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Library Resource Guide for: RHODE ISLAND GOVERNMENT INFORMATION

By Branch of Government

This page is designed to explain how the Rhode Island government works specifically in regards to what information it produces that you can use.

Let's start with a basic review of civics. There are three branches of the state government: Legislative , Executive and Judicial. Each one of these branches has its own job to do and produces different information about what it's doing:

  • The Legislative Branch, or the General Assembly, makes the laws through a very laborous process with literally dozens of politicians.
  • The Executive Branch, including the Governor, his Cabinet and agencies, enforces the laws that the Legislative makes through agencies.
  • The Judicial Branch, including the State Supreme Court and other state courts, interprets the law, so, if people are in dispute about what exactly the law means, this branch has the definitive word on meaning.