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Rhode Island Tip Sheet: Things other than pensions

November 2, 2011

STATE OF THE STATE: Joint Finance Committee members spent so much time in Room 35 yesterday (10+ hours) that it would have been understandable if they got the bends while coming up for air. What happens next with the pension bill is the big question . . .  House Finance chair Helio Melo told reporters a pre-Thanksgiving vote would be nice, but don’t count on it. . . .  His Senate counterpart, Daniel DaPonte, carved out a caveat while generally endorsing the intent of the Raimondo-Chafee legislation: “In terms of savings and reducing the unfunded liability, and keeping our budget obligations in check in the out years – I think those principles will remain the same. But again, as I’ve said before, there are different ways to get there.”

CHAFEE SPEAKS: Governor Lincoln Chafee told reporters this afternoon, “I think we’re close with the mayors and town managers” on an approach helping communities to cut COLAs in locally managed pensions. He declined to elaborate with any specificity, though.

CHAFEE TRAVELS: The governor is set to go to Gotham tomorrow to hang with fellow independent Michael Bloomberg. Via news release, Chafee says,  “I have a great deal of respect for Mayor Bloomberg and the work he does for the people of New York City. The Mayor is a renowned business and governmental leader, and I look forward to talking with him about his ideas and policies to spur economic growth and job creation.”

ECONOMIC NEWS OTHER THAN PENSIONS: The Federal Reserve today lowered its growth forecast for the next two years, without announcing any new steps to goose the economy.

STAFFERS: N4N reports on US Representative David Cicilline‘s new communications director, Brandon Naylor, who formerly flacked for US Rep. Dennis Moore of Kansas.

WHITE HOUSE 2012: The Fix  on the unanswered questions in the Herman Cain controversy. WaPo reported this afternoon that a lawyer for one of Cain’s accusers is seeking a waiver of her confidentiality agreement.

MEDIA: Is Huffington Post reinventing live-blogging? Nieman Journalism Lab wants to know.

RI MEDIA TWEETER OF THE DAY: Erika Niedowski of the AP, step right up. Wow, does she tweet a lot! Erika does it with a keen eye on news far and wide (she’s been all over the Occupy Providence story), not to mention personal asides about cat food and learning how to work with metal in her spare time.

STATEHOUSE: Stay tuned for a Target 12 report Thursday about which lawmaker is worst when it comes to paying his or her taxes.

CD1: Brendan Doherty‘s campaign today rolled out some unsurprising endorsements: former gov Don Carcieri; former state GOP chairman John Holmes; former LG Bernard Jackvony; and RI GOP Committeewoman Carol Mumford.

MOLLY VS. BANK OF AMERICA: Other factors helped, but Cumberland native Molly Katchpole was the face of the movement to undo Bank of America’s unpopular debit-fee plan.

HUNGRY IN AMERICA: Ted Nesi reports on how 16 percent of Rhode Islanders — almost a fifth of the state’s population — now receives Food Stamps.

STATE OF THE TIP SHEET: Yes, it has been a while, dear readers. Doing radio is job #1 here at RIPR, and that sometimes leaves little time for blogging. But we’re committed to communicating with you in a variety of ways, including my Twitter feed. Anyway, watch for more Tip Sheets than you’ve seen recently.

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