WSAR NEWS Archives for 2022-04

New Bedford Homicide

Massachusetts State Police detectives assigned to the district attorney’s office, New Bedford Police and Homicide Unit prosecutors are actively investigating a homicide which occurred today in New Bedford.

At 1:01 am today, ShotSpotter alerted New Bedford Police to shots being fired in the area of 193 Weld Street.  When first responders arrived on scene, they located a male gunshot victim as the lone occupant of a Chrysler Sebring.  The victim, a 36-year-old New Bedford man was determined deceased on scene by New Bedford paramedics. 

The victim cannot be publicly identified at this time since his next of kin has yet to be located and notified of the death.  Once a public identification of the victim can be made, this office will send out a follow up media advisory.

The investigation into the homicide is extremely active at this time and no further information about the facts of the ongoing probe can be disseminated.

Southcoast's Dr. Daniel Sousa Honored as 2022 Community Clinician of the Year by Mass. Medical Society

FALL RIVER, Mass. – The Massachusetts Medical Society (MMS) announced Southcoast Health pulmonologist and critical care physician Daniel Sousa, MD, has been selected as the Bristol South District Medical Society’s 2022 Community Clinician of the Year. This award recognizes his professionalism and contributions as a physician. 

Dr. Sousa has been on the frontlines of the pandemic during the past few years. In 2020, he was profiled in the Fall River Herald News about his work caring for patients with COVID-19. 

“It is a great honor to be recognized by the Massachusetts Medical Society. There are so many deserving physicians at Southcoast Health and in Bristol County, especially with the work that’s been done to fight the pandemic in the last two years,” Sousa said. “I am very grateful to receive this award and to the dedicated team I work with at Southcoast Health. When you work with great people they make you shine. This award is as much theirs as it is mine.”

Southcoast Health President and CEO Rayford Kruger, MD, congratulated Sousa for his achievement.

“Dr. Sousa is an outstanding physician highly deserving of this recognition. His work in critical care medicine and with pulmonary patients and those with COVID-19 is greatly respected,” Kruger said. “We are proud that he is a part of Southcoast Physicians Group and pleased that he has earned this recognition from the MMS, an esteemed physician organization.”

Dr. Sousa has practiced in the Fall River area since 2004 and is board certified in internal medicine, pulmonary medicine and critical care medicine. He is a fellow in the College of Chest Physicians. Dr. Sousa received his Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of Vermont College of Medicine. He completed his internal medicine residency program at Brown University School of Medicine/Rhode Island Hospital and Miriam Hospital and his training in pulmonary/critical care medicine at Rhode Island Hospital, Roger Williams Hospital, Memorial Hospital, and Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Providence. Dr. Sousa also served on the Fall River Board of Health for ten years from 2010-2019.

The Massachusetts Medical Society (MMS) is the statewide professional association for physicians and medical students. Last year, the MMS named Dr. Holly Alexandre as the Bristol South District’s Community Clinician of the Year.

To learn more about the providers at Southcoast Health, please visit 

Rehoboth Police Department is Taking Back Unwanted Prescription Drugs Saturday April 30, 2022


On Saturday, April 30th from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. the Rehoboth Police Department and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration will be giving the public an opportunity to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused and unwanted prescription drugs.

 Bring your medications for disposal to the Rehoboth Police Department located at 334 Anwan Street. (We cannot accept liquids, needles or sharps, only pills or patches.) The service is free and anonymous, no questions asked.

For more information about the event and to locate a take back location near you go to

UMass Law and Johnson & Wales University establish an accelerated undergraduate and law degree program

New 3+3 agreement is the 14th partnership for the law school and the first outside MA

The University of Massachusetts School of Law – Dartmouth (UMass Law) and Johnson & Wales University (JWU) in Providence, RI have finalized an agreement for a joint 3+3 program that will enable JWU students to earn an undergraduate and law degree in six rather than seven years.

Undergraduate students will take classes and earn credit toward their undergraduate degree at JWU during the first three years of the accelerated program. In the fourth year, they will matriculate at UMass Law as first-year law students, where they will begin taking law courses that will fulfill their remaining undergraduate requirements while simultaneously beginning their legal education. 

