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Steve Conti
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1540 Updates Archives for 2019-02

'The Bachelorette' Eyes Newport For Filming

The next Bachelorette could be bringing her suitors to Newport. Producers of the reality show sent a letter to Newport's City Council, requesting permission to film parts of season 15 at various locations across the city in March.Locations detailed in the letter include the famous Cliff Walk, dinner at the Black Pearl, and a musical performance at Jane Pickens Theater.Other spots eyed for filming are venues like Belcourt Castle, Belle Mer, and Eisenhower House. Producers are also looking into locations in Bristol and Providence.

Candidate Finance System Proposed

A good government group is proposing a public financing system for candidates seeking a seat in the Rhode Island General Assembly. Common Cause Rhode Island says the state has among the least competitive legislative elections in the nation and the ability to raise money is a barrier to quality candidates running for the legislature. Common Cause says it worked with state lawmakers on a bill, which has now been submitted in both legislative chambers.

Ocean State Job Lot Adding Stores

Three former Benny's department store locations are going to become Ocean State Job Lot stores. The company that owns the properties in Cranston, Warwick and the Wakefield section of South Kingstown says they will be renovated. Rhode Island-based Benny's went out of business in 2017.

Hearing Held On Career-Tech Program Restriction Bill

A hearing was held on a bill proposing to limit certain career and technical education programs in Rhode Island on Wednesday. State Representative Evan Shanley, who is sponsoring the bill on behalf of Warwick schools superintendent Philip Thornton and others, says the programs at so-called pathways schools are drawing away students from regional career and technical schools and therefore also drawing away tuition dollars.

Pawtucket Traffic Camera Locations Revealed

Pawtucket officials provided details on plans for a new traffic camera system on Wednesday. The cameras are being installed in school zones and at intersections to get motorists to slow down and stop running red lights. It was also noted at a special meeting yesterday that the cameras will not be on ground-level like the ones in Providence, which have been subject to vandalism.

New Warwick Mayor Delivers State Of The City Address

Warwick Mayor Joseph Solomon carried a pessimistic tone about finances in the first State of the City address that has been given there on Wednesday. Solomon said he anticipates the structural deficit bumping up from seven-and-a-half-million dollars in the current fiscal year to at least twelve-million in the next one. Solomon blamed the increase on the practices of the former administration led by longtime mayor Scott Avedisian, although Solomon noted he wasn't specifically pointing a finger at Avedisian.

Providence Triple-Decker Home Destroyed By Fire

A huge fire destroyed a triple-decker house in Providence's South Side section on Wednesday night. Crews reportedly arrived to find the house on Providence Street fully involved. The roof eventually caved in. The home was unoccupied, according to fire officials.

Rhode Island Gets Several Inches Of Snow

Rhode Island has received one more round of snow to close out a very busy month of February in terms of winter weather. As of around 1 a.m. the National Weather Service said Barrington and Providence were leading the way with three inches. It's expected to stop snowing by the mid-morning hours. There are more chances for snow this weekend.

State Police Superintendent Approved By Senate Judiciary Committee

A new leader for the Rhode Island State Police is one step closer to officially being able to take the job. The state Senate Judiciary Committee unanimously confirmed James Manni for the superintendent position yesterday, and the full Senate is scheduled to vote on Thursday. Colonel Ann Assumpico announced her retirement as the state police superintendent in December. Manni is a retired state police major and the former town manager of Narragansett.

Vineyard Wind Gets More RI Approval

The state's Coastal Resources Management Council is giving its stamp of approval for the Vineyard Wind energy project. The council voted on Tuesday in favor of Vineyard Wind's application and for the compensation package it has offered to fishermen. Many are still concerned, however, that the eight-hundred-megawatt wind farm off the coast of Martha's Vineyard will have a negative impact on the fishing industry. The wind farm still needs regulatory approval in Massachusetts.

Several More Inches Of Snow Before February Ends

One more round of snow is being squeezed in before we turn the calendar to March. The National Weather Service is calling for three inches to fall in northern Rhode Island, and two inches in the southern part of the state. The snow is expected to begin tonight and last until tomorrow morning.

Plans To Replace The Henderson Bridge

The state Department of Transportation is planning to replace the Henderson Bridge. The span over the Seekonk River connects East Providence to the East Side of Providence. It was declared structurally deficient more than 20 years ago. Federal funding will be used to finance the project, but RIDOT hasn't said when work will begin.

Proposed Change For Handling Some Drug Cases

Attorney General Peter Neronha wants to change the way some drug cases are handled in Rhode Island. He's proposing that possession of small amounts of narcotics be charged as misdemeanors rather than felonies. Neronha also says the goal is to help those struggling with addiction to get treatment.

Federal Funding For Bridges In RI

Millions-of-dollars in federal funding is earmarked for Rhode Island to help upgrade the state's structurally deficient bridges. The funding comes through provisions in a spending bill authored by Senator Jack Reed. A portion of the money will be used to replace the Henderson Bridge, which spans the Seekonk River linking East Providence and the East Side of Providence.

HealthSource RI Reports Enrollment Increase

Rhode Island's healthcare marketplace is reporting an all-time low in the number of uninsured people in the state. Numbers from HealthSource RI on Monday indicated that only three-point-seven-percent of Rhode Islanders were uninsured in 2018, down from four-point-two percent in 2016. HealthSource says individual and family enrollments increased by over 18-hundred. Governor Gina Raimondo said in a statement that the Affordable Care Act is working in the state and noted that over one-million people have health insurance for the first time ever.

Cranston Says It Can't Do Anything About Johnston Wind Farm

The Cranston City Council is telling city residents that there's nothing it can do about a wind farm in neighboring Johnston. The council decided on Monday not to pursue legal action against Johnston over the wind farm near the state Central Landfill. Some residents in Cranston's Alpine Estates area expressed outrage about the turbines going up in December.

School Committee Provides Kickemuit Update

Steps continue to be taken to address safety concerns at Kickemuit [[ KICK-um-EW-it ]] Middle School in Warren. The Bristol-Warren school board announced on Monday that a police officer presence will continue at the school, and a behavioral specialist will be retained. The safety issue was brought into focus last month when a teacher "sick-out" took place, forcing a one-day cancellation of classes.

Wind-Blown Toppled Trees Cause Injuries

A high number of wind-related incidents were reported on Monday in Warwick and West Warwick. Most significantly, firefighters had to free an injured driver from a vehicle that had been in motion when a tree fell on it. Injuries were also reported when a tree limb went through the roof of a house, and another tree reportedly hit some bicyclists. Elsewhere, a utility pole across Allens Avenue in Providence closed the road in both directions yesterday afternoon, while in North Providence, a roof was partially torn off a house, according to reports from the National Weather Service.


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