WSAR NEWS Archives for 2022-03

A New TikTok Trend has FRPD on Standby

A new TikTok trend is tempting kids into a dangerous and illegal activity. According to NBC 10 in Providence, Fall River Police said they are investigating three incidents in which Orbeez pellets were shot, once at a person and twice at vehicles. Some videos of the millions of videos under the "Orbeez Challenge" hashtag are harmless, showing how the little beads expand in water, but others suggest freezing the water gel pellets, shooting them from air-powered pellet guns, and posting the results online.


Elizabeth Buck, a UMass Dartmouth professor who researches social media said posting challenge videos can help social media users increase their views and that it's why it's important for families to have conversations about the content kids are consuming online.


Fall River police said they are continuing to investigate the incidents. No arrests have been made.

Norton Man Busted with Drugs in Somerset

According to CBS 12 in Providence, police arrested a Norton man Sunday after discovering he had 400 bags of heroin and "a quantity of crack cocaine" on him. The 63 year old male, William Bruce, was at the Riverview Inn and Suites in Somerset when he was taken into custody in the hotel's parking lot. Police said Bruce was wanted on three outstanding arrest warrants.


While taking Bruce into custody, police discovered he had 400 pre-packaged bags of heroin and 40 grams of suspected crack cocaine in his possession Bruce is charged with trafficking a Class B substance and possession with intent to distribute a Class A substance.

The JCII Brief to the First Circuit

 In a 211 page brief to the First Circuit Court of Appeals in Boston on Wednesday, the Defense Team for Convicted Former Fall RIver Mayor Jasiel Correia makes the arguement that the Sno Owl and Marijuaua cases were flawed from the outset. 


Boston based Defense Attorneys William Fixx and Daniel Marx maintain that the everidence in the Marijuaua portion of the case failed to establish that Correia conspired with others, directly solicited bribes or engaged in fraud. 


The defense futher argued that what they terms as extensive and irrelevent evidence in the 10 vacated counts ''likely tainted the jury's verdicts on the 11 remaining counts, which included testimony from ''admitted criminals with powerful incentives'' to lie on the wittness stand. 


Attorneys Marx and Fixx futher argue that the District Court erred in both form and substance of tis jury instructions, and that closing arguements delivered by the prosecution were improper. 


ABC On Chris Rock in Boston

Chris Rock broke his silence about what happened between him and Will Smith at the Oscars.

During a show in Boston at the Wilbur Theater, the comedian briefly addressed the incident and asked the audience, "How was your weekend?"

"I don't have a bunch of s--- about what happened," he said Wednesday night. "I had like a whole show I wrote before this weekend. I'm kinda processing what happened. So at some point, I'll talk about that s---."

Rock was presenting the award for best documentary at the Oscars when Smith went on stage and slapped Rock after the comedian made a joke about Jada Pinkett Smith's hair. Back at his seat, Smith shouted, "Keep my wife's name out of your f------ mouth," twice.

Smith has since apologized to the Academy for his actions, but the Academy on Wednesday announced it would be taking disciplinary action against Smith "for violations of the Academy's Standards of Conduct, including inappropriate physical contact, abusive or threatening behavior, and compromising the integrity of the Academy."

Ahead of Rock's show on Wednesday, many lined up outside the theater to see his set. An attendant at the theater told ABC News that he has never seen the theater packed before in his entire life.

The theater also had strict rules and didn't allow attendees to use their phones or take notes.

Just as the show was about to begin, the crowd erupted into applause as the lights dimmed and Rock stepped out on stage. The crowd continued to cheer for the comedian, who appeared emotional, saying, "Y'all getting me all misty-eyed."

More applause from the audience followed and some in the crowd followed with anti-Will Smith chants. Rock didn't join, but his smile grew a little wider.

Things became heated when an altercation occurred between a man who heckled at Rock on stage. Rock stopped the show to address the man, and his security guard also appeared on stage. After the heckler was escorted out, the Boston police department said he was "charged with assault and battery on a police officer and assault and battery under domestic violence statute."

ABC News' Anastasia Williams and Alondra Valle contributed to this report.

New Bedford Homicide Investigation

A 33-year-old New Bedford woman has been arraigned on murder and assault and battery counts  in New Bedford District Court on charges connected to the death Monday of a 62-year-old man on North Sixth Street, Bristol County District Attorney Thomas M. Quinn III announced.

Chelsea Pimentel was arrested Tuesday evening by Massachusetts State Police detectives assigned to this office and New Bedford Police.  She was charged with Murder, Assault & Battery Household Member, and Assault & Battery.  The defendant was held in jail overnight and will be arraigned by Assistant District Attorney Michael Scott sometime later this morning or afternoon.

On Monday at around 1 pm, the Fairhaven Police Department contacted New Bedford Police requesting a wellness check at 39 North Sixth Street following a report the parents of the defendant made to Fairhaven Police. The defendant had apparently contacted her mother Monday morning to say a man had died in her presence at that address.

When police arrived on scene, they located the deceased male victim, identified as Kevin Stoughton.  The victim resided at the apartment and the defendant had apparently been staying there with him for a time. The defendant was questioned by police on Monday, but was allowed to go to a hotel for the night while the investigation continued.

After further investigation by state police detectives assigned to this office, New Bedford Police and officials from the state medical examiner's office, it was determined late yesterday that the victim had died as a result of homicide. At that point, the defendant was formally arrested and charged. 


MassDOT and Route 24

MassDOT Advisory: Fall River

Overnight Bridge Maintenance Operations on Wilson Road Bridge over Route 24 

Work will begin Sunday, April 3, and will continue weekly, Sunday through Thursday, during overnight hours from 7 p.m. to 5 a.m.

FALL RIVER - The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) is announcing it will be conducting overnight bridge maintenance operations on the Wilson Road Bridge located over Route 24 in Fall River. The work will begin Sunday, April 3, and will continue weekly, Sunday through Thursday, during overnight hours from 7:00 p.m. to 5:00 a.m. the following morning. The work is expected to be completed by January 2024.

The work will include structural repairs, bridge deck and joint repairs, bridge deck paving, and bridge structure painting operations.  

Standard traffic control management operations will be utilized including the use police details for various lane and shoulder closures on Route 24 northbound and southbound. A minimum of one open travel lane will be maintained at all times. 

Turkeys in RI



PROVIDENCE -- The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (DEM) announces that spring wild turkey hunting permits go on sale Friday, April 1, for the youth, paraplegic, and public season. The 2022 seven-day youth turkey hunting season (ages 12-15) is open from April 18 through April 24. Participating youth must have either a junior hunting license (ages 12-14) or a resident hunting license (age 15) and a spring turkey permit. Junior hunters must be in the immediate company of an adult (21 or older) who holds a valid RI hunting license.


The 2022 two day paraplegic hunter turkey season runs April 23-24. Hunters must have a spring turkey permit and a permanent disability hunting license. 


The 2022 spring turkey season for the public opens April 28 runs through May 22. Hunters must have a spring turkey permit and a valid RI hunting license. The season bag limit is two bearded turkeys, no more than one of which can be harvested on state-owned land (all lands turkey permit). Legal shooting hours are 30 minutes before sunrise to 1 PM. All harvested turkeys must be registered with DEM’S Division of Fish and Wildlife (DFW) within 24 hours of harvest. Wild turkey licenses can be purchased online on the new Rhode Island Outdoors (RIO) website.  


Wild turkeys went extinct in Rhode Island during the early 1800s due to land-use changes, forest clearing, and overharvesting. In the 1980s, DEM and the National Wild Turkey Federation began a wildlife restoration program by translocating 29 turkeys from Vermont to Exeter, RI.


The restoration effort was successful and wild turkeys recolonized the vast majority of Rhode Island by the late 1990s. DEM’s DFW conducts annual surveys to monitor the resident wild turkey population and has implemented a sustainable wild turkey hunting season since 1985. Wild turkey populations in Rhode Island are stable and provide recreation wildlife viewing opportunities. 

DEM works to protect and enhance wildlife habitat in Rhode Island forests and management areas to ensure healthier, more diverse, and abundant wildlife populations. Hunting has a long tradition in Rhode Island, supporting family customs, connecting people with nature, and attracting tourism to the state. Hunters help provide funding for wildlife conservation through their purchase of firearms and ammunition through the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service’s Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration program and generate more matching federal funds ($3 federal match for every $1 state contributed) through the purchase of their state hunting licenses and permits.


Hunter education is offered as part of the DEM Division of Fish & Wildlife's Hunter Education Program. Safety training is required by law in Rhode Island for beginning hunters. To date, more than 40,000 people have completed a hunter safety course in Rhode Island, helping to reduce related accidents in the state and elsewhere. 


For more information about DEM divisions and programs, visit or follow us on Facebook, Twitter (@RhodeIslandDEM), or Instagram (@rhodeisland.dem) for timely updates. 


UMass For One Year

UMass receives $330,000 grant from the Richard and Susan Smith Family Foundation to expand early college in Massachusetts 

Proposed Commonwealth Collegiate Academy would offer high school students a free one-year head start on earning a college degree

The University of Massachusetts has received a $330,000 grant from the Richard and Susan Smith Family Foundation to support development of a pilot “early college” program that would provide high school students a free one-year head start on earning a college degree. The planning grant builds on a $70,000 feasibility study for the early college program, also funded by the Smith Family Foundation and conducted by UMass over the past year.


Named the Commonwealth Collegiate Academy (CCA) of the University of Massachusetts, the initiative aims to increase college participation among first generation, low-income, and students of color. The program will enable students to complete 30 credits – or one full year – of UMass courses while simultaneously satisfying high school graduation requirements. The CCA would expand upon the University’s current early college efforts. 


Unlike most early college programs in Massachusetts and across the country, the CCA will not be constrained by geography. Instead, curriculum will be delivered through an innovative “live” technology that connects UMass instructors to high school students in real time. The students will receive university lectures during the regular school day and will be supported by teams of high school instructors who will provide labs, discussion sections and other face-to-face academic interactions. 


The planning grant will support partnership building, training, and outreach activity with UMass campuses and partner high schools. The initiative will then seek additional grant funding under the state’s early college program to fund the instruction for 500 students in the SouthCoast and Merrimack Valley regions.  


Currently, 42 approved Massachusetts high schools partner with 22 higher education institutions to serve about 4,500 early college students. More than half of all Massachusetts early college students identify as African American/Black or Hispanic/Latinx, and many of them are the first in their families to attend college. However, more than 80 percent of Massachusetts high school students do not have access to an approved early college program, and few of those students live within reasonable travel distance to a higher education institution. 


“Keeping higher education opportunity affordable and accessible requires new and innovative strategies,” UMass President Marty Meehan said. “With the Commonwealth Collegiate Academy, we want to build on existing partnerships and build new ones to lower the barriers that are preventing too many young people from achieving their college aspirations.”


Katherine S. Newman, UMass System Chancellor for Academic Programs & Senior Vice President for Economic Development said: “The creation of the Commonwealth Collegiate Academy is consistent with the University’s mission of providing broad access to the life-changing benefits provided by a college degree. We are particularly pleased to be able to encourage many more students who will be the first in their families to attend college as well as those from low-income households.”


"We are thrilled to see the development of a virtual model that can bring Early College into new communities while simultaneously meeting the state’s high bar for quality,” Erika Giampietro, Executive Director of the Massachusetts Alliance for Early College, said. “The Commonwealth Collegiate Academy can help make meaningful progress towards our goal of serving 45,000 students with high-quality Early College and ultimately closing a quarter of the state’s college success equity gap.”


"This announcement, combined with the commitment from UMass to create this innovative model in support of the state's students, is welcome and adds an important element to the growth of Early College in Massachusetts,” Massachusetts Business Alliance for Education Executive Director Ed Lambert said. “The delivery of high-quality content in accelerated career themed pathways is something that the state's business leaders strongly support. Early College works and scaling up this evidence-based practice can only happen with this type of creativity and partnership.”


Program highlights:
•    The CCA seeks to provide high school students with the opportunity to gain college credits while in high school via synchronous online courses. 
•    The program will be offered free of charge to high school students, thereby lowering the cost of a college degree. 
•    All early college courses in this program will be UMass college courses taught by UMass instructors. 
•    Support, tutoring, and advising will be provided by partner high school staff members working in close collaboration with UMass staff members. 
•    The program would be rolled out over a four-year period, beginning as soon as fall 2022. 
•    The first phase of the pilot will include UMass Dartmouth and UMass Lowell, with UMass Amherst and UMass Boston joining the pilot later. 
•    Following an initial pilot phase, full enrollment in the CCA is projected to grow to 25,000 students statewide.



MassDOT on The Vets Bridge

MassDOT Advisory: Fall River and Somerset

Ramp Inspection Operations on Veterans Memorial Bridge over the Taunton River on Route 6

Work will take place nightly from Sunday, April 3, through Friday, April 8, during overnight hours from 9:00 p.m. to 4:30 a.m. the following morning


FALL RIVER/SOMERSET - The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) is announcing it will be performing a routine inspection of the ramp system for the Veterans Memorial Bridge located over the Taunton River between Fall River and Somerset.  The inspection work will take place nightly from Sunday, April 3, through Friday, April 8, during overnight hours from 9:00 p.m. to 4:30 a.m. the following morning.  All work is anticipated to be completed by 4:30 a.m. on Friday, April 8.  


The inspection operations will require intermittent lane and shoulder closures on Route 6 eastbound and westbound and on Route 79 northbound and southbound.  One lane of traffic will remain open on Route 6 and Route 79 and on the surrounding ramps at all times.  


Standard traffic control management operations will be utilized including the use of police details.  Drivers who are traveling through the affected areas should expect delays, reduce speed, and use caution.

All scheduled work is weather dependent and/or may be impacted due to an emergency situation.

Fabric Arts Returns

Fabric Arts Festival is back for its 3rd edition between May 12 and 14 under the title Where we meet, a challenge to new encounters and future spaces.


An invitation and an opportunity to look at Fall River as a territory of arrivals and intersections between multiple geographies, this edition finds inspiration in the diasporic aesthetics, languages and codes that shape the city of Fall River, to propose a program featuring public art, music, commensality, and encounter.
    Fabric presents artists working in music, performance, and visual arts. It seeks to promote collaboration between local cultural agents and Festival artists and aims to show, map, and build from the narratives of the city, its spaces, and traditions, to celebrate their communities and diversity.


    The program is organized around three days and navigates between three programming areas: Common Spaces, an exploration of visual arts and architecture; Dialogues, an experience of music and sounds; and A Table for many, centered on commensality and encounter.


We will look at Fabric as a “festa” (party in Portuguese), a place that welcomes multiple bodies, minds and ideas, intersecting everything we are, all the places we've been, our desires and hopes.






Over 50 Boosters in MA

Baker-Polito Administration Announces Availability of Second COVID-19 Booster Dose for Residents 50 and Older and Immunocompromised Individuals


BOSTON (March 30, 2022)— Following updated recommendations from the federal government, the Baker-Polito Administration today announced that all residents aged 50 and older or individuals who are younger with certain medical conditions may now access a second COVID-19 booster.


The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Tuesday recommended that certain immunocompromised individuals and all individuals over the age of 50 get an additional booster dose of COVID-19 vaccines. The decision follows authorization by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for a second booster dose for these groups four months after receiving a first booster of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines. Those eligible include:


•    Individuals 50 years of age and older at least 4 months after getting a first booster
•    Individuals 18 and older with certain medical conditions may get a second Moderna  booster at least 4 months after first booster
•    Individuals 12 and older with certain medical conditions may get a second Pfizer booster at least 4 months after the first booster.
Separately and in addition, per the CDC, individuals 18 and older who received a primary vaccine and booster dose of Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen COVID-19 vaccine at least 4 months ago may now receive a second booster dose using an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine.


Residents may access booster doses from more than 1,000 locations, with appointments readily available for booking across the Commonwealth. The Commonwealth has capacity to administer over 150,000 boosters weekly across the state.


“Vaccines including boosters are the most effective and widely available tool we have to prevent COVID infection, severe disease, and death,’’ said Dr. Larry Madoff, Medical Director of DPH’s Bureau of Infectious Disease and Laboratory Sciences. “It is important that everyone stay up to date on their vaccines. If residents have questions about whether they are eligible to get an additional booster dose, DPH encourages you to talk with your doctor.”


If you are eligible, here are the steps to find a convenient location for getting a second COVID-19 Booster:

•    Visit the Vaxfinder tool at for a full list of hundreds of locations to receive a booster and to book an appointment.

•    For individuals who are unable to use Vaxfinder, or have difficulty accessing the internet, the COVID-19 Vaccine Resource Line (Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., Saturday and Sunday 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.) is available for assistance by calling 2-1-1 and following the prompts. This service is available in English and Spanish and has translators available in approximately 100 additional languages.

•    Individuals with questions about the booster or their eligibility should contact their healthcare provider. 

Vaccines are widely available across the Commonwealth. Getting vaccinated remains the most important thing individuals can do to protect themselves, their families, and their community. Fully vaccinated residents should receive a COVID-19 booster shot when they are eligible to increase their protection against COVID-19 and its variants.

The COVID-19 booster is safe, effective, and free. Additional information on the COVID-19 booster, including FAQs, can be found at

Massachusetts leads the nation in vaccine administration, over 80% of the eligible population (5+) is fully vaccinated, and more than half are boosted. According to Bloomberg, the Commonwealth currently ranks 5th in the nation for percent of population with a booster dose.



MA Governor on The Road

 Today, Governor Charlie Baker and Lt. Governor Karyn Polito joined Secretary of Public Safety and Security Terrence Reidy, survivors, advocates and law enforcement officials for a roundtable discussion highlighting the importance of the Administration’s dangerousness legislation, which would provide comprehensive new protections for survivors of sexual assault, domestic violence, exploitation and other crimes.


This is the third regional roundtable since the legislation was refiled in December 2021. Other participants included representatives from Community VOICES, advocates from the Worcester County District Attorney’s Office of Victim Witness Services and other survivors who attended in support of the legislation. 


Today’s roundtable is part of the Administration’s continued efforts to work with the survivor community to demonstrate the importance of its public safety proposals and deliver commonsense protections for survivors of violent crime.


Similar roundtables were held in Plymouth in December 2021 and Springfield in March 2022, and Lt. Governor Karyn Polito testified on the legislative package in January before the Joint Committee on the Judiciary alongside survivors. The Administration continues to focus on the importance of survivors’ stories to demonstrate the human impact of the current gaps in the system, and the legislation has also been endorsed by the Massachusetts Office of Victims’ Assistance (MOVA).


Massachusetts Approved to Provide Families Additional P-EBT for School Year 2021-2022
Program continues critical food security supports for households with K-12 children 

BOSTON – Today, the Baker-Polito Administration announced that Massachusetts received federal approval to provide Pandemic EBT (P-EBT) benefits to school-age children and their families through school year 2021-2022. The P-EBT benefits will support students who were unable to attend school due to COVID-related absences.


The Department of Transitional Assistance (DTA) estimates this will provide $22 million in federal financial assistance for the families of more than 475,000 school-age children to buy healthy, local and culturally appropriate food as Massachusetts continues to recover from the economic impacts of the pandemic.


“The Baker-Polito Administration has pursued all available tools and resources to support individuals and families impacted by the economic fallout from the pandemic. Thanks to close coordination at the state and local level, this P-EBT plan approval for school year 2021-2022 adds another critical tool to the Commonwealth’s effort to leverage federal funds, promote food security, and provide additional food assistance to students and their families,” said Secretary of Health and Human Services Marylou Sudders.  


P-EBT is a federal program, jointly administered by DTA and the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) and in collaboration with local school districts. The program promotes increased food security for families whose children receive free or reduced-price school meals through the United States Department of Agriculture’s National School Lunch Program (NSLP).


The program covers the cost of school meals for students who miss school days because of COVID-19 and were unable to receive free or reduced-priced school meals. 


“P-EBT has proven to be an effective tool during the COVID-19 pandemic to help families and their students directly purchase healthy, culturally appropriate food.


The program also brings critical resources into our local communities, supporting food retailers and their employees,” said Department of Transitional Assistance Acting Commissioner Mary Sheehan. “We are thankful for our partnership with DESE and local school districts that enables the state to provide these critical nutrition benefits to hundreds of thousands of students and their families.”


“When students miss school, many of them also miss services such as free or reduced-price meals,” Elementary and Secondary Education Commissioner Jeffrey C. Riley said. “We’re pleased to continue our collaboration with DTA to offer P-EBT benefits that help families access healthy food.” 


For school year 2021-2022, P-EBT benefit amounts will be determined by the number of eligible COVID-related excused absences a student has in a month. Eligible Massachusetts’ families will receive a retroactive P-EBT payment for September 2021 through April 2022 COVID-related absences on May 25, 2022. The two remaining monthly payments for the school year (May and June) will be made on the 25th of each month.   


Eligible families will receive one of three P-EBT amounts per month, per student depending on the number of COVID-19 related eligible excused school absences, as determined by school districts:

•    1-5 absences: $21 a month per student
•    6-15 absences: $71 a month per student
•    16+ absences: $128 a month per student


Families will continue to receive P-EBT on the same card they did in the past. Households who lost their P-EBT card can request a replacement card. Newly eligible students will receive their P-EBT benefits on their EBT card if receiving DTA benefits or will be mailed a P-EBT card if they do not receive DTA benefits. 

Massachusetts initially launched its P-EBT program in April 2020 when schools closed due to COVID-19, was one of a limited number of  states to receive federal approval for September P-EBT benefits and was the first state in the nation to receive approval to continue P-EBT through school year 2020-2021. In March 2021, the 2020-2021 program was extended to provide P-EBT benefits for children in child care. Information on P-EBT for children in child care for school year 2021-2022 will be shared in the future.

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act established the option for states to establish program P-EBT and the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 allows states to continue providing P-EBT for families into school year 2021-2022.

P-EBT benefits can be used anywhere Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits are accepted, including online from select retailers. More information on P-EBT can be found at and


Fall River Missing Person

Salena Atfield was located Wednesday afternoon, after being declared a missing and endangered person. 

She was located by a pair of Fall River Major Crime Detectives and was found to be in good health. 

