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1540 WADK.com Updates Archives for 2014-03

Health Source RI deadline today


Today is the enrollment deadline for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act through HealthSource RI, despite a federal extension announced last week. Because Rhode Island operates its own insurance exchange web site rather than depending on the federal government, it can set its own deadlines. Enrollees must complete their application and select a plan by 11:59pm tonight, and pay by April 23rd, for coverage that begins May first.

Flood warning


A flood warning is in effect for the Pawtuxet River in Kent and Providence counties until tomorrow night, or until it's canceled. The river's flood stage is nine feet and it was already over that stage by yesterday morning due to heavy weekend rain. The National Weather Service expects it will rise through at least ten feet before it recedes. A flood warning is in effect for the Pawcatuck River in Westerly until tomorrow. It was already over the flood state of seven-feet yesterday morning. 

Port of Davisville


The Port of Davisville gets its first shipment of Hondas today.  According to the Journal, Senator Reed will be among the officials with the Quonset Development Corporation to witness the delivery.  The federal government is sending 100 million dollars to Quonset for upgrades on roads, bridges, piers and freight rail. 

New Speaker's goal


New Speaker Nicholas Mattiello is pledging to unify the House.  He says every member will have a voice as to what bills get to the floor for a vote.  He was elected speaker last week when Gordon Fox resigned the position after state and federal investigators raided his State House office and Providence home. 

D.N.A. samples for violent crimes


Rhode Island is moving closer to a law requiring a DNA sample from anyone arrested for a violent crime.  The Senate has passed a bill that has the support of Attorney General Peter Kilmartin.  Current law requires a DNA sample only after a person is convicted of a felony.  The bill passed yesterday goes to the House for its consideration.

Gang threat at A.C.I.


The Department of Corrections is investigating what a spokeswoman says was an anonymous death threat against a correctional officer.  The threat prompted a lock down of the maximum security unit yesterday while a weapons search was conducted.  No weapons were found.  The guard's union, however, says the inmate who made the threat has ties to a "notorious gang."  The union also says the inmate threatened retaliation against other corrections officers in the community.    

West Greenwich heroin bust


State Police received a tip that a female traveling from New York to Rhode Island would be carrying a large amount of drugs, the date and time she would be in the area and the vehicle she would be driving.  A trooper from the Hope Valley State Police barracks was on patrol on 95 in West Greenwich when he spotted the vehicle.  Ada Almonte of Rhode Island was arrested with 11 ounces of heroin worth over 31,000 dollars. 

Tiverton bomb threat


A Tiverton teen has been arrested for a bomb threat he allegedly made to Tiverton High School.   The threat was made on toilet paper in a bathroom.  18 year old Alexander Wahl posted 10,000 dollars bail. 

Coventry contractor arrested


A contractor from Coventry has been arrested for the misappropriation of over 90,000 dollars in client funds.  The State Police Financial Crimes Unit claims clients gave money up front to Scott Ferguson and he did not complete the projects.  He’s also accused of passing a bad check.

New Speaker of the House making changes


New House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello is moving quickly to make committee assignment changes.  Those who supported his rival, Representative Michael Marcello, are being replaced.  Mattiello became speaker on Tuesday after Gordon Fox resigned. 

 

Mattiello has appointed Leo Skenyon as his Chief of Staff.  The Journal reports Skenyon is a long-time traffic court clerk and started his political career as deputy press secretary for Claiborne Pell.

A.C.I. investigation


State police are investigating possible misconduct by staff at the ACI. The director of the Department of Corrections says he ordered the investigation.  Earlier this month four prison staff were placed on administrative leave as part of an internal investigation over an alleged seance.

South Kingstown senator's bill on calamari


It’s not just a trivial novelty.  That’s the message from those supporting legislation that would make calamari the state’s official appetizer.  Senator Susan Sosnowki from South Kingstown and Representative Joseph McNamara of Warwick are sponsoring similar bills to call attention to the actual economic impact of calamari and the fishing industry.  According to the Journal, the assistant to the director at the state Department of Environmental Management, Robert Ballou says they support the proposal. 

Bristol County health


The annual County Health Rankings rate Bristol County as the healthiest area of Rhode Island.  The rankings from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation are based on more than two dozen factors.  Those factors include smoking, high school graduation rates, employment, physical inactivity, and access to healthy foods.

Infections in hospitals in R.I.


The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says you are more like likely to get some kinds of infections in a Rhode Island Hospital than other parts of the country.  The details were just released in the Healthcare Associated Infections Progress Report. 

School bus accident in Portsmouth


3 children were taken to Newport Hospital this morning after a snow crashed into a school bus in Portsmouth.  The snow plow did not stop at the end of Middle Road and hit the bus at the intersection of Union Street.  The student's injuries were considered minor.  The rest of the students were transferred to another bus.

New Speaker of the House in R.I.


Cranston Democrat Nicholas Mattiello is the new speaker of the Rhode Island House.  He says his priorities will include economic stimulus and job growth.  Mattiello's election by an overwhelming roll call vote yesterday comes after state and federal investigators raided the State House office and Providence home of now former Speaker Gordon Fox last Friday.   Neither investigators or Fox have commented on the status of the investigation. 

