The Rhode Island Open Meetings Act dictates the way in which public meetings are conducted and the Access to Public Records Act (APRA) ensures the access to open public records. The APRA was first enacted in 1979 and revised in 1991, 1998 and 2008. Rhode Island was the forty-ninth state to enact a state law guaranteeing access to public records. Rhode Island has set up the Open Government Unit to investigate violations of the Open Meetings Act and the APRA. There are, however, exemptions defined in the law to protect from disclosure when a persons personal privacy would be invaded without warrant. Rhode Island was the first colony to declare independence from British rule on May 4, 1776. However, Rhode Island was the last state to ratify the United States constitution, and it became the 13th state of the Union on May 29, 1790. Rhode Island is the smallest state by area in the United States. It has 5 counties, 8 cities and 31 towns. The Bureau of Criminal Investigations under the office of the Attorney General allows access to criminal history records. Search quickly and accurately for Rhode Island public records. Solicit all levels of Rhode Island government and their sites for services and public information. Useful links to vital, court and criminal records, as well as current news and crime reports. See Rhode Island crime statistics, census data, housing and economy information. Find criteria about the state's residents, education, income and payrolls. Also explore current real estate data, property and land values. Read about Rhode Island's business demographics and look up taxes by county. Check back regularly as new resources and data are added to this site.
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