Tag Archives | Election 2010

Inauguration Providence Neighborhood Celebrations & Thank You! (Jan. 7)

The Providence Mayoral Inauguration events wrap up tomorrow with Mayor Taveras visiting the schools he attended in Providence:


The Inaugural Neighborhood Events are being held at the schools that Mayor Angel Taveras attended growing up as a child in the City of Providence. All events are free and open to residents and friends of the City of Providence. All events offer refreshments and are alcohol-free.

Friday, January 7, 2011
3 – 4 pm Mary Fogarty Elementary School
4 – 5 pm Roger Williams Middle School
5 – 6 pm Nathaniel Greene Middle School
6 – 7 pm Classical High School

Los eventos de inaugración en los vecindarios tendrán lugar en las escuelas en las cuales el Alcalde Angel Taveras asistió cuando estaba creciendo en la Ciudad de Providence. Todos los eventos son gratis y abiertos a los residentes y amigos de la Ciudad de Providence. Todos los eventos ofrecerán refrescos y serán libres de alcohol.

Viernes, 7 de enero, 2011
3 – 4 pm Escuela Primaria Mary Fogarty
4 – 5 pm Escuela Media Roger Williams
5 – 6 pm Escuela Media Nathaniel Greene
6 – 7 pm Escuela Secundaria Classical

For additional questions or information please e-mail or call 401.424.1841. Thank you for your continued support and participation as we work together to move Providence forward.


Governor Chafee’s Inaugural Address

Gov. LIncoln Chafee

Photo from yesterday’s Mayoral Inauguration. By Jef Nickerson

Prepared text of Governor Chafee’s Inaugural Address:

Governor Lincoln Chafee
Inaugural Address
January 4, 2011

With deep humility, aware of the adversity we face but confident that, together, we will meet the challenge of our times, I am honored to stand before you as our state’s 58th Governor.

I ask you to join with me in thanking Governor Carcieri for his service to Rhode Island over the past eight years.

F. Scott Fitzgerald once said that there are no second acts in America. Fortunately, he was not a political sage. I believe a second chance begins at this very moment”¦. not just for me, but for our wonderful state of Rhode Island and for each and every one of her citizens. Today, I humbly ask each Rhode Islander to join me in embarking on a new era of opportunity for Rhode Island.

I pledge to devote every ounce of energy I have to this task. Indeed, I will not rest until we reclaim the promise that lay in the heart of our founder Roger Williams some 375 years ago.

This magnificent building behind me is replete with symbols of that promise, from the great charter of 1663 that gave a king’s blessing to our “lively experiment,” to the flags that Rhode Islanders carried into battle against another king, in defense of our basic rights.

We were the first colony to stand up to the crown by signing the Declaration of Independence. And we were the last to ratify the Constitution as we prudently waited to be persuaded that America’s standard of freedom was as high as our own.

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What Cheer/What Jeer 2010

What Cheer/What Jeer was originally supposed to be a monthly, or a quarterly thing, but you know what, it is a lot of work putting a list like this together, so it has become an annual thing. So join us as we take a look back at 2010, What Cheering the good and What Jeering the bad.

whatcheerProvidence River Pedestrian Bridge

Whether you love it or hate it, Providence will soon be getting a new pedestrian bridge over the Providence River. Design firms large and small from around the world entered the competition that led to the winning design. And the competition got people around the city interested in transportation and design.



Last year we declared that 2010 would be “The Year of RIPTA” and not to be too smug about it but, we were kinda right.

In December 2009 RIPTA and the City of Providence released the Metro Transit Study, which drew a lot of attention to its proposal to run a streetcar line through Providence. This year, RIPTA embarked on their Core Connector Study, the first step toward bringing streetcars back to Providence. In June, U.S. Sec. of Transportation Ray LaHood visited Providence and was very excited about our future plans. RIPTA also took delivery of a new fleet of hybrid buses and trolleys in October. This year also saw RIPTA unveil a 5-year plan for the future of transit in Rhode Island. Finally, RIPTA hired a new CEO, Charles Odimgbe. It is early days yet in Mr. Odimgbe’s tenure, so it remains to be seen if he’ll be What Cheered or What Jeered next year.

