How to make an impact on regulatory reform

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By December 31, 2018, every state agency, commission, and board with rulemaking authority must re-write their regulations into a new format known as the RI Code of Regulations (RICR). Any regulations not submitted in the new format by January 1, 2019, will no longer be enforceable. The Office of Regulatory Reform (ORR) and Secretary of State’s Office are coordinating this codification and review effort across state government.

What does that mean for your agency?

As the state reviews every regulation, non-profit sector and community members have an opportunity to participate in rulemaking through public comment periods. This gives the community a chance to influence how state agencies, commissions, and boards operate and relate to our work and our communities. It may be tedious work to follow and make comments on regulations and rules, but it is often the regulatory and rules structure that impacts our community-based work, sometimes more than legislation. It is worth coordinating with each other and engaging in this process to ensure that the rules and regulations governing our state entities make sense for our communities! 

Here’s how to get involved:

To learn about the regulatory process itself, visit the Secretary of State’s Office website here; or, you can visit the Office of Regulatory Reform’s website via the Office of Management and Budget here.

You can sign up to get updates on regulations open for public comment here. When you sign up, you will receive an email when the agency, board, or commission that you are following has submitted a regulation or rule for review. With that regulation/rule will come a public notice that informs you on how to submit public comments on that regulation/rule. You will have 30 days to respond.

If you have comments that go beyond what the public comment form allows, you can file comments directly with the ORR analyst in charge of that agency/board/commission. The list of officers and their assigned entities is located here.

To obtain certified copies of rules and regulations filed by a state agency, board or commission, please contact the Secretary of State’s Office at (401) 222-2473.

If you have any questions about this process, please feel free to contact Amy Greer, Project Manager, Research and Data, at (401) 444-0616 or the ORR Analyst overseeing the particular agency with which you are concerned.

I hope you will get involved and help make our great state even greater!


Written by: Amy Greer, Ph.D., Project Manager, Research and Data