Rhode Island Tip Sheet: Can the Ocean State simultaneously walk and chew gum?
STATE OF THE STATE: While Rhode Island has received a lot of out-0f-state attention for the new pension law, Moody’s finding about the state’s struggling cities and towns comes is a cold slap of reality heading into 2012. It raises the question of whether the Ocean State can move past one thorny political issue to immediately address others. These include not just the locally managed pensions left out of the new state law, but Rhode Island’s perennial quest for a brighter economic future. So time will tell whether the pension law was just a blip of political cooperation or something better.
CHAFEE: The governor’s poll ratings might be in the dumps, but give him credit for progress at the long-suffering RI DMV.
STATE HOUSE 2012: Dan McGowan has the story that local activist Libby Kimzey plans to challenge Representative Michael Tarro next year. John Lombardi is also seen as a possible candidate. Jef Nickerson notes the news comes on the day of the slated demolition of the Grove Street School.
SECRETARY OF STATE 2014: Representative Deborah Ruggiero cautions that 2014 is a long way, but tells me she expects to take a look at running for secretary of state. Ruggiero could benefit from being a female in a race where three men, Terry Hassett, Jamie Doyle, and Juan Pichardo, have expressed interest.
STAFFERS: Ted Nesi reports the well-liked George Zainyeh is in talks on joining the Chafee administration.
TWITTER: A Saudi prince has invested $300 million in Twitter, good for a three percent stake.
PROJO: Nine Providence Journal employees have agreed to take the company’s latest buyout offer, says Newspaper Guild president John Hill. He says the departures are split between news and advertising, including ad reps, copy desk and support staffers.
WHITE HOUSE 2012: Ted looks at the freeze of pensions at an Attleboro company with a Mitt Romney connection.
LA VIDA LOCA, SENIOR VERSION: Irwin Hasen, who used to draw the Dondi comic strip, got his due in Sunday’s NYT. At age 93, he’s still enjoying martinis and displaying ribald art of past loves in his NYC apartment.
BIRTHDAY: Will Emmons; Bob Troutman.