Senator Reed challenger has setback


A federal judge is denying a request from a would-be U.S. Senate candidate for a temporary restraining order. Republican Raymond McKay is a Warwick city employee who has been planning to challenge Democratic Senator Jack Reed in the November election.  But the judge says Warwick has the right to enforce an ordinance that prevents classified city employees from running for office. 

State Senator apologizes for "F" bomb


A state Senator is apologizing for shouting an obscenity at a gun-rights activist during a recent State House event.  Cranston Democrat Joshua Miller and the gun-rights supporter had a brief confrontation following a news conference in support of legislation to ban the sale of semi-automatic weapons and other gun safety measures.  Miller says despite the emotions of the moment, it does not justify the language he used.  

Newport School budget


This year’s Newport School Department’s budget is on the agenda for tonight’s city council meeting.  Communications from Superintendent Colleen Burns Jermain and Dr. Charles Shoemaker, Chairman of the Newport School Committee, are expected.   

Red Sox trophy coming to R.I.


The Red Sox World Series trophy is coming to Providence.  It will be on display at the Rhode Island Home Show at the Convention Center from 7:30 to 9 p.m. on Thursday evening April 3rd.  People will have the chance to have their picture taken with the trophy.

Portsmouth fire


The Portsmouth Fire Department battled a blaze at 49 Hathaway Drive this morning.  Smoke detectors alerted the family of 6 and they all made it out.  The cause of the fire was accidental and is still under investigation. 

"Winter" storm


Forecasters say most of Rhode is going to miss the brunt of a powerful storm packing high winds and heavy snow which is expected to batter Cape Cod and the Islands from late tonight into tomorrow. A blizzard watch is in effect for the Cape and Islands with a winter storm watch for southeastern Massachusetts and Newport County.  Snowfall totals for our area will be around 3-6 inches.

Gordon Fox makes it official


Gordon Fox has submitted a letter of resignation to the Secretary of State officially stepping down as Speaker of the Rhode Island House.  On Friday his State House office and his Providence home were raided by state and federal investigators.  Fox says he will represent his district through the end of the year, but he will not seek re-election.  Both state and federal authorities are declining comment.

Vote today for R.I. Speaker of the House


The vote for the new Speaker of the House is today.  Majority Leader Nicholas Mattiello and House Oversight Chairman Michael Marcello are vying for the top spot. 

Speaker's Chief of Staff resigns


Rhode Island Speaker of the House Chief of Staff Frank Anzeveno is retiring.  After Gordon Fox stepped down, Anzeveno cleaned out his office this weekend and issued a statement Monday.  The Journal reports that he knew for a while that Fox would not seek another term and anticipated a new Speaker of the House would be bringing in new staff. 

Jack Reed challenger waits for results of court hearing today


There is a federal court hearing this afternoon on a challenge to a city ordinance in Warwick.  The ordinance bars "classified" city employees from seeking elected office.  Republican Raymond McKay works for the city and says he intends to run against Democratic Senator Jack Reed.  McKay says he's hopeful the court will protect his rights as an American citizen.  

2 vying for Speaker of the House post


Two powerful Democrats are claiming they have the votes to be the next House Speaker. Majority Leader Nicholas Mattiello and House Oversight Chairman Michael Marcello are vying for the top spot.  Mattiello emerged from a closed-door meeting with representatives last night saying he's confident about tomorrow's election.  The scramble for the job follows the weekend announcement that current Speaker Gordon Fox is resigning.   Fox is stepping down from the Speaker position in the aftermath of a raid Friday on his State House office and Providence home by state and federal investigators. 

Matunuck sea wall


The state Coastal Resources Management Council had approved a wall to protect against erosion on the South Kingstown shore two years ago.  But now, concerns are being raised about the environmental impact along Matunuck Beach Road.  According to the Journal, the council will have to take another look after a Superior Court Judge ruled those concerns had not been sufficiently addressed.

Newport school year


The Newport School Committee will be discussing the 2014 fiscal year budget at their next meeting.  Tomorrow night they will also get updates on the early learning center and the school year calendar.

New flu strain in R.I.


The state Department of Health is warning about a flu strain that is causing more severe illness especially affecting the elderly. The H3 strain is different from the H1N1 strain that has been most common this season. The H3 strain caused the death of an 89-year-old man in a nursing home late last week.

Lifesaver Award for saving Pell Bridge would-be jumper


Governor Chafee will present certificates of promotion to 32 members of the state police tonight at Rhode Island College. One trooper and 2 citizens are being recognized with the Lifesaver Award for their efforts in saving a suicidal person from jumping off the Newport Pell Bridge in April 2013.

Gordon Fox resigns post as Speaker of the House


Rhode Island Speaker of the House Gordon Fox has resigned as Speaker after law enforcement raided his home and office on Friday.  He wants to finish his term for District 4 but will not seek re-election. 

