The New England Patriots and Baltimore Ravens square off in a key AFC clash Sunday at M&T Bank Stadium. The Patriots are trying to lock up their fifth straight AFC East title after losing 24-20 at Miami last weekend. New England is 10-and-4, two games ahead of the Dolphins for the division lead. The Ravens are on a roll, having won four straight to move into the sixth seed in the AFC playoff picture at 8-and-6. Baltimore pulled out a dramatic 18-16 win at Detroit on "Monday Night Football" thanks to Justin Tucker's 61-yard field goal in the final minute, his sixth field goal of the game.
Two Rhode Island residents are filing a nationwide class action lawsuit against Target over the retailer's massive data breach. Target officials announced Thursday the security breach could involve credit and debit card information for as many as 40-million customers. In their suit, William Knowles and Patricia Doyle accuse the retail giant of violating the Federal Stored Communications Act and of breaching an implied contract to safeguard the confidential financial information of its customers. The suit was filed Friday in the U.S. District Court of Rhode Island.
The Rhode Island Public Utilities Commission is granting approval for National Grid to raise residential electricity rates by 12-percent starting January 1st. The rate hike will add nearly ten-dollars to the monthly bill for a household that uses 500 kilowatt hours of electricity. National Grid attributes the increase mainly to the higher price it is paying to buy electricity. Customers who encounter problems paying their electric bill due to the rate hike are urged to contact the utility.
A national settlement is expected to bring financial relief to Rhode Islanders victimized by improper foreclosures and/or deceptive mortgage practices. The federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and 49 attorneys general reached the two-billion dollar settlement with Ocwen Financial Corporation and its subsidiaries. In Rhode Island, Ocwen will provide more than nine-and-a-half-million dollars in first lien principal reductions as part of the settlement.
Rhode Island Housing’s Deputy Director has been fired. Gayle Corrigan claims it was because she wanted a criminal investigation into possible finance irregularities at the Urban League of Rhode Island. The Journal reports Richard Godfrey of Rhode Island Housing would not say why she was fired because they don’t comment on personnel matters.
Rhode Island's unemployment rate fell two-tenths of a percent last month to nine-percent. According to the state Department of Labor and Training the state gained 14-hundred jobs in November. It's the first time the state has had four straight months of job growth since 2003. The national unemployment rate for November was seven-percent.
A 25-year lease agreement has been reached between General Dynamics Electric Boat and the Quonset Development Corporation. Governor Chafee says under the agreement, EB will expand by about 42 acres at the Quonset Business Park. The submarine manufacturer currently leases 100 acres in addition to the 33 acres it owns for various types of manufacturing and hull fabrication.
A petition has been delivered to Providence Bishop Thomas Tobin asking him to apologize for comments about the late Nelson Mandela. Last week, the bishop praised Mandela's life of public service, but he was critical of Mandela's support of abortion. Tobin says he respects the opinion of Faithful America, and hopes its members will respect his opposition to abortion which reflects the teachings of the Catholic Church.
State General Treasurer Gina Raimondo is running for governor. Her official announcement was delivered yesterday in a video emailed to supporters and posted online. It ends months of speculation and sets up a Democratic primary against another first-term office holder, Providence Mayor Angel Taveras. Businessman Ken Block and Cranston Mayor Allan Fung are running for the Republican nomination.
The family of Odon Lloyd is not waiting for the outcome of the criminal case against Aaron Hernandez. They’re pursuing a wrongful death lawsuit against Hernandez according to the Herald News.
Jamestown schools will need more money next year to cover increases in health insurance and tech upgrades. The Daily News reports school officials said new state standards require improved computers. They will also be negotiating new contracts for teachers and the clerical staff.
A petition with reportedly nearly 20-thousand signatures on it will be delivered to Providence Bishop Thomas Tobin today. A group of Catholics associated with an online organization called Faithful America, is demanding Tobin apologize for criticizing the late South African President Nelson Mandela for his position on abortion. Last week, Tobin issued a statement praising Mandela's life of public service, but critical of his role in liberalizing South Africa's abortion laws.
The Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation is re-branding. They are planning on name change to Commerce R.I. at the first of the year. According to the Journal, The General Assembly passed legislation that caused the change.
A former industrial area near T.F. Green Airport and the commuter rail station will now be known as Centre City Warwick. State and city officials hope to attract a mix of condominiums, hotels, restaurants and retail businesses. Officials hope it will also generate 2000 jobs.