The accelerated degree program allows students to apply credits earned during the first year of law school to their final year of college, thereby saving thousands of dollars in tuition and living expenses.

“Our 3+3 programs serve our core mission of expanding access to justice by significantly reducing the cost of receiving an undergraduate and legal education and increasing the pathways to the profession,” said UMass Law Dean Eric Mitnick. “We are particularly excited to partner with Johnson & Wales, our first partner outside of Massachusetts, because it is an institution that values the sort of deep engagement and experiential education that will prepare students to succeed in law school and make a difference in their communities.” 

"All of us at JWU are pleased to partner with UMass Law on this exciting new 3+3 Law program, as our institutions share a common commitment to broadening access and lowering barriers to higher education,” said JWU College of Arts & Sciences Dean Michael Fein, Ph.D. “Opening this pathway means that exceptional JWU students who see law school as part of their academic journey will have a tremendous opportunity to reduce their tuition costs while accelerating their progress, and we look forward to sending talented JWU students to UMass Law to jump start their legal careers a year ahead of schedule."

"I am especially excited about this partnership as both institutions share a strong commitment to experientially based learning,” JWU Provost Richard Wiscott, Ph.D. added. “JWU students will be ready to hit the ground running as they begin their law studies."

NBPD Officer Hit by Drunk Driver

According to ABC 6, New Bedford police arrested a man accused of hitting an officer with his car early yesterday morning. Police said they received a call at 2 A.M.. about a man who passed out behind the wheel at the intersection of Kempton and Jenney Streets. Upon arrival, police said they found 30-year-old Robert Miller's car parked facing the wrong way. The officers then attempted to break the car window, which woke up Miller when he then tried to drive away from the scene, and intentionally hit one of the officers in the process that officer was taken to the hospital to be treated for non-life-threatening injuries. Miller was charged with assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, failure to stop for police, assault and battery on a police officer, and OUI of liquor.


The 30-year-old was seen later in court, where he was found to be dangerous and was held without bail.

UMass Dartmouth Commencement Activities

UMass Dartmouth will hold its 122nd Commencement ceremonies on May 6, 2022, on the Cressy Football Field at the main campus at 285 Old Westport Rd., Dartmouth, MA 02747. UMass Law’s Commencement ceremony will take place on May 9, 2022, in the Main Campus Center Auditorium.

The schedule is as follows:

Friday, May 6 at Cressy Field (rain or shine)

Class of 2022 Ceremony I

Undergraduate and Graduate students from the following:
•    School for Marine Science & Technology
•    College of Engineering
•    Charlton College of Business

Timing (Approximate):
•    8 a.m. - Graduate and guest arrival, check-in, and line up on Tennis Courts.
•    9 a.m. - Ceremony begins
•    11 a.m. - Recession begins

Class of 2022 Ceremony II

Undergraduate and Graduate students from the following:
•    College of Visual & Performing Arts
•    College of Nursing & Health Sciences
•    College of Arts & Sciences

Timing (Approximate):
•    2 p.m. - Graduate and guest arrival, check-in, and line up on Tennis Courts.
•    3 p.m. - Ceremony begins
•    5 p.m. - Recession begins 

Monday, May 9, in the Auditorium

UMass Law Class of 2022 Ceremony

•    9 a.m. - Graduate and guest arrival, check-in, and line up
•    10 a.m. - Ceremony begins
•    11:30 a.m. – Recession begins

Media planning to connect to the event audio feed should use the contact information below to arrange a setup ahead of time.

Due to expected traffic on campus, media should plan to arrive early.

Learn more about the UMassD Class of 2022.

SouthCoast Gets Certification

NEW BEDFORD, Mass. – Southcoast Health announced today that the not-for-profit community health system’s accountable care organizations (ACOs) – Southcoast Accountable Care Organization (SACO) and Southcoast Community Alliance (Medicaid ACO) – received ACO Certification under the Health Policy Commission’s (HPC) new certification standards known as ACO LEAP 2022-2023. The standards reflect HPC’s focus on learning, equity, and patient-centeredness. 


