1. Rhode Island General Laws Title 44 Taxation 44-3-3 Property exempt.   Manufacturers are exempt from property tax as noted in 44-3-3.  The Town of Cumberland’s tax assessor has decided to tax a manufacturer because he notes that the equipment is on a lease.  RIMA has taken action by submitting new verbiage in the State Statue that our CPA firm and RISCPA tax head feels will rectify this concern going forward.

2. TCI RIMA will be opposing this tax increase in our gas prices.  This is no more than an end around on the carbon tax.  The impact on the cost to our members and their employee’s will be costly.  In addition, we have been informed that this will produce an additional emissions reduction of 1-6 percentage points on top of a presumed reduction of 19%.  TCI would extract $56 billion from motor fuel users to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by a little more than 5% over 10 years.

3. RiteShare:  Offensive over the top burden to business.  The system is not computerized.  The data/information requirements are a time consuming matter and burden to companies who do not have HR departments.  RIMA has put together a point by point issues on this proposal.  The penalty fees for a 52 person company is the same for a 1000 person company.  RIMA will be discussing with the Administration but is currently opposed to this program

4. 7% IT Tax:  RIMA is not in favor of this as the business community continually is being hit with tax revenue ideas.  This tax or cost will be passed on to our businesses and private sector.

5. Tangible Tax/Commerce:  RIMA did a survey for Commerce and found that a reduction to 2.5% would vary from a savings of $200.00 small manufacturer to $30,000 for a larger manufacturer. The structure of this program needs to be further discussed and seems un-attainable in light of the very tight budget presented this year.

6. Real Jobs: RIMA will be supporting the funding of the program. It has been a major help to finding new employee’s but also a pipeline for hiring individuals to prepare for retiring CNC operators/setup personnel.  RIMA did a survey of it’s members and found that on average each company had 33% of their work force at age 55+.

7. Davies Vocational:  $500,000 in budget for engineering design for potential renovation.  A future bond for a revamping of the schools is possible in the future. The Governor has indicated that she would put in $4.5million next year for the project.

8. Minimum Wage Legislation:  RIMA expressed concerns on the increase but asked that the increase be reviewed on an annual basis and not tied to automatic increases each year.  RIMA also asked that the implementation date be noted as of 01/01/2021. The implementation date was not adjusted for the first time.  The past seven increases were all calculated to stated as of a 01/01 date.

9. Polaris:  RIMA is in support of increased funding for Polaris. RIMA and Polaris have partnered successfully over the last two years to bring various programs and support to the manufacturing community.

10. RIMA continues to level the playing field on various programs that only C-corps can participate in.  The majority of manufacturers in Rhode Island are either S-corps or LLC’s.  We therefore have respectfully requested that those statues that limit our S-corps and LLC’s be changed to include the pass through corporations as well.

11. RIMA, CCRI and Dept. of Corrections have embarked on a manufacturing training program.  The intent is to achieve success of training 10-15 inmates to learn the basics of CNC-machining.  We would advise these inmates on the advantages of learning this trade, the benefits available, the pay scale and the pride of making precision components.  The Governor has submitted $250,000 dollars in her budget to start the first of what we hope to be many classes.  The success of this program will also drive other potential training programs such as Quality Control, Shipping/Receiving training, Customer service and other ideas in the works.

12. RIMA continues to offer their “Travelling Manufacturing Road Show” to all 39 cities and towns.  We would co-ordinate a program to address the many programs offered by Commerce-RI, Dept. of Labor and Training, Governor’s Workforce Board, Dept. of Business Regulations and Polaris.  It is our intent to educate our manufacturers in all 39 cities and towns of what is available to help them run their operations.