A Cranston estate planner has been sentenced to six-years in federal prison followed by community service. Prosecutors say Joseph Caramadre engaged in an investment scheme targeting the terminally ill. They say he conspired to steal and use the identities of dying people, and made millions-of-dollars in illegal profits from insurance companies and brokerage firms for himself and others, when those people died. His co-defendant was sentenced to a year in prison.
Here is a link to the story of Aaron Collins and his brothers cross country trip to tip!
Health Source RI, the state health insurance marketplace, will host a seminar this afternoon (12:30p-4:30p) at the Newport Public Library. The event is intended to help you navigate the Affordable Care Act.
The Joint Legislative Commission to Study the Sales Tax Repeal meets tomorrow at the State House. The commission was created to study all aspects of the current sales tax system, including a possible repeal of the tax. The panel is expected to report its findings and make recommendations to the General Assembly in February.
Twin River Casino’s parent company is buying The Hard Rock Casino in Biloxi, Mississippi. According to The Journal, it cost 250 million dollars. They deal should close in June.
The Red Sox will cap off the 2013 championship year by hosting the first-ever "New Year's Eve at Fenway Park." It's an ice skating and sledding event from 5-to-10 p.m. on December 31st for families from throughout New England. The World Series trophies will be on display and available for photos. Tickets are available online at redsox.com/newyears.
Three dozen men and women will be sworn-in as Rhode Island state troopers this afternoon. They were selected from more than 16-hundred applicants and began 22-weeks of intensive training in July. Today's ceremony is set for one p.m. at Rhode Island College.
The political fate of four of the five members of the town council in Exeter will be decided by voters tomorrow. The recall effort was mounted by opponents of their proposal to have the attorney general's office oversee the gun permit process for carrying concealed weapons, rather than the town clerk. Gun rights advocates say the council members ignored their concerns that the proposal would make it more difficult to get a permit.
The Rhode Island D.O.T. has set it’s priorities for projects that need funding and a 1 million dollar Broadway streetscape in Newport is on the top of the list. There’s a public hearing on Friday morning to go over the projects.
The 60th anniversary of the Newport Jazz Festival will also include a tour. 17 concerts in February and March will highlight artists selected by George Wein. The closest show will be in Boston.
A dead gray fox found in East Greenwich on Monday was rabid. The state Department of Environmental Management doesn't know how long the animal had been dead, or if it's the fox that reportedly attacked several people last month. Area residents are warned it's likely the fox transmitted rabies to other animals before it died.
A group called the Humanists of Rhode Island is protesting religious symbols at the State House. In response to the Christmas tree and the Jewish menorah on display at the State House, the group has hung what it calls a "seasonal banner" there, promoting the separation of church and state. The group says the government of the United States, and Rhode Island in particular, is "secular by nature and design."
The International Tennis Hall of Fame will tear down 4 buildings on Memorial Boulevard and move another building to build a new tennis complex. According to the Daily News, they got the go ahead yesterday from the Newport Planning Board.
Gun rights advocate, Rodney Santos from Exeter says the Exeter Town Council met illegally in June. According to the Journal, he asked the Attorney General to look into the council breaking the Open Meetings Law. Exeter residents will vote this Saturday to recall 4 town councilors that want the state to control concealed weapons permits instead of the town clerk.
Regularly scheduled year-round international flights from T.F. Green Airport could soon be a reality. The president of the Rhode Island Airport Corporation says negotiations with an international carrier are ongoing. Kelley Fredericks says he thinks there's about an 80-percent chance an agreement will be reached.
A computer system security breach at JPMorgan Chase may have exposed personal data such as email addresses and bank account information of more than 18-hundred Rhode Islanders. Those potentially affected include people receiving unemployment benefits, temporary disability insurance or child support via prepaid debit cards. The state Department of Labor and Training announced yesterday the breach happened between July and September. There is no evidence of misuse of personal information, however, as a precaution, JPMorgan Chase is offering free credit monitoring for one year to those affected by the breach.
Bishop Thomas Tobin says while there is much to admire about the late Nelson Mandela, including his personal courage and defense of human rights, there is a part of his legacy that is not praiseworthy. Tobin says the former South African president promoted and signed a bill into law in 1996 that liberalized the country's abortion laws.
If you missed the interview with Cranston Mayor and candidate for Governor, Allan Fung, go to the podcast page and listen to The Open Forum with Dave Rogers.
The Pell Center at Salve Regina University says the news story of the year is NSA spying. According to the Journal, this is the first time The Pell Center has made such a designation.