Certainly all was not good for RIPTA this year, 2010 saw the continuation of an annual tradition wherein RIPTA’s budget falls short resulting in the agency looking to cut routes and/or increase fares. This year they went with increasing fares yet again. Here’s hoping the incoming Governor and General Assembly can work to address the issues surrounding RIPTA’s budget.

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Inauguration of the 37th Mayor of Providence, January 3

Mayor-elect Taveras and supporters celebrating on election night

Mayor-elect Angel Taveras’ inauguration is Monday, January 3, 2011. All inauguration events are free and open to the public.

All the details you need to know are on the Transition Providence website.

Importantly, though the events are free, you do need to register for the evening Inaugural Celebration at the Rhode Island Convention Center. Visit the Inauguration page and fill out the form. The form must be filled out for each person attending. For people without internet access, one can either submit a reservation for them (in their name), or they can pick-up tickets in person at the Rhode Island Convention Center December 28, 29, or 30 between 4pm and 6pm. Registrations need to be submitted by Dec. 28th.

This event is expected to reach capacity quickly, so register now if you want to attend. The event will be business casual and will feature desserts, live music, a cash bar, and a “special guest.”

The inauguration of Mayor Angel Taveras, the 37th Mayor of the City of Providence, will take place on Monday, January 3, 2011.

Schedule of Events:

  • 1:30 PM
    Swearing-In Ceremony (free and open to the public)
    Steps of City Hall, 25 Dorrance Street
  • 3:00 PM
    Reception (free and open to the public)
    City Hall, 25 Dorrance Street
  • 7:00 PM
    Inaugural Celebration (free, requires admission ticket – register below)
    Rhode Island Convention Center
    One Sabin Street, Providence

Inaugural Neighborhood Events – Friday, January 7, 2011

  • 3-4pm Mary Fogarty Elementary School
  • 4-5pm Roger Williams Middle School
  • 5-6pm Nathanael Green Middle School
  • 6-7pm Classical High School

See my disclosure regarding serving on the Mayor-elect’s Transition Committee. I was also invited to be a Inauguration Ambassador, which basically means they want me to tell people about the Inauguration, which I just did.


News & Notes

Photo (cc) Metro Transportation Library and Archive

GOP Wants to Bring Transpo Policy Back to the 1950s [DC.Streetsblog]

Apparently, for Republicans, the big target for cuts appears to be transit spending. Tymon suggested to the Road Gang that the current $8 billion allocated for transit annually could shrink to $5 billion. The Road Gang was, apparently, relieved to see that transit would bear the brunt of the burden of spending cuts.

Meanwhile, Tymon said the Republicans want to bring transportation spending back to it roots in the 1950s – interstate commerce and travel, with a strong focus on the National Highway System. It all adds up to a possible revision of the longstanding 80/20 ratio governing highway and transit spending, with transit losing ground. Tymon confirmed that a new calculus could be coming.

Confessions of a recovering engineer [Grist]

In retrospect I understand that this was utter insanity. Wider, faster, treeless roads not only ruin our public places, they kill people. Taking highway standards and applying them to urban and suburban streets, and even county roads, costs us thousands of lives every year. There is no earthly reason why an engineer would ever design a 14-foot lane for a city block, yet we do it continually. Why?

The answer is utterly shameful: Because that is the standard.

State, Columbus Center developers in $5.5m accord [The Boston Globe]

The developers of the failed Columbus Center development in Boston yesterday reached a legal settlement with state transportation officials in which they agreed to pay about $5.5 million in cash and other benefits to clean up the fallow work site along the Massachusetts Turnpike.

The settlement requires the developers to fund road work, landscaping, and other upgrades on four parcels where they had begun building. The project stalled due to funding difficulties in April 2008, and then died in March, leading to a dispute over the cleanup.

