Rhode Island

RI Higher Education
1:16 pm
Wed April 16, 2014

URI Breaks Ground On New Center For LGBTQ Community

An artist rendering of the center, which will house offices, a conference room, and a multi-use spaces.
Credit URI

The University of Rhode Island broke ground this morning on a center for the school’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer community. The center is unique among college campuses.

URI says it’s the only school in the nation to design and build a center specifically for the LGBTQ community.  State officials were on hand to celebrate the groundbreaking, including Governor Lincoln Chafee, and state senator Frank Ferri, who championed Rhode Island’s push for legal same-sex marriages.  Annie Russell is the center’s director.

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Weather
11:10 am
Wed April 16, 2014

Looks Like Spring, Feels Like Winter

Icicles hanging from trees in downtown Providence. It's April.
Credit John Bender / RIPR

Rhode Islanders may have had to dig those winter coats back out this morning.

After a warm weekend, with highs in the sixties, residents woke up to sleet, and icy windshields.

The National Weather Service reports that temperatures dropped into the low thirties overnight, with just under a half inch of precipitation measured at T.F. Green Airport.

And though the skies have cleared up temperatures are expected to hover in the forties Wednesday, with lows in the twenties.  Only slightly warmer weather is predicted for the rest of the week.

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Theater Reviews
2:17 am
Wed April 16, 2014

Contemporary Theater Company’s “Cloud Nine” Worth Catching

Ah, yes, welcome back, “Cloud Nine.” Churchill’s play was a hit in certain quarters back there when the world as we knew it seemed to be tumbling onto a landscape that was unclear and wonderful and scary.

The play won an Obie, Off Broadway’s version of the Tony Awards. It was done around the country by risk-taking regional theaters including a crackerjack production in the 1983-84 season at what we then called the Trinity Square Repertory Company in Providence.

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Boston Marathon
9:01 am
Tue April 15, 2014

Heather Abbott Reflects On The Boston Marathon Bombings One Year Later

Heather Abbott at her Newport home.
Credit Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

Boston Marathon Bombing survivor Heather Abbott will be attending the race once again this year after spending the past year adjusting to life with a prosthetic leg.

Heather Abbott was waiting outside a restaurant near the Boston Marathon finish line when one of the bombs went off and shattered her lower left leg. She was given a prosthetic leg and has spent the past year adjusting to the changes in her life. Abbott said she has put a lot of effort into staying in touch with the other survivors and helping them with their recoveries.

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RI Higher Education
8:34 am
Tue April 15, 2014

University Of Rhode Island First State Institution To Arm Campus Police

The University of Rhode Island's sprawling North Kingston campus.
Credit RIPR FILE

The University of Rhode Island announced today it will arm its on-campus police force with guns.  It's the only public higher education institution in the state to do so.

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RI News
2:48 am
Tue April 15, 2014

Boston Marathon: RI Trooper Doesn’t Consider Himself A Hero

Rhode Island State Police trooper Roupen Bastajian is running this year's marathon after helping victims of last year's bombings.
Credit Catherine Welch / RIPR

Rhode Island State Police trooper Roupen Bastajian had just crossed the finish line of the Boston Marathon when the bombs went off. He was one of many who rushed into the chaos to help the injured. He talks with Rhode Island Public Radio's Catherine Welch about that day and how it's changed him a year later.

Last year’s marathon was the 117th and 117 is Bastajian’s  badge number. It was a beautiful day, other state troopers were also running the marathon and he did it, he crossed the finish line. Minutes later, as he was on his way to the medical tent, the first bomb exploded.

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Health Care
9:17 am
Mon April 14, 2014

Rhode Island Set To Begin Health Insurance Claims Database

Rhode Island is beginning an all-payer claims database to better known how much residents are spending on healthcare, and on what.
Credit Aaron Read / RIPR

You may have gotten a letter in the mail recently from your health insurance company asking whether you wanted to opt out of something called an “all payer claims database.”

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The Bottom Line
11:46 am
Fri April 11, 2014

The Bottom Line: The Message Pension Mediation Sends To Outside Businesses

Providence Business News Editor Mark Murphy joins Rhode Island Public Radio's Dave Fallon for a weekly business segment The Bottom Line.

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RI News
3:53 pm
Thu April 10, 2014

State Employee Unions Agree On Tentative New Contract

Unions representing nearly all state workers have tentatively agreed to a new contract.

The unions representing every state worker except correctional officers and state police have agreed to a contract that increases wages by six percent over four years and increases health care deductibles and co-pays.

State employees have gone nearly three years without a raise.

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General Assembly
8:46 am
Thu April 10, 2014

House Oversight Committee Meets For First Time With New Leadership

The House Oversight Committee meets for the first time since its leadership change.
Credit Don Boorman / RIPR

The House Oversight Committee will hold its first meeting Thursday since recently getting a new chairwoman.  The new chair has been a sharp critic of paying back bondholders who invested in failed video game company 38 Studios.

After winning his post last month, House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello ousted his rival for the speakership, Michael Marcello, from the chairmanship of House Oversight. He replaced Marcello with Representative Karen MacBeth of Cumberland, who sharply criticized last year’s payment to bondholders in 38 Studios.

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