Fire officials are investigating a fire in Tiverton on Saturday night. Everyone got out ok but one firefighter was injured.
Rhode Island Senators Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse are among 32 lawmakers who are urging extension of benefits for the long-term unemployed. If Congress doesn't act by the end of the month, benefits will stop for nearly one-and-a-half-million people at the end of the year, and millions more will have no benefits after their initial 26 weeks of unemployment insurance ends during 2014. Reed, Whitehouse and the other senators say unemployment insurance is a lifeline to people searching for work in a “challenging economy.”
The Cleveland Browns head to Foxboro Sunday to play the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium. The Browns lost 32-28 at home to Jacksonville this past Sunday. Cleveland quarterbacks Brandon Weeden and Jason Campbell are both dealing with concussions, possibly leaving Cowboys practice squad acquisition Alex Tanney in line to start. The Pats pulled out a 34-31 win at Houston last weekend and lead the AFC East at 9-and-3.
An ex-convict is headed back to prison after being found guilty of fatally shooting a 17-year-old girl in May of 2011. A jury handed down its verdict against Leron Porter on Friday following a month-long trial. They deliberated only five hours. Police said Porter shot and killed Tiphany Tallo during a dispute with her older sister in their home that was allegedly over a boyfriend. Tallo's sister was stabbed and her mother assaulted in the attack carried out by Porter and several members of his family. He had been released from federal prison just two weeks before Tallo was murdered.
It’s 5 years probation, 9 months home confinement and a fine for Mary O’Rourke for her role in the scheme that cost the Navy 18 million dollars. She also has to help pay 470,000 dollars in restitution. According to the Journal, she was an executive with Advanced Solutions for Tomorrow that had offices in Middletown and Ralph Mariano’s girlfriend.
A two-year investigation has resulted in dozens of arrests and the dismantling of the MS-13 street gang. U.S. Attorney Peter Neronha says the probe, dubbed "Operation Gas" also resulted in the seizure of 23 kilograms of heroin, 100 grams of cocaine, 400-thousand-dollars in cash, 15 guns and a dozen vehicles. Neronha says 36 people were arrested and a dozen have been deported or face deportation on immigration violation charges. The operation began as an investigation into heroin trafficking from the Dominican Republic and Guatemala into Rhode Island.
A 3 year sentence for another person involved in the Navy kickback scheme has been handed down to Russell Spencer of Portsmouth according to the Journal. The former Navy subcontractor received the light sentence for the same reason as Anjan Dutta Gupta did. They both cooperated with the investigation into the scheme that cost the Navy 18 million dollars.
Governor Chaffee ordered flags in Rhode Island flown at half-staff on public buildings and grounds until sunset on Monday in memory of Nelson Mandela. The former South African president and anti-apartheid leader died yesterday at the age of 95. Chafee issued a statement calling Mandela a historic leader who dedicated his life to "fighting for freedom, social justice and racial equality."
An 80 year old woman was killed in a single car crash yesterday in Portsmouth. After the accident she was taken to Newport Hospital where she died. Her identity has not been released.
They made it official. As WADK reported last week, a third full day has been added to next summer's 60th anniversary of the Newport Jazz Festival. The festival will now start on Friday, August 1st, with the day devoted to emerging jazz musicians. The additional day is being funded in part by a 40-thousand-dollar grant from the Rhode Island Foundation.
State officials ok’ed agreements that will allow Deep Water Wind’s under water transmission cable to come ashore at Scarborough Beach in Narragansett. According to the Journal, the state properties committee approved easements in return for 1.7 million dollars. Deep Water Wind still needs permits from other state agencies to move forward with the wind farm off Block Island.
The founder of Advanced Solutions for Tomorrow, which had offices in Middletown, faces sentencing for his role in the scheme that stole 18 million dollars from the Navy. According to the AP, Anjan Dutta-Gupta pleaded guilty in 2011 to bribery. He’s one of 6 people convicted in the scam.
Police shot Marc Kilcline 9 times and now the town of North Kingstown has offered to pay 7 million dollars in damages to his family. The confrontation back in 2009 left him permanently paralyzed and he passed away in April. According to the Journal, police say the mentally ill Kilcline charged at them with a knife and the police shot him. His family filed a lawsuit in 2010 and the settlement will be paid by the town’s insurance company.
