Politics

Politics
1:02 pm
Thu June 17, 2010

Governor nixes historian laureate post

Providence, R.I. – Governor Don Carcieri has vetoed a bill establishing the post of Historian Laureate of Rhode Island.

He claimed that the criteria for appointment are inadequate, that the title is unnecessary and that the position puts too much value on one historian's perspective to the exclusion of others.

He also said that the governor, and not the Secretary of State, should have the power to choose who fills the post. He released a statement yesterday urging Rhode Island's representatives to support his veto.

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Politics
12:09 pm
Tue June 15, 2010

Gemma announces bid for RI congressional seat

Anthony Gemma at the formal announcement of his congressional bid. Photo by Ian Donnis.

Providence, R.I. – Businessman and philanthropist Anthony Gemma this morning announced his Democratic campaign for the congressional seat held by Patrick Kennedy.

Gemma told supporters at a Providence Place movie theater that he wants to involve more people in shaping government decisions. He says Rhode Island's top state and federal officials should also hold "board" meetings to work together on major issues.

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Politics
5:58 am
Mon June 14, 2010

Scott MacKay weighs in on the new tax law

Providence, R.I. – Last week, Rhode Island Governor Don Carcieri signed into law an overhaul of the state's income tax system. At the signing ceremony, the Republican Governor was joined and cheered by Democratic General Assembly leaders. But WRNI political analyst Scott MacKay says many Rhode Islanders might not be cheering about the new law when they pay their taxes next year.

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Politics
4:44 am
Fri June 11, 2010

Chafee, Caprio highlight tax issue at first televised debate for governor

Providence, R.I. – The six major candidates for governor last night squared off during their first televised debate.

Exchanges between independent candidate Lincoln Chafee and Democrat Frank Caprio highlighted the Channel 12 debate. Chafee says his proposed temporary sales tax increase is better than passing on property tax hikes to local taxpayers. He says his proposal would mean 50 cents in tax on a $50 clothing purchase.

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Politics
3:37 pm
Thu June 10, 2010

Debate postponed over Providence lawyer nominated to federal bench

Providence, R.I. – The Senate Judiciary Committee has postponed the debate over a Providence lawyer and activist up for a spot on the federal court in Rhode Island.

John McConnell Jr., who was nominated by President Barack Obama for the position in March, will have to wait until next week for the debate.

The hearing was postponed to give McConnell's opponents more time to discuss his history of leading lawsuits against manufacturers and businesses - a history they say makes him unsuitably partisan for a federal court.

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Politics
1:41 pm
Thu June 10, 2010

General Assembly struggles to finish business before year ends

Providence, R.I. – The state Legislature is trying to wrap up business before adjourning the year.

The General Assembly worked late into the night on Wednesday with the House passing legislation giving the Public Utilities Commission a say in a proposed wind farm.

A House committee also endorsed a bill that would let voters decide on whether to expand the state's two slot parlors into full-scale casinos.

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Politics
1:40 pm
Thu June 10, 2010

First debate tonight for gubernatorial candidates

Providence, R.I. – Six candidates running for governor will meet for their first debate.

Thursday's debate hosted by WPRI-TV will be the first chance for voters to see the candidates go toe-to-toe on issues such as the economy and education.

The candidates include two Democrats - General Treasurer Frank Caprio and Attorney General Patrick Lynch - independent Lincoln Chafee, Moderate Ken Block and Republicans John Robitaille and Victor Moffitt.

They are vying to replace Republican Don Carcieri, who is term limited.

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Politics
1:39 pm
Thu June 10, 2010

Lawmakers consider voter referendum on gambling

Providence, R.I. – Rhode Island lawmakers are expecting to take up a measure to let voters decide on expanded gambling.

The House Finance Committee on Wednesday night endorsed a voter referendum on converting the state's two slot parlors into full-blown casinos.

Newport Grand in Newport and Twin River in Lincoln offer video lottery terminals but not the table games found at traditional casinos.

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Politics
4:52 am
Thu June 10, 2010

RI governor signs tax changes into law

Providence, R.I. – In a bill signing ceremony yesterday, Gov. Don Carcieri put his signature on a new law cutting state income taxes for the highest earners. Proponents say the new measure will make the state more competitive.

Gov. Carcieri has been calling for tax cuts since he came into office in 2003, so he was happy to sign the new law.

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Politics
5:59 am
Wed June 9, 2010

Advocates fear fate of RI ethics bill

Advocates for placing the ethics question on the November ballot are seen here. Photo by Ian Donnis.

Providence, R.I. – Good government advocates fear the state Senate may adjourn for the year without acting on a bill to restore the strength of the state ethics commission.

Voters created the state Ethics Commission in 1986 through a constitutional convention to monitor the ethical behavior of public officials. Common Cause Director John Marion says the commission still has an important role to play in Rhode Island.

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