Ian Donnis / RIPR

Elorza Details Offers to Firefighters; City Prepares to Implement Platoon Change

The City of Providence plans to increase firefighters' base pay by eight percent as part of the slated Sunday implementation of a different platoon structure meant to reduce overtime spending by millions of dollars a year. During a Friday afternoon news conference, Mayor Jorge Elorza said firefighters can get a more generous pay increase -- 33 percent --- if they agree to a plan to increase their average weekly hours, from 42 to 56. Effective Sunday morning, the city plans to cut the number...
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John Collins / Old Sturbridge Village

Rebels And Redcoats Set To Storm Sturbridge Village

The Revolutionary War returns to New England soil this weekend in Massachusetts. The annual reenactment known as Redcoats and Rebels is thought to be the largest war reenactment in the country. Event Coordinator Jim O’Brien says it features more than 1,000 soldiers in full period costume. “You forget about today,” said O’Brien. “You really forget who you are. For that moment, you are back in the 18th century. It really is just a unique experience that has immediate gratification.” O’Brien...
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Happy Friday, and thanks for stopping by for my weekly column. There's plenty of news, even in the peak of summer, so we're ready to dive in. Your tips and thoughts remain welcome at idonnis (at) ripr (dot) org, and you can follow me through the week on the twitters. Here we go.

Steve Wood

Rhode Island’s Land Trust Council is inviting the public to enjoy all of the green space the environmental coalition has preserved over the years. Organizers have planned more than 50 outdoor events across the state, starting with a walk Friday night in Bristol to admire the rare blue moon.

Rhode Island Land Trust Director, Rupert Friday said the events known as “Land Trust Days” provide a chance to unplug and reconnect with nature. 

Providence Business News Editor Mark Murphy joins Rhode Island Public Radio's Dave Fallon for our weekly business segment The Bottom Line.

This week Mark and Dave ask Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza about the city's decision to remove pension investments from a group of greenhouse gas-producing companies.

Rhode Island has been given the green light for a pilot program to coordinate health care for people enrolled in both Medicare and Medicaid. They're known as “dual eligibles” and have to navigate two complex systems to get the care they need.

John Bender

Rhode Island's new Education Commissioner Ken Wagner officially begins his tenure on Saturday, August 1st, although he is not expected in the office until Monday.

The Rhode Island Department of Education says his first day on the job will include meetings with students, parents and teachers. Wagner is also expected to meet with his new staff.

A former deputy education commissioner in New York State, Wagner has moved to Rhode Island with his family.

He succeeds Deborah Gist as Rhode Island's education chief.

Stephen Neuman, chief of staff for Governor Gina Raimondo, joins Bonus Q&A to talk about personnel changes at the state Department of Transportation; Raimondo's infrastructure-funding proposal; the state's new education commissioner, and much more.

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

Governor Gina Raimondo has called for a complete overhaul of the state’s child welfare agency. A new audit has found DCYF failed to follow basic accounting and purchasing practices. With more about the problems and the proposed fixes, Rhode Island Public Radio’s Kristin Gourlay joins news director Elisabeth Harrison in the studio.

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

Governor Gina Raimondo has ordered a complete overhaul of The Department of Children, Youth, and Families. The child welfare agency has signed tens of millions of dollars in contracts with no financial controls or oversight.

It might sound something like this spot-on satire from Key & Peele.

Keep watching for the car commercial at the end.

 

Elisabeth Harrison

Two experimental high schools scheduled to open in Providence this fall will be known as 360 High School and Evolutions High School.

Both schools will be located inside larger, existing high schools. Evolutions will be inside Mt. Pleasant High School, and 360 will be at Hope High School.

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