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The invitation for this year's annual State House tree lighting calls it a "Christmas tree." The last two years the event sparked criticism when Governor Chafee decided to call it a "holiday tree." Roman Catholic Bishop Thomas Tobin issued a statement supporting the decision to resume calling it a "Christmas tree." The tree lighting in the State House rotunda is set for 5:30 p.m. on Thursday with Secretary of State, Ralph Mollis.
United Way of Rhode Island has a new outreach van that will travel the state to help those calling 211. The United Way 211 Outreach Van will provide private meeting space for counseling on issues ranging from payment of utility bills and food assistance to care for children and aging parents.
The state Department of Health is launching an initiative to eliminate HIV infections and AIDS in Rhode Island by 2018. It includes a multi-media campaign to promote condom use, and routine testing for HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases. In Rhode Island, 22-hundred people are living with HIV and an estimated 400 others don't yet know they are infected.
The Wildlife Rehabilitators Association of Rhode Island in North Kingstown is busy. They are working with a hawk that was burned at the Central Landfill and a snowy owl found with a broken wing at Quonset State Airport. According to the Journal, both birds are expected to survive.
A commission to assess the effectiveness of affordable housing legislation passed in 2004, will meet today. The joint House and Senate Housing Act Implementation Oversight Commission is made up of legislators, local government representatives and housing experts. The meeting is scheduled at four p.m. at the State House.
Members of the House of Representatives will tour the Quonset Business Park tomorrow. The tour and briefing will allow lawmakers to get a look at growth and development there, and hear about future plans. More than 95-hundred people are employed by 175 companies at the park. A similar tour was conducted for members of the state Senate last month.
Providence may get a full-time state trooper detail to help nab violent criminals and patrol high crime neighborhoods. WPRI-TV says a Rhode Island State Police memo shows that about six troopers would work with the city's Neighborhood Response Team. Providence Police Chief Hugh Clements says his department's discussions with the State Police are ongoing and details have not been finalized about the additional manpower. He said money to pay for the extra troopers would come from the state's massive settlement with Google stemming from its placement of illegal prescription drug ads in 2011.
Rhode Islanders in need of a warm winter coat got the chance to pick one up for free at Friday's 17th annual "Buy Nothing Day." There were 14 places around the state where people could either drop off donations of coats or pick one out. The busiest site was in front of the Rhode Island Statehouse where a few thousand coats were given away.
On Sunday, Newport Mayor Harry Winthrop will officially kick off the 43rd Annual Christmas in Newport. Sunday also marks the rededication of Touro Synagogue as part of it’s 250th anniversary.
Rhode Island State police will be stepping up enforcement this weekend in the Click It or Ticket campaign. They will also be targeting speeders, aggressive drivers and drunk drivers. The extra manpower comes from funding through the D.O.T.
New workforce development programs get started this winter that are intended to address the high unemployment rate in the state. According to the Journal, the State Department of Labor and Training will be hiring 3 new people to get one of the new programs started. Spokeswoman Laura Hart says some employers like Electric Boat have already expressed interest.
Bishop Thomas Tobin will bless and then help serve Thanksgiving dinner at the Emmanuel House homeless shelter today. The bishop says the shelter on Public Street in Providence is one of the ways the Catholic Church can make a difference for those in need. The shelter was opened by the Diocese of Providence in 2010 and provides services like addiction recovery and employment resources in addition to emergency housing.
Despite national advertising campaigns from major retailers, stores in Rhode Island will not open today. State law prohibits retail stores from opening on Thanksgiving Day. Big stores in Rhode Island will open for Black Friday at midnight, no earlier. Massachusetts and Maine are the only other states where big retailers are prohibited from opening today.
Aaron Gelinas and Kimberly Leverett have been arrested in Florida. They are awaiting extradition to Rhode Island. The Tiverton couple is accused of sending their children door to door soliciting money for a fake bowl-a-thon.
Ralph Mariano has surrendered to prison. The leader of the kickback scheme that stole 18 million dollars from the Navy is now in jail at federal facility in Massachussetts. According to the Journal, he’ll start serving his 10 years and will appeal his conviction.
It’s been closed since Super Storm Sandy and now part of the Cliff Walk in Newport will re-open next week. Officials expect the entire Cliff Walk to be open by May or June.
Newport is one of the cities being considered by promoters to bring in the Premiere Rugby League for games next September. Mayor Harry Winthrop says promoters are interested in Fort Adams. The city should know more information in January.
Newport Jazz Festival organizers announced yesterday that the festival will start at Fort Adams on Friday, August 1st and feature performances at the International Tennis Hall of Fame and other locations around Newport. According to the AP, organizers have received a 40,000 dollar grant from the Rhode Island Foundation.
