general assembly

The month of May is here, bringing a heightened focus on Gina Raimondo's proposed budget and the PawSox proposal. So thanks for stopping by, and feel free to share your tips & thoughts at idonnis (at) ripr (dot) org, and to follow me on the twitters. Here we go.

The owner of the Victory Place parcel near Davol Square, JAG Investment Realty, on Tuesday suggested the site as an alternative location for creating a stadium for the Pawtucket Red Sox.

Ian Donnis / RIPR

In a letter sent Saturday, the Pawtucket Red Sox' new ownership requests a meeting with Governor Gina Raimondo "to consider various alternatives and explore ways to accomplish our mutual objective" of keeping the PawSox in Rhode Island with a Providence stadium, "including the possible purchase of the state land for the ballpark."

Thanks for stopping by for my weekly column. Lots of pots cooking, so we'll keep the formalities short. Your tips and comments are always welcome at idonnis (at) ripr (dot) org, and you can follow me 24/7 on the twitters. Here we go.

Ian Donnis/File Photo / RIPR

House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello joins Political Roundtable this week to discuss the Pawtucket Red Sox' request for $120 million in state lease payments over 30 years; Twin River's proposal to establish a casino in Tiverton; and some of the major changes he foresees for Governor Gina Raimondo's budget proposal.

You can hear more of our conversation with Speaker Mattiello on Bonus Q+A.

House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello joins Bonus Q+A to discuss the PawSox' proposal for a Providence stadium; state efforts to curb Medicaid spending; the state of ethics reform at the Statehouse; and much more.

You can hear more of our conversation with Speaker Mattiello on Political Roundtable.

Ian Donnis/File Photo / RIPR

House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello wants to eliminate the "Taylor Swift tax"  -- Governor Gina Raimondo's proposed statewide property tax on vacation homes worth more than $1 million.

"I'm hoping that the revenues are there to eliminate that," Mattiello said during a taping Thursday of Rhode Island Public Radio's Political Roundtable. "You could look to see that eliminated. I agree with the public sentiment that you don't open the door to a new tax, because it's just going to expand in the future, so that's something that I'm really looking to eliminate."

Ian Donnis / RIPR

An 11-year-old Newport girl, Khatima Bulmer, got VIP access to the corridors of power at the Statehouse as the state’s governor for a day on Wednesday.

Bulmer got the distinction by winning an essay contest organized by the Ocean State’s first female governor, Gina Raimondo.

Ian Donnis / RIPR

The parent company of Twin River proposed Tuesday, in essence, to relocate Newport Grand's video lottery terminals to a new location in Tiverton, close to the border with Fall River, Massachusetts, while adding 30 to 40 table games at the new site.

After two snow-packed months, the apparent settling of the pension conflict, and Lincoln Chafee's surprising emergence as a possible presidential hopeful, Rhode Island confronts a sharp debate involving baseball, public dollars, and the future of the state. No pressure, right? Thanks, as always, for stopping by for my weekly column. Feel free to drop me a line at idonnis (at) ripr (dot) org, and to follow me on the twitters. Here we go.

John Bender / RIPR

Governor Gina Raimondo marked her 100th day in office Thursday. Raimondo is taking part in several events to mark the occasion.


Along with two other appearances, Governor Raimondo is celebrating the 100th anniversary of two northern Rhode Island businesses, Yacht Club Soda and Navigant Credit Union.

Raimondo won election in November as the state’s first female governor. Since taking office, she’s dealt with severe winter weather and touted her proposed budget as a way to revitalize Rhode Island’s economy.

RI Commerce Secretary Stefan Pryor joins Bonus Q&A this week to discuss the PawSox' pitch for a Providence stadium, efforts to boost economic development in Rhode Island, and much more.

The debate over the Pawtucket Red Sox and a public subsidy to help keep the team in Rhode Island began in earnest Wednesday as PawSox ownership unveiled their much-anticipated plan for a $70 million ballpark next to the Providence River. According to the proposal, a 30-year lease/sublease agreement would have a net cost to the state of about $2 million a year.

PawSox ownership said its proposal does not include issuing any bonds or public debt, and that the team will pay for the full cost of the design and construction of its envisioned 10,000 seat ballpark.

Expect the unexpected in Rhode Island politics, right? Thanks for stopping by for my weekly column. Your tips and thoughts are always welcome (idonnis at ripr dot org), and feel free to follow me on the twitters. Here we go.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

State Police are raising concerns about the state’s medical marijuana program. At issue is the role of caregivers, who are licensed by the state to grow a small number of plants for medical marijuana patients.

Rhode Island State Police spokesman Major Kevin O’Brien says last year police searched the homes of 21 caregivers. More than three-quarters of them were growing more marijuana than the law allows.