Once again the Pawtucket Red Sox are under threat of leaving the state. The team is up for sale, its former owner Ben Mondor died four years ago. His widow Madeleine is looking to sell the minor league affiliate of the Boston Red Sox. Joining me to parse out what we know and what we don’t know about the team’s fate, is Rhode Island Public Radio’s Scott MacKay.
With less than a week to go before we welcome 2015, it’s time to reflect upon the stories that informed, entertained and intrigued us most during 2014. These are the sports stories that grabbed my attention.
Rhode Island’s Democratic General Assembly leaders want to exempt pensions and social security from state income taxes. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay wonders if this makes sense in our cash-strapped state government.
House Speaker Nick Mattiello, D-Cranston and Senate President Teresa Paiva Weed, D-Newport, have both said that one of their top priorities when the Assembly convenes in January is legislation that would end income taxes on pensions and social security.
Rhode Islanders of a certain age well remember the `Hi Neighbor, Have a `Gansett’ television advertising campaign that pushed Narragansett Beer, which in days of yore was brewed in Cranston. Now Gina Raimondo is using an old timey Narragansett commercial to tout her campaign for governor.
Rhode Island Superior Court Judge Michael Silverstein has upheld an initial legal settlement in Gov. Lincoln Chafee’s 38 Studios lawsuit over the $75 million state loan guarantee granted to the failed video game company started by Curt Schilling, the former Boston Red Sox pitcher.
In an opinion released this afternoon, Silverstein approved a $4.4 million settlement reached with the Providence law firm of Moses, Alfonso and Ryan, a firm that advised the state on bonds of the ill-fated loan program.
Hockey fans of the Boston Bruins will be able to show their allegiance on their Rhode Island license plates under legislation approved by the General Assembly and signed into law by Gov. Lincoln Chafee.
Under the law, the new Bruins plates will cost hockey devotees an extra $40, half of which will go to the state and half will be allocated to charities affiliated with the Boston Bruins Foundation. The money must be spent on Rhode Island-based charities.
So here’s another report that shows just how badly the General Assembly has fumbled the 38 Studios ball. Gov. Lincoln Chafee has released a financial consultant’s report that shows that it would cost less for the state to pay off the 38 Studios bonds than to default.
The finding, by the firm SJ Advisors, states that Rhode Island’s credit rating would take a significant hit if the state walked away from the $75 million in bond obligations to those who invested retired Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling’s folly, 38 Studios.
It’s been a year since bombs and blood in the streets shattered one of New England’s treasured civic celebrations. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay parses the lessons of the Boston Marathon bombings as this year’s race approaches.
On occasion the best way to pick up Rhode Island political tidbits is to head to Boston, specifically to Fenway Park on the afternoon of the home opener, aka the Big Papi show.
As usual, former Providence Democratic state and devout Sawx fan Rep. Peter Wasylyk was in his seat near the first base line cheering on the team. During a brief conversation, he confirmed that he is going back to the Statehouse to become legal counsel to the new House Majority Leader, Rep. John DeSimone, D-North Providence.
Richard Walton was a huge presence in our small state for more than a half century. A writer, journalist, teacher and political activist, Walton, of Warwick, was a leader in so many campaigns for peace and social justice that even his friends and fellow activists could barely keep count.