Governor Gina Raimondo joins Bonus Q+A this week to discuss the failure of the once-heralded startup Nabsys; challenges at the state Department of Transportation; the outlook for her toll proposal; the new state unemployment numbers; and much more.

thisisbossi / flickr

The Rhode Island Department of Transportation said a growing number of deadly wrong-way accidents has prompted it to invest in an alert system that should be up and running by the end of the summer

With one death already this year, and three last year RIDOT said deadly accidents caused by wrong-way drivers are growing not just in Rhode Island but around the country. So it's installing 20 detection systems that will first alert a driver through signs that they are going the wrong way, and after that the system alerts other drivers and police.


The public has a chance to weigh in Friday on a slate of proposed transportation projects that will be paid for out of a new fund

The new fund helps cities and towns access low-interest loans for road construction projects. It’s modeled after the state’s Clean Water Finance Authority, which over the past 15 years has loaned out $1 billion for municipal sewage treatment projects. In fact, the Clean Water Finance Authority will administer this new transportation fund.

Dignitaries including Gov. Lincoln Chafee and the state’s congressional delegation will gather in Providence Monday for groundbreaking on the new Viaduct south replacement project. The viaduct is a nearly 1,300 foot bridge that carries Interstate 95 through downtown Providence.

The Providence viaduct, built nearly 50 years ago, is showing its age.   Wooden boards line the underside of the deck to keep crumbling concrete from falling on cars below. And weight limits would have to be next, said state Transportation Department director Michael Lewis.

The Sakonnet River Bridge

(PROVIDENCE, RI) Governor Lincoln Chafee’s keeping mum on whether he would veto legislation that keeps tolls off the Sakonnet River Bridge. State Rep. John Edwards of Tiverton says he plans to introduce a bill that keeps the Sakonnet Bridge from transferring over to the state’s Turnpike and Bridge Authority.

Edwards calls the toll a tax and says the state should be able to pay for maintenance with general funds. Chafee says the state needs to pay for maintenance somehow and there are no easy decisions.

Sakonnet River bridge under construction
RI Dept. of Transportation

(PROVIDENCE, RI) The public comment period for a plan to put tolls on the Sakonnet River Bridge is coming to a close. Residents have until the end of next week to get their comments in.

The Rhode Island Department of Transportation says it has received 500 pieces of correspondence on the subject.