Friday, May 3, 2013
A bill legalizing same-sex marriage passed 56-15.
About 16 years after legislation was initially introduced in Rhode Island, same-sex marriage is now legal in the Ocean State. On Thursday afternoon, the Rhode Island House of Representatives passed the legislation with a vote of 56-15, which follows approval in the Senate. "This is a great day in Rhode Island, not just for the many Rhode Island families who will now get the recognition and equality that they so richly deserve, and not only for the thousands who have been fighting for decades for the dignity and rights of all citizens," said House Speaker Gordon Fox, the first openly gay House Speaker in the nation who has cosponsored the legislation every year. "It is also a wonderful day for the generations of future Rhode Islanders who …
Sen. James Sheehan says that name change of the Rhode Island EDC is only the beginning.
To the editor, This time, it has to be different. Economic development in Rhode Island – attracting and growing businesses, creating good jobs for our citizens, improving our state’s overall fiscal climate – is not just about changing an agency’s name or doing a public relations campaign. With national reports, statistics and surveys essentially telling business to think twice about operating in Rhode Island, our state’s response must be dramatic and comprehensive and sustained. There is enormous focus this legislative session on improving Rhode Island’s ailing economy and erasing the state’s anti-business aura. Coupled with the Rhode Island Senate’s introduction early this year of the “Moving the Needle” package of business-friendly, …
Wednesday, May 1, 2013
Senator Sheldon Whitehouse will speak to South Kingstown seniors at 11:30 a.m. Thursday.
- POLICE & FIRE
Wednesday, May 1
Release courtesy the office of U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse. On Thursday, U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse will visit the South Kingstown Senior Center to hear from local seniors and to discuss his efforts to prevent cuts to Social Security. The event starts at 11:30 a.m. In particular, Whitehouse will discuss his opposition to the so-called “chained CPI” proposal included in the President’s budget. If implemented, the proposal would reduce annual cost-of-living adjustments for Social Security recipients. Whitehouse, who is a founding member of the Senate’s Defending Social Security Caucus, has built a strong record of advocacy for Rhode Island seniors. He is a cosponsor of the Keeping Our Social Security Promises Act, which would …
Saturday, April 27, 2013
Recent goings on at the Rhode Island State House. Good times?
Saturday, April 27
Here are the highlights from news and events that took place in the General Assembly this week. For more information on any of these items visit http://www.rilin.state.ri.us/News/. § Senate approves same-sex marriage bill In a 26-to-12 vote, the Senate approved legislation allowing same-sex couples to marry in Rhode Island, effective Aug. 1. The bills (2013-S 0038A, 2013-H 5015B), sponsored by Sen. Donna M. Nesselbush (D-Dist. 15, Pawtucket, North Providence) and Rep. Arthur Handy (D-Dist. 18, Cranston), still have to clear an additional House vote before they can be sent to the governor. That vote is tentatively expected Thursday, following a Judiciary Committee vote on Tuesday. § House leaders unveil economic development package…
Tuesday, April 23, 2013
A Senate vote may take place as early as Wednesday.
Rhode Island took one step closer to the legalization of same-sex marriage on Tuesday following the Judiciary Committee passage of a bill that would allow gay couples to marry in the state. With little debate, the 10-member Senate committee, which includes Sen. Lou Raptakis of Coventry, voted 7-4 to pass the amended Senate Bill 38 (S38), sponsored by Sen. Donna Nesselbush (D-Pawtucket). The bill defines marriage as "the legally recognized union" of two people, regardless of gender. The seven Committee members who voted in favor of the bill include Sens. Stephen Archambault, William Conley, Dawson Hodgson, Paul Jabour, Erin Lynch, Nesselbush and Raptakis. Committee Chairman Mike McCaffrey, Sens. Frank Lombardi and Harold Metts, and Senate …
Monday, April 22, 2013
Here are the highlights from news and events that took place in the General Assembly this week. For more information on any of these items visit http://www.rilin.state.ri.us/News/.
