PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — A new mayoral portrait is being unveiled at Providence City Hall.
U.S. Rep. David Cicilline, a Rhode Island Democrat, served two terms as mayor of Providence before...
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The Providence City Council has given initial approval to an ordinance banning single-use plastic bags in the city.
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The mayor of Providence says he is pulling the plug on a plan to monetize the city's water system.
Democratic Mayor Jorge Elorza had previously touted the legislation...
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza says the city will make 700 more electric bicycles available for rental.
The JUMP bike influx will increase the total number of bikes...
City officials consider housing discrimination ban
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Providence officials are considering an ordinance that would ban landlords from refusing people with housing vouchers.
Providence officials propose emergency parking bans
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The Providence City Council is considering new guidelines for emergency parking bans.
WJAR-TV reports that the ordinance would create an emergency parking ban if...
Bill would create $15 minimum wage for city workers
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — A group of Providence lawmakers have introduced legislation that would require a $15 minimum wage for Providence city workers.
Providence approves nearly $390K in severance
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Providence has approved nearly $390,000 in severance packages to former city employees.
WPRI-TV reports records dating back to 2015 show 26 former employees received...
Providence superintendent to resign at end of school year
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The superintendent of Providence Public Schools is resigning at the end of the school year.
Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza announced Christopher Maher's resignation in...
Providence schools boost access to feminine hygiene products
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Providence is making feminine hygiene products available to students for free in all the city's high schools and middle schools.
Officials postpone deciding ex-HR director’s severance
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Providence officials have postponed deciding on a $127,000 severance package for the city's former human resources director.
Lawmakers submit bill to monetize Providence water system
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Providence lawmakers have again submitted a bill to monetize the Rhode Island city's water system.
The bill announced Wednesday would allow the Providence Water Supply Board to partner with outside water authorities with limited rate increases while maintaining public oversight.
The city has been discussing an arrangement with the quasi-public Narragansett Bay Commission over the past year.
Providence faces potential shortfall from budget proposal
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo's budget proposal could leave Providence with a $4 million hole in its current budget if it is approved by lawmakers later this year.
Cranston man arrested for alleged threat to Providence mayor
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — A Cranston man has been charged with threatening Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza on Facebook.
Police say 59-year-old Bruce Valliere was arrested Thursday on a felony charge of threatening a public official and a misdemeanor charge of disorderly conduct.
It is unclear whether Valliere is represented by an attorney who could comment on his behalf.
Police investigate alleged threat to Providence mayor
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Providence police are investigating an online threat made against Mayor Jorge Elorza.
WPRI-TV reports that the suspect, who has not been charged, allegedly wrote that Elorza would be walking with a limp if he walks by the man.
Police were notified about the Facebook post Tuesday afternoon.
State treasurer says Providence pension a big challenge
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Rhode Island's state treasurer says Providence's underfunded pension system is the state's biggest challenge.
Providence schools face swelling budget shortfall
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The Providence School Department's budget shortfall is expected to swell to $42 million by 2024.
The shortfall is expected to increase despite the fact that Democratic Mayor Jorge Elorza is projecting large surpluses for the city budget in coming years.
Former candidate for Lt. Gov. to be policy aide to mayor
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — A Democrat who ran narrowly lost a bid for lieutenant governor in Rhode Island has a new job with the Providence mayor's office.
Former state Rep. Aaron Regunberg will serve as a senior policy advisor to Mayor Jorge Elorza, working on issues including universal pre-kindergarten and affordable housing.
He plans to work full-time for the mayor until the fall when he will transition into a part-time role as he enters Harvard Law School.
Providence Mayor Elorza to be sworn into a second term
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza is preparing to begin a second term in office.
The inauguration for the Democratic mayor is scheduled for 2 p.m. Monday on the stairs of Providence City Hall. There will be performances beforehand.
Elorza fended off a challenge from independent Dee Dee Witman in November. He promised improvements to the city's finances, schools and quality of life.
Report: Providence closes year with $9.2M operating surplus
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Providence closed out the 2017-2018 fiscal year with a $9.2 million operating surplus.
Providence mayor looks to land water deal, universal pre-K
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza says negotiating a deal for the city's water supply board and creating a universal pre-kindergarten program are his top two priorities as he moves into his second term.
Officials approve land sale deal for proposed skyscraper
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — A Rhode Island commission has approved a $3.1 million sale of property in Providence to a developer who wants to build a 46-story luxury apartment tower there.