Parking Fees in CT State Parks

DEEP Resumes Non-Resident Fee Collection at Certain State Parks 
Remote Non-Resident Parking Fee Collection Resumes on April 1 at Some State Parks 
(HARTFORD)—The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP), is resuming its remote non-resident parking fee system at some state parks beginning Friday, April 1st, and will resume in-person non-resident parking fee collection at several state parks beginning Memorial Day Weekend.  
The remote non-resident parking fee system, piloted at a small number of state parks last year, requires visitors with out-of-state registered vehicles to purchase a parking pass remotely through Reserve America, our vendor, using a smart-phone and a credit card. This system will be implemented at our shoreline state parks (Harkness Memorial, Hammonasset Beach, Rocky Neck, Silver Sands and Sherwood Island State Parks) and several of our inland state parks.  
Signage is being added at those parks so that visitors are aware of the obligation, and to provide directions on how to purchase a parking pass.? DEEP will continue to educate out-of-state visitors about the operation of this system, and failure to pay the required fee can result in the issuance of a $75 infraction fine.? Visitors with out-of-state vehicles that are frequent visitors might also consider purchasing a parking season pass, which permits unlimited parking at any state park for the entire season. The cost of the season pass is $112.00.  
Anyone in a?Connecticut-registered vehicle?can still?park free of charge?at?all CT State Parks and Forests?year-round through the?Passport to the Parks program.  
For more information about out-of-state parking fee collection for 2022, including locations and parking fee amounts, go here.  

RI Lawmakers Review Gun Laws

To CBS 12 in Providence, today and tomorrow, Rhode Island lawmakers are taking on a number of gun-related bills. One of several bills in the spotlight before the House Judiciary Committee today would give store owners the authority to use deadly force to protect themselves and their establishments in the event of a crime while a second bill would make it so a person is presumed to be in danger to the community if they are arrested with possessing a firearm that's had its identification marks altered, also referred to as a ghost gun.


Other bills on today's agenda include one that would raise the legal gun-buying age from 18 to 21 and another would stop a person from purchasing ammunition unless they've passed a background check. Lawmakers will hear testimony about the bills at the state house starting at 1 p.m.

Providence Rapper ACLU Lawsuit


Is a New York Times article a confidential document that the City of Providence can withhold from disclosure under the Access to Public Records Act (APRA) on the grounds that it would violate copyright law to release it? That is one of the issues – along with free speech concerns raised by the City’s denial of an entertainment permit to a national rap artist – raised by an open records lawsuit filed by the ACLU of Rhode Island today after the City refused to turn over any documents underlying its decision last year to bar a rapper from performing at a Providence club. 

            Last October, the Providence Police Department (PPD) requested that the Providence Board of Licenses issue a “cease and desist” order to the “LIT Lounge” to prohibit a performance by the rap artist Jeffrey Alexander (known professionally as “22Gz”) scheduled to take place a few days later. Among other things, the PPD representative told the Board that 22Gz was a member of a gang that “has ties to the Crip Gang,” and that two years earlier, New York police asked an event organizer to remove 22Gz and four other performers from an event because “if they were allowed to perform, there would be a higher risk of violence.” 

The Board voted to issue the order requested by the PPD, advising the club that “the Providence Police Department presented numerous incidents of violence at previous performances of this artist. The Board determined that allowing this artist to perform would pose a significant safety threat to your establishment, your staff, your patrons, and the City as a whole.”

            Concerned about the possible First Amendment implications of the Board’s actions in banning a rap artist from performing, ACLU of Rhode Island policy associate Hannah Stern filed an APRA request with the City, seeking “any documents provided to the Board of Licenses” regarding incidents of violence at previous 22Gz performances, and “any documents which delineate the specific incidents of violence referenced in the Providence Police Department presentation leading to the denial of this event for the applicant.” The City initially responded by simply providing the ACLU with a link to the City’s Open Meetings Portal for documents filed with the Board of Licenses relating to “LIT Lounge,” and failed to provide any other documents or records, including those detailing “incidents of violence at previous 22Gz performances.”

When the ACLU demanded a further response for those records, the City responded that all relevant documents – including an article from the New York Times – were being withheld on the grounds that they were “required to be kept confidential by federal law or regulation or state law, or rule of court.” As for the NYT article, the City alleged that “copyright law” prevented it from “re-publishing” it in response to the APRA request. The lawsuit, filed by ACLU of Rhode Island cooperating attorney Jeff Levy, claims there is no basis under copyright law for the City’s secretive position in sharing the article. The APRA suit further argues:
“There is significant public interest in the requested records. The City’s decision to prevent 22Gz from performing at Lit Lounge constitutes a prior restraint on speech, which may have been unconstitutional. To the extent that the City maintains that the prior restraint was warranted because of legitimate concerns about public safety, the public is entitled to see the documents and records underpinning that decision.”

The lawsuit asks the court to issue an order requiring the release of all the relevant documents the City has, and that the records be provided at no charge. The suit also seeks imposition of a fine against the City for violating APRA, and an award of attorneys’ fees. 

The ACLU’s Stern said today: “Rather than providing documents which could give important context to the order issued by the Board of Licenses, the City has instead chosen to inappropriately conceal the information which led to this decision. The reasoning behind the decisions made by public entities should not be kept secret, nor should the City feel empowered to use irrelevant statutes to hinder and stymie public access to such records.”

ACLU of RI cooperating attorney Levy added: “A rap artist’s songs are a form of speech protected by the First Amendment. If the City prohibits an artist from performing because of a concern about potential violence, it should be prepared to disclose any documents that informed or justified that decision. The City’s decision to withhold information in this case is troubling, as it has implications for both open government and the right to free speech.”

Additional information about the lawsuit can be found here.  

Testing for UMass Law

UMass Law to accept GRE test results for law school admission

GRE option to make law school admission more accessible and reduce barriers to the legal profession

Applicants to UMass Law can now choose to submit either the results of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or the results of the Law School Admission Test (LSAT) with their law school application.

In a November 2021 decision, the Council for the Section of Legal Education of the American Bar Association voted to permit law schools to accept GRE test scores from applicants in lieu of an LSAT score. The decision follows a successful six-year review by the Educational Testing Service (ETS) on the use of the GRE for law school admission.

“Expanding access to justice is at the core of our identity as a public law school,” said UMass Law Dean Eric Mitnick. “Part of expanding access to justice is increasing access to legal education, so it is heartening to know that students will have multiple pathways to law school admission.” 
The GRE is generally considered a more convenient and more widely available testing option, offering the ability to take the exam at any time of the year, either on a computer at home or in more than 1,000 test centers across more than 160 countries.

Since the GRE is the primary graduate school admissions test across the largest variety of academic disciplines, it is also viewed as a more flexible alternative, with the potential to enable law school applicants from a wider diversity of programs and with a broader range of career opportunities, including applicants from STEM fields or those with an interest in dual degree graduate programs. UMass Law offers three such joint graduate degree programs, including JD/MBA, JD/MPP, and JD/MSW degrees.

For applicants who take both the LSAT and GRE, the LSAT will remain the primary admissions test and the principal score used in the admission decision.

Applicants can obtain more information about applying to UMass Law using the GRE here.

UMass Law is committed to providing an excellent, affordable, and accessible legal education that prepares future lawyers to Pursue Justice™ in the Commonwealth and beyond.

ARPA $s in New Bedford

Mayor Mitchell Announces First ARPA Investments 
Relief Funding Begins with Major Expansion of Storefront Program

New Bedford, Massachusetts – Mayor Jon Mitchell, elected and city officials, and neighborhood and business leaders gathered Tuesday to announce the City’s first investment of ARPA funding, in a program that offers grants up to $40,000 for small businesses to upgrade their storefronts. 
The Enhanced Façade Improvement Program is designed to revitalize commercial neighborhoods, stimulate private investment and customer patronage, and preserve and beautify New Bedford’s commercial districts, from the International Marketplace of the near North End to downtown and the near South End. 
The program enables eligible commercial property owners, tenants, and nonprofit organizations to receive a grant of up to $40,000 for eligible commercial façade improvements. Applicants are required to provide a 25% match of the total award. Eligible improvements include replacement or restoration of original architectural details; signs and awnings mounted to the building façade; new storefront construction within an existing building; window replacement and window framing; painting and/or residing of buildings; exterior lighting, and more.
The City has budgeted up to $1.5 million in ARPA funding for the program. It will exponentially expand previous storefront improvement programs, which have been funded by community block development grants and had a maximum award of $2,000. Prior programs also had no eligibility for nonprofits. Businesses across the city are eligible to apply for the enhanced program, provided they are in industries disproportionately affected by the pandemic. 
Today’s event is the City’s first announcement of investment under the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), designed to address economic and public health impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic. The event follows City Council’s vote Thursday night to accept the City’s direct allotment of about $64.7 million in ARPA funds. 
“ARPA funds offer our City the opportunity to emerge from the pandemic stronger than when it began. By putting money in the hands of our small businesses, we seek to accelerate their growth and the well-being of the neighborhoods in which they operate,” Mayor Jon Mitchell said. “When small businesses succeed, a city thrives.” 
“The Enhanced Façade Improvement Program creates a grant incentive to encourage property and business owners to improve their building storefronts,” said Patrick Sullivan, director of the City’s Office of Housing and Community Development. “This investment of grant funding will go a long way to help revitalize neighborhoods, support local businesses, and improve visibility and curb appeal.”
“Initiatives like the City’s Enhanced Façade Improvement Program are directly within the wheelhouse of what was intended when President Biden signed the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 into law last spring,” City Council President Ian Abreu said. “Through this program, our community will experience an incredible transformation in many of our business districts that were negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. I can’t wait to see this initiative come to fruition.” 
Businesses, commercial property owners, nonprofit organizations and other eligible entities can download a program application on the City’s ARPA website:

Fall River Earth Day Cleanups

Fall River Announces Earth Day Clean-Ups

(FALL RIVER, MA- March 29, 2022)- The Office of Mayor Paul Coogan has announced a
pair of volunteer clean-ups to celebrate Earth Day. Residents are invited to join at these
locations, where the Department of Community Maintenance will be providing tools to all

On Friday, April 22nd, the City will be leading a clean-up of downtown alongside local
organization Viva Fall River and the downtown business community. The clean-up will begin at
1pm from City Hall plaza and is expected to end around 3pm.

On Saturday, April 23rd from 10am-12pm, a park clean-up will take place at Chew Park,
covering neighboring Father Kelly Park and the Globe Four Corners. The meet-up location will
be beside the Globe/Kosior Fire Station (659 Globe St).

For more details, residents can contact the Mayor’s Office at 508-324-2600 or email Residents can also sign-up for email notifications about future cleanup opportunities at

Fall River Police and Fire Gtants

The City of Fall River has secured $1.2 million in Massachusetts Municipal Public Safety Staffing Grants to help Communities maintain local public safety and Emergency Response Services. 


The Fall River Police Department secured a little over half a million dollars while the Fire Department will revieve over $759,000. 


The Commonwealth Dollars can be used for recruitment, retention and shift coverage. 


Fall RIver was one of 10 eligible municipalities faving police and fire department staffing shortfalls. 








$ 509,300.00      $ 759,435.67     

Swansea Campsite Sold for $1 Million

According to the digital edition of the Fall River Herald, a former Girl Scout 100 acre campground in Swansea was sold for just over $1 million. Estate and mortgage data company, The Warren Group, explained the 172-acre camp promise property off Dillon Lane sold on March 10. Girl Scouts of Southern New England sold the property to a corporation called Frida LLC. The Girls Scouts' camp promise closed at the end of the 2020 camping season with the site having been on the market since January 2021.


The property includes multiple outbuildings, sheds and platforms, a 1,500 square-foot residential house, a 1,600 square-foot bunkhouse, and a pool house.

Fall River Police Arrest Armed Biker

According to CBS 12 in Providence, a Fall River man was arrested last week on weapons and drug charges after he was pulled over in Tiverton. Police said 23 year old Eric Spencer was taken into custody by an officer who noticed he was riding his motorcycle erratically on Main Road Friday evening. The officer also learned, through database inquiry, that Spencer's motorcycle wasn't registered and while speaking with Spencer, the officer noticed he had various weapons on him. Those weapons included an expandable baton, a loaded revolver and ammunition strip, a fixed blade knife and metal knuckles. Police said Spencer also had a bag of suspected cocaine in one of his pockets and was wearing a ballistic vest under his clothes. 


Spencer was not licensed to operate a motorcycle and did not have a permit to carry a concealed firearm and was charged with carrying a concealed pistol without a license, possession of a controlled substance and possession of weapons other than firearms. Spencer was arraigned and released after posting $5,000 surety bail.

Man Found Dead in Taunton River

According to CBS 12 in Providence, A death investigation in Fall River is not considered suspicious, according to the Bristol County District Attorney’s Office, who confirmed the person died by suicide. The city's police and fire responded to the Taunton River near Battleship Cove on Sunday afternoon where they recovered the body of a deceased male floating in the water. 


Fall River Police Major Crimes Division and detectives alongside Massachusetts State Police and the Bristol County District Attorney’s Office are handling the investigation.

This Week in Rhode Island's General Assembly

Assembly OKs temporary lift on cap of days worked by retired teachers 

The General Assembly passed legislation sponsored by Rep. Gregg Amore (D-Dist. 65, East Providence) and Sen. Stephen R. Archambault (D-Dist. 22, Smithfield, North Providence, Johnston) to temporarily suspend the cap on the number of days retired educators can work without penalty due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Currently allowable under an executive order set to expire March 31, the practice will be extended through the end of the school year by the legislation (2022-H 7825, 2022-S 2560). The bill also provides greater flexibility in school transportation and allows registered nurse graduates to work pending licensure to ease the nurse shortage while the state still combats COVID-19 and its impacts.

?    Euer, Handy bill, backed by McKee, seeks additional 600 MW of offshore wind
Senate Environment and Agriculture Committee Chairwoman Dawn Euer (D-Dist. 13, Newport, Jamestown) and Rep. Arthur Handy (D-Dist. 18, Cranston) joined Gov. Dan McKee and state and local officials to announce the introduction of their legislation (2022-S 2583, 2022-H 7971) to require a market-competitive procurement for approximately 600 megawatts of newly-developed offshore wind capacity. If enacted, Rhode Island’s primary utility company would be required to issue a request for proposals by Aug. 15.

?    House passes bill for custody procedures for pets in divorce cases
The House passed legislation sponsored by Deputy Speaker Charlene M. Lima (D-Dist. 14, Cranston, Providence) on pet custody in divorce proceedings. The legislation (2022-H 7087) directs the courts to consider factors such as who owned the animal first or whether it was acquired following marriage, who tended to the animal’s needs, which living arrangement is best for the animal and whether children were involved in its care.

A Moratorium on Marijuana in Fall River

The City of Fall River has decided to extend the
moratorium on acceptance of applications for adult-use marijuana establishments.


 The City
requires additional time to enact a comprehensive cannabis zoning ordinance intended to
mitigate potential impacts to surrounding neighborhoods and to protect the public health, safety,
and general welfare of the community at large.


The City expects to accept new applications once
the cannabis zoning ordinance is enacted.


To date, Fall River has entered into Host Community Agreements (HCAs) with thirteen
cannabis entities, allowing for the cultivation, manufacture, and/or sale of marijuana at fifteen
different city locations. Three of these companies (Northeast Alternatives, Sunnyside, and
Nature’s Medicine) are currently open for business, while another three cannabis businesses are
expected to open in the near future.


 Additional cannabis businesses are expected to open their
doors once they receive state approval from the Cannabis Control Commission.
There is no cannabis zoning ordinance currently in place in Fall River, which has raised
concern from residents located in close proximity to existing cannabis businesses


. In order to
minimize future negative impacts to our residents and businesses, it has been decided that the
most prudent course of action is to hold-off on the issuance of additional HCAs until cannabisspecific zoning is enacted and the effects of the new influx of cannabis businesses are better

Drug Bust in Rehoboth

According to CBS 12 in Providence, police are investigating after finding a large quantity of suspected cocaine at a Rehoboth home. Rrehoboth Police said they were tipped off about packages of cocaine being shipped to the Cedar Street address from Puerto Rico. On Thursday, detectives seized packages containing nearly two kilograms of suspected cocaine, which has an estimated street value of more than $70,000 dollars.


A potential suspect from Providence has been identified, but no arrests have been announced so far. Massachusetts State Police, the Bristol County District Attorney's Office, and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) assisted with the investigation.

F-R P-D Arrest

On Tuesday, March 22, 2022, Fall River Police Department Major Crimes Division Detectives were able to
place Michael Hazel (33 years of age) under arrest after an extensive investigation in to burglaries and car
breaks taking place in the North End neighborhood of Fall River.

Det. Luis Vertentes was able to identify Hazel as a suspect in recent breaks in that area and developed
evidence leading to the issuance of a search warrant for Hazel’s residence. A search of the residence by
detectives provided additional evidence implicating Hazel as the burglary suspect.

Michael Hazel was placed under arrest and arraigned in Fall River District Court where he was ordered to
be held in custody pending his next court date. 

The First Checks Go Out

Massachusetts to Begin Distribution of Premium Payments to Low-Income Workers 


$500 payments to be sent to 500,000 eligible Massachusetts residents by the end of March and call center now available for constituents with eligibility questions


BOSTON – The Baker-Polito Administration today announced the start of distribution of the first round of $500 payments for low-income workers under the COVID-19 Essential Employee Premium Pay Program. The payments will be mailed to approximately 500,000 people over the next week.


These payments were previously announced last month and represent the first round of a $460 million program passed by the Massachusetts Legislature and signed by Governor Baker as part of a $4 billion spending plan for American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds. Under this program created by the Legislature, the Administration was provided flexibility to design the program and develop eligibility parameters to ensure this critical support is provided quickly to workers across the Commonwealth.


Massachusetts residents will be eligible for first round payments if, based on filed 2020 Massachusetts tax returns, their income from employment was at least $12,750 – the equivalent to working 20 hours/week for 50 weeks at minimum wage as of 2020 – and their total income put them below 300% of the federal poverty level. 


Individuals who received unemployment compensation in 2020 will not be eligible for the first round of payments, nor will Commonwealth executive branch employees who received or will receive a one-time payment from the state as their employer. Eligible individuals will receive the payment in the form of a check mailed to them. Checks will be mailed in batches in the coming days. 


Click here for more information on eligibility.

For questions about eligibility, a dedicated call center is available at (866) 750-9803 and is open Monday through Friday, 9am - 4pm. 

Click here to view answers to frequently asked questions (FAQs).

The legislation creating the Premium Pay program included $500 million in total for low-income essential workers; this $460 million program comprises the majority of those funds, and $40 million was allocated to fund previous agreements with state employee unions. This first round of payments, worth $250 million, will be made based on 2020 returns. Following the 2021 tax filing season, the next round of payments will be made using information from 2021 returns. 

Information on plans to disburse subsequent rounds of funds will be released in the future.  


Butler Is Back

This information first appeared on


According to Adam Schefter, the Patriots will reunite with one of their most notable players of the last decade, cornerback Malcolm Butler, who will reportedly sign a two-year deal worth up to $9 million. Butler was out of football in 2021, but began working out for teams last week with an eye toward returning to the NFL.

Butler made the Patriots as an undrafted rookie in 2014, standing out early and often in training camp making repeated plays on the ball. But he'd have to wait until the Super Bowl that season to make his biggest impact when he was inserted into the lineup against the Seahawks and ended up making one of the most famous interceptions in NFL history that sealed New England's fourth championship.

Butler went on to start three seasons for the Patriots, providing an aggressive, man-cover presence that helped the team win another Super Bowl in 2016. However, Butler barely saw the field in Super Bowl 52 in a loss to the Eagles and subsequently departed in free agency that offseason for the Titans, signing a five-year, $61 million deal.

He played three of those seasons, recording nine total interceptions, but was released following the 2020 season and, despite signing on with the Cardinals in early 2021, Butler retired for personal reasons and spent the season out of football.

After the departure of J.C. Jackson, the Patriots certainly have a need at cornerback, especially if Butler can still play at a high level in his usual style. The 32-year-old's return is a surprise given how his first Patriots tenure ended, but it's a return that is worth taking a shot on for New England as they look to match up with all the weapons in the AFC.

Somerset Town Election Races

According to the digital edition of the Fall River Herald, there will be a race for a Board of Selectmen seat, a Planning Board seat and two town School Committee seats in this year's annual town election on April 11. Incumbent Selectwoman Kathleen Souza will face off against Jacob Vaught for a three-year term on the board. Souza was elected last year after former Selectwoman Holly McNamara resigned before her term ended. On the Planning Board, incumbent Virgil Pacheco will face off against challenger Lloyd Mendes. For the local School Committee, both incumbents Christopher Godet and Michael Mcdonald did not file papers to extend their respective terms in office. Three residents, Christine Courville, Kimberly Ferreira and James Nasto, will square off for those two available seats.


Polls on April 11 will be open within the Somerset Berkley Regional High School student dining hall from noon to 8 P.M.

Blackstone River Issues in RI


PROVIDENCE – The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (DEM) is investigating the discharge of partly treated wastewater from the Woonsocket Regional Wastewater Treatment Facility located at 11 Cumberland Hill Road in Woonsocket. DEM was first made aware of the discharge on the afternoon of March 21. The discharge is currently ongoing.


As a precaution, DEM and the Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH) are advising residents to temporarily refrain from both primary contact recreational water activities (wading, swimming) and secondary contact activities (canoeing, kayaking, rowing, and fishing) and to avoid consuming any fish from the river from the location of the discharge, at Cumberland Hill Road in Woonsocket, to the Slater Mill Dam in Pawtucket (see map). This advisory is in effect until further notice.


The treatment plant, operated by the private contractor Jacobs, treats about 10 million gallons of sewage daily. DEM is investigating the cause of this loss of treatment and monitoring steps being taken by the city and its vendor to ensure a return to permit compliance. DEM issued letters of noncompliance to the facility in November 2021 and March 2022 regarding operations and maintenance concerns.


For more information about DEM divisions and programs, visit or follow us on Facebook, Twitter (@RhodeIslandDEM), or Instagram (@rhodeisland.dem) for timely updates.


An Auchencloss Editorial

By: Congressman Jake Auchincloss 

The United States must be the arsenal of the Ukrainian resistance

Last week I joined fellow Members of Congress to hear from President Volodymyr Zeleknskyy of Ukraine. His speech was a battle cry from the front lines of the free world. Greeted with a standing ovation, this hero implored us to do more to protect his people. Most powerful was his closing. Setting aside his interpreter, he addressed us – and President Joe Biden – in English. Lead the world, he said. Lead for peace.


How do we lead for peace? There is peace through strength: we must be the arsenal of the Ukrainian resistance. There is also peace through diplomacy. We must pressure Beijing to further isolate the Kremlin. And, noxious though it may be, we must offer an off-ramp to Russia to stop the violence.


Neither strength nor diplomacy should be partisan at this moment of crisis. Republican criticism of the president as being "dragged to lead" is a hypocritical attack. The President's statesmanship has turned the temperature down, while dialing the pressure up. Advocating a no-fly zone, furthermore, is premature and unhelpful to his efforts – and is not, in fact, popular with Americans once explained as an act of war.