Southcoast Health’s ACOs first became HPC-certified in 2017, with SACO – its Medicare ACO – launching in 2013. Southcoast Health was in the first cohort of Medicaid ACOs in Massachusetts launching in 2018, which is operated in partnership with Boston Medical Center Health System. Southcoast Health’s two ACOs are responsible for over 40,000 covered lives in the South Coast region

“The new certification standards required us to show that we’ve integrated health equity and behavioral health into our care management systems,” said Jay Lawrence, MD, Southcoast Health Senior Vice President, Chief Transformation and Innovation Officer and Physician-in-Chief for Primary Care. “Both are integral to meeting the care needs of patients with MassHealth insurance. Southcoast Health will always be committed to ensuring that every single patient, regardless of socioeconomic status, has access to high-quality health care and that we attend to both the behavioral and physical health needs of patients.” 


“The ACO Certification program, in alignment with other state agencies including MassHealth, is designed to accelerate care delivery transformation in Massachusetts and promote a high quality, efficient health system. ACOs participating in the program have met a set of objective criteria focused on core ACO capabilities demonstrating dedication to patient-centered care, use of evidence-based and data-driven strategies to improve care delivery, and commitment to addressing long-standing health inequities,” according to the letter received from the Health Policy Commission confirming the certification.


This certification is for the period of January 1, 2022, through December 31, 2023. 

ACOs are comprised of groups of doctors, hospitals, and other healthcare providers that organize themselves to provide coordinated high-quality care to patients. The goal of coordinated care is to ensure that patients get the right care at the right time, while avoiding unnecessary duplication of services and preventing medical errors. ACOs are successful when they are able to deliver high-quality care and spend healthcare dollars wisely.


The HPC Accountable Care Organization Certification Program is designed to accelerate care delivery transformation in Massachusetts and promote a high-quality, efficient health system. The program complements existing local and national care transformation and payment reform efforts, encourages value-based care delivery, and promotes investments by payers in high-quality and cost-effective care across the continuum. As of 2021, the Health Policy Commission has certified 16 ACOs that collectively represent 2.9 million attributed commercial, Medicare, and MassHealth patients in the Commonwealth.


The HPC ACO LEAP 2022-2023 standards are designed to allow for a variety of ACO approaches to meeting core principles consistent with the “Learning Health System” framework developed by the National Academy of Medicine (formerly the Institute of Medicine). This approach is intended to focus on the ACO model as a catalyst for learning and improvement, recognizing that ACO structures, processes, and approaches are conducive to learning and improvement over time.


About Southcoast Health
For more than 25 years, Southcoast Health has served communities across southeastern Massachusetts and Rhode Island as the largest provider of primary and specialty care in the region. The not-for-profit, charitable system includes three acute care hospitals – Charlton Memorial in Fall River, St. Luke’s in New Bedford (a Level II Trauma Center), and Tobey in Wareham – as well as a network of over 700 physicians, hospitalists, and midlevel practitioners. 


Southcoast Health has established seven Urgent Care Centers, two Cancer Centers, a Visiting Nurse Association, and numerous ambulatory facilities that ensure convenient access to services for 725,000 residents in 33 communities covering 900 square miles. In addition, the system partners with Acadia Healthcare to offer expanded resources at Southcoast Behavioral Health in Dartmouth.   


Southcoast Health is a Newsweek’s World’s Best Hospital in 2019, 2020, 2021 and 2022. In 2021, St. Luke’s was named to Newsweek and Leapfrog’s Best Maternity Hospitals for the second consecutive year, while US News ranked Southcoast among the 10 best hospitals in Massachusetts, and 2nd among those in the Providence Metro area. For three straight years, Southcoast Health has earned Best Hospitals and Best Place to Work in SouthCoast Media Group’s Best of the Best Awards, voted on by residents and readers.  

With upward of 7,500 employees, Southcoast Health is the largest employer in southeastern Massachusetts, and one of the largest employers in the Commonwealth, according to the Boston Business Journal. More information is available online at Connect to Southcoast Health through social media on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. Southcoast® is a registered trademark of Southcoast Health System.


