TITLE 23
Health and Safety

CHAPTER 23-20.10
Public Health and Workplace Safety Act

SECTION 23-20.10-2


23-20.10-2 Definitions.

The following words and phrases, whenever used in this chapter, shall be construed as defined in this section:

(1) "Assisted living residence" means a residence that provides personal assistance and meals to adults in accordance with chapter 17.4 of this title.

(2) "Bar" means an establishment that is devoted to the serving of alcoholic beverages for consumption by guests on the premises and in which the serving of food is only incidental to the consumption of those beverages, including, but not limited to, taverns, nightclubs, cocktail lounges and cabarets.

(3) "Business" means a sole proprietorship, partnership, joint venture, corporation, or other business entity formed for profit-making purposes, including retail establishments where goods or services are sold as well as professional corporations and other entities where legal, medical, dental, engineering, architectural or other professional services are delivered.

(4) "Employee" means a person who is employed by an employer in consideration for direct or indirect monetary wages or profit and a person who volunteers his or her services for a nonprofit entity.

(5) "Employer" means a person, business, partnership, association, corporation, including a municipal corporation, trust or nonprofit entity that employs the services of one or more individual persons.

(6) "Enclosed area" means all space between a floor and ceiling that is enclosed on all sides by solid walls or windows (exclusive of doorways) that extend from the floor to the ceiling.

(7) "Health care facility" means an office or institution providing care or treatment of diseases, whether physical, mental, emotional, or other medical, physiological or psychological conditions, including, but not limited to, hospitals, rehabilitation hospitals or other clinics, including weight control clinics, nursing homes, homes for the aging or chronically ill, laboratories, and offices of surgeons, chiropractors, physical therapists, physicians, dentists, and all specialists within these professions. This definition shall include all waiting rooms, hallways, private rooms, semi-private rooms, and wards within health care facilities.

(8) "Place of employment" means an area under the control of a public or private employer that employees normally frequent during the course of employment, including, but not limited to, work areas, employees lounges, restrooms, conference rooms, meeting rooms, classrooms, employee cafeterias, and hallways. Vehicles owned by a public or private employer are covered under this definition provided that the vehicle is used by more than one person. A private residence is not a "place of employment" unless it is used as a child care, adult day care, or health care facility.

(9) "Public place" means an enclosed area to which the public is invited or in which the public is permitted, including, but not limited to, banks, bars, educational facilities, health care facilities, laundromats, public transportation facilities, reception areas, restaurants, retail food production and marketing establishments, retail service establishments, retail stores, shopping malls, sports arenas, the state house, theaters and waiting rooms. A private residence is not a "public place" unless it is used as a child care, adult day care, or health care facility.

(10) "Restaurant" means an eating establishment, including, but not limited to, coffee shops, cafeterias, and private and public school cafeterias, that gives or offers for sale food to the public, guests, or employees, as well as kitchens and catering facilities in which food is prepared on the premises for serving elsewhere. The term "restaurant" shall include a bar area within the restaurant.

(11) "Retail tobacco store" means a retail store utilized primarily for the sale of tobacco products and accessories in which the total annual revenues generated by the sale of other products are no greater than twenty-five percent (25%) of the total revenue for the establishment. The division of taxation shall be responsible for the determination under this section and shall promulgate any rules or forms necessary for the implementation of this section.

(12) "Service line" means an indoor line in which one or more persons are waiting for or receiving service of any kind, whether or not the service involves the exchange of money.

(13) "Shopping mall" means an enclosed public walkway or hall area that serves to connect retail or professional establishments.

(14) "Smoking" means inhaling, exhaling, burning, or carrying any lighted cigar, cigarette, pipe, weed, plant, or other combustible substance in any manner or in any form; provided, however, that smoking shall not include burning during a religious ceremony.

(15)(a) "Smoking bar" means an establishment whose business is primarily devoted to the serving of tobacco products for consumption on the premises, in which the annual revenues generated by tobacco sales are greater than fifty percent (50%) of the total revenue for the establishment and the serving of food or alcohol is only incidental to the consumption of such tobacco products. Effective July 1, 2015, all existing establishments and establishments that open thereafter must demonstrate quarterly, for a period of one year and annually thereafter, that the annual revenue generated from the serving of tobacco products is greater than fifty percent (50%) of the total revenue for the establishment, and the serving of food, alcohol, or beverages is only incidental to the consumption of such tobacco products. Every owner of a smoking bar shall register no later than January 1 of each year with the division of taxation and shall provide, at a minimum, the owner's name and address and the name and address of the smoking bar. The division of taxation in the department of administration shall be responsible for the determination under this section and shall promulgate any rules or forms necessary for the implementation of this section. The division of taxation in the department of administration shall be responsible for the determination under this section and shall promulgate any rules or forms necessary for the implementation of this section.

(b) Smoking bars shall only allow consumption of food and beverages sold by the establishment on the premises and the establishment shall have public access only from the street.

(c) Any smoking bar, as defined herein, is required to provide a proper ventilation system that will prevent the migration of smoke into the street.

(16) "Sports arena" means sports pavilions, stadiums, (indoor or outdoor) organized sports fields, gymnasiums, health spas, boxing arenas, swimming pools, roller and ice rinks, bowling alleys, and other similar places where members of the general public assemble to engage in physical exercise, participate in athletic competition, or witness sports or other events.

(17) "Legislature" means the general assembly of the state of Rhode Island.

History of Section.
(P.L. 2004, ch. 198, 2; P.L. 2004, ch. 209, 2; P.L. 2015, ch. 243, 1; P.L. 2015, ch. 266, 1.)