§ 16-7-41.1. Eligibility for reimbursement.
(a) School districts, not municipalities, may apply for and obtain approval for a project under the necessity of school construction process set forth in the regulations of the board of regents for elementary and secondary education, provided, however, in the case of municipality which issues bonds through the Rhode Island Health and Educational Building Corporation to finance or refinance school facilities for a school district which is not part of the municipality, the municipality may apply for and obtain approval for a project. Such approval will remain valid until June 30 of the third fiscal year following the fiscal year in which the board of regents for elementary and secondary education's approval is granted. Only those projects undertaken at school facilities under the care and control of the school committee and located on school property may qualify for reimbursement under §§ 16-7-35 16-7-47. Facilities with combined school and municipal uses or facilities that are operated jointly with any other profit or non-profit agency do not qualify for reimbursement under §§ 16-7-35 16-7-47. Projects completed by June 30 of a fiscal year are eligible for reimbursement in the following fiscal year. A project for new school housing or additional housing shall be deemed to be completed when the work has been officially accepted by the school committee or when the housing is occupied for its intended use by the school committee, whichever is earlier.
(b) Notwithstanding the provisions of this section, the board of regents shall not grant final approval for any project between June 30, 2011 and May 1, 2015 except for projects that are necessitated by immediate health and safety reasons. In the event that a project is requested during the moratorium because of immediate health and safety reasons, those proposals shall be reported to the chairs of the house and senate finance committees.
(c) Any project approval granted prior to the adoption of the school construction regulations in 2007, and which are currently inactive; and any project approval granted prior to the adoption of the school construction regulations in 2007 which did not receive voter approval or which has not been previously financed, are no longer eligible for reimbursement under this chapter. The department of elementary and secondary education shall develop recommendations for further cost containment strategies in the school housing aid program.
(d) Beginning July 1, 2015, the council on elementary and secondary education shall approve new necessity of school construction applications on an annual basis. The department of elementary and secondary education shall develop an annual application timeline for LEAs seeking new necessity of school construction approvals.
(P.L. 2003, ch. 376, art. 9, § 2; P.L. 2011, ch. 151, art. 5, § 3; P.L. 2013, ch. 144, art. 13, § 1; P.L. 2013, ch. 501, § 21; P.L. 2014, ch. 145, art. 22, § 1; P.L. 2015, ch. 141, art. 9, § 1.)