leases a motor vehicle pursuant to a lease-purchase agreement.

(5) "Lessee cost" means the aggregate deposit and rental payments previously paid to the lessor for the leased vehicle.

(6) "Lessor" means a person who holds title to a motor vehicle leased to a lessee under a written lease agreement or who holds the lessor's rights under such agreement.

(7) "Manufacturer" means any person, partnership, firm, association, corporation, or trust, resident or nonresident, which is engaged in the business of manufacturing or assembling new motor vehicles, or which is engaged in the business of importing new motor vehicles which are manufactured or assembled outside of the United States.

(8) "Motor vehicle" or "vehicle" means an automobile, truck, motorcycle, or van having a registered gross vehicle weight of less than ten thousand pounds (10,000 lbs.), sold, leased, or replaced by a dealer or manufacturer after May 11, 1984, except that it shall not include a motorized camper as defined in section 31-1-3(q).

(9) "Nonconformity" means any specific or generic defect or malfunction, or any concurrent combination of such defects or malfunctions, that substantially impairs the use, market value, or safety of a motor vehicle.

(10) "Term of protection" means one year or fifteen thousand (15,000) miles of use from the date of original delivery of a new motor vehicle to the consumer, whichever comes first; or, in the case of a replacement vehicle provided by a manufacturer to a consumer under this chapter, one year or fifteen thousand (15,000) miles from the date of delivery to the consumer of that replacement vehicle, whichever comes first.

31-5.2-7.1. Procedure -- (a) In addition to any settlement procedure provided for in section 31-5.2-7, the consumers' council shall provide an independent arbitration procedure for the settlement of disputes between consumers or lessees and manufacturers concerning motor vehicles which do not conform to all applicable express or implied warranties. The director of the consumers' council shall establish one or more automobile dispute settlement panels which shall consist of three (3) members appointed by the director, only one of whom shall be directly involved in the manufacture, distribution, sale, lease or service of any automobile product. Members shall be persons interested in consumer disputes and shall serve without compensation at the discretion of the director.

(b) An owner or lessee of any motor vehicle purchased or leased at any time on and after January 1, 1991 which fails to conform to the applicable warranties, express or implied warranties may either initiate a request for arbitration by the consumers' council or take part in the settlement procedure set forth in section 31-5.2-7 if in existence. The consumer or lessee shall set forth, on a complaint form prescribed by the director, any information he or she deems relevant to the resolution of the dispute and shall file the complaint with a nonrefundable filing fee of twenty dollars ($20.00). The director shall decide if the complaint is eligible under chapter 5.2 of this title. Upon acceptance of the complaint, the director shall notify the manufacturer of the filing of a request for arbitration and shall obtain from the manufacturer, in writing on a form prescribed by the director, any information the manufacturer deems relevant to the resolution of the dispute. The manufacturer shall return the form, along with a non-refundable fifty dollar ($50.00) filing fee, within twenty (20) days of receipt. The director shall then refer the matter to a panel created pursuant to subsection (a) above.

(c) The panel shall investigate, gather and organize all information necessary for a fair and timely decision in each dispute. The director may issue subpoenas on behalf of any arbitration panel to compel the attendance of witnesses and the production of documents, papers, and records relevant to the dispute.

(d) At all arbitration proceedings the parties may present oral or written testimony, present witnesses and evidence relevant to the dispute, cross examine witnesses, and be represented by counsel.

(e) The consumers' council may forward a copy of all written testimony, including all documentary evidence, to an independent technical expert, who shall review such material and be able to advise and consult with, the arbitration panel. An expert shall sit as a non-voting member of an arbitration panel whenever oral testimony is presented.

(f) The panel shall grant the relief specified in section 31-5.2-3 of this chapter and any other relief available under the applicable warranties or the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Federal Trade Commission Improvement Act, 88 Stat. 2183 (1975), 15 USC 2301 et seq. as in effect on October 1, 1982, to the consumer or lessee if a reasonable number of attempts have been undertaken to correct one or more nonconformities that substantially impair the motor vehicle. The panel shall dismiss the dispute if the panel finds, after considering all the evidence presented, that the consumer or lessee is not entitled to relief under this chapter.

(g) (1) The panel shall, as expeditiously as possible, but not later than ninety (90) days from the date the director deems the dispute eligible for arbitration, render a fair decision based on the information gathered and disclose its findings and the reasons therefor to the parties involved. The consumer or lessee shall accept or reject the decision within five (5) days of its filing.

(2) If the decision is favorable to the consumer or lessee, the manufacturer must within thirty (30) days after the rendering of the decision, comply with the terms of the decision if the consumer or lessee elects to accept the decision. The consumers' council shall contact the consumer or lessee, within ten (10) working days after the date for performance, to determine whether performance has occurred.

(h) The director shall maintain such records of each dispute as deemed necessary, including an index of disputes by brand name and model. The director shall, at intervals of no more than six (6) months, compile and maintain statistics indicating the record of manufacturer compliance with arbitration decisions and the number of refunds or replacement awarded. The summary shall be a public record.

(i) The consumers' council automobile dispute settlement procedure shall be prominently posted in the place of business of each new car dealer or lessor licensed by the department of transportation to engage in the sale or lease of such manufacturer's new motor vehicles. The display of such public notice shall be a condition of licensure under the general laws. The director shall determine the size, type face, form and wording of the sign required by this section, which shall include the telephone number and the address to which requests for the consumers' council's arbitration services may be sent.

(j) The director shall adopt regulations, in accordance with the provisions of the general laws, within ninety (90) days after [July 10, 1990], to carry out the purposes of this section. Written copies of the regulations and appropriate arbitration hearing procedures shall be provided to any person upon request.

SECTION 62. Sections 31-10-5, 31-10-26.1, 31-10-27, 31-10-35, 31-10-39 and 31-10-44 of the General Laws in Chapter 31-10 entitled "Operators' and Chauffeurs' Licenses" are hereby amended to read as follows:

31-10-5. Special restrictions for drivers for compensation -- (a) No person who is under the age of twenty-one (21) years shall drive any school bus transporting school children or any motor vehicle when in use for the transportation of persons or property for compensation nor in either event until he or she has been licensed as a chauffeur for either purpose and the license so indicates. The registry shall not issue a chauffeur's license for either purpose unless the applicant has had at least one year of driving experience prior thereto and has filed with the registry one or more certificates signed by a total of at least three (3) responsible people to whom he or she is well known certifying to the applicant's good character and habits and the registrar is fully satisfied as to the applicant's competency and fitness to be so employed.

(b) Any person who has not attained the age of twenty-one (21) years, but who has been legally operating a school bus prior to June 27, 1986, shall be exempt from the age provision contained herein.

