Dave Talan and Dan Harrop on Newsmakers, Part 1

For those Providence residents who haven’t made a decision on who they will be voting for in tommorow�s Maoyral primary, here’s a quick summary of Part 1 of Dan Harrop‘s and Dave Talan‘s appearance on WPRI-TV Channel 12‘s Newmakers program from September 3. Both gentleman gave articulate and detailed answers to each question that was asked. If you have the time, the original video (segments 2 and 3) is worth watching…
Steve Aveson asks Dan Harrop what the biggest issues facing Providence are.
Harrop answers failing schools and higher taxes. Every middle school is failing, as are 10 of 25 elementary schools. There has been a 14% tax increase in 2 years, with another 11% planned for next year.
Aveson suggests that Providence Mayor David Cicilline would say that his removal of principals form middle schools shows that he is serious about education reform.
Harrop questions the value of removing principals after one year. Since Providence has an appointed school committee, the Mayor has ultimate responsibility for failing schools.
Aveson asks Dave Talan about his sense of the biggest problems facing Providence.
Talan says he agrees with Harrop; the biggest problems are education, taxes and spending. 8,000 of 36,000 Providence students have left the public school system. A $4000-per-year school voucher would allow another 10,000 the freedom to leave. A voucher system would reduce overcrowding, end “musical chairs forced busing”, improve public education, restore neighborhood schools and save between 25-50 million dollars. Talan says he would also work at reducing spending, eliminating unfunded mandates and reforming the pension system.
Ian Donnis asks why Mayor Ciciline lacks a primary opponent, if he’s done such a bad job.
Harrop says he’s not sure about Democratic intra-party politics, but respected city council members like John Lombardi and Rita Williams are on record opposing the Mayor.
Donnis suggests that Cicilline would say he faces resistance because he is more forward thinking than his opponents.
Harrop: John Lombardi and Rita Willams have been excellent reps.
Donnis asks Talan why Cicilline has no primary opponent.
Talan answers that Cicilline he has two credible opponents on the Republican side. Talan adds that Cicilline is good on ethical issues, and the Providence has seen some economic growth because the businesses confident they don’t need to pay bribes or make campaign contributions to operate in Providence.
Aveson: You’re saying Cicilline is a good politican but a bad administrator?
Harrop replies that Cicilline has shown he can’t collaborate with people. He walked out after just 5 minutes of a meeting with the Governor on education funding, which did not serve the interests of the people of Providence.

  • The second segment of this debate is available here.
  • An Anchor Rising interview with Dan Harrop is available here.
  • An Anchor Rising interview with Dave Talan is available here.

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