The United States can punish Putin without waging another war on the Eurasian steppes. And the moral high ground is ours: Vladimir Putin caused this pain. He is responsible for the misfortunes of Russia, and any suggestions otherwise are misguided. America and its allies must continue to provide support for air defense, maritime, and ground operations. Whatever materiél and training Ukraine needs to close its skies and destroy Russian armor, artillery, and infantry, NATO should provide.


If that means airplanes and S-300s, then airplanes and S-300s we must send. But cyber and paramilitary support may be even more important. The United States can forward deploy electronic warfare (EW) units to impair Russian logistics and command-and-control (C2) nodes in Ukraine. As a former infantry officer and cybersecurity manager, the potency of these attacks resonate with me more than headline-grabbing debates about airplanes. Ground forces are taught to ‘shoot, move, and communicate’; U.S. EW units can make it maddeningly hard for Russia to move and communicate, without setting foot in Ukraine.


These attacks should be tactical and deniable. To contain the conflict, NATO should continue to refrain from cyber attacks on the Russian homeland, unless Russia should attempt to hack our infrastructure first.


Ukrainian special forces can take advantage of degraded Russian C2 to conduct raids that further degrade Russian firepower. Advised and assisted by U.S. paramilitary officers, Ukrainian special operations could become the main effort of a long resistance.


An occupation against well-trained, well-supported guerilla forces would be a nightmare for the Kremlin. Yet, it would be a nightmare for Ukraine, too. To save Ukraine from further death and destruction is the ultimate objective. To this end, the United States must double down on diplomacy.


Russia and Ukraine do not negotiate alone. Russia relies on China. Ukraine, on NATO. Publicly, NATO must amplify the threat of secondary sanctions against China for providing economic or military support to Russia. China is an order of magnitude more integrated and important in the global economy than Russia, so these secondary sanctions would cause hardship for the West. Yet we must be committed to following through. If we are credible, China is much more likely to privately deny Russia a lifeline. That would materially improve Ukraine's leverage at the negotiating table.


As China removes the lifeline, NATO and Ukraine can provide the off-ramp. This may include suzerainty for Crimea and parts of Donbas. It likely also includes neutrality for Ukraine, swearing off the 2008 Bucharest Summit Declaration and agreeing to neither host foreign forces nor engage in foreign conflicts. This non-alignment, though, must be buttressed by Western security guarantees that are not subject to a Russian veto in the U.N. Security Council, as the 1994 Budapest Memorandum is.


This is the painful path to peace. Through strength. Through diplomacy. But it does not end when the violence does. As Americans, we must be committed for the long haul, to the rebuilding of a sovereign, secure, democratic and prosperous Ukraine.


Jake Auchincloss represents the Massachusetts Fourth Congressional District in Congress where he is Vice Chairman of the House Financial Services Committee.

The Sox Build A Roster for 2022

As the Red Sox continue to make roster decisions during a shorter-than-normal Spring Training, the Digital Editions of the Boston Globe and The New York Post are reporting that MLB and the MLBPA have agreed to expand rosters from 26 to 28 until May 1st. 

Rosters would then return to 26 players, with clubs being allowed to carry up to 13 pitchers.

A Diman Veto Overturned

By a vote of 7 to 1, with Council Member Brad Kilby voting no, and with Council Vice President Michelle Dionne absent due to a personal matter, the Fall River City Council was able to override a veto of a February 22 vote on the local financing on a proposed Diman Regional High Vocational and Technical High School Building that has secured millions in funding from the MSBA.  

What the F-R Council Decided Last Night

The Fall River City Council last night confirmed the appointment and the employment contract with Bridget Almon to be the new Director of Financial Services. 

The 8 members present at last night's meeting agreed to appointments from the Administration; Paulo Amaral was appointed to a slot on the Conservation Commission, with Laura Washington approved for a seat on the Sewer Commission, while Rebecca Collins was appointed to the Watuppa Water Board. 
Water and Sewer Budgets for Fiscal Year 2023 are headed to the council's Finance Committee, while Water and Sewer rates for Fiscal Year 2023 will be debated in the Ordinance and and Legislation Committee. 

Ordinance and Legislation members will also decide on a proposal to reorganize City Departments, along with a proposed ordinance that seeks to establish a Director of City Operations. 

North Terminal Expansion in New Bedford

Port of New Bedford Awards North Terminal Expansion Project Contract

New Bedford, Massachusetts— Last week, the New Bedford Port Authority awarded a $27,943,800 construction project contract to D.W. White Construction of Acushnet, MA for the North Terminal Expansion project in the Port of New Bedford. 
The North Terminal Expansion is a transformative port infrastructure project that will spur long-term economic development by meeting the infrastructure needs of commercial fishermen, the offshore wind industry, and other port users, to ensure economic growth and increased efficiency. 

This project was a culmination of federal, state, and private investment that will build a north/south bulkhead at the North Terminal in New Bedford’s upper harbor.  The project will also spur significant investment in the Port of New Bedford in the years to come.  

Led by the New Bedford Port Authority (NBPA), this project will create a safer and more efficient connection between the New Bedford Harbor and the surface transportation system.   More specifically the project will:

•    Extend the North Terminal Bulkhead in the upper harbor;
•    Backfill the new bulkhead with approximately 97,000 cubic yards of clean suitable material sourced from CAD Cell 4. Approximately 150,000 square feet of upland terminal space will be created across the area backfilled landward of the bulkhead;
•    Complete the new CAD cell with 480,000 cubic yards capacity to receive contaminated dredge material within New Bedford Harbor. Design and permitting for this CAD cell has been previously completed.  Dredging of approximately 25,000 cubic yards of contaminated material located in front of the North Terminal; 
•    Increase infrastructure to support the offshore wind industry while also providing much needed berthing space for commercial fishing vessels. 

This project will result in significant long-term economic development, including:

•    898 new and permanent jobs; 
•    an additional $65.1 million in additional wages and local consumption; 
•    an additional $11.5 million in state and local tax revenue. 

“This project represents a major step in our effort to modernize the Port of New Bedford.  It will enhance the long-term competitiveness of our maritime industries and help create quality jobs for our residents,” Mayor Jon Mitchell said. “I am grateful for the skill and determination of the Port Authority’s team in overcoming legal, financial and engineering obstacles, along with the support of Senator Markey and the Baker Administration, that have enabled the project to proceed.  We look forward to working with DW White, a leading contractor in Greater New Bedford with a long history of responsible corporate citizenship.”
This project is one of the most significant harbor development projects in the history of the port.  The Port of New Bedford is poised to address, on an on-going basis, the issue of modernizing the port’s docking facilities, as well as updating its infrastructure ensuring that New Bedford remains the #1 commercial fishing port in the country.   

Sox Wearing Remy 2 Patches in 2022

This story appears on the Red Sox Website 

Ian Browne

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- The Red Sox will honor the late Jerry Remy by wearing commemorative patches bearing his name and number on their uniforms all season.

Remy, who received iconic status in Red Sox Nation during his 33 years in the broadcast booth, will be honored in pregame ceremonies prior to the April 20 home game against the Blue Jays.

This will be the first time since 2012, when they celebrated the 100th anniversary of Fenway Park, that the Sox will wear commemorative patches for an entire season.

The Sox wore patches during the last three months of the ’02 season to honor Ted Williams after he passed away that July.

There was an outpouring of love and support from the Red Sox and their fans when Remy passed away last October 30 at the age of 68 after a battle with lung cancer.

Red Sox booth honors Jerry Remy
Mar 17, 2022 · 0:34
Red Sox booth honors Jerry Remy
On April 6 at 8 p.m. ET, NESN will premier an hour-long special titled, “Remembering Jerry.”

The television tribute will feature stories and memories of Remy’s broadcast and playing career from his teammates, as well as current and former NESN broadcasters. Fans can also share their favorite memories of the long-time NESN analyst on a special webpage dedicated to Remy by visiting

A native of Somerset, Mass., Remy achieved the thrill of playing for his hometown Red Sox from 1978 until the end of his career in ’84.

Respected for his grit on the ballfield, Remy’s popularity was increased by his sharp wit as a broadcaster. He also broke down the nuances of the game in a way that was easy to digest.

Red Sox manager Alex Cora and several players have worn “Jerry Remy Fight Club” t-shirts this spring. The shirts came out last season following Remy’s cancer diagnosis.

Remy made his final appearance at Fenway Park at last year’s American League Wild Card Game against the Yankees when he threw out the first pitch to former teammate, Hall of Famer and current NESN analyst Dennis Eckersley.

New Bedford Homicide

New Bedford Police, Massachusetts State Police detectives assigned to the district attorney's office and Homicide Unit prosecutors are investigating a homicide, which occurred Monday night in the City of New Bedford.

New Bedford Police received a 911 call at 6:06 pm Monday regarding a male shooting victim outside of 117 Hillman Street.  When police and paramedics arrived on scene, they located the victim on the porch of that address, suffering from a single gunshot wound.

The victim, later identified as Eric Jose Carlos, 35, of New Bedford, was rushed to St. Luke's Hospital, where he was pronounced deceased shortly before 7 pm.

The homicide investigation is extremely active and no further information on the facts of the case can be publicly disseminated at this time. 

The investigation is being coordinated by Co-First Assistant District Attorney Patrick O. Bomberg.

New Bedford-Fairhaven Bridge Issues

According to CBS 12 in Providence Friday, the New Bedford-Fairhaven Bridge got stuck in the open position when a hydraulic jack failed, forcing MassDOT to shut down a heavily traveled portion of Route 6 and put detours in place. Crews spent the day working on the bridge and finally got it opened by 5 P.M. New Bedford Mayor Jon Mitchell says he's been calling for the bridge to be replaced since he took office in 2014, over the weekend, Mitchell released a statement saying he knew that day would come and tried for years to prevent it.


The bridge, according to Mitchell, was built in 1905, before the use of cars became universal, and it hasn't been properly maintained since.

N-B Port Authority Gig Available

New Bedford Port Authority 
To Undertake Executive Director Search

New Bedford, Massachusetts–The New Bedford Port Authority will begin a search for a new Executive Director, following the announced departure of current Executive Director Justin Poulsen.   

Poulsen informed the Board last week of his decision to step down, in order to attend to pressing family matters that require him to relocate from New Bedford. He will continue to serve in his position through April 15.

“This is certainly an excruciating decision, but one that prioritizes the health and well-being of my family, who have been out of the country for several months now,” Poulsen said. “It has been an immense honor to serve as steward of the Port of New Bedford, and I am genuinely grateful for the warm welcome the community has shown me in my short time here.  I want to particularly thank the Port Commissioners, Port Authority staff, partners and the City of New Bedford for their unwavering support, and Mayor Mitchell for his guidance, vision and leadership.”


Poulsen added that he’s proud of what the organization has achieved during his tenure and acknowledges the Port Authority is “poised to capture transformational opportunities,” with both “a clear roadmap and the expertise and motivation to accomplish its strategic goals.”  
Poulsen assumed the position in July 2021, having been selected from among a pool of more than 75 applicants.  

Bristol County District Attorney's Office Has a New Worker

Chief, a black Labrador Retriever, joined the District Attorney's Office from NEADS World Class Service Dogs, a nonprofit located in Princeton. According to CBS 12 in Providence, the dogs are taken to various public spaces, like crowded restaurants, elevators and open

stairways, office workspaces and on public transportation. They are also trained to be comfortable around children of all ages, as well as cats. 


Samantha Dias, a forensic interviewer with the Bristol County District Attorney's Office, is Chief's handler and she said his job will be to provide support to children during forensic interviews

Bristol County District Attorney Thomas Quinn expressed it is what the office and community needs.

Restaurant Week in Fall River

According to the digital edition of the Fall River Herald, things are heating up in kitchens across the city, as they gear up for the launch of Fall River Restaurant Week on Friday, March 25. The event, led by Viva Fall River with support from One Southcoast Chamber, will be closing out the month with a showcasing of all the flavors Fall River has to offer. According to Patti Rego, Director of Viva Fall River, this is the first Restaurant Week event in the city in almost a decade, and the first-ever organized by Viva Fall River.


With 12 eateries signed on to fall river restaurant week, there will be something for everyone's taste - from italian to mexican to portuguese to pub food and more. Participating restaurants include 110 grill, Fall River Grill, TA Restaurant, the Tipsy Toboggan, and much more.

Buy Black NB is Coming to Fall River

According to the digital edition of the Fall River Herald, following their success in 2021, Buy Black NB is holding its first pop.up vendor market of 2022 in Fall River. Buy Black NB is a New Bedford-based community resource supporting black-owned businesses across the south coast. Formed during the Black Lives Matter protests of 2020, Buy Black NB has put together a directory of more than 200 black-owned businesses in the south coast, and that number continues to grow.


They hosted nine vendor pop-ups in 2021, and now those markets are expanding, starting with Fall River. On Saturday, April 16, there will be a pop-up vendor market on Old Second Street, from 10 A.M to 3 P.M. featuring a diverse group of local vendors offering handmade goods, art, and various forms of entertainment.

Local Church Looks to Help Ukraine

According to the digital edition of the Fall River Herald, Rev. Rob Nemkovich of Blessed Trinity Parish in Fall River says it's hard not to be inspired by the response he's been witnessing across the Commonwealth and the south coast. On Sunday, Nemkovich will be presenting congregation and community members with the opportunity to send support by contributing funds that will be wired the very next day directly to St. Barbara's, Blessed Trinity's sister parish in southern Poland. Nemkovich has been in contact with the Parish since the war started last month, and says their facilities have been "transformed" into a shelter for refugees who fled Ukraine.


Nemkovich said shelter organizers from the parish will use funds wired from Fall River on Monday to continue buying much-needed supplies which are made available for refugees to browse through and collect in bags that the shelter provides those who wish to contribute to the fund may do so by bringing cash or check in-person to Blessed Trinity Parish on Plymouth Avenue in Fall River, between 8 A.M. and 9:30 A.M.


Hospital opening two child and adolescent units extending bed capacity to 192 beds


Dartmouth, Mass. (March 16, 2022) – Southcoast Behavioral Health (“ScBH”) today reinforced its strong
commitment to the communities it serves through the addition of a dedicated child and adolescent
behavioral health program, expanding the service line from 24 to 48 beds. This is the second bed expansion

since the hospital’s opening in 2015. The first expansion of 24 beds occurred in 2019, providing a Dual
Diagnosis (substance use disorder) unit. The expected completion of this expansion is the first half of
2023. ScBH is operated through a joint venture partnership between Southcoast Health and Acadia


Located in Dartmouth, Massachusetts, Southcoast Behavioral Health is one of New England's leading
providers of inpatient behavioral health treatment. Readily accessible from Cape Cod, Boston, and Rhode

Island, ScBH delivers compassionate care and hope to children, adolescents, adults, and seniors of all
identified genders. The hospital treats a wide array of behavioral health diagnoses.


“We are very pleased to expand our facility to help meet the growing behavioral health needs of our
communities,” said Felicia Risick, Chief Executive Officer of Southcoast Behavioral Health. “We are increasing
our bed capacity to 192 beds, which will make us the second largest behavioral health hospital in the State.

With the addition of a pediatric service line, we can now serve patients through the lifespan, thus aiming to
broadly extend healing throughout our communities. I want to thank the entire hospital staff and our
partners for their commitment and hard work. This milestone would not be possible without you.”

“Since partnering with Southcoast Behavioral Health seven years ago, they have provided life-saving services
to thousands of residents in our area,” said Renee Clark, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer
of Southcoast Health. “The hospital, in collaboration with the Southcoast Health system, has provided
services that treat the whole patient. This expansion – the second in the hospital’s history – is an exciting
moment for our partnership, as together we continue to invest in the future of our communities.”

“We take great pride in the ongoing success and growth of this hospital,” said Dwight Willingham, Operations
Group President of Acadia Healthcare. “Every day we must work to eliminate the stigma around mental
illness, overcome fear and misunderstanding, and make sure all those coping with a behavioral health issues
Southcoast Behavioral Health Hospital Expands Services and Capacity

Galvin Looking for Answers


            Concerned that investors will be facing all of the negative impacts of rising interest rates without seeing any of the positives, Secretary of the Commonwealth William F. Galvin has directed his Securities Division to investigate whether Massachusetts investors are being ill-served by brokers and their in-house and affiliated banks refusing to raise interest rates paid to customers with sweep accounts. 

            The Federal Reserve announced today that interest rates will be raised 0.25% and additional increases are expected later in the year. Galvin believes that with these rate hikes, consumers already struggling to cope with rising costs caused by inflation will also be faced with higher mortgage and credit card rates, while banks keep the interest rates on cash deposits low. 

            “Consumers are being squeezed right now,” Galvin said. “They’re being hit with the double-whammy of higher credit card and loan rates on one end and low rates of interest on their bank accounts and other investments.”

“It’s simply unfair that consumers are being asked to pay more on credit cards and loans, while the banks are pocketing the interest rate hikes that should be earned on custodial money instead of raising interest rates for people who are trying to keep their savings,” Galvin continued. 

            The inquiry being conducted by Galvin’s Securities Division is regarding sweep accounts, which are often used by brokerage firms to hold an investor’s money while it is waiting to be invested. The Division sent letters today to six broker-dealers, inquiring about whether the firms intend to increase the rate of interest on the sweep accounts offered to their customers.

            Letters of inquiry were sent to TD Ameritrade, Merrill Lynch, LPL Financial, Ameriprise, Securities America, and SoFi.

New Bedford Secures Homeless Grant

City Wins Federal Homeless Assistance Funds

New Bedford, Massachusetts – Mayor Jon Mitchell announced today that the City of New Bedford has been awarded $2,090,727 in homeless assistance funding by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), as part of a competitive grant process under HUD’s Continuum of Care Program. 


HUD's Continuum of Care grants provide critically needed support to local programs that serve individuals and families experiencing homelessness. The federal department recently announced a total of $2.65 billion in awards to renew and expand support to thousands of local homeless assistance programs across the nation.


New Bedford’s grant funds are awarded through a very competitive national application process, with local application efforts led by the City’s Office of Housing and Community Development. The office coordinates the City’s comprehensive response to homelessness, using a Continuum of Care methodology and working with the local Homeless Service Provider Network.  


A Continuum of Care is a community’s plan or strategy to organize and deliver housing and services to meet the specific needs of people who are in a housing crisis and/or are experiencing homelessness, as they move toward stable housing and maximum self-sufficiency.  The strategy includes action steps to break cycles of homelessness.


HUD grant funding supports an array of interventions for individuals and families experiencing homelessness, particularly those living in places not meant for habitation, staying in shelters, or at imminent risk of becoming homeless. Each year, HUD funding serves hundreds of people through a coordinated entry system, emergency shelter, rapid rehousing, transitional housing, and permanent housing programs.


“The awarding of this grant highlights the important work that we are doing to address homelessness through the Homeless Service Provider Network,” Mayor Jon Mitchell said. “I want to thank the more than 50 network stakeholders, community leaders, and organizations who work with the City on a daily basis, without fanfare, to address the complex issue of homelessness in New Bedford. This funding will enable that work to continue and will strengthen our efforts to stabilize the lives of the homeless in our city.” 


Patrick Sullivan, director of the City’s Office of Housing and Community Development, said: “The funding received through these grants is essential for people experiencing homelessness. This  very competitive Continuum of Care application requires a high degree of collaboration and coordination with our homeless service providers and partners. Our office works with the Homeless Service Provider Network’s executive committee to ensure that New Bedford puts forth a competitive application, so that New Bedford ‘s most vulnerable populations receive the highest level of services and access to safe, permanent housing.”  

The grant funding will support eight local programs, along with data and strategic planning efforts. Funds will be distributed to the following programs and agencies:

?    Family Preservation Program (SEMCOA)                          $ 411,708 
?    Welcome Home (Steppingstone)                                          $ 308,815  
?    Portico (Catholic Social Services)                                         $ 725,211 
?    Step Up (PAACA)                                                                   $316,917 
?    Prism (Catholic Social Services)                                           $ 132,155
?    The Call – Coordinated Entry (Catholic Social Services) $   50,000 
?    Homeless Management Information System                     $   74,524 
?    Planning Grant                                                                        $   71,397

MTA on Diversity

MTA Supports Legislation to Increase Educator Diversity

Massachusetts Teachers Association President Merrie Najimy issued the following statement today in support of “An Act relative to educator diversity,” which has been favorably reported out by the Legislature’s Joint Committee on Education.

The lack of racial, ethnic and linguistic diversity among the state’s teaching force is a significant structural problem that the Massachusetts Teachers Association has been addressing for years. Our members transformed their lived experiences from working in public schools into action, working with Representative Nika Elugardo and Senator Adam Gomez on a bill to create alternatives to the Massachusetts Tests for Educator Licensure.

Just as one-size-fits-all assessments do not accurately demonstrate our students’ abilities, the narrow scope of the MTEL has been identified as discriminatory against educators of color and educators who are linguistically gifted but for whom English is not their first language.

There are other ways to demonstrate competency as an educator, and An Act relative to educator diversity — which closely mirrors the bill that MTA members worked on — sets the state on a path to bring further excellence into our classrooms.

The education experience of all of our students — regardless of their ancestral, racial and ethnic backgrounds — will be enriched by having a diverse set of educators throughout their learning years. Our students, who themselves represent ever more diverse backgrounds, need our public schools to be recruiting and retaining more educators of color and educators from varied backgrounds.


This bill will help shatter stereotypes, allow more students to experience cultural affinity with their teachers, greatly expand the perspectives in our classrooms, and simply allow more people of color into the highly regarded profession of teacher. It will also influence our educator preparatory programs.

Passage of the Student Opportunity Act was one way to address structural racism as it exists in funding for our public schools. An Act relative to educator diversity is another way to dismantle other structures of racism as they exist in public education — and thanks to the SOA, districts will have the resources to attract the qualified and diverse educators that our students deserve.

The MTA appreciates the important roles that Representative Elugardo, Senator Gomez and the Joint Committee on Education — led by its chairs, Representative Alice Peisch and Senator Jason Lewis — have played in helping to elevate and advance an issue that has been a core focus of our members. We look forward to continued work with the Legislature on fine-tuning the bill to maximize its effectiveness and to supply the knowledge and insight of our members.

NBPD Officer Stops Armed Juvenile

According to CBS 12 in Providence, a traffic stop in New Bedford over the weekend led to the arrest of two people, including a 16-year-old. Police said around 6 P.M.  a patrol officer saw a vehicle speeding through the Temple Landing Apartment complex on Middle Street with "an individual hanging out of the window, yelling. That officer pulled the vehicle over and discovered there were five people inside, including four juveniles. Police said one of the juveniles had a loaded, semi-automatic firearm and was placed under arrest and charged with carrying a firearm and operating a motor vehicle unlicensed. Yuzeyka Negron, 19, was the only adult in the vehicle and was also arrested on two active warrants, according to police.


