TITLE 42
State Affairs and Government

CHAPTER 42-64.13
Rhode Island Regulatory Reform Act

SECTION 42-64.13-7


§ 42-64.13-7. Powers of the office of regulatory reform.

The office of regulatory reform shall have the following powers:

(1) The director of the office of regulatory reform is authorized to intervene or otherwise participate in any regulatory or permitting matter pending before any executive branch agency or department or before any municipal board, commission, agency or subdivision thereof at which a regulatory or permitting matter is pending for the expressed net benefit of a business. The director of the office of regulatory reform may so intervene or otherwise participate in such pending regulatory and permitting matters by providing written notice to the director of any department or state agency in the executive branch, or the chairperson or presiding officer over any municipal department or subdivision thereof at which a regulatory or permitting matter is pending, that the director of the office of regulatory reform is so intervening or otherwise participating in such regulatory or permitting matter pending before such department, agency, board or commission. The director of the office of regulatory reform shall be considered a party to the action and shall be provided reasonable notice of any and all administrative hearings or meetings involving the parties in such matter and shall be the opportunity to participate in such meetings, hearings or other administrative procedures of such entity, of which such opportunity may be waived only by writing from the director of the office of regulatory reform, for the purpose of assuring the efficient and consistent implementation of rules and regulations in order to foster the creation and retention of jobs in Rhode Island or otherwise foster economic development in Rhode Island consistent with the purposes of this act. Any intervention or participation by the director of the office of regulatory reform, other than in contested cases, shall not be deemed to violate the provisions of the Rhode Island administrative procedures act at Title 42, Chapter 35 of the general laws. Provided, however, all contested cases shall be conducted in accordance with the provisions for hearings of contested cases in the administrative procedures act, Title 42, Chapter 35, of the general laws. As used in this section, the term "contested case" means a proceeding in which conflicting rights between adverse parties are required by law to be determined in an adversary proceeding that is judicial or quasi-judicial in nature, and not purely administrative in character, before and/or by an agency.

(2) Promptly upon such intervention as set forth in subdivision (1) above, the director of the office of regulatory reform shall publish its rationale for its intervention in such pending regulatory or permitting matter. The director of the office of regulatory reform may so intervene upon findings that:

(i) That the pending, regulatory or permitting action, in and of itself or as part of a regulatory process, has significant economic development impact upon the state or any municipality herein; and

(ii) The pending regulatory or permitting matter, in and of itself or as part of a regulatory process, has significant impact on any industry, trade, profession or business that provides significant jobs or other significant economic development impact, including municipal and state taxes or other revenues, to the state or its citizens.

(iii) The office of regulatory reform shall upon the conclusion of each fiscal quarter promptly provide to the office of the governor and the general assembly through the offices of the president of the senate and the speaker of the house of representatives a written report identifying:

(A) All matters in which the director of the office of regulatory reform intervened;

(B) The rationale for his or her intervention;

(C) The status of the pending regulatory or permitting matter;

(D) Any observations or recommendations from the director of the office of regulatory reform with respect to such regulatory or permitting policies or procedures relating to the subject matter of such pending regulatory or permitting matters in which the director so intervened; and

(E) The status of the agency rule review required pursuant to subsection 42-35-3.4(d) including the number of rules reviewed within the previous quarter, the number of rules amended or rescinded and the estimated aggregate impact of such amendments or rescissions on businesses in Rhode Island.

(3) The office of regulatory reform is authorized to appear as an amicus curiae in any legal proceeding relating to any matter.

(4) The office of regulatory reform is authorized to coordinate with and support the building commissioner and fire marshal in the development and implementation of a standard statewide process for electronic plan review, permit management and inspection.

(5) The office of regulatory reform is authorized to coordinate, provide technical assistance, and oversee state agency regulatory review and accompanying economic impact statements on small businesses.

History of Section.
(P.L. 2010, ch. 79, § 1; P.L. 2010, ch. 259, § 1; P.L. 2012, ch. 241, art. 4, § 21; P.L. 2012, ch. 445, § 3; P.L. 2013, ch. 252, § 1; P.L. 2013, ch. 438, § 1.)