Archive - Apr 2013 - News Article
PROVIDENCE â On the day that Education Commissioner Deborah Gist delivered her annual State of Education address to a joint session of the General Assembly, the stateâs two major teachers unions released a poll that they say shows teacher morale is âabysmalâ under her leadership and that 85 percent do not want her contract to be renewed.
Despite that, Gist painted an optimistic picture of the stateâs education effort, citing progress in technology, early education and international competitiveness.
LINCOLN â A crowd of players engulfed the craps table as dealer Sam Hasney announced the cutoff for more bets.
âBets set,â he said. âShooterâs looking for four. Four wins.â
âCâmon Nick,â somebody cheered as an oversized pair of red dice tumbled across the green felt pit of the craps deck.
PAWTUCKET â Due to the upcoming privatization of trash services, 19 employees in the city's Department of Public Works received layoff notices on Friday, but city officials say that all or most should be able to land other municipal jobs or a position with the vendor.
PAWTUCKETâA blaze suspected to be arson destroyed a wooden shed at the old Conant Thread Mill complex at 280 Rand St. early Monday morning.
According to Pawtucket Fire Capt. Robert Thurber, the city's fire marshal, firefighters responded to a call at about 2:20 a.m. from a resident of the nearby Coates Manor elderly housing complex, who noticed the blaze.
Thurber said the fire completely destroyed the 12-foot by 18-foot detached shed, which was located on the vacant mill complex that formerly housed the Conant Thread-Coats & Clark manufacturing operations. No injuries were reported.
CUMBERLAND â The townâs plan to merge its four independent fire districts reaches a major milestone Wednesday when the Town Council votes to ask state lawmakers to approve the incorporation of a unified town fire district.
The state-approved incorporation would include the creation of a seven-member interim appointed fire committee by June 30 to govern and manage the finances of the unified fire district until a permanent committee is elected next year.
The council meeting begins at 7:30 p.m. at Town Hall, 45 Broad St.
CUMBERLAND â A family of beavers who faced being trapped and killed for causing tree damage and flooding at Diamond Hill Park has been granted a stay of execution.
After initially stating that he was considering having a local exterminator kill the beavers, Parks and Recreation Director Michael Crawley says that plan has been scrapped â at least for now.
PAWTUCKET â An old dining landmark has been given a new twist as the Le Foyer Club debuts its new Fountain Street Grille.
The first floor bar and dining area of the venerable banquet facility have been given a complete makeover, and the results are a modern, comfortable place to enjoy lunch, dinner and drinks. Sleek new booths, an attractive mural, stylish lighting fixtures and other contemporary dĂ©cor make the Fountain Street Grille an ideal setting for everything from a casual lunch or dinner to late night cocktails and appetizers.
PROVIDENCE â North Smithfield Rep. Brian Newberry branded as âblatant arroganceâ what he called the unwillingness of Twin River executives to explain why the stateâs share of the take from the new table games soon to be installed is limited to 18 percent.
Newberry, the Republican leader in the House of Representatives, was miffed because Twin River representatives who attended a recent hearing declined to speak on a bill he sponsored that would hike the stateâs share to 20 percent, even when he invited them to testify.
PAWTUCKETâWith images still fresh from last Monday's Boston Marathon terrorist attacks, local police and fire officials felt the need to investigate a metal tank-like object found discarded on a sidewalk on Roosevelt Avenue late Friday morning.
According to Pawtucket Police Chief Arthur Martins, a passerby called police at about 11 a.m. to report the presence of a suspicious-looking object that was near an electrical utility box on the sidewalk just north of the Fogarty Manor housing complex and across from 249 Roosevelt Ave. (the former Carol Cable building).
PROVIDENCE â At what point does a general school dress code policy become a strict uniform requirement?
