Rhode Island

Manton Avenue Project

Live theater is thriving in Rhode Island, and one program may inspire a new generation of playwrights. The Manton Avenue Project has kids write the plays and adult actors bring them to life. Rhode Island Public Radio intern Tarpley Hitt went to a performance to check it out.  

On a Saturday evening, kids race around a small stage in Roger Williams Memorial Park, fighting for the best patch of grass. Parents lean back on beach chairs as two performers enter with microphones.

RIPR file photo

Attorneys General from across the eastern United States convene Thursday in Newport. They’re participating in a two-day conference organized by the National Association of Attorneys General.

Amy Kempe from the Rhode Island Attorney General’s office says the meeting will focus on making the most of taxpayer money through partnerships.

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

Rhode Island Secretary of State Nellie Gorbea hosted a roundtable Thursday to address questions about cyber security and voter fraud.

Yale Publishes Mysterious Medieval Manuscript

Oct 27, 2016
Davis Dunavin / WSHU

It’s one of the world’s great literary mysteries: a 15th century book full of bizarre illustrations of imaginary plants, astrological signs, surreal figures and landscapes. Its origins are unknown, its creator anonymous. And it’s written entirely in an unknown language that’s stumped the world’s greatest code breakers.

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders won Rhode Island's Democratic primary by more than 10 points, beating rival Hillary Clinton with the help of grass-roots and student-led efforts. But Sanders went on to lose the nomination, leaving his most ardent fans in something of a quandary.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

The rare New England cottontail rabbit and other shrubland species are getting some new help from the U.S. Fish and wildlife Service. The agency is targeting 15,000 acres of land in six northeastern states, to be included in a new "Great Thickets National Wildlife Refuge."

RIPR FILE

During his trip, Rhode Island's senior U.S. senator will make stops in Afghanistan and Iraq. Reed’s visit comes as Iraqi forces are working to take the city of Mosul back from the Islamic State, which has controlled the city for about two years.

Reed plans to spend an unspecified amount of time in Iraq , Afghanistan and Bahrain, meeting with foreign leaders, American civilians and military personnel.

Dank Depot/flickr / Creative Commons License

A new poll from Boston public radio station WBUR finds growing support for a ballot measure that would legalize recreational marijuana. In Rhode Island, advocates have pushed for a similar measure, but some local lawmakers say they will wait to see what happens in the Bay State before taking up the issue.

Jill Kaufman / NEPR/NENC

Louisiana and Texas permitted early voting in 1921. It’s a slow moving trend, but it’s definitely taking hold. Thirty-seven states now provide some kind of opportunity for registered voters to cast ballots before Election Day. Massachusetts is the newest kid on the block with in-person early voting starting Monday, October 24.

In Springfield, Massachusetts, the city’s election commissioner, Gladys Oyola, said she’s been preparing for “the election before the election” since 2014, when then-Governor Deval Patrick signed early voting into Massachusetts law.

Former Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling is heading to the conservative media organization Breitbart. The former sports star has been increasingly visible in the news.

Two weeks ago, Schilling penned an opinion piece in the Providence Journal in which he blamed then-governor Lincoln Chafee for the failure of 38 Studios. Schilling helped found the video game company, which subsequently went bankrupt, after receiving tens of millions of dollars in support from the state.

Aaron Read / RIPR

Rhode Island is among a small number of states that don’t have a gubernatorial line-item veto.Advocates are pressing lawmakers to take up the issue in the next legislative session.

Supporters say the line-item veto brings more accountability to the budget process. They say that’s especially important in Rhode Island, which has a particularly powerful legislature.

Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

Ahead of the presidential election, we’ve been hearing from voters across the country and the state. Analysts have remarked on the heated rhetoric of this year’s elections; specifically language used to describe immigrants, refugees and Muslim Americans. 

Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

The nation’s first offshore wind farm off the coast of Block Island is in the middle of its testing phase. It’ll start producing electricity next month. Delegates from various federal Sea Grant programs around the country got a boat tour of the turbines to learn how the Ocean State got this project done. 

RIPR FILE

Citing the city's tight financial picture, Finance Committee members decided Tuesday to withdraw support for a $40 million infrastructure bond proposed by Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza. 

The money was intended for several projects including street and sidewalk repairs, as well as improvements to city sewer systems and parks and recreation facilities.  

Members opposing the measure cited unfunded pension liabilities for retirees, and a poor rating from the credit ratings agency Moody’s.

ACLU/Human Rights Watch

African Americans in Rhode Island are disproportionately affected by drug laws, according to new report from the American Civil Liberties Union and the nonprofit Human Rights Watch.

The numbers – culled from national 2014 law enforcement data – show black residents in Rhode Island are nearly three times more likely to be arrested for drug possession than white residents.

According to ACLU of Rhode Island’s policy analyst Hillary Davis, that’s despite an overall drop in arrests for drug crimes in the state.

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