Republican Fung wants to select judges differently
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - Gubernatorial candidate Allan Fung is calling for changes in the way judges are selected to remove political influence from the process.
Fung said Monday his proposals are in keeping with his campaign theme of reforming state government.
If elected, Fung said he would nominate judicial candidates and replace commissioners on the Judicial Nominating Commission promptly. He said he would prohibit lobbyists, politicians and their staffers from serving on the commission for one year after finishing their work in politics.
Fung said the governor's director of administration is leaving his post to be sworn in as a Superior Court judge. He said he would not appoint a director or any other employee to a judgeship while holding such a position.
Fung also proposed selecting magistrates in the same way as judges.
Raimondo highlights plans for 195 land
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - Gubernatorial candidate Gina Raimondo is reiterating her call to use land freed up by the relocation of Interstate 195 for a manufacturing "innovation institute."
The general treasurer says the state was once known as a manufacturing hub and can be again. Her so-called Rhode Island Innovation Institute would represent a collaboration of colleges and universities and the private sector where new products could be developed and brought to market.
Raimondo criticized the pace of progress on developing the parcel, saying "the missing ingredient is leadership."
Mayor Angel Taveras, one of Raimondo's rivals in the Sept. 9 Democratic primary, has countered that work is very much under way and he's taken steps to streamline the process.
The mayor has also said he wants to make Rhode Island an advanced manufacturing leader.
SHAVE ICE FIGHT
Shave ice vendor defies town's new ban on peddlers
WESTERLY, R.I. (AP) - A $3 cup of shave ice is at the center of a fight in Westerly, Rhode Island. The dispute pits street vendors trying to stay in business in the beach town against officials who say the vendors cause traffic congestion and increase the potential for accidents.
George Manko sells Hawaiian shave ice in a private parking lot for beachgoers in Westerly, where celebrities including Taylor Swift and Conan O'Brien have summer homes.
The town recently banned street vendors, except for at festivals and one-time events. Town councilors said they did so because the police chief expressed safety concerns.
Manko defiantly continues to serve the summer treat. He said he believes the councilors don't like the look of street vendors.
He pleaded not guilty in municipal court to violating the ordinance.
RHODE ISLAND FUGITIVE-ALABAMA ARREST
Man sought in RI sex crimes arrested in Ala
OZARK, Ala. (AP) - Police say a man wanted on child sex charges in Rhode Island is in custody in Alabama.
Authorities say 34-year-old Bruce Lee Kenyon of Pawtucket, Rhode Island, was jailed in Dale County on Monday awaiting extradition.
Police in Ozark say authorities in Rhode Island told them Kenyon might be in the area.
Kenyon was arrested during a tactical operation at a motel in Ozark.
The man is charged with five counts of child molestation.
Court records show Kenyon pleaded guilty in Alabama last month to a charge of being homeless and failing to register as a sex offender. He was sentenced to two years on probation.
DCYF SATELLITE OFFICE
RI considers closing DCYF satellite office
WOONSOCKET, R.I. (AP) - Rhode Island's Department for Children, Youth and Families is considering closing its satellite office in Woonsocket.
DCYF spokeswoman Joanne Lehrer tells The Woonsocket Call (http://bit.ly/1l6Bd5z ) that no final decision has been made, but confirmed the move is being considered as part of a budgetary consolidations.
She says if it is shut down, cases would be transferred to a Providence office that also handles cases from Pawtucket, Central Falls, Lincoln, Cumberland, Burrillville, North Smithfield, Johnston and Cranston.
The satellite office was established in response to a task force study that outlined problems with child abuse and neglect in the region.
Officials from several local social service agencies have signed a letter protesting the proposed closing.
HASBRO JOBS PROGRAM
Toymaker, nonprofit launch new jobs program
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - Hasbro is teaming with a Providence non-profit organization to train young people in poverty for permanent jobs at the Rhode Island based toy maker.
The Providence Journal reports (http://bit.ly/1l6vBZi ) that 15 students who are accepted into the Year Up Providence internship program next month will be trained for sales and marketing jobs at Hasbro.
Hasbro has agreed to invest more than $1 million to launch the program, and to hire at least 75 percent of those who complete the training. They also have promised to help place the remaining graduates in jobs at other companies.
Hasbro has been providing internships through the Year Up program since 2007. Seventy-three people graduate from that program on Monday with a full year of college credit.
Hundreds bicycle to Newport Folk Festival
NEWPORT, R.I. (AP) - Hundreds of music fans traveled to this year's Newport Folk festival by bicycle.
Bike Newport, which provided bicycle parking at the weekend event, says it parked about 1,000 bikes at the festival on Saturday.
That's about one-tenth of the crowd.
Other fans utilized water shuttles to get to the event, located at Fort Adams State Park, to avoid the long lines of traffic.
Gas prices drop 4 cents in Rhode Island
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - Gas prices in Rhode Island have fallen another 4 cents, but they're still a lot higher than the national average.
AAA Southern New England says Monday the latest weekly price survey shows the average cost of a gallon of self-serve regular in the state is $3.64. That's down 11 cents from a month ago.
Still, the current local price is 12 cents more than the national per-gallon average of $3.52.
Rhode Islanders were paying an average of $3.80, or 16 cents more, per gallon on average a year ago.
The AAA survey found a 55-cent range in prices, from a low of $3.32 a gallon to a high of $3.87 a gallon.
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