The incident remains under investigation at this time.

Local Health Center Being Investigated

According to NBC 10 in Providence, immigrant women and mothers in Massachusetts are calling on state officials to investigate complaints of discriminatory and substandard care at a major Boston health clinic. Lawyers for Civil Rights, a Boston-based legal advocacy group, said yesterday it is filing a formal request for State Attorney General Maura Healey's Office and the State Department of Public Health to jointly open a review into the East Boston Neighborhood Health Center's compliance with civil rights and public health laws. Patricia Montes, head of Centro Presente, a Boston-based latino organization assisting the families, says immigrant patients have repeatedly reported substandard, discriminatory treatment at the clinic, resulting in "misdiagnosis, worsened health conditions, even death." Iván Espinoza-Madrigal, Executive Director of Lawyers for civil rights, said the state should conduct an investigation into the clinic through the lens of civil rights laws on immigrants, women and those with public health benefits.

Chris Sale Red Sox Rib Issue

Thomas Harrigan

Red Sox ace Chris Sale has a stress fracture in his right rib cage and won’t be ready for Opening Day, chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom announced on Wednesday.

This will mark the third straight year that Sale isn’t on Boston’s Opening Day roster. The left-hander underwent Tommy John surgery in March 2020 and didn’t make his return until last August.

He went 5-1 with a 3.16 ERA and 52 strikeouts over 42 2/3 innings for the Red Sox during the regular season and allowed eight earned runs across nine innings in three postseason starts.

Sale also made multiple trips to the IL in 2018 due to left shoulder inflammation and dealt with left elbow inflammation in ‘19, leading Boston shutting him down for the season in August. The last time he threw more than 158 innings in a season was 2017, his first year with the Red Sox after the team acquired him from the White Sox.

One of the best pitchers of his generation, Sale made seven straight All-Star teams from 2012-18 and finished sixth or better in the American League Cy Young Award voting in each of those years.

Patriots Transactions in NFL Free Agency

This information from

Tracking all of the Patriots transactions during the free agent signing period.

OL James Ferentz - Reportedly Re-Signed | Full Analysis | Bio

Analysis: "Ferentz has provided valuable insurance along the offensive line over the last four seasons, with two spot starts in each of the last three years when he was thrust into duty. His return adds a layer of insurance along the interior where Ferentz can fill in at center or guard." - Mike Dussault

K Nick Folk - Reportedly Re-Signed | Full Analysis | Bio

Analysis: "At 37 years old, Folk has shown no sign of slowing down and has maintained reliable consistency, earning the trust of the coaching staff. The team also has second-year kicker Quinn Nordin under contract for camp competition and development." - Mike Dussault

QB Brian Hoyer - Reportedly Re-Signed | Full Analysis | Bio

Analysis: "Hoyer will provide valuable experience and leadership for the quarterback room, especially after the departure of offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels. Some had speculated Hoyer could transition to a coaching role but he'll be back as a player in 2022 after spending most of the last four-of-five seasons in New England. He attempted just 11 passes in 2021, serving as the primary backup to Mac Jones, but will ensure vital continuity behind the scenes." - Mike Dussault

FS Devin McCourty - Reportedly Re-Signed | Full Analysis | Bio

Analysis: "The safety group continues to be a strength for the defense and McCourty's return ensures that a high level of experience and communication will continue to be the standard on the back end." - Mike Dussault

SpT Matthew Slater - Reportedly Re-Signed | Full Analysis | Bio

Analysis: "Slater continues to provide stellar special teams play as well as off-field leadership where he's often seen breaking down the post-game huddle with a personal message. One of the core leaders of the team for a decade-and-a-half, Slater is a tone-setting piece who will ensure some important continuity." - Mike Dussault

RB James White - Reportedly Re-Signed | Full Analysis | Bio

Analysis: "White was limited to just three games in 2021, but showed good chemistry with quarterback Mac Jones, grabbing 12 catches for 84 yards, providing just a small glimpse of the connections that they also shared during training camp. His return will help round out an excellent running back room that also features Damien Harris and Rhamondre Stevenson." - Mike Dussault

LB Mack Wilson - Reportedly Acquired in a Trade with Browns | Full Analysis

Analysis: "Wilson is entering his fourth season out of Alabama with 28 starts under his belt after being selected in the fifth round of the 2019 entry draft. With a bevy of unproven edge players on their roster, swapping Winovich for the inside, off-the-ball linebacker Wilson makes sense, especially when viewed through the lens of free agents Dont'a Hightower and Ja'Whaun Bentley, who were New England's main inside starters in 2021." - Mike Dussault

NFL Free Agency 2022: Frequently Asked Questions
2022 Patriots Mock Draft Tracker
Patriots 2022 Free Agency Primer
CB J.C. Jackson - Reportedly Signing with Chargers

C Ted Karras - Reportedly Signing with Bengals | Full Report

Analysis: "The Patriots will now have a need to replace the versatile interior lineman. Michael Onwenu could again be projected to take over at left guard as he was last year before juggling landed with Karras as the starter, but Karras' backup ability was one of his most reassuring strengths and something that is not easily replaced." - Mike Dussault

G Shaq Mason - Reportedly Traded to the Buccaneers | Full Report

Analysis: "Mason was their best and most consistent offensive lineman and his departure will be a tough hole to fill, especially as Mac Jones looks to develop in year two. He'll need consistent protection, especially up the middle. David Andrews' presence should ease the transition and Onwenu would seem to solve at least one of the starting spots but it's tough to say goodbye to another proven vet." - Mike Dussault

LB Chase Winovich - Reportedly Traded to the Browns | Full Analysis

ILB Ja'Whaun Bentley (unrestricted)
RB Brandon Bolden (unrestricted)
RT Trent Brown (unrestricted)
OLB Jamie Collins (unrestricted)
TE Troy Fumagalli (restricted)
LB Terez Hall (exclusive rights)
ILB Dont'a Hightower (unrestricted)
FB Jakob Johnson (restricted)
FS Brandon King (unrestricted)
ILB Harvey Langi (unrestricted)
WR Jakobi Meyers (restricted - tendered)
WR Gunner Olszewski (restricted)
Related Content

White Back in New England

This information first appeared on the Website 

Mike Dussault Writer

According to a report by's Tom Pelissero, the Patriots are retaining another one of their veteran captains, signing James White to a two-year pact.

White was limited to just three games in 2021, but showed good chemistry with quarterback Mac Jones, grabbing 12 catches for 84 yards, providing just a small glimpse of the connections that they also shared during training camp. His return will help round out an excellent running back room that also features Damien Harris and Rhamondre Stevenson.

The Boston Herald's Karen Guregian wrote in recent weeks that White was progressing well in his recovery from the hip injury that ended his season. White will enter his ninth season with the team as his prognosis will continue to be something to monitor. If fully healthy, the two-year deal will provide some security at the passing back role, while the team could still look for his eventual replacement in draft. Harris is also set to hit free agency in 2023.

White was elected captain in four-straight seasons from 2018-2021 and has the most receptions (364), receiving yards (3,161) and receiving touchdowns (25) by a running back in the NFL since 2015.

New UMass Justice Center

UMass Dartmouth awarded grant for creation of Transformative Justice Center


Massachusetts Board of Higher Education awarded the University and partners Massasoit Community College and UMass Law $150,000 to establish a Transformative Justice Program and Center


UMass Dartmouth was recently awarded a $150,000 grant from the Massachusetts Higher Education Innovation Fund (HEIF) to create a Transformative Justice Practitioner’s Certificate Program to serve students from UMass Dartmouth, Massasoit Community College, and UMass Law.


The grant also funds the process to begin establishing a Transformative Justice Center at UMass Dartmouth. This award follows an initial $150,000 grant in spring 2021 that funded research and data collection toward creating the inter-campus Transformative Justice Practitioner’s curriculum.


Principal Investigators Dr. Viviane Saleh-Hanna, Dr. Tammi Arford, and Dr. Erin K. Krafft, all Crime and Justice Studies faculty members, are leading a multi-campus team to build the infrastructure needed for a new Certificate Program while laying the groundwork to build a Transformative Justice Center on the UMass Dartmouth Main Campus.


“The data we gathered last year through Campus Justice Climate surveys and intensive focus groups at the three campuses with students, faculty, staff, and administrators showed a strong need and desire for Transformative Justice Programming and Services,” said Drs. Saleh-Hanna, Arford, and Krafft.


The Transformative Justice Practitioner Certificate Program, run through UMass Dartmouth’s Crime and Justice Studies Department, will be instrumental to the region’s health and growth by giving students a background in the histories and theories of Transformative Justice and instruction in the applied practices of Transformative Justice, including conflict mediation, trauma-informed facilitation skills, and envisioning and building Transformative Justice responses to both individual and structural harms and violence.

Controlled Burn in R-I


PROVIDENCE – The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (DEM) is scheduled to conduct a one-day prescribed burn on part of Dutch Island, a state property located in Narragansett Bay between Jamestown and North Kingstown, at some point in the next 30 to 45 days. The exact timing of the burn, to be led by DEM’s Divisions of Fish and Wildlife (DFW) and Agriculture and Forest Environment, depends on specific fuel and weather conditions. 


The controlled height of the flames will be about 2-4 feet and is dependent on the fuel load. All kinds of plant material can act as fuel including grasses, shrubs, trees, dead leaves, etc. No area on Dutch Island during the burn will be fully enclosed by flames for safety. A controlled burn requires a clear day with sustained winds out of a specific direction to ensure some level of predictability and to disperse smoke. DEM will further advise the public when it has determined a burn window within which the exact date of the burn can be ascertained.

Fall River Suspect Considered Dangerous

A 24-year-old Fall River man who allegedly attempted to stab a Fall River Police officer less than an hour after allegedly robbing another man in January has been found dangerous by a superior court judge and will be held without bail for at least the next 180 days, Bristol County District Attorney.


Dillon Nobles was indicted by a Bristol County Grand Jury last month on charges of armed assault with intent to murder, resisting arrest, armed assault with intent to rob and four counts of assault with a dangerous weapon.


On January 24th, Fall River Police responded to 482 Globe St. and spoke with an assistant manager for Nature’s Medicine. The manager indicated to officers that a male she identified as this defendant had come inside her store with his mother. The manager explained that while speaking with the defendant, he became belligerent with her, and she believed he was under the influence of some drug so she asked him to leave. After the defendant was outside for a few minutes, she came outside and saw the defendant pull out a knife and go towards a man who was standing outside. Officers also spoke with the male victim, who stated he did not have his ID on him and recognized the defendant from prison, so he asked the defendant if he could purchase marijuana for him.


The defendant agreed and the victim gave him $30.  When the defendant was ejected from the store, he allegedly yelled to the male, “Now you just got beat. I’m going to stab you.” The defendant then pulled out a switch blade with the blade extended and attempted to stab the victim in the abdomen before fleeing with his cash. This incident was captured on video surveillance. 


Approximately 20 minutes later, Fall River Police and paramedics were dispatched to the SRTA bus terminal for a report of a male who was non-responsive on a bus. Officers noted that when they arrived paramedics were already rendering aid to a male, later identified as the defendant, who needed to be administered a sternum rub in order to get him to respond.


The defendant, upon waking, became combative and defiant, yelling at paramedics and appearing to be under the influence of some drug. Officers were able to convince the defendant to exit the bus without a physical altercation, but once he realized the officer was walking him towards the ambulance and stretcher, the defendant stopped moving forward and pulled out a knife from his pocket. The defendant then slashed at the officer with the knife, almost hitting him in the upper abdomen and neck area.


The officer drew his weapon, and the defendant then took a step towards the officer with the knife raised over his head in an assaultive manner before abruptly turning and walking the other way. Numerous officers pursued the defendant, shouting commands for him to stop and drop the knife. Another officer got in front of the defendant and the defendant yelled to that officer that he was going to have to kill him. The officer then attempted to stop the defendant by grabbing his arm, at which point the defendant attempted to stab that officer in the head with the knife. A struggle ensued, during which police had to deploy a taser on the defendant. Only then were they able to place the defendant under arrest.  This incident was also captured on video surveillance.


The defendant was initially arraigned in late January in Fall River District Court and held as a danger.  He has since been indicted and arraigned in Superior Court, where a new dangerousness hearing was held earlier this month.  On March 10th, Fall River Superior Court Judge Renee Dupuis issued an order finding the defendant to be a danger to the community and ordered him held without bail.  The defendant is due back in superior court on April 8th for a pretrial conference.

NE Patriots Trading Winovich to the Browns

The New England Patriots are sending Chase Winovich to the Browns in a trade.’s Digital Content Editor Jeremy Bergman reported in his latest article.


“The New England Patriots are trading edge rusher Chase Winovich? to the Cleveland Browns in exchange for linebacker ?Mack Wilson?, NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reported Tuesday. The trade cannot be made official until Wednesday at 4 p.m. ET when the 2022 league year officially begins. Winovich, entering his fourth season in the NFL after being drafted 77th overall in 2019, played in 13 games last season, but saw his play time decrease from 2020, when he started nine games for the Patriots. Over his three years, the former Michigan product has 11 sacks, though none of them came last year.


Drafted in the fifth round of the same draft, Wilson carved out a nice starting role in Cleveland over his first three seasons, starting 28 of 43 games played in the middle of the Browns defense. Like Winovich, the former Alabama standout also saw his play time decrease on defense in 2021 and played nearly as many snaps on special teams as he did at LB.

In Winovich, Cleveland gets some pass rush depth that could help offset the potential loss of ?Jadeveon Clowney?. In Wilson, the Patriots reap an inexpensive defender with starter potential to help replace ?Dont'a Hightower?, ?Ja'Whaun Bentley? and ?Jamie Collins?, all of whom may leave in free agency, plus some valuable special teams experience. Both players are entering the final years of their rookie deals.”


**WSAR does not own the rights to this article and remains property of the NFL**

Tom Brady gives a TB 12 Gift To BMC Durfee

Former Patriots Quarterback Tom Brady, through the T-B 12 Foundation, has donated 24 T-B 12 vibrarting pliability Mini Spheres to the B-M-C Durfee Athletic Department in Fall River. 


The donation is worth over $2300 and was approved Monday Night by the Fall RIver School Committee. 


Administrators indicated the donation will be used with student athletes for their recovery and performance. 


Athletic Trainders and Strength and Conditioning Coaches will monitor the use of the devices. 



Scott Hall Dead At 63

This article first appeared on

Marc Raimondi
ESPN Staff Writer

Scott Hall, one of the most influential men in the history of professional wrestling, died Monday, according to WWE. He was 63.

Hall, a two-time WWE Hall of Fame inductee, broke his hip last month, PW Torch reported, and had severe health complications during surgery to repair it over the weekend.

Kevin Nash, Hall's longtime best friend and former tag-team partner, wrote Sunday on Instagram that Hall was on life support, which he was later removed from Monday, according to close friend Sean Waltman.

"He's gone," Waltman wrote Monday night on Twitter.

Hall, nicknamed "The Bad Guy," made his biggest mark in wrestling as a founding member of the group that would go on to be called the New World Order (nWo). He left the then-WWF in 1996, where he was known as "Razor Ramon," to sign as a free agent with WCW. It was a major contract that ignited a series of lucrative free-agent signings going back and forth between WWF and WCW, during one of the hottest periods in pro wrestling.

The storyline that was portrayed once Hall arrived in the company was that he was an invader, perhaps working on behalf of the WWF, attempting to take over WCW.

Nash, known as "Diesel" in WWF, would sign with WCW, too, and join Hall to become The Outsiders. In July 1996, Hulk Hogan, a longtime wholesome "good guy" and massively popular name, joined Hall and Nash to form the villainous nWo, launching one of the great groups and storylines in the history of pro wrestling.

"Scott was one of the greatest performers I ever saw," former WCW wrestler and head of creative Kevin Sullivan said on his podcast in 2020.

The 6-foot-7 Hall, a Maryland native who moved around often as a child due to his father's service in the military, got his pro-wrestling start in Championship Wrestling of Florida in 1984. He bounced around across the AWA, New Japan Pro-Wrestling, WWC in Puerto Rico and WCW in the late 1980s and early 1990s, before hooking on with WWF in 1992. It was there that he starred as Razor Ramon, a Miami-Cuban character based on Scarface.

Scott Hall would team with Kevin Nash and Hulk Hogan to form the original New World Order (nWo), a group whose impact on pop culture still resonates today. WWE
In WWF, Hall performed in a historic ladder match with Shawn Michaels at WrestleMania X and won the WWF Intercontinental title four times.

In WCW, Hall won the tag team titles seven times (six with Nash as The Outsiders), the United States Heavyweight championship twice and World Television title once. The nWo was a revolutionary concept, because it broke down the fourth wall in pro wrestling like never before. The WWF ended up suing WCW, claiming WCW was using its intellectual property -- that Hall and Nash were playing the same characters they did in WWF and were pretending to still be working for WWF.

Booned by the buzz created by the nWo, WCW beat WWF in the head-to-head cable television ratings for 83 weeks straight, something that would have been unheard of just a year earlier.

Hall and Nash were cast as heels, or bad guys, but fans embraced them anyway, because of their magnetic charisma that popped off the screen. The toothpick-chewing Hall had an iconic look with long, dark, slicked-back hair and a single curl on his forehead. He had memorable catchphrases, like "hey, yo" and "survey says." His finishing move, a slam while Hall is holding up his opponent by both arms outstretched, was called the "Razor's Edge."

"There was nobody cooler than Scott Hall," former WCW and current AEW broadcaster Tony Schiavone told ESPN last summer. "Kevin Nash was cool, too, but freakin' Scott Hall was ahead of his time."

The pop-culture impact of Hall and the nWo is still felt today. NBA star Kevin Durant wore an nWo jacket last year before a Brooklyn Nets game. Comedian Aziz Ansari and model Kendall Jenner were spotted wearing nWo shirts in recent years. In 2018, Drake was pictured wearing a Razor Ramon shirt. Rapper Westside Gunn and brother Conway the Machine go by the handle "Hall n Nash" as a duo.

"I didn't wanna be Jordan I wanted to be SCOTT," Westside Gunn tweeted Monday.

After WCW went out of business and was bought by the WWF in 2001, Hall returned to the now-WWE with Nash and Hogan to reform the nWo. In 2002, Hall was released by WWE due to issues related to substance use. Hall later sought treatment and had reportedly gotten sober in recent years.

Hall had several runs in Total Nonstop Action (TNA) during the 2000s. In 2014, he was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame as his individual character from WWF, Razor Ramon. A second induction followed in 2020. Hall went in as part of the nWo with Nash, Hogan and Sean "X-Pac" Waltman.

"We were the 'Outsiders' but we had each other," Nash wrote on Instagram. "Scott always felt he wasn't worthy of the afterlife. Well God please have some gold-plated toothpicks for my brother. My life was enriched with his take on life. He wasn't perfect but as he always said 'The last perfect person to walk the planet they nailed to a cross.'"

Hall capped his 2014 Hall of Fame speech with a line that has been shared all over social media in the past few days.

"Hard work pays off," Hall said. "Dreams come true. Bad times don't last. But bad guys do."

An Arrest in Seekonk

On Monday, March 14, 2022, just prior to noontime, multiple officers were dispatched to the Home
Depot on Highland Avenue in Seekonk for the report of a larceny in progress. Upon arrival, the male
suspect fled the store and entered a motor vehicle in the parking lot. Officers attempted to remove the
suspect from the vehicle, however, the suspect was able to get the vehicle into gear. As the suspect fled,
he struck one officer with his motor vehicle and drove directly at a second officer. A small pursuit
ensued where the suspect struck multiple vehicles on Rt. 6, ultimately rolling over his own vehicle in the
City of East Providence. With the assistance of the East Providence Police Department, the suspect was
taken into custody without further incident. The struck officer was transported to a nearby hospital
where he was treated for minor injuries. The subject was placed under arrest by EPPD and identified as:
Albert Rosario of Providence, RI Age: 32
MA Charges:
Assault & Battery with Dangerous Weapon
Assault with Dangerous Weapon
Use of MV in Commission of Felony
Fail to Stop for Police
Unlicensed Operation of MV
Reckless Operation of MV
Assorted traffic charges
Additionally, Rosario had nine (9) active warrants for his arrest out of the State of Massachusetts.

MA Gasoline This Week

AAA: Massachusetts Gas Prices Up 19 Cents

Westwood, MA, March 14, 2022 — Massachusetts’s average gas price is up 19 cents from last week ($4.16), averaging $4.35 per gallon. Today’s price is 86 cents higher than a month ago ($3.49), and $1.60 higher than March 14, 2021 ($2.75). Massachusetts’s average gas price 3 cents higher than the national average.

After cresting above $123 per barrel shortly after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the price of crude oil has gradually fallen below $110. If this trend holds, it may remove some of the extreme upward price pressure consumers have found at the pump, but not all. 

“It bears reminding that the cost of oil accounts for about 50% of what drivers pay at the pump,” says Mary Maguire, Director of Public/Government Affairs. “This war is roiling an already tight global oil market and making it hard to determine if we are near a peak for pump prices, or if they keep grinding higher. It all depends on the direction of oil prices.”

AAA Northeast’s March 14 survey of fuel prices found the current national average to be 26 cents higher than last week ($4.06), averaging $4.32 a gallon. Today’s national average price is 84 cents higher a month ago ($3.48), and $1.47 higher than this day last year ($2.85).

Collections Finished in Seekonk

Due to the overwhelming support of the Seekonk Town Residents and people from all over the State, the Seekonk Fire Department is unable to receive further donations for Ukraine at this time.
The Seekonk Fire Department is grateful for all of the donations which were provided. A special appreciation goes to the following:
The Home Depot
Party City
Regency Liquors
Seekonk Firefighters Local 1931
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The Pot Debate in RI Continues

Cannabis legalization bill to have Senate hearing tomorrow

STATE HOUSE – The proposal for legalizing and regulating recreational cannabis is scheduled for a hearing tomorrow before the Senate Judiciary Committee, along with other proposals relating to marijuana.
The committee is scheduled to meet tomorrow, Tuesday, March 15, at the rise of the Senate (sometime after 4:30 p.m.) in Room 313 on the third floor of the State House. Scheduled for a vote is: 

•    2022-S 2430 — This bill sponsored by Senate Health and Human Services Committee Chairman Joshua Miller (D-Dist. 28, Cranston, Providence) would legalize, regulate and tax the sale and possession of cannabis for recreational use. 

•    2022-S 2364 — Sponsored by Sen. Frank Lombardo III (D-Dist. 25, Johnston), this bill would allow medical marijuana to be prescribed by veterinarians to animals with a debilitating medical condition.

