You need to contact your state senator as soon as possible and tell him or her in no uncertain words to veto this budget which has a $25 million benefit for ONE developer of a project that is neither wanted nor needed by a majority of Providence voters. I am paraphrasing PPS director Brent Runyon here because there is just no better way to say it.
As this session of the general assembly comes to its typically chaotic close (this is by design) the priorities of Senate President Dominick Ruggerio and Speaker of the House Nicholas Mattiello are becoming crystal clear. They are rewarding donors and making the unions happy at everyone else’s expense.
Occasionally their outright corruption is brought into the sunlight, and just in time. Thanks to Tim White of WPRI news, the $1 million earmarked for a Cranston chiropractor — a Mattiello neighbor and donor — got deep-sixed. [Thank you commenter for clarifying the role Steve Ahlquist of UpriseRI played in breaking this story. And big apologies to Steve! BC]
But on June 22 the House passed a $9.9 billion budget that includes lots of love for Jason Fane, an out-of-town billionaire with no ties to the city, no sense of decency, and no taste.
Brent Runyon, executive director of the Providence Preservation Society, has responded to the House budget and issued a call to action.
The budget includes a carved-out $25m tax credit for the Fane Organization’s Hope Point Tower, while the State is simultaneously stripping control of I-195 land from the City of Providence and suspending the State Historic Tax Credit program with over 60 projects on the waiting list.
We strongly urge you to take a moment and contact your state senator and tell him/her to veto this budget with an absurd $25m benefit for ONE developer of a project that is neither wanted nor needed by a majority of Providence voters.
So what did Mattiello include in his budget? The Fane tower bill overriding local control in Providence; the provisions copying one of the worst parts of the Trump tax cuts for the rich into state law; and very little was done about the brutal round of Medicaid cuts the Governor proposed. Oh and he cancelled the proposed minimum wage increase.