Providence strip club to remain closed for several more days
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — A well-known Rhode Island adult entertainment club will remain closed for several more days as police and city officials investigate allegations of prostitution at the site.
The Providence Board of Licenses voted Thursday night to keep the Foxy Lady closed through Monday, when the board meets again.
City Council overrides veto on skyscraper project
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The Providence City Council has voted to override a mayoral veto in favor of a proposed 46-story skyscraper.
Council members voted 10-3 during a special meeting Thursday to override Democratic Mayor Jorge Elorza's veto on a zoning change that will allow the planned Hope Point Tower in Providence.
If built, the skyscraper will be the tallest building in the state.
City Council head has no plans to revisit skyscraper project
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The head of the Providence City Council isn't planning to try to override a mayoral veto that jeopardizes a plan for a 46-story skyscraper, a spokesman said Monday.
Democratic Mayor Jorge Elorza vetoed a zoning change that would have allowed the proposed Hope Point Tower in Providence. If built, it would be the tallest building in the state.
The council could override the veto, and the state's legislative leaders have asked councilors to do so.
Providence skyscraper project in jeopardy after mayoral veto
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Democratic Mayor Jorge Elorza has vetoed a zoning change that would've allowed a proposed 46-story skyscraper in Providence.
The City Council voted last week to approve a variance raising the maximum building height to 600 feet for New York developer Jason Fane's proposed Hope Point Tower.
Elorza says he vetoed the change Friday because the city wouldn't have final approval of the tower's design.
Free parking returns to Providence for holiday shopping
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Providence is again extending the holiday tradition of free street parking in several city neighborhoods to encourage shoppers to buy local.
The city began offering two hours of free parking on Friday. Free parking will be offered through Jan. 1 in commercial districts including downtown, around Atwells Avenue, Broad Street, Olneyville Square, Wayland Square and on Hope, Thayer and Wickenden Streets.
Councilors approve zoning change for skyscraper project
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Providence officials have approved a zoning change that will allow a proposed 46-story skyscraper in the city.
The City Council voted Tuesday to approve the variance that raises the maximum building height at Parcel 42 to 600 feet for New York developer Jason Fane's proposed Hope Point Tower. If built, it would be the tallest building in the state.
The measure will now go to Mayor Jorge Elorza for approval.
Zoning change for skyscraper project up for final vote
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Providence officials are scheduled to give a final vote on a zoning change to allow a proposed 46-story skyscraper.
Providence teachers approve contract
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Teachers in Providence have approved a new contract with the city.
Teachers voted to approve the new contract in a 930-23 vote on Thursday. It now goes to City Council for ratification.
The new contract calls for a 2 percent salary increase retroactive to September and two other pay raises. Under the contract, teachers will keep their health care benefits and their sick day provisions.
City asks for help in search for annual holiday tree
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The Providence Department of Art, Culture and Tourism is asking residents to nominate their evergreen trees for consideration as the centerpiece of City Hall's annual tree-lighting ceremony.
Committee supports zoning change for skyscraper project
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Officials in Providence are supporting a zoning change that would allow a proposed 46-story skyscraper.
The Providence City Council Ordinance Committee voted Thursday to recommend approval to raise the maximum building height at Parcel 42 to 600 feet. The committee had previously denied recommending a zoning change for New York developer Jason Fane's proposed Hope Point Tower.
Councilor Jo-Ann Ryan says Providence needs "to embrace developers."
Providence teachers reach tentative contract agreement
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The Providence Teachers Union has reached a tentative contract agreement with the city that includes pay raises and more professional development.
The proposal will head to the union's 1,900 members next Thursday, and if approved, it will go to City Council for ratification. Teachers have been working without a contract since August 2017.
Teachers have operated under a work-to-rule provision since August, which means they only do what's contractually required.
Incumbent mayors in Providence, other cities win re-election
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Incumbent mayors across Rhode Island have won re-election.
Democratic Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza (HOR'-hay ay-LOR'-sah) won a second term Tuesday after fending off a challenge from independent Dee Dee Witman. Elorza ran on his record, promising more improvements to the city's finances, schools and quality of life.
He has been critical of President Donald Trump's immigration policies.
Democratic Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza wins second term, fending off a challenge from independent Dee Dee Witman
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Democratic Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza wins second term, fending off a challenge from independent Dee Dee Witman.
Providence establishes tax on vacant, abandoned properties
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Providence city officials say they have established a tax on vacant and abandoned properties citywide.
Top Providence mayoral candidates hold final debate
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza and challenger Dianne Witman have met in their final debate before next week's election.
