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On Politics
2:08 pm
Fri March 20, 2015

Scott MacKay Commentary: Time For A Rhode Island Pension Deal

Votes are set to be cast this week for a settlement in the state's pension lawsuit.
Credit RIPR FILE

Once again, Rhode Island politics is ensnared in a public employee pension controversy. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay says it’s time to put this issue in our collective rear view mirror.

It’s well past time to get beyond the noisy debate over public employee pensions in Rhode Island. It’s a joust that has ensnared  the Statehouse for more than a generation. It has long pitted the business community against public employees and their union leaders, fractured relations between conservatives and liberals and led to tortuous attempts for years to shore up the system.

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Political Roundtable
4:00 am
Fri March 20, 2015

Bonus Q+A: Raimondo on Economic Development, the PawSox, Medicaid & More

Governor Gina Raimondo joins us on Bonus Q+A this week to discuss Rhode Island's economy, changing Medicaid, a possible Providence ballpark for the Pawtucket Red Sox, and much more.

You can hear more of our conversation with Governor Raimondo in our Political Roundtable segment. 

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Political Roundtable
4:00 am
Fri March 20, 2015

Political Roundtable: Raimondo on Her Budget, Jobs & the Pension Dispute

Credit Ian Donnis / RIPR

Governor Gina Raimondo joins Political Roundtable this week to discuss her budget proposal, efforts to reinvent Medicaid, the pension dispute and much more.

You can hear more from Governor Raimondo in our Bonus Q+A segment.

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On Politics
6:06 pm
Thu March 19, 2015

Supporters, Opponents Square Off On Raising RI's $2.89 Sub-Minimum Wage

Bartender/server Kate Conroy calls the sub-minimum wage a poverty wage.
Credit Ian Donnis / RIPR

A new coalition held a Statehouse news conference Thursday to press for an increase in the state’s $2.89 sub-minimum wage. Supporters call this a matter of fairness, since the sub-minimum wage hasn’t changed in 20 years. But the restaurant industry says higher wages would lead to higher food prices.

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Arts & Culture
5:06 pm
Thu March 19, 2015

Rhode Islanders Celebrate St. Joseph's Day With Zeppoles

Scialo Brothers Bakery on Federal Hill in Providence
Credit John Bender / RIPR

Today is St. Joseph’s Day, and many Rhode Islanders are celebrating the holiday with zeppoles. The special pastry is available only around this time of year.  

Customers pack Scialo Brothers Bakery on Federal Hill in Providence. They’re waiting to get their hands on a zeppole. 

The Italian pastry is like a fancy donut. It’s got a flaky crust and cream, topped with powdered sugar, and sometimes a cherry.

Waiting in line, Mary Reynolds says she comes to Scialo’s every year on St. Joseph’s Day. 

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RI News
5:00 pm
Thu March 19, 2015

Full House Approves Twin River Hotel Proposal

Twin River Casino is proposing a 4 story hotel
Credit RIPR FILE

The full house has approved a bill allowing Twin River Casino to build a hotel  on its property.  Twin River wants the hotel to compete with proposed casinos in Massachusetts.

The restriction that keeps Twin River from building a hotel was originally put in place to protect Providence area hotels from losing business.  But now Massachusetts plans to open three casinos and a slot parlor, threatening Twin River’s revenue.  Twin River officials have unveiled a proposal to build a four story hotel on their Lincoln property.

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The Pulse
12:54 pm
Thu March 19, 2015

Kids' Mental Health Hospitalizations Doubled Since Recession

From the EOHHS' latest Health Indicator Data Book, the graph shows what percent of all kids' hospitalizations was for mental health. It's basically doubled since the recession began.
Credit Executive Office of Health and Human Services

Since about 2007, the percent of all hospitalizations of kids 18 and under for a mental health reason has nearly doubled. According to state public health data, there have been a steady number of total hospitalizations - about 20,000 - for kids statewide. In 2002, the percent admitted for a mental disorder was between six and eight percent for kids with private insurance or Medicaid, and quite low for uninsured kids. Today it's between 10 and 12 percent across the board.

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On Politics
11:47 am
Thu March 19, 2015

Raimondo Discusses Budget and More on R.I. Public Political Roundtable Tomorrow A.M.

Gov. Gina Raimondo joins RIPR Political Roundtable tomorrow for a discussion of her first budget and other topics. She talks about the Taylor Swift tax, the Medicaid cuts, the medical insurance tax, her economic development proposals, thePawSox move and more. Tune in tomorrow morning for Political Roundtable and Bonus Q &A with the governor and panelists Ian Donnis, Scott MacKay and Maureen Moakley. If you miss it, the entire interview with be posted at RIPR.org

The Education Blog
10:39 am
Thu March 19, 2015

Elorza Appoints New Members To Providence School Board

Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza is a graduate of Providence Public Schools.
Credit Catherine Welch

Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza has appointed a parent and a history professor to the school board. The mayor also re-appointed board member Keith Oliveira.

Mark Santow, a Providence resident, is an associate professor and chair of the History Department at the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth

Muyideen Ibiyemi has children in Providence public schools, serves on the Highlander Charter School Parent Teacher Organization and is the president of a Nigerian community group.

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Politics
9:00 am
Thu March 19, 2015

A Deeper Look Into Rhode Island's Possible Pension Settlment

Public employee unions may be one step closer to accepting a pension settlement.
Credit RIPR FILE

Public employees in Rhode Island are scheduled to vote next week on a proposed deal to settle a lawsuit over Rhode Island’s pension overhaul.  The settlement could save the state as much as $4 billion dollars in payments to retired state employees.  It could also have benefits for union members.  Rhode Island Public Radio political reporter Ian Donnis talks details with RIPR's Elisabeth Harrison.

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