RI Political Corruption

A Land Bereft of Models

By Justin Katz | September 19, 2007 |

I didn’t realize that it was so hard to find models and/or fireman and policeman hats: The sculptor who made the 9/11 memorial that became the center of attention after Mayor Charles Lombardi buffed out the likenesses of two former public safety officials from the granite surface spoke out yesterday, saying that while he understands…

A Rhode Island No-Brainer

By Justin Katz | September 18, 2007 |

In what sort of environment could anyone possibly find it acceptable to place the faces of two local (and living!) officials on a monument to others who died heroically in a distant city? A decision by Mayor Charles Lombardi to remove the likenesses of two of the town’s former public safety officials from the town’s…

Montal-bunk-o

By Justin Katz | September 11, 2007 |

Montalbano’s public statement gives the impression that he thinks $12,000 is a reasonable fine for a minor paperwork error: I am pleased to have reached a resolution of this matter that is fair and just. The finding of the Ethics Commission in this case – that I failed to complete my paperwork – accurately reflects…

Mr. Montalbano…

By Justin Katz | September 11, 2007 |

… becomes probably the last person in Rhode Island to admit the obvious: Resolving months of legal back and forth, state Senate President Joseph Montalbano today settled the ethics case against him for a $12,000 civil penalty. … Montalbano was accused of engaging in a conflict of interest by voting to put a casino proposal…

Trying to Blunt the Impact of “Special-interest solons”

By Marc Comtois | February 12, 2007 |

I thought it worth noting the item “Special-interest solons” from today’s Political Scene column in the ProJo: [Rep. Douglas W.] Gablinske [D-Bristol]…recently asked the state Ethics Commission to address this question: “how full-time union employees, who are also legislators, are able to promote union interests through legislation.” In a letter to the commission, Gablinske said…

Watching the Senate: Election Reform

By Marc Comtois | February 11, 2007 |

The Senate appears to be willing to tackle a couple issues that certainly seem to foster political corruption. S 0283, proposed by Senators Gibbs, Bates, Cote, Blais, and Breene, would amend the currently defined procedure for voting: Each person desiring to vote shall, before receiving his or her ballot, state his or her name and…

Post-Celona: Who are the Suspect Seven?

By Marc Comtois | February 2, 2007 |

Sounds to me like there may be a few nervous lawmakers up on the Hill: Shudders, dread, curiosity — and what several lawmakers called sadness — permeated the State House yesterday amid warnings by the state’s top federal prosecutor that the John Celona influence-peddling scandal had already spawned “active” corruption investigations against seven other politicians…

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