Legislative finance committees are set to start holding hearings Tuesday on details of Governor Gina Raimondo’s first budget. The governor’s spending plan has attracted both praise and criticism.
The House and Senate finance committees stage weeks of hearings to review different aspects of the annual budget. Supporters and opponents of different programs turn out to testify, in an attempt to sway lawmakers.
State Representative Patricia Morgan (R-West Warwick) says she plans to introduce a bill Wednesday that would allow voters to decide if the new owners of the PawSox can use public financing or tax relief to build their envisioned ballpark on former I-195 land in Providence.
Morgan says the measure is necessary to protect taxpayers. As an example, she points to how taxpayers subsidize the Rhode Island Convention Center Authority to the tune of millions of dollars each year "without even having been given the right to say yes or no."
On a roughly 4-to-1 margin, retired state employees on Monday approved a settlement offer to resolve a court fight over the 2011 overhaul of the pension system. The fate of the settlement remains unclear since it still faces approval by a series of union groups, the General Assembly, and the Superior Court judge overseeing the case, Sarah Taft-Carter.
Happy spring (although it may not feel like it for days, if not weeks), and thanks for stopping by for my weekly column. As usual, your tips and thoughts are welcome at idonnis (at) ripr (dot) org, and you can follow me on the twitters. Let's head in.
Representative Donald Lally (D-Narragansett), the second-longest serving member of the Rhode Island House of Representatives, announced his resignation on Tuesday. A short time later, Susan Cicilline Buonanno, the sister of US Representative David Cicilline, unveiled her candidacy for the seat being vacated by Lally.
The special election to replace Lally has been scheduled for June 9 by Secretary of State Nellie Gorbea.
Governor Gina Raimondo on Tuesday said she'll continue to back a settlement to high-stakes pension litigation "on the right terms to the state."
As state treasurer, Raimondo spearheaded the 2011 overhaul of the state pension system that shaved about $4 billion from the state's long-term obligations., The savings were achieved by raising retirement ages, suspending cost of living adjustments and moving workers from a defined benefit plan to a hybrid defined contribution plan.
Happy Budget Week, and thanks for stopping by for my weekly column. Your tips and thoughts are always welcome at idonnis (at) ripr (dot) org, and you can follow me all week long on the twitters. Let's get to it.