Speaker Fox has office and home raided by law enforcement


Rhode Island House Speaker Gordon Fox had his office and home raided by federal and state law enforcement today.  The Journal is reporting authorities were handling containers labeled evidence.  A spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s office confirmed the F.B.I. and the I.R.S. are involved and the state police executed federal search warrants. 

Rhode Island TV Stations ownership change


WJAR TV and WPRI TV will soon be owned by the same company.  The Wall Street Journal reports the Media General is buying LIN Media for 1.6 billion dollars.  There is no word yet which station will be spun off.  

R.I. unemployment down


Rhode Island’s unemployment rate is down for the third straight month.   The February rate was 9 percent, that's a drop of two-tenths of a percentage point from January according to the state Department of Labor and Training.  The national unemployment rate last month was 6.7 percent. 

Rhode Islanders warned of scam


Rhode Islanders are being warned about a possible medical scam.  A caller claiming to be with a "medical compensation company" or from the state department of health asks questions about a recent surgery and seeks personal information.  State officials say the caller refuses to provide a company name or contact information and hangs up if questioned.  People are reminded not to give out any personal information and report any such call to the attorney general's Consumer Protection Unit.

Sakonnet toll extension


The Rhode Island full House and Senate voted yesterday to extend the Sakonnet River Bridge 10 cent toll to May 15th.  David Darlington from the Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Authority says the extra time could be used to look for a permanent solution.  The authority agreed to the extension.

Chafee to make EDC name change official


Legislation to rename the Economic Development Corporation as the Rhode Island Commerce Corporation awaits Governor Chafee's signature.  The name change actually took effect on January 1st, but the Chafee administration determined that "technical clarifications" were needed to protect some of the more than 17 million dollars in federal grants the agency administers. 

State and local police step up enforcement


State and local police will be stepping up enforcement in the “Click it or Ticket” campaign next week.  The extra effort will be funded by money from R.I. Department of Transportation Office on Highway Safety from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Roger Williams University gets grant


Roger Williams University will receive a 145,000 dollar grant from the Rhode Island Office of Higher Education.  The money will go towards a partnership with the public schools in Providence to improve math for English Language Learners.  According to the Journal, 5 elementary schools will be affected.

State and local police stepping up enforcement


State and local police will be stepping up enforcement in the “Click it or Ticket” campaign next week.  The extra effort will be funded by money from R.I. Department of Transportation Office on Highway Safety from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

R.I. Turnpike and Bridge Authority agrees to new deadline


The Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Authority has agreed to extend the legislature's deadline from April 1st to May 15th for an alternative funding plan. The authority also voted yesterday to raise tolls on the Newport Pell Bridge if the General Assembly blocks a toll increase on the Sakonnet River Bridge. 

H.U.D. money coming to R.I.


The Housing Authorities in Newport, Pawtucket, Providence and Woonsocket will be the biggest recipients for money coming from H.U.D.  WPRI TV reports 12.6 million dollars is coming to Rhode Island from the federal government for public housing.

Monster Shark Tournament wants to come to Newport


The Newport City Council will hear from the Boston Big Game Fishing Club at the next council meeting.  They hope to bring the 28th annual Monster Shark Tournament to Casey’s Marina in July.   

Governor Chafee vacation time


Governor Chafee is going to the Democratic Governors Association's Ski Weekend in Big Sky, Montana.  A spokeswoman says there will be two roundtable discussions, one focused on energy and the other on nutrition. The spokeswoman says Chafee is using vacation time and that all expenses are being paid by the DGA. 

NUWC mathematician honored by the Navy


Richard Thornton at the Naval Undersea Warfare Center in Newport has been named the winner of the Department of the Navy Test and Evaluation Award in the Small Program Outstanding Tester category.  The Portsmouth mathematician is the alteration installation team manager and test director for several submarine projects.  

Jobs coming to North Kingstown


A food company that makes sandwiches and other ready-to-eat products for more than 175 companies including 7-Eleven and Starbucks, is moving its regional operations to the Quonset Business Park in North Kingstown.  Greencore USA says the new facility will initially employ 370 people when it opens in the spring of 2015.  Governor Chafee's office says construction on the new facility will start soon. 

Sakonnet River Bridge saga continues


The Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Authority said it would return the Sakonnet River Bridge and the Jamestown Bridge to the state and raise the toll on the Newport Bridge if the tolls on the Sakonnet River Bridge were not raised by April 1st.  The state Senate Finance Committee voted unanimously yesterday to extend the deadline to May 15th.   According to the Journal, State Rep. John Edwards of Tiverton is recommending the House Finance Committee should do the same. 

 

The House Finance Committee is reviewing legislation that would provide funding alternatives for roads and bridges.  The transportation infrastructure option could raise 1 billion dollars over 10 years according to bill sponsors.

PC Friars sexual assault scandal


As the Friars get ready for tournament play, Brandon Austin and Rodney Bullock are the subjects of sexual assault allegations by a female PC student.  The Wall Street Journal is reporting Providence Police are investigating.

Health Source RI social media campaign


Healthsource RI is now targeting uninsured young adults between the ages of 22 and 33 via social media.   The so-called Nag Tool Kit teaches parents how to connect with their kids via Snapchat videos, Tinder, OK Cupid, tweet or vine videos to encourage them to enroll for health insurance. 

