Header, the Administration of the Honorable Lincoln C. Almond
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  2002 Signature
2002 Veto
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July 7, 1997


In accordance with R.I. Gen. Laws § 43-1-4, I am transmitting herewith, with my disapproval, 97-S 553, Substitute A, As Amended, "An Act Relating to Law Enforcement Officers1 Bill of Rights."

This legislation subjects all municipalities to grievance procedures by law enforcement officers for minor disciplinary suspensions of two days or less.

A suspension of up to two days could result in several days of adjudicative proceedings involving significant costs and loss of productivity for the affected departments. As such, this Act would unduly restrain the legitimate management prerogative to utilize such suspensions.

If a municipal entity is to provide lengthy appeals of short-term suspensions, that matter is more properly addressed in the collective bargaining process not by legislative fiat. Because this Act interferes with the rights of local governments to effectively manage their police departments, the League of Cities and Towns opposes this legislation as do several local police departments. In addition to creating substantial administrative and legal expenses for local communities, this proposal could generate insubstantial grievances which would interfere with the effective administration of significant grievances and important employment issues.

For the foregoing reasons, I disapprove of this legislation and respectfully urge your support of this veto.


Lincoln Almond