Meanwhile in Providence, we allow developers to build parking lots because of hardship. Man up Providence.

Woman reading e-mail before crash given probation [ProJo]

A South Kingstown woman accused of checking her e-mail just before crashing into a pedestrian — and then leaving the seriously injured woman in the road — has pleaded no contest to felony charges.

Wales was reading an e-mail attachment on her Blackberry as she drove on South Road in Wakefield on Oct. 4, 2009, at the same time that Sheila Brogna, of Wakefield, was walking home, according to the attorney general’s office. Wales paused, but then drove off, until the police stopped her. Brogna was seriously injured.

Switching Gears: More Commuters Bike To Work [NPR]

Cycling has at least tripled over the past two decades in big cities across the U.S.

“It’s almost like a snowball effect,” says researcher John Pucher of Rutgers University. “People see other people cycling and they say, ‘Wow!'”


Full disclosure regarding Transition Providence

Today the Transition Team for Mayor-Elect Taveras issued a press release announcing seven committees devoted to determining how to put Mr. Taveras’ campaign promises into action.

If you read the release closely, you’d have noticed that my name is on it. A couple weeks ago I was asked to be on the City Services Committee and accepted. So in the interest of full disclosure, I’m letting you, Greater City: Providence’s readers know.

I can assure you that I will continue to be as critical and snarky as ever when a critical eye and/or snark is warranted. It is an honor to be asked to provide input for the next administration though.

The City Services Committee will be meeting at least two more times (and we have split ourselves into subcommittees which are meeting more frequently), then we need to prepare a report for the Mayor-Elect by December 21st.

Head over to Nesi’s Notes on for a full list of all the committees and committee members.


News & Notes

Next American City: Who’s Scared of a Transit Bridge?

Next spring, Portland will begin building its first bridge over the Willamette River in 37 years. The Willamette River Transit Bridge – which will link a future Oregon Health & Science University campus on the west side of the river with a museum and opera house on the east – will be 71 feet wide and feature 14-foot-wide paths on both sides for bicycles and pedestrians. The bridge’s middle will provide space for public-transit vehicles but no private cars

The Transport Politic: As a New Congress Sets Up Shop, Questions About the Future of Transportation Funding

Grist: Cafes will be popping up on the streets of New York

Pop-up Cafes provide outdoor public seating in the curb lane during the warm months and promote local businesses. Such cafes are popular in Europe, where narrow sidewalks prevent sidewalk cafes, and have recently been established in California and Canada.

In the summer of 2010, DOT partnered with two Lower Manhattan restaurants to pilot the city’s first Pop-up Cafe. Building on this success, DOT is expanding the Program in 2011 by partnering with restaurants or cafes in up to 12 locations throughout the five boroughs.

Two words: Atwells. Avenue.

DC Streetsblog: The Power of the Pursestrings Shifts to a Livability Denier in the House

…flying under the radar is another big shift with potentially enormous consequences. The Transportation and HUD subcommittee on Appropriations is getting a new master too. And livability advocates are alarmed.

Rep. Tom Latham (R-IA) made it onto the League of American Bicyclists’ Trash Talk list this spring when he said every biker is “one less person paying into the transportation trust fund.”

DC Streetsblog: Our Stagnant Gas Tax Rate Is Making the Deficit Worse

Despite the anti-tax rhetoric of this round of elections, there’s been a little flurry of support for raising the gas tax lately. Two senators just proposed bumping it by 25 cents to replenish the highway trust fund. And the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform included a gas tax hike in its proposal for reducing the deficit by $3.8 trillion.


They also proposed eliminating the tax deduction for mortgage interest payments – or at least restricting the tax breaks so that second homes, expensive homes, and home equity loans weren’t eligible.

The mortgage tax break is a sprawl-inducer, encouraging people to buy “more house” for their money. Besides, home ownership rates are higher in the suburbs, since urbanites are more likely to rent. By removing the tax break, as the deficit commission recommends, they would require people to pay the full cost of the house they buy – and stop subsidizing the choice to live in the suburbs instead of cities.