The Coast Guard says mariners must be prepared for winter storm conditions the rest of this week. The National Weather Service issued a gale-force weather warning expected to last through today across New England. Yesterday, boaters at sea were urged to seek safe shelter while those ashore were advised to secure their vessels and equipment. Coast Guard air crews from Air Station Cape Cod conducted storm track warning flights to warn boaters, fisherman and commercial vessels of approaching weather conditions.
The National Weather Service issued a high wind warning and flood watch for today in Rhode Island. Up to three-inches of rain is predicted and forecasters warn of potentially damaging winds that could bring down tree limbs and cause power outages. The pre-Thanksgiving storm is expected to impact travelers on one of the busiest travel days of the year.
Officials at T.F Green Airport urge Thanksgiving holiday travelers to allow more time than usual. According to an advisory, the airlines are expecting higher than normal passenger levels from today through next Monday. People should expect longer lines at ticket counters and security checkpoints during peak travel times. Those peak times are usually from five to seven a.m. and three to six p.m. daily.
Rhode Island has qualified for a fourth tier of emergency federal unemployment benefits. The latest report shows the state's unemployment rate at nine-point-two percent. The federal emergency program provides up to 47 weeks of benefits for people who have exhausted their 26 weeks of state benefits. The state may qualify for the fourth and final tier of federal benefits when its three-month average unemployment number reaches or exceeds nine-percent.
More than 15-percent of households in the state are unable to meet their basic food needs according to the 2013 Status Report on Hunger in Rhode Island. The Rhode Island Community Food Bank says nearly one in four households receives help from the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly known as food stamps. Food Bank officials recommend a limit on any further congressional cuts to the SNAP program, and that the state increase its funding to the Food Bank to help meet the increasing demand for food assistance.
High winds caused scattered power outages in Rhode Island. National Grid said that at one point yesterday service was disrupted to about 38-hundred customers, primarily in Kent County. Crews were out throughout the day responding to calls about fallen tree limbs which knocked out power.
Senator Sheldon Whitehouse responded yesterday to the agreement between Iran and world powers that would temporarily ease sanctions while Iran agrees to slowdown their nuclear program. Though some Democrats are skeptical, Whitehouse is supporting the deal and but says it’s only the beginning.
Zachary Thole of Richmond has been charged with DUI in a fatal crash. According to the AP, he’s in court today for bail hearing. The rollover accident on Friday killed Nicholas Gershkoff of North Kingstown and another passenger was treated and released from the hospital.
The Denver Broncos will go against the New England Patriots in Foxboro Sunday night. Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning overcame a ginger ankle to throw for 323 yards and a score as the Broncos beat the previously undefeated Kansas City Chiefs 27-17 in Denver last weekend. The Patriots are coming off a controversial 24-20 loss at Carolina on Monday night where a penalty flag for possible pass interference in the end zone on the game's final play was waived off. New England leads the AFC East at 7-and-3.
Possible thunderstorms up and down the East Coast on Wednesday could affect air and highway travel on the busiest travel day of the year. Local forecasters say coastal storms the day before Thanksgiving have a good chance of affecting flights in and out of T.F. Green Airport that day. The good news is it looks like any rain or high winds will clear out by Thanksgiving Day on Thursday.
A Providence man is trying to save a decommissioned aircraft carrier and turn it into a memorial to President John F. Kennedy here in Rhode Island. Frank Lennon wants to raise money to bring the U.S.S. John F. Kennedy to Middletown as a memorial. He thinks the carrier could boost the local economy, create jobs and attract thousands of visitors each year.
Kennedy cousin Michael Skakel is out of prison after spending eleven years behind bars for the 1975 Greenwich murder of Martha Moxley. A Stamford judge has allowed the Kennedy cousin's release on over a million-dollars bail after his 2002 conviction was vacated by another judge. Prosecutors are expected to appeal the ruling by a state judge that Skakel deserves a new trial because of ineffective counsel.
The task force looking at whether Rhode Island should provide mental health records for gun background checks should proceed cautiously according to mental health advocates. The AP is reporting that advocates are asking for a balance between privacy rights and the need for preventing people with serious mental illness from buying weapons.
The unemployment rate in Rhode Island was nine-point-two-percent in October. The state's rate had dropped to just under nine-percent back in July before going back up over the last few months. The October unemployment rate nationally was seven-point-three-percent.
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