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On Politics
1:31 pm
Tue September 2, 2014

Layoffs Under Way at the Providence Journal

Layoffs are taking place Tuesday at the Providence Journal, as part of New Media Investment Group's acquisition of Rhode Island's statewide newspaper.

John Hill, president of the Providence Newspaper Guild, declined immediate comment.

New Media signaled the impending layoffs in an email sent to Journal staffers last week.

Developing ....

Politics
9:18 am
Tue September 2, 2014

Republican Gubernatorial Candidates Scoop GOP Endorsements

Cranston Mayor Allan Fung has received an endorsement from Mitt Romney, while businessman Ken Block is expected to receive endorsement from RI Republican John Robitaille.
Credit Ian Donnis / RIPR

With the primary election just a week away, Republican Mitt Romney is throwing his support behind Cranston Mayor Allan Fung.  Romney says Fung has a strong record of financial reform in Cranston.

Republican John Robitaille is expected to endorse businessman Ken Block for Governor in the upcoming primary. Robitaille ran for Governor in 2010, losing narrowly to then-independent Lincoln Chafee.  Block also ran in that election, as a Moderate.  Robitaille is scheduled to make his endorsement at the Statehouse later today.

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RI News
8:27 am
Tue September 2, 2014

U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel To Speak In Newport

U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel
Credit Wikimedia Commons

U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel is scheduled to be in Rhode Island Wednesday.  He’ll be speaking at an event at the U.S. Naval War College in Newport.

Hagel will host a town hall style discussion on defense technology and industry during the ‘Defense Innovation Days’ at the war college.  This conference brings lawmakers and defense industry reps together to discuss changes and trends in the industry.  Rhode Island has long relied on the defense industry for jobs, currently, with several government contracts manufacturing submarines. 

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On Politics
3:19 pm
Sun August 31, 2014

RI Democratic gov and Providence mayor primaries: A wild wrap up

One of the oldest chestnuts in close political campaigns is that the candidate who has the best last week wins.

That applies to the two elections that appear to be going down to the wire: The Democratic primaries for governor and Providence mayor.

In Providence, the contest between newcomer Jorge Elorza, a former Housing Court judge, and City Council President Michael Solomon looks like a nail-biter at this point.  Solomon advantages:  more money, a track record in City Hall and what ought to be a better get-out-the-vote operation.

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Environment
10:00 am
Sat August 30, 2014

Lobster Fishermen Open Kitchen Facility In Newport

David Spencer, president of the Commercial Fisheries Research Foundation and a lobsterman, and DEM Director Janet Coit celebrated the grand opening of the Newport Lobster Shack Kitchen.
Credit Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

Lobster fishermen, the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management, Sen. Jack Reed, and other state leaders celebrated the grand opening of a new kitchen facility in Newport on Friday. The Newport Lobster Shack Kitchen, owned and run jointly by commercial lobster fishermen, sells freshly cooked food made directly from lobsters landed at Pier Nine on Long Wharf. 

DEM Director Janet Coit said many state leaders showed up to push a growing local seafood marketing effort in Rhode Island.

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On Politics
6:26 pm
Fri August 29, 2014

TGIF: 15 Things to Know About Rhode Island Politics & Media

If the Rhode Island political news is coming this hot and heavy, what's it going to be like next week? The September 9 primary witching hour is steadily approach, so welcome back for another edition of my Friday column. Your tips and thoughts are always welcome at idonnis (at) ripr (dot) org, and the land of 140-character notes awaits you via the twitters. Here we go.

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The Bottom Line
5:10 pm
Fri August 29, 2014

The Bottom Line: How The Next Governor Can Jump Start RI’s Economy

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

This week news director Catherine Welch and Mark talk with Rhode Island Public Radio political analyst Scott MacKay. They discuss what Gov. Lincoln Chafee has hit and missed to boost the state’s economy and what the next governor will need to do to lift the state out of its economic doldrums.

When to Listen

You can hear The Bottom Line each Friday at 5:50pm.

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Scott MacKay Commentary
5:00 pm
Fri August 29, 2014

Scott MacKay Commentary: Labor Day 2014, Tough Times For Unions, Workers

As another Labor Day comes and goes, Rhode Island's economy remains sluggish. The unemployment rate is one of the highest in the nation.
Credit RIPR FILE

It’s Labor Day, time to celebrate workers and labor unions. For this Labor Day  RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay says it’s  a tough time for workers and organized labor.

In Rhode Island, Labor Day wasn’t always just another day off. It wasn’t always just an excuse for a last  summer day at the beach.  Or a backyard cookout.

A century ago, Labor Day was a time of worker activism. In 1893, after years of agitation by workers and union leaders, the Rhode Island General Assembly established the first Monday in September as a legal, but not a paid, holiday.

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On Politics
2:12 pm
Fri August 29, 2014

Raimondo's crime hit on Taveras is misleading

Credit Aaron Read, RIPR

When politicians want to launch nasty, negative messages about their opponents, they often choose direct mail because it leaves fewer fingerprints than such other media as television, radio or print.

That looks like the path State General Treasurer Gina Raimondo is traveling in the waning days of the Democratic gubernatorial primary, which takes place September 9. Her camp has fired off a mail piece that blames Providence Mayor Angel Taveras for shootings in Providence.

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The Pulse
2:03 pm
Fri August 29, 2014

Health Care: Still One Of Most Dangerous Workplaces

Nurses at Women and Infants Hospital in Providence, RI demonstrate using a lift to move an obese patient. In this photo, the patient is another nurse, wearing a suit made by puppet maker Big Nazo to simulate obesity for a training exercise.
Credit Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

In honor of Labor Day, I decided to check the most recent U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data on workplace injuries. What are the most dangerous industries in Rhode Island?

Health care, beat only by trucking, being a messenger/courier, or working in some retail outlets. Surprised?

Health care includes nursing homes, which seem to have some of the highest number of work days missed because of injury. That's partly because of all the heavy lifting.

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