House passes Whip Kazarian's bill banning the sale of animal furs

STATE HOUSE – The House of Representatives today passed legislation (2022-H 7361) sponsored by House Majority Whip Katherine S. Kazarian which would prohibit the sale, offer of sale, trade or distribution of animal fur products within Rhode Island.

            “Farming fur is not only cruel and inhumane to the poor animals trapped in cramped and filthy cages waiting to be killed and skinned, but it also poses significant health and environmental threats to the state.  From fur farms being documented as possible outbreak sites of dangerous zoonotic diseases, such as coronaviruses, to the energy intensive processes that are required, as well as, the potential air and water run off contamination from the hazardous metals and chemicals that are used, fur farming poses a threat to ourselves and the environment.  There was a time when animal furs were crucial to our survival, but that time has long passed and we must do the right thing and end this cruel and unnecessary practice of producing and selling animal furs for fashion purposes,” said Whip Kazarian (D-Dist. 63, East Providence).

            Fur products are defined as any article of clothing or covering for any part of the body, or any fashion accessory, including, but not limited to, handbags, shoes, slippers, hats, earmuffs, scarves, shawls, gloves, jewelry, key chains, toys or trinkets and home accessories and decor that is made in whole or in part of fur.  Any animal skin or part that is to be converted into leather, cowhide with the hair attached, lambskin or sheepskin with the fleece attached and the pelt or skin of any animal that is preserved through taxidermy, or for the purpose of taxidermy, are not considered fur products.

            Exemptions to the proposal include used products by an individual, excluding a retail transaction, nonprofit organization or second hand store, including a pawn shop and fur products required for use in the practice of a religion.

            Penalties for violating the act are for a first violation, a civil penalty of up to $500; for a second violation that occurred within one year of a previous violation, a civil penalty of up to $750; and for a third violation that occurred within one year of a second violation, a civil penalty $1,000.

            The legislation now heads to the Senate for consideration where Sen. Dawn Euer (D-Dist. 13, Newport, Jamestown) has introduced the bill (2022-S 2646).

House passes Potter bill prohibiting force-fed poultry products

STATE HOUSE – The House of Representatives today approved legislation sponsored by Rep. Brandon Potter to prohibit the production, sale or importation into Rhode Island of any force-fed poultry products. The bill now goes to the Senate.

The bill is aimed at preventing animal cruelty by prohibiting foie gras, which is created from the enlarged fatty livers of intentionally overfed geese or ducks. Poultry raised for foie gras are force-fed multiple times a day through metal pipes to intentionally inflict fatty liver disease upon them, causing their livers to enlarge to as much as 10 times their ordinary size. 

“Force feeding birds to intentionally give them a disease is obviously animal cruelty. It’s not acceptable to subject animals to this type of suffering for the sake of human pleasure. Foie gras is considered by some to be a delicacy, but it is one that we should absolutely reject for the immense cruelty of the method with which it is produced,” said Representative Potter (D-Dist. 16, Cranston). “Rhode Islanders have shown time and time again that they care about animal welfare, and I believe the vast majority of Rhode Islanders would not support the heinous practices that are used to produce foie gras.”
According to Representative Potter, the bill would affect fewer than 20 restaurants that have the dish on their menus. The bill would not affect any farms in Rhode Island, since none raise birds for foie gras. 

The legislation (2022-H 6663) would prohibit the production, sale, or importation into Rhode Island of any force-fed poultry product or food containing a force-fed poultry product and would impose a civil penalty $500 for each violation. It would become effective Jan. 1.

California has passed similar legislation, as has New York City. More than a dozen countries have banned the practices used to produce foie gras. 

The legislation is supported by the Humane Society of the United States, Animal Defenders International, Farm Sanctuary, Mercy for Animals and Rhode Island Vegan Awareness. It is cosponsored by House Deputy Speaker Charlene M. Lima (D-Dist. 14 Cranston, Providence), Rep. Patricia A. Serpa (D-Dist. 27, West Warwick, Coventry, Warwick), Rep. Rebecca Kislak (D-Dist. 4, Providence) and Rep. Jacquelyn Baginski (D-Dist. 17, Cranston).

House OKs bill to ban toxic chemicals from food packaging

STATE HOUSE – The House today approved legislation sponsored by Rep. Terri Cortvriend prohibiting per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) from food packaging made or sold in Rhode Island. The bill now goes to the Senate.