Zombies in Kennedy Plaza


Teenage Zombies will wander around Kennedy Plaza in Providence this afternoon.  They will be walking examples of the effects of tobacco-related disease according to the state Department of Health.  The Zombies will give smokers cessation resource guides and stress the dangers of tobacco.

Gun control


Gun control advocates are pushing for passage of a proposed ban on the sale of assault weapons and high capacity magazines in Rhode Island.  The House Judiciary Committee will consider the proposed ban and several other gun-related measures this afternoon.  Representatives of several groups say they will be at the State House to lobby for what they describe as sensible gun safety reform.

Newport Fire UPDATE


A fire in Newport around 11:30 last night has claimed the life of a 33 year old Newport man.  WPRI TV reports a truck caught fire near Andrews Express and Storage Warehouse on Fir Street.  The cause of the fire is under investigation. 

McKay delays announcement for campaign


Would be Republican U.S. Senate candidate Raymond McKay is delaying the official start of his campaign to unseat Democrat Jack Reed.  He's seeking a restraining order to protect his job as a city employee in Warwick.  An ordinance prohibits classified city employees from running for elected office.  McKay argues the ordinance is unconstitutional. 

NECAP replacement


The state will give a trial run to a new testing program for high school students.  The Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers is intended to replace the NECAP next year.  According to the Journal, the field test starts next week and will evaluate the program.   

Seal found on street


Police are investigating the discovery of a dead seal on a street in Providence.  Authorities responded to Evergreen Street yesterday morning.   A sign was left with the marine mammal that said, "Free Seal To a good home, Naps a lot, Housebroken."  The carcass of the young seal was taken to the Mystic Aquarium. 

Sheldon Whitehouse back from Ukraine


Senator Sheldon Whitehouse is back from a quick trip to Ukraine.  He was part of a bipartisan Senate contingent.  Whitehouse says the United States should take steps to punish Russia if President Vladimir Putin continues his aggression against the former Soviet republic.  Yesterday, voters in Ukraine's Crimean region voted overwhelmingly to become part of Russia.

R.I. woman killed in Syracuse


A Rhode Island woman has been killed in Syracuse.  Rhode Island College professor, Jennifer Cook was walking with her mother when an 86 man driving a pickup truck hit her and her mother.  According to WPRI TV, her mother is being treated for her injuries.  The accident is under investigation. 

Drag racing on Pell Bridge


Two men were arrested over the weekend for drag racing on the Newport Pell Bridge.  State Police caught Marco Basile and Curtis Lussier going 91 miles per hour on the East bound side of the bridge. 

Group wants faster action on Pell Bridge barrier


A group called Citizens United for Bridge Safety is circulating a petition for a permanent barrier on the Pell Bridge.  They are planning on attending the Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Authority meeting on Wednesday. 

Committee looks at toll options


The House Finance Committee will meet tomorrow to review legislation that would redirect money in the state budget to fund bridge maintenance and eliminate the toll on the Sakonnet River Bridge.

Senator Reed is hopeful for unemployment extension


Senator Jack Reed says there is a deal to reauthorize emergency unemployment benefits for five months.  The plan will allow for retroactive payments to eligible beneficiaries going back to December 28th.  Reed says he's confident the Senate will pass the bipartisan bill he's co-sponsoring.  Some eight-thousand Rhode Islanders lost coverage when the benefits were cutoff in late December. 
 

Sheldon Whitehouse going to Ukraine


Senator Sheldon Whitehouse is heading to Ukraine amid growing uncertainty over the fate of the country's Crimean region.  Russian troops have taken control of the area and voters will decide on Sunday whether they want to become part of Russia.  Whitehouse is traveling as part of an eight member Senate contingent that will meet leaders of the interim government. 

Jack Reed's challenger has issue with current job


The ACLU says an ordinance that forbids "classified" city employees in Warwick from running for office is unconstitutional.  Raymond McKay who plans to announce his bid for the U.S. Senate next week, says he's been warned he may be fired if becomes a candidate.  An ACLU spokesman says local laws can't stop a person from running for federal office.

Alex and Ani CEO search


The founder of jewelry-maker Alex and Ani is taking over as interim CEO.  Carolyn Rafaelian will take the helm while the company's board of directors searches for a successor to Giovanni Feroce who left abruptly.  She says the company needs a CEO with the vision to lead it into the future.   The Rhode Island based firm generated 230 million dollars in revenue last year.  

Newport St. Patrick's Parade


Newport Police have released an advisory for Saturday’s Saint Patrick’s Parade.  Traffic will be affected from 9am to 3pm along the parade route from Broadway to St. Augustin’s Church.  Here are the details from Lt. Fitzgerald.

