Giannini: What’s In? What’s Out?

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What’s In

Fane Tower

Council President David Salvatore said he opposes the zoning change for the Fane project. The proposed high rise and apartment complex dubbed, the “High Point Tower”, along the Route I95 and Dyer Street corridor that has stirred up plenty of controversy. The building design and height have been major points of discussion as well as the location.

Salvatore, however said he is not opposed to building the project elsewhere in the city. But developer Jason Fane has stated he is only interested in that specific location. Time will tell who will prevail in what promises to be one of the most biggest decisions the city council will make this year. Stay tuned for more developments.

Meade Stadium

The University of Rhode Island’s Meade Stadium is getting an upgrade.URI has announced that two URI alums have pledged $1 million to renovate the stadium, which was built in 1928. The upgrades will include field turf and stadium lights. Completion is expected to be 2020.

The university will pitch in $1.1 million from an auxiliary fund. Now this is all well and good for URI, which has no problem raising money.

But to those of us who see our Providence schools crumbling in deterioration and the struggle to get money to fix them, it is troubling.

It is sad to think our city has to beg, borrow and not steal to try to fix the hazardous and unhealthy schools in Providence. Maybe some wealthy contributors, who got their start in our city, can contribute to the restoration of our city schools? By the way, it’s not an upgrade in our schools that is needed, it is major repairs for the health and safety of our students.

“Victory Day”

The holiday that’s unique to Rhode Island is Monday, August 13. Wickford will remember this low key holiday by placing flags in Wickford Village to mark Victory Day which observes the surrender of Japan to the allies in 1945, ending World War II. The flags will be placed by the North Kingstown Parade Committee.

This holiday has long been debated as unfair or unneeded but to veterans in Rhode Island it marks a day that ended a long and painful war.

What’s Out

Debate Debacle

Governor Gina Raimondo may not be open to debating her opponent Matt Brown. Matt Brown has said he is willing to debate her on all issues. The Governor has just as much said that Brown is not truthful when it comes to her record, and therefore she has not yet agreed to a debate.

Patricia Morgan wants more debates with Cranston Mayor Allan Fung.

Meanwhile, Cranston Mayor Alan Fung has agreed to one radio debate against his two primary opponents, Rep. Patricia Morgan and businessman Giovanni Feroce. Morgan and Feroce have both blasted Fung on his unwillingness to debate. Yes, both Raimondo and Fung are leading in the polls (taken by various sources). But does this give them a right to refuse a series of debates for the top office in Rhode Island? Of course not. Both are seasoned incumbents who should be engaging in debates willingly. 

Residency Rules

More and more candidates are being challenged on their residency. Every day we hear of challenges to candidates that they don’t live where they state they do. Several challenges have been made this year, including in the city council races against Luis Aponte and now Gerard Catala from Ward 9. 

Over the years plenty of rumors have said that candidates don’t live where they say. Just this week we saw former Rep. John Carnevale sentenced to 9 months home confinement for perjury in his court case involving residency. Candidates and elected officials should take a stiff look at this and remember it well. It’s okay to have a summer home, like the Kennedys and Bushes, but to not live in your district all-year long is taboo. Just ask Carnevale, who is paying a stiff price for it now.

Sign wars

The sign wars continue, for candidates who have no class, at least. If you see your opponent’s sign and go to put your sign next to it because you can’t bear the idea of them getting someone’s support please know that you are acting desperate. There’s an old saying in politics – running scared, running deep. And we are seeing it in my own neighborhood. 

There lawn signs popping up all over. Let’s respect everyone’s right to put a sign on their own property.

Campaign brochures in mail boxes

Also it is against the campaign laws (Title 18- Section 1725) to put your campaign brochure in mailboxes… and you don’t have to be a lawyer or judge to know that… So please follow the campaign rules. Those who make the rules, should also follow them… unless they think they are above the law or are the law?