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Health Care
2:01 pm
Mon March 2, 2015

RI Lawmakers Move To Ban Not-Yet-Legal Powdered Alcohol

Rhode Island lawmakers are considering a ban on so-called powdered alcohol. Yes, that’s a thing, and no, it isn’t legal yet in the United States.

A senate committee is scheduled to consider a couple of bills that would ban a substance known as powdered alcohol – a product that isn’t available yet in this country. It’s alcohol in powder form, to which you add water and mix.

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Transportation
1:30 pm
Mon March 2, 2015

Construction Slated To Begin On Solid Median Along Pell Bridge

The Pell Bridge, which spans Newport and Jamestown, will soon have a permanent barrier to block cars from crossing into oncoming traffic.
Credit RIPR FILE

Construction is slated to begin this month on a solid barrier dividing lanes on the Pell Bridge in Newport.  The public has called for a median for years.  

Calls for a median grew louder after a 75 year-old man crossed into oncoming traffic on the bridge on Christmas Eve of 2013, and died of his injuries. The Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Authority installed reflective posts along the center of the bridge a year ago.  But they cannot stop cars from crossing into oncoming traffic. 

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On Politics
12:02 pm
Mon March 2, 2015

Developer Chace Working To Buy Providence Journal Building

Credit RIPR File Photo

Developer Arnold "Buff" Chace Jr. is working to acquire the Providence Journal Building at 75 Fountain Street, and he expects the ownership of the property to be resolved by the end of this month.

Working with "an outside investment company" that he declined to identify, Chace said he has the Journal property under a tentative purchase agreement. He said he's pursuing a review of the condition of the site, which includes two parking lots. Chace declined to discuss terms for a possible acquisition of the property.

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The Pulse
11:21 am
Mon March 2, 2015

How Other States Are Trying To Cut Medicaid Costs

In Connecticut, Gov. Dannel Malloy has proposed deep cuts to Medicaid to help close a $1.3 billion dollar state budget deficit. Arielle Levin Becker reports in the CT Mirror about Malloy's proposal:

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Education
9:01 am
Mon March 2, 2015

Rhode Island Educators Prepare For PARCC

Science teacher Barbara Walton Faria stands in front of Thompson Middle School in Newport

Teachers across the country are under fire to increase student test scores and start using tougher standards in their classrooms. They’re also about to start using new tests to find out how their students are doing. So what is it like to be a teacher right now, and what concerns do teachers have about the changes in their classrooms? 

Rhode Island Public Radio's education reporter Elisabeth Harrison spoke with Newport Middle School Science Teacher Barbara Walton-Faria to find out. Walton-Faria is the chair of RI Teacher Advisory Council.

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Environment
7:20 am
Mon March 2, 2015

Brown University Researcher Examines Impacts Of Tidal Energy Projects

Brown University professor Heather Leslie took a look at the Muskeget Channel Tidal Energy project to examine more comprehensive ways to evaluate the effects of tidal energy development.
Courtesy of Brown University

The federal government is investing millions of dollars to harness energy from ocean waves and tides as energy demands continue to grow. (In 2013, it spent $16 million on 17 tidal projects.) It’s also investing money to research how these tidal energy projects may be developed responsibly and sustainably. Some of that research is coming out of Brown University.

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On Politics
3:05 pm
Sun March 1, 2015

Former State Sen. Mike Lenihan Dies At 71

Former Rhode Island Senator from East Greenwich, J. Michael Lenihan, passed away this weekend.
Credit Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

J. Michael Lenihan, the East Greenwich Democratic state senator and tireless advocate for open government causes, died at his home yesterday after a battle with cancer. He was 71.

Lenihan was a leader of government reform forces in the aftermath of the credit union collapse of the early 1990s. A burly high school history teacher, he played a crucial role in crafting legislation on lobbyist disclosure, open government records laws and increasing transparency in a state government not known for always being accountable to voters.

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On Politics
2:41 pm
Sun March 1, 2015

RIP Outfielder Minnie Minoso

RIP Minnie Minoso, who helped integrate major league baseball in the 1950s as a player for the Chicago White Sox, has died.

The speedy Gold Glove left fielder was a native of Cuba and didn’t speak much English when he came to the White Sox from the Negro League. ``For South Siders and Sox fans all across the country, including me, Minnie Minoso is and will always be `Mr. White Sox,’’ said President Barack Obama in a statement.

On Politics
2:19 pm
Sun March 1, 2015

Snow Parking Bans On Streets In Providence, Newport

Snow drifts pile up along Exchange Terrace in downtown Providence.
Credit John Bender / RIPR

In what has become an all too familiar winter announcement this year, the cities of Providence and Newport have ordered street parking  bans.

Mayor Jorge Elorza announced this afternoon that the capital city’s parking ban will go into effect at midnight Monday (March 2) and remain in effect until further notice. The mayor also said in a statement that parents should remain on alert for a possible school tomorrow. The city’s snow hotline telephone number is 680-8080.

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On Politics
5:39 pm
Fri February 27, 2015

TGIF Will Return March 6

My TGIF column is on vacation and will return next Friday, March 6. See you then!

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