Ted Nesi

Watch Executive Suite: Citizens Bank CEO Bruce Van Saun

November 27th, 2014 at 2:00 pm by under Nesi's Notes


How RI’s ‘poultry king’ created a Thanksgiving tradition

November 26th, 2014 at 5:04 pm by under Nesi's Notes

RI_turkey_doomed_Hedges_Herald_Nov_18_1913By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Rhode Island’s most famous contribution to Thanksgiving was probably its turkeys – thanks to the efforts of a Westerly farmer named Horace Vose, better-known as “the poultry king.”

Born in 1840, Vose became “known all over the United States as the man who has furnished the Thanksgiving Turkey to every President from Grant to Roosevelt.”

Not all Rhode Islanders have been as enthusiastic about Thanksgiving as Vose, however. Back in America’s pre-revolutionary days, Rhode Island refused to join its fellow colonies in celebrating it.

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Paiva Weed wants statewide teachers’ contract

November 26th, 2014 at 7:50 am by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Senate President M. Teresa Paiva Weed told business leaders this week she plans to consider creating a statewide contract for teachers, a complex – but potentially cost-saving – idea that has been discussed off and on for many years.

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Fox empties 2 political accounts; still has $244K

November 26th, 2014 at 7:49 am by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan & Walt Buteau

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Former House Speaker Gordon Fox has quietly withdrawn funds from two of his political accounts, but he still hasn’t touched the quarter-million dollars that have sat idle in his personal campaign war chest ever since investigators raided his home and State House office in March.

A Target 12 review of campaign finance reports filed with the R.I. Board of Elections shows Fox donated $91,475 to four nonprofit organizations using money in the accounts of the R.I. House Leadership PAC and the Fund for Democratic Priorities, two political action committees whose expenses are typically reserved for campaign donations and consultant fees.

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Providence has spent nearly $400k to follow workers, retirees

November 25th, 2014 at 8:46 am by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan & Tim White

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – The city of Providence has paid private investigators nearly $400,000 over the last decade to trail city employees and retirees it suspects are defrauding taxpayers, Target 12 has learned.

All told, Providence has doled out $375,105 to three Rhode Island investigative firms since 2003, according to a Target 12 examination of city payment records obtained through a public records request.

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Gist wants to keep job as RI education commissioner

November 24th, 2014 at 1:27 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Deborah Gist, who has served as Rhode Island’s commissioner of elementary and secondary education since 2009, is seeking to keep her job under incoming Gov. Gina Raimondo.

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Why Jack Reed doesn’t want to be defense secretary

November 24th, 2014 at 12:23 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – It’s becoming a familiar cycle in Rhode Island: President Obama needs a defense secretary, and national reporters start speculating that U.S. Sen. Jack Reed could get the job. Yet Reed never actually winds up at the Pentagon.

But why wouldn’t Jack Reed – a proud West Point alum and veteran of the Army’s 82nd Airborne Division – want to be in charge of the most powerful military force the world has ever known? There are quite a few reasons.

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Watch Executive Suite: Navigant Credit Union; Benny’s

November 24th, 2014 at 5:00 am by under Nesi's Notes


Gist wants to keep job as RI education commissioner

November 24th, 2014 at 2:28 am by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Deborah Gist, who has served as Rhode Island’s commissioner of elementary and secondary education since 2009, is seeking to keep her job under incoming Gov. Gina Raimondo.

Gist has not met with Raimondo since the Democrat defeated Republican Allan Fung and Moderate Party candidate Robert Healey on Nov. 4, but she told WPRI.com she does want to remain in the position she was appointed to under Republican Gov. Don Carcieri and reappointed to by independent-turned-Democrat Lincoln Chafee.