 

NEWS RELEASE St. Patrick’s Day Parade 2014 
NEWPORT, RI- Traffic flow and parking in Newport will be affected by the St. Patrick’s Day Parade, which kicks off at 11:00AM on Saturday March 15th, 2014. Traffic will be congested in the downtown area from about 9:00AM to 3:00PM. Parking will be limited. The parade participants will be begin staging on lower Broadway at about 9:00Am, so it is recommended that people coming to Newport to view the parade avoid Broadway. The two best routes into the city with available public parking are:  Westbound on Memorial Blvd, right onto Bellevue Ave. (northbound), left on Church St. and right into the Waterfront Parking lot (situated between Church and Mary St.) Farewell St. south to America’s Cup Ave. and right into the Gateway parking garage.  
Parking is prohibited on the following streets from 5:00AM to 3:00PM. All vehicles parked in restricted areas will be towed: No parking along parade route.  Broadway from Cranston/Equality Park West to Washington Square   Equality Park Place and Equality Park West   Dr. Marcus F. Wheatland Blvd. from Equality Park to Oak St.   Washington Sq. from Broadway to Thames St.   Thames St. from America’s Cup Ave. to Morton Ave.   Carroll Ave. from Morton Ave. to Harrison Ave.   Both sides of America’s Cup  at the Gateway Center  Narragansett Ave between Spring St and Bellevue Avenue. 
During this year’s parade the Newport Police Department will be strictly enforcing City Ordinances (open containers of alcohol in public, noise violations and disorderly conduct, underage drinking) along the parade route and the surrounding areas. The Police Department will have a strong presence to make this a fun, safe and family friendly event.  
Parade Route Parade Begins: Lower Broadway Washington Sq Thames St. southbound XOA to America’s Cup southbound Thames St southbound at Memorial Blvd. Carroll Ave Parade Ends at St. Augustin’s Church
 

Traffic Detours Southbound Broadway diverted onto Marcus Wheatland Blvd southbound at Equality Park. Spring St northbound diverted away from Broadway and up Bull St. to Kay St Westbound Memorial Blvd West diverted northbound on Thames St at the Post Office Northbound Thames St diverted away from America’s Cup up Mill St to Spring St. 

Newport City Hall access


Zach Bastian is paralyzed.  He climbed the steps to Newport City Hall by pushing himself up one step at a time while a friend carried his wheelchair.  NBC 10 reports he did so to deliver his message to the city council about accessibility for all residents. 

Foxwoods in Fall River


Fall River Mayor William Flanagan says Foxwoods Resort Casino has purchased 30 acres in the Fall River.  The parcel is in the South end of the city.  He made the announcement on his Twitter and Facebook feeds.

1 month old baby left alone


State police say a 23-year-old Providence man is facing charges after he left his one-month old son alone at home while he went to a convenience store.  The man was stopped shortly after midnight yesterday and was taken into custody on several outstanding warrants.  Upon arrival at the Lincoln Barracks he told troopers his son was alone in his apartment.  Police found the infant asleep and in good condition.  The baby is in the custody of the state Department of Children, Youth and Families.

Middletown retirement plan


The Middletown Town Council will examine the investment policy statement for the Middletown retirement plan at their next town council meeting.  Also on the agenda for Monday night is the reconstruction of Two Mile Corner. 

Newport traffic advisory


Newport Police have released an advisory for Saturday’s Saint Patrick’s Parade.  Traffic will be affected from 9am to 3pm along the parade route from Broadway to St. Augustin’s Church.  Here are the details from Lt. Fitzgerald.

 

  NEWPORT, RI POLICE DEPARTMENT “Police and Community – Partners in Excellence” Community and Traffic Services Unit Lieutenant William T. Fitzgerald, Jr. Commander  120 Broadway Newport, Rhode Island 02840 Telephone: (401) 845-5726 FAX: (401) 849-0214
N e w p o r t – A m e r i c a ’ s F i r s t R e s o r t   
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                CONTACT: Lieutenant William Fitzgerald 3/6/2014 8:11 AM                                Public Information Officer            401-845-5726 
NEWS RELEASE St. Patrick’s Day Parade 2014 
NEWPORT, RI- Traffic flow and parking in Newport will be affected by the St. Patrick’s Day Parade, which kicks off at 11:00AM on Saturday March 15th, 2014. Traffic will be congested in the downtown area from about 9:00AM to 3:00PM. Parking will be limited. The parade participants will be begin staging on lower Broadway at about 9:00Am, so it is recommended that people coming to Newport to view the parade avoid Broadway. The two best routes into the city with available public parking are:  Westbound on Memorial Blvd, right onto Bellevue Ave. (northbound), left on Church St. and right into the Waterfront Parking lot (situated between Church and Mary St.) Farewell St. south to America’s Cup Ave. and right into the Gateway parking garage.  
Parking is prohibited on the following streets from 5:00AM to 3:00PM. All vehicles parked in restricted areas will be towed: No parking along parade route.  Broadway from Cranston/Equality Park West to Washington Square   Equality Park Place and Equality Park West   Dr. Marcus F. Wheatland Blvd. from Equality Park to Oak St.   Washington Sq. from Broadway to Thames St.   Thames St. from America’s Cup Ave. to Morton Ave.   Carroll Ave. from Morton Ave. to Harrison Ave.   Both sides of America’s Cup  at the Gateway Center  Narragansett Ave between Spring St and Bellevue Avenue. 
During this year’s parade the Newport Police Department will be strictly enforcing City Ordinances (open containers of alcohol in public, noise violations and disorderly conduct, underage drinking) along the parade route and the surrounding areas. The Police Department will have a strong presence to make this a fun, safe and family friendly event.  
Parade Route Parade Begins: Lower Broadway Washington Sq Thames St. southbound XOA to America’s Cup southbound Thames St southbound at Memorial Blvd. Carroll Ave Parade Ends at St. Augustin’s Church
Page 1 of 2
  NEWPORT, RI POLICE DEPARTMENT “Police and Community – Partners in Excellence” Community and Traffic Services Unit Lieutenant William T. Fitzgerald, Jr. Commander  120 Broadway Newport, Rhode Island 02840 Telephone: (401) 845-5726 FAX: (401) 849-0214
N e w p o r t – A m e r i c a ’ s F i r s t R e s o r t 
NEWS RELEASE St. Patrick’s Day Parade 2014 
Page 2 of 2 
Traffic Detours Southbound Broadway diverted onto Marcus Wheatland Blvd southbound at Equality Park. Spring St northbound diverted away from Broadway and up Bull St. to Kay St Westbound Memorial Blvd West diverted northbound on Thames St at the Post Office Northbound Thames St diverted away from America’s Cup up Mill St to Spring St.   
EN