This meeting will be streamed live at and televised on Capitol Television, which can be seen on Cox Channels 15 and 61, in high definition on Cox Channel 1061, on Full Channel on Channel 15 and on Channel 34 by Verizon subscribers.


New Bedford Home Rule Petition Request

Mayor Mitchell Files Bill to Reform the Selection Process for Fire Department Leadership

New Bedford, Massachusetts – Mayor Jon Mitchell has filed a Home Rule Petition with the City Council that would reform the way New Bedford Fire Department leadership is selected, by removing the positions of Fire Chief and Deputy Fire Chief from the state’s Civil Service System. The measure would not apply to the current holders of the two positions, only to their successors. 

The change in the hiring process would allow for the selection of candidates based on their proven leadership capabilities, knowledge, and skills most suited to the needs of the City, rather than a one-time exam or assessment that’s administered by the state and attempts to determine in one day the fitness for the Fire Department’s top executive management positions.

The exam and related assessment process are based on statewide criteria with no content tailored to the specific challenges or needs of New Bedford. 

“By making ascension to the top ranks essentially a function of longevity and exam scores, the cultivation of individual leadership ability within the Fire Department is de-incentivized,” Mayor Jon Mitchell said. “No executive management positions in the private sector are filled by one-time tests or evaluations--and with very good reason. It takes time and careful attention to determine whether someone has the leadership skills and disposition to serve effectively in a senior executive role.” 

The Mayor added, “The New Bedford City Council voted in 1996 to remove the positions of Police Chief and Deputy Police Chief from Civil Service, precisely because the system constrained the City’s ability to select the best candidates for these positions. New Bedford Fire Department is currently under the capable command of Fire Chief Scott Kruger and Deputy Chief Brian Medeiros. We have an effective leadership team despite the Civil Service system, not because of it. It’s time for the City to take a long-overdue step of removing the 19th-century constraints on leadership and development so that New Bedford will, in future decisions, have the best chance at having the leadership necessary for our Fire Department to perform with maximum effectiveness.”

Many Massachusetts municipalities already have taken steps to remove their Chiefs and/or Deputies from the Civil Service System. Cities including Lowell and Lawrence, and towns including neighboring Dartmouth, all have chosen to have non-Civil Service fire chiefs and/or deputies. 

The Civil Service system was enacted in the late 19th century when positions in public employment were subject to minimal standards for appointment, and political patronage was rampant. At the system’s core is the requirement that hiring and promotion be based largely on a written examination that is scored by a state agency, which ordinarily has no distinct tie to New Bedford. This method unduly ties the city’s hands when selecting a fire chief.  

The exam objectifies hiring and promotion decisions, effectively erecting a barrier to patronage. Nearly 150 years later, the system still serves that purpose for entry-level employees--but it inhibits the cultivation of leadership necessary to the success of large organizations. Effective organizational leadership requires skills, knowledge, and abilities that cannot be adequately measured on a standardized exam or assessment. 

Fall River Youth of The Year

Fall River Youth of the Year Ceremony

(FALL RIVER, MA- March 14, 2022)- Mayor Paul Coogan, in conjunction with the SchoolCommunity Partnership, will host the Youth of the Year Ceremony on Wednesday, March
16th at 9:00 a.m. in the Granite Grille in Durfee High School. The Youth of the Year
Award is designed to recognize and honor the outstanding contributions and achievements of the
young people of Fall River who have served their community through leadership, knowledge,
skill and/or service. The award is sponsored by the School Community Partnership, a task force
of Greater Fall River Partners for a Healthier Community.

The award is a three-part process: a nomination by a caring adult, an essay by the youth
and an interview. Youth were nominated based on their accomplishments in 2021 in the areas
of: personal achievement, leadership abilities, healthy living and/or community
involvement. The essay required the youth to explain why “you matter” by talking about the
positive attributes and characteristics that make them unique and the reason why the world is a
better place because they are in it.

The announcement of the Youth of the Year will take place on the day before Absolutely
Incredible Kid Day. The award reinforces the premise of the day which is to highlight how
incredible and how important the youth truly are. The YOTY and AIKD are a celebration for all
youth and what they mean for not only the future, but for the betterment of Fall River now.

Fall River Dog Licenses


Dog licenses for the 2022 licensing period of April 1, 2022 to March 31, 2023 will be available
at the Fall River City Clerk’s Office Monday through Thursday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and
Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. beginning on Monday, March 14, 2022. Counter service
will be provided in the Government Center Lobby from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. on March 14,

Licenses may also be purchased by sending a request by mail to City Clerk, One Government
Center, Fall River, MA 02722 or on the city’s website by searching “Dog

Owners are required to obtain a dog license for all dogs four months or older. Dog owners
cannot be issued a license unless they first produce a veterinarian’s certificate indicating that
their dog has been vaccinated against rabies and that the vaccination has not expired. To avoid
unnecessary inconvenience, when applying for a dog license, please bring a valid veterinarian’s
certificate with current Fall River address.

License fees are $15.00 for male or female dogs and $10.00 for neutered males or spayed
females. To obtain a neutered male or spayed female license, owners must present a
veterinarian’s certificate stating that the dog has been neutered or spayed. A $5.00 mail
processing fee for the total order is required for mailed and online requests.


All forms of
payment are accepted. Checks or money orders should be made payable to the City of Fall River.
Under Massachusetts General Laws, any dog owner 70 years of age or older is entitled to a free
license with proof of age. Owners of unlicensed dogs shall be subject to all fines and penalties as
set forth in Section 6-12 of the Code of the City of Fall River.


Mayor Coogan Wants the Brightman Street Bridge Removed

According to the digital edition of the Fall River Herald, Mayor Paul Coogan says it's time for the abandoned Brightman Street bridge to go away. Mayor Coogan called the old green bridge connecting Fall River to Somerset which opened in 1911 and ended in 2011 with the opening of the new Veterans Memorial Bridge "an eyesore," and "a bridge to nowhere."


The mayor said he's waiting for a response from the office of Governor Charlie Baker to a letter he sent last December, requesting that the Commonwealth demolish and remove the drawbridge.

Daylight Savings Time Starts Sunday

You will need to move all your clocks up one hour Sunday at 2am as Eastern Standard Time will begin in Massachusetts and in New England. 

The Red Sox 2022 Schedule

The end of the 99-day MLB Lockout and a new CBA has produced a most unusual schedule for the Boston Red Sox, who will open the 2022 162 game schedule on April 7 in Yankee Stadium 


The Home Opener at Fenway Park will be on Friday April 15 versus Minnesota. 


That date will begin a 17 day stretch in which the Sox will not have a day off until May 2. 


The month of July will see the Sox play 27 games, with only the All Star Break as their scheduled days off. 


Still to be determined are when conventional doubleheaders will be played to make up the games that were orignally taken off the schedule during negotiations that resulted in a new five year CBA. 

Joe and Troy Headed to ESPN for MNF

This information first appeared in the New York Post and The Boston Globe 

Joe Buck, the voice of both the World Series and the Super Bowl for more than a quarter-century with Fox Sports, is expected to depart for ESPN, according to the New York Post.

The 52-year-old Buck reportedly will join former Fox broadcast partner Troy Aikman on “Monday Night Football” on a contract that will pay him $60 million-$75 million over five years.

Buck joined Fox in 1994, rising to become the voice of a generation of big events. He has called 23 World Series, including every one since 2000, and six Super Bowls as Fox’s lead play-by-play man since Pat Summerall’s retirement in 2002.

According to the Post, Buck has one year and $11 million remaining on his Fox contract, but the network “is letting him out early as a good gesture for his years of service to the company.”

Aikman, the Hall of Fame quarterback and Buck’s color commentator for the last 20 seasons, departed for ESPN earlier this month on a reported five-year deal worth $92.5 million. The agreement has not been announced, but Aikman has confirmed his departure in other media.

With Daylight Savings Time Returning

Spring Forward and Stay Alert at the Wheel


For many, the arrival of Daylight Saving Time signals that spring sunshine is just around the corner. But the time change can also forecast an increase in the risk of a crash, AAA warns.

Daylight Saving Time begins at 2 a.m. Sunday, March 13, and AAA is reminding drivers that the change in daylight hours may create additional distractions on the roadways, and challenges for drivers who’ve lost an hour of sleep, and perhaps are not sleeping as well due to the time change.

“As we spring forward, drivers should be aware that the time change will also mean changes to driving habits. Some drivers may suddenly find themselves driving into the rising or setting sun and there may be more sun glare during commuting hours,” said Mary Maguire, Director of Public/Government Affairs for AAA Northeast. “Research from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety shows that drowsy driving is a factor in 10 percent of crashes, and many drivers will have to adjust to getting less sleep during the week following the time change.”

As the days become longer, more children, pedestrians, joggers, walkers and bicyclists will likely be more active outdoors and during peak travel times. AAA reminds motorists and pedestrians to remember the following tips to stay safe:

Tips for Motorists

•    In the morning, watch for pedestrians when backing up in parking lots or driveways. Turn on your headlights to make yourself more visible.
•    Leave more following distance. When the sun is in your eyes it can be hard to see what the car ahead is doing.
•    Watch out for children and others who are outdoors in the lighter evening hours.
•    Remember to yield the right of way to pedestrians in crosswalks. Do not pass vehicles stopped at crosswalks.


Tips for Pedestrians
•    Cross only at intersections or crosswalks. Do not jaywalk or cross between parked cars.
•    Avoid walking in traffic where there are no sidewalks or crosswalks. If you must walk on a road that does not have sidewalks, walk facing traffic.
•    See and be seen. Carry a flashlight and wear reflective clothing and/or accessories.
•    Don’t walk and text. If you must use your cell phone, be sure to keep your eyes on traffic and your ears open to make sure you can hear approaching danger. 
Drowsy Driving

Don’t Be Asleep at the Wheel:  Drowsy driving is a big traffic safety issue.  Americans “springing forward” by moving their clocks ahead by one hour need to remember to also adjust their sleep schedule to prevent drowsiness on the road.  
•    According to AAA Foundation research: 
o    Drivers who have slept for less than 5 hours have a crash risk comparable to someone driving drunk.
o    Drivers who miss one to two hours of sleep can nearly double their risk for a crash.
o    96% of drivers view drowsy driving as a completely unacceptable behavior that is a serious threat to their safety, but nearly 29% admit to driving when they were so tired they had a hard time keeping their eyes open at least once in the prior 30 days.
•    AAA recommends that drivers:
o    Should not rely on their bodies to provide warning signs for drowsiness and should instead prioritize getting at least seven hours of sleep before hitting the road.
o    Travel at times of the day when they are normally awake.
o    Avoid heavy foods.
o    Avoid medications that cause drowsiness or other impairment. 

AAA Northeast is a not-for-profit auto club with 70 offices in Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Jersey, New Hampshire and New York, providing more than 6 million local AAA members with travel, insurance, finance, and auto-related services.

Annual Rehoboth-Seekonk Rabies Clinic - Saturday, March 12

PLACE:   Seekonk Public Safety Building, Fire Division 500 Taunton Ave (Route 44), Seekonk, MA - FEE: $15.00 per Animal – CASH ONLY ACCEPTED FOR VACCINATIONS       from 9:00 AM-12:00 PM
The Rabies clinic is open to non-residents and Rehoboth-Seekonk animal owners.  Cats and ferrets must be in a secured carrier, dogs on leashes.  For MA and RI animal owners, in order to be issued a MA three-year Rabies certificate you must bring either a certificate for a Rabies vaccination dated between 3/12/21 and 6/12/21, or a previous MA or RI three year Rabies certificate from your veterinarian.  You can also bring last year’s Rabies certificate as documentation.  A one year vaccination certificate will be issued if you do not your current rabies certificate.

The clinic is open to dogs, cats and ferrets.  Dr. Truesdale from Central Ave Veterinary Hospital will be administering the vaccinations.  Proceeds will benefit the Seekonk Animal Control Department
The 2022 Rehoboth Dog Licenses can be processed at the Rabies Clinic by the Rehoboth Town Clerk's Office with proof of rabies and payment.  Dog licenses for 2022 are due by April 1, 2022, any licenses issued after May 31, 2022 will include a late fee of $15.00 per dog.  
The fees are: spayed female/neutered male $10.00 and unspayed female/unneutered male $20.00.  Any senior 70 years of age and older can license their dog at no charge. 
Read more

Celtics and Encore

Encore Boston Harbor Designated as the “Official Resort and Casino” of the Boston Celtics 

The sports partnership will include co-branded promotions, Celtics-related events at Encore, and a complimentary pre/post-game shuttle service between TD Garden and the resort


EVERETT, MA (March 11, 2022) — Encore Boston Harbor today announced a multi-year partnership and designation as the “Official Resort and Casino” of the 17-time NBA champions, the Boston Celtics.  

Recognized for creating and celebrating winners within their respective fields, the partnership amplifies the synergies and neighborly comradery between Encore Boston Harbor and the Celtics and will offer additional entertainment opportunities for Encore guests and sports fans alike. 

“We are extremely proud to partner with Boston’s beloved Celtics,” said Jenny Holaday, president of Encore Boston Harbor. “With the TD Garden less than three miles from our resort, we are thrilled to have the opportunity to offer a variety of exciting co-branded experiences for our guests and Celtics fans throughout the season and beyond.”

Under the new partnership, the organizations will jointly participate in marketing and co-branded program elements including:

•    Encore Boston Harbor’s designation as the “Official Resort and Casino” of the Boston Celtics
•    Encore Boston Harbor-sponsored giveaways during Celtics home games
•    Team-related events held at Encore Boston Harbor including a Celtics 75th Anniversary Celebration, annual Boston Celtics Shamrock Foundation Gala, and Celtics watch parties 
•    Complimentary shuttle service to and from Encore Boston Harbor and TD Garden before and after every Celtics home game
•    Dedicated Boston Celtics landing page on the Encore Boston Harbor website including special discounts, perks and information for Celtics fans, 

“Encore Boston Harbor is a world class resort and casino, and a leader in providing high-end hospitality experiences for their guests,” said Ted Dalton, Boston Celtics Senior Vice President of Partnerships and Business Development. “We look forward to collaborating with them and providing special opportunities that Celtics fans and resort guests will enjoy.”

Additionally, Encore Boston Harbor will be hosting a special Celtics 75th Anniversary Weekend from March 11 to March 13 to kick-off the new partnership. The anniversary weekend will feature Celtics memorabilia, including the original Boston Garden Celtics retired number banners alongside a commemorative, thematic floral display in the resort’s Garden Lobby. Encore Boston Harbor’s shuttle service to and from TD Garden will also be available for extended hours after the Celtics game on Sunday, March 13 so guests can enjoy the post-game banner raising ceremony honoring former Celtics player Kevin Garnett. 

About Encore Boston Harbor

More Braga Repairs

MassDOT Advisory: Fall River and Somerset

Daytime Bridge Maintenance Operations on the Braga Bridge

Work will begin on Monday, March 14, and will be conducted weekly from Monday through Friday during daytime hours from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Work will require temporary right lane closures on I-195 and is anticipated to be completed in three weeks

FALL RIVER/SOMERSET - The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) is announcing it will be conducting bridge maintenance operations on the Braga Bridge carrying I-195 over the Taunton River in Fall River and Somerset. The work is expected to begin on Monday, March 14, and will be conducted weekly from Monday through Friday during daytime hours from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.  The work is anticipated to be completed in three weeks. 

The work will require temporary right lane closures on I-195 eastbound and westbound for the entire length of the bridge as follows:

•    The right lane on I-195 eastbound will be temporarily closed during the first week of work which is anticipated to begin on Monday, March 14. 

•    The right lane on I-195 westbound will be temporarily closed during the second week of work which is anticipated to begin on Monday, March 21.

•    Additional closures may be in place during the third week of work as needed.

CDC Lifting Mask Mandate in Transportation

According to NBC 10, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is developing guidance that will ease the nationwide mask mandate for public transit next month, according to a U.S. official, but the existing face covering requirement will be extended through April 18. The requirement, which is enforced by the Transportation Security Administration, had been set to expire on March 18, but was extended by a month to allow the Public Health Agency time to develop new, more targeted policies. The requirement extends to planes, buses, trains and  transit hubs.


The CDC is developing a "revised policy framework" for when masks should be required on transit systems based on its newly released "COVID-19 community levels" metric.

New Baseball CBA

Major League Baseball and the MLB Players Association reached an agreement on a new collective bargaining agreement on Thursday, paving the way for the 2022 regular season to begin on April 7.

After the MLBPA approved the deal by a 26-12 vote, the owners ratified it Thursday night with a unanimous 30-0 vote, officially bringing the three-month lockout to a close.  

“I am genuinely thrilled to be able to say that Major League Baseball is back and we're going to play 162 games,” Commissioner Rob Manfred said. “I do want to start by apologizing to our fans. I know that the last few months have been difficult. There's a lot of uncertainty, at a point in time when there's a lot of uncertainty in the world. [It’s] sort of the way the process of collective bargaining works sometimes, but I do apologize for it.  

“One of the good things about collective bargaining is that it gives our players an opportunity to have input on what their workplace and the game is going to look like going forward. And they took full opportunity to provide that input during these negotiations. Our players are great, great athletes. I respect them. And I respect the input that we received from them during this process. And we really did learn a lot."

The mandatory Spring Training report date for all clubs is Sunday. Exhibition games will begin on March 17 or 18.

The deal came to fruition a day after MLB postponed Opening Day until April 14 in the absence of a new agreement and announced that each team’s first four series were removed from the schedule. However, as part of this agreement, a full 162-game schedule will be played, and the four series that were previously removed from the calendar will be rescheduled.

The new five-year CBA includes increased minimum salaries, a new pre-arbitration bonus pool to reward the top young players in the game, a raise in competitive balance tax thresholds, the introduction of a universal designated hitter, the widest-ranging Draft lottery in pro sports, a system to prevent alleged service-time manipulation and limits on the number of times a player can be optioned in a season to address concerns regarding “roster churn.”

The deal also includes an expanded 12-team postseason format, bringing playoff baseball to two additional markets each year.

As part of the agreement, a Joint Competition Committee will be formed comprised of four active players, six members appointed by MLB and one umpire. Beginning in 2023, the committee will be tasked with adopting changes to playing rules such as a pitch clock, base size, defensive positioning and automatic ball/strike zone.

Under the previous agreement, MLB had the right to unilaterally implement rule changes with a one-year notice, but the new system will allow the game to improve in a more timely fashion thanks to the collaboration between the league and players.

Manfred reached out to MLBPA executive director Tony Clark after the union voted in favor of the deal.  

“I told him that I thought we had a great opportunity for the game in front of us and told him that I hope to work with him on things that are new in the agreement, like the effort to get to the international draft,” Manfred said. “More generally, on seizing the opportunity that I think is in front of us.”

With the CBA finalized, teams around the league will now turn their attention to completing their offseason business, as more than 200 players remain on the free-agent market, including notable names such as Carlos Correa, Freddie Freeman, Kris Bryant and Trevor Story.

Commissioner Manfred's Full Presser
Mar 10, 2022 · 14:41
Commissioner Manfred's Full Presser
Here are some of the details of the agreement between MLB and the MLBPA:

Minimum salary

2022: $700,000
2023: $720,000
2024: $740,000
2025: $760,000
2026: $780,000

• The first-year increase is the largest single-year increase in history, nearly five times larger than the $27,500 increase in the first year of the prior CBA. It also represents a larger increase than the total from the past 10 years.

Competitive Balance Tax threshold

2022: $230 million
2023: $233 million
2024: $237 million
2025: $241 million
2026: $244 million

• The $20 million increase from 2021 to '22 is nearly twice as large as the biggest previous first-year increase.

• A fourth tax level has been added at $60 million above the base threshold to address runaway spending.

Pre-arbitration bonus pool

• $50 million (to be distributed to the top 100 players based on awards and statistical performance).

• MLB and the MLBPA will jointly develop a statistical method to allocate the funds.

• Under this system, NL Cy Young Award winner Corbin Burnes would have seen his salary jump from $608,000 to $4.2 million last season, while Rookie of the Year winners Randy Arozarena and Jonathan India would have seen their respective salaries more than triple in 2021.

Draft lottery

• Top 6 selections will be awarded via lottery.

• Odds would be based on the reverse order of winning percentage, with the bottom three clubs each at 16.5%.

• The 18 non-postseason clubs would be eligible, though revenue sharing payees would be ineligible to receive lottery selections in three consecutive years, while non-payees would be ineligible to receive lottery selections in consecutive years.

International Draft

• In exchange for agreeing to an International Draft by July 25, 2022, MLB will eliminate the qualifying offer system (direct Draft-pick compensation) for free agents.

• International Draft would be 20 rounds (600-plus selections), increasing the total compensation earned by amateurs by more than $20 million annually.

• Signing bonuses would be guaranteed for drafted players.

• Clubs who select players from growth countries (countries with less than 0.5% of signings in the previous three signing periods) will receive additional selections to incentivize scouting and signing in emerging markets.

Rules changes

Beginning in 2023, a committee comprised of four active players, six members appointed by MLB and one umpire, will be tasked with adopting changes to playing rules such as a pitch clock, base size, defensive positioning and automatic ball/strike zone.

Other details

• Contracts for arbitration-eligible players will be guaranteed.

• Top prospects who finish 1st or 2nd in the Rookie of the Year voting will receive a full year of service.

• Clubs promoting top prospects to Opening Day rosters will be eligible to receive Draft picks if the player finishes in the Top 3 in the Rookie of the Year voting or Top 5 in MVP/Cy Young voting.

• Expanded postseason: 12 teams, with the top two division winners receiving a bye.

• Universal designated hitter.

• Players may only be optioned five times per season.

The Latest on Gasoline Information from AAA

AAA: $4 Gas the Tipping Point for Most Americans  

New survey finds 59% of Americans will make lifestyle changes as gas reaches record highs 

New survey data from AAA finds that two-thirds of Americans felt gas prices were too expensive just a few weeks ago at $3.53 per gallon


. Now with the national average at an all-time high of over $4, Americans may have reached a tipping point. Over half (59%) said they would make changes to their driving habits or lifestyle if the cost of gas rose to $4 per gallon. If gas were to reach $5.00, which it has in the Western part of the country, three-quarters said they would need to adjust their lifestyle to offset the spike at the pump.

Among Americans who said they would make changes in response to higher gas prices, a majority (80%) said they would opt to drive less, with some differences among age groups:

•    18 to 34 year-olds are almost three times as likely as those 35 and over to consider carpooling (29% vs 11%), which would likely involve major changes to their daily travel plans.

•    Those 35 and over are more likely to favor combining tips and errands (68% vs 52%) and to reduce shopping or dining out (53% vs. 43%).

