Sen. Felag reintroduces bill to end practice of ‘budget scoops’ from quasi-public corporations
STATE HOUSE – Sen. Walter S. Felag (D-Dist. 10, Warren, Bristol, Tiverton) has reintroduced legislation (2019-S 0120) that would end the practice of “scooping” money from the budgets of the state’s quasi-public corporations, such as the Narragansett Bay Commission, for the purpose of balancing the state budget.
Specifically, Senator Felag’s legislation mandates that quasi-public corporations limit the use of all funds and property to only perform the function or service for which the quasi-public corporation was created. The legislation also prohibits the transfer or reallocation of funds held by a quasi-public corporation.
“This practice of ‘scooping’ money out of our quasi-public corporations not only hurts the mission and capability of these groups, but more importantly, it is not a responsible or sustainable way of crafting our state budget. One time budget fixes and gimmicks do nothing to responsibly address the anticipated and current budget shortfalls. These types of transfers are unfavorable accounting practices because it not only propels the state budget into a larger deficit the following year but will cause the quasi-public corporation to increase their fees or pay higher borrowing costs," said Senator Felag.
Some of the proposed scoops that the governor has proposed in her budget proposal include $5 million from the Resource Recovery Corporation, $2.5 million from Rhode Island Housing, $2 million from the Quonset Development Corporation, and $1.5 million from the Rhode Island Student Loan Authority.
For more information, contact:
Andrew Caruolo, Publicist
State House Room 20
Providence, RI 02903