Nesi’s Notes

Watch Executive Suite: Utilidata CEO Scott DePasquale

January 27th, 2015 at 12:53 am by under Nesi's Notes


Watch Newsmakers: Pawtucket Mayor Don Grebien

January 27th, 2015 at 12:52 am by under Nesi's Notes


The Saturday Morning Post: Jan 24

January 24th, 2015 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 »


Pawtucket braces for rumored sale of PawSox

January 23rd, 2015 at 5:44 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Tim White and Ted Nesi

PAWTUCKET, R.I. (WPRI) – Pawtucket Mayor Don Grebien has seen the same reports as everyone else about the Pawtucket Red Sox getting sold, but he’s gotten no indication a sale would lead the team to bolt Rhode Island. “My instincts tell me they won’t leave,” he said Friday.

Read the rest of this story »


New panel considers RI historic tax credits, development

January 23rd, 2015 at 12:48 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – A Rhode Island Senate commission tasked with studying the challenges of commercial development and redevelopment of historic buildings wants to propose legislative initiatives that will be voted on this year, but it remains unclear if the group will make recommendations on how to address the vacant Superman building in downtown Providence.

Read the rest of this story »


How the Patriots almost moved to Providence

January 22nd, 2015 at 11:18 am by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – They could have called it “defect-gate.”

Eighteen years ago this week, then-Providence Mayor Vincent A. “Buddy” Cianci Jr. flew to New Orleans for Super Bowl XXXI with one mission: convince New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft to move his franchise to Rhode Island’s capital city.

Read the rest of this story »


Gorbea hires former US Attorney to handle Corso case

January 21st, 2015 at 11:45 am by under Nesi's Notes

By Tim White

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Rhode Island Secretary of State Nellie Gorbea has hired former Rhode Island U.S. Attorney Robert Corrente to handle a complaint filed by a Providence attorney who was fined for not registering as a lobbyist for 38 Studios.

Read the rest of this story »


2nd taxpayer-backed loan from 38 Studios program in trouble

January 20th, 2015 at 6:00 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi and Tim White

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Top state officials have been put on notice about problems with another taxpayer-backed loan that was given out through the same program that backed Curt Schilling’s 38 Studios, the Target 12 Investigators have learned.

The R.I. Commerce Corporation sent a formal notification to the governor’s office Dec. 17 disclosing “an insufficiency of funds to pay the full principal amount” on a $4-million loan taken out in 2011 by The Corporate Marketplace Inc. The Commerce Corp. used its Job Creation Guaranty Program to effectively co-sign on the loan.

Read the rest of this story »


Report: Deborah Gist a finalist for Tulsa superintendent’s job

January 20th, 2015 at 10:26 am by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Rhode Island Education Commissioner Deborah Gist is a finalist for the school superintendent’s job in her hometown of Tulsa, Okla., according to a report in the Tulsa World.

Read the rest of this story »


Lifespan: Charity care down by half thanks to Obamacare

January 19th, 2015 at 12:26 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Rhode Island’s biggest hospital chain is already seeing a positive financial impact from President Obama’s health law, WPRI.com has learned.

Read the rest of this story »


Watch Newsmakers: Senator Reed; Congressman Cicilline

January 18th, 2015 at 5:00 am by under Nesi's Notes


The Saturday Morning Post: Jan 17

January 17th, 2015 at 5:00 am by under Nesi's Notes, The Saturday Morning Post

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


Inspector general probing RI Housing, filing reveals

January 15th, 2015 at 7:17 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – A federal inspector general is looking into Rhode Island Housing’s management of a major affordable-housing program, WPRI.com has confirmed.

Read the rest of this story »


3 important RI health care stories you might have missed

January 15th, 2015 at 11:24 am by under Nesi's Notes, On the Main Site

The end of the year is often a time when news stories that might otherwise receive a lot of attention get overlooked while people are busy with the holidays. That’s even more true in a year like 2014, when Rhode Islanders were recovering from a huge election season and preparing for new leadership.

One example of this phenomenon was health care. While the future of HealthSource RI continues to get a lot of attention, three other things that happened in December deserved a closer look than they got. Together, they give some sense of what public and private leaders in the local health sector are expecting to focus on in 2015.

Here they are.

1. The $20-million federal health-care grant

Governor Chafee and the congressional delegation announced Dec. 16 that the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services had awarded Rhode Island $20 million for a State Innovation Model initiative. The eight-figure grant garnered headlines, but relatively little attention was paid to how it will be spent.

(more…)


Study: RI cities, towns face $5B retiree shortfall

January 14th, 2015 at 4:13 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Rhode Island cities and towns owe their current and former workers more than $5 billion in retirement benefits with no money set aside to pay for them, a new state study has found.