News & Notes

News & Notes New RIPTA bus route proposed, coming right through Summit neighborhood [Summit Neighborhood Association]

Link shows a map of proposed routes. SNA is seeking comment and is deciding if they need to have a neighborhood meeting to discuss the proposed options.

My 2 cents, a bus route that serves Miriam directly is a good thing.

Investing in urban centers key to growing new U.S. economy: Brookings [International Business Times]

“When cities collect networks of entrepreneurial firms, smart people, universities and other supporting institutions in close proximity, incredible things happen,” [Bruce Katz, Director of the Metropolitan Policy Program at the Brookings Institution] wrote.

“People engage. Specializations converge. Ideas collide and flourish. New inventions and processes emerge in research labs and on factory floors. New products and companies follow.”

Continue Reading →


Transition Providence

Mayor-Elect Taveras has a new website up, It is early days so it is pretty light on content at the moment, but he is already seeking your feedback.

We’re looking forward to seeing more content on the site soon. In the meantime, feel free to discuss here what you want to see the new mayor get to work on.


Mayor-Elect Taveras also has a new Twitter for all you Twitterati to follow:

Follow @Angel_Taveras for transition updates and more.less than a minute ago via web


Happy Election Day!

Election 2010

This is it, the day we’ve all been waiting for, the first day of the 2012 campaign season. Ugh.

Before we get into that, let’s wrap up the 2010 campaign season by getting out and voting.

Head over to the Secretary of State’s website to get your sample ballot and find your polling place. Then get out there and vote, and tell your friends to vote, and give your grandma a ride to the polls to vote, then vote again.

Polls are open statewide until 9pm.

On Primary night, Ted Nesi had excellent coverage on his blog on I fully expect more excellent coverage tonight and highly recommend navigating there as the polls close. Ted will also likely have a Twitter storm of election coverage as well, if that’s your preferred media consumption medium, check him out here


News & Notes

The Providence Journal: Endangered properties

Really ProJo? Really!? You’re running a list of the Providence Preservation Society’s 10 Most Endangered Buildings and not anywhere in the piece mentioning that you requested and were given permission to tear one down, making it now the list of 9 Most Endangered Properties?

Way to do some reporting there.

StreetsBlog: “Forgiving” Distracted Driving Won’t Keep Our Streets Safe

Over at the National Journal’s transportation experts blog, Greg Cohen, president of the American Highway Users Alliance, wasn’t convinced that enforcement and driver responsibility are the answer. Writing that “we should admit that we all get distracted sometimes” and “enforced legislation and education can only go so far,” Cohen argued that engineering cars and roads to be more “forgiving” of driver inattention and carelessness is the way to go.


The Urban Times: 1970s Space Colony Art by NASA

Rhode Island Secretary of State: Register to Vote

Saturday, October 2nd is the deadline to register to vote in the General Election. I’m sure everyone is already registered because you voted in the Primary right? Well, just in case, you have until Saturday.

Chicago Business: After Daley’s retirement, Chicago needs a new approach

What Chicago really needs now is fewer ideas and orders from the top and more proposals and initiatives from the bottom. In the same way that this city’s economy is much better at applying than innovating, its political culture needs to be opened up so that new, better policies can be implemented.

:cut: Chicago :paste: Providence

Human Transit: the perils of average density

Sustainability advocates want higher urban densities for a range of reasons, but viability of public transit is certainly one of them. Meanwhile, advocates of car-dominance want to argue that existing low densities are a fact of life; since transit needs high density, they say, there’s just no point in investing in transit for those areas, so it’s best to go on planning for the dominance of cars.

Mees calls on his fellow transit advocates to let go of the idea that good transit requires high densities.


Happy Primary Election Day!

Primary election day is finally here. Polls in Providence are open 7am to 9pm. Some communities the polls open later than 7am, all polls statewide are open until 9pm, if you are in line by 9pm, you will be allowed to vote.

ProJo has a rundown of voter Primary information here.

The Secretary of State’s Office has all the info you need, polling places, poll hours, sample ballots, etc., here.

