Ian Donnis

Political Reporter

Ian Donnis has been the political reporter for Rhode Island Public Radio since 2009. The Washington Post has repeatedly named him as one of Rhode Island’s best political reporters. In addition to other tasks, Ian tweets frequently at @IanDon, hosts RIPR’s weekly Political Roundtable, and contributes to the station’s On Politics blog. He was for many years a regular panelist on WPRI/WNAC-TV’s Newsmakers, and remains an occasional guest on RI-PBS' A Lively Experiment. Ian previously worked for the Providence Phoenix, the Worcester Telegram & Gazette, and The Associated Press. His reporting has been recognized by the Associated Press, the New England Press Association, the Rhode Island Press Association, and Rhode Island for Community & Justice.

Pages

On Politics
9:36 am
Tue May 21, 2013

Steve Laffey Running for Governor in Colorado

Former Cranston Mayor Stephen Laffey, who had a meteoric rise in Rhode Island politics before losing a Republican primary challenge to then-US Senator Lincoln Chafee in 2006, is headed toward a GOP run for governor in his adopted state of Colorado.

Via KDVR (h/t Kathy Gregg):

Read more
Politics
8:16 am
Tue May 21, 2013

Valois Faces Approval of Full State Senate

Marcel Valois at last week's Senate Committee meeting.
Credit RIPR

Governor Lincoln Chafee’s choice to lead the state Economic Development Corporation faces approval by the full state Senate committee Tuesday.  The votes comes amid debate over the EDC’s future.

Chafee’s choice, Marcel Valois, was unanimously approved by a Senate committee last week. Valois led the EDC in the 1990s during Lincoln Almond’s tenure as governor. He says Rhode Island needs to do a better job of helping business when it can and getting out of the way when it can’t.

Read more
On Politics
5:10 pm
Fri May 17, 2013

TGIF: 12 Things to Know About RI Politics + Media

Welcome back to my Friday column. Your thoughts and tips are always welcome at idonnis (at) ripr (org), and don't forget to follow me on Twitter. Here we go:

Read more
Politics
7:07 am
Fri May 17, 2013

Almonte Announces Plan to Run for Treasurer

Former state auditor Ernest Almonte has announced plans to run as a Democrat for state treasurer next year.  Former treasurer Frank Caprio has also expressed his intention to run for the post.

Almonte’s decision to run for treasurer marks a switch, since he announced plans last year to seek the governor’s office in 2014. In a statement, Almonte doesn’t explicitly explain his decision to change course. Yet he says he’s listened to input from Rhode Islanders and – quote – “made a decision based on logic.”

Read more
Politics
4:00 am
Fri May 17, 2013

Political Roundtable: 2014 Race for Treasurer Heats Up + President Obama's Trio of Controversies

Pablo Rodriguez joins the Roundtable this week as we discuss the 2014 race for treasurer; Governor Lincoln Chafee's recent judicial nominations; lower-than-expected state revenues; and the trio of controversies facing President Obama.

Read more
On Politics
3:45 pm
Thu May 16, 2013

Seth Magaziner Considering a Run for Treasurer in 2014

Seth Magaziner, who would add an unabashedly progressive profile to the 2014 campaign season, is considering running for treasurer next year.

UPDATE: Via email, Magaziner confirms that he's looking at the race, adding that he's still early in the process:

Over the past few days, a number of people have encouraged me to run for General Treasurer should the position become open. I haven't made any decisions yet, but am considering the possibility.

Read more
On Politics
9:44 am
Thu May 16, 2013

Almonte Shifts Gears to Run for Treasurer, not Governor

Former state auditor Ernest Almonte has made it official -- after announcing for governor last year and vowing to stay in the race, he's decided to run instead for state treasurer as a Democrat:

Read more
Politics
7:28 am
Thu May 16, 2013

House Finance Committee Holds Hearing on Payday Lending

General Treasurer Gina Raimondo testifies against payday loans at House Finance Committee hearing.
Credit Ian Donnis / RIPR

The outlook for cutting the interest rate charged by payday lenders remains unclear after the House Finance Committee Wednesday voted to hold two related bills for further study.  Supporters and opponents describe the issue in completely different ways.

A coalition of nonprofits, faith groups and others has been trying for three years to cut the interest rate charged by payday lenders. They point to how the typical annual interest rate is the equivalent of 260 percent. State Treasurer Gina Raimondo was among those calling payday lending a bad business for Rhode Island.

Read more
Politics
8:48 am
Wed May 15, 2013

Valois Approved for Economic Development Corporation by Senate Committee

Marcel Valois sits before Senate Corporations Committee Tuesday.
Credit Ian Donnis / RIPR

Governor Lincoln Chafee’s choice to lead the state Economic Development Corporation appears on a fast-track to approval, following his unanimous approval Tuesday by a state Senate committee.  Marcel Valois is calling for more support for small innovators and entrepreneurs.

Valois says Rhode Island’s business climate doesn’t have to remain the butt of bad ratings in national surveys. Invoking the state motto of “hope,” he says Rhode Island can prosper by bringing a sharper focus and new approach to economic development.

Read more
Politics
2:28 pm
Tue May 14, 2013

Gov. Chafee's Pick for EDC up for Committee Vote

Gov. Lincoln Chafee’s choice to lead the state Economic Development Corporation faces approval by a state Senate committee Tuesday. The vote comes amid debate over whether to reorganize the EDC.

Chafee’s choice, Marcel Valois led the EDC back in the 1990’s during Lincoln Almond’s tenure as governor. Valois is the vice president of an economic foundation. He was previously chief operating officer of the Penske Automotive Group.

Read more

Pages