(c) (b) In addition to the above-stated requirements, any person attempting to obtain a chauffeur's license to drive a school bus transporting school children shall, prior to being certified:

(1) Successfully complete a ten (10) hour school bus driver training course conducted by the department of transportation and file a certificate of successful completion with the registry of motor vehicles. The curriculum of that course and the accreditation of courses offered shall be pursuant to rules and regulations promulgated by the registry of motor vehicles.

(2) Pass a written examination prepared and given by the department of transportation.

(3) Pass a driving test in a school bus of a like type which that person will be employed to drive. The test will be prepared and given by the department of transportation.

(c) Prior to issuing a certificate to any person who intends to drive a school bus, the registry shall conduct a search of that person's motor vehicle record. Any violation of any safety regulation or conviction of any motor vehicle law in this or any other state shall be grounds for refusing to issue a certificate.

31-10-26.1. Anatomical gifts by drivers -- (a) The registry shall cause to be sent to each person applying for or renewing a license, as provided for in section 31-10-26, a document containing a summary description and explanation of the Anatomical Gift Act, as provided for in chapter 18.6 of title 23, and a donor card suitable for use by a person wishing to donate tissue or organs pursuant to the applicable provisions of chapter 18.6 of title 23. The donor card shall include the definition of qualified donee, as specified in chapter 18.6 of title 23.

(b) The registry may, on behalf of the state accept and deposit with the general treasurer any grant, gift, or contribution made to assist in meeting the cost of carrying out the purposes of this section and to expend the grant, gift, or contribution for those purposes.

(c) The registry may make and sign any agreements and may do and perform any and all acts which may be necessary or desirable to carry out the purposes of this section.

(d) The registry shall issue special licenses upon request of a licensee which conform to the provisions of the Rhode Island Anatomical Gift Act in chapter 18.6 of title 23.

(e) Neither the registrar nor any employee of the state shall be liable in any suit for damages as a result of his or her acts or omissions or for any action under the provisions of this section.

(f) The registry shall cause to be posted in all of its customer service locations a sign denoting that organ donor cards are available, from a registry customer service representative, upon request from a person applying for or renewing a license. Organ donor cards shall be placed in areas visible to customers.

(g) When obtaining or renewing the driver's license, Rhode Island residents, who request an organ donor card, may be asked this question: Do you wish to have the organ donor designation on your driver's license? If the driver says "yes", that information will be designated on the license. Effective July 1, 2000, wWhen obtaining or renewing the driver's license, Rhode Island residents, who request an organ donor card, will be asked this question: Do you wish to have the organ donor designation printed on your driver's license? If the driver says "yes", that information will be designated on the license and the information made a permanent part of the driver's record with the Rhode Island registry of motor vehicles. Only a "yes" or affirmative response will be noted. This information will be made available to all law enforcement organizations twenty-four (24) hours a day and will be used to notify next of kin of their family member's affirmative response to organ donation.

31-10-27. License to be carried and exhibited on demand -- (a) Every licensee shall have his or her operator's or chauffeur's license in his or her immediate possession at all times when operating a motor vehicle and shall display the license upon the demand of any peace office or inspector of the registry and shall, upon request by any proper officer, write his or her name in the presence of that officer for the purpose of being identified. However, no person charged with violating this section shall be convicted if he or she produces in court or the office of the arresting officer an operator's or chauffeur's license theretofore issued to him or her and valid at the time of his or her arrest.

(b) Every school bus operator shall display in a prominent place in the bus he or she is operating both a valid chauffeur's license or a reasonable facsimile thereof, and a valid school bus driver's certificate, both of which have been issued by this state under the provisions of this title. A display case shall be provided to display these documents by the registered owner no later than September 1, 1986.

31-10-35. Commercial drivers' school license required -- On or after July 1, 1963, nNo person, unless licensed under the provisions of this chapter, shall engage in the business of giving instruction for compensation in the driving of motor vehicles and motorcycles; provided, however, that no license shall be required of a person who is engaged in teaching in a regularly recognized secondary school or college driver training program, which is approved by the registry of motor vehicles.

31-10-39. Instructor's license required -- On and after July 1, 1963, nNo person, unless licensed by the registrar, shall be employed by any commercial drivers' school licensee to give instruction to drive a motor vehicle or motorcycle. An application for an instructor's license shall contain the name and address of the applicant, the name and address of the school employing the applicant, and such other pertinent information as may be required by the registrar to safeguard the public interest. Every application shall be verified by the oath or affirmation of the applicant and shall be accompanied by the fee required by law.

31-10-44. Medical advisory board -- (a) There shall be established within the registry a medical advisory board to function solely as an advisory panel to the registrar of motor vehicles on the subjects of physical and mental fitness standards for licensure to operate a motor vehicle and eligibility standards for disability parking privileges. When any person's eligibility or continuing eligibility for a license is questioned on the grounds of physical or mental fitness, the registrar may consult with relevant specialist members of the medical advisory board in determining that person's qualifications to operate a motor vehicle.

The registrar may also consult with relevant specialist members of the medical advisory board in making determinations of eligibility for disability parking privileges.

(b) In accordance with chapter 35 of title 42, on or before February 1, 1999, the registrar shall establish by regulations functional standards for determining physical and mental fitness for motor vehicle licensure. The promulgated standards will be based on current medical knowledge and objective data regarding fitness to safely operate motor vehicles, and will conform to the requirements of the Americans With Disabilities Acts and chapter 87 of title 42. In developing those functional standards the registrar shall consult with knowledgeable health and rehabilitation professionals including the Medical Society of Rhode Island and the medical advisory board.

(c) [Deleted by P.L. 1998, ch. 89, section 1.]

(d) [Deleted by P.L. 1998, ch. 89, section 1.]

(e) The medical board shall consist of a physician in general practice, a neurologist, a psychiatrist, an optometrist, and an orthopedic physician who shall be appointed by the governor, and a physician from the Rhode Island department of health designated by the director of health who shall serve ex officio, and two (2) members of the general public approved by the governor, one of whom shall be representative of the elderly, and one of whom shall be representative of the people who are disabled. These members shall be appointed for a period of three (3) years.

(f) Any physician or optometrist who diagnoses a physical or mental condition which in the physician's or optometrist's judgment will significantly impair the person's ability to operate safely a motor vehicle may voluntarily report the person's name and other information relevant to the condition to the medical advisory board within the registry of motor vehicles.

(g) Any physician or optometrist reporting in good faith and exercising due care shall have immunity from any liability, civil or criminal, that otherwise might result by reason of his or her actions pursuant to this section. No cause of action may be brought against any physician or optometrist for not making a report pursuant to this section.

