cities and towns en Pawtucket Mayor Unveils Budget With No Tax Increase <p>Pawtucket Mayor Donald Grebien has proposed a budget that excludes any tax hike for residents or businesses. The proposed 112-million dollar budget includes buying a rescue vehicle to cut overtime costs, giving schools 600-thousand extra dollars, and setting aside money in the rainy day fund. Grebien said the arrival of new businesses, cuts in city staff, and grant revenue helped craft the budget.</p> Fri, 25 Apr 2014 13:51:32 +0000 Catherine Welch 32624 at Watch Continues on Possible Settlement in Pension Case <p>Speculation continues about whether a settlement will emerge from closed-door pension mediation as soon as next week.<strong> </strong></p><p>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 href=""> a new white paper</a>. But as Beardsley says, it remains unclear if the General Assembly will be receptive to approving a settlement.</p><p></p> Fri, 07 Feb 2014 18:35:22 +0000 Ian Donnis 28801 at Watch Continues on Possible Settlement in Pension Case TGIF: 12 Things to Know About RI Politics + Media <p>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.</p> Fri, 08 Mar 2013 21:21:14 +0000 Ian Donnis 11634 at Woonsocket retirees being asked to accept concessions <p>Municipal retirees in Woonsocket are being asked Monday to accept pension and healthcare concessions as part of a five-year plan to improve the city's finances.</p><p>City Council President John Ward, a member of a state budget commission, says a freeze in 3 percent annual cost of living adjustments in Woonsocket's local pension plan is part of the proposal.</p> Mon, 25 Feb 2013 20:28:38 +0000 Ian Donnis 10926 at Gallogly targeting November 6 for mayoral election in Central Falls <div class="entry clear"><p><a href=""><img alt="" class="alignleft size-medium wp-image-7537" src=";h=225" title="Gallogly + Orson 09-21-12" height="225" width="300"></a>State Revenue director <a href="">Rosemary Booth Gallogly </a>hope to finalize the November 6&nbsp;presidential election as&nbsp;the date&nbsp;for choosing a successor to <a href=" Fri, 21 Sep 2012 19:07:28 +0000 Ian Donnis 8568 at Polisena: voters need to press legislators for answers <p>Johnston Mayor <a href="">Joseph Polisena </a>tends to get somewhat less attention than some of his counterparts from other cities. But Polisena was candid and quotable during a visit to Rhode Island Public Radio’s <a href="">Political Roundtable </a>last week. Here are some of the highlights:</p> Mon, 06 Aug 2012 19:06:18 +0000 Ian Donnis 8809 at Johnston’s Polisena says he bulked up his campaign account to fend off the firefighters’ union <div class="entry clear"><p><a href=""><img alt="" class="alignleft size-medium wp-image-7148" src=";h=225" title="Joseph Polisena on PRT 08-02-12" height="225" width="300"></a>&nbsp;It might not be <a href="">Raimondo-like</a>, but Johnston Mayor <a href="">Joseph Polisena </a Fri, 03 Aug 2012 18:17:40 +0000 Ian Donnis 8812 at Moody’s offers mixed comment on RI’s 2013 budget <p><a href="">Moody’s Investors Service</a> says the $8.1 billion budget signed into law by Governor Lincoln Chafee on June 15 “is credit positive for Central Falls and schools, but leaves Woonsocket and pensions unaddressed.”</p><p>Moody’s points to “a material increase in funding for schools” — $34 million, or almost 4 percent, “marking the third consecutive annual increase in school funding. State funding for education now stands at over $900 million, well above pre-recession peak.”</p> Wed, 27 Jun 2012 08:00:00 +0000 Ian Donnis 9918 at Nocera calls Brien a smart ALEC; rep says NYT column a “hit piece” <p>Anti-tax activist <a href="">Grover Norquist </a>once famously talked about shrinking the federal government “to the size where we can drown it in the bathtub.” Providence native <a href="">Joe Nocera </a>uses his New York Times’ op-ed column today to argue that state Representative <a href="">Jon Brien </a>is wielding a&nbsp;similar cudgel to cut spending&nbsp;in Woonsocket:</p> Tue, 19 Jun 2012 21:21:21 +0000 Ian Donnis 10677 at Ward says Woonsocket has a strong legal hand to make cuts if talks fail; Brien defends anti-tax stan <p>Woonsocket City Council President John Ward invokes the example set by Providence in describing how the city might wipe out its&nbsp;deficit if negotiations with unions don’t get the job done.</p> Fri, 15 Jun 2012 19:00:00 +0000 Ian Donnis 10688 at