Archive - May 2013 - News Article
LINCOLN â€“ Despite all the hubbub about â€śhigh stakesâ€ť standardized testing as a graduation requirement, Education Commissioner Deborah Gist told the Northern Rhode Island Chamber of Commerce Friday, â€śno student in the state will be prevented from graduating if they are truly ready to graduate.
LINCOLN â€“ Table games will be opening at the Twin River Casino sooner than expected, thanks to a smooth effort to complete preparations for the new operation.
The ribbon on the new live gaming tables will be cut following a ceremony beginning at 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday, June 19, according to Patti Doyle, Twin River spokesman.
â€śJuly 1 was our original target and we were able to pull that forward to June 19,â€ť Doyle said.
PAWTUCKET â€” The School Committee held a 6 a.m. emergency meeting on Thursday to handle details involved in ceiling repairs as well as receive an update from an architectural firm on the condition of other older schools in the district.
According to School Committee Chairman Alan Tenreiro, the committee voted to officially approve a contract with Ahlborg Construction to make temporary repairs or adjustments to the ceilings at the Potter-Burns and Nathanael Greene elementary schools.
Governor Lincoln Chafee enters the Board of Canvassers in Warwick City Hall shortly after 10:00 a.m. Thursday to sign a short form switching his party affiliation officially from Independent to Democrat before a hoard of reporters and photographers who had gathered there before his arrival.
PROVIDENCE â€“ Gov. Lincoln Chafee, a former Republican turned Independent who is rated nationally as one of the most vulnerable governors seeking re-election in 2014, plans to announce this morning that he is joining the Democratic Party as part of his quest for a second term.
PAWTUCKET â€”Concerns over possible dangers with the same type of ceilings as the Potter-Burns Elementary School have prompted the closure of the Nathanael Greene Elementary School at least until Monday.
Schools Supt. Deborah Cylke said that an engineering report that she received late Tuesday showed there were concerns about the condition of about a half dozen ceilings in classrooms and in the principal's office at the Greene School. As such, she made the decision on Tuesday night to close that school as well so a contractor can take corrective action.
PAWTUCKET â€” This weekend, work got underway to address the ceilings in the Potter-Burns Elementary School, with a target date of June 3 still on for classes to resume.
Since last Wednesday's incident in which a 6-foot by 10-foot section in a basement classroom gave way, all of the ceilings in the nearly 100-year-old building have been inspected by outside structural engineers and the city's building officials. Now, the immediate solution involves shoring up some of the ceilings with a strapping support system while in other areas, the ceiling material will be removed completely.
WOONSOCKET â€“ Could four-day school weeks be coming to Woonsocket?
Itâ€™s possible, if a bill that passed the Senate last week manages to find its way to becoming law.
Introduced by State Senator Roger Picard (D-Dist. 20, Woonsocket, Cumberland), the bill doesnâ€™t mandate four-day school weeks. But with the stateâ€™s consent, school districts could adopt any sort of calendar they deem fit, so long as the school year provides no less than 1,080 hours of instructional time, the equivalent of the existing 180-day minimum.
S. ATTLEBORO â€“ The old Shawâ€™s store at Bristol Place off Route 1A in South Attleboro near the Pawtucket line is giving way to a new much larger Market Basket store at the same location.
The old building has been torn down and this week steel girders were beginning to frame the planned 80,000-square-foot Market Basket store.
Stephanie Davies, senior land use planner in Attleboroâ€™s Planning Department, said Friday the old Shawâ€™s, which had been closed by the supermarket chain in 2009, was demolished to make room for the new Market Basket development.
The end of school is near, and thereâ€™s no time like the present for teenagers to try to find that summer job.
Lining up work with a private business is one way for teens to fill their free hours but that may not be an easy task given the areaâ€™s still-recovering economy.
There are also community-based jobs â€” funded through local governments, state agencies, or federal programs â€” that may still be available to interested job seekers.
CUMBERLAND â€“ Itâ€™s been 68 years since Wilfrid E. Hebert, 91, returned home from World War II and he has spent much of that time coming to terms with his days as a B-17 crew member flying missions over Europe.
Hebert, an ex-POW and a resident of Flat Street, can tell you what helped him most through his troubled times and also about the things he still grapples with when holidays such as Memorial Day arrive.
Editorâ€™s note: This is the second in a series of profiles of the new leaders of Central Falls, a community emerging from the turmoil of bankruptcy to become a virtual New City, with new officials in place and new goals for the future.
CENTRAL FALLS â€“ Sonia Grace has spent her working life doing whatever she can to help others improve the quality of their lives, and itâ€™s a commitment that continues now that she is chief of staff to Mayor James A. Diossa.
PAWTUCKET â€” The Potter-Burns Elementary School will remain closed next week while workers install bracing to shore up the ceilings throughout the century-old building. Classes are scheduled to resume on June 3, according to Schools Superintendent Deborah Cylke.
The school, at 973 Newport Ave., has been closed since Wednesday afternoon after a section of ceiling in a basement classroom suddenly gave way. No one was in the room at the time, although it is periodically used as an occupational therapy classroom for a couple of students at a time, Cylke said.
PAWTUCKET â€” With the arrival of warmer weather the Pawtucket Police Department announced that officers have resumed patrolling various locations in the city on bicycles. The uniformed patrols began earlier this month in Payne Park and Slater Park.
â€śThese patrols are an important part of our ongoing focus on community policing,â€ť said Police Chief Paul King.
More than a dozen banks from Providence to Pawtucket have been robbed over the past five months, leaving some to wonder if bank robberies have reached epidemic proportions in the Blackstone Valley.
While it may seem like the valley is a hotspot for bank theft of late, Special Agent Greg Comcowich, a spokesman for the FBIâ€™s Boston division, says the recent spate of robberies, which include Mondayâ€™s heists in North Providence and Cranston, and Thursdayâ€™s robbery in Pawtucket, are not an indication of an overall rise in the number of bank robberies in the state.
PROVIDENCE â€“ Proponents of a bill to alter the School Siting Law passed last year say it will strengthen the safety requirements for building schools on former industrial or manufacturing sites.
PAWTUCKET â€” Was it just old age? The reason for the sudden collapse of an original ceiling in the nearly century-old Potter-Burns Elementary School was being investigated by city officials and architects on Thursday as the school remains closed at least until Tuesday.
Theyâ€™re known as The Flying Squadron, an ever-changing group of Uxbridge veterans who have made it a Memorial Day tradition over the past 138 years to visit local schoolchildren with a simple message: The final Monday of May is not just the start of summer vacation season, but a time to honor Americans who died while serving in the U.S. military.
The squadron, which is made up today of 20 town veterans divided into two units, will conduct its 139th consecutive visitation to town schools on Friday to kick off the townâ€™s Memorial Day observances.
PROVIDENCE â€“ Plans for consolidating Cumberlandâ€™s four fire districts are causing a rift in the townâ€™s General Assembly delegation that could delay a merger until next year.
PAWTUCKET â€“ A leading advocacy group for affordable housing released a report today criticizing state government for failing to protect its investments in affordable housing with additional funds for maintenance and operations.
The HousingWorks RI report characterizes affordable housing as an essential component of the stateâ€™s economic development infrastructure. The report, entitled â€śThe Complete Approach to Affordable Housing,â€ť says the state not only needs more affordable housing but should invest more to make sure what it has is sustainable.