As the major issues of the 2022 legislative session begin to take shape, RIPEC brings you a brief update on public policy developments in the Ocean State.
RIPEC on Public Policy
- RIPEC released its annual “How Rhode Island Compares” report analyzing Rhode Island’s state & local revenues and expenditures compared to New England and the U.S. “As state policymakers grapple with where to invest an influx of federal funds and craft a state budget, How Rhode Island Compares can be particularly helpful in highlighting areas where Rhode Island needs to invest and where we need to constrain spending in the long term,” said Michael DiBiase, President and CEO of RIPEC.
- Providence Business News, “RIPEC: R.I. total spending grew 16.1% from FY14-19“
- Michael DiBiase testified before the House and Senate finance committees to advocate for tangible property tax reform, a key recommendation from RIPEC’s recent report on property taxation. In his testimony, DiBiase wrote that lawmakers should not only support the governor’s proposal to enable local governments to adopt tangible property tax exemptions, but should consider requiring exemptions on tangible property below a certain level of assessed value or a gradual phase-out of the tangible tax, “which carries significant administrative burdens for both businesses and tax assessors.”
- RIPEC announced that it will host a gubernatorial forum on May 5 featuring the declared candidates. WPRI investigative reporter Steph Machado will moderate the discussion, which will focus on taxation and spending policies, as well as the additional federal funds coming into the Ocean State.
- Rising gas prices have spurred calls at the federal and state levels for a suspension of the gas tax but doing so could worsen inflation and raise concerns about supply, according to the Tax Foundation.
- A Pew analysis shows that wage growth in the private sector exceeded that of the public sector by a record high margin in Q4 2021, suggesting that states will need to compete for workers with higher wages to address staffing shortages.
What to Look for in March
- RIPEC will publish an analysis of the governor’s FY 2023 budget proposal and the state’s fiscal outlook.
- RIPEC will continue its participation in legislative study commissions on tax exempt properties and on the delivery of health and human services. The latter is expected to release recommendations in March.