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  • January 23, 2013
    By David Scharfenberg

    Rhode Island's commentariat has given Governor Chafee relatively high marks for his budget proposal.

    The praise has focused, most of all, on the budget's political virtues. After a doomed attempt to broaden the state's sales tax in the early portion of his term - raising the hackles of the business community and many legislators - this was a fiscal blueprint that received a relatively warm reception in the halls of power.

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  • December 28, 2012
    By David Scharfenberg

    This morning, I taped an appearance on WPRI-TV's "Newsmakers" to discuss my recent cover story calling out the biggest problem in Rhode Island public life circa 2012: amateurism.

    The story, among other things, suggested that the part-time General Assembly is ill-equipped to vet the big - and sometimes bad - ideas foisted upon it.

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  • May 16, 2012
    By David Scharfenberg

    As soon as news broke of financial troubles at former Red Sox ace Curt Schilling's 38 Studios video game company, observers began comparing the firm to Solyndra. Former GOP gubernatorial candidate John Robitaille made the analogy just yesterday in an interview with WPRI-TV.

    On the surface, the comparison makes some sense: the Obama Administration invested in Solyndra, the solar energy firm, only to watch it go bust - prompting questions about government picking winners and losers in the private sector.

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  • February 05, 2009
    By Ian Donnis

    090206_geeks_Main1

    The small but growing IT-digital media sector centered around Providence has been one of the bright spots in the local economy. But to what extent can it help the Ocean State to overcome its perennial economic also-ran status?

    Marion Davis takes on the topic in this week's Phoenix:

    Sara Czyzewicz earned a computer science degree at Rhode Island College and a new-media certificate from imedia, proved her Web design skills at the Westin Providence and a local firm — and then promptly left the state, as have thousands of ambitious 20-somethings have before her.

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  • January 20, 2009
    By Ian Donnis

    Sofia and Heiry speaking

    Raising the quality of public education in Rhode Island remains one of the top issues for the future well-being of the state, and a new effort known as Young Voices aims to make students part of the solution.

    Please join us at a huge press conference, as our youth present the results of their extensive survey of the classroom experience of Providence public school students!

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  • January 18, 2009
    By Ian Donnis

    Those looking for big, sweeping changes from the man soon to be our next president may want to consider the following.

    Writing today in the New York Times Book Review, history professor Alan Brinkley takes note of how the American economy, about 35 years ago, "began to move onto a different path .... it began to concentrate income and wealth in the upper brackets .

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  • January 17, 2009
    By Ian Donnis

    In her first in-depth TV interview since formally winning election as Senate president, M. Teresa Weed talks about the budget, economic development, her leadership team, immigration, port development and other topics on WPRI-WNAC-TV's Newsmakers (video here and here). The show is typically broadcast Sundays at 5:30 am on Channel 12, and at 10 am on Fox 64.

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  • January 14, 2009
    By Ian Donnis

    It is timely and all.

    From the Institute:

    Tomorrow, over 200 Rhode Islanders, including local and state policymakers, representatives from nonprofit organizations, labor & religious groups, and Rhode Island citizens will attend the 2009 Budget Rhode Map.

    The state budget is Rhode Island’s most important policy document, yet many Rhode Islanders are in the dark when it comes to how the budget is developed.

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  • January 14, 2009
    By Ian Donnis

    From Rasmussen Reports:

    Most Americans Say Leaders Clueless On The Economy

    Just 37% of Americans are even somewhat confident that their political leaders know what they’re doing as they try to address the nation’s economic problems.

    Of this group, only four percent (4%) are Very Confident they know what they’re doing, according to a new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey.

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  • January 09, 2009
    By Ian Donnis

    Speaking of 2010, General Treasurer Frank Caprio, while steadily deflecting questions about his forthcoming gubernatorial run, continues to dramatically elevate the public profile of his current position.

    Following Governor Carcieri's televised budget address on Wednesday, for example, Caprio commented on WJAR -- an opportunity that came after communications director Tim Gray made the treasurer's availability known to various media outlets.

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  • January 09, 2009
    By Ian Donnis

    Earlier this year, yours truly wrote about some of the back and forth about the state's tourism efforts.

    Next Thursday, the state will be recognized for its efforts in that area. According to the state Tourism Division, RI will be the first state to receive the International Star Diamond Award, "which represents the highest and most prestigious form of achievement in the tourism and hospitality industry."

  • January 08, 2009
    By Ian Donnis

    UPDATE: The video is up here.

    ---------

    Governor Carcieri visited with Tim White, Arlene Violet, and myself this afternoon to discuss his supplemental budget address and a few other odds and ends.

    Some brief highlights from Newsmakers, which should hit the Web later today, and which will be broadcast Sunday, at 5:30 am on Channel 12, and at 10 on Fox Providence:

    Read More

  • January 07, 2009
    By Ian Donnis

    As Governor Carcieri prepares to outline spending cuts tonight, Grow Smart Rhode Island offers this:

    In a letter delivered to the Governor, Grow Smart Executive Director Scott Wolf stated, “With all the uncertainty created by economic conditions these days, there are two things of which we can be certain.

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  • January 06, 2009
    By Ian Donnis

    Big quantities of red ink will remain the focus when the General Assembly resumes business this afternoon, but there's some good news to be found beyond the anticipated election of the first female Senate president, not to mention the first Asian-American leader of a Rhode Island community.

    The folks at Advocacy Solutions sent this out this list as part of a recent holiday greeting:

    Read More

  • December 29, 2008
    By Ian Donnis

    From NeighborWorks Blackstone River Valley:

    What: Town Hall Meeting to create a community-based economic stimulus package

    When: Tuesday December 30, 2008

    Event begins at 6:00 pm

    Where: Chaplin Perez Community Center, 37 Center St. Woonsocket, RI

    Details: We all know that tough times are here.

    Read More

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