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Watch Newsmakers: Governor-elect Gina Raimondo

November 23rd, 2014 at 5:00 am by under Nesi's Notes


The Saturday Morning Post: Quick hits on politics & more in RI

November 22nd, 2014 at 5:00 am by under Nesi's Notes, On the Main Site, The Saturday Morning Post

Click here to read this week’s Saturday Morning Post on the new WPRI.com website »


Obama immigration plan ends Secure Communities program in RI

November 21st, 2014 at 2:14 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – A controversial policy aimed at identifying and deporting undocumented immigrant criminals that has long been opposed by the city of Providence will come to an end Friday when President Barack Obama signs his executive order overhauling the nation’s immigration policy.

Part of the president’s sweeping action is to replace the Secure Communities program, an initiative that asks local law enforcement agencies to run the fingerprints of accused criminals against federal immigration databases. During a primetime speech Thursday, Obama said his new Priority Enforcement Program will focus on deporting “felons, not families.”

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Elorza hears residents’ concerns about crime, schools

November 21st, 2014 at 9:14 am by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – He spent the better part of the last year talking. Now Providence Mayor-elect Jorge Elorza is listening.

Just over two weeks after his convincing victory over independent Vincent A. “Buddy” Cianci Jr. in the race for mayor, Elorza held the first of four scheduled “listening forums” across the city Thursday, giving residents the chance to voice their frustration over city issues and make recommendations to the incoming mayor.

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Everything you need to know about Providence’s two new high schools

November 20th, 2014 at 10:22 am by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Eighth-grade students in Providence will have more options when they begin the high school selection process early next year as the city prepares to open two new schools beginning in the 2015-16 school year.

The startup costs for the new schools will be funded by a $3-million grant from the Carnegie Corporation of New York, a 103-year-old foundation whose current president is former Brown University President Vartan Gregorian.

So what are these new schools going to look like? Here’s an overview.

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Chart: Food stamp use finally stops rising in RI after surge

November 19th, 2014 at 1:49 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Rhode Island’s food-stamp enrollment has finally stopped growing after it soared during and after the Great Recession.

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Nellie Gorbea seeks public’s input before taking office

November 19th, 2014 at 1:00 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Secretary of State-elect Nellie Gorbea wants to hear from you before she takes office.

Gorbea on Wednesday unveiled a website for her transition effort, GorbeaTransition.com, as she prepares to take over from term-limited incumbent Ralph Mollis on Jan. 6. The site offers citizens ways to share ideas for the office, apply for jobs there, and sign up for updates.

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RI pension law still in legal jeopardy, 3 years later

November 18th, 2014 at 12:01 am by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Three years ago today, Gov. Lincoln Chafee signed what remains the most sweeping overhaul of a state pension system ever seen in the U.S., saving taxpayers billions but angering many government workers and retirees in the process.

Three years later Chafee is set to leave office after a single term, to be succeeded by the architect of the pension overhaul, General Treasurer and Gov.-elect Gina Raimondo. But with a suit challenging the law still in pretrial limbo, there is growing momentum in favor of reaching a deal to resolve the issue once and for all.

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Watch Newsmakers: Providence Mayor-elect Jorge Elorza

November 16th, 2014 at 5:00 am by under Nesi's Notes


The Saturday Morning Post: Quick hits on politics & more in RI

November 15th, 2014 at 5:00 am by under Nesi's Notes, On the Main Site, The Saturday Morning Post

Click here to read this week’s Saturday Morning Post on the new WPRI.com website »


Providence repays $1.9M for bad loans, improper expenses

November 14th, 2014 at 5:35 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan & Walt Buteau

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – The troubled taxpayer-funded loan program run by the city of Providence is finally turning the page after years of scrutiny from the federal government.

The city repaid $1.92 million in August to cover a slew of loans and other expenditures the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) ruled never should have been authorized, according to HUD spokeswoman Rhonda Siciliano.

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Mayor-elect Elorza promises no tax increase next year

November 14th, 2014 at 1:58 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan & Tim White

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Mayor-elect Jorge Elorza said Friday he will not seek to raise taxes in order to cover a projected shortfall when he begins to craft his first budget early next year.