And if you haven’t decided yet, you can read our Mayoral Candidate Surveys:
Angel Taveras
John Lombardi

Feel free to let us know in the comments area, your election day experiences. If you take some interesting primary day photos, please share them in our Flickr Group. And if you haven’t already, get to the polls and vote.


WBNA Candidates Night, Tonight

When: Tuesday, September 7, 2010 from 5:30pm-8:30pm

Meet & mingle with candidates from 5:30pm-6:00pm. City Council Forum begins promptly at 6:00pm; House and Senate Forum begins at 7:15pm.

Where: WBNA, 1560 Westminster Street

WBNA invites you to meet local city and state candidates and ask questions about neighborhood issues.

City council candidates from Wards 13 & 15 and Democratic Primary Candidates from House from Districts 8 & 9 and Senate Districts 2 & 6 have been invited. The evening will be moderated by Mike Ritz, Executive Director, Leadership Rhode Island and John Taraborelli, Assistant Editor of Providence Media, will keep time.


  • Ward 13 Candidates
    Steven Meresi, Bryan Principe
  • Ward 15 Candidates
    Josephine DiRuzzo, Sabina Matos
  • Democratic Primary House District 8 Candidates
    Nathan Barchus, Anthony Scarcella, Michael Tarro
  • Democratic Primary House District 9 Candidates
    Anastasia Williams, Wynnel Wilson
  • Democratic Primary Senate District 2 Candidates
    Juan Pichardo, Luis Pimentel
  • Democratic Primary Senate District 6 Candidates
    Mario Mancero, Harold Metts

Preservation Matters – Mayoral Candidates Forum

Providence Preservation Society
Mayoral Candidates Forum

Preservation Matters

When: Thursday, September 9, 2010 5:30pm-7:30pm
Where: Providence Public Library Auditorium – 150 Empire Street (enter on Washington St)

Send your questions in advance to Get to know the candidates’ position on issues that impact the quality of life in Providence’s neighborhoods. For further details, please call PPS Preservation & Advocacy Coordinator Kathleen Philp at 831-7440.


Voter Registration Deadline This Saturday (Aug. 14)

Reminder, the Voter Registration deadline for the September Primary is this Saturday, August 14. Voter Registration information can be found on the Board of Elections website.

The site instructs you to mail your registration to the Board of Canvassers, at this late date though, we would suggest submitting your form in person. In Providence, bring it to City Hall. The Board of Canvassers is on the first floor, go in the Washington Street entrance, first door on the left. The office is open from 8:30am to 4:00pm.

If you are not sure if you are registered to vote, it doesn’t hurt to check, visit the Secretary of State’s website.

And as you’re deciding who to vote for, check out our Mayoral Candidate Surveys:


Mayoral Candidates Survey: John Lombardi

Election 2010

Greater City Providence sent surveys to all candidates for Mayor of Providence who qualified to be on the ballot. Below is the survey submitted by John Lombardi.

John Lombardi

Facebook: John J. Lombardi
Twitter: @JohnJLombardi

Candidate photo courtesy of the Lombardi campaign


1. Other Cities
It isn’t always necessary to reinvent the wheel when it comes to best practices. Across the globe small cities like Providence are doing amazing things to make their cities more livable, increase their tax base, and improve services. What city (or cities) do you look to for inspiration of what you would like Providence to be like or to strive for? What are the characteristics of those cities that you think Providence should emulate?

Prior to identifying inspirational cities, I respectfully propose the following vision that would guide and measure the success of my administration if elected mayor of Providence, RI.

Our Vision of Providence, RI

Providence will become one of the top ten U.S. cities in terms of jobs, economic growth, public safety, education, and commitment to environmental sustainability, and overall livability by the year 2018.

Our city will attract people with great ideas to create a collaborative network that expands the economic base, resulting in a desirable and vibrant city where we will live in harmony, learn together, work together, and where our children play together and grow together.

