Chapter 273

2011 -- S 0342

Enacted 07/12/11





     Introduced By: Senator Joshua Miller

     Date Introduced: February 16, 2011


It is enacted by the General Assembly as follows:


     SECTION 1. Chapter 16-59 of the General Laws entitled "Board of Governors for Higher

Education" is hereby amended by adding thereto the following section:


     16-59-25.1. Maintenance of voter registration files. – (a) In order to better maintain

voter registration files, all institutions of higher education shall, on or before August 15th of each

year, electronically transmit a text file or database to the secretary of state containing the names

and current addresses of those students who have graduated that year and for whom public

directory information is available. Within fifteen (15) days of the receipt of the file or database,

the secretary of state may send a letter to each such student requesting verification as to whether

such student intends to continue to reside in the State of Rhode Island.

     (b) The letter shall:

     (1) Request the student, if he or she has moved to a new address within Rhode Island, to

complete a form, enclosed with the letter, allowing him or her to provide a new address for re-

registration purposes;

     (2) Request the student, if he or she has moved to a new address outside of Rhode Island,

to so advise the secretary of state on a form enclosed with the letter, authorizing his or her

removal from the voter registration list;

     (3) Remind the student to re-register at a new address if he or she subsequently moves

from their current address; and

     (4) Make clear that the request for information is strictly voluntary, that the student has

no obligation to respond to the letter, and that no student shall be removed from the voter

registration list unless such student responds to the mailing and authorizes his or her removal

from the voter registration list.

     (c) Mailings conducted pursuant to this section shall not seek address correction from the

postal service. In the event that a letter is nonetheless returned as undeliverable to the address

where the letter was sent, it shall not serve as a basis for initiating the confirmation process

established in section 17-9.1-26.

     (d) The form letter used by the secretary of state to implement this provision shall be

adopted in accordance with the rule-making provisions of chapter 35 of title 42 (The

“Administrative Procedures Act”).


     SECTION 2. This act shall take effect upon passage.