While many Americans may adapt their daily habits to make up for higher gas prices, it likely won’t have as much of an impact on summer travel. AAA’s survey found that 52% of Americans have plans to take a vacation this summer. Of those, 42% said they would not consider changing their travel plans regardless of the price of gas.  


Ripple Effects of Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine

Since the New Year, the national average has continued a steady climb due to strained supply and increased demand. But Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in late February caused oil prices to spike further and in the 14 days since the conflict began, the national average has risen $0.70 (as of 3/9/2022). These are numbers not seen at the pump since the financial crisis in 2008, the highest on record until this week (note: AAA historic data is not adjusted for inflation). 

While the conflict continues on the far side of the globe, consumers will likely not see relief any time soon. AAA offers the following advice to help drivers ease some of the pain they’re feeling at the pump:

•    Keep your vehicle in top shape with routine inspections and in between, make sure your tires are properly inflated. Underinflated tires are a drag on fuel economy.
•    Map your route before you go to minimize unnecessary turnarounds and backtracking. Avoid peak traffic times and if possible go to "one-stop shops” where you can do multiple tasks (banking, shopping, etc.).
•    Fuel economy peaks at around 50 mph on most cars, then drops off as speeds increase. Reducing highway speeds by 5 to 10 mph can increase fuel economy by as much as 14%.
•    A car engine consumes one quarter to one-half gallon of fuel per hour when idling, but a warm engine only takes around 10 seconds worth of fuel to restart. Where safe to do so, shut off your engine if you will be stopped for more than a minute.
•    Use "fast pass" or “express” toll lanes to avoid unnecessary stops or slowdowns on the highway.
•    Only use premium gas in vehicles that recommend or require it. Paying for premium gas for a vehicle that takes regular is a waste of money and is of no benefit to the vehicle. 
•    To find the best gas price in your area, use the AAA Mobile App – Android I iPhone.

AAA Northeast is a not-for-profit auto club with 70 offices in Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Jersey, New Hampshire and New York, providing more than 6 million local AAA members with travel, insurance, finance, and auto-related services.

Use our online request system for easy and convenient roadside service: or through the AAA app

A New Bedford Conviction

A 40-year-old New Bedford narcotics trafficker was sentenced to serve up to five-and-a-half years in state prison, Bristol County District Attorney Thomas M. Quinn III announced.

Kenneth Cosgrave pleaded guilty in Fall River Superior Court to indictments charging him with Trafficking in Fentanyl and Possession with Intent to Distribute Cocaine.

On May 15, 2020 New Bedford Police were conducting a street level narcotics investigations on County Street when they observed the defendant carrying sandwich bags to a vehicle.  Police followed the vehicle to an address on Viall Street known by investigators as a home where large amounts of narcotics have been seized during the previous year.  Police observed an individual exit the home and get into the vehicle for about two minutes before going back inside the house with sandwich bags.  Police stopped the vehicle a few minutes later, where they found 21 bags of Fentanyl and a single bag of crack cocaine in the defendant’s pockets.  A subsequent search of the vehicle yielded a box of sandwich bags and a digital scale.  

The three-and-a-half to five-and-a-half year state prison sentence was imposed by Judge Gregg Pasquale and the case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney James Powderly. 

“I am pleased the defendant was held accountable for trafficking Fentanyl, which continues to be a scourge on our communities,” District Attorney Quinn said.  

A New COVID-19 Calculation

Department of Public Health Updates COVID-19 Death Definition 

Revised data capture more accurately the acute impact of COVID in the Commonwealth

BOSTON (March 10, 2022) – Beginning Monday, March 14, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) will update the criteria used for identifying COVID-19 deaths to align with guidance from the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists.  Currently, the COVID death definition includes anyone who has COVID listed as a cause of death on their death certificate, and any individual who has had a COVID-19 diagnosis within 60 days but does not have COVID listed as a cause of death on their death certificate. The updated definition reduces this timeframe from 60 days to 30 days for individuals without a COVID diagnosis on their death certificate.

The revision follows the recommendation of the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE), in collaboration with the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), to create a standardized approach for states to use for counting COVID-19 deaths. Several other states are adopting this definition. 

Massachusetts has applied this new definition retroactively to the start of the pandemic in March 2020. As a result, 4,081 deaths in Massachusetts that were previously counted as associated with COVID will be removed. In addition, approximately 400 deaths not previously counted but identified through a manual process of matching death certificates with medical records will be added to the COVID-19 death count. The state’s overall COVID death count, therefore, will decline by 3,700. 

“We are adopting the new definition because we support the need to standardize the way COVID-19-associated deaths are counted,” said DPH State Epidemiologist Dr. Catherine Brown. “Prior to the CSTE definition, states did not have a nationally recommended definition for COVID-19 deaths and, as such, have been using a variety of processes and definitions to count their deaths. In Massachusetts, our definition has consistently been broader than most other states. After a deep dive into our data and reviewing thousands of death certificates we recognize that this updated definition gives us a truer picture of mortality associated with COVID-19.”

“It is important to understand that we cannot identify all COVID-19 deaths with 100 percent accuracy,” said Nicolas Menzies, Associate Professor of Global Health at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. “The revised definition for COVID-19 deaths is a reasonable balance between sensitivity and specificity and will make it easier to compare Massachusetts death data with data from other jurisdictions.”

“Updating this important metric is a necessary step to help us better gauge the current severity of the pandemic and its impact on our health system and society as a whole,” said Dr. Helen Boucher, Interim Dean of Tufts University School of Medicine, Chief Academic Officer at Tufts Medicine and infectious disease physician at Tufts Medical Center and member of the Governor’s Medical Advisory Board. “The ability to be nimble and quickly adapt to changing circumstances demonstrates Massachusetts’ continued leadership in COVID-19 data reporting and analysis.”

Early in the pandemic, and absent clear national guidance, DPH matched COVID-19 surveillance case information with death certificates to identify deaths in people who tested positive for the virus but did not have COVID listed as a cause of death. To avoid the possibility of missing any COVID-associated death, anyone who tested positive for COVID and died was counted as a COVID-associated death regardless of the length of time between their diagnosis and their death or whether COVID was listed as the cause on their death certificate. This approach was overly broad and led to an overcounting of COVID-19-associated deaths.

Beginning in April 2021, based on the growing knowledge about COVID-19 and an analysis of deaths in Massachusetts up to that point, DPH updated the way it counted deaths. COVID-19-associated deaths still included anyone with COVID-19 listed as a cause of death on the death certificate but DPH also applied a 60-day timeframe from diagnosis to death for anyone diagnosed with COVID-19 but who did not have COVID-19 on the death certificate. 

This latest update further reduces the timeframe between diagnosis and death from 60 days to 30 days for individuals without COVID listed on the death certificate. The new definition will be reflected in the COVID-19 interactive dashboard data on Monday, March 14.

Beginning Monday, all calculations involving deaths posted in the COVID-19 dashboard and the raw data file will contain the updated data. Previous raw data files will still be available on the website and will not be updated.

Deaths in long-term care facilities (LTCF) will continue to be reported directly from those facilities, but the updated definition will align surveillance deaths more closely with the LTCF-reported counts.

Several new data points and some changes in functionality and visualizations are also being added to the COVID-19 dashboard, beginning Monday. No data are being eliminated and the changes are designed to enhance the interactive experience for dashboard users and to ensure compliance with Americans with Disabilities Act requirements.

Bristol Correctional Officers Graduation

DARTMOUTH – What do the 2004 Boston Red Sox, 2016 New England Patriots and the Bristol County Sheriff’s Office all have in common?

They all performed best with their backs against the wall.

That was the message Bristol County Sheriff Thomas M. Hodgson implored on the graduates of the 49th Corrections Officer Academy during a ceremony Wednesday evening, comparing the performance of Bristol corrections officers during the pandemic to those memorable championships by our local sports teams.

“Covid really turned our industry upside-down,” Sheriff Hodgson said. “Our officers met every challenge head-on. These corrections professionals adapted to new rules and regulations and rose to the occasion.

“The strength of our organization has always been how we adapt, deal with, and overcome, adversity,” he continued. “And this amazing team is getting better with the addition of these graduates to our award-winning corrections family.”

The new corrections officers spent the last eight weeks working on everything from policy and procedure to first aid, self-defense and officer wellness. But the most important lessons for this group are communication and teamwork.

That was on display during the graduation ceremony when the class retired a guidon, which is a special marker used throughout history in the military and law enforcement to signify unit designation. The guidon is awarded by the training staff based on the class’ teamwork and togetherness; not every class receives the honor of carrying a guidon to graduation like this class did.

“Over the last eight weeks, we’ve learned many skills that will stay with us forever,” said class Valedictorian Vicente Perez, who finished with a 94.76 grade average. “Our brotherhood has grown exponentially since that first day.”

The new Bristol County Corrections Officers are Anthony Andrade, Elson Fernandes, Brandon Golda, Megan Julien, Ruben Lassalle, Brooks Mendard, Dylan Vultao and Perez.

Lt. Robert Matos and the training staff of Sgt. Amanda Custodio and Corrections Officers Curtis Mateus and Stephen Aranda led the training academy.

“Remember as you go through your career to find goals and strive to meet them,” Lt. Matos said. “It has been a long eight weeks and you should be proud of all you’ve accomplished.”

There are some spots open in the next Corrections Officer Academy, which is planned for the summer. Anyone interested in starting their law enforcement career with the Bristol County Sheriff’s Office can find more information, and a downloadable application, at Anyone with questions can contact Caitlin DeMelo in human resources at 508-995-6400 ext. 2344 or via email at

Providence Wins

The Providence Friars, as Regular Season Basketball Champions of the Big East, survived a scare at Madison Square Garden in New  York this afternoon, beating the #9 seed Butler in the Big East Post Season Tournament this afternoon, using a 9-2 run in the final 3 minutes of the game to win 65-61.


Providence advances to a Friday Semi Final  game versus either Marquette or Creighton.

TF Green Airport's Newest Destinations

According to NBC 10 in Providence, the Rhode Island Airport Corporation said yesterday that Frontier Airlines will add two new routes from Rhode Island TF Green International Airport. The seasonal routes will operate to Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina, and Denver beginning in late April. Frontier operates eight nonstop routes from TF Green, including service from Atlanta to Cancun and Mexico

New Bedford Man Sentenced

A 37-year-old New Bedford man who violently attacked his live-in girlfriend with a knife, causing near-fatal injuries, was sentence to serve nine to 12 years in prison last week in Fall River Superior Court, Bristol County District Attorney Thomas M. Quinn III announced. 

Auguste Louis was convicted of Armed Assault with Intent to Murder, Aggravated Assault and Battery with a dangerous weapon and Assault and Battery on a Family or Household Member  on March 3 by Judge Gregg Pasquale after an 8-day Bench Trial. 

On November 13, 2016 the defendant and victim were living together in New Bedford.  They shared one child in common, but both had other children from other prior relationships.  The defendant started an argument with  the victim regarding her child stepping on his child's toy.  The argument turned violent when he stabbed her seven times.  He carved her face with a knife several times, stating, “sorry I am going to jail” and “I love you.”  After slicing her face several times, the defendant then stabbed her multiple times in the body area.  A neighbor who heard the commotion helped to stop the bleeding and called 911.  An ambulance arrived and attempted to transport her directly to RI Hospital, but had to re-route to St. Luke’s due to the amount of blood that she was losing.  After initial treatment to stabilize the victim, she was then transported by med-flight to RI Hospital.  She suffered serious injuries from the stab wounds including a collapsed lung that left her on a ventilator for several days and has multiple scars on her face, neck and torso.  

After the conviction, Assistant District Attorney Courtney Cahill argued for an 18 to 20 year state prison term due to the depravity of the attack and the seriousness of the victim’s injuries. The defense, however, requested a lenient sentence of five to seven years in state prison.

Judge Pasquale eventually sentenced the defendant to nine to 12 years in prison, to be followed by four years of supervised probation.  The probationary term includes the use of a GPS monitoring device for the first year. 

“This was a vicious assault that very easily could have killed the victim.  I commend the victim for having the courage to testify against the defendant.  He clearly is a danger to her and should be off the street for as long as possible,” District Attorney Quinn said. 

Art Exhibit at UMass Dartmouth


The Ferreira-Mendes Portuguese-American Archives will host the traveling exhibit “Azores – USA: A Journey into the Future”.  The exhibit will remain open until 31 March 2022.  The Ferreira-Mendes Portuguese-American Archives is open to the public.  Its hours of operation are Monday through Friday, 9:30 AM to 5 PM.  Guests should use Parking Lot 13.  

The beautiful eight-panel exhibit offers a synthesis of the history of the connections between the Azores and the United States of America.  The first panel sets the stage in 1750 and then takes the viewer on a journey of historical discovery to the present day.  Archivist Sonia Pacheco has created a complementary exhibit within the Ferreira-Mendes Portuguese American Archives that is not to be missed.  Faculty-Director, Dr. Paula Noversa stated, “We are proud to host this exhibit highlighting the many and nuanced connections between the Azores and the United States.  I hope that faculty, students, staff and the community at large will take a moment to visit the Archives and view this important exhibit.

For further information, contact 508-999-8695 or email

Wentz to Washington

This first appeared on

The Washington Commanders searched high and low and finally found their new starting quarterback.

Washington has agreed to acquire quarterback Carson Wentz in a trade with the Indianapolis Colts, NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported Wednesday. The trade cannot be finalized until the new league year begins March 16.

The pending deal involves a 2022 third-round pick and next year's third-rounder that can convert to a second-rounder based on incentives. NFL Network's Mike Garafolo added the trade also includes a swap of 2022 second-round draft picks. The Colts now hold the No. 42 overall pick, while the Commanders have pick no. 47.

ESPN first reported the news.

Wentz spent just one season in Indy after the Colts shipped a conditional second-round pick, which turned into a first-rounder, and a third-round selection to the Philadelphia Eagles last offseason.

Colts head coach Frank Reich believed he could reform Wentz into the MVP candidate we briefly saw in 2017 under Reich's tutelage as an Eagles assistant. The QB showed some flashes but struggled for long stretches last season. Wentz cratered down the stretch, throwing for fewer than 300 yards in his final five games -- four of which were under 190 yards passing. In a Week 15 win over New England, the Colts escaped while Wentz threw for a measly 57 yards. The Colts' offense played around the QB, not led by him.

In Week 18, Wentz threw a horrific INT and struggled against the league-worst Jacksonville Jaguars as the Colts missed the postseason.

After Indy missed the postseason, an irate owner Jim Irsay suggested significant changes would come. After bringing back most of the coaching staff and front office, the QB was the only leg left to swap out.

Now the Colts become the latest team in need of a signal-caller. Rapoport noted Wednesday that Indy is expected to be in the mix for Jimmy Garoppolo?, but any deal for the 49ers QB isn't expected until closer to the draft, given that he underwent shoulder surgery this week.

While Wentz didn't shine in Indy, the Colts found a desperate taker in Washington.

As head coach Ron Rivera noted during the NFL Scouting Combine, the Commanders made calls on every potential quarterback. In the end, they ended up with Wentz. It isn't the splash trade for Russell Wilson that Washington fans had hoped for, but in terms of running an offense, Wentz can be an upgrade on Taylor Heinicke?.

Wentz now returns to the NFC East where he'll face the Eagles twice this season after a one-year sojourn from the division.

The quarterback is under contract for the next three years, but there is no guaranteed salary beyond 2022. For Washington, they can test-drive Wentz for a year. If it works out, the Commanders have a starting quarterback at a solid price. If not, they can cut bait next offseason and return to the drawing board.

More Sox Games Lost

Commissioner of Baseball Robert D. Manfred, Jr. issued the following statement today:

“In a last-ditch effort to preserve a 162-game season, this week we have made good-faith proposals that address the specific concerns voiced by the MLBPA and would have allowed the players to return to the field immediately.


The Clubs went to extraordinary lengths to meet the substantial demands of the MLBPA. On the key economic issues that have posed stumbling blocks, the Clubs proposed ways to bridge gaps to preserve a full schedule. Regrettably, after our second late-night bargaining session in a week, we remain without a deal.


“Because of the logistical realities of the calendar, another two series are being removed from the schedule, meaning that Opening Day is postponed until April 14th. We worked hard to reach an agreement and offered a fair deal with significant improvements for the players and our fans.


I am saddened by this situation’s continued impact on our game and all those who are a part of it, especially our loyal fans.


“We have the utmost respect for our players and hope they will ultimately choose to accept the fair agreement they have been offered.”

Bryant University Makes History

While Providence College clinched their rights to dance in March, Bryant University is the latest local basketball program to join. Bryant University set the Division I program record for wins this season and clinched its first NCAA tournament berth since beginning the transition from Division II in 2008.


Bryant guard Peter Kiss had 34 points and a season-high five steals, leading the top-seeded Bulldogs to a 70-43 win over Wagner. Last night for the first Northeast Conference tournament championship in program history. Kiss is the nation's leading scorer with almost 25 points per game.


According to CBS 12 in Providence, a fight among fans of both teams broke out in the stands and the game with 4:37 left was paused for nearly 30 minutes as order was restored.

Stabbing in NB

According to CBS 12 in Providence, officials are investigating after one person was stabbed late last night in New Bedford. Police responded to the scene near Linden and County Streets around 9:30 PM. The victim's injuries do not appear to be life-threatening.


It's unclear at this time what led up to the stabbing or if any arrests have been made.

SOTC Fall River

MARCH 9, 2022, 5:30PM

Good evening. Honorable members of the council, school committee, members of our
legislative delegation, it is an honor to be with you as I deliver the 2022 State of the City

Thank you to the residents who are joining us here today, or tuning in from home, as we
celebrate an important day for Fall River.

This is the third time I have delivered my State of the City Address. Each one has been
very different. My first address, planned for March 13th, 2020, was canceled due to the
beginning of the pandemic. I recorded that speech in November, in my office, without

For my second State of the City address, last March, I was able to be in the Council
Chambers but, still, no residents were present.

The timing of this speech feels more hopeful. While I learned a long time ago to never
be too optimistic or speak too soon, it seems as though we are slowly returning to

I am here in a moment of hope, as we look towards the future. I am here to tell you that
despite all we have endured as a community, Fall River has never stopped growing and
working towards its very full potential.

The last two years have shown the power of what can be accomplished when we work

I began my time in office over 2 years ago. I have been fortunate to work with a team
who show up, work hard and stay focused on improving Fall River. Some of those
people are in the room with me today. I’d like to recognize our City Council, our School
Committee, our state delegation- Senator Michael Rodrigues and Representatives
Carole Fiola, Alan Silvia and Paul Schmid- and, of course, our City employees.

While they are not here today, I must thank our advocates in WashingtonRepresentatives Auchincloss and Keating and Senators Warren and Markey.

In the last year we have also said farewell to some key members of our team and
welcomed in a new group of leaders. We have two new Chiefs- Fire Chief Roger St
Martin and Interim Police Chief Paul Gauvin. We have brought on a new Superintendent
who has served the Fall River Schools for years- Maria Pontes. We have recently
brought in multiple new Department Heads and filled several vacancies. I welcome City
Administrator Seth Aiken, City Planner Kaitlin Young, City Engineer Dan Aguiar and
head of Human Resources Nick Macolini to their new roles.

When you combine these new faces and our existing leadership, there is a renewed
energy, vision and focus in City government that is exciting and full of promise.
On a personal note, I want to thank all my supporters, my family and of course- my wife
Judi- for all her love and support. She is my partner and I love her.

It takes all levels of government to get things done. The waterfront is the perfect
example of public and private investment working in tandem. Progress on the waterfront
is being made thanks to the collaboration of municipal, state and federal government
agencies, along with a number of private developers.

In several years, Fall River’s waterfront area will look and feel very different, and we are
confident that it will become a major economic engine for our City. I must thank the
Baker-Polito administration, who have been tremendous supporters of many of our
waterfront revitalization projects.

Progress is well underway with the South Coast Rail, just drive down Davol St to watch
the construction of the Depot and the layover station at Weaver’s Cove. As of now,
construction is on pace with its originally scheduled start date. By the end of 2023, we
will begin to see trains to Boston coming in and out of our station.

We will soon see the elimination of the elevated route 79 highway along Davol St. This
project will improve pedestrian and vehicle access to the existing waterfront attractions
while creating a new waterfront boulevard. This project will open up 1.1 million square
feet- for the development of market rate housing, retail, office and restaurants. It will be
advertised for bid early this Fall, construction will begin in 2023 and be completed in late
2025 or early 2026.

Our RDA has also been hard at work overseeing the construction of the City Pier.
Construction on the Pier is well under way, and it will be a fantastic green space for
sunset concerts, food truck festivals and family recreation. The Pier is set to open late
this summer.

These investments are being reflected in the private sector. Properties along Davol St
are being transformed into mixed use housing and retail developments. The Route 79
project alone is expected to bring in over $1 billion of investment. It is hard not to get
excited about the future of our waterfront.

My goal moving into this next term is to continue the development of the
waterfront and to improve parking access, which is critical to the area’s growth.
We are in the early stages of a plan to relocate the State’s salt sheds from under the
Braga bridge to the US Bedding facility (formerly Sam’s Club) on Brayton Ave. I must
thank Jake Auchincloss for his support on this, as he’s been advocating for funding for
this project in DC.

Our waterfront is not only a magnet for tourism and new development, it is also soon to
be the site of a bustling new industry in Fall River. In December, Mayflower Wind was
awarded a 400 megawatt power purchase agreement by the Commonwealth of
Massachusetts, allowing them to build an Operations & Maintenance Base at the former
Borden– Remington Complex. With this comes tremendous investment in training,
education and long-term job growth in a new economic sector.

While many think that Fall River has an industrial PAST, we also have a strong
industrial PRESENT and future. Industrial Park is near capacity, hosting a well-rounded
group of tenants ranging from textile manufacturing to pharmaceutical development to
cold storage for seafood.

Covid changed the way people purchase goods. More online shopping means more
distribution facilities. The demand for industrial property has dramatically increased,
leaving our remaining parcels in the technology park in high demand. We are taking
advantage of this unique moment in time and can expect several exciting, new tenants
in the technology park in the coming years– bringing more high paying jobs with them.
On a smaller scale, exciting franchises, entrepreneurs and private investors are
choosing Fall River. 

We are working with a developer to transform the vacant Bank St
armory into an events center. After sitting unoccupied for 23 years, the former BCC
building on Durfee St will soon be rebranded as the Creative Class building- a mixed
use project with both market rate housing and affordable artists lofts.

developments can be found along South Main St, Fourth St and 3rd Street, including
the Women’s Garment Workers Union building right across the street from us today.

