Rhode Island Report

Rhode Island Report

A weekly podcast from The Boston Globe on what’s bubbling in Rhode Island news. In-depth interviews with newsmakers, perspective and analysis from Globe Rhode Island reporters, and intimate conversations with community members across the state.

Episodes

October 20, 2021 14 min

Governor Dan McKee joins us in the studio to talk about his first seven months as governor and his plan for spending $1.1 billion in federal COVID relief funds. He also fires back at critics of his administration's decision to award a lucrative education contract to ILO, a consulting firm with ties to his long-term ally. Tips and ideas? Email us at rinews@globe.com.

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The Rhode Island Political Cooperative aims to run up to fifty progressives for local and statewide offices, but not all progressives are onboard with its approach. The group has been criticized for challenging liberal incumbents and supporting candidates with questionable social media posts. One of the Coop’s co-founders, Jennifer Rourke, joins us to clarify what the group is all about.

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The Papitto Opportunity Connection is a new foundation that’s dedicated to supporting nonprofits and businesses in local communities of color. In its first 10 months, the organization has given away more than 7 million dollars. We talk to the founder, Barbara Papitto, and Arnell Milhouse, a member of the foundation’s advisory board.

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September 29, 2021 13 min

Five Democrats are competing in next week’s primary to be the new senator for the east side of Providence. What’s the difference between the candidates? What factors will affect who wins? And why should the rest of the state care? Globe columnist Dan McGowan helps us sort it all out. Tips and ideas? Email us at rinews@globe.com.

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Jorge Elorza has a big campaign account and plenty of name recognition. So why did he pull out of the governor's race? Ed Fitzpatrick talks to the mayor about his decision, what’s next for him politically, and what he’ll do with his remaining time in office. Tips and ideas? Email us at rinews@globe.com.

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Tens of thousands of people have escaped Afghanistan after the take-over by the Taliban. And up to 250 of them might be headed to Rhode Island. Ed Fitzpatrick talks with Omar Bah, the head of an organization that plans to help them, and Negina Sadat, who made the very same journey six years ago. Tips and ideas? Email us at rinews@globe.com.

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September 8, 2021 19 min

Brown University professor Baylor Fox-Kemper, a lead author of a new United Nations climate report, sits down with Globe RI's Brian Amaral to talk about rising seas, the potential impact on Rhode Island, and what Rhode-Islanders can do to stem the tide. Tips and ideas? Email us at rinews@globe.com.

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Judge O. Rogeriee Thompson was the first Black woman to serve on Rhode Island's district and superior courts. She has served on the 1st Circuit Court of Appeals in Boston since 2010, and was the first Black judge and second woman on the that court. Judge Thompson discusses what she learned from her family, why the judicial system must reflect society, and how she came to write such distinctive opinions. Tips and ideas? Email us...

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August 25, 2021 19 min

In the wake of Tropical Storm Henri, Ed Fitzpatrick talks to two guests about what was -- and what could have been. Globe RI reporter Carlos Muñoz describes what it felt like on the ground as the storm barreled into the coastline. Marc Pappas, director of the Rhode Island Emergency Management Agency, discusses the statewide impact, and how it could have been far worse. Tips and ideas? Email us at rinews@globe.com.

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One hundred and twenty-nine people were exonerated of crimes in the United States last year, meaning they were cleared of their guilt and set free after wrongful convictions. Scott Hornoff is one such exoneree. In 2003, he was released from prison after spending more than six years behind bars for a crime he didn’t commit. Now, he’s the advocate behind a new Rhode Island law that will provide money and support for people who have s...

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Ocean Staters pride themselves on the state’s beautiful coastline and summers on the water. But, in actuality, only a fraction of Rhode Island’s beaches are accessible to the public. And when the majority of an area is privatized or locally restricted, it inevitably means some communities are being left out. 

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Last year, less than eight percent of state business contracts were awarded to minority owned enterprises. That’s below the ten percent marker promised by the state, and could mean a hefty loss of income for minority owned businesses already struggling to keep up with white-owned competitors. Ed Fitzpatrck talks with Rep. Karen Alzate about the needs of minority owned businesses, and what’s top of mind for the state’s legislative B...

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With August marking the 56th anniversary of the Voting Rights Act, Ed Fitzpatrick sits down with veteran civil rights leader Clifford Montiero. At 83, Montiero has spent more than 60 years fighting for equal voting rights in Rhode Island and across the country. But there's so much more work to be done, he says. Tips and ideas? Email us at rinews@globe.com.

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Every year, the Newport Folk and Jazz festivals take over Fort Adams in Newport for two unforgettable celebrations of music and community. Every year, that is, except last year, when COVID forced their cancellation. Jay Sweet, executive producer and director of the Newport festivals, talks about getting through a rough 2020; how the festivals will be different this summer; and what he’s most excited about as he welcomes musicians a...

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Dan McGowan talks with Angélica Infante-Green about how the pandemic changed our understanding of student learning, where Rhode Island should spend federal education dollars, and whether she’d be willing to send her own children to Providence schools. Tips and ideas? Email us at rinews@globe.com.

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In the last month, the Atlantic Shark Institute has tagged more great white sharks off the coast of Rhode Island than they have in any year prior. Globe Rhode Island reporter Amanda Milkovits talks with Jon Dodd, executive director of the Atlantic Shark Institute, about his decades-long passion for sharks, the important role these animals play in the health of the ocean, and what shark behavior can tell us about climate change.

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Peter Neronha has been Rhode Island's attorney general since January 2019, working on big-news topics like gun violence, hate crimes, and police misconduct. Ed Fitzpatrick talks with the attorney general about growing trends in violent crime, the argument for getting body cameras on all Rhode Island police officers, and what the state needs to do better to address crimes rooted in bigotry and bias.

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Speaker of the Rhode Island House Joseph Shekarchi is wrapping up his first term in what many call the most powerful position in state government, leading the Legislature through its first full session in the pandemic. Ed Fitzpatrick talks with the speaker about the biggest issues facing the state, including marijuana legalization, charter schools, and what to do about towns that resist affordable housing.

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As a member of the state’s COVID-19 Equity Council, Dr. Pablo Rodriguez has made it his mission to ensure every Rhode Islander, regardless of neighborhood, income or identity, has access to accurate pandemic resources, and access to the COVID-19 vaccine. Dr. Rodriguez joins Ed Fitzpatrick to discuss COVID’s disproportionate impact on Rhode Island’s Latino population, what needs to be done to combat vaccine misinformation, and what ...

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Sabina Matos is Rhode Island's 17th lieutenant governor. She's also the first woman of color to hold the second-highest office in the state. She talks about how her background and experience inform her work at the State House, how NIMBYism impedes affordable housing, and how she plans to run as a team with Governor Dan McKee in 2022. Tips and ideas? Email us at rinews@globe.com.

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