A settlement that could end a legal dispute over the 2011 overhaul of the state pension system is expected to be unveiled Friday. The deal appears back on track after hitting a snag earlier this week.
The federal mediation service that has overseen more than a year of closed-door pension talks is set to hold a news conference (4:15 pm) at a state building near the Statehouse. The subject is expected to be a proposed settlement between the state and a series of public-employee unions.
Democratic gubernatorial candidate Clay Pell joins Political Roundtable this week to discuss the dispute over the state pension overhaul of 2011; his campaign for governor; the new Providence Journal-WPRI poll; and more.
Providence Mayor Angel Taveras used his final State of the City address to say Rhode Island’s capital is in better condition than when he took office in 2011. Taveras is part of a three-way Democratic field for governor.
Taveras says a small surplus has replaced the 110 million dollar deficit he inherited upon taking office. He says his administration has bolstered startups, improved graduation rates, and cut the waiting term for permits from City Hall. Taveras called that a decided improvement after he inherited a city facing possible bankruptcy.
Campaign managers of the three main democrats running for governor met Monday to start hammering out a pledge to limit outside spending in the race. John Marion, president of the good government group, Common Cause, facilitated the two-hour meeting.
The so-called People’s Pledge made headlines in the Massachusetts senate race between Scott Brown and Elizabeth Warren. In that race the candidates agreed to discourage outside spending on TV, radio and the internet, but not direct mail.
Campaign finance records show that gun-rights supporters were outspent during the recall of four Exeter town council members back in December.
Back in December there was a special election to recall four Exeter town council members for their support of a move to take gun permitting out of the hands of the town clerk and let the attorney general’s office do the permitting.
Speculation continues about whether a settlement will emerge from closed-door pension mediation as soon as next week.
The head of the Rhode Island League of Cities and Towns, Daniel Beardsley, is worried that a settlement could hike pension costs for communities by more than $100 million. The league outlines its concerns in a new white paper. But as Beardsley says, it remains unclear if the General Assembly will be receptive to approving a settlement.
A leading Rhode Island Republican is calling on GOP voters to keep an open mind about their two choices in this year’s primary.
By using his Facebook page, former gubernatorial candidate John Robitaille is urging GOP voters to focus on deciding whether Allan Fung or Ken Block has the best plan for moving Rhode Island forward. He says the candidates’ courage and personal authenticity are more important than internal politics within the state Republican Party.