Sen. Coyne to Chair Senate Judiciary Committee
STATE HOUSE – Sen. Cynthia A. Coyne will serve as chairwoman of the Senate Judiciary Committee when the 2021 legislative session begins, Senate President Dominick J. Ruggerio has announced.
Senator Coyne, a Democrat who represents District 32 in Barrington, Bristol and East Providence, has served as a senator since 2015. She has been a member of the Judiciary Committee since her second term began in 2017.
Senator Coyne is a former Rhode Island State Trooper who rose through the ranks to Lieutenant before retiring in 2006. She serves as a commissioner on the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies.
“It is a tremendous honor to be given this new responsibility on the Senate Judiciary Committee,” said Senator Coyne. “Our committee handles multifaceted matters that have tremendous impacts on people’s lives. Many of the issues before us are the ones that draw hundreds of Rhode Islanders to hearings, many with gripping personal stories, and each with passionate opinions about the way these concerns should be handled. I understand how important it is that our committee truly listens to them with an open mind. It’s hard work to identify common ground in many of these issues, and at all times we have to remain dedicated to creating laws that bring about real justice and better, safer lives for Rhode Islanders. I look forward to this new role and once again doing this hard and important work with my colleagues on the Judiciary Committee,” said Senator Coyne.
The Senate Judiciary Committee handles all legislation and matters that affect the penal code, judicial system, ethics, open meetings, access to public records and election laws. The committee is also responsible for advice and consent hearings for all judges appointed by the governor. It is one of the busiest legislative committees, whose hearings on high-profile legislation sometimes stretch hours into the night.