PROVIDENCE, RI – Weather forecasters now predict that Hurricane Irene could hit Rhode Island as soon as Sunday Morning. The state will most likely be on the windward side of the storm.
Meteorologist Matt Doody from the National Weather Service says Irene should decrease to a Category 1 storm by the time it reaches Southern New England. But Doody warns that such a storm will still cause damage, as the New England coastline will take the brunt of its power.
PROVIDENCE, RI – At 2nd Story Theatre in Warren artistic director Ed Shea has changed what he calls the audience's "participation" in the play. Bill Gale checked out the new layout and the new production of "Master Class," a look at opera diva Maria Callas.
At 2nd Story these nights there's a whole new look. Artistic leader Ed Shea has bolted from his years-long theater-in-the-round motif. Audience members once again, sit facing the stage. The proscenium is back. And it's welcome.
PROVIDENCE, RI – Rhode Island lawmakers will gather for a rare September meeting in preparation for a special session on pension reform slated for October. Legislative leaders have called all members to a September 6th pension briefing at the Renaissance Providence Hotel. Members of the House and Senate budget committees will meet three more times in September on the pension issue and potential solutions. Recent estimates put Rhode Island's unfunded pension liability at roughly $7 billion.
PROVIDENCE, RI – A North Providence attorney who's been sentenced to more than five years in prison for his role in a bribery scheme has been granted a six-day reprieve in reporting to prison. Robert Ciresi asked for a 30-day postponement to the start of his sentence but federal prosecutors granted only six days. That pushes his reporting date back to September 6th. Ciresi is also appealing the conviction to a federal appeals court in Boston.
PROVIDENCE, RI – Stay off the roads if you can. That's the plea from state officials worried about the combination of heavy traffic and down traffic lights. Hundreds of signals are out across the state.
Governor Lincoln Chafee reminds drivers to treat a down signal like a four way stop intersection. "Yield to your right as you come into these intersections with no traffic signal, it tends that people want to keep going, keep going then you have the accident."
PROVIDENCE, RI – It's been exactly one year today since Rhode Island won a $75 million Race to the Top grant. State education officials are using the federal funding to overhaul curriculum, teacher evaluations and data systems throughout the state.
Rhode Island Education Commissioner Deborah Gist says so far roughly $1.6 million has been spent, with that number expected to more than double by the end of the federal fiscal year on September 30th.
PROVIDENCE, RI – The U.S. Attorney's office in the smallest state in the country has secured one of the largest financial settlements in American history. Rhode Island U.S. Attorney Peter Neronha says Google has agreed to pay a $500 million settlement for allowing pharmacies claiming to be Canadian to advertise prescription drugs to U.S. consumers. Neronha says prescription drugs cannot be sold to Americans without FDA approval.