(h) For the purposes of this section, a "physician" shall be any person practicing medicine requiring a license pursuant to chapter 37 of title 5, and an "optometrist" is any person as defined in section 5-35-1.

(i) Members of the medical board shall receive, as compensation for their services thereon, fifty dollars ($50.00) per meeting, except for the ex officio members; provided, however, that no member shall receive more than seven hundred dollars ($700) per annum pursuant to this section. They shall meet at the request of the registrar at a time convenient to them.

SECTION 63. Section 31-10.3-17 of the General Laws in Chapter 31-10.3 entitled "Rhode Island Uniform Commercial Driver's License Act" is hereby repealed in its entirety:

31-10.3-17. Validity of current licenses -- The chauffeur's license of any person holding a currently valid chauffeur's license that requires CDL certification shall remain valid until March 31, 1992, unless sooner withdrawn by the division of motor vehicles.

SECTION 64. Section 31-12-6 of the General Laws in Chapter 31-12 entitled "Scope of Application of Traffic Regulations" is hereby amended to read as follows:

31-12-6. Emergency vehicles -- Times when entitled to special privileges -- (a) The driver of an authorized emergency vehicle, when responding to an emergency call or when in the pursuit of an alleged violator of the law or when responding to but not upon returning from a fire alarm, may exercise the privileges set forth in section 31-12-7, but subject to the conditions stated herein and in sections 31-12-8 and 31-12-9.

(b) Upon establishment of the law enforcement agency accreditation council, the council shall adopt uniform rules and regulations to govern high speed pursuits in the state in accordance with the standards established by the national law enforcement accreditation agency. Until such rules are adopted, all police departments within the state shall, within sixty (60) days of July 6, 1990, submit to the department of the attorney general a copy of their high speed pursuit policies, which shall be available to the public.

SECTION 65. Section 31-18-21 of the General Laws in Chapter 31-18 entitled "Pedestrians" is hereby amended to read as follows:

31-18-21. Pedestrians and bike facilities -- Except in the cases of limited access roads, and/or roads of less than 23' (feet) in width, and/or roads already past thirty percent (30%) design stage as of July 1, 1997, the director of the department of transportation is hereby authorized and directed to provide for the accommodation of bicycle and pedestrian traffic in the planning, design, construction and reconstruction, and to consider such in the resurfacing and striping of any project undertaken by the department, unless the director, after appropriate review by the director or his or her designees determines that the inclusion of bike facilities and pedestrian access would be contrary to acceptable standards of public safety, degrade environmental or scenic quality, or conflict with existing right of way. In his/her deliberations, the director shall take into consideration the cost of such facilities in relationship to available funding. Bike facilities may include bike lanes, routes or paths; permeable paved shoulders, and/or signage.

SECTION 66. Section 31-19.3-3 of the General Laws in Chapter 31-19.3 entitled "Regulation of Rental of Motorized Bicycles and Motorized Tricycles in New Shoreham" is hereby amended to read as follows:

31-19.3-3. License required -- No person, firm, or corporation shall offer for rent or lease or allow to be rented or leased any motorized bicycle or motorized tricycle within the town of New Shoreham, unless and until the town council of the town of New Shoreham issues a license in accordance with the provisions of this chapter, provided, however, that any person, firm, or corporation holding a license to rent or lease motorized bicycles or motorized tricycles on June 28, 1984, which has been issued by the department of transportation of the state of Rhode Island, shall be permitted to continue to operate pursuant to the license; provided, however, that upon the expiration of the license, the person, firm, or corporation shall be required to comply with the provisions of this chapter in order to rent or lease motorized bicycles or motorized tricycles within the town of New Shoreham.

SECTION 67. Section 31-22-22 of the General Laws in Chapter 31-22 entitled "Miscellaneous Rules" is hereby amended to read as follows:

31-22-22. Child restraint -- Safety belt use -- (a) Any person transporting a child under the age of four (4) years in a motor vehicle operated on the roadways, streets, or highways of this state, shall provide for the protection of the child and properly use a child restraint system approved by the United States department of transportation under federal standard 213.

(b) Any person transporting a child under the age of six (6) in a motor vehicle operated on the roadways, streets, or highways of this state, shall transport the child in the back seat of the motor vehicle properly restrained in a child restraint system approved by the United States Department of Transportation under Federal Standard 213 or if the child is between the ages of four (4) to six (6) years old the child shall be properly wearing a safety belt and/or shoulder harness approved by the department of transportation pursuant to federal standard 208 in the back seat of the motor vehicle unless:

(i) The vehicle is not equipped with a back seat; or

(ii) All back seating positions are being utilized by other children.

Provided, that in no event shall failure to wear a child restraint system or safety belt be considered as contributory or comparative negligence, nor the failure to wear said child restraint system, seat belt and/or shoulder harness be admissible as evidence in the trial of any civil action.

(c) Any person deemed in violation of subsection (a) herein shall be issued a citation. If the cited person presents proof of purchase of a federally approved child restraint system under standard 213 to the issuing police department within seven (7) days of issuance, the department shall void the violation. If the individual fails to present proof of purchase, he or she shall be required to appear for a hearing before the administrative adjudication court. Any person who violates the provisions of subsection (a) shall be fined one hundred fifty dollars ($150) for each offense, and it shall not be recorded on the person's driving record within the rules and regulations governing chapter 43 of this title.

(d) Any person deemed to be in violation of subsection (b) herein shall be fined thirty dollars ($30.00) and it shall not be recorded on the person's driving record within the rules and regulations governing chapter 43 of this title.

(e) All fines collected for violations of this section shall be payable to the state of Rhode Island. Provided, that fifty percent (50%) of the proceeds will be shared with the municipality whose law enforcement department issued the citation for the violations.

(f) Any operator of a motor vehicle transporting a person thirteen (13) years of age and older in the front or back seat of a motor vehicle operated on the roadways, streets or highways of this state shall ensure that the person be properly wearing a safety belt and/or shoulder harness system, as defined by federal motor vehicle safety standard 208. The provisions of this subsection shall apply only to those motor vehicles required by federal law to have safety belts.

(g) Any person who is an operator of a motor vehicle shall be properly wearing a safety belt and/or shoulder harness system as defined by federal motor vehicle safety standard 208 while the vehicle is in operation on any of the roadways, streets, or highways of this state. The provisions of this subsection shall apply only to those motor vehicles required by federal law to have safety belts.

In no event shall failure to wear a child restraint system or safety belt be considered as negligence, nor the failure to wear the child restraint system or safety belt be admissible as evidence in the trial of any civil action.

