A new law will create a permanent state commission aimed at helping attract national and international sailing events to the state.
The law passed last month and signed Thursday by Democratic Gov. Gina Raimondo creates the Rhode Island Sailing Events Commission.
The panel is expected to identify, evaluate and provide recommendations to assist nationally and internationally recognized sailing and marine events. It will also advise state and local leaders on the practicality of hosting qualified marine events in Rhode Island.
Co-sponsor Rep. Kenneth Marshall, a Democrat, names the Volvo Ocean Race's 2015 stopover in Newport as one of many successful sailing events that have taken place in the state. A report commissioned by Sail Newport estimated the race's economic impact at more than $47 million.