Archive - Sep 2011 - News Article
PAWTUCKET â€” An electrical fire that started in an attic displaced about 13 tenants in a four-unit apartment house at 192 Garden St. early Wednesday morning, fire officials said.
The call for the three-alarm blaze came in at around 5 a.m. According to Fire Capt. Steven Parent, the fire burned through much of the roof and caused extensive smoke and water damage throughout the wood frame house.
All of the tenants were able to escape and no one was injured, although two firefighters had to be treated for heat exhaustion, he said.
PAWTUCKET â€” Many of its Pullman car windows are broken or missing and its stainless steel has lost its luster, but Jonathan Savage was still pleased as punch Tuesday afternoon when the antique diner he recently acquired was delivered to his mill complex at 560 Mineral Spring Avenue.
PAWTUCKET â€” Changes to the city's zoning ordinances that are designed to make the downtown more business-friendlyâ€”including one that removes parking requirements-- have been proposed by the Planning Department.
A public hearing on the proposed amendments will be held by the City Council on Wednesday, Sept. 21 at 7 p.m. at Pawtucket City Hall. The City Council could give first passage to the changes that night, and a second vote will be required for adoption.
PROVIDENCE â€” State employees and schoolteachers â€śpossess implied unilateral contract rightsâ€ť to their pension benefits, a Superior Court judge ruled Tuesday, keeping alive a lawsuit challenging previous changes made in state pension laws and further complicating ongoing efforts to make more changes that General Treasurer Gina Raimondo says are necessary to avert a fiscal calamity.
By JIM BARON
PROVIDENCE â€” General Treasurer Gina Raimondo told state senators Monday that she would like to fashion a pension reform plan that would not take benefits away from state employees who have already retired, and thinks she can do it. But she isnâ€™t making any promises.
â€śWe would love to be able get this done without touching accrued benefits,â€ť she said at an informational caucus for the full senate, â€śso if youâ€™ve earned it, itâ€™s yours, and I think that is possible, that is why we are taking so long to carefully go through the numbers.â€ť
PAWTUCKET â€” The owner of a local rug manufacturer said he has grown frustrated with National Grid's slow response to a loss of electrical power at his company â€” and it occurred long before Tropical Storm Irene.
On June 6 at around 11:30 a.m., a transformer located outside a mill complex at 560 Mineral Spring Ave. exploded while in the midst of being repaired by National Grid workers. The blaze that erupted caused damage to a stair tower, windows and a portion of the roof of the 325,000-square foot historic mill complex and disrupted power to 125 tenants.
PROVIDENCE â€“ A huge U.S. flag, held aloft at the entrance to the Statehouse lawn by the extension ladders of a pair of Providence fire trucks, greeted the approximately 100 people who attended the 10th anniversary observance of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on Sunday.
NORTH SMITHFIELD â€” The passage of 10 years hasn't soothed the pain for Aram P. Jarret Jr. and his family but remembering his daughter Amy N. Jarret's caring ways does help them cope to a degree.
Amy was a flight attendant on United Flight 175 out of Boston and died at the age of 28 when terrorists seized the aircraft and flew it into the South Tower of the World Trade Center on the morning of Sept. 11, 2001.
Veterans groups, first responders and civic officials from around the Valley will mark 9/11 with special Masses, prayer services and tributes on Sunday. Here is a roundup of the planned observances, arranged by the community.
â€” The Major Walter Gatchell VFW Post 306 will conduct a ceremony at the post home, 171 Fountain Street, Pawtucket, Sunday at 11 a.m. Coffee and pastry will be served.
PAWTUCKET â€” Under a bright moon and with the Blackstone River gushing mightily over the dam by Slater Mill, hundreds of people ate, drank and danced at the kick-off Gala for the 2011 Pawtucket Arts Festival.
