Rhode Island voters to weigh in on state bond questions

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Rhode Island voters are heading to the polls on Tuesday, but instead of voting for candidates for state office, citizens are being asked to weigh in on seven bond measures for about $400 million in proposed state spending.

By far the largest is Question 1, which if approved, would authorize the state to borrow more than $107 million for several projects at the state’s three public colleges, including more than $57 million to rebuild the University of Rhode Island Fine Arts Center.

Question 2, if approved, would allow for the borrowing of $74 million for environmental and recreation projects including $33 million for state beaches, parks and campgrounds.

If approved, Question 3 would allow for the borrowing of $65 million to build and rehabilitate housing, particulary affordable units.

Question 4 would replenish $72 million in funding for state Department of Transportation construction projects.

Question 5 would borrow $15 million for the Department of Human Services to distribute to fix, expand or build new early childhood and daycare classrooms.

Question 6 would borrow $7 million for arts and cultural grants.

Question 7 would borrow $60 million to build new industrial parks and continue to pay for the reconstruction of piers at Quonset’s Port of Davisville.

Adding interest over the 20-year life of the bonds brings the total cost to an estimated $642 million, The Providence Journal reported.

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