Rhode Island

Energy
9:12 am
Thu November 20, 2014

Deepwater Wind Set To Begin Construction Of Block Island Wind Farm

A wind turbine in Portsmouth; the Deepwater Wind project would be the state's first offshore farm.
Credit RIPR FILE

More approvals rolled in this week for the five-turbine wind farm Deepwater Wind.  And  the company says it has secured the last of its permits for the offshore wind farm planned for three miles off the coast of Block Island.  Construction is set to start next year.

The Coastal Resources Management Council has approved the lease agreement for the underwater land on which the wind farm will sit. The lease took effect earlier this month and will be valid for 25 years from the wind farm’s start date.

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Theater Reviews
4:47 pm
Wed November 19, 2014

Trinity Rep’s "A Christmas Carol" Is Filled With Joy And Seriousness

The full cast of A Christmas Carol at Trinity Rep.
Credit Mark Turek / Trinity Rep

Way back in 1843 when Charles Dickens' “A Christmas Carol” was published in London one reviewer called it “. . . a dainty dish to put before a king.” Well, Bill Gale is not entering hyperbole land quite that much. But he does say that this year's on-stage version at Trinity Rep is a winner.

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Housing
9:12 am
Wed November 19, 2014

$2M In Federal Funds Coming To RI For Affordable Housing

Affordable housing in Cranston. Rhode Island received $2M in federal funding to refurbish and build more in the state.
Credit RIPR FILE

Rhode Island Housing says it has awarded more than $2 million in federal HOME funds for affordable housing across the state.

In total, the money will help build or spruce up 145 affordable homes and apartments. Projects include fixing up Apple Creek Apartments in Tiverton, building a single-family home in South County, and building seven homes in Burrillville for low-income families. Each year, the state receives about $3 million in federal HOME grants.

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Energy
8:26 am
Wed November 19, 2014

Major Step Forward For RI's Offshore Wind Farm

Wind turbine at the Port of Providence, currently there are no offshore turbines in Rhode Island.
Credit Catherine Welch / RIPR

Federal regulators have cleared the way for a transmission cable linking Block Island to Rhode Island’s mainland.  It's big step forward for Deepwater Wind’s offshore wind farm.  

The decision for the “right-of-way grant” marks a major milestone – not just for the Block Island Wind Farm project itself – but also for offshore renewable energy in the United States. The cable, which would cross federal waters, would do two things: connect Block Island to the ocean wind farm 3 miles off the island’s coast, and transmit energy between the mainland and the island.

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Politics
7:40 am
Wed November 19, 2014

"Depoliticize" Judicial Nominating Process Says Former Good Government Leader

Rhode Island Superior Court building
Credit Wikimedia Commons

A former government watchdog says governors and state legislators have weakened efforts meant to depoliticize the selection of judges.

The Judicial Nominating Commission was created 20 years ago to try to lessen the General Assembly’s influence on picking judges. The JNC is supposed to choose 3 to 5 highly qualified candidates, and the legislature is expected to act quickly once a governor picks a judge. But former Common Cause head Phil West said governors and lawmakers have fouled up the process.

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Coventry
3:19 pm
Tue November 18, 2014

Coventry Firefighters Union Willing To Negotiate, Surprised By Bankruptcy Announcement

The Central Coventry firefighters union says it was surprised to learn that filing for bankruptcy was on the table. The union’s president said he thought cost cutting negotiations were moving forward.

There’s been little movement on the Central Coventry Fire District’s expected path towards bankruptcy since it was first reported last week, by channel 12.  The union has been in talks with a state receiver for the past several months.  The fire district is more than 3 million dollars in debt according to union president David Gorman. 

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Providence
9:28 am
Tue November 18, 2014

Providence Mayor-Elect Elorza To Host Series Of Community Forums

Mayor-elect Jorge Elorza has already begun laying out his transition team, and will begin a series of community forums in the city.
Credit Ian Donnis / RIPR

The mayor-elect of Providence, Jorge Elorza, has scheduled a series of forums to hear from city residents.

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RI News
1:37 pm
Mon November 17, 2014

RI Gas Prices Drop Below $3, First Time In Four Years

Average gallon of regular unleaded in Rhode Island is at $2.98. That's higher than the national average of $2.89.
Credit File / RIPR

The latest survey out of AAA Southern New England finds a gallon of regular unleaded is going to cost less than $3.00. It’s been four years since prices were this low.

Sure at $2.98 it’s just under $3, but that’s still 22 cents cheaper than it was a month ago. Federal officials say weak fuel demand and lower crude oil prices are keeping costs down at the pump. And drivers can expect the average price for a gallon of unleaded to stay below $3.00 next year.

Massachusetts drivers are paying a nickel less than Rhode Islanders, with an average gallon at $2.93.

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Weather
9:29 am
Mon November 17, 2014

Wind Advisory Issued For State, Gusts Expected Up To 50 MPH

Rhode Islanders may be in for a hairy afternoon commute today.  The National Weather service has issued a wind advisory starting at 3 this afternoon.  Wind speeds may hit 20 to 25 miles per hour with gusts between 40 and 50 miles per hour.  National Weather Service Meteorologist Bill Simpson said the southern part of the state will feel the brunt of the weather.

“The coasts will be more likely to have the highest winds.  Newport, you could see wind gusts over fifty miles per hour, little bit less in the Northern part of the state.”

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Environment
9:26 am
Mon November 17, 2014

RI's Coastal Resources Management Council Hits Major Milestone

After 2 years, the RI Coastal Resources Management Center has developed a shellfish management plan.
Credit Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management and the Coastal Resources Management Council have released the state’s first comprehensive shellfish management plan. The plan recommends better ways to protect shellfish and the shellfishing industry, and improve communication among state agencies, scientists, and fishermen.

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