The incoming mayor said he’s heard the budget gap for the 2015-16 fiscal year could be between $15 million and $24 million, but indicated he won’t know the true figure until his administration conducts a full review of the budget.

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Providence has crowded race for City Council president

November 13th, 2014 at 4:07 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – If you aren’t running for president of the Providence City Council, chances are you aren’t a member of the Providence City Council.

Ward 15 Councilwoman Sabina Matos confirmed Thursday she is now considering running for the council’s top job, joining a field that already includes Ward 10 Councilman Luis Aponte, Ward 12 Councilman Terry Hassett and Ward 14 Councilman David Salvatore.

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Gov.-elect Raimondo names 13 to her transition team

November 13th, 2014 at 2:35 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Gov.-elect Gina Raimondo on Thursday announced she has appointed 13 Rhode Islanders to her transition team, including a top State House Republican, as she prepares to succeed Gov. Lincoln Chafee in January.

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RI ranks No. 4 in US for student loan debt

November 13th, 2014 at 12:31 am by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Students earning their bachelor’s degrees from colleges in Rhode Island are graduating with some of the highest levels of debt in the country, according to a study released Thursday by Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit The Institute for College Access & Success (TICAS).

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Central Coventry Fire District set to file for bankruptcy

November 12th, 2014 at 10:20 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

COVENTRY, R.I. (WPRI) – The cash-strapped Central Coventry Fire District is preparing to file for bankruptcy after months of unsuccessful negotiations between state officials and the local firefighters’ union, WPRI.com has confirmed.

Stephen Hartford, the state-appointed receiver overseeing the fire district’s finances, on Wednesday night told WPRI.com he has hired Robert Flanders to prepare a Chapter 9 municipal bankruptcy filing with the authorization of Gov. Lincoln Chafee.

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Gorbea names secretary of state transition team

November 12th, 2014 at 4:32 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – R.I. Secretary of State-elect Nellie Gorbea on Wednesday announced she’s tapped 12 Rhode Islanders to serve on her transition team, as she prepares to take over from Ralph Mollis, the term-limited current officeholder.

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Magaziner taps business, union leaders for transition team

November 12th, 2014 at 11:52 am by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – R.I. General Treasurer-elect Seth Magaziner on Tuesday announced he’s tapped eight Rhode Islanders from the business community and organized labor to serve on his transition team, as he prepares to take over the job from Governor-elect Gina Raimondo.

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Here are the key city jobs Mayor-elect Elorza must fill

November 11th, 2014 at 11:59 am by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – A week after winning the race for Providence mayor, Democrat Jorge Elorza is already staffing up as he prepares to take office in January.

Elorza announced Tuesday the hiring of former mayoral candidate Brett Smiley and Tony Simon, a top aide to U.S. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, as his chief operating officer and chief of staff, respectively.

So who else will the mayor-elect hire in the coming weeks? Here’s a breakdown of the key positions any new mayor has to fill. (Note: Elorza said he plans to require all new directors to live in the city.)

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Former mayoral candidate Smiley to join Elorza’s staff

November 11th, 2014 at 9:48 am by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Brett Smiley, whose decision in August to drop out of the race for Providence mayor paved the way for Jorge Elorza to win the Democratic primary, will serve as the city’s chief operating officer beginning in January, the mayor-elect announced Tuesday.

Elorza also announced Tony Simon, the deputy district director for U.S. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, will be his chief of staff and state Rep. Grace Diaz will work as his senior advisor on community relations.

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City Council leadership hopefuls owe state $59K in campaign fines

November 10th, 2014 at 2:46 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – The two men poised to become the top ranking members of the Providence City Council owe the state more than $59,000 in campaign fines, but both say they intend to correct “mistakes” they’ve made in recent years.

The R.I. Board of Elections confirmed Monday that City Councilman Luis Aponte, Ward 10, currently owes the state $48,688 for his failure to file more than two dozen campaign finance reports and Councilman Kevin Jackson, Ward 3, owes $10,754 from a settlement he reached with the board in 2014 as well as six delinquent campaign reports.

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