Carcieri (not that one, the other one) on EP – and RI – Politics
Extended excerpts transcribed from Justin’s recording of the remarks of East Providence School Committee Chairman Anthony Carcieri at the EPGOP Fall Fundraiser last Thursday.
Most state senators are not so tactless or ill-advised as to attend a council meeting of the municipality that they represent and berate that body for attempting to budget responsibly. This, remarkably, appears to have happened at the November 3 [beginning at 1:57:00] City Council meeting in East Providence. That charming (local) incident aside, Mr. Carcieri’s analysis and advice, while originally directed at East Providence, resonates for cities and towns throughout the state.
The school department … it’s primary function obviously is to provide an excellent education to the kids of East Providence. And we have to do that in an affordable way. That’s the primary function. It’s not about politicians. It’s not about the unions. It’s not about the teachers. It’s about the kids. Sounds corny because everybody uses “it’s about the kids”. But there’s a lot of poeple who use that phrase “it’s about the kids” when, in fact, it’s about money.
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We would like the support of our senators. We’d like the support of our representatives concerning this binding arbitration, perpetual contract. If that ever gets in, I guarantee everybody here, it’s a wrap. Done.
The school committee runs the school department which represents over 50% of your tax bill. Your tax bill will go through the roof. And Joe Larisa and Bob Cusack and the majority on the City Council, they’re fighting hard not to let that happen. But I was at the City Council meeting the other night and I watched our delegation come in and I watched them drop bombs on our city Council and indirectly to our School Committee. That’s not the kind of support we need.
So there’s been a lot of talk here tonight about state politics, national politics. That’s all great. I’m just working on the j.v. squad right here in the city. And I think all politics should start in the cities and towns and work their way up rather than from the top down. Because if we get things squared away in East Providence, we’ll get some people that we can run for the Senate and the House … and maybe we can start changing the complexion of things at the State House. Because until the State House releases its grip with the union, unions plural, the State of Rhode Island is going nowhere. And this is the 900 pound elephant that’s in the room that nobody wants to talk about. Nobody wants to talk about it. They talk about tourism, they talk about this, they talk about businesses and container ports. That’s all great. Distill it down to the simple stuff. The unions, the politicians up at the State House are like this. They are strangling the state. The state is going down, down.
And nobody will say it’s that. They’ll talk about everything else except that. That’s the big elephant in the room. So start calling up your senators and reps. Start sending them letters. And anybody who’s connected with the unions, vote ’em out.