Government

Uprise RI Officially Launches BillBuddy Legislation Engagement Tool

Today, we launched BillBuddy to the general public. BillBuddy is an exciting new tool that makes understanding RI state legislation and acting on it, regardless of your political views, easy and straightforward.

January 3, 2024, 9:42 am

By Uprise RI Staff

Today Uprise RI officially launched BillBuddy, an innovative voter engagement tool designed to empower Rhode Islanders with clear, unbiased insights into state legislation. The tool is now live at UpriseRI.com/bb and offers Rhode Islanders the unique opportunity to understand legislative proposals in straightforward terms, regardless of their political stance.

As the 2024 legislative session unfolds, BillBuddy serves as a bridge between the public and the complex world of law-making. BillBuddy allows users to easily look up any bill by number and receive a plain language summary explaining objectively what the bill would do. Each summary includes easy to understand pros and cons from both progressive and conservative perspectives, providing a complete look at the potential impacts of the legislation.

As with Uprise RI’s RI Rank platform, BillBuddy omits party affiliations and bill sponsors from its summaries, focusing solely on the content and implications of the legislation. “Our goal is to move past party biases and focus on the essence of each bill,” explains Uprise RI President, Greg Brailsford. “We believe that a bill’s merit should stand on its own, independent of its sponsor.”

In an era of increasing political polarization, BillBuddy endeavors to bridge divides by presenting both sides of the argument. “Understanding the other side is crucial in finding common ground,” says Brailsford. “BillBuddy is our contribution towards fostering a more informed, empathetic, and engaged electorate.”

“The launch of BillBuddy is a game-changer for voter engagement in Rhode Island. Our aim is to demystify legislation, making it accessible to everyone. We encourage skeptics to try BillBuddy and experience its neutrality and utility firsthand,” added Brailsford.

One of the most exciting features of BillBuddy is the direct line it offers to local legislators. With a simple click on either ‘Support’ or ‘Oppose’, registered users can convey their stance, with an explanation, straight to their State Senator or Representative. This feature ensures that the voices of Rhode Islanders are heard clearly and directly in the legislative process.

BillBuddy also offers a unique “child” summary option which explains any bill in language more suited for an elementary-school child to understand. Additionally, bill summaries are available in Spanish and Portuguese.

BillBuddy is now available to the general public. Rhode Islanders are invited to explore this new tool, sign up for personalized bill alerts, and join a growing community of engaged voters.

For more information on BillBuddy, to explore sample bill summaries, or to sign up, visit Uprise RI’s BillBuddy page.