PROVIDENCE — State Senate President Dominick J. Ruggerio (D-Dist. 4, North Providence, Providence) recently announced the committee assignments for the Upper Chamber of the General Assembly, …
PROVIDENCE — State Senate President Dominick J. Ruggerio (D-Dist. 4, North Providence, Providence) recently announced the committee assignments for the Upper Chamber of the General Assembly, including those for the two newcomers from East Providence: Robert Britto (D-Dist. 18, East Providence, Pawtucket) and Pamela Lauria (D-Dist. 32, Barrington, Bristol, East Providence).
Britto, a professional in the construction industry and the former three-term East Providence City Councilor from Ward 1, was appointed to serve on the Senate Finance Committee and the Committee on Environment and Agriculture. Britto won the seat the November 2022 General Election, replacing one-term incumbent Cynthia Mendes, who opted to run for lieutenant governor rather than another two-year stay in the state senate.
The Finance Committee handles all matters relating to revenue, appropriations and taxes. The Committee on Environment and Agriculture considers issues relating to the conservation of air, land, water, plants, animals, minerals and other natural resources of the state.
Lauria, of Barrington, has been named to the Committee on Health and Human Services and the Committee on Special Legislation and Veterans’ Affairs.
The Health and Human Services Committee considers legislation and matters dealing with the Departments of Health; Human Services; and Behavioral Healthcare, Developmental Disabilities and Hospitals. It also handles legislation related to public health and welfare, health care, human service access and quality, professional standards of practice and facility standards of care.
The Special Legislation and Veterans’ Affairs Committee hears legislation and matters relating to constitutional amendments, liquor laws, gaming issues, commissions, resolutions, veterans affairs and laws relating to domestic animals.
“I am excited to get to work for the residents of East Providence, Barrington and Bristol. I am hopeful that my experience in healthcare will be useful on the Health and Human Services Committee and look forward to working on policies that increase access, affordability and quality across our healthcare systems. Veterans deserve the best services we can provide and I am eager to work on their behalf,” said Lauria, a primary care nurse practitioner with 25 years of experience.
Lauria, a native of East Providence, won in her maiden run for elected office last fall in the stead of four-term incumbent Cynthia Coyne, the latter deciding to step away for the moment from public service. She is just the third person to hold the majority Barrington seat in the last 30 years. The late David Bates was the state senator from the district from 1992-2014. Coyne was elected upon Bates’ retirement, formally taking the seat when inauguration in January 2015.
Born and raised in Rumford, Lauria (née Fontes) graduated from Bay View in 1988. She later lived in Riverside for four years after getting married, then moved to Barrington where she has resided ever since.
“I have a large family from East Providence, my dad was the youngest of 10,” Lauria added. “I ‘m thrilled to represent my hometown in the state senate. I was raised to believe that it is important to give back to your community. I’m lucky