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.

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Politics
3:14 pm
Tue December 18, 2012

Raimondo pledges "good faith" effort on pension mediation; Chafee "pleased"

State Treasurer Gina Raimondo, a leading advocate for litigating the pension case in court, is out with a statement responding to the mediation ordered this morning by Judge Sarah Taft-Carter:

“I have great respect for the judicial system and it is important to let this process unfold in an orderly and transparent way. We owe that to the people of Rhode Island and to our public employees.

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Politics
12:19 pm
Tue December 18, 2012

Taft-Carter orders mediation in the pension lawsuit

Superior Court Judge Sarah Taft-Carter this morning told the two sides in the legal challenge to last year's landmark overhaul of the pension system to try to settle their differences through mediation.

Court spokesman Craig Berke says the talks will be facilitated by the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service, a branch of the federal government. Taft-Carter is due to be updated on the status of the discussions in early February.

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Politics
5:07 pm
Mon December 17, 2012

Paiva Weed commits to committee vote on same-sex marriage; referendum amendments expected

Senate President Teresa Paiva Weed says there will be a vote on same-sex marriage in the Senate Judiciary Committee this year.

In an interview in her office this afternoon, she said:

Certainly, it will be an issue that will be before the Senate this year .... There will be a vote in Judiciary on the issue.”

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Education
4:12 pm
Mon December 17, 2012

Brown University lags behind academic peers in its investment return

Brown University might be perhaps the hippest destination in the Ivy League, but it's a investment laggard compared with the nation's other top universities.  

Brown earned just 1 percent on its portfolio in fiscal 2012, placing it 10th in this analysis by the Skorina Letter, a financial newsletter:

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Politics
3:15 pm
Mon December 17, 2012

RI Judiciary working to update its 31-year-old media policy

The Rhode Island Judiciary is working to overhaul a media policy last updated in 1981 -- when manual typewriters remained in widespread use.

As it stands, trial justices have some latitude on the technology that reporters can and can't use in their individual courtrooms.

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Politics
2:19 pm
Mon December 17, 2012

Raimondo hires new chief investment officer for state

State Treasurer Gina Raimondo has hired Anne-Marie Fink as the state's chief investment officer, replacing Kenneth Goodreau, who, Raimondo says, is leaving after four years for a CIO job with TIG Advisors, effective January 1. 

Via news release:

Fink will be responsible for managing the state's $7.3 billion dollar pension system. 

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Politics
1:22 pm
Mon December 17, 2012

In switch, Raimondo backs disclosing contributors to EngageRI

After a week in which the Wall Street Journal reported on a six-figure contribution to EngageRI by a Houston billionaire, state Treasurer Gina Raimondo is now supporting disclosure about contributors to the pension overhaul advocacy group.

ProJo political columnist Ed Fitzpatrick had the details in his Sunday column yesterday:

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Politics
5:26 pm
Fri December 14, 2012

TGIF: 10 things to know about RI politics + media

Everything pales in comparison to the horrific news today from Newtown, Connecticut, where a gunman killed more than two-dozen people, including 20 children. Governor Lincoln Chafee says state officials have offered to assist their counterparts in Connecticut . . . . Here's my countdown for the week: 

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On Politics
4:15 pm
Fri December 14, 2012

Providence police overwhelmingly approve settlement on benefit cuts

Providence police on Thursday approved, by an 89 percent margin, a settlement with the City of Providence that, the city says, saves $18.5 million in the current budget year and cuts the pension plan’s unfunded liability by at least $170 million. The vote, word which came in via mobile phones as city officials joined reporters for a holiday party at the home of David Ortiz, Mayor Angel Taveras’ press secretary, is the latest in a string of negotiated settlements in Providence.

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On Politics
4:05 pm
Fri December 14, 2012

Diossa: restoring trust is the key to raising investment in Central Falls

James Diossa, the mayor-elect of Central Falls, says he hopes to raise the level of investment in the city by restoring confidence in its municipal government.

During an interview broadcast this morning on RIPR, Diossa said:

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