Tinted-windows bill aimed at protecting legislators, law enforcement


PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) ─ A Providence lawmaker is introducing legislation that would allow legislators and law enforcement to get tint on all of their vehicle’s windows.

Rep. Anastasia Williams, D-Providence, said the current law does not allow any Rhode Islander to completely darken their front windows or windshield with a tint. Rhode Island law states most car windows must allow 70% of light inside.

Williams argues that because of how tense the political climate has been, legislators, firefighters, judges and law enforcement officers should be exempt from that law.

She said safety in their personal life needs to be taken into account.

“It calls for it to be tinted enough that where you look, you can see someone, but you can’t necessarily make out who that someone is,” Williams said.

Williams used examples of when she’s been approached by disgruntled constituents following tense debates at the State House.

“It’s about realistically looking at the type of work that we do and looking at how society and how things have changed,” Williams explained.

Robert Anatone, owner of Providence Tint, said he’s not in support of the bill.

“I don’t understand why they would be allowed to have it and regular citizens would not,” Anatone said.

He said in Massachusetts, the law mandates just 35% of light be let inside the vehicle, adding that Rhode Island should keep it consistent with other states.

Williams said she wants to protect legislators and other exempt individuals from a potentially dangerous situation.

“Rhode Island is very well known for after the fact,” Williams said. “We react. Let’s be proactive.”

Williams said the bill will not mandate the change, but will instead leave it up to those exempt on whether or not to tint their car windows.

The bill was recently sent to the House Judiciary Committee. A spokesperson for House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello said at this point, he will assess the bill and public’s testimony.

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