The city outlines the bills passed up on Smith Hill which will help close the municipal deficit and more:
Among the measures in the state’s FY12 budget that will help Providence close a $110 million structural budget deficit is an article that allows the City to shift the cost of retiree health care to Medicare for those who are eligible, saving the City up to $11.6 million per year and tackling the City’s $1.5 billion unfunded health care liability. Providence will also receive nearly $3.9 million of an additional $5.5 million in PILOT payments in FY12.
In addition to the State budget, several pieces of legislation were passed which support Providence:
- Rep. J. Patrick O’Neill and Sen. Harold Metts passed a bill that will save the City $1.2 million by shifting the costs of fire hydrants from the property taxpayers to the ratepayers to ensure that tax-exempt institutions pay for fire hydrants as well.
- Rep. Edith Ajello and Sen. Juan Pichardo passed another bill that will generate approximately $1 million in revenue for the City by assessing a user fee on those plugging into the City’s master alarm fire box system.
- Senate Majority Leader Ruggerio and Rep. Carnevale passed legislation that will formalize the collaboration between the City, the General Assembly and the Governor’s Office on the development of land freed up by the relocation of Route 195. The bill was amended several times to reflect the important concerns of the City of Providence and its stakeholders, and the amended legislation satisfies several important guiding principles for the City in regards to the I-195 land and the development of the Knowledge District.
- Sen. Pichardo and Rep. Leo Medina passed a bill that will allow the City and the State to negotiate for the State to plow more state roads in the City of Providence, saving money in the Department of Public Works’ plowing budget.
- Rep. John J. McCauley, Jr. and Sen. Frank Ciccone passed a bill that allows the Providence Community Library access to a large reference library contract that only the Providence Public Library could previously access.
- Sen. Metts and Rep. Christopher Blazejewski passed a bill that gives the Board of Licenses the power to take away under 21 nights at clubs if they violate City laws, as well as to ensure that all clubs pay their police details in a timely fashion.
- Sen. Goodwin and Rep. Anastasia Williams passed a bill that will allow the City to only charge interest on the late payment of taxes, instead of the full amount, thus creating a fairer system for property taxpayers.
- And Rep. Williams and Sen. Paul Jabour passed a bill that allows the City to leverage federal funds to create a lead court to protect children and families from the dangers of lead poisoning.