Read the rest of this story »


RI has no formal policy for opting out of new standardized test

January 14th, 2015 at 3:51 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – There is no formal policy for students to opt out of taking Rhode Island’s new standardized test later this year, but department of education officials said Tuesday students aren’t legally required to participate in the exam.

The department fully expects most students to take the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) exam, just as they would with any test given in schools every day, according to deputy commissioner Dave Abbott and Mary Ann Snider, RIDE’s chief of educator excellence and instructional effectiveness.

Read the rest of this story »


Judge, lawyers meet as RI pension trial nears

January 13th, 2015 at 11:58 am by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

NEWPORT, R.I. (WPRI) – Lawyers on both sides of the high-stakes lawsuit challenging Rhode Island’s landmark 2011 state pension overhaul met with the judge behind closed doors Tuesday morning as the pretrial process continued.

Read the rest of this story »


Watch Executive Suite: Splitwise’s Bittner; Quonset’s King

January 12th, 2015 at 5:00 am by under Nesi's Notes


Watch Newsmakers: Sean Daly; Barbara Cottam, Dave Preston

January 11th, 2015 at 1:13 pm by under Nesi's Notes


The Saturday Morning Post: Jan 10

January 10th, 2015 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 School Superintendent gets contract extension

January 9th, 2015 at 7:15 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza said Friday he intends to extend the contract of school Superintendent Dr. Susan Lusi through the end of the 2015-16 school year.

Read the rest of this story »


CVS, Carpionato, GTECH help pay for Raimondo inauguration

January 8th, 2015 at 6:38 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Major local companies, philanthropies, individuals and fellow politicians all chipped in more than $130,000 to help Gov. Gina Raimondo pay for her inaugural celebrations this week, WPRI.com has learned.

Read the rest of this story »


Experts: Tsarnaev, Hernandez trials will be very different

January 8th, 2015 at 2:04 am by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – They’re taking place simultaneously in Massachusetts, but the trials of accused Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez are going to play out in different ways over the next several months.

So what won’t the two trials have in common?

WPRI.com asked former U.S. Attorney for Rhode Island Robert Corrente and Andy Horowitz, the director of clinical programs and the criminal defense clinic at Roger Williams University School of Law, for a complete breakdown.

Read the rest of this story »


Report: RI spends big on schools, trails in student achievement

January 8th, 2015 at 2:03 am by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Rhode Island remains among the top 10 states in the country when it comes to spending on public schools, but it’s still in the middle of the pack for student achievement, according to a report released Thursday by Education Week, the nation’s preeminent publication for education news.

The report, titled Quality Counts, ranked every state and Washington, D.C., based on three key indicators: K-12 achievement, school spending and its chance for success index, which measures the role education plays in a person’s life from cradle to career.

Read the rest of this story »


HealthSource RI enrollment surges; Neighborhood gaining

January 7th, 2015 at 4:37 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Rhode Islanders are signing up for private health insurance plans through HealthSource RI at a faster pace than they did during the marketplace’s first year of operations, according to data released Wednesday.

In a noteworthy development, 43% of those who’ve enrolled this year chose a plan from Neighborhood Health Plan of Rhode Island, as Blue Cross’s share plunged from 97% to 54%.

Read the rest of this story »


Somber official portrait of Gov. Chafee released

January 6th, 2015 at 10:25 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Lincoln Chafee’s four years as Rhode Island governor came to an end shortly after noon on Tuesday, and within hours the state’s residents got their first look at his official portrait.

Read the rest of this story »


Tax deals, streetcar among Luis Aponte’s top priorities

January 6th, 2015 at 7:07 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – City Council President Luis Aponte said he will seek to provide developers with more predictability when it comes to tax rates, but stopped short of committing to new Mayor Jorge Elorza’s pledge to hold the line on taxes in his first budget.

Read the rest of this story »


Corso appeals 38 Studios lobby violation decision in court

January 6th, 2015 at 3:16 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Tim White

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Providence attorney Michael Corso has filed a complaint against the secretary of state’s office asking a judge to overturn a hearing officer’s decision that Corso should have registered as a lobbyist for 38 Studios.

Read the rest of this story »


Gina Raimondo sworn in as 75th RI governor

January 6th, 2015 at 12:30 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Gina M. Raimondo was sworn in as Rhode Island’s 75th governor on Tuesday, aiming to lead what she says will be a “comeback” for a state whose 1 million residents have been struggling with a weak economy and pervasive pessimism.

Read the rest of this story »


Jorge Elorza sworn in as Providence’s 38th mayor

January 5th, 2015 at 11:01 am by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Jorge Elorza, the former law professor and Housing Court judge whose first foray into city politics saw him defeat one of the most infamous politicians in Rhode Island history, was sworn in as Providence’s 38th mayor shortly after midnight Monday.

Read the rest of this story »