PFAS chemicals are used as grease-proofing agents in fast-food wrappers, microwave popcorn bags, take-out paperboard containers, and pet food bags to prevent oil and grease from foods from leaking through the packaging. 

While they’ve existed since the 1930s, research into the effects of PFAS as a contaminant in the environment is still emerging. It is known that they are water-soluble, long-lasting in the environment and accumulate in the human body, and that, in higher concentrations, they are toxic. PFAS are commonly used in nonstick and stain-repellent coatings, as well as firefighting foam and thousands of other applications. People are exposed to the chemicals in many ways, but the most potent risk comes from consuming contaminated water or food. 

The federal Environmental Protection Agency has resisted calls by public health groups and environmentalists to regulate the substances. The Food and Drug Administration allows their use in food packaging, but United States manufacturers have voluntarily worked to reduce releases of some PFAS due to their toxic effects on human health.

“While we don’t know everything we need to know about the full effects of PFAS on the environment or humans, there’s evidence linking them to cancer, hormone suppression, liver and thyroid problems. There’s growing concern among scientists about the effects of PFAS, enough so that the risks outweigh the benefits of having a grease-free paper wrapper on a cheeseburger.


There are alternative food packaging options, and we should use those instead of subjecting Rhode Islanders to the risks of PFAS contaminating their food,” said Representative Cortvriend (D-Dist. 72, Portsmouth, Middletown).

The legislation (2022-H 7438A) prohibits food packaging to which PFAS have been intentionally added in any amount from being manufactured, knowingly sold, or distributed in Rhode Island, as of Jan. 1, 2024. 

The legislation now goes to the Senate, where Sen. James A. Seveney (D-Dist. 11, Portsmouth, Bristol, Tiverton) is sponsoring companion legislation (2022-S 2044).

The House bill is cosponsored by Rep. June S. Speakman (D-Dist. 68, Warren, Bristol), Rep. Lauren H. Carson (D-Dist. 75, Newport), Rep. David Morales (D-Dist. 7, Providence), Rep. Alex D. Marszalkowski (D-Dist. 52, Cumberland), Rep. Michelle E. McGaw (D-Dist. 71, Portsmouth, Tiverton, Little Compton), Rep. Deborah Ruggiero (D-Dist. 74, Jamestown, Middletown), Rep. Kathleen A. Fogarty (D-Dist. 35, South Kingstown), Rep. Susan R. Donovan (D-Dist. 69, Bristol, Portsmouth) and Rep. Rebecca Kislak (D-Dist. 4, Providence).

Mayor Coogan to Present Proclamation at Arbor Day Fair

(Fall River, MA- April 28th, 2022)- On Saturday, April 30th at 10am, Mayor Paul Coogan will
be presenting an Arbor Day proclamation at the City of Fall River’s first ever Arbor Day Fair at
North Park.


Following the reading of the proclamation, residents may enjoy children’s crafts
with the Fall River Public Library and food from local food trucks.


National Grid, Davey
Resource Group and North-Eastern Tree will be present to discuss careers in forestry and
demonstrate their equipment.


National Grid has also donated multiple trees to be planted at
North Park during the event. The Arbor Day Fair spans from 10am until 2pm.
In addition to the day’s activities, the Fall River Street Tree Planting Project (FRSTPP),
in conjunction with Greening the Gateway and the City of Fall River, will be offering FREE tree
seedling giveaways.


Five varieties will be available- Douglas fir, bald cypress, shadblow (also
known as serviceberry or Juneberry), old fashioned lilac and chinkapin oak (also referred to as
Yellow Chestnut). FRSTPP will collect the addresses of where seedlings are to be planted and
create a map of 500 new trees now growing in Fall River. Directions of how to plant the
seedlings will be available at the FRSTPP information table on Snake Hill Road during
Saturday’s event.

Residents can monitor the Facebook event page for updates:


FALL RIVER — This year Ash Wednesday fell in early March less than a week after the large-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine and as the heartbreaking plight of the Ukrainian people was becoming evident.