Providence will build a small business-friendly environment by establishing the Providence Main Street Business Exchange. We will use our city’s many resources to develop and offer programs that help entrepreneurs build their businesses by establishing Providence as an Innovation Zone. Our businesses, non-profit organizations, communities, and city government will work closely to create a thriving economy that provides livable wages, creates widespread job opportunities, and empowers people to prosper and live dignified lives.

Residents in all of our communities will be safe. Each community will be an inviting place where we know and help our neighbors. Our diverse communities will be empowered to interact in quality activities that make a difference in people’s lives, improve their communities, and live in healthy environments, including life-long learning opportunities, high quality schools, the best network of hospitals and universities, and decent, affordable housing.

Providence will be a national Destination of the Arts by further developing its Downtown Arts & Entertainment District, and by offering ready-access to great shopping, recreation, food and world-class entertainment.
Providence city government will be more accessible, accountable, available, effective, reliable, responsive, and transparent to the needs of our community.

Other Cities

The cities that I look to for inspiration will be cities that contain characteristics and/or best practices in the pursuit and realization of our vision of Providence, RI.

  • The City of Portland, Oregon, serves as a model in developing collaboration between city government and the public through its creation of the Public Involvement Advisory Council, a standing City board comprised of volunteer community members and City bureaus committed to improving citywide public involvement in planning, decision-making and implementation. Portland is also distinctive in its commitment to environmental sustainability; quality of living; well-developed intermodal commuting options, and its regional government.
  • Austin, Texas, rated number 3 Best Big City in “Best Places to Live” by Money magazine in 2009 is a city to emulate in pursuing our vision. Known as “The Live Music Capital of the World”, Austin has a robust arts and entertainment industry with the televised music program called “Austin City Limits” and the annual Austin City Limits Music and Arts Festival. Moreover, the University of Texas is central to Austin’s economy as well as providing a high quality workforce to local businesses.
  • Boston, Massachusetts, is a knowledge-based economy model that draws and retains young talented and creative people because of its rich community amenities and quality of life. Boston’s 65 colleges and universities, 35 hospitals, and 3 preeminent medical schools strongly attract the brightest people to Boston’s knowledge industry. These educational and research institutions direct the high quality, high demand and high paying workforce to create and transform ideas into solutions for customers. This in turn draws federal government and industrial research dollars to Boston. This infusion of capital helps Boston to provide capital for start-ups and to help sustain the growth of small companies. Boston retains talented people through its system of high quality education, cultural events, and the facilitation of business entrepreneurship.
  • Miami, Florida, is a city that transformed itself by connecting the city with the world through international trade; that is, Miami developed an export industry that provides value added services. The people’s strong cultural ties to Latin America, the Caribbean and Western Europe led to an external strategy of connecting Miami through trade, particularly with its modern infrastructure and intermodal transportation and logistics system. With Providence and its port strategically located in the Ocean State, Providence can use Miami’s best practices in connecting with the world through international trade.
  • Finally, Charlotte, North Carolina, serves as a paradigm in governance through its groundbreaking use of the Balanced Scorecard. Developed by Robert S. Kaplan and David P. Norton, the Balanced Scorecard is a relatively new framework for managing the performance of an organization. With the Balanced Scorecard, the City of Charlotte had a management system that integrated departments, focused on high-impact programs, and actions designed to contribute towards achieving the city’s mission and vision.

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Mayoral Candidates Survey: Angel Taveras

Election 2010

Greater City Providence sent surveys to all candidates for Mayor of Providence who qualified to be on the ballot. We planned to post the results of the survey on the website because we believe that while not everyone can get to scheduled coffee hours, rallies, and other important functions, people still want to make an informed, thoughtful decision about who will lead Providence. As of press time, the only complete survey we received was from candidate Angel Taveras, that survey is published below. Other candidate surveys may be posted as we receive them.

