Rhode Island Senate

RE: The Senate District 29 “Bellwether”

By Marc Comtois | September 12, 2012 |

Just a follow up on yesterday’s post regarding the Senate-29 Democratic primary race between incumbent Michael McCaffrey and challenger Lisa Pisaturo, which McCaffrey won by 6% in a low turnout election. A Pisaturo win would have undoubtedly been taken as a sign that the Rhode Island electorate was ready to embrace gay marriage. But what…

Senate District 29: Bellwether….until it’s not?

By Marc Comtois | September 11, 2012 |

The local media and gay marriage advocates are tabbing Rhode Island Senate District 29 in Warwick as “one to watch” as a mini-referendum on gay marriage in the state. David Scharfenberg sums it up: Laura Pisaturo, a lesbian lawyer who backs same-sex nuptals, is facing off against Senator Michael McCaffrey, a Warwick Democrat who opposes…

Notes on Senator Ciccone’s Demotion

By Carroll Andrew Morse | April 4, 2012 |

1. By now, you’ve probably heard one of the media reports on Rhode Island State Senator Frank Ciccone being removed from/giving up (more on the slash in point 4) his Chairmanship of the Senate Government Oversight Committee and his membership on the Senate Finance Committee. He kept his assignment as Vice-Chairman of the Labor Committee.…

Publishing Votes to Hold for Further Study is the Official RI Senate Policy

By Carroll Andrew Morse | February 1, 2012 |

Rhode Island Senate Director of Communications Greg Pare informs me, in response to an inquiry, that Senate Committees have been publishing the committee votes to hold bills for further study since last year (he sent along a few examples, available here, here, here, and here), as part of a set of rules changes supported by…

Stephen Iannazzi Will Bravely Scrape by Without His (Second) 3% Raise

By Monique Chartier | July 19, 2011 |

Why stay in college? Why go to night school? Talking Heads, “Life During Wartime” Late this afternoon, the ProJo’s Kathy Gregg broke the latest development in the matter of the Senate Majority Leader’s degree-less Special Assistant. Stephen Iannazzi, the $88,112-a-year aide to Senate Majority Leader Dominick Ruggerio who became a focus of public ire over…

Binding Arbitration Bill Made Public

By Marc Comtois | June 29, 2011 |

The arbitration bill has been made public (PDF) along with a press release explaining the rationale. A “Last Best Offer – Final Package” model has been added: The legislation changes the arbitration process to one in which the complete “Last Best Offer” from both teachers’ unions and management is considered in its entirety, as opposed…

First Responses to DiPalma Inquiry

By Justin Katz | May 31, 2011 |

The responses have begun to trickle in to my inquiry about the support that Sen. Louis DiPalma (D, Little Compton, Tiverton, Portsmouth, Middletown, Newport) has expressed for Senate Majority Leader Dominique Ruggerio’s hiring of a union pal’s son at a very high salary. So far, I’ve sent (or attempted to send) variations of the following…

The 25-Year-Old Keeping the Senate Together

By Justin Katz | May 5, 2011 |

To hear RI Senate Majority Leader Dominick Ruggerio (D, Providence) tell it, Rhode Island’s legislature is practically run by 25-year-old Stephen Iannazzi (son of the highest-paid union boss in the state… in the same union for which Mr. Ruggerio makes a hefty salary, as well): Mr. Iannazzi showed extreme competence and was an invaluable asset…

Bills Introduced to the Rhode Island Senate (Judiciary Committee), February 8-10

By Carroll Andrew Morse | February 14, 2011 |

Significant Rewrites with Statewide Impact S0214Prohibits landlords from asking about immigration status. S0216Allows expungement of a criminal record in 5 years instead of 10 under certain circumstances. S0219From the official description: “This act would amend the law banning racial profiling in traffic stops by state and municipal law enforcement agencies by imposing additional requirements upon…

Bills Introduced to the Rhode Island Senate (Education Committee, Special Legislation Committee and Housing and Muncipal Government Committee), February 8-10

By Carroll Andrew Morse | February 14, 2011 |

Targeted Changes with Statewide Impact (Education Committee) S0181The appointment of the State Education Commissioner by the Board of regents would require Senate confirmation. S0182School districts could count time-in-school in hours, instead of days, and thereby a longer school day to meet minimum requirements. S0183The state will pay 100% of costs for students attending vocational schools…

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