Chapter 302
2019 -- H 5986
Enacted 07/19/2019

A N   A C T

Introduced By: Representative Stephen R. Ucci
Date Introduced: April 11, 2019

It is enacted by the General Assembly as follows:
     SECTION 1. Section 17-23-18 of the General Laws in Chapter 17-23 entitled "Election
Offenses" is hereby amended to read as follows:
     17-23-18. Political advertising from official budgets prohibited.
     (a) Except in accordance with subsections (b) and (c) of this section, no No elected
official shall permit the expenditure of public funds from any official budget under his or her
authority for any publication, advertisement, broadcast, or telecast of his or her photograph,
voice, or other likeness to be broadcast or distributed to the public during the one hundred and
twenty (120) days preceding any primary or general election in which he or she is a candidate.
     (b) This section shall not be construed to prohibit an official from appearing on regular
capitol television programming operated by the general assembly or on television stations
operated by the Rhode Island PBS Foundation during the period of time or programming of
regular or special meetings of city or town councils or any local governmental board, agency or
other entity.
     (c) This section shall not be construed to prohibit the publication, broadcast, or telecast of
any photograph, voice, or other likeness of an elected official which that is distributed to the
public by or through an official government website or social media presence provided that such
the website or social media presence is continuously maintained in the regular course of official
government business exclusively for general informational or transparency purposes.
     SECTION 2. This act shall take effect upon passage.