Gov. Lincoln Chafee’s switch to the Democratic Party has cost him one key supporter. Warwick Mayor Scott Avedisian, a longtime Chafee friend and backer, said he will not support the governor in his re-election bid.
“He’s been a lifelong friend so I’ll still be his friend but we’ll have to see what happens politically as we move forward,” said Avedisian. “I’m a Republican and I would expect to be supporting the Republican candidate.”
Although court challenges are still in the pipeline, a federal judge’s refusal to block tolling of the Sakonnet River Bridge makes it increasingly likely that tolls will be collected, starting early next month. The Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Authority is taking steps to reduce the cost of tolls.
For a limited time beginning June 25th, the Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Authority will discount the cost of an E-ZPass transponder. The usual price of $20.95 will be cut to $10 and the Authority will apply a $10 credit to the E-ZPass account.
The state Department of Environmental Management says a baby raccoon found in Coventry has tested positive for rabies. The animal was found May 29th in a rural area.
A family brought it into their home where it had contact with several adults and one child. Nine Rhode Islanders and two individuals from Connecticut who had known contact with the animal are now being treated for rabies exposure.
One day after releasing a report showing that African Americans in the state are disproportionately arrested for marijuana possession, the Rhode Island chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union is out with a report showing a racial disparity in school suspensions.
The civil rights group stopped short of calling it racial profiling, but says the issue is something education leaders need to study and correct.
The Providence Water Supply Board is looking to raise its rates. There’s a public hearing at the state Public Utility Commission Wednesday on a proposal to raise residential rates by 24 percent and wholesale rates by 32 percent. Because 60 percent of the state gets its water from Providence, the rate hike will be felt across much of Rhode Island. Joining morning host Chuck Hinman in the studio with more is Rhode Island Public Radio news director Catherine Welch.
Education Secretary Arne Duncan said Rhode Islanders should look at progress made in its schools while weighing the fate of state education commissioner Deborah Gist. Duncan made the comment on a conference call with Rhode Island reporters.
In a call of support for Gist, Duncan touted rising test scores and graduation rates as signs that the state is making progress. Teachers and parents have been outspoken in their opposition to Gist. But Duncan defends her, calling her collaborative.
The City of Pawtucket is stepping up efforts to combat a rat problem. The city gets ten to 15 complaints a week about the rodents.
The City of Pawtucket has set out 85 rat bait stations. But unlike previous years, where they might have gone unchecked for up to two months, they’re now being checked, and re-baited if necessary, every two weeks. Shawn Logue, the city’s Code Enforcement Director, said the rat problem is most prevalent in two neighborhoods.
Providence Business News Editor Mark Murphy joins Rhode Island Public Radio's Dave Fallon for a weekly business segment we're calling "The Bottom Line." Each Friday they look at business news and themes that affect local business and the public.