U.R.I. and R.I.C. could merge nursing programs


The state is moving closer to creating a nursing education center in downtown Providence.   The State Properties Committee gave the okay yesterday for the state to negotiate a lease for space in the renovated South Street Power Station.  The goal is to bring the nursing programs of the University of Rhode Island and Rhode Island College together in one place.

Scammers going after National Grid customers


Attorney General Peter Kilmartin is warning of another scam.  There have been incidents of someone calling and claiming to be from National Grid and demanding payment.  One victim of the scam is the Hungry Monkey in Newport according to ABC 6.  National Grid does call customers that are overdue but they do not demand immediate payment with the threat of shutting off the power. 

Bill for indecent images sent to minors


The Senate Judiciary Committee is considering a bill to make it a felony to send indecent pictures electronically to minors.  Supporters say criminal law needs to catch up to technology in order to protect children.  But the American Civil Liberties Union argues the bill is too broadly worded and could endanger free speech.  At the conclusion of a public hearing yesterday the committee decided to hold the bill for further study.

Health Source RI enrollment up


Rhode Island is outpacing expectations for health insurance enrollment.   HealthSource RI says for the week ending March 8th, nearly 20-thousand people have signed-up for health insurance coverage.  Additionally, Medicaid enrollment is at close to 49-thousand.  Health Source RI’s federal funding is in question for 2015.

Bill Clinton coming to Rhode Island


Former President Bill Clinton is coming to Rhode Island next Tuesday.  He will attend a fundraiser for Seth Magaziner, one of three Democrats running for state treasurer.  Magaziner's father, Ira, was a White House adviser to both Bill and Hilary Clinton.   The other Democrats who hope to succeed Gina Raimondo, are former state Auditor Ernest Almonte and former state Treasurer Frank Caprio.

Raimondo proposes jobs plan


The campaigning continues for gubernatorial candidate Gina Raimondo.  She is proposing a plan to create jobs and grow the economy. The Democrat says the global landscape is changing and the state must act quickly to become a high-tech manufacturing leader.  Raimondo says she wants increased collaboration between businesses and higher education, more advanced workforce development programs and more support for manufacturers.

ACLU reports on student suspensions


The Rhode Island chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union says public school suspensions of black students has reached a nine year high. According to the report, Hispanic students have also been suspended at a high rate.   At the same time, suspensions of white students during the 2012-2013 school year was at record low rates. The ACLU says one-third of the suspensions were for disorderly conduct and insubordination/disrespect.

Boston Marathon security


More than 35-hundred police officers are going to be on duty along this year's Boston Marathon route through eight communities.  Local, state and federal agencies have been working on enhanced security plans in the aftermath of last year's deadly bombings near the finish line.  This year's marathon is set for April 21st.

Bill Cosby will do second show in Newport


The demand for Bill Cosby tickets at the Newport Summer Comedy Series is running high.  Organizers have added a second show on Sunday, August 17th.  Joe Rocco says tickets go on sale for the second show on the March 28th.     

2 bodies found in South County


Two bodies were found in different parts of South County over the weekend. The body of a 64-year-old man was discovered yesterday morning on Scarborough Beach in Narragansett. Foul play is not suspected. On Saturday morning, the body of a 53-year-old Providence man was found on the beach at Quonochontaug Breachway in Charlestown.   Authorities say that death does not appear to be suspicious.

Governor Chafee has new advisor


Governor Lincoln Chafee has hired former Department of Environmental Management Director Jan Reitsma as a special adviser for policy and legislative affairs.  Reitsma, who resigned from the DEM in late 2003, begins his new job today.  He has most recently been the executive director of the Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor Commission and superintendent of Roger Williams National Memorial.

