Fiscal 2019 budget

Ian Donnis / RIPR

On a 66 to 7 vote, the Rhode Island House of Representatives passed a $9.55 billion budget for the fiscal year that begins July 1 and that spells out for the first time how the state will divide revenue from the introduction of sports betting at two locations.

The Rhode Island House budget vote is monkeying with our column-writing schedule, so this week's TGIF is a bit abbreviated. But we're still checking the pulse of Ocean State politics and appreciate your stopping by. Your tips and comments are welcome, and you can follow me through the week on the twitters. Here we go.

Ian Donnis / RIPR

Rhode Island state Sen. Louis DiPalma (D-Middletown) joins Political Roundtable to discuss fallout from recent issues at the state Executive Office of Health and Human Services, the House version of the state budget, and the intensifying race for governor.

Ian Donnis / RIPR

An advocate for nursing homes is warning of dire effects from the budget passed late Friday by the House Finance Committee.

Virginia Burke, president of the Rhode Island Health Care Association, said the budget includes an 8.5 percent cut for nursing homes, the equivalent of about $30 million.

"To take 8.5 percent away from their revenues, that's going to be devastating," Burke told RIPR. "There will be places that have to close. The places that can keep their doors open will have massive layoffs, they won't be able to pay their vendors."

Ian Donnis / RIPR

After little discussion during a 40-minute hearing, the House Finance Committee approved Friday a $9.55 billion budget for the fiscal year beginning July 1 that restores money for human service programs, kills a proposed 25 cent per pack hike in the cigarette tax and gives voters the chance in November to direct $250 million to school construction.

Just when you think the PawSox stadium might be down for the count this legislative session, a new proposal emerges on the scene. 

Ian Donnis / RIPR

In a decision released Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court has given the okay for states to legalize sports betting -- a move that Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo expects to add $23.5 million in new revenue for the budget year starting July 1.

The May Revenue Estimating Conference is in the books, signaling the beginning of the end of the legislative session, and all the excitement that comes with that. So thanks for stopping by for my weekly column. As usual, your tips and comments are welcome, and you can follow me through the week on the twitters. Here we go.

Ian Donnis

Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo is defending her proposal to add sports betting as a new source of state revenue, pending a decision at the U.S. Supreme Court. 

It was a busy week in Rhode Island politics, so let's take some time to look back and ahead. Thanks for stopping by for my weekly column. As usual, your tips and comments are welcome, and you can follow me through the week on the twitters. Here we go.

Elisabeth Harrison

The single largest piece of the state budget – roughly $1.4 billion from general revenue – goes to education. 

Ian Donnis / RIPR

A $9.37 billion budget unveiled Thursday by Gov. Gina Raimondo closes a $260 million deficit for the current and next fiscal year

Next week looms as a big table-setter for Rhody politics in 2018, with lots of storylines to follow. So thanks for stopping by. As usual your tips and comments are welcome and you can follow me through the week on the twitters. Here we go.

Ian Donnis

Rhode Island House Majority Leader Joseph Shekarchi (D-Warwick) joins Political Roundtable to discuss the outlook in the House for the PawSox stadium proposal, and how the state might find the money to close its latest budget deficits.

It's starting to actually feel like fall, and the news keeps coming fast and furious. So thanks for stopping by for my weekly column. As usual, your tips and comments are welcome, and you can follow me through the week on the twitters. Here we go.

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