Saturday, May 11, 2013
Rhode Island Senator Sheldon Whitehouse rebuts "magical thinking" masquerading as religious viewpoint on carbon pollution.
Saturday, May 11
Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) took the floor of the U.S. Senate Wednesday to rebut the remark of a fellow senator, whom, he said, told him God wouldn't allow humanity to ruin the planet with carbon pollution and climate change. "It is less an expression of religious thinking than it is of magical thinking," Whitehouse said. The remark sweeps aside consequences, duty, responsibility and awareness of the issue of climate change, he said. "That is seeking magical deliverance from our troubles, not divine guidance through our troubles," Whitehouse said. The Senator hasn't attributed the remark that spurred the speech, but The Huffington Post reports Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.) recently said he didn't know what humans have done to Mother Nature. In …
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…
Saturday, April 6, 2013
V. Susan Sosnowski and Donald Lally praise first responders for their actions at URI on Thursday.
Saturday, April 6
Release courtesy the Legislative Press Bureau. Rep. Donald J. Lally and Sen. V. Susan Sosnowski, both of whose districts include University of Rhode Island’s Kingston campus, applauded URI and local emergency responders on Friday for their swift and thorough response to the report of a possible gunman on the campus on Thursday. “On behalf of our community, I feel safer seeing how quickly URI’s staff and our local police, fire and rescue crews responded, and how they organized a complete investigation under chaotic circumstances while keeping citizens and students out of harm’s way. We are extremely lucky and grateful that this didn’t turn out to be a shooting, but more than any drill would have, it made me aware of how well our first …