May 5, 2021

Senator Cynthia Mendes (D-District 18) sets new focus on climate based and environmental legislation for the state of Rhode Island

Posted by AshleyHayford

STATE HOUSE - Senator Cynthia Mendes (D-Dist. 18, East Providence, Pawtucket) and colleagues have recently passed the 2021 Act on Climate (on a 33-4 vote), a major climate and environmental bill, in the Rhode Island Senate on Tuesday, March 16.

The Act on Climate Bill acts as an update to Rhode Island’s 7-year-old Resilient Rhode Island Act. Specifically, the bill alters the state’s current emission-reduction targets to fit present scientific standards, refines transparency, and adjusts the climate goal timeline to be met within the next 30 years.

At present, Sen. Mendes is introducing the following legislation:

  • Environmental Justice Focus Areas - This act would establish environmental justice focus areas and coastal zones and establish procedures for the investigation and remediation of contaminated sites within the coastal zones under the direction of the Department of Environmental Management (DEM) with increased community participation.

And is co-sponsoring the following Rescue Rhode Island legislation:

  • S 0540 - The Green Justice Zone Act. This act would establish the first Green Justice Zone, a model that may be replicated in future years to ensure that all communities throughout the state have clean air and clean water.
  • S 0219 - Housing Construction. This act creates the Housing Jobs Department and a series of other initiatives designed to create jobs in housing construction, specifically affordable and low-income housing, green and solar energy jobs, and programs for low income individuals.
  • S 0468 - The Agricultural Bureau Act. This act would establish an agriculture jobs bureau, a regenerative agricultural program, a garden agricultural program, a community agricultural program, and permit community cooperatives. Each program or person participating would be entitled to apply for grants of up to seventy five thousand dollars ($75,000). These programs would be overseen by a bureau chief who would have broad powers to enter into contracts, spend money, award the grants, and recover grant money or goods if a participant violates any rules of the programs. This act would also establish the ecosystem restoration act which broadens the powers of the division of parks and recreation to seize lands for purposes of promoting ecosystem restoration.

Please expect information regarding Earth Day, covid-safe and friendly clean up events, led by Senator Mendes’ office, in both the areas of East Providence on Saturday, April 24th and Pawtucket on Sunday, April 25th.

Please follow Senator Mendes’ official pages for updates:

Twitter: @RISenMendes
Facebook: @SenatorCynthiaMendes

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