Every year, when Rhode Island lawmakers start working on a new budget, they face a spending plan mired in red ink. By law, the budget must be balanced by the end of the legislative session, usually in June. But like a boomerang, projected budget deficits zoom back to Smith Hill by the time the new session starts in January. Next year will no different -- Rhode Island already faces the fiscal year starting in July 2014 with an estimated $149 million hole. And the state lacks a plan for overcoming budget deficits that are projected to get far worse with time.
Former Secretary of State and public television executive Susan Farmer has died after a long fight with cancer.
Farmer became the first woman elected to statewide office when she won an election for secretary of state in 1982. Former Providence Journal political columnist M. Charles Bakst said Farmer was the leader in a wave of GOP women winning political office.
General Treasurer Gina Raimondo joins Political Roundtable this week to discuss 2014; the health of the state pension plan; her views on boosting Rhode Island's economy; and whether adding table games is the best way for the state to protect one of its largest revenue sources.
An educator who works in Central Falls has decided not to run for mayor of Providence. The decision by Victor Capellan leaves the field with just one Latino candidate.
Capellan is a longtime political activist who took steps to organize a campaign earlier this year. He said the demands of his job as a deputy school superintendent in Central Falls are why he’s pulling out of the race.
Central Falls Mayor James Diossa won’t have any competition when he seeks re-election this fall. Diossa won election last year as the first Latino mayor in the predominantly minority city.
Diossa will have a clean shot to win a three-year term when Central Falls voters go to the polls in November. The 28-year-old mayor says he’s humbled by what he calls a vote of confidence in his leadership.
Lt Governor Elizabeth Roberts says the governor’s decision not to seek re-election in no way changes her political plans. Due to term limits, she cannot seek re-election for Lt Governor.
Roberts says right now she’s focused on rolling out the state’s health insurance exchange, and while she understands she’s next in line should Governor Lincoln Chafee leave office, she’s focused now on the exchange.