(h) The provisions of subsections (f), (g) and (n) shall not apply to a driver or passenger of:

(1) A passenger motor vehicle manufactured before July 1, 1966;

(2) A passenger motor vehicle in which the driver or passenger possesses a written verification from a licensed physician that the driver or passenger is unable to wear a safety seat belt system for physical or medical reasons; The verification time period shall not exceed twelve (12) months at which time a new verification may be issued;

(3) A passenger motor vehicle which is not required to be equipped with a safety seat belt system under federal laws; or

(4) A passenger motor vehicle operated by a letter carrier of the United States postal service while performing the duties of a letter carrier.

(i) A program of public information and education designed to educate the motoring public to the benefits of wearing safety belt systems, shall be developed by the Rhode Island department of transportation's governor's office on highway safety. The Rhode Island department of transportation's office on highway safety, in cooperation with the Rhode Island department of health, shall study the effectiveness of the implementation of this section and shall submit to the general assembly a report containing its findings by July 1, 1999.

(j) Violations of subsections (f) and (g) shall be considered secondary offenses and no motor vehicle may be stopped by any state or municipal law enforcement agency for failure of an operator or passenger to wear a safety belt system or for any violation of subsections (f) and (g); provided, however, that a motor vehicle may be stopped for failure to comply with the child restraint system as described in subsections (a) and (b) and (n).

Any person deemed to be in violation of subsections (f) and (g) during the period from July 1, 1998 to December 31, 1998, shall be issued a verbal warning of violation only. Any person violating subsections (f) and (g) herein after December 31, 1998 shall be fined thirty dollars ($30.00) and it shall not be recorded on said persons driving record within the rules and regulations governing chapter 43 of this title.

(k) [Deleted by P.L. 1998, ch. 36, section 1.]

(l) [Deleted by P.L. 1998, ch. 36, section 1.]

(m) [Deleted by P.L. 1998, ch. 36, section 1.]

(n) Any operator of a motor vehicle transporting a child between the ages of six (6) through twelve (12) in the front or back seat of a motor vehicle operated on the roadways, streets or highways of the state shall ensure that the person be properly wearing a safety belt and/or shoulder harness system, as defined by federal motor vehicle safety standard 208. The provisions of this subsection shall apply only to those motor vehicles required by federal law to have safety belts.

SECTION 68. Sections 31-23-4 and 31-23-53 of the General Laws in Chapter 31-23 entitled "Equipment and Accessories Generally" are hereby amended to read as follows:

31-23-4. Brake equipment required -- (a) Every motor vehicle, other than a motorcycle or motor-driven cycle, when operated upon a highway, shall be equipped with brakes adequate to control the movement of and to stop and hold the vehicle, including two (2) separate means of applying the brakes, each of which means shall be effective to apply the brakes to at least two (2) wheels. If these two separate means of applying the brakes are connected in any way, they shall be so constructed that failure of any one part of the operating mechanism shall not leave the motor vehicle without brakes on at least two (2) wheels.

(b) Every motorcycle, and motor-driven cycle, when operated upon a highway shall be equipped with at least one brake, which may be operated by hand or foot, and which is adequate to control and stop the vehicle.

(c) Every trailer or semitrailer of a gross weight of four thousand pounds (4,000 lbs.) or more, when operated upon a highway, shall be equipped with brakes adequate to control the movement of and to stop and to hold the vehicle, and so designed as to be applied by the driver of the towing motor vehicle from the driver's normal operating position, and the brakes shall be so designed and connected that in case of an accidental breakway of the towed vehicle, the brakes shall be automatically applied.

(d) Every new motor vehicle, trailer, or semitrailer hereafter sold in this state and operated upon the highways shall be equipped with service brakes upon all wheels of the vehicle, except any motorcycle or motor-driven cycle, and except that any semitrailer of less than four thousand pounds (4,000 lbs.) gross weight need not be equipped with brakes.

(e) In any combination of motor-drawn vehicles, means shall be provided for applying the rearmost trailer brakes, of any trailer equipped with brakes, in approximate synchronism with the brakes on the towing vehicle and developing the required braking effort on the rearmost wheels at the fastest rate; or means shall be provided for applying braking effort first on the rearmost trailer equipped with brakes; or both of the above means capable of being used alternatively may be employed.

(f) Every motor vehicle, trailer, semitrailer, and pole trailer, and any combination of those vehicles, except motorcycles and motor-driven cycles, shall be equipped with parking brakes adequate to hold the vehicle on any grade on which it is operated, under all conditions of loading on a surface free from snow, ice, or loose material. The parking brakes shall be capable of being applied in conformance with the foregoing requirements by the driver's muscular effort or by spring action or by equivalent means. The operation may be assisted by the service brakes or other source of power, provided that failure of the service brake actuation system or other power assisting mechanism will not prevent the parking brakes from being applied in conformance with the foregoing requirements. The parking brakes shall be so designed that when once applied they shall remain applied with the required effectiveness, despite exhaustion of any source of energy or leakage of any kind. The same brake drums, brake shoes and lining assemblies, brake shoe anchors, and mechanical brake shoe actuation mechanism normally associated with the wheel brake assemblies may be used for both the service brakes and the parking brakes. If the means of applying the parking brakes and the service brakes are connected in any way, they shall be so constructed that failure of any one part shall not leave the vehicle without operative brakes.

(g) The brake shoes operating within or upon the drums on the vehicle wheels of any motor vehicle may be used for both service and hand operation.

(h) It shall be unlawful on or after September 1, 1967 to sell, offer for sale, or distribute brake linings for use on motor vehicles, unless they are of a type and meet specifications promulgated by the registrar for motor vehicles. The registrar is hereby authorized and empowered to adopt and amend regulations governing types and promulgate specifications of brake linings which comply with approved standards, as promulgated by the vehicle equipment safety commission, and shall establish and maintain an approved list of brake linings meeting the specifications as herein established. Any person who violates the provisions of this section shall be guilty of a civil violation.

31-23-53. School bus public address sound system -- (a) Every school bus placed in service after January 1, 1987 shall be equipped with a public address sound system which shall be audible from a distance of not less than fifty feet (50') and shall have a minimum of one speaker mounted outside the bus and a minimum of one speaker mounted inside the bus. The public address system and the method of installation shall be approved and certified by the registry of motor vehicles. This system shall be inspected at all regularly scheduled inspections.

(b) When the driver of the school bus has picked up students, the bus will remain stopped, with red lights flashing, until all students are seated. Prior to any student being permitted to disembark from the bus, the driver shall look to see that all approaching traffic has stopped and observed the flashing red signal. After students have disembarked from the bus, the driver shall allow ample time for the students to clear the bus area before closing the doors and then, after remaining stopped for approximately ten (10) seconds, the driver shall announce through the public address system that the bus will proceed.

