Wednesday, October 22nd, 2014

Linc-O-Meter

Tracking the promises of Lincoln Chafee

Examine a 1-percent sales tax on items currently exempt from sales tax

"Rather than forcing our property taxes to rise across Rhode Island, we should carefully examine a two-tier sales tax. Other states have this system and it is working."

Make the governor's office the center of planning for development projects

"I will take the lead in driving growth in Rhode Island. I will make the governor’s office the center for planning and marketing exciting new development opportunities in Rhode Island’s key growth centers, especially the 20 acres in Providence’s Jewelry District opened up by the relocation of I-195, the new Station District at T.F. Green Airport in Warwick, Quonset Point Industrial Park in North Kingstown and 30 acres abutting Naval Station Newport next to the Newport Bridge."

Repeal Governor Carcieri's executive order on illegal immigration

"My plan is to make that one of my first acts as governor, to repeal Governor Carcieri's executive order [on immigration]. The whole thing. It just doesn't work, and it's divisive. If it's not the first decision, it will be one of the first."

Make major infrastructure improvements, including super high-speed Internet access

"Clustering our economic development strategy will allow us to create a critical mass for growth. In addition, we can target major infrastructure improvements, such as super high-speed Internet connectivity, that will attract businesses just as traditional transportation systems attract business."

Direct Economic Development Corporation to develop plans for small and medium size businesses

"I will instruct the director of the EDC to develop a small and medium size business service plan within 30 days."

Prefile legislation to make R.I. nation's most "independent worker friendly state"

"I will prefile legislation to make R.I. the most independent worker friendly state in the nation. I will ask the General Assembly to enact an act on legislative initiatives dealing with independent workers in the first 100 days."

Make group health benefits available to independent workers

"I will present legislation that will make group health benefits available to independent workers, as they are in New York."

Stop "dramatic reductions in funding" to state colleges and university

"I will submit a budget proposal to start protecting our higher education assets. We will stop the dramatic reductions in funding to CCRI, Rhode Island College and the University of Rhode Island."

Develop a Middle College program

"I will develop a new Middle College Program. [The program] will give many more students, especially those enrolled in career-oriented trade schools, the opportunity to attain a quality education and full employment."

Hold a budget summit during transition period

"I will hold a budget summit. I will hold a budget summit with all stakeholders within the transition period."

Will audit all economic development tax deals

"I will conduct audits of all economic development tax deals. We need to stop the bleeding of state resources through tax credit programs that have no discernible impact."

Issue executive order on ethics on first day in office

"I will issue a strong executive order on ethics on my first day of office. I will attack the culture of corruption and cronyism that hinders job creation starting on my first day in office. I will demand the highest standards of appropriate behavior. This executive order will designate one individual as the contact person for all state and municipal employees, as well as private citizens, to contact with concerns about unethical behavior involving state and local government."

Reform and redirect loan guarantee fund for economic development

"I will introduce legislation to reform and redirect the $125 million Loan Guarantee Fund."

Direct Economic Development Corporation to develop library for small businesses to help them make business decisions

Chafee has pledged to direct the EDC to “create a library of information to allow small businesses to have access to the same information large businesses have in making business decisions. ... These databases are usually only financially available to large businesses, leaving small businesses at a disadvantage. This approach has doubled the number of jobs and tripled sales tax revenues in similar businesses where it has been implemented."

Upgrade state website to put government services such as obtaining drivers licenses online

"I will upgrade RI.gov to ensure that citizens can take maximum advantage of the public services they pay tax dollars to fund. The upgrade will include putting online government services that currently require a trip to state offices, such as making DMV appointments and renewing drivers’ licenses. This initiative will make online services available for free."

Will make the state procurement process more transparent.

"Government procurement has become synonymous with fraud and inefficiency. I will eradicate this longstanding trend by introducing transparency to the procurement process. Like the federal BetterBuy Project, our administration will offer citizens a way to submit, comment on, and vote on ideas for making our state’s procurement process more effective."

Will create more open and competitive procurement process at the state and municipal levels

My administration will also update the prices in the state’s Master Pricing List and make it accessible to municipalities. This will create a more open and competitive procurement process, resulting in an economy of scale that will benefit taxpayers at both the municipal and state levels.

Will protect people from discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity

Chafee "supports . . . non-discrimination policies and laws, repealing Don't Ask Don't Tell, freedom of gender expression . . "

Expand hate crimes legislation to include sexual orientation and gender identity of victim

Chafee "supports hate crimes legislation in Rhode Island" [which has already been achieved federally and] designed to include feedom of gender expression."

Support same-sex marriage, support repeal of Defense of Marriage Act

"If Chafee were elected governor, he would not only sign marriage equality legislation, but would champion it. In his own words from a 2009 op-ed in the Huffington Post, 'To me, the issue of same-sex marriage boils down to a question of basic fairness ... Rhode Island legislators should follow in the footsteps of our fellow New England states and be true to our pioneering history of tolerance by advancing a marriage equality bill.' "