â€śThe weather today has been great, and with so many nights of rain, I think it really energized people,â€ť commented John Baxter, chairman of this year's Pawtucket Arts Festival. â€śThe turn-out has been amazing, and I think the entire event is well put-together to offer a mix of not only food and music but culture as well.â€ť
LINCOLN â€” When the town's six public schools opened Tuesday morning, they did so with teachers and administrators ready to tackle several initiatives the Lincoln School Administration team either adopted new this year or will continue to address.
In fact, some initiatives also have been adopted by the Cumberland and Woonsocket public school districts. Those three municipalities have formed a consortium to institute what's known as the Charles A. Dana Center Project, one based at the University of Texas at Austin.
NORTH KINGSTOWN â€“ The Tea Party Express rolled into Rhode Island Wednesday on two big buses as part of its nationwide â€śReclaiming Americaâ€ť tour.
TPX, as it fashions itself, is a traveling show of conservative politics, leavened with music and comedy, all wrapped up in patriotic Americana. It embarked from Napa, California and has made its way across the midsection of the country â€” â€śwhat the media calls flyover countryâ€ť as one speaker put it â€” to New England and is now southbound for Tampa, Fla., where it is partnering with CNN to sponsor a debate among Republican presidential candidates.
WOONSOCKET â€” A city resident has been ordered held on federal charges stemming from his alleged involvement in a large-scale heroin-trafficking operation.
Andres Jiminez, 37, of 121 Linden Ave., made an initial appearance Tuesday in U.S. District Court, Providence, after investigators seized more than seven kilos of heroin, a kilo of cocaine and $30,000 in cash from a commercial storage facility in Pawtucket over the weekend.
PAWTUCKET â€” It was spinning and weaving that first put Pawtucket on the map as the birthplace of the Industrial Revolution. That's why artist Donald Gerola chose a high-tech and larger-than-life version of â€śtextileâ€ť production as his latest public arts project in the city where he makes his home.
WOONSOCKET â€” For most people, Labor Day is a last call for summer, a chance for one more family cookout or that final great day at the beach.
But at the cityâ€™s Museum of Work And Culture, the holiday was another chance to remember a difficult period of local history, a national textile workerâ€™s strike that came to town in early September 1934 and claimed the lives of two city men in the process.
As part of its Labor Day Open House 2011 program, the Museum staged two performances of Raymond H. Baconâ€™s short play about the strike and its local aftermath.
The Leon Mathieu Senior Center in Pawtucket hosted a Talent Show last week for local seniors. Tony Pandolfo is pictured singing "You Belong to My Heart" by Bing Crosby.
PROVIDENCE (AP) â€” A state legislator charged with misappropriating funds from a life insurance policy on his friend's dead daughter told investigators he used some of the money to pay his business' bills, according to court papers.
State Rep. Leo Medina, a freshman Democrat from Providence, is accused of pocketing $28,000 from a life insurance policy that he was helping his friend cash in. Medina told investigators he paid Alejandro Nico $6,200 to $6,400 but used some of the money to pay bills for his struggling business, according to an affidavit written by a state police detective.
NORTH PROVIDENCE â€” Col. John J. Whiting, the town's police chief and a former Pawtucket Police major, was released on bail but remains suspended without pay following his arraignment on Thursday on felony charges that he stole $714 out of a vehicle involved in a police chase and then asked Pawtucket Police to cover it up.
SCITUATE (AP) â€” The police chief of North Providence was arrested Thursday by state police on felony charges he stole more than $700 out a vehicle involved in a police chase and then asked police to cover it up.
Col. John J. Whiting was charged with larceny over $500 and two counts of solicitation of obstruction of justice after being questioned by investigators, said state police Col. Steven G. O'Donnell.
PAWTUCKET â€” It might seem like an unlikely place for a party, but the Lachapelle Funeral Home has been the scene of several lively and enjoyable post-Irene gatherings.
For three consecutive nights since the storm knocked out the neighborhood's power, Christine Lachapelle-Miller and her husband, Bill Miller, have hosted a large-scale cookout at the funeral home at 643 Main St. in Woodlawn. The couple and their four children also make their home above the family business, which was started by Christine's father, Robert Lachapelle, over 50 years ago.