Health Source R.I. opens another location


The state health benefits exchange is opening a temporary satellite office today in Warwick. HealthSource RI says the walk-in center on Centerville Road will be open seven days a week until the end of April. People interested in coverage options or enrolling in a plan can make an appointment at the satellite center or just walk-in. More information is available online at healthsourceri.com.

Portsmouth is Heart Safe


At tonight’s Portsmouth Town Council meeting, the town will be presented with their Heart Safe designation from the American Heart Association.  Portsmouth is the first community in Newport County to achieve this status. 

North Kingstown middle-schooler wins state spelling bee


Stephen Landry of North Kingstown has won the state spelling bee.  It’s the second straight win for the middle-schooler and he’s now qualified for the national Scripps Spelling Bee in Washington, DC in May according to ABC 6.

R.I. unemployment down


Rhode Island's unemployment rate for January was 9.2 percent.  That's lower than it was in December.  The state Department of Labor and Training says it's the lowest rate since November of 2008.  Nationally the unemployment rate for January was six-point-six percent. 

Hearing on bridge tolls


The State Senate Finance Committee held a hearing yesterday on a bill that would eliminate the toll on the Sakonnet River Bridge and provide a plan to fund maintenance on roads and bridges.  One of the people to testify against the bill was the Director of the State Transportation Department, Michael Lewis.  According to the Journal, he said it would be difficult to get the money necessary without tolls. 

Jack Reed has a challenger


A Republican has emerged to challenge Senator Jack Reed's bid for a fourth term. Raymond McKay promises a formal announcement of his candidacy within a couple of weeks.  According to his LinkedIn web page, McKay is an Army veteran who has worked for the city of Warwick for more than 21 years

South Kingstown Rep. withdraws bill


A proposed pension settlement bill has been withdrawn, just a few days after it was introduced.  The bill was sponsored by South Kingstown Representative Spencer Dickinson, a vocal critic of House Speaker Gordon Fox.  There has been no explanation yet why he withdrew the bill, which mirrored the proposed settlement in the legal fight over the 2011 overhaul of the state's pension system. 

North Kingstown Senator request denied


Senator James Sheehan from North Kingstown had requested documents from the litigation surrounding 38 Studios.  That request has been denied.  The Journal reports Sheehan was told the information can’t be released until a court rules on the motion. 

Newport Police issue update for St. Patrick's Day Parade


NEWPORT, RI- Traffic flow and parking in Newport will be affected by the St. Patrick’s Day Parade, which kicks off at 11:00AM on Saturday March 15th, 2014. Traffic will be congested in the downtown area from about 9:00AM to 3:00PM. Parking will be limited. The parade participants will be begin staging on lower Broadway at about 9:00Am, so it is recommended that people coming to Newport to view the parade avoid Broadway. The two best routes into the city with available public parking are:  Westbound on Memorial Blvd, right onto Bellevue Ave. (northbound), left on Church St. and right into the Waterfront Parking lot (situated between Church and Mary St.) Farewell St. south to America’s Cup Ave. and right into the Gateway parking garage.  
Parking is prohibited on the following streets from 5:00AM to 3:00PM. All vehicles parked in restricted areas will be towed: No parking along parade route.  Broadway from Cranston/Equality Park West to Washington Square   Equality Park Place and Equality Park West   Dr. Marcus F. Wheatland Blvd. from Equality Park to Oak St.   Washington Sq. from Broadway to Thames St.   Thames St. from America’s Cup Ave. to Morton Ave.   Carroll Ave. from Morton Ave. to Harrison Ave.   Both sides of America’s Cup  at the Gateway Center  Narragansett Ave between Spring St and Bellevue Avenue. 
During this year’s parade the Newport Police Department will be strictly enforcing City Ordinances (open containers of alcohol in public, noise violations and disorderly conduct, underage drinking) along the parade route and the surrounding areas. The Police Department will have a strong presence to make this a fun, safe and family friendly event.  
Parade Route Parade Begins: Lower Broadway Washington Sq Thames St. southbound XOA to America’s Cup southbound Thames St southbound at Memorial Blvd. Carroll Ave Parade Ends at St. Augustin’s Church

Traffic Detours Southbound Broadway diverted onto Marcas Wheatland Blvd southbound at Equality Park. Spring St northbound diverted away from Broadway and up Bull St. to Kay St Westbound Memorial Blvd West diverted northbound on Thames St at the Post Office Northbound Thames St diverted away from America’s Cup up Mill St to Spring St.   
 

Ukraine crisis topic at Brown University


The crisis in the Ukraine was the focus of a panel discussion at Brown University yesterday.  Robert Legvold from Columbia University told Brown students that the action of Russian President Vladimir Putin in the Crimean Peninsula is the most significant political development in their lives.  The Journal reports that Brown is planning more discussions in the near future.  

Raimondo gets another endorsement


State Treasurer Gina Raimondo has picked up another endorsement in her run for governor.  Former Providence State Senator Myrth York says Raimondo understands the challenges Rhode Islanders face every day.  York was unsuccessful in three attempts to be elected governor in 1994, 1998 and 2002. 