(c) The department of education shall require a demonstration of the operation of the public address system at each school. The demonstration shall take place at least two (2) times per year, one of which shall take place during the month of September.

(d) The provisions of this section shall not apply to school buses used exclusively for the transportation of students receiving special education pursuant to chapter 24 of title 16; provided, however, the school buses without the inside and outside speakers may not be used for students not receiving special education, except for transportation before or after normal school hours. This provision shall be limited to secondary education students.

SECTION 69. Section 31-24-52 of the General Laws in Chapter 31-24 entitled "Lighting Equipment and Reflectors" is hereby amended to read as follows:

31-24-52. Hazard switch for flashing lights -- All new automobiles and automobiles for hire sold in Rhode Island beginning with the 1969 models shall be provided with a hazard switch so as to produce a constant flashing light when the switch is activated. The switch shall be activated by the operator whenever any vehicle becomes disabled on any street or highway. The switch may be attached to the directional signal apparatus.

Nothing in this section shall affect regulations existing on May 24, 1967 under the regulations of the interstate commerce commission.

SECTION 70. Section 31-41.1-4 of the General Laws in Chapter 31-41.1 entitled "Adjudication of Traffic Offenses" is hereby amended to read as follows:

31-41.1-4. Schedule of violations -- (a) The penalties for violations of the enumerated sections correspond to the fines described; provided, however, those offenses for which punishments which may vary according to the severity of the offense, or punishment which require the violator to perform a service, shall be heard and decided by the traffic tribunal or municipal court. The following violations may be handled administratively through the method prescribed in this chapter; provided, however, this list is not exclusive and jurisdiction may be conferred on the traffic tribunal with regard to other violations.

VIOLATIONS SCHEDULE

31-10-32

Notice of change of address

$50.00

31-15-9

One way highways

50.00

31-14-3

Condition requiring reduced speed

50.00

31-13-9

Flashing signals

50.00

31-16-5

Turn signal required

50.00

31-16-2

Manner of turning at intersection

50.00

31-21-4

Places where parking or stopping prohibited

50.00

31-15-6

Clearance for overtaking

50.00

31-25-10

Fastening of load and covering

50.00

31-24-1

Times when lights required

50.00

through

   

31-24-53

Safety lights required on food vending

vehicles

31-15-4

Overtaking on left

50.00

31-15-5(a)

Overtaking on right

50.00

31-16-6

Time of signaling turn

50.00

31-17-4 Obedience to stop signs

50.00

 

31-22-9

Throwing debris on highway - snow

removal

50.00

31-17-2

Vehicle turning left

50.00

31-23-15

Rear view mirror

50.00

31-10.1-4

No motorcycle helmet (operator)

50.00

31-10.1-6

No motorcycle helmet (passenger)

50.00

31-15-12

Following too closely

50.00

31-14-9

Below minimum speed

50.00

31-15-3

Operator left of center

50.00

31-15-7

Places where overtaking prohibited

50.00

31-13-4

Obedience to devices

50.00

31-38-3

No inspection sticker

50.00

31-15-16

Use of emergency break-down lane for

 

travel

50.00

31-3-18

Display of plates

50.00

31-19-20

Sale of new bicycles

50.00

31-19-21

Sale of used bicycles

50.00

31-27-2.3

Refusal to take preliminary breath

 

test

50.00

24-10-17

Soliciting rides in motor vehicles

50.00

24-10-18

Backing up prohibited

50.00

31-3-32

Driving with expired registration

50.00

31-3-34

Failure to notify registry of change of

 

address

50.00

31-3-35

Notice of change of name

50.00

31-3-40

Temporary plates - dealer issued

50.00

31-4-3

Temporary registration - twenty (20)

day bill of sale

50.00

31-7-1

Operating on foreign registration

50.00

31-8-1

Operating without evidence of registration

50.00

31-10-10

Rules as to armed forces license

50.00

31-10-30

Driving on expired license

50.00

31-10.1-5

Motorcycle handlebar violation

50.00

31-10.1-7

Inspection of motorcycle required

50.00

31-12-2

Obedience to laws

50.00

31-13-6(c)(1)

Eluding traffic light

50.00

31-13-11

Injury to signs or devices

50.00

31-14-1

Reasonable and prudent speed

50.00

31-14-12

Speed limit on bridges and structures

50.00

31-15-1

Leaving lane of travel

50.00

31-15-2

Slow traffic to right

50.00

31-15-8

No passing zone

50.00

31-15-10

Rotary traffic islands

50.00

31-15-11

Laned roadway violation

50.00

31-15-12.1

Entering intersection

50.00

31-15-13

Crossing center section of divided

 

highway

50.00

31-15-14

Entering or leaving limited access

 

roadways

50.00

31-16-1

Care in starting from stop

50.00

31-16-4

U turn where prohibited

50.00

31-16-7

Failure to give stop signal

50.00

31-16-8

Method of giving signals

50.00

31-17-1

Failure to yield right of way

50.00

31-17-3

Yield right of way (intersection)

50.00

31-17-5

Entering from private road or

driveway

50.00

31-17-8

Vehicle within right of way, rotary

50.00

31-18-3

Right of way in crosswalks

50.00

31-18-5

Crossing other than at crosswalks

50.00

31-18-8

Due care by drivers

50.00

31-18-12

Hitchhiking

50.00

31-18-18

Right of way on sidewalks

50.00

31-19-3

Traffic laws applied to bicycles

50.00

31-19.1-2

Operating motorized bicycle on an

 

interstate highway

50.00

31-19.2-2

Operating motorized tricycle on an

 

interstate highway

50.00

31-20-1

Failure to stop at railroad crossing

50.00

31-20-2

Driving through railroad gate

50.00

31-20-9

Obedience to stop sign

50.00

31-21-14

Opening of vehicle doors

50.00

31-22-2

Improper backing up

50.00

31-22-4

Overloading vehicle

50.00

31-22-5

Violation of safety zone

50.00

31-22-6

Coasting

50.00

31-22-7

Following fire apparatus

50.00

31-22-8

Crossing fire hose

50.00

31-22-11.5

Improper use of school bus - not to

 

exceed five hundred dollars ($500) for

 

each day of improper use

31-22-22(a)

No child restraint

50.00

31-22-22(b)

No child restraint/seat belt and/or not

 

in back seat

50.00

31-22-22(f)(n)

No seat belt - passenger

50.00

31-22-22(g)

No seat belt operator

50.00

31-22-23

Tow trucks - proper identification

50.00

31-22-24

Operation of interior lights

50.00

31-23-1(b)

Department of Transportation motor

 

carrier safety rules and regulations

50.00

31-23-10

Sirens prohibited

50.00

31-23-13.1

Altering height or operating a motor

 

vehicle with an altered height

50.00

31-23-16

Windshield and window stickers

 

(visibility)

50.00

31-23-19

Metal tires prohibited

50.00

31-23-29

Flares or red flag required over

 

four thousand pounds (4,000 lbs.)

