Kate Brewster

Kate Brewster, executive director and co-founder of the Economic Progress Institute, is leaving the low-income advocacy and research group after 11 years to become executive director of the Jonnycake Center of Peace Dale, which provides food and clothing to needy local residents in South County while also engaging in policy initiatives and advocacy.

``It is with tremendous mixed emotions that I leave the institute, an organization that has had a lasting and profound impact on the ability of Rhode Islanders to make ends meet,’’ said Brewster in a statement.

Kristin Gourlay

Rhode Island has a poverty rate of 14%, according to a scorecard from the Corporation for Enterprise Development, a national think-tank.

The Economic Progress  Institute of Rhode Island holds  its annual policy conference Thursday to tackle the complex issue of poverty in the Ocean State.  Rhode Island Public Radio's Elisabeth Harrison sits down with that organization’s executive director, Kate Brewster.

The business community is applauding a proposed cut in Rhode Island’s corporate tax rate.

In his latest budget, Governor Lincoln Chafee calls for cutting the corporate tax from 9 to 7 percent over three years.

Greater Providence Chamber of Commerce head Laurie White calls that a smart move. “It would be a welcome change. It’s not a game-changer. There are lots of factors that contribute to positive business climate rankings and profile, but this is certainly a welcome step.”