Several months after our council deliberated at multiple Town Council meetings, I recently received two inquiries about the proposed roundabout at the intersection of Boston Neck, Philips, and Brown streets. In light of the questions posed by these citizens I thought I would write to our community to explain the process, what has transpired, and the current status of the proposed roundabout.
In an intercollegiate sailing race years ago, an opponent lied to race officials in order to have my team disqualified and his standing improved, something he boasted about when he did not recognize me at a different event a few months later. Refusing to be embarrassed, he said it couldn’t have been cheating because the officials were involved. I learned then that some people imagine winning is always justified, by any means necessary.
We know that sometimes politicians make promises during their campaign. These promises may be ignored and forgotten after the person is elected.
Seldom do these broken promises result in hardship to thousands of people.
Unfortunately, with Councilor Ewa Dzwierzynski’s recent vote to support the three college student limit ordinance, she has broken her promises and negatively impacted thousands of people – students, parents and families, homeowners and voters.
Happily, on Aug. 18, 2021, three members of the Narragansett Town Council acted on behalf of the residents. By a three-two vote, Councilmembers Jesse Pugh, Ewa Dzwierzynski, and Deborah Kopech passed a no-more-than-three students per rental unit ordinance residents have been waiting 25 years to achieve.
North Kingstown school committee member and co-founder of a group calling itself TANK (“Towards an Anti-racist North Kingstown”) Jennifer Lima and her friends desperately continue their effort to convince us that North Kingstown is a “systemically racist” community – especially in its schools.
Aquaculture, and especially oyster farming in the Wickford area, has a long history of commercial, small business, activity that has, does, and should continue be allowed to prosper.
I have had to adopt a blank face to hate in our community and it is not easy. It has my heart pounding and my blood pressure up in the too high zone. If hate has such a powerful negative effect on my body and in my spirit as a grown person in a public school, how does it affect the children? All of the children?
The public’s business should be open to the public. And under Rhode Island law, it is. Yet when mom Nicole Solas sought to attend the meeting of a publicly funded committee that meets weekly to discuss and make recommendations on policies that apply across her daughter’s school district, she was told that the meeting was closed and parents were not welcome.
Now, the Goldwater Institute is pushing back: We’ve joined with the Stephen Hopkins Center for Civil Rights in Rhode Island to represent Nicole in a complaint before the state attorney general asserting that the school district has violated Rhode Island’s Open Meetings Act (OMA) by closing these meetings to the public.
The head-spinning piece by state historian laureate Patrick Conley (“Remembering RI’s overlooked Olympian,” Aug. 5) should win a medal for logical long jump. With no effort he pivots in one brief paragraph from the approach, an appreciation of a 1912 Olympic track medalist, to a ridiculous leap in which George Washington is in an airplane – his point being to scorn those of us who think the Founders might have done more to bring American freedoms to the enslaved people that enriched them.
It is time for the Town Council to pass the Three College Student Ordinance – again.
Earlier this year, Narragansett 2100 sued the town regarding the process of passing the ordinance over Zoom meetings. Judge Taft Carter ruled that the town must go through the hearing process again because of a process technicality. The ordinance itself is sound.
On July 29, Rhode Island Gov. Dan McKee and representatives from small businesses and state government held a virtual meeting on a proposed action agenda to address the needs of our state’s small businesses in the upcoming Fiscal 2022-2023 state budget. Several of the usual items were brought up, including access to financing and easing burdensome regulations.
However, one important issue was not addressed during the forum. In particular, what will Rhode Island do to help support and grow our state’s self employed, sole proprietors, independent contractor and gig workers?
John Kinsella’s great baseball novel Field of Dreams popularized the phrase “Go the distance.” I regard it also as an exhortation to runners — from the mile to the marathon.
With the Tokyo Olympics now in the spotlight, it is fitting to fix the beam on an early and overlooked Rhode Island-born Olympian who went the distance faster than anyone in his era of competition. That athlete, a Providence native, who starred first at Providence’s Hope High School and then at Brown University, was Norman Stephen Taber.
At the last town council meeting the water department reported the results of a risk and resilience assessment required by America’s Water Infrastructure Act of 2018 completed by the MRB Group, of Rochester, NY, an independent consultant.
Given the fact that water scarcity is a national and global concern, I thought the results of this report would have generated more public interest.
On July 6, Narragansett Town Council member Patrick Murray proposed amending a Town Ordinance in a manner which would have allowed the town to compel property owners to allow entrance into a home to inspect an owner’s waste pipe for an illegal sump pump connection.
Esteemed superintendents and school committees,
Thank you for guiding our schools during such an incredibly tumultuous period. It is with much respect and appreciation that I urge you to consider the following points as you craft mask policies for the upcoming school year.
As RIDOH passes off the department’s mask mandates to local school districts, the Department of Health is also passing along legal liability for any and all negative impacts of mask mandates on children.