Statehouse

Politics
8:24 am
Fri June 6, 2014

House Finance Committee Passes $8.7 Billion Budget

Lawmakers announce plan to zap Sakonnet River Bridge toll. House Finance Chairman Ray Gallison stands at the microphone.
Credit Ian Donnis / RIPR

On a 14-2 margin, the House Finance Committee Thursday approved an $8.7 billion budget for the fiscal year starting July first.  Lawmakers say they hope tax cuts will bolster Rhode Island’s underperforming economy.

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RI News
8:52 am
Fri April 18, 2014

Federal Officials Subpoena Providence City Records In Fox Investigation

Federal authorities have subpoenaed Providence city documents in their investigation of former House Speaker Gordon Fox.
Credit RIPR FILE

There’s another development in the case that led to former House Speaker Gordon Fox’s resignation last month.  Federal law enforcement officials on Wednesday subpoenaed City of Providence records related to Fox.

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General Assembly
9:25 am
Wed March 26, 2014

What The New House Speaker Means For The General Assembly

House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello and his family at the Statehouse.
Credit Ian Donnis / RIPR

An incredible five days at the Rhode Island Statehouse have seen the resignation of Gordon Fox as House Speaker, and Cranston Representative Nicholas Mattiello replace him.  It is expected that many key positions in the House will be changing as well. 

Political Analyst Scott MacKay sat down with Rhode Island Public Radio host Chuck Hinman to discuss what all the changes mean for the legislative session.

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Politics
5:02 pm
Tue January 21, 2014

RI Senate Unveils Plan To Close Skills Gap

Senate President Teresa Paiva Weed and senate leaders roll out legislation to close Rhode Island's skills gap.
Credit Ian Donnis / RIPR

The state Senate on Tuesday afternoon unveiled a new plan meant to close a skills gap in Rhode Island. Senate President Teresa Paiva Weed said the “Rhode to Work” plan is a response to business leaders’ complaints that they’re having trouble finding skilled workers.

The plan calls for creating a single workforce training system; improving adult education; and expanding the number of internships and apprenticeships in Rhode Island.

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Economy
9:04 am
Thu January 9, 2014

Interfaith Vigil At The Statehouse Calls For Lawmakers To Address RI Poverty

Governor Lincoln Chafee at the interfaith vigil on poverty at the Statehouse.
Credit Flo Jonic / RIPR

A coalition of Rhode Island religious leaders is calling on lawmakers to put poverty at the top of their agenda this year.  The plea was issued at a Statehouse rally Wednesday.

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RI News
10:29 am
Wed December 11, 2013

Secular Decoration Adorns Statehouse Alongside Christmas Tree

The 2013 Christmas tree in the Rhode Island Statehouse.
Credit Flo Jonic / RIPR

There’s a new Christmas decoration at the Statehouse this year.  And it’s anything but traditional.

Secularists have placed a banner on the second floor of the Statehouse to celebrate the birth of Rhode Island founder Roger Williams. He was born December 21st, 1603.  The banner was erected by a group called the “Humanists of Rhode Island.” 

According to its website, the banner is intended to be a counterpoint to the various religious displays now scattered throughout the Statehouse and to serve as a reminder that American government is secular by nature and design.

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Arts & Culture
9:05 am
Tue December 10, 2013

Students From Across Rhode Island Bring Music To The Statehouse For The Holidays

Chorus students from West Glocester Elementary School.
Credit John Bender / RIPR

Elementary, middle and high school students from across Rhode Island are storming the State House this month to perform music for the holiday season.

The holiday concerts are part of a series put on by the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts, with up to three or four schools singing in a row, in the Statehouse Rotunda.

Rhode Island Public Radio’s John Bender caught a few of those concerts and has this audio postcard.

Do you have insight or expertise on this topic?  Please email us, we'd like to hear from you. news@ripr.org

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Politics
2:17 pm
Mon December 2, 2013

Gov. Chafee: This Year We’ll Call It A Christmas Tree

This season's statehouse pine is called a Christmas Tree this year.
Credit RIPR FILE

Gov. Lincoln Chafee has had a change of heart over what to call the tree that graces the Statehouse every December.

After coming in for intense criticism for calling the Statehouse tree a “holiday tree,” Gov. Lincoln Chafee is bowing to public pressure to change the nomenclature.

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Politics
3:15 pm
Tue May 7, 2013

Bill Would Give Foreign Nationals a Driver's License

Foreign nationals would be able to get driver’s licenses under a bill being considered by the Senate Judiciary Committee Tuesday afternoon.

One of the cosponsors of the legislation, Democratic Senator Juan Pichardo of Providence, said offering licenses to undocumented residents makes sense.

“By granting a driver’s license for undocumented that will give them the ability to register their vehicles and then pay taxes, therefore having some state revenues,” said Pichardo, “but will also provide a safety measure for many residents.”

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Politics
1:55 pm
Tue April 9, 2013

RI Government "Owners Manual" Available

The 2013 edition of the “Rhode Island Government Owner’s Manual” has been published and is ready for pick-up at the Statehouse.

The 300-page directory is published every two years to reflect the results of the November election. It includes contact information for hundreds of officials, including every member of the General Assembly as well as city and town councils.

The book is available free of charge at the Secretary of State’s office. A searchable, electronic version is also posted on the Secretary of State’s website.

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