Monday, April 22
Efforts ongoing to address Central Coventry Fire District financial problems The financially troubled Central Coventry Fire District will be able to provide emergency services for several more weeks, the result of a $300,000 loan from the Town of Coventry. The loan was approved to allow additional time for General Assembly action on legislation that has been introduced in both the Senate and House of Representatives to address the situation. A number of bills have been introduced in both chambers by several Coventry legislators, including Sen. Leonidas P. Raptakis (D-Dist. 33, Coventry, East Greenwich, West Greenwich), Rep. Patricia L. Morgan (R-Dist. 26, West Warwick, Coventry, Warwick) and Rep. Scott J. Guthrie (D-Dist. 28, Coventry). …
Sunday, April 14, 2013
Here are the highlights from news and events that took place in the General Assembly this week.
Sunday, April 14
Release courtesy the Legislative Press Bureau. Nine-bill gun safety package unveiled House Speaker Gordon D. Fox, Senate President M. Teresa Paiva Weed, Gov. Lincoln D. Chafee, Attorney General Peter F. Kilmartin and State Police Superintendent Col. Steven G. O’Donnell addressed a State House news conference to unveil a nine-bill package of gun safety legislation. The bills are intended to improve gun safety and strengthen existing laws dealing with firearms violations. Among other things, the bills call for a ban on the sale of assault weapons, require national criminal background checks and create a task force to review laws related to mental health and substance abuse issues as they pertain to firearms statutes. Click here to see news …
Wednesday, April 10, 2013
Legislation introduced by Larry Valencia, and co-sponsored by James Sheehan, would establish an inspector general in Rhode Island with subpoena powers.
Wednesday, April 10
Release courtesy of the Legislative Press Bureau. Rep. Larry Valencia (D-Dist. 39, Richmond, Exeter, Hopkinton) held a press conference today on his legislation that would create the Office of the Inspector General – an independent way to promote good government and reduce waste, fraud, mismanagement and corruption. For its small size, Valencia said Rhode Island has seen more than its fair share of corrupt governmental practices. He pointed to the 2009 audit of the Rhode Island Resource Recovery Corporation, which revealed losses of $75 million due to mismanagement in the state’s trash agency. However, the financial loss was not revealed until it was too late to prosecute anyone. Under the provisions of Valencia’s legislation (2013-H 5363…
Thursday, April 4, 2013
Former Dist. 2 congressional candidate Michael G. Riley, 56, is charged with resisting arrest and drunken driving early Wednesday morning in Narragansett.
Unless otherwise noted, information about the following incidents was supplied by the Narragansett Police Department and files at Fourth Division District Court in Wakefield. An arrest does not indicate a conviction. Michael G. Riley, 56, of 444 Ocean Road, Narragansett, a former Dist. 2 republican nominee for Congress, was arrested at about 2 a.m. Wednesday by Narragansett police and charged with drunken driving and resisting arrest, both misdemeanors, and cited for refusing to submit to a chemical test. According to Narragansett Police Department reports, patrolman James M. Fitzgerald was monitoring traffic from the parking lot of Maridee Bait and Tackle at about 1:45 a.m. Fitzgerald wrote that he saw a grey Lexus traveling south on …
Thursday, March 28, 2013
A bill that stiffens penalties for drunken driving charges with children in the car has passed the Rhode Island Senate, and now heads to the House.
Thursday, March 28
Release courtesy of the Legislative Press Bureau. On Wednesday, the Senate today approved legislation sponsored by Majority Whip Maryellen Goodwin to stiffen penalties for adults who drive under the influence with a child in their vehicle. “Driving under the influence is a serious offense, but it rises to a new level of danger when it endangers a helpless child. People who drive drunk with a child in their cars are committing a much more serious crime than DUI, and they deserve a much more significant sentence,” said Senator Goodwin (D-Dist. 1, Providence). “This bill sends a message that putting a child’s life at risk in this way will not be tolerated in Rhode Island.” Current Rhode Island law allows those convicted of DUI who committed …