Tax Hike For Woonsocket Residents

May 23, 2013

A tax hike is on the way for Woonsocket residents. The House has passed a supplemental tax leaving home owners with additional $240 dollars a year 5 year period.  The tax will help close the city’s 17 million dollar budget gap. Woonsocket City Councilman Roger Jalette says he does not support the proposal.

Catherine Welch / RIPR

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Rhode Island is responding to a lawsuit claiming that it stymied Steward Health Care’s bid to acquire Landmark Medical Center in Woonsocket.

Steward is the Massachusetts-based, for-profit health care chain that tried to acquire Landmark, which has been in receivership for several years. Steward filed suit in Superior Court this week claiming Blue Cross thwarted those plans purposefully to maintain what Steward calls an unlawful monopoly on commercial insurance and hospital services.

Putting an end to speculation about her next move, state Represenative Lisa Baldelli-Hunt announced Tuesday that she's a candidate for mayor in Woonsocket.

Here's part of her statement:

Bradley Campbell/RIPR

The budget commission that’s running the city of Woonsocket has asked area lawmakers to introduce a bill that would authorize a $2.5 million dollar supplemental tax increase.  It’s part of a plan to bail out the financially distressed community.

The average Woonsocket resident would pay an additional $150 in property taxes and $90 in vehicle taxes under terms of a supplemental tax bill introduced by two state lawmakers. The aim is to raise $2.5 million. It’s part of a larger plan to erase a $17 million deficit over the next five years.

Catherine Welch / RIPR

Rhode Island’s Attorney General and Department of Health officials say they’re suspending their review of Prime Healthcare’s application to buy the Woonsocket-based Landmark Medical Center.

Catherine Welch / RIPR

Nothing says home quite like a white picket fence, and Jacqueline Dowdy’s got one surrounding her light green triple-decker. Her grandparents bought the place more than 40 years ago. Back then, they lived on the first floor.

“My parents lived on this floor, this is the apartment I grew up in,” says Dowdy. “And I had an aunt, one of my mother’s younger sisters, who lived on the third floor.”

Welcome back to my weekly column. As always, your tips and thoughts are welcome at idonnis (at) ripr (dot) org. Let's get to the list.

The fight for fiscal stability in Woonsocket and mixed news on Rhode Island's economy. That’s part of the discussion this week on Political Roundtable with guest Woonsocket City Council President John Ward.

Woonsocket City Council President John Ward is our guest on Bonus Q+A as we talk Woonsocket's economy, its upcoming mayoral race, consolidation, the historic tax credit, and other issues.

Ian Donnis / RIPR

Woonsocket City Council President John Ward visits the Roundtable this week to talk about the outlook for fiscal stability in the northern Rhode Island community; the debate over tax policy in Rhode Island; and how to keep more young workers in the Ocean State.