As a way for area Catholics to respond, Bishop Edgar M. da Cunha, S.D.V., authorized that the Ash Wednesday collection be designated “to help the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine.” To date, that collection has raised a total $256,021 from parishes across the Diocese of Fall River with additional returns still being received.

“Once again the faithful women and men of the Diocese of Fall River have shown their characteristic generosity in responding to the suffering of others,” said Bishop da Cunha.

“I think we have all been moved both to prayer and a desire to do something after learning about and seeing through the news the utter destruction in Ukraine, the indiscriminate loss of life, the separation and displacements of families, and the unimaginable suffering.”

The Diocese of Fall River is forwarding proceeds from the collection to the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Subcommittee on the Church in Central and Eastern Europe, which, through its long-standing relationship with bishops in Central and Eastern Europe, is able to assist the Church in that region in its response and outreach to those affected and displaced by the violence.

Officials in the Fall River diocesan finance office said that many parishes reported continuing to receive contributions to the collection for Ukraine well after Ash Wednesday throughout the rest of March and right into April. In fact, some parishes were still remitting Ukrainian collection returns as of last week.

Father Jeffrey Cabral, who is pastor at Santo Christo Parish in Fall River, explained he had been accepting donations in the weeks following Ash Wednesday.

“Through Facebook posts, parish announcements, homilies and intentions during the Mass, and obviously through the television news, parishioners became profoundly more aware of the desperate need of the Ukrainian refugees, much like the Holy Family who once had to flee to Egypt,” he said.

Sharing that the response to the Ukrainian collection at Santo Christo far exceeded that of other special collections, Father Cabral said he is “truly humbled by the great generosity of his parishioners.”

In Falmouth, the St. Joseph, Guardian of the Holy Family Parish decided to augment the Ash Wednesday collection with proceeds from a chowder-to-go lunch and a special collection on Holy Thursday both earmarked specifically for relief efforts of the Knights of Columbus in Poland and Ukraine.

The pastor of St. Joseph’s, Monsignor Stephen J. Avila, explained, “To see families displaced, living in fear, losing homes and family members has touched many of our hearts and souls.”

Most dioceses in the U.S. hold the annual national collection for the Church in Central and Eastern Europe to help support the overall rebuilding of the Church in that region since the collapse of communism. In the Diocese of Fall River that collection is historically taken up on Good Friday. This year, however, in response to the urgency in Ukraine and collection’s focus on providing assistance there, Bishop da Cunha moved it up to Ash Wednesday.

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) website explains that the collection is an opportunity for Catholics in the U.S. to show their solidarity with their sisters and brothers in Ukraine.

In a February 28th letter to his brother bishops, the USCCB chairman of the Subcommittee on the Church in Central and Eastern Europe wrote that contributions to the collection “will continue to provide emergency funds that are already helping the victims of this war with food and water, hygiene supplies, support, and other necessary humanitarian services.”



Rhode Island on the Hot Seat Regarding Schools

A new report from the Rhode Island Public Expenditure Council says Rhode Island needs to do much more to help students in low-income school districts and finds the state isn't doing nearly enough to address inequities in public education. According to NBC 10 in providence, RIPEC's Michael Dibiase said the COVID-19 pandemic only made those existing problems worse. Rhode Island's education funding formula was changed by legislation in 2010, with the changes phased in over a decade, beginning in 2012.


Under the current formula, Rhode Island school districts spend an average of over $19,000 per pupil, which is 20% higher than the national average, but on a district-by-district level, many low-income communities are still spending less per pupil.

Suspect Charged in Former NB School Committee Member

According to ABC 6, a man is wanted on a murder charge for the deadly assault of a former New Bedford school committe member in Philadelphia. Philadelphia police said 41 year old Eric Pope died after being punched by a bouncer outside of lounge & sports bar earlier

Month. Police identified that bouncer as 24-year-old Kenneth Frye. Investigators said Pope was escorted out of the nightclub for being intoxicated, and that was when Frye allegedly punched

him in the headpope then fell to the ground and died from his injuries a week later. A vigil was held for Pope Wednesday night.


Fyre is facing charges of third-degree murder in connection with Pope's death.

