§ 22-3-3. Organization of house of representatives Speaker Clerks.
At the time specified in § 22-3-17, the house of representatives shall be called to order by the senior member in continuous service present from Newport, and if there are two (2) or more members from Newport of equal seniority of service then by that one of them that shall be senior in age, and if there is no member present from Newport, by the senior member of the house in continuous service present, and, if there are two (2) or more members of equal seniority of service, then by that one of them who is senior in age. The roll of members as appears by the list of representatives shall then be called by the reading clerk, as provided in § 22-3-2. If it appears that thirty-eight (38) of the members whose names are upon the list are present, but not otherwise, the member calling the house of representatives to order as provided in this section shall call for nominations for the office of speaker, and shall receive the ballots of the members whose names are on the list for that office, and after the ballots have been counted by him or her and by the clerks of the house, he or she shall declare the result, and the balloting shall continue until some person receives a majority of all the ballots, and the person receiving that majority shall be the speaker of the house for the ensuing term of two (2) years. The member so calling the house to order shall not receive, entertain, or put to vote any motion or question whatever, or point of order, while acting as presiding officer, and any member violating any of the foregoing provisions of this section, or allowing any person whose name is not upon the list to participate in the organization of the house or to cast any ballot for speaker, or who shall allow to be used in the organization of the house any list of members not prepared and corrected as provided in this chapter, shall be imprisoned not less than one year nor more than three (3) years; and any clerk or other person who shall use this list in the organization of the house, or who shall fraudulently alter, secrete, or destroy any list of members, prepared or prepared and corrected, as provided in § 22-3-1, shall be punished by like imprisonment. Immediately upon the election of a speaker, the house of representatives shall proceed to elect by ballot a clerk of the house and a recording clerk, and upon the election of a speaker and clerks as provided, the house of representatives shall be deemed to be organized and shall immediately notify the senate that it is duly organized and ready to proceed with the business of the session. The clerks shall hold office for two (2) years, and until their successors are elected and qualified.
(G.L. 1896, ch. 19, § 11; G.L. 1909, ch. 25, § 11; G.L. 1909, ch. 25, § 26; P.L. 1910, ch. 640, § 34; P.L. 1914, ch. 1051, § 5; G.L. 1923, ch. 24, § 27; G.L. 1923, ch. 24, § 28; P.L. 1930, ch. 1526, § 1; G.L. 1938, ch. 301, § 28; G.L. 1956, § 22-3-3; P.L. 2000, ch. 435, § 1; P.L. 2002, ch. 4, § 12.)