Latest talk among Democratic operatives: Optimism about Elorza in Providence, worry about Raimondo in governor's race. If she loses there will be lots of second-guessing her general election campaign.

The Rhode Island gubernatorial election between Democrat Gina Raimondo and Republican Allan Fung has become much closer than anyone thought even a month ago. Raimondo’s lackluster general election campaign, which followed a very well done primary effort, is surely part of her problem.

Governor Lincoln Chafee and other elected officials will be touring the grounds of Rocky Point in Warwick Friday.  On Saturday the former amusement park land will be open to the public.  This will be the first time in about two decades.

Ian Donnis / RIPR

On a brilliantly sunny recent day at Oakland Beach in Warwick, waves from Narragansett Bay splash against sea rocks, a few sailboats bob in the distance, and scores of people enjoy the chance to be outside.

But the head of Save The Bay, Jonathan Stone, is thinking about a very different kind of situation at Oakland Beach from the summer of 2013. "This beach was closed for half the summer last year," Stone says, "and it wasn’t closed from pollution from Providence. It was closed because of local pollution, a significant source of which is cesspools."

Ian Donnis / RIPR

The primaries are over and now it’s time for the main event. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay parses the Rhode Island campaign for governor.

Rhode Island voters will make history in November by choosing either Republican Allan Fung or Democrat Gina Raimondo as their next governor. Raimondo would be the first woman governor;  Fung would be the first Asian-American.

John Bender / RIPR

T.F. Green airport in Warwick is going international.

The airoport is partnering with the German Airline Condor to offer fights to and from Frankfurt.  This is the first intercontinental flight ever offered at the Warwick Airport.

Flights will be two days a week starting in 2015.  For the first year it will be a seasonal service, starting in June and lasting through about September.

Warwick city officials are hammering out the details of a city budget that’s been at the center of a dispute between the city council and the mayor. Hanging in the balance is the property tax rate that will cover the new budget. Rhode Island Public Radio’s Catherine Welch sat down with Warwick Mayor Scott

Avedisian to find out where the city is in buttoning down the budget,  and what residents can expect on their next tax bill.

Warwick Mayor Scott Avedisian has halted public hearings on a proposed Mayoral Academy Charter School.

Avedisian, who is the mayor sponsoring the proposal, says numerous issues including West Warwick's potential to pull out of the proposal,  preceded the request.

File / RIPR

Federal dollars are heading to Warwick to relocate ball fields as part of TF Green’s runway expansion.

The ball fields at Winslow Park need to be moved so the airport can extend the main runway by a little more than 1,500 feet. That extra stretch of runway will allow for the larger, heavier planes that fly coast to coast and overseas.

The runway expansion has been controversial, with opponents concerned about the effects of noise and air pollution from the larger jets on residents and nearby school children.

There were fewer children in Rhode Island last year with elevated lead levels in their blood. Improvements to housing played a big role in the decline.

Most of the drop in lead levels took place in Providence, Woonsocket, Warwick and Tiverton. In Providence, the city has made sure children couldn’t live in rental homes unless they were certified as lead-free.  Also, the city’s water authority monitored lead levels in drinking water.

Richard Walton was a huge presence in our small state for more than a half century. A writer, journalist, teacher and political activist, Walton, of Warwick, was a leader in so many campaigns for peace and social justice that even his friends and fellow activists could barely keep count.

Garry Bliss / The Providence Center

We had a full house at the Providence Athenaeum last week. If you weren't able to join us, not to worry. You can listen to the full program right here.

Rhode Island Public Radio, in concert with the lovely Providence Athenaeum, hosted a stellar group of panelists for this one hour radio show taped in front of a live audience. Guests included a recovering addict and overdose survivor, an addiction medicine and infectious disease specialist, a drug abuse epidemiologist, a Warwick police captain trained in mental health first aid, and an addiction treatment specialist.

John Bender / RIPR

Meteorologists predict Wednesday’s storm will be quick and hard hitting. Glenn Field with the National Weather Service said the snow will hit around 4:00 am and start coming down hard during the morning commute, “maybe one to perhaps two inches per hour, for about four or five hours during that rush hour period,” said Field.

A list of closings and parking bans can be found here.

Warwick Police Seek Help From The Public

Jan 22, 2014
Warwick Police

Warwick police are releasing new information about a murder that took place in a public park last spring.

Now they are hoping the public can help.

On May 17th 2013 John Fay was murdered while jogging through Warwick City Park.

Near the scene of the crime police found a ten inch, two-and a half pound sledge hammer.

They’ve now released photos of the hammer, in the hope that the public can help identify the owner or provide any other information about the tool.

One way to reduce your carbon footprint is to donate or repurpose your old clothes and other rags. Textile recycling has a greater impact on reducing greenhouse gas emissions than you might think.

Representatives with the nonprofit Secondary Materials and Recycled Textiles said clothing and textiles are not typically considered recyclable products. But they estimate 95 percent of all clothing and other household textiles can be recycled and repurposed, as long as they are clean and dry.

The public has a chance to weigh in this 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.There are 23 projects seeking funding.