Introduced By: Representatives Hetherington, Williams, Coderre, Burlingame and Lopes
Date Introduced : May 20, 1998
RESOLVED, That a special house commission be and the same is hereby created consisting of twenty-three (23) members: three (3) of whom shall be from the house of representatives, not more than two (2) from the same political party to be appointed by the speaker; two (2) of whom shall be adult education teachers, to be appointed by the Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education; one (1) of whom shall be the Commissioner of Higher Education, or designee; one (1) of whom shall be the director of the Department of Health, or designee; one (1) of whom shall be the director of the Department of Labor and Training, or designee; one (1) of whom shall be the director of the Department of Human Services, or designee; one (1) of whom shall be a member of the Adult Literacy Council, to be appointed by the speaker; three (3) of whom shall be adults with learning disabilities, including one (1) member of the hard of hearing community recommended by the Commission on Deaf and Hard of Hearing, all of whom shall be appointed by the speaker; one (1) of whom shall be a representative from the Governor's Commission on Disabilities, to be appointed by the commission chair; two (2) of whom shall be members of the medical community, to be appointed by the president of the Rhode Island Medical Society; one (1) of whom shall be a representative of the Rhode Island Public Expenditure Council, to be appointed by the Chair; two (2) of whom shall be learning disability specialists, to be appointed by the speaker; three (3) of whom shall be representatives from adult education centers, to be appointed by the speaker; and one (1) of whom shall be a member of the Rhode Island Association of Children and Adults with Learning Disabilities, to be appointed by the association president.
For the purposes of this resolution, "learning disability" means a disorder in one or more of the basic psychological processes involved in understanding or in using language, spoken or written, that may manifest itself in an imperfect ability to listen, think, speak, read, write, spell, or to do mathematical calculations. The term includes such conditions as perceptual disabilities, brain injury, minimal brain dysfunction, dyslexia, and developmental aphasia. The term does not apply to children who have learning problems that are primarily the result of visual, hearing, or motor disabilities, of mental retardation, of emotional disturbance, or of environmental, cultural, or economic disadvantage.
In lieu of any appointment of a member of the legislature to a permanent advisory commission, a legislative study commission, or any commission created by a general assembly resolution, the appointing authority may appoint a member of the general public to serve in lieu of a legislator, provided that the majority leader or the minority leader of the political party which is entitled to the appointment consents to the appointment of the member of the general public.
The purpose of said commission shall be to examine existing policies and resources relative to adults with learning disabilities; to explore the benefits of diagnostic testing and use of appropriate accommodations on the employment and training of adults with learning disabilities; to assess the impact of diagnostic testing and the use of appropriate accommodations on the success of students enrolled in adult education programs, and post-secondary education; access to vocational rehabilitation services; and to develop recommendations for changes in existing policies as appropriate.
Forthwith upon passage of this resolution, the members of the commission shall meet at the call of the speaker of the house and organize and shall select from among the legislators a chairperson. Vacancies in said commission shall be filled in like manner as the original appointment.
The membership of said commission shall receive no compensation for their services.
All departments and agencies of the state shall furnish such advice and information, documentary and otherwise, to said commission and its agents as is deemed necessary or desirable by the commission to facilitate the purposes of this resolution.
The speaker of the house is hereby authorized and directed to provide suitable quarters for said commission: and be it further
RESOLVED, That the commission shall report its findings and recommendations to the house of representatives on or before May 14, 1999 and said commission shall expire on July 14, 1999.