2012 -- H 7985

Enacted 06/11/12







     Introduced By: Representatives Ruggiero, Martin, Jackson, Reilly, and E Coderre

     Date Introduced: March 22, 2012



     WHEREAS, In 1965, Senator Claiborne Pell sponsored legislation creating the National

Endowment for the Humanities; and

     WHEREAS, Senator Pell believed that promoting the humanities was “significant to our

nation’s cultural advancement and to the full growth of a truly great society”; and

     WHEREAS, Article XII of the Rhode Island Constitution underscores the importance of

the diffusion of knowledge, as well as of virtue among the people being essential to the

preservation of their rights and liberties”; and

     WHEREAS, The humanities are an integral part of Rhode Island’s economy, culture, and

public life; and

     WHEREAS, It is the priority of the general assembly, in keeping with Senator Pell’s

vision, to inspire intellectual curiosity and imagination and ignite the diffusion of knowledge in

all Rhode Islanders by promoting the public understanding of the tradition of thought and

accomplishment that is the humanities; now, therefore be it

     RESOLVED, That a special legislative commission to be known as “The Senator

Claiborne Pell Legislative Commission on the Humanities” be and the same is hereby created

consisting of twelve (12) members: three (3) of whom shall be members of the house of

representatives, not more than two (2) from the same political party, to be appointed by the

speaker of the house; three (3) of whom shall be members of the senate, not more than two (2)

from the same political party, to be appointed by the president of the senate; and six (6) of whom

shall be citizens of Rhode Island, three (3) of whom shall be appointed by the speaker of the

house, and three (3) of whom shall be appointed by the president of the senate.

     In lieu of any appointment of a member of the legislature to a permanent advisory

commission, a legislative study commission, or any commission created by a general assembly

resolution, the appointing authority may appoint a member of the general public to serve in lieu

of a legislator, provided that the majority leader or the minority leader of the political party which

is entitled to the appointment consents to the member of the general public.

     The purpose of said commission shall be to examine the state of the humanities in Rhode

Island, develop strategies that foster a greater appreciation of the humanities by our state’s

citizenry, and promote the incorporation of the humanities curricula in public and private

institutions of learning.

     Forthwith upon passage of this resolution, the members of the commission shall meet at

the call of the speaker of the house and the president of the senate and organize and shall select a

chairperson from among the legislators. Vacancies in said commission shall be filled in like

manner as the original appointment.

     The membership of said commission shall receive no compensation for their services.

     All departments and agencies of the state, shall furnish such advice and information,

documentary and otherwise, to said commission and its agents as is deemed necessary or

desirable by the commission to facilitate the purposes of this resolution.

     The Rhode Island council on the humanities will provide staffing and support to the

commission; and be it further

     RESOLVED, That the commission shall annually report its findings and

recommendations to the general assembly.