The Rhode Island Foundation has announced the winners for this year’s innovation fellowships. The program is aimed at sparking new ideas for the state. The award comes with a $300,000 grant.
This year’s two winners include John Haley, a scientist specializing in marine fisheries. He’s working on a product to improve mussel aquaculture. It’s a kind of cord that’s “pre-loaded” with mussel larvae to speed up the cultivation time for mussel farmers.
The state’s management plan that zones offshore waters for renewable energy projects is getting an update. The first public meeting for stakeholders is happening Thursday at the University of Rhode Island.
The Ocean Special Area Management Plan, or SAMP for short, is a planning tool that allows the state to balance both the economy and the environment as it pursues offshore energy projects. It includes about 15-hundred square miles of portions of Block Island Sound, Rhode Island Sound, and the Atlantic Ocean.
College professors are raising concerns about a plan to tie state funding for higher education with performance. The proposal calls for targets in areas like graduation rates and degrees in high demand fields. Schools would have to meet the targets to qualify for part of their state funding starting after 2016.
Community College of Rhode Island English Professor Anthony Amore says students and faculty need to play a role in setting the performance measures.
One interest group that is already lining up support for a new Pawtucket Red Sox stadium in Providence: Organized labor.
Scott Duhamel, secretary-treasurer of the Rhode Island Building Trades Council emerged from a press briefing this afternoon by James Skeffington, president of the team and quickly said the building trades unions are planning to be vocal backers of the deal.
``We are all in, 100 percent,’’ said Duhamel. ``This may end up being our number one legislative priority this year.’’