50.00

31-23-38

Television receivers prohibited

50.00

31-23-42.1

Special mirror - school bus

50.00

31-23-43

Chocks required (1 pair) - over

 

four thousand pounds (4,000 lbs.)

50.00

31-23-47 Slow moving emblem required

50.00

 

31-23-49

Transportation of gasoline - passenger

 

vehicle

50.00

31-23-51

Operating bike or motor vehicle

wearing ear phones (first offense)

50.00

31-24-5

Headlamp required on motorcycle

50.00

31-24-31

Flashing lights - permit required

50.00

31-24-34

Failure to dim lights

50.00

31-24-45

Red flag required, load projecting

four feet (4') rear

50.00

31-25-3

Maximum width of one hundred and

 

two inches (102") exceeded

50.00

31-25-4

Maximum height of one hundred

sixty-two inches (162") exceeded

50.00

31-25-7

Load extending three feet (3') front,

 

six feet (6') rear exceeded

50.00

31-25-9

Leaking load

50.00

31-25-11

Connections between coupled vehicles

50.00

31-25-12

Towing chain, twelve inch (12")

 

square flag required

50.00

31-25-12.1

Tow truck - use of lanes (first

 

offense)

50.00

31-25-17

Identification of trucks and

 

truck-tractors (first offense)

50.00

31-27-6

Use of lanes, commercial vehicles

50.00

31-27-16

Funeral processions

50.00

31-28-7(a)(4)

Wrongful use of handicapped (A)

 

parking placard

100.00

Handicapped First offense

75.00

 

parking space violation

   

Second offense

150.00

Third and subsequent offenses

300.00

31-28-7.1(e)

Wrongful use of institutional handi-

 

capped parking placard

100.00

31-33-2

Failure to file accident report

50.00

31-36.1-17

No fuel tax stamp (out-of-state)

50.00

50.00 31-38-4

Violation of inspection laws

50.00

31-43-1(1)

D.O.T. and D.E.M. violations

50.00

31-45-1

Noise limits

50.00

37-15-7

Littering

50.00

39-12-26

Public carriers violation

50.00

31-45-5

Audio Systems

50.00

SPEEDING Fine

One to fifteen miles per hour (1-15 mph) in excess of posted speed limit $50.00

(B) Sixteen miles per hour (16 mph) in excess of posted speed limit - minimum with a fine of ten dollars ($10.00) per mile in excess of speed limit shall be assessed 160.00.

(b) In addition to any other penalties provided by law, a judge may impose the following penalties for speeding:

(i) For speeds up to and including fifteen miles per hour (15 mph) over the posted speed limit on public highways, a fine as provided for in subsection (a) of this section for the first offense, ten dollars ($10.00) per mile for each mile in excess of the speed limit for the second offense if within twelve (12) months of the first offense, and fifteen dollars ($15.00) per mile for each mile in excess of the speed limit for the third and subsequent offense if within twelve (12) months of the first offense. In addition, the license may be suspended up to thirty (30) days.

(ii) For speeds in excess of fifteen miles per hour (15 mph) over the posted speed limit on public highways, a mandatory fine of ten dollars ($10.00) for each mile over the speed limit for the first offense, fifteen dollars ($15.00) per mile for each mile in excess of the speed limit for the second offense if within twelve (12) months of the first offense, and twenty dollars ($20.00) per mile for each mile in excess of the speed limit for the third and subsequent offense if within twelve (12) months of the first offense. In addition, the license may be suspended up to sixty (60) days.

(c) Any person charged with a violation who pays the fine administratively pursuant to section 31-41-3 31-41.1-3 shall not be subject to any additional costs or assessments, including but not limited to the hearing fee established in section 8-18-4 or assessment for substance abuse prevention.

SECTION 71. Section 17-12-2.1 of the General Laws in Chapter 17-12 entitled "Party Committees and Conventions" is hereby amended to read as follows:

17-12-2.1. Political party state committee rules or by-laws -- All political party state committee rules or by-laws and any amendments thereto must be filed with the state board of elections within thirty (30) days of their adoption.

If a political party duly adopts a rule or by-law consistent with state law relating to or affecting the conduct of an election held pursuant to title 17 as determined by the board of elections, such rule or by-law shall not affect any election which occurs less than one hundred eighty (180) days following the date of filing of any such rule or by-law with the state board of elections, except that in 1998, such rule or by-law shall not affect any election which occurs less than seventy-five (75) days following the date of filing of any such rule or by-law with the state board of elections.

SECTION 72. Section 31-23-42.2 of the General Laws in Chapter 31-23 entitled "Equipment and Accessories Generally" is hereby amended to read as follows:

31-23-42.2. Power equipment on school buses -- On and after March 30, 1978, eEvery new school bus within the state shall be equipped with a dual braking system, including a power braking system, and power steering.

SECTION 73. Section 31-23.3-6 of the General Laws in Chapter 31-23.3 entitled "Nontransparent Windshields and Windows" is hereby amended to read as follows:

31-23.3-6. Vehicles with existing sunscreening materials -- The owners of all motor vehicles who have sunscreening material in their motor vehicle in violation of the provisions of this chapter shall have until January 1, 1994 to remove said material before they may be found in violation of the provisions of this chapter; provided, however, an owner of a motor vehicle shall not be required to remove any sunscreening material if said material was initially installed by the motor vehicle manufacturer and was purchased prior to December 1, 1993.

SECTION 74. Section 17-11-1.1 of the General Laws in Chapter 17-11 entitled "Voting Districts and Officials" is hereby amended to read as follows:

17-11-1.1. Combination of voting districts for special elections -- (a) The board of canvassers of any city or town, for any special election to be held therein at which there will be submitted to the voters a question or questions for their approval or rejection but at which no state or local officials will be elected, shall have the power to combine two (2) or more voting districts within the same ward or senatorial and representative district, when in its judgment the combination is advisable, and when so combined shall be treated as a voting district. Notwithstanding the foregoing, for any special election at which there is on the ballot for all offices to be filled at the election only one candidate for each office, the board of canvassers of the city or town shall have the authority to combine likewise two (2) or more voting districts, but only upon the approval of the board of elections.