These are just a few examples of a wide scale revitalization that is happening in our
downtown, where historic, long-abandoned properties are being redeveloped for
mixed-use housing and retail. This will bring in a much needed influx of new and old
residents with more spending power- which is key to the strength of our small
businesses. In the coming years, residents should expect new life being breathed into
our Main St and surrounding areas.

Residents and investors alike are transforming our housing stock- from projects as
small as single family homes to renovations of our largest mills. Since my time in office
began, the City has generated well over $1 million in revenue from building permits–
and our inventory of abandoned properties has been significantly reduced.

This is all symbolic of one major fact- Fall River is poised for a great economic future. I
have to thank the amazing group of local business leaders and developers who are
behind many of these projects. As mayor, I will continue to do all I can to bring new
and existing business owners and investors to the table so that we can continue
this momentum. Another goal of ours is to translate more of this success into the
Flint and Pleasant Street area. As we know, the Pleasant Street corridor struggles
with a high number of vacant and blighted storefronts.

Under the guidance of the Redevelopment Authority, we recently began work on
an Urban Renewal Plan for the Flint, which will allow us to make consistent,
long-term plans. We began this process last month by assembling a group of
stakeholders including neighborhood leaders, area business owners, local
developers and City officials. We are working with Emily Ennis, who worked with
the City on our two previous Urban Renewal Plans, and her team of consultants
to identify strategies to stabilize and improve the neighborhood.

Whether it is downtown, the Flint or the waterfront, we are constantly working as
a City to make sure that small business owners, developers and entrepreneurs
know we are “Open for Business”.
Part of our growth and economic devel
opment means making major infrastructure
improvements that have been put off for far too long.

We have made huge investments into streets and sidewalks and will continue to do so.
Major roadways like Robeson, President Ave, Stafford Road and Broadway have been
transformed. However, we have a long way to go. Presentable streets, free of litter
and potholes, have been and will continue to be a top priority.

We will be repairing a number of streets through a major Water Department
project that we funded through ARPA. Through an initial investment of over $8
million, the Water Department will replace 17,000 ft of water main and dozens of
lead services, before reconstructing the affected streets and sidewalks.

In all corners of Fall River, our parks and recreational areas have seen massive
improvements. We have repaired sidewalks at North and Kennedy. New playgrounds
have been opened at Desmarais Park and the Paul Poulos Park on Aetna St.
Through grant funding, we are beginning renovations to the Kathy Assad Tot lot off
Pleasant St and making major repairs to North Park. Plans are underway to repair the
tennis courts at Kennedy Park, and my goal is to complete other projects at
Kennedy- including a splash pad and renovations to the skating rink, which we
brought back to life during the coldest days of this winter. Residents of all ages
deserve safe, respectable spaces where they can get active and enjoy

Today, I am pleased to announce two more allocations from our ARPA Advisory
Panel that will benefit our parks. First, we will be dedicating $60,000 over the next
two years to begin the Kennedy Park Renovation Project. Second, we will be
allocating $44,000 to carry out renovations to the Skate parks at Lafayette, Abbot
Court and North Park. These facilities are overdue for repair and we are excited to
make them usable to residents again.

Of course, infrastructure and economic development mean nothing if our residents'
needs are not met. That is why I am proud to work with our outstanding Public Safety
team, including Fire Chief Roger St Martin and Acting Police Chief Paul Gauvin, to
make continued investments into our emergency services. Despite national trends of
staffing shortages and high crime rates, Fall River has seen a decrease in many areas
of crime. I will continue to do all I can to ensure our first responders have the tools
required to meet our community’s needs. Specifically, we plan to soon boost our
inventory of fire trucks with new pieces through grant funding, and we will
continue to strategize the use of ARPA funds to invest in our Police, Fire and
Emergency Services departments.

We have worked with Police, Fire and EMS and a number of service providers to take a
well-rounded approach to addiction and homelessness. We have a full-time street
outreach worker embedded in the Police Department, and all Fire stations are “Safe
Stations”, where those battling addiction can go to get the help they need.

Going into this next term, as we grapple with the impact of the pandemic on
mental health, addiction and homelessness, we will continue to work together as
a community and pursue innovative solutions. Fall River is also now leading this
fight on a national scale through a Federal “SAMSHA” grant. This $2 Million grant has
allowed us to expand the work of our outreach workers while providing crucial training
on mental health and narcan use to Police, Fire and EMS in Fall River and surrounding
communities. We will soon have 3 more outreach workers in the Police Department to
address these issues.

Another priority of mine has been, and will continue to be, expanding resources for our
veteran population. Over the last two years, we have made substantial investments in
housing and job training programs for veterans. We must continue to support our
veteran community. One of the highlights of my first term was the dedication of the
Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall. I must commend the Committee who made the park
and wall come to life. This project was the perfect example of a collaborative effort that
brought something truly remarkable to Fall River.

Another key to strengthening our community has been working with a diverse group of
citizens and organizations to bring positive events and activities back to our City. I am
so proud of how the community came together in 2021 to provide residents with
accessible events and programs- including free youth sports leagues, drive-in movies
and live music in our parks. I look forward to bringing these events back, expanding
them, adding new ones and finding other ways to improve quality of life in our
neighborhoods. We recently purchased a “Book Mobile”, a mobile library which
will bring books and programming directly to senior living facilities,
neighborhood parks and more.

A few minutes ago, I mentioned two new ARPA allocations related to the parks.
Last week we also approved another ARPA project related to recreation and
support for our youth.

We will be investing in a pilot program to place a social worker at the Fall River
Boys & Girls Club to work with children and their families, and to help them
access the support and services they need. As our youth emerge from the
pandemic, it is more important than ever to have positive outlets in our

Of course, that work is done first in our schools. I am proud of the Fall River Public
Schools community for their response to the pandemic. Their work expanded from just
teaching to also ensuring that students had the resources they needed to succeed, like

computers, wifi or even meals. I want to take a moment to thank the City’s educators for
all they have done for our students and families.

We began this school year on a high note, with the opening of the new, state of the art
Durfee. Now, our focus must be on addressing the educational and
social-emotional needs of our students after a challenging few years. We must
continue our focus on strengthening and standardizing our curriculum so that it
matches the high quality of our buildings and facilities.

Additional funding through the Student opportunity Act gives us an
unprecedented opportunity to invest in more counselors, teachers, support staff
and resources for our students. Beyond Fall River Public Schools,

 Diman is also
taking the first steps to pursue a new facility to better prepare our vocational

I am honored to serve Fall River at this truly pivotal time in our history. We now have a
once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to address major quality of life issues through ARPA
funding. Upon learning of the funding, we assembled an advisory panel made up of
community members, business leaders, non-profits and City officials. We held public
forums, where residents provided thoughtful input on how to utilize ARPA money.
In late October, we announced our first round of ARPA allocations.

We invested in the massive water main replacement project that I discussed earlier. We
also allocated nearly half a million dollars to the Police Department for increased
manpower and new equipment- including 50 security cameras, 20 radar speed displays
and five new police cruisers. We also provided funding for the Fall River Holiday Parade
to mitigate their fundraising challenges and ensure that the parade, which draws many
people to the area, could continue in 2021.

A few months ago, we announced the second round of allocations.
As with the first round of funding, we made significant investments to public safety. We
are investing nearly $300,000 into a new ambulance for our EMS department. Nearly
$600,000 is going to our police department for crime prevention training and equipment.
A significant piece of funding will go towards much needed computer and printer
systems within police cruisers.

Another major project will be a $4 million investment to complete the next phase of the
Alfred J Lima Queuechan Rail Trail project. This project will expand the trail, which has

become a hub for walkers, bikers and families looking for outdoor recreation. With
ARPA funding, we have the perfect opportunity to invest in one-time projects that will
benefit residents for decades to come. Another project through our Planning
Department will be a rehabilitation of the Jerry Lawton Plaza on South Main street,
which will impact downtown development and improve walkability in the area.

Last but certainly not least, we rolled out a Small Business Grant Assistance program,
providing over three and a quarter million dollars to Fall River’s small businesses
financially impacted by COVID-19. Small businesses are the backbone of our
community, and this grant program gives us another tool to help them withstand the
economic strain of the pandemic.

ARPA aside, Fall River is in a very strong financial position. As I mentioned, the pace of
investment and development in Fall River was moving quickly before the pandemic, and
it hardly slowed during it. With or without this added federal funding, we have been on
track for a solid economic future.

We currently have over $7.1 million in our stabilization fund and over $1.6 million in our
surplus revenue, or “free cash” account. Our Moodys credit rating is A3. Our enhanced
rating backed by the Commonwealth is Aa2.

We predict that revenue and credit ratings will remain at this level for the foreseeable
future. This is due to the careful planning and hard work of our finance team over the
last several years.

Looking to the future, I look forward to working closely with the City Council, and the
School Committee, to ensure that we shape a solid City budget for Fiscal Year 2023.
Our unified goal will be to craft a budget that provides residents the services they
deserve and adequately funds our public safety. As we face national trends of inflation
and shortages, it is also our obligation to keep the burden of rising costs off of our
residents as best we can— so that hard working families can continue to thrive in Fall

I will finish this speech with this final message.

Fall River still has a whole host of serious challenges, and we will continue to work hard
every single day- and often on nights or weekends- to fix them.
However, the State of the City is very, very strong. We are poised for a renaissance.
New businesses, industries and investors are choosing Fall River to put down their

roots– bringing well paying jobs that will sustain our residents for years to come. Our
streets and recreational spaces are, one by one, being improved so that we may all live
in a City we are proud of. Our recovery from decades of economic trouble and the
impact of the pandemic is happening before our very eyes. I urge you all to trust in a
bright tomorrow for Fall River and to treat others with dignity and respect.
As we go forward, I once again promise that I will continue to work hard, act out of my
deep love for this City and commit my administration to integrity and transparency. I am
truly honored to lead the City of Fall River at this historic point in time.
I look forward to another year of growth and progress in Fall River. Good night and God Bless the City of Fall River. 


More Gas Price Record Highs

Gas prices in Massachusetts overnight topped the all-time record high set yesterday. Here are the prices this morning:

                                                Today                                      Yesterday
MA Unleaded                         $4.24                                       $4.16
RI Unleaded                            $4.24                                       $4.17
CT Unleaded                          $4.35                                       $4.28
National Average                    $4.17                                       $4.06

The AAA Gas Prices <> website is your resource for up-to-date fuel price information. Search average gas prices by Regular, Plus, Premium and Diesel on National and State levels, as well as Metro areas. 

Donations for Ukraine in Seekonk

The Seekonk Fire Department will be collecting donations for the people of Ukraine beginning Wednesday, March 9th. 
A drop box labeled Donations for Ukraine will be located in the Seekonk Fire Department's apparatus bay (500 Taunton Avenue)
Deadline to drop off donations is Sunday, March 20, 2022 at 6:00PM 
Items Needed

Shoes    Baby Formula    Wet Wipes

(Men, Women, Children)    


Toothbrushes    Foil Survival Blankets
Blankets    Toothpaste    Hairbrushes
Coats    Sleeping Bags    Shampoo

Medical Supplies    Linens    Children's clothes
Toiletries    First Aid Kits    Bandages

Diapers    Towels    Durable Food
Toys    Flashlight with batteries    Deodorant

Russell Wilson to Denver

NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reported the Seahawks and Broncos agreed in principle on a trade sending quarterback Russell Wilson to Denver for a massive haul, including multiple first-round draft picks, plus additional picks and players, per sources informed of the decision.

The full package for Seattle, which also sent a fourth-round pick Denver's way: two first-rounders, two second-rounders, a fifth-rounder, quarterback ?Drew Lock?, defensive tackle ?Shelby Harris? and tight end ?Noah Fant?, per NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport.

The trade is pending a physical and Wilson waiving his no-trade clause, and it cannot be finalized until the new league year begins March 16.

The future of the nine-time Pro Bowl quarterback had been in question in Seattle for more than a year, despite Wilson insisting this offseason he wanted to remain with the Seahawks.

Now he's on the move from the NFC West to the AFC West.

Wilson represents a huge coup for Broncos general manager George Paton, who took a big swing at finally finding a solution to the most vital position in sports. Denver had been in quarterback purgatory since Peyton Manning's retirement, cycling through signal-callers without an answer.

Now they find themselves with a transformational passer.

Wilson had an up-and-down 2021 campaign. He started hot, then a finger injury caused him to miss the first weeks of his career, and he wasn't the same immediately after returning. But he caught fire again down the stretch, indicating the issues were more injury-related than a declining player.

Wilson throws the prettiest deep ball in the NFL, can extend plays, and thrives within the framework of the offense or making off-schedule throws. The Broncos have improved the offensive line in recent seasons and have the building blocks of a potent offense -- depending on what assets were shipped as part of the deal.

The Broncos currently boast wide receivers ?Jerry Jeudy?, ?Courtland Sutton?, Tim Patrick and ?K.J. Hamler?, tight end ?Albert Okwuegbunam?, and stud young running back ?Javonte Williams?. It's a loaded offense that Wilson will spearhead.

Seattle didn't plan on moving Wilson unless they got a transformation package in return. The Broncos made an offer they couldn't refuse.

Taking on Lock as part of the deal gives Seattle at least one option at quarterback, with ?Geno Smith? headed to free agency. But it leaves a massive question about the future under center. Pete Carroll wants no part of a rebuild, so where the Seahawks turn at QB will indicate how quickly they'll be able to restack the deck in the rugged NFC West.

The Broncos had a playoff-ready roster outside of the quarterback. Now they have that Super Bowl champ to compete with the likes of ?Patrick Mahomes?, ?Justin Herbert? and ?Derek Carr? in a loaded AFC West.

Breeze Airway's New Destinations

According to NBC 10, Breeze Airways announced five new destinations that travelers can fly to from Rhode Island T.F. Green International Airport in Providence. The new routes include Columbus, OH Jacksonville, FL, Richmond, VA, Savannah, GA, Los Angeles, CA.


Breeze Airways Founder and CEO David Neeleman was asked if the rising cost of fuel will impact fares, and says the company may have to raise ticket prices by a few dollars.

Twin River Casino Fire

According to NBC 10, crews responded to a small slot machine fire at Twin River Casino in Lincoln this morning. The small fire was caused by a minor mechanical issue with one machine. There was no noticeable damage or injuries, according to the spokesperson.



MA Gasoline at New Record Highs

Massachusetts’s average gas price is up 54 cents from last week ($3.62), averaging $4.16 per gallon. This is the highest average price ever recorded by AAA in Massachusetts.


Today’s price is 72 cents higher than a month ago ($3.44), and $1.48 higher than March 7, 2021 ($2.68). Massachusetts’s average gas price 10 cents higher than the national average.


“The extraordinary volatility in global oil markets stems from the Russian invasion of Ukraine and the question of whether the United States and NATO will impose sanctions on the Russian oil and gas industry.


As that issue continues to be debated today, the market will see significant upward pressure on petroleum-related commodities,” says Mary Maguire, Director of Public/Government Affairs. “The 45-cent increase in gas prices here in the U.S. over the past 7 days amounts to the single largest increase since AAA has tracked domestic gas prices. The negative impact of these explosive prices on American consumers will only increase in the near term.”


AAA Northeast’s March 7 survey of fuel prices found the current national average to be 45 cents higher than last week ($3.61), averaging $4.06 a gallon. The national average hasn’t been this high since July 2008. Today’s national average price is 62 cents higher a month ago ($3.44), and $1.30 higher than this day last year ($2.76).

The Brayton Point Conclusion

The Massachusetts Land Court issued its decision regarding a Scrap Metal facility at Brayton Point in Somerset on 7 March 2022 




V. Remedy

As discussed above, decisions 26 and 29, ordering Brayton Point to cease and desist
operations, and decisions 7-9, reversing the commissioner’s decision and reinstating his cease
and desist order, will be affirmed. The ZBA has filed both its 533 counterclaim and 155
counterclaim, in which it seeks a permanent injunction requiring Brayton Point to fully comply
with decisions 26 and 29, decisions 7-9, the cease and desist order, and the bylaw.

 Based on the
findings of fact and conclusions of law above, judgment shall enter on both the 533 counterclaim
and the 155 counterclaim ordering Brayton Point to cease and desist from the scrap metal
operation within fourteen days, and to fully comply with decisions 26 and 29, decisions 7-9, the
cease and desist order, and the bylaw. Brayton Point will be specifically enjoined from allowing

the operation of the scrap metal operation until it demonstrates to the ZBA that it can operate
consistent with the 2019 decision and the bylaw.


For the foregoing reasons, the ZBA’s decisions 26, 29, and decisions 7-9 are
AFFIRMED. Brayton Point is ORDERED to fully comply with decision 26, decision 29,
decision 7, decision 8, decision 9, the cease and desist order, and the bylaw. Until further order
of the court, Brayton Point, LLC, its agents, servants, guests, and invitees, and all persons
operating under its authority, are hereby further ORDERED to cease the operation of its scrap
metal operation within fourteen (14) days from the date of judgment. Brayton Point, LLC and
their agents, servants, guests, and invitees are only to resume operations after approval by the

The Andrade Decision

Former Chief of Staff to Convicted Fall River Mayor Sentenced for False Statements

BOSTON – The former Chief of Staff to the now-convicted former Fall River Mayor Jasiel Correia III was sentenced today in federal court in Boston for making false statements in connection with lying to federal authorities about her salary-kickback arrangement with the former Mayor.


Genoveva Andrade, 50, of Somerset, was sentenced by U.S. Senior District Court Judge Douglas P. Woodlock to time served, one year of supervised release. Andrade was also ordered to pay a $50,000 fine. Earlier in the hearing, Andrade pleaded guilty to making a false statement.


“Ms. Andrade had many choices – rather than serve the people of Fall River with the integrity she swore to provide, she chose to support the corrupt leadership of Jasiel Correia by lying to federal authorities in an effort to protect him.


This prosecution is about the citizens of Fall River who have every right to expect that their government will focus on improving the lives of the people who live in this great City. The Mayor and his Chief of Staff put their own self interests above the needs of their constituents,” said United States Attorney Rachael S. Rollins. “My office will continue to hold government officials who abuse their positions of trust accountable. We will continue to work with our federal, state, and local law enforcement partners to root out corruption wherever it lies.”


“Instead of doing right by the citizens of Fall River, Genoveva Andrade repeatedly lied to us about Mayor Jasiel Correia’s criminal conduct in an effort to obstruct our investigation and protect components of City Hall under their leadership,” said Joseph R. Bonavolonta, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Division. “Today’s sentence brings this sordid chapter in Fall River history to a close, while also making it crystal clear that anyone who lies to the FBI during the course of a public corruption investigation will not get away with it.”  


“Ms. Andrade’s admission to making false statements to special agents reveal her efforts to hide facts in this investigation,” said Joleen D. Simpson, Special Agent in Charge of the Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation Division, Boston Office. “Today’s sentencing reflects the serious nature of her role in the kickback arrangement for which she will now be held accountable.”

“Today’s events are the result of Ms. Andrade placing her loyalty to Jasiel Correia above her duty to the people of Fall River,” said Massachusetts Inspector General Glenn A. Cunha. “My office and our federal partners are committed to ensuring that public officials in Massachusetts who choose a similar path will face consequences for their criminal acts.”

Soon after Correia hired Andrade as his Chief of Staff in November 2017, she began kicking back half of her salary to Correia on a bi-weekly basis until July 2018. She also kicked back nearly all of the $10,000 city-funded “snow stipend” that Correia approved for Andrade.

Andrade made false statements to federal agents in December 2018 in connection with her salary kickback arrangement with Correia.

On May 14, 2021, Correia was convicted by a federal jury of nine counts of wire fraud, four counts of filing false tax returns, four counts of extortion conspiracy and four counts of extortion. Judge Woodlock dismissed six counts of wire fraud and four counts of filing false tax returns, for which the jury convicted Correia. On Sept. 21, 2021, Correia was sentenced by Judge Woodlock to six years in prison and three years of supervised release. He still has yet to surrender. On March 3, 2022, the Court delayed Correia’s self-surrender date for the sixth time – he was scheduled to surrender the following day. Correia was previously ordered to report to prison on Dec. 3, 2021; Jan. 10, 2022; Jan. 28, 2022; Feb. 13, 2021; Feb. 14, 2022; and March 4, 2022. He is now scheduled to begin his prison sentence on April 5, 2022. The Government will continue to strongly advocate that Correia begin to serve his sentence.

State of the City in Fall River

Mayor Paul Coogan to Hold State of the City Address

(FALL RIVER, MA- March 4, 2022)- On March 8, 2022 at 5:30pm, Mayor Paul Coogan will
be giving the annual State of the City address from the City Council Chambers in Government
Center. During his speech, Mayor Coogan will be announcing several more allocations from Fall
River’s ARPA funds. The Fall River City Council, School Committee and state legislative
delegation will be present at the Address. The event is open to the public and media are welcome
to attend.

The speech will be broadcast on the Fall River Government Television cable channel
(Comcast Channel 18) as well as the FRGTV live feeds on Facebook
( and Youtube (

MA Gasoline Nears $4 a Gallon This Weekend

Massachusetts’s average gas price is up 24 cents from Monday ($3.62), averaging $3.86 per gallon. Today’s price is the highest since October of 2012, and the highest one-week jump since September of 2017. Today’s price is 45 cents higher than a month ago ($3.41), and $1.20 higher than March 4, 2021 ($2.66). Massachusetts’s average gas price 3 cents higher than the national average.


“The price of crude oil started today over $111 per barrel due to the invasion of Ukraine, and will likely increase with continuing conflict,” says Mary Maguire, Director of Public/Government Affairs. “Improving weather will lead to more driving, increased gasoline demand, and higher prices. Pain at the pump could continue for weeks or months to come.”


AAA Northeast’s March 4 survey of fuel prices found the current national average to be 22 cents higher than Monday ($3.61), averaging $3.83 a gallon. Today’s national average price is 41 cents higher a month ago ($3.42), and $1.09 higher than this day last year ($2.74).

