2007 -- S 0975
A N A C T
RELATING TO THE CONVENTION CENTER AUTHORITY
Introduced By: Senator Maryellen Goodwin
Date Introduced: May 02, 2007
It is enacted by the General Assembly as follows:
SECTION 1. Section 42-99-4 of the General Laws in Chapter 42-99 entitled "Convention
Center Authority Act" is hereby amended to read as follows:
42-99-4. Creation of a corporation -- Composition -- Personnel -- Compensation. --
(a) There is created and established a public corporation of the state, having a distinct legal
existence from the state and not constituting a department of the state government, with those
corporate powers that are set forth in this chapter to be known as "convention center authority",
or by any other name that the board of commissioners may select which appropriately identifies
the corporation's activities or location, to carry out the provisions of this chapter. The corporation
is constituted a public instrumentality exercising public and essential governmental functions, and
the exercise by the corporation of the powers conferred by this chapter shall be deemed and held
to be the performance of an essential governmental function of the state. The corporation shall be
deemed a "state agency or department" for the purposes of chapter 75.2 of this title. It is the intent
of the general assembly by the passage of this chapter to incorporate a public corporation and
instrumentality and agency of the state for the purpose of carrying on the activities authorized,
and to vest that corporation with all powers, authority, rights, privileges, and titles that may be
necessary to enable it to accomplish those purposes. This chapter shall be liberally construed in
conformity with the purpose expressed.
(b) The corporation is created, established, and incorporated for the following purposes:
to construct, manage, and operate a convention center and to acquire by purchase or otherwise
(c) The convention center shall be located in one of the cities or towns in the state in
which the mayor (if a city) or a president of the town council (if a town) and the governor agree
that the convention center shall be located.
(d) (i) The powers of the corporation shall be vested in a board of commissioners having
nine (9) members through June 30, 2006 and eleven (11) members thereafter, who shall be
appointed in the manner set forth in this section. Forthwith upon the enactment of this chapter, the
governor and chief municipal officer (sometimes referred to as the "appointing authorities") will
each appoint four (4) commissioners for terms ending respectively on June 30, 1988, June 30,
1989, and June 30, 1990, and June 30, 1991, and thereafter until their respective successors are
appointed and shall have qualified. Beginning on June 30, 1988, and on each June 30 thereafter,
the appointing authorities shall appoint commissioners to succeed the commissioners whose
terms are then ending and to serve for terms of four (4) years.
Notwithstanding the foregoing, on and after June 30, 1991 the governor shall have the
power to appoint seven (7) commissioners and the appropriate municipal authority shall have the
power to appoint three (3) commissioners to serve for terms of four (4) years. This change shall
be effected as follows:
On June 30, 1991 and June 30, 1992, the governor shall appoint a commissioner to
succeed one commissioner, previously appointed by the governor whose term is then ending to
serve terms of four (4) years. On June 30, 1991 and June 30, 1992 the chief municipal officer
shall appoint a commissioner to succeed one commissioner, previously appointed by the chief
municipal officer, whose term is then ending, to serve terms of four (4) years. On June 30, 1993
and on June 30, 1994, the governor shall appoint both commissioners to succeed the
commissioners whose terms are then ending, to serve for terms of four (4) years. On July 1, 2006
the governor and the city council of the city of Providence shall each appoint one additional
commissioner, to serve terms of four (4) years. The appointments by the governor are designated
"gubernatorial commissioners". The commissioners appointed by the chief municipal officer or
the city council of the city of Providence are designated "municipal commissioners". The
governor and the appropriate municipal authority shall have the power to appoint commissioners
to succeed the gubernatorial commissioners and the municipal commissioners respectively when
the terms of the gubernatorial commissioners and the municipal commissioners end, for a period
of four (4) years.
(ii) Forthwith upon the enactment of this chapter, the governor and the chief municipal
officer will jointly appoint a ninth (9th) commissioner who will act as chairperson of the
corporation and whose four (4) year term will end on June 30, 1991. On June 30, 1991, the
governor shall appoint a ninth (9th) commissioner who will serve as chairperson until the
expiration of a second full four (4) year term on June 30, 1995. Thereafter, the ninth (9th) or, as
appropriate after July 1, 2006, the eleventh (11th), commissioner will be appointed (for
successive four (4) year terms) by the governor and the chairperson will be elected from among
its members by the board of commissioners.
(iii) All commissioners, whether appointed by the governor, the chief municipal officer or
the city council of Providence shall require the advice and consent of the senate.
(e) Any commissioner may be reappointed with the advice and consent of the senate for
successive terms. Any commissioner may be removed by the appointing authority for
misfeasance, malfeasance or willful neglect of duty. Any vacancy resulting from the death,
disability, or other failure of a commissioner to continue to serve may be filled by the person
given the power to make the original appointment.
(f) The board of commissioners shall elect from among its members, a vice chairperson,
any other officers that they may determine, including a secretary and a treasurer, and, beginning
on July 1, 1995, a chairperson. Meetings shall be held at the call of the chairperson or whenever
two (2) commissioners request. Action by the corporation may be taken by the board of
commissioners at any regular or special meeting at which a quorum is present. Five (5)
commissioners of the corporation shall constitute a quorum for meetings prior to July 1, 2006,
and six (6) commissioners of the corporation shall constitute a quorum for meetings thereafter.
Any action taken by the corporation under the provisions of this chapter shall require the
affirmative vote of not less than five (5) commissioners for meetings prior to July 1, 2006, and six
(6) commissioners for meetings thereafter. No vacancy in the membership of the corporation shall
impair the right of a quorum to exercise all of the rights and perform all of the duties of the
(g) Commissioners shall receive no compensation for the performance of their duties, but
each commissioner shall be reimbursed for his or her reasonable expenses incurred in carrying
out the duties under this chapter.
(h) Notwithstanding the provisions of any other law, no officer or employee of the state
shall be deemed to have forfeited or shall forfeit his or her office or employment by reason of his
or her acceptance of membership of the corporation or his or her service thereto.
(i) The commissioners may employ an executive director who shall administer, manage,
and direct the affairs and business of the corporation, subject to the policies, control, and direction
of the commissioners. The commissioners may employ technical experts and any other officers
and agents and fix their qualification, duties, and compensation. The executive director and
technical experts, officers, agents, and attorneys so employed shall not be subject to the
provisions of the classified service. The commissioners may employ other employees, permanent
and temporary, as they deem necessary. The commissioners may delegate to one or more of the
corporation's agents or employees those administrative duties they may deem proper.
(j) The commissioners may authorize the engagement of any other person, corporation,
or other entity including, without limiting the generality of the foregoing, any public body
corporate and politic located within the municipality as they may select to undertake the staffing
and management of the convention center (including the scheduling of events and related
activities) upon any terms and for any periods of time that they may deem proper.
(k) The secretary shall keep a record of the proceedings of the corporation and shall be
custodian of all books, documents, and papers filed with the corporation and of its minute book
and seal. The secretary shall have the authority to cause to be made copies of all minutes and
other records and documents of the corporation and to give certificates under the seal of the
corporation to the effect that the copies are true copies and all persons dealing with the
corporation may rely upon the certificates.
(l) No part of the net earnings of the corporation shall be distributable to, or inure to the
benefit of, any private person.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect upon passage.