(b) If voting districts are combined as provided in subsection (a), the local board must advertise the combination of districts in a newspaper of general circulation in the city or town no less than seven (7) days and no more than twenty-one (21) days before the special election.

(c) The board of canvassers of the city of Pawtucket shall have the power to combine two (2) or more voting districts within the same ward or senatorial and representative district, notwithstanding subsection (a) of this section, for a special election to be held on March 3, 1998. Said districts shall be combined in the same manner as the primary to be held February 17, 1998.

SECTION 75. Sections 17-19-3.5, 17-19-3.6, 17-19-3.7, 17-19-3.8, 17-19-3.9, 17-19-3.10, 17-19-3.11, 17-19-3.12, 17-19-3.13, 17-19-3.14 and 17-19-3.15 of the General Laws in Chapter 17-19 entitled "Conduct of Election and Voting Equipment, and Supplies" are hereby repealed.

17-19-3.5. Electronic voting machines -- Trial basis -- (a) Notwithstanding anything to the contrary contained in titles 17 and 45, and provided that the state does not incur any costs greater than ordinarily would be incurred in the conduct of the hereinafter described election, the board of elections and the secretary of state shall be authorized and empowered (but not required) to conduct one or more local elections in 1993 using fully electronic voting machines; provided, however, that no such local election shall be conducted on such fully electronic voting machines without the concurrence of a majority of the members of the local legislative body of the city or town so selected by the board of elections; and provided, further, that any fully electronic voting machine so used shall operate in such manner as to meet the following requirements:

(1) It shall enable the voter to:

(i) Vote in secrecy;

(ii) Vote for all candidates of political parties or organizations, and for or against questions as submitted;

(iii) Vote for all the candidates of one party or in part for the candidates of one or more other parties;

(iv) Vote for as many persons for an office as the voter is lawfully entitled to vote for, but no more;

(v) Vote on any question the voter may have the right to vote on;

(2) It shall prevent the vote from voting for the same person more than once for the same office;

(3) The machine shall correctly register or record, and accurately count, all votes cast for any and all persons, and for or against any and all questions and shall be provided with:

(i) A "protective counter" which cannot be reset and which records the total number of voters who have voted on the machine;

(ii) A light to enable voters to read the ballot while voting;

(iii) A screen or screens to protect the privacy and confidentiality of the votes cast by the voter;

(iv) A machine face to contain the ballot and a button or other device by which a voter shall be clearly able to identify and vote for a candidate or question of his or her choice, and which shall also permit the inclusion of an identifying party label or emblem in the case of a partisan candidate election. The face of the machine must be of such size so as to contain a clearly legible ballot listing candidates, including candidates for the same office, in either vertical or horizontal columns or both, such ballot or ballots to be prepared by the secretary of state in conjunction with the board of elections;

(4) It shall correctly register the number of voters by whom it was used and every vote cast for each candidate and upon each question, and it shall be capable of being so closed during the time the polls are opened that no person can see or know the number of votes registered for any candidate or question;

(5) The machine shall be so equipped so as to prevent or readily detect any unauthorized use of such machine.

(b) Subject to the foregoing, the board of elections may approve for use in such 1993 local election any fully electronic voting equipment, and the results of the local election shall be as valid and binding as if mechanical lever voting machines had been used in the election. Except as they may be in conflict with the provisions of this section, all provisions of the general laws relating to the conduct of such local election, the eligibility of candidates therein, and the placement of questions on the ballot, shall be applicable. Also applicable shall be the provisions of any local charter affecting such local election.

17-19-3.6. Optical scan precinct count technology to be employed in North Providence election -- Declaration of purpose -- WHEREAS, The Town of North Providence has called for a special election to be held on March 21, 1995 for the purpose of voting upon the question, "Shall a commission be appointed to frame a charter?" and for choosing nine (9) persons to serve as members of the charter commission in the event that the above question is answered in the affirmative; and

WHEREAS, The records of the North Providence Board of Canvassers indicate that fifty-five (55) candidates filed declarations of candidacy; and

WHEREAS, The lever voting machines available from the state board of elections mechanically cannot allow a voter to cast up to nine (9) votes, to which the voter is entitled to vote, when there are more than thirty (30) candidates in the race; and

WHEREAS, The General Assembly finds that it is in the public interest to provide a system for said election other than a paper ballot which would need to be manually counted and which would delay the results of the election;

THEREFORE, The General Assembly determines that an optical scan precinct count system shall be employed in the town of North Providence to the extent provided in section17-19-3.7.

17-19-3.7. Optical scan precinct count voting equipment -- Trial basis -- North Providence -- Notwithstanding any law to the contrary contained in titles 17 and 45, and provided that the state does not incur any costs greater than ordinarily would be incurred in the conduct of the hereinafter described election, the board of elections and the secretary of state shall conduct the election referred to in section 17-19-3.6, through the use of the Optec III-PE Eagle optical scan precinct count units and related voting equipment as provided by the vendor, Business Records Corporation, BRC.

17-19-3.8. Optical scan precinct count technology to be employed in Jamestown municipal election -- Declaration of purpose -- WHEREAS, The Town of Jamestown will hold town elections on Wednesday, June 7, 1995; and

WHEREAS, Voting equipment technology has now advanced to the point where votes can be cast and reliably recorded on optical scan precinct count voting systems; and

WHEREAS, Such optical scan precinct count voting systems are now in use in various states and have resulted in returning accurate and reliable voting results within a shorter period of time than is possible through the use of mechanical lever machines; and

WHEREAS, The General Assembly finds that it is in the public interest to begin the process of conversion from mechanical lever voting machines to more modern voting technology;

Therefore, the General Assembly determines that an optical scan precinct count voting system shall be employed in the town of Jamestown to the extent provided in section 17-19-3.9.

17-19-3.9. Optical scan precinct count voting system -- Trial basis -- Jamestown -- Notwithstanding any law to the contrary contained in titles 17 through 45, and provided that the state does not incur any costs greater than ordinarily would be incurred in the conduct of the hereinafter described election, the board of elections and the secretary of state shall conduct the election referred to in section 17-19-3.8 through the use of the Optec III-PE Eagle optical scan precinct count units and related voting equipment as provided by the vendor, Business Records Corporation, BRC. Ballots shall be configured to conform to the operation of the voting equipment. The secretary of state and the vendor shall coordinate the vendor's schedule with the board of elections and the Jamestown board of canvassers. All voter education, poll worker training, and technical assistance associated with the use and operation of the optical scan voting equipment shall be the responsibility of the vendor.