More New Bedford Clinics

Upcoming COVID-19 Testing Sites 
New Bedford, Massachusetts – Project Beacon’s appointment-based COVID-19 testing at New Bedford Regional Airport—part of the state’s Stop the Spread program—will offer testing on Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and Thursday next week. 
Appointments for free COVID-19 tests can be made at Airport officials ask that people reach the site via the airport’s side entrance on Downey Street. 
Contact Project Beacon by email at; or by calling 617-741-7310.  
For walk-up testing, Seven Hills Behavioral Health offers free services at former Fire Station 11 in the South End on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, and at PAACA on Coggeshall St. on Wednesday. 
For rapid tests, the federal government is offering free at-home test kits online, at Every home in the U.S. is eligible to order four free at-home COVID-?19 tests. If you test positive with a rapid test, isolate for at least five days and notify close contacts. State guidance on isolation and quarantining can be found here.
If you test negative, re-testing a day or more later is advised, particularly if you have symptoms or a known exposure to the virus. 
Testing sites in New Bedford and surrounding towns can be found on the state’s Stop the Spread website,
Upcoming testing locations in New Bedford include: 
Sunday, March 6: 
-    Project Beacon at New Bedford Regional Airport (1569 Airport Road) – 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Monday, March 7: 
-    Project Beacon at New Bedford Regional Airport (1569 Airport Road) – 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
-    Seven Hills at former Fire Station 11 (754 Brock Ave.) – 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Tuesday, March 8: 
-    Project Beacon at New Bedford Regional Airport (1569 Airport Road) – 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
-    Seven Hills at former Fire Station 11 (754 Brock Ave.) – 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Wednesday, March 9:
-    Seven Hills at PAACA (360 Coggeshall St.) – 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Thursday, March 10:
-    Project Beacon at New Bedford Regional Airport (1569 Airport Road) – 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
-    Seven Hills at former Fire Station 11 (754 Brock Ave.) – 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Friday, March 11:
-    Seven Hills at former Fire Station 11 (754 Brock Ave.) – 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Sunday, March 13: 
-    Project Beacon at New Bedford Regional Airport (1569 Airport Road) – 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

More SNAP Dollars in MA

Massachusetts Provides Increased SNAP Benefits and Heating Assistance for
Low-Income Households

DTA and DHCD adjust food benefit to reflect increased utility costs, connect households to heating assistance


BOSTON – Today, the Baker-Polito Administration announced that approximately 200,000 Massachusetts households who participate in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) will see an increase in benefits starting March 2022 in response to rising utility costs.


SNAP benefit levels are determined in part by the average cost of utilities for Massachusetts households, and the Commonwealth requested and received approval from the federal government to adjust heating costs used when determining SNAP benefit amounts to reflect the rising costs of consumer goods occurring this winter. This adjustment increases support to eligible families by an estimated $1.4 million.


The Baker-Polito Administration also announced that the Department of Transitional Assistance (DTA) and Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) have partnered to increase outreach to thousands of households with information on the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), commonly known as Fuel Assistance. In January, DTA sent out multilingual text messages to over 69,000 households with young children receiving SNAP with information on LIHEAP.


To-date, this text helped lead to an 85% increase in new LIHEAP applications among this population compared to the same time period in the previous year. A second message will be sent in late March to an estimated 300,000 households who receive SNAP benefits and include a person who is age 60 or older or have a disability. 

This year’s heating assistance program is accepting applications through May 13, 2022. DHCD also received substantial additional LIHEAP funding from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) to maximize benefits for residents during the 2020-2021 heating season, and the current heating season. In the 2020-2021 heating season, LIHEAP served approximately 135,000 households. 

Massachusetts v Russia

BOSTON – Today, Governor Charlie Baker signed Executive Order 597, which directs all executive branch agencies to review and terminate any contracts with any Russian state-owned company. The executive order also directs agencies to review any partnership, affiliation, or exchange with any Russian state-owned company, Russian government controlled entity, or Russian governmental body.  

“With this order, we hope to build on the sanctions the federal government has already placed on Russia for their unjustified attack on Ukraine,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “The Commonwealth of Massachusetts condemns the actions of Russia and stands firmly with the free and democratic nation of Ukraine.”

“The Commonwealth will continue to offer its support Ukraine and stand with them in the face of Russian aggression,” said Lt. Governor Karyn Polito. “My thoughts are with all the Ukrainian people during this horrific time.”

The Governor’s executive order encourages independent agencies and authorities, public education institutions, and other constitutional offices to adopt similar policies.

The order also directs the Office for Refugees and Immigrants to work with the Federal Office of Refugee Resettlement and other stakeholder agencies to support Ukrainian immigrants and refugees fleeing the conflict. 

Reinstated Death Sentence for Boston Bomber

According to the Boston Globe, the Supreme Court has reinstated the death sentence for convicted Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.


“By a 6-3 vote, agreed with the Biden administration’s arguments that a federal appeals court was wrong to throw out the sentence of death a jury imposed on Tsarnaev for his role in the bombing that killed three people near the finish line of the marathon in 2013. The 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Boston ruled in 2020 that the trial judge improperly excluded evidence that could have shown Tsarnaev was deeply influenced by his older brother, Tamerlan, and was somehow less responsible for the carnage. The appeals court also faulted the judge for not sufficiently questioning jurors about their exposure to extensive news coverage of the bombing.”

Fall River: ''Its Booming''

In a State of Business Address to members of One SouthCoast Chamber, Fall River Mayor Paul Coogan indicated that with new market rate housing under construction, national chain eateries locating in Fall RIver, and new Marijuana Retail locations opening in 2022, Fall River's overall economy was ''booming''.


One of the Co CEOs of One SouthCoast Chamber, Ric Kidder, told WSAR that there remain challenges regarding the cost of housing, which has in many cases been steadily rising as the 2023 arrival of Commuter Rail is being targeted. 

JCII April 5

Former convicted Fall RIver Mayor Jasiel Correia II was supposed to self-surrender to FCI Berlin in New Hampshire during the noon hour on March 4, but Federal Judge Douglas Woodlock decided to grant him one more reprive, until April 5. 

Correia's Boston-Based legal team is working on his appeal for a 2021 conviction on 10 counts of bribery and extortion. 

Paying for Diman

By a vote of 7-2, the Fall River City Council decided during a Special Meeting in Government Center Thursday Night to forgo an April 11 ballot on a debt exclusion for a proposed new Diman Regional Vocational Technical High School, instead leaving it to future Councils to decide how to pay for 30 years of the local share for a new building. 


Proponents of a new Diman pointed out that the current building is over 60 years old, and is not ADA compliant. 


They also claimed that the current building needed a new roof. 

NB Man Arrested in Maine

According to CBS 12 in Providence, a New Bedford man accused of shooting his ex-girlfriend's new boyfriend last month was recently arrested in Maine. Tylor Santos, 29, is facing various charges in connection with the non-fatal shooting that occurred in New Bedford on January 6. While investigating, detectives determined Santos had traveled to Maine immediately after the shooting. The United States Marshals Service and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives joined the investigation and eventually discovered Santos was likely hiding out at a residence in Embden, Maine.


Santos was arrested on several warrants charging him with multiple offenses related to the shooting as well as to other incidents, police said. Those charges included assault with a dangerous weapon, attempted assault and battery with a firearm and domestic assault

and battery.

NB Buys Armory Bought for $10

According to NBC 10 in Providence, in a memo to the New Bedford City Council, Mayor Jon Mitchell said the city intends to buy the property from the state to save it from demolition with an agreed purchase price of $10. The boarded-up New Bedford Armory, built in 1904, once served as training, meeting, and storage facility for the Massachusetts Army National Guard. The roof is in need of a lot of work and the purchase & sale agreement shows the state would pay to replace it for $3.3 million.


The City Council referred the request to the Committee on City Property on February 24. Mitchell said the substantial investment from the state would make the building a more attractive prospect for developers. The city will likely have to spend about $5,000 a year to keep the building in solid condition until a developer takes over.

Gina Raimondo Critical Role

According to NBC 10 in Providence, Commerce Secretary and former Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo played a critical role in last night's state of the union address. Raimondo was the "designated survivor." as she watched the speech from a secure location. The role is meant to make sure there's someone poised to take over as president in case of a catastrophic event at the capitol. Raimondo was confirmed to serve as Biden's commerce secretary in March 2021.

MLB and the MLBPA have no deal on a CBA

Tuesday’s deadline for a new collective bargaining agreement passed without a deal between Major League Baseball and the MLB Players Association, as the players voted to reject the league’s final proposal before 5 p.m. ET.


With no deal in place, MLB announced that each team’s first two series of the regular season will not be played, meaning that the regular season will begin no earlier than April 7, while Spring Training games will begin no earlier than March 12.


MLB extended Monday night’s deadline until Tuesday at 5 p.m., believing enough progress had been made during Monday’s 16-hour bargaining marathon that a deal could be consummated the next day.

“We worked hard to avoid an outcome that is bad for our fans, bad for our players and bad for our clubs,” said Commissioner Rob Manfred while speaking to the assembled media in Jupiter, Fla., where the negotiations were taking place. “I want to assure our fans that our failure to reach an agreement was not due to a lack of effort on the part of either party.”

MLB made what it called its “best offer” before the deadline, though the MLBPA rejected it, prompting the league to take the first week’s worth of games off the schedule.

“The clubs and our owners fully understand just how important it is to our millions of fans that we get the game on the field as soon as possible,” said Manfred. “To that end, we want to bargain and we want a deal with the Players Association as quickly as possible."

In February, Manfred said that based on injury data and the experience of the 2020 pandemic-shortened season, Spring Training should be at least four weeks long in order for players to properly prepare for the season. Without a deal on Tuesday, that means starting the season later than the scheduled March 31 Opening Day.

MLB’s final offer would have meant nearly $500 million in additional compensation for pre-arbitration players through a 23% increase in minimum salary and a $30 million pre-arbitration bonus pool. It would have also increased the competitive balance tax threshold to $220 million, a jump from $214 million in 2021. The MLBPA was reportedly seeking an $85 million bonus pool for pre-arbitration players and a competitive balance tax threshold starting at $238 million.

Among the proposals in MLB’s last offer were:

Minimum Salary

A $700,000 minimum salary, escalating $10,000 in each year of the deal. That would represent a $129,500 increase from the 2021 minimum salary, the largest single-year increase in the sport’s history.
The $129,500 increase is nearly five times the $27,500 increase in the first year of the previous CBA, when the minimum salary went from $507,500 to $535,000.
The $129,500 increase would also be larger than the aggregate increase in the minimum salary over the last 10 years, when it increased from $480,000 in 2012 to $570,500 in 2021.
Minimum salary would not be fixed, so clubs and players would have the ability to agree to a higher amount, as they could in the previous CBA.
Pre-Arbitration Bonus Pool

MLB agreed to the union’s proposal to create a centrally funded pre-arbitration bonus pool to reward top-performing pre-arbitration players, and offered a pool of $30 million..
MLB agreed to expand the number of eligible players to 150 pre-arbitration players.
On average, the top 30 pre-arbitration players would increase their salaries by 79% under the pool, while 150 total players would receive bonuses for awards and performance.
MLB proposed forming a Joint Committee (three MLB representatives and three MLBPA representatives) to develop a mutually agreeable WAR statistic to allocate the funds.
Service Time Management

Players finishing first and second in Rookie of the Year voting would receive a full year of service time regardless of days spent in the Majors. Under this plan, Kris Bryant would have received a full year of service time in 2015.
Teams could receive selections after the first round of the Rule 4 and International Drafts for promoting top prospects to the Opening Day Rosters (Rule 4 selection for Rookie of the Year win and Top 3 in MVP and Cy Young; International selection for Rookie of the Year 2nd/3rd and Top 5 MVP / Cy Young).

Competitive Balance Tax

2022-24: $220 million
2025: $224 million
2026: $230 million
No changes in tax rates or non-monetary penalties for exceeding thresholds.
Draft Pick Compensation

MLB offered to eliminate direct Draft pick compensation (the qualifying offer system) for all free agents.
Draft Lottery

Top five selections chosen by NBA-style lottery (the NBA awards top four selections, the NHL awards top two selections via lottery)
Equal odds for bottom three record (16.5%). Revenue-sharing payees ineligible to be in lottery 3 straight years; non-payees ineligible in consecutive years. Ineligible teams can't pick higher than 8th overall.
Amateur System

Proposed increases in the Rule 4 Signing Bonus Values and the International Draft Slots would result in more than $23 million in additional spending on amateur players each year compared to 2019.
The International Draft would increase spending on international amateur players and maintain the number of players signed, while addressing corruption in multiple ways (including eliminating early deals and introducing mandatory drug testing).
“Kumar Rocker Rule”: Top-300 players who submit to a pre-draft physical must be offered at least 75% of the Slot Value associated with that selection (currently clubs are not required to make an offer to a player post-Draft)
Other Provisions

Playing Rules: MLB proposed the formation of a joint Competition Committee comprised of active players, individuals selected by the Office of the Commissioner and an umpire, which would be responsible for recommending and adopting changes to playing and scoring rules (Pitch Timer, Automated Ball-Strike, shift restrictions, and bigger bases).
Universal Designated Hitter: Creation of 15 jobs that traditionally go to veteran players who are limited defensively. The average salary for a primary DH in the American League in 2021 was $9.2 million, suggesting the change could add $130 million in player salaries.
Option Limit: Limit of five times per season that a player can be optioned to the Minors.
Expanded Postseason: 12 teams in each league, with the top two Division winners in each league receiving a bye. Postseason Players Pool would be increased by approximately $15 million from additional games, while 50 additional players would receive Postseason shares each year.
Mark Feinsand, an executive reporter, originally joined as a reporter in 2001. Follow him on Twitter @feinsand.

Russians War Effort Backfiring?

Russians running out of food, gas: US official

The Russian forces charging toward Kyiv haven't made progress in the last day as they face Ukrainian resistance and low food and gas supply, a senior U.S. defense official told reporters Tuesday.

However, it could be a deliberate pause, the official said. "Part of the stall could be ... as a result of their own self-determined sort of pause in operations -- that they are possibly regrouping, rethinking, reevaluating," the official said.

The official said some Russian soldiers weren't told they were going into combat. The official said "not all of them were apparently fully trained and prepared."

The strong Ukrainian resistance has also hurt morale, according to the official.

Russia has now launched more than 400 missiles on Ukraine, the official said. The U.S. believes Russia has launchers that could be used for thermobaric weapons, but cannot confirm their use, the official said.

Russian forces are making the most progress in the south. Russians are attacking Kherson in south Ukraine, which "appears very much to be contested city at this point," the official said.

Russians are also approaching Mariupol in southeastern Ukraine, and while they haven't yet entered the city, "they are close enough now that they could attack Mariupol with long range fires," the official said.

Two towns on the path to Mariupol are believed to be occupied by the Russians, according to the official.

The U.S. believes the Russians hope to move north out of Mariupol up to the heavily-contested city of Kharkiv. The official said they believe Russian forces are trying to encircle Kharkiv.

The U.S. official noted that they've seen "certain risk-averse behavior by the Russian military" over the last week.

"Take the amphibious assault, for instance. They put those troops ashore a good 70 kilometers away from Mariupol because they knew Mariupol was going to be defended and they could put them ashore in an uncontested environment. And they still haven't reached Mariupol," the official said.

"They are not necessarily willing to take high risks with their own aircraft and their own pilots," the official said.

"And of course we're seeing that on the ground -- the fairly slow and steady progress that they have made, and you guys are seeing it for yourselves on the ground where ... units are surrendering, sometimes without a fight."

-ABC News' Matt Seyler

Another Marijuana Bill in R-I

Cannabis legalization bill introduced
Bill includes social equity components

STATE HOUSE – Sen. Joshua Miller and Rep. Scott A. Slater today introduced a comprehensive bill to legalize, regulate and tax recreational cannabis sales in Rhode Island.

The legislation (2022-S 2430, 2022-H 7593) would legalize the sale and possession of up to 1 ounce of cannabis for those age 21 and up, with no more than 10 ounces for personal use kept in a primary residence, effective Oct. 1. It would also allow Rhode Islanders to grow a small amount of their own cannabis at home. 

“The time for Rhode Island to move forward with cannabis legalization is now. This historic shift in public policy will create a vibrant new marketplace in our state and end the failed practice of prohibition, which has caused such harm to so many in our communities. To help address those past wrongs, and to ensure all Rhode Islanders have the opportunity to share the economic benefits associated with legalization, equity is a central focus of this legislation,” said Senator Miller (D-Dist. 28, Cranston, Providence), chairman of the Senate Health and Human Services Committee.

The bill establishes a 10% state cannabis excise tax in addition to the 7% sales tax, plus a 3% local tax for the municipality where the sale takes place. It creates an independent three-member cannabis control commission, which would eventually also assume oversight of medical marijuana, which is currently under the purview of the Department of Business Regulation (DBR). It also establishes a cannabis advisory board and a cannabis office within DBR.

It allows up to 33 retail licenses distributed in six zones statewide, including nine compassion centers that could potentially be hybrid recreational and medical retailers.

The legislation includes measures to address social equity to reduce barriers to participation for those communities that have long been disproportionately affected by cannabis prohibition. It uses licensing fees and penalties to fund technical assistance and grants to applicants and communities that have been impacted, and reserves one license in each of the six districts for a social equity licensee and another in each district for a co-op. The legislation also creates a process for individuals to request expungement of prior convictions for misdemeanor and felony cannabis possession for amounts that have been decriminalized. 

“It is the right public policy for Rhode Island to make cannabis possession and sales legal. We have been studying legalization proposals here for many years, and we now can look to our neighboring states’ experiences and see that taxing and regulating cannabis makes sense,” said Representative Slater (D-Dist. 10, Providence). “I’m especially proud that we have made a very deliberate effort to address social equity through this bill. We have to recognize the harm that prohibition has done to communities, particularly minorities and poor, urban neighborhoods, and ensure that those communities get the support they need to benefit from legalization.”
Leaders emphasized that the proposal is only the starting point for the legislative process, during which the bill will doubtlessly undergo changes.

“I would like to thank Representative Scott Slater, who has worked tirelessly on this legislation,” said House Speaker K. Joseph Shekarchi. “I want to emphasize that the bill introduced today is not the final product – rather, it is the beginning of the public process of legalizing cannabis for recreational use in Rhode Island. We welcome input from the public as to whether or how we should implement recreational usage, and I expect robust discussions with House membership as well.”

The legislation was developed over the course of months of discussions among legislative leaders, the sponsors and stakeholders including health and community leaders, law enforcement, cultivators and more. The bill also draws on discussions held during hearings for previous legalization bills introduced by the sponsors over the course of years, including one that passed the Senate in 2021.

“We’ve been working hard since the end of last session to establish consensus on the details, but our efforts to address the issue have been going on for many years, during which time our neighboring states have already made this move ahead of us. Rhode Island is now behind them from a competitive standpoint, since it’s fairly easy for most Rhode Islanders to cross the state line to make a legal purchase,” said Senate Majority Leader Michael McCaffrey (D-Dist. 29, Warwick). “The truth is, legal cannabis is already widely available to Rhode Islanders, but the resulting revenue is not. With this bill, we will create jobs, revenue and control in our own state, and help address some of the inequities that have resulted from prohibition. I look forward to working with my colleagues, stakeholders and the public to ensure that we take the careful, nuanced and equitable approach we need to transform this economic sector.”

Fall River Special Election

The Fall River City Council will hold a special session on Thursday, March 3, regarding a veto by Fall RIver Mayor and School Committee Chair Paul Coogan of a City Council vote taken on February 22 regarding the potential construction of a new Diman Regional Vocation Technical High School. 


A Special Election that will feature a one question, yes or no ballot will happen in Fall River concerning the DIman Question on April 11. 

Special UMass Event in April

UMass Dartmouth Center for Portuguese Studies and Culture to host International Colloquium on April 8 and 9

The Center for Portuguese Studies and Culture is set to host an international colloquium in April 2022, the theme is “Social Movements and Civic Engagement in the Lusophone World”. The colloquium will open on April 8th at the Whaling Museum with 3 panels and a formal dinner.


The next day the colloquium will be held on the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth campus with 1 more panel and 2 roundtable discussions. The colloquium will bring together writers and scholars from across the Lusophone world, such as Lidia Jorge, Noemi Jaffe, Victor Barros, Marcal Paredes and Yvette dos Santos


Dr. Paula Noversa, the Center’s Director stated, “The impact of social movements and civic engagement both within and across national boundaries is a timely subject. One that is worthy of deeper examination. The goal of the colloquium is to bring together individuals from differing fields such as writers, academics, and politicians to discuss the multifaceted aspects of social movements and civic engagement throughout the lusophone world.”  A detailed program will follow. 

SouthCoast CARES

Southcoast Health Announces Southcoast CARES Program, Part of New Community Health and Wellness Department


Emphasis on overall community health and wellbeing by focusing on Southcoast CARES initiatives that extend beyond clinical care 


NEW BEDFORD, Mass. – Southcoast Health is proud to announce its Southcoast CARES program, part of the newly rebranded Community Health and Wellness department formerly known as Community Benefits. This title change reflects the department’s expanded focus on Southcoast CARES initiatives, which work to improve health equity and health status across the entire South Coast region. The Community Health and Wellness department also includes Community Relations, Data Analysis and Reporting.


“Socioeconomic indicators such as income, education, race and zip code are major factors that directly influence health outcomes and are often the best predictors of health status and health equity,” says Rachel Davis, Director of Community Health and Wellness at Southcoast Health. “We are proud to strengthen our community outreach efforts with this comprehensive redesign of the program, and we thank our dedicated staff and community partners for their continued support addressing these challenges in our community.”


Southcoast CARES initiatives exemplify the health system’s commitment to community outreach, beyond clinical care, to best serve and support all residents of the region. The program is composed of three strategic areas—Community Wellness Initiatives, Community Engagement and Impact and Community Health Improvement Planning—to address the current and future health and social needs of our region. 

•    Community Wellness Initiatives: Programs that support ongoing population health initiatives and expand access to services, outreach, education and connection to basic health and social resources. These programs include the new Community Wellness Program, The New Beginnings Program, The Basics, Southcoast and The Southcoast Resource Connect Platform. 

•    Community Engagement and Impact: Southcoast’s community support through contributions, coalition participation, volunteerism efforts and grant programs.
•    Community Health Improvement Planning: A community-driven initiative

that focuses on collaboration with a diverse group of South Coast residents and leaders to create long-term, transformational change to the overall health and wellness of the region. 

“As we continue developing new community health initiatives, it is important that we not only react to specific community needs but proactively address them,” says Davis. “Focusing on initiatives targeting socio-economic needs, we are hoping to get ahead of the root causes of many current health problems and break the cycle.”

To learn more about Southcoast’s Community Health & Wellness department, including Southcoast CARES please visit Southcoast Health CARES - Southcoast Health. 

RI Officials Invited to the State of the Union

According to ABC 6, President Biden is set to deliver his State of the Union speech today, and much of the Rhode Island Delegation will be there with guests from the area. Congressman David Cicilline announces UNAP President and Rhode Island nurse Lynn Bais as his guest to the state of the union, in an effort to highlight the sacrifices of Rhode Island's healthcare workers.


Congressman Jim Langevin announced that he is inviting Peter Alviti, Jr., Director of the Rhode Island Department of Transportation, as the state continues to rebuild critical infrastructure.

Langevin invited Alviti to celebrate the work RIDOT is doing to rebuild the state's infrastructure and to highlight the bipartisan infrastructure law's impact on the lives of Rhode Islanders.