Posted by: Providence Chamber of Commerce | January 26, 2012

Legislators address Session hot topics at Annual Legislative Luncheon

Raising taxes needs to be a last resort. For effective economic development, Rhode Island needs to have a simple and predictable tax code. 

That was the sentiment echoed by leaders of the Rhode Island House and Senate to a crowd of close to 650 at the Chamber’s Legislative Luncheon held today at the Rhode Island Convention Center. Participating in the discussion were President of the Senate M. Teresa Paiva Weed; Speaker of the House Gordon Fox; House Majority Leader Nicholas Mattiello; Senate Majority Leader Dominick Ruggerio; House Minority Leader Brian Newberry; and Senate Minority Leader Dennis Algiere.

Another key topic during the conversation moderated by Chamber President Laurie White– municipal pension reform. Both Senate President Teresa Paiva Weed and House Speaker Gordon Fox said they are working with local municipalities to aid them in addressing their issues, but cautioned it’s not something that is likely to be fixed legislatively. 

In addressing the addition of casino table games to Twin River and Newport Grand, Fox said the process will be “transparent” and will certainly “weight and balance” the needs of the state economy, and those services that are funded by Rhode Island’s current gaming structure.

Other topics discussed: effective development of the land made available by the relocation of Route 195, development of Quonset Point and regulatory reform.

Leaders from both the House and Senate also urged members of the audience to get engaged in the process by contacting their local representative and senator on issues important to them, and their businesses.  An idea also championed by Jon Duffy, Chair of theChamber’s Board of Directors who eluded to a new online advocacy tool for members which will be launched in the coming week.

Thank you to all that participated in today’s program.

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