9:11 am
Fri March 18, 2011

Providence finances on Roundtable

Providence, RI – Providence's budget woes, and critics fire back against Governor Chafee's budget. That's part of the discussion this week on Political Roundtable. Here's our host, WRNI political reporter Ian Donnis.

Do you have insight or expertise on this topic? Please email us, we'd like to hear from you.

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8:53 am
Wed March 16, 2011

Chafee unveils plan to fund transportation projects

I-95 as pictured in Providence. Photo by James Wyman

Providence, RI – Governor Lincoln Chafee used the backdrop of the Pawtucket River Bridge on Interstate 95 Tuesday to make the case for the transit funding plan in his budget.

Chafee wants to steer $12 million from the state general fund for each of the next five years to fund transit improvements. He says creating this regular funding source would allow the state to avoid borrowing and paying interest for costly improvements.

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7:33 am
Thu March 10, 2011

Increased funding would not stop tuition hikes

An entrance to Rhode Island College is pictured above. Photo by Alex Nunes.

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Governor Lincoln Chafee has proposed a $10 dollar increase in funding for the state's higher education system. But it won't be enough to prevent tuition increases at two of the three state schools.

Tuition will remain the same next year at the Community College of Rhode Island. But students at the University of Rhode Island and Rhode Island College will have to pay more. Ray DiPasquale, the president of CCRI and the state Commissioner of Higher Education, says it's unclear how much more.

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10:19 am
Wed March 9, 2011

Chafee calls for sales tax changes in budget proposal

Governor Lincoln Chafee is pictured during his gubernatorial campaign. Photo by Louis Oppenheimer.

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Governor Lincoln Chafee made his first budget address Tuesday night. For fiscal year 2012, the governor proposed financial aid to cities and towns, supporting the school funding formula, and a boost in higher education.

But Chafee also called for cuts, specifically $60 million to Health and Human Services, which will make up some 40 percent of the next state budget.

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7:24 am
Wed March 2, 2011

More women entering homelessness in RI

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – More women are entering homeless shelters due to unemployment and foreclosures in Rhode Island.

Crossroads Rhode Island, provider of services to the homeless, has released a report that found women are the fastest growing group of people facing homelessness.

Crossroads President Anne Nolan says that the issue of women and homelessness is a crisis that often gets overlooked.

Nolan notes that in Providence, a 41-bed women's shelter is consistently overflowing.

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6:56 am
Tue March 1, 2011

Taveras to detail city's finances by week's end

City Hall is pictured here. Photo by Alex Nunes.

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – The Providence financial reckoning becomes clear later this week. City Hall sources say Mayor Angel Taveras is expected to detail the dire condition of city government finances by Thursday.

The Taveras administration isn't saying anything on the record at this point; mayoral spokeswoman Melissa Withers is adamant about not confirming any projected deficit numbers.

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7:01 am
Fri February 25, 2011

Consultant: RI could tap into tourism's potential with better marketing

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – A consultant says Rhode Island's tourism industry is losing market share to states that do a better job promoting themselves.

Mitch Nichols says the Ocean State has great attractions, but is getting out-marketed by Vermont, Maine, and New Hampshire. The Arizona-based consultant was hired by the state Economic Development Corporation.

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11:38 am
Thu February 24, 2011

Can arts businesses help bring Pawtucket back?

Artist Jill Davis is pictured at her Pawtucket studio. Photo by Catherine Welch.

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Advocates say the arts can help put a city on the map, but can they also help put a city budget in the black? Pawtucket officials are hoping the answer to that question is yes.

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6:58 am
Thu February 24, 2011

Home sales, median prices dip slightly

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Rhode Island home sales dipped slightly in January as did the median price. The Rhode Island Association of Realtors reports that existing home sales fell from 395 a year ago to 392 this year.

The median price fell to $198,000 from $200,000 the year prior.

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7:06 am
Wed February 9, 2011

House committee meets on bill to restore e-verify

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – More than 60 people attended a House Labor Committee meeting yesterday to debate illegal immigration. The focal point was a bill to restore former governor Don Carcieri's executive order on immigration.

Tea Party and Rhode Island Statewide Coalition members were among those backing stronger efforts to curb illegal immigration.

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