2003 -- S 0959
A N A C T
RELATING TO THE TOWN OF SCITUATE - - JUVENILE HEARING BOARD
Introduced By: Senator Leo R. Blais
Date Introduced: March 25, 2003
It is enacted by the General Assembly as follows:
SECTION 1. For the purposes of promoting the public health, safety, morals or general
welfare, the town council of the town of Scituate shall have the power in accordance with the
provisions of this act within the limits of said town by ordinance, to pass, ordain, establish and
amend an ordinance to establish a juvenile hearing board.
Without limiting the generality of the aforementioned, such ordinances shall include the
SECTION 1. Establishment. - - There is hereby established a juvenile hearing board
for the town of Scituate for the purpose of hearing all cases referred to it by the juvenile division
of the police department or the chief of police of the town of Scituate with respect to persons
under the age of eighteen (18) who are charged with violating the criminal laws of the state of
Rhode Island or the town of Scituate.
SECTION 2. Membership. - - (a) The membership of the Scituate juvenile hearing
board (the board) shall consist of five (5) members, all of whom shall be electors of the town of
Scituate over the age of eighteen (18) years.
(b) The members of the board shall be appointed by majority vote of the town council.
(c) The term of appointment for members of the board shall be for three (3) years, except
that the initial appointments shall be for less than three (3) years, and the town council may
stagger such initial appointments as in its discretion it shall see fit, by majority vote.
(d) Appointed members of the board shall be eligible for reappointment, and upon
expiration of their term shall continue to serve until replaced or reappointed. In the event of a
vacancy on the board, interim appointments of appointed members may be made by the town
council to complete the unexpired term of the vacant position.
SECTION 3. Referral to the Board. - - (a) Persons who are under the age of eighteen
(18) years may be referred to the board, which shall have concurrent jurisdiction with the Rhode
Island Family Court if the alleged offense is one which, if committed by an adult, would be a
misdemeanor, provided, however, that the requirement shall not apply in the case of any person:
(1) charged with the offense of simple assault;
(2) who shall have been twice previously referred to the board or have been once
previously referred and refused or failed to abide by the sanctions imposed or make the restitution
(3) at the time of the alleged commission of such offense shall be within the custody and
control of the Family Court.
(b) The juvenile division of the police department or the chief of police of the town of
Scituate may also refer to the board any other juvenile offender if, in the opinion of the juvenile
division or the chief of police, such referral would be beneficial to the juvenile concerned and the
community at large.
(c) No referral to the board shall be made until such person, together with his/her legal
guardian(s) and/or legal representative, shall have in writing waived such personís right to a
hearing in Family Court with respect to the offense charged, has admitted to the alleged offense,
and shall have agreed to abide by the decision of the board.
SECTION 4. Duties of the board. - - (a) The board shall be authorized to hear all cases,
referred by the juvenile division of the police department or the chief of police, and to impose and
order sanctions other than incarceration. Sanctions may include, but are not limited to:
(1) Fines up to a maximum of one hundred dollars ($100) for each offense charged;
(2) Community service;
(3) Restitution for any injuries and/or damages, where appropriate, resulting from the
commission of any offense;
(4) Imposition of a reasonable curfew;
(5) Denial or revocation of the juvenileís driving privileges for a period of up to two (2)
(b) In any such proceedings, the board, prior to imposing sanctions, shall request the
juvenile offender and his/her parents or legal guardian(s) to agree to the sanctions imposed, the
amount of the restitution and manner of making the same. In ordering restitution, the board shall
take into account the juvenile offenderís ability to pay and the amount of actual damage caused as
a result of the commission of such offenses.
SECTION 5. Quorum - - Rules. - - (a) A majority of the boardís membership shall
constitute a quorum, and a majority of the members present shall be required to take any action.
Any juvenile offender may be represented by counsel and may present evidence in his or her
(b) The board shall have the power from time to time to adopt and publish all rules and
regulations necessary to carry out its function under the provisions of this ordinance.
(c) The board shall give notice of the date and time of meeting to the juvenile division of
the police department or the chief of police of the town of Scituate, and the alleged juvenile
offender and his/her parents or legal guardian(s), not less than seven (7) days prior to the date of
(d) Board proceedings shall be closed to the public, and the provisions of chapters 42-46
of the Rhode Island general laws shall not apply to such proceedings. All records or proceedings,
including records concerning the arrest, apprehension or detention of any juvenile offender, shall
be withheld from public inspection but such records shall be available to the parent, legal
guardian(s), or attorney of the juvenile for inspection.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect upon passage and shall apply to all juveniles
alleged to have committed an offense after the date of enactment.