That was one of the questions put to Rep. Agostinho Silva by the House Health Education and Welfare committee when he testified for his bill that would require the Central Falls School District to adopt âa reasonable school-wide dress code policy that requires pupils to wear a school-wide uniform and prohibits pupils from wearing âgang-related apparel.ââ
State Senator Donna Nesselbush (D-Pawtucket) the lead sponsor of the senate's same sex marriage bill, reacts after the senate approves the measure with a vote of 26-12 on the Senate floor late Wednesday afternoon. Final approval is expected next week by the House, when Governor Chafee is expected to sign the bill into law, effective August 1, 2013. (Photo/Ernest A. Brown)
With more than 400 miles of coastline and more than 100 fresh and salt water beaches in Rhode Island, state Rep. Maria Cimini says the time has come to have an open and honest conversation about a statewide ban on plastic bags.
Cimini (D-Providence) says that conversation starts in earnest Thursday when the House Environment and Natural Resources Committee holds a public hearing on legislation she introduced in February to ban plastic bags at store checkouts in Rhode Island.
WEST WARWICK â If you are thinking of making a big-ticket purchase online in hopes of evading sales tax, you might want to hurry.
Just hours after Sen. Jack Reed and Gov. Lincoln Chafee held a press conference Monday morning to promote legislation that would require âremote sellersâ â Internet and catalog retailers â to collect sales taxes for the states where their purchasers live, the U.S. Senate voted 74-20 to pass a procedural motion to go ahead with debate on the legislation.
PROVIDENCE â In what backers are calling âa historic step forward,â Pawtucket Sen. Donna Nesselbushâs bill to legalize same-sex marriage is scheduled for a vote on Tuesday in the Senate Judiciary Committee.
If the bill passes out of committee, it could come to a vote in the full Senate as soon as Thursday. Senate President Teresa Paiva Weed said recently that she expects the measure to get a full Senate vote by the end of this month.
The longer days and milder temperatures of April usually herald the arrival of daffodils, songbirds and short-sleeve shirts. But if youâve been listening lately youâve heard another sign that spring has finally sprung â the rumble of motorcycles on area roadways and highways.
Motorcycle season has arrived in Rhode Island and riders are hitting the roads after a long, cold winter. Itâs a good time, motorcycle safety advocates say, to remind bikers of the importance of getting trained and wearing safety gear, and to urge car drivers to be more aware of motorcyclists.
PAWTUCKET â The Rhode Island Music Hall of Fame (RIMHOF) will hold its 2nd annual Hall of Fame Ceremony and Concert on Sunday, April 28, at the Music Hall of Fame located in Hope Artiste Village, 999 Main St., Pawtucket, RI. The Hall of Fame's nine 2013 inductees are: Steve Smith & The Nakeds, The Cowsills, Paul Geremia, Eddie Zack & The Hayloft Jamboree, Bobby Hackett, Jimmie Crane, Bill Flanagan, Sissieretta Jones, and George M. Cohan.
WATERTOWN, Mass. â A 19-year-old college student wanted in the Boston Marathon bombings was taken into custody Friday evening after a manhunt that left the city virtually paralyzed and his older brother and accomplice dead.
Police announced via Twitter that Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was in custody. They later wrote, "CAPTURED!!! The hunt is over. The search is done. The terror is over. And justice has won. Suspect in custody."
Tsarnaev's brother, 26-year-old Tamerlan, was killed Friday in a furious attempt to escape police.
PAWTUCKET - Former Pawtucket mayor defends his actions regarding pension fund. Full story in Friday's Times.
PAWTUCKET â Despite discussions and individual lobbying for different options, the City Council on Tuesday postponed any decision on a fix for the unfunded police and firefighters' pension plan.
At a special session of the City Council that followed a Finance Committee meeting, the council voted to table its decision on a new funding option that passed by a slim margin. The council will take up the matter at its next regular council meeting that is scheduled for April 24 at City Hall.
PAWTUCKET â The director of two of Rhode Islandâs biggest road races says there are no plans to cancel the races in light of Mondayâs Boston Marathon bomb attack.
Charles Breagy, who directs the Navigant Credit Union Running Festival
Half Marathon and 5K in Pawtucket â scheduled to be held this year on May 5 â and the CVS Caremark Downtown 5K in Providence â slated for Sept. 22 â says the two races will go on as planned.
âThese races are still in place to happen. Weâre revisiting security and weâve reached out to police, but as of today, the races will go on,â Breagy said.