New Bedford Mayor Focuses on Growth and Opportunity in State of the City Address

New Bedford, Massachusetts – In a forward-looking State of the City address to a sold-out crowd today, Mayor Jon Mitchell focused on growth and opportunity taking shape as New Bedford emerges from the pandemic.  

Speaking to more than 500 attendees at New Bedford High School, Mayor Mitchell’s address – delivered in-person for the first time in 2019 – covered a broad range of existing projects and new priorities that will energize the City for years to come.  

“We’ve succeeded because we made the conscious decision to seize responsibility for our own economic competitiveness, we have planned comprehensively, and we execute our plans relentlessly,” Mayor Mitchell said. “The essence of our strategy…has been all about capitalizing on our strengths, whether it’s in the arts and culture sector, health care, hospitality, or manufacturing. …We double down on what we’re good at, we help to cultivate the small businesses that grow organically here, and we support our anchor institutions.”

Mayor Mitchell cited the “beehive of economic activity” coming to the City’s working waterfront, where hundreds of millions of dollars across numerous public and private projects will vastly expand the Port of New Bedford’s industrial capacity and resources for commercial fishing, offshore wind, and a wave of growing maritime industries. 

“Our goal, simply stated, is to establish New Bedford as the top blue economy on the East Coast,” Mayor Mitchell said.  

Announcements in the address also included a 25-percent increase in road construction funds in this year’s capital budget—part of long-term infrastructure planning that Mayor Mitchell noted has not always been a priority in New Bedford. 

“The city didn’t have a capital plan when I got into office, but the one we’ve developed and executed has enabled us to more than double spending on road maintenance and building upgrades, which have included extensive energy efficiency retrofits,” Mayor Mitchell said. “We are committed to increasing this funding further still.”  

He also addressed the rising costs of healthcare for more than the City’s more than 1,100 employees, pledging to resubmit a proposal this budget season to adopt a state law that would give the city greater control over rising healthcare costs. Nearly every city and town in southeastern Massachusetts has adopted the law, but New Bedford’s City Council has twice failed to move it forward.  

“I urge councilors to give this proposal a thorough airing this time, so that everyone can understand that we can get better control over the long-term costs of healthcare without compromising the quality of coverage our employees enjoy,” Mayor Mitchell said.   

Mayor Mitchell also announced major investments using American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds to activate the development of vacant or underutilized commercial properties, as part of a continuing effort to ease the burden on taxpayers by broadening the City’s tax base. 

“I am announcing today that we are setting aside $5 million in funding from the American Rescue Plan Act to accelerate the development of vacant commercial properties that need just a little more funding to be redeveloped,” Mayor Mitchell said. “By helping these projects over the proverbial hump, we can help the city pay its bills.”

The most boisterous of several applause breaks in the speech came in response to an announcement related to the iconic Zeiterion Performing Arts Center, known as “the Z,” which is about to undertake its most comprehensive renovation and expansion in 40 years. 

“So that the Z can continue to thrive and contribute to the life of the city for the next 40 years, I am announcing today that we will invest $5 million in ARPA funds into the Z’s effort. As cities must reinvest in their anchor institutions, this opportunity frankly is a no-brainer,” Mayor Mitchell said.      
He also spoke about the city’s physical beauty, and implored residents to continue involving themselves in the betterment of their community.

“A city is more than a place on a map.  It shapes our relationships with one another, and is woven into our individual identity.  It is part of who we are – past, present and future. When you devote your talent and energy to make your city a better place, you've committed to improving yourself.”

Read the full text of Mayor Mitchell’s 2022 State of the City Address on the City of New Bedford website. 

Red Sox reinstate catcher Kevin Plawecki from COVID-19 related injured list

BOSTON, MA – The Boston Red Sox today reinstated catcher Kevin Plawecki from the COVID-19 Related Injured List. To make room for Plawecki on the active roster, the club optioned catcher Connor Wong to the Triple-A Worcester roster.

Chief Baseball Officer Chaim Bloom made the announcement.

Plawecki, 31, was placed on the COVID-19 Related Injured List prior to the game on April 18. The right-handed hitter has played in four games this season, with the Red Sox winning each of his three starts at catcher. In three seasons with Boston (2020-22), he has batted .297 (74-for-249) with a .757 OPS in 92 games.