Elorza, a Democrat, and Witman, who is running as an independent, sparred over a range of topics during the 30-minute debate hosted by WPRI-TV on Friday.
Providence officials consider repealing smoking ban
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Providence officials are considering repealing an ordinance that bans smoking in parts of the city's downtown area.
WPRI-TV reports Mayor Jorge Elorza and Democratic City Councilman Sam Zurier both support reversing the ban. Zurier says he was told the ban would be temporary.
Independent challenger outspends Elorza in October
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Independent Dianne Witman has spent twice as much in the Providence mayoral race as incumbent Mayor Jorge Elorza since the beginning of October.
WPRI-TV reports filings show Witman has spent $168,000 since Oct. 1 while Elorza has spent $71,000. The first-time candidate formally announced her campaign in late September. Most of the spending in October has contributed toward advertising and mailers.
Residents urged to drop off unused pills at police stations
BOSTON (AP) — Officials are encouraging Massachusetts residents to drop off expired and unwanted medications at police stations this weekend.
National Prescription Drug Take Back Day is Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Police stations and other locations across the state will have drop boxes where residents can leave unused pills.
Officials announce 20-year river revitalization plan
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Providence officials have revealed a 20-year plan to revitalize the area around the Woonasquatucket (Woo-NAH'-squaw-tuck-ett) River.
The Providence Journal reports the plan revealed Wednesday includes beautifying the riverfront, adding a bicycle path and kayak launches.
Providence expects $9.1 million surplus for fiscal year
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza says the city is projected to end the 2018 fiscal year with a $9.1 million operating surplus.
WPRI-TV reports the mayor announced Thursday the surplus is due to a mix of budgeting, improved tax collections, lower salary spending and reduced operational expenses.
Bus company won’t accept city’s $600K offer following strike
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — A private bus company contracted by the city of Providence to take students to school says it won't accept $600,000 the city offered for the time its bus drivers went on strike.
First Student spokesman Frank McMahon said in a statement the company was appreciative of the city's offer but that it "decided not to seek the financial support."
Mayor Jorge Elorza had offered to pay First Student $300,000 per year for the next two years.
ACLU: Protests outside sex offender’s home violate the law
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The American Civil Liberties Union says protests outside a convicted child rapist's Providence home violate a city ordinance.
Steven Brown, the executive director of the ACLU Rhode Island, said in a letter to Mayor Jorge Elorza that loud protests outside of Richard Gardner's home "violate a city ordinance that bans targeted residential picketing." Brown also criticized Elorza for encouraging the "raucous protests."
Liquefied natural gas plant in Providence gets federal OK
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Federal regulators have approved construction of a $180 million liquefied natural gas facility on the Providence waterfront.
The Providence Journal reports the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission issued the decision late Wednesday.
Providence to pay $600K after school bus strike
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Providence has agreed to still pay a private bus company $600,000 for the time its bus drivers went on strike and disrupted travel for thousands of students.
WPRI-TV reports a spokeswoman for Mayor Jorge Elorza said Monday the city will pay First Student, Inc. $300,000 per year for the next two years.
Strike over, Providence school bus drivers head back to work
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The school bus strike that disrupted travel for thousands of schoolchildren in Providence has officially ended.
School bus drivers will return to work on Monday after voting to approve a new contract Saturday that resolved the 11-day walkout. A tentative deal had been announced on Friday.
The strike began Sept. 27 and affected more than 9,000 schoolchildren. The dispute centered on retirement benefits.
Mayor: Deal reached to end Providence school bus strike
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — A school bus company and its striking drivers' union on Friday reached a tentative deal to end the strike that has lasted more than two weeks, Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza announced Friday evening.
Elorza said details of the agreement between bus company First Student and the Teamsters Local 251 were still being finalized and that members of the union must ratify it.
The Latest: Deal reached to end Providence school bus strike
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The Latest on the school bus strike in Providence (all times local):
Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza says a tentative deal has been reached to end a school bus strike that has lasted more than two weeks.
Elorza says bus company First Student and the Teamsters union that represents drivers say they reached a tentative agreement Friday.
He says the details of the agreement are still being finalized, and that members of the Teamsters Local 251 must ratify it.
Student attendance drops as bus driver strike continues
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Attendance has dropped at Providence schools as a city-wide bus driver strike heads into its sixth day.
WPRI-TV reports that the overall attendance rate for the district was 88.9 percent Tuesday, down from 92.2 percent the day before the bus driver strike began on Sept. 27.