Treasurer in Middletown


Gina Raimondo was in Middletown yesterday trying to connect Rhode Islanders with unclaimed money.  The Treasury's Unclaimed Property Division has found nearly $12 million in life insurance proceeds for more than 9,000 Rhode Islanders.

Department of Labor and Training is hiring


The state Department of Labor and Training is hiring more staff.  The department received more federal funding than expected, which allows for the re-hiring of staff who had been laid off.  Director Charles Fogarty says nine part-time employees will also be hired this month.  DLT has been frequently criticized for long wait times on the phone for those trying to file unemployment claims. 

Charlestown Police make cocaine bust


William Lamphere was taken into custody in a joint effort by Charlestown and Westerly police.  He was wanted on 3 counts of delivery of cocaine.  ABC 6 reports he will be arraigned this morning. 

Revenge porn


The Rhode Island House Judiciary Committee looked at a bill yesterday regarding revenge porn supported by state Rep. Donald Lally of South Kingstown.  If it becomes law, it would make it illegal to distribute a sexually explicit photo of someone without their consent.  ABC 6 reports California and New Jersey have already passed similar bills and 13 other states are looking at it.

Marijuana bust in Charlestown


State police arrested two Charlestown residents and seized 19 pounds of marijuana, nearly 100 marijuana plants, and 38-hundred-dollars in cash.  The 48-year-old man and 36-year-old woman face charges including possession of marijuana with intent to deliver.  They are both due back in court next week.

Medical marijuana


A company that helps qualified patients seeking entry into the Rhode Island's medical marijuana program, has been granted an ambulatory care facility license.  The owner of B&B Consulting calls the approval from the state Department of Health "groundbreaking."  There are currently seven-thousand people approved by the Department of Health in the state's medical marijuana program. B&B Consulting has opened an office on Toll Gate Road in Warwick.

Governor Chafee with President Obama today


Governor Chafee will go to Connecticut today to hear President Obama discuss efforts to raise the federal minimum wage.  The governor's of Connecticut, Massachusetts and Vermont will also attend the event at Central Connecticut State University.  The president will then travel to Boston to attend Democratic Party events.

R.I. voters dissatisfied


A new poll finds 82-percent of Rhode Islanders lack confidence in state leaders.  Fourteen-percent describe statewide leadership as good, only two-percent think it's excellent and two-percent are undecided.  The survey of 438 registered voters was conducted by a Cumberland firm on behalf of an initiative called "Job One: Leadership."  The initiative is spearheaded by the Hassenfeld Institute for Public Leadership at Bryant University.

More overdose deaths in R.I.


The death count is now at 56.  The State Department of Health is calling the increase in drug overdose deaths an epidemic.  WPRI TV reports that officials are calling for stronger prevention efforts for drug abuse.

Measles threat


The state Department of Health says a person who was treated at two hospitals in Rhode Island and at a pharmacy in Massachusetts has measles symptoms.  Efforts were being made to contact people who were in the emergency room at Rhode Island Hospital last Friday night, or at a CVS Minute Clinic in North Attleboro late last Friday afternoon.  The person also went to the emergency room at Roger Williams Medical Center.  Anyone who may be at risk and who has not yet been contacted, should call the location where they may have been exposed. 

High School bomb threat


Anonymous threats to kill three students and bomb Scituate High School, led to the arrest of a 17-year-old boy.  Police were first alerted about the threats Saturday night, and school officials and police issued a joint alert system advisory on Sunday.  No explosives were found in the school complex. Investigators say the teen turned himself in at state police headquarters.

Middletown Beach committee seeks input


The Middletown Beach Facility Advisory Committee is having a public hearing tonight at 5 at the town hall.  They are seeking input regarding Second Beach facility recommendations to the Town Council.    

Tennis Hall of Fame inductions


Five people will be inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in Newport this summer.  The class of 2014 will be headed by six-time Grand Slam tournament champion Lindsay Davenport.  Others include the first world champion for wheel chair tennis, a coach, and author and a British broadcaster.  The induction ceremony is set for July 12th. 

Fatal fire in Coventry


A man was pronounced dead the scene of a burning house in Coventry last night.  Authorities say there was no one else in the single family house at the time.  The fire was reported shortly before 7:30pm.

Governor Chafee meets with President Obama


Governor Chafee will be joining other New England Governors when President Barack Obama comes to Connecticut on Wednesday.  They will be showing their support for raising the federal minimum wage to 10.10 per hour.

Raimondo gets new endorsement


General Treasurer Gina Raimondo has picked up the endorsement of the Ironworkers Local 37.  The Journal reports it’s the second trade union to support her gubernatorial campaign.  The Plumbers and Pipefitters Local 51 has already given their endorsement.

More road salt coming


The Rhode Island D.O.T. got a shipment of salt over the weekend but the rest of the delivery is expected on Thursday.

Controversial shark tournament coming to Newport


The Monster Shark Tournament wants to come to Newport this summer.  After 27 years in Oak Bluffs, the event will be held July 17th to the 20th in Newport according to capecodonline.com.  Evan Smith of Discover Newport says that organizers have not received approval from the city.

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