17-19-3.10. Optical scan precinct count technology to be employed in the town of Lincoln -- An optical scan precinct count voting system shall be employed in the town of Lincoln to the extent provided in section 17-19-3.11 for the town election to take place on June 6, 1995.

17-19-3.11. Optical scan voting equipment -- Trial basis -- Lincoln -- Notwithstanding any law to the contrary in titles 17 and 45, and provided that the state does not incur any costs greater than ordinarily would be incurred in the conduct of the hereinafter described election, the board of elections and the secretary of state shall conduct the election referred to in section 17-19-3.10 in one council district to be determined by the local canvassing authority through the use of the AccuVote optical scan precinct count units and related voting equipment as provided by the vendor, LHS Associates. Ballots shall be configured to conform to the operation of said voting equipment. The secretary of state and the vendor shall coordinate the vendor's schedule with the board of elections and the Lincoln board of canvassers. All voter education, poll worker training and technical assistance associated with the use and operation of the optical scan voting equipment shall be the responsibility of the vendor.

17-19-3.12. Optical scan precinct count technology to be employed in Westerly local referenda election -- Declaration of purpose -- WHEREAS, The town of Westerly will hold town elections on Tuesday, June 20, 1995; and

WHEREAS, Voting equipment technology has now advanced to the point where votes can be cast and reliably recorded on optical scan precinct voting systems; and

WHEREAS, Such optical scan precinct count voting systems are now in use in various states and have resulted in returning accurate and reliable voting results within a shorter period of time than is possible through the use of mechanical lever machines; and

WHEREAS, The General Assembly finds that it is in the public interest to begin the process of conversion from mechanical lever voting machines to more modern voting technology; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the General Assembly determines that an optical scan precinct count voting system shall be employed in the town of Westerly to the extent provided in section 17-19-3.13.

17-19-3.13. Optical scan precinct count voting system -- Trial basis -- Westerly -- Notwithstanding any law to the contrary contained in titles 17 and 45, and provided that the state does not incur any costs greater than ordinarily would be incurred in the conduct of the hereinafter described election, the board of elections and the secretary of state shall conduct the election referred to in section 17-19-3.12 through the use of the Optec III-PE Eagle optical scan precinct count units and related voting equipment as provided by the vendor, Business Records Corporation, BRC. Ballots shall be configured to conform to the operation of the voting equipment. The secretary of state and the vendor shall coordinate the vendor's schedule with the board of elections and the Westerly board of canvassers. All voter education, poll worker training and technical assistance associated with the use and operation of the optical scan voting equipment shall be the responsibility of the vendor.

17-19-3.14. Optical scan precinct count technology to be employed in South Kingstown municipal election -- Declaration of purpose -- WHEREAS, The Town of South Kingstown will hold a special local referenda election on Tuesday, June 20, 1995; and

WHEREAS, Voting equipment technology has now advanced to the point where votes can be cast and reliably recorded on optical scan precinct count voting systems; and

WHEREAS, Such optical scan precinct count voting systems are now in use in various states and have resulted in returning accurate and reliable voting results within a shorter period of time than is possible through the use of mechanical lever machines; and

WHEREAS, The General Assembly finds that it is in the public interest to begin the process of conversion from mechanical lever voting machines to more modern voting technology;

Therefore, the General Assembly determines that an optical scan precinct count voting system shall be employed in the town of South Kingstown to the extent provided in section 17-19-3.15.

17-19-3.15. Optical scan precinct count voting system -- Trial basis -- South Kingstown -- Notwithstanding any law to the contrary contained in titles 17 through 45, and provided that the state does not incur any costs greater than ordinarily would be incurred in the conduct of the hereinafter described election, the board of elections and the secretary of state shall conduct the election referred to in section 17-19-3.14 through the use of the Accu Vote optical scan precinct count units and related voting equipment as provided by the vendor, LHS Association. Ballots shall be configured to conform to the operation of the voting equipment. The secretary of state and the vendor shall coordinate the vendor's schedule with the board of elections and the town of South Kingstown board of canvassers. All voter education, poll worker training, and technical assistance associated with the use and operation of the optical scan voting equipment shall be the responsibility of the vendor.

SECTION 76. Chapter 94-70 , Article 21, Section 1 of the 1994 Public Laws is hereby amended to read as follows:

ARTICLE 21

TRANSFERRING THE REGISTRY OF MOTOR VEHICLES TO THE DEPARTMENT OF ADMINISTRATION

Section 1. In any general or special law of the state of Rhode Island, and specifically in title 31 of the general laws of Rhode Island, 1956, as amended, reference to the registry of motor vehicles or the division of motor vehicles shall be construed to refer to the registry of motor vehicles division of motor vehicles within the department of administration. Any reference to the registrar of motor vehicles or the assistant director of transportation for motor vehicles shall be construed to refer to the administrator of the division of motor vehicles registrar of motor vehicles within the department of administration. Any duties conferred upon the department of transportation or the director of the department of transportation by said title 31 shall be construed to refer to the department of administration or the director of administration; provided, however, that chapter 13, and all sections of title 31 referring to the state traffic commission, remain under the authority of the department of transportation or the director of transportation and the director of administration may delegate in writing to the director of transportation such duties and responsibilities as he or she may deem appropriate in relation to highway safety.

The law revision officer director of the joint committee on legislative affairs services is authorized and empowered to make appropriate changes in said title 31 to carry out the intent of this act.

SECTION 77. Section 31-2-1 of the General Laws in Chapter 31-2 entitled "Registry of Motor Vehicles" is hereby amended to read as follows:

31-2-1. Establishment -- Appointment and duties of registrar - Establishment - Duties - Chief of division. -- Within the department of administration there shall be a registry division of motor vehicles. under the direction of a registrar of motor vehicles who shall be appointed by the governor and shall serve at the governor's pleasure. The division registrar shall will be responsible for activities assigned to it by law, including but not limited to, motor vehicle registration, testing and licensing of motor vehicle operators, inspection of motor vehicles, and enforcement of laws relating to the issuance, suspension and revocation of motor vehicle registrations and drivers' licenses. The division shall administer the financial responsibility law. The chief of the division shall use the title and designation "Registrar" or "Administrator" on all licenses, registrations, orders of suspensions, financial responsibility notices or orders, or any other official documents issued or promulgated by the division. supervise the enforcement of all laws relating to the issuance, suspension, and revocation of motor vehicle registrations and licenses, the inspection of motor vehicles, and the study and analysis of motor vehicle accidents. He or she shall exercise all powers and duties prescribed by chapters 1 -- 27, inclusive, of this title and shall supervise and direct the promotion of highway traffic safety.

SECTION 78. This act shall take effect upon passage.


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