Metro

Spotlight on the Statehouse: Oct. 15, 2015

By
Metro Editor
Thursday, October 15, 2015

Abandoned homes

Mayor Jorge Elorza has partnered with Rhode Island Housing to start a $3 million fund offering small loans to those renovating abandoned homes in Providence, according to a Tuesday press release.

The fund is part of EveryHome, a larger program intended to help decrease the number of boarded and abandoned properties across the city. EveryHome is “a suite of tools” that will expand the receivership program and withhold vacant properties from tax sales, according to the press release.

The Mayor’s Office is also “working closely with local and minority-owned business contractors to connect them with EveryHome projects,” according to the press release. The program plans to fill every vacant and abandoned property in the city over the next six years.

Chafee campaign

The Rhode Island Democratic Party and the LGBTQ Caucus hosted a watch party for the Democratic presidential debate Tuesday at Mirabar in Providence.

Lincoln Chafee ’75 P’14 P’17, who continues to poll below 1 percent, participated in the debate. “He’s got to make the case for why he’s running for president, and why he thinks he would be better than the other folks on the stage,” U.S. Rep. David Cicilline, D-R.I., who attended the watch party, told WPRI.

Chafee told voters in his opening statement that he has had “no scandals.” He also called attention to the fact that he has served as a mayor, a U.S. senator and a governor — a combination of roles no other candidate can lay claim to.

Though he tried to focus the debate on his vote against the Iraq war, Chafee struggled when answering a question about a past vote he made in favor of repealing the Glass Steagall Act, legislation that prevented commercial banks from investing in securities. Chafee said it was his first Senate vote after being appointed to his seat by then-Gov. Lincoln Almond because his father, who held the seat prior, had died.

Global warming

The Rhode Island House Commission on Economic Risk Due to Flooding and Sea Rise will meet at 2 p.m. Thursday to view presentations about flooding and current plans for rising sea levels in Rhode Island.

The commission will receive three presentations. Grover Fugate and Jim Boyd of the Rhode Island Coastal Resources Management Council will present on Newport, Westerly and the Providence Port, which will serve as case studies. Elizabeth Stone from the Office of Strategic Planning and Policy and Janet Coit, director of the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management, will also present at the meeting. Caitlyn Greely from the Department of Administration and Teresa Crean from the University of Rhode Island Coastal Resource Center will talk about businesses in North Kingstown dealing with climate change. The meeting will be open to the public.