Angel Taveras

Facebook: Angel For Providence (fan) and Angel Taveras (friend)
Twitter: @AngelForProv
Contact: Lauren Nocera, Campaign Manager
Phone: 401-484-1288

Mount Pleasant resident Angel Taveras grew up on the South Side, where he attended Head Start before the Providence Public Schools, Harvard University and Georgetown Law. A former Housing Court Judge, he was instrumental in the development of systems to support homeowners dealing with foreclosure, to streamline the interaction between Inspectors and the Court and to improve code enforcement tracking. Angel has profound commitment to public service; Angel was a founding board member of New Urban Arts, served on the board of the Providence Plan, on the International Institute’s Board of Advisers, and was a founding member of RI Latino PAC.

Candidate photo by Jesse Banks III


1. Other Cities
It isn’t always necessary to reinvent the wheel when it comes to best practices. Across the globe small cities like Providence are doing amazing things to make their cities more livable, increase their tax base, and improve services. What city (or cities) do you look to for inspiration of what you would like Providence to be like or to strive for? What are the characteristics of those cities that you think Providence should emulate?

Providence can learn from the best practices at work in different cities across America. I will name here just a few.

  • Portland, Oregon: Portland is a national leader in light-rail and streetcar transportation. As Mayor of Providence, I will look to Portland in designing twenty-first century transportation infrastructure that reduces road congestion, protects open space and promotes green, sustainable living.
  • New York City, New York: New York City is a national leader in education reform. Under the leadership of School Chancellor Joel Klein, the NYC DOE has dramatically increased student achievement by creating small schools, focusing on teacher recruitment, training, evaluation and development and by supporting high performing urban charter schools.
  • Chicago, Illinois: The City of Chicago has done exemplary work in using twenty-first century technology to deliver city services and respond to constituent needs. Chicago was one of the first American cities to implement a “3-1-1″ hotline for non-emergency requests and the City has won awards for using the system to predict and prevent weather related disturbances.
  • Seattle, Washington: Seattle has done impressive work in the area of environmental sustainability. Specifically, Seattle lowered their 2008 emissions by 7 percent below 1990 levels, despite undergoing a population increase of 16% during the same period. Seattle also has an urban composting program that I will replicate as Mayor.
  • Newark, New Jersey: I traveled to Newark to campaign for Cory Booker and I truly believe that he is one of the best urban Mayors in America. His direct communications with voters via new media and his regular night patrols with the police department – both to build relationships with the police and to build trust with the community – are two characteristics that I will bring to the office of Mayor.

2. Infrastructure
Our city’s infrastructure has been poorly maintained for decades. Streets, sidewalks, parks… all are in dire straights across the city. The city needs a comprehensive plan to fix what is broken and maintain our infrastructure properly going forward so that we do not return to the sad state we are in now. How will your administration address our infrastructure crisis managerially and financially?

Infrastructure matters. And it will be a top priority for my Administration. Our City cannot succeed without first guaranteeing that we can maintain strong and safe streets, bridges, sidewalks, sewers, parks, school buildings and other infrastructure needs.

Technology can help in this regard. I will create a citizen dashboard using state of the art technology so that City residents can report potholes, broken streetlights or jammed traffic meters with their cell phones. Anyone who reports a problem will receive a personal follow-up email that details the actions taken to solve the problem.

Regarding known infrastructure problems, we will start at square one. My administration will create a public database of every piece of City infrastructure in need of repair and prioritize based on safety and cost effectiveness. Whether through leveraging federal and state dollars or issuing bonds, we will find the resources necessary to maintain our City’s infrastructure.

We need these changes because the status quo is simply unacceptable. For too long, patronage has governed which streets get plowed or which roads get repaired or which house got a new sidewalk. In my administration, infrastructure repairs will be conducted by need and not by politics.

I want to note that while I recognize the need for a city-wide, comprehensive plan, I am also specifically committed to infrastructure improvements in the City’s emerging Knowledge District and other coordinated economic investment zones. I will invest in transportation infrastructure, fiber optic communication lines, labs and business incubators, and other infrastructure improvements in water, sewer, gas and electric services. I am convinced that these investments will help continue to transform the Knowledge District into Rhode Island’s center for creativity and entrepreneurship.

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