Wong, 25, drove in the game-winning run with a sacrifice fly in the seventh inning against Toronto on April 19. Recalled prior to the game on April 18, the right-handed hitter has made two starts at catcher for the Red Sox, batting .167 (1-for-6) with an RBI. In four games at catcher for Triple-A Worcester, he has hit .250 (4-for-16) with three runs scored.

Overnight Bridge Repair Operations on Route 140 Northbound over Braley Road

NEW BEDFORD - The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) is announcing it will be performing bridge repairs on Route 140 northbound over Braley Road in New Bedford. The work is scheduled to begin on Sunday, May 1, and continue weekly, Monday through Friday, during nighttime hours from 9:00 p.m. to 5:00 a.m. the following morning.  The work is anticipated to conclude in early July.
Standard temporary traffic control management operations will be utilized including various lane and shoulder closures and the use of police detail officers. A minimum of one open travel lane will be maintained at all times on both directions on Braley Road.
Drivers who are traveling through the affected areas should expect delays, reduce speed, and use caution. 

Firearm and Drug Bust in Dartmouth

According to NBC 10 in Providence, a Dartmouth man was arrested on drug and firearm charges after police conducted a traffic stop over the weekend. The Dartmouth Police Department says it stopped a Nissan Maxima on Faunce Corner Road on sunday because the registration was revoked. The driver, 25-year-old Gary Hamel, also had a suspended license.


While searching the vehicle, police say they found suspected fentanyl and crack cocaine.

The department also claims to have found a stun gun. Hamel is charged with operating a motor vehicle with a suspended license, possession of class A and B drugs and carrying a firearm without a license

NB Former School Committee Member Dies Following Assault

According to ABC 6, New Bedford Mayor Jon Mitchell said Tuesday that a former school committee member died over the weekend after being assaulted in Philadelphia earlier this month. Eric Pope, 41, was the victim of an alleged assault outside of a Philadelphia bar on April 16. He died over the weekend from the injuries that he suffered during the assault. Mayor Mitchell said, "We are grateful for his public service and commitment to the city.” 


Pope was first elected to the school committee in 2001, serving until 2010.

R-I Senate OKs wiretap bill to address human trafficking

STATE HOUSE – The Senate today approved legislation sponsored by Senate Judiciary Committee Chairwoman Cynthia A. Coyne to allow wiretaps for suspected human trafficking investigations.

Chairwoman Coyne’s bill (2022-S 2706) would add felony violations of human trafficking to the offenses for which investigators may apply for a court order for the interception of wire or oral communication.

“Human trafficking is a heinous crime that destroys the victims’ lives, and it remains a very real problem here in Rhode Island and throughout the country. Investigators need every available tool to stop traffickers, and since traffickers often work in networks, intercepting communication is very important in shutting them down and bringing them to justice,” said Chairwoman Coyne (D-Dist. 32, Barrington, Bristol, East Providence), who is a retired state trooper.


The legislation is backed by Attorney General Peter F. Neronha.

The bill now goes to the House of Representatives, which is expected to vote Thursday on identical legislation (2022-H 7700) sponsored by Rep. Carol Hagan McEntee (D-Dist. 33, South Kingstown, Narragansett).

New England and Houston trade selection choices

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – The New England Patriots announced today that they have acquired a 2022 sixth-round draft pick (183rd overall) and a 2022 seventh-round draft pick (245th overall) in a trade with the Houston Texans in exchange for a 2022 fifth-round draft pick (170th overall).

R-I House OKs bill to put specific allergy warnings on restaurant menus, enhance enforcement

STATE HOUSE – The House of Representatives today approved legislation sponsored by Rep. Lauren H. Carson requiring more specific allergy warnings on the menus of all food-service establishments. The bill now goes to the Senate.

The legislation (2022-H 7399), which would take effect Jan. 1, would require all food service establishments to include on their menus a warning, in bold red print, that would be developed by the Department of Health, but must include at least the following language:

Before placing your order, please inform your server if any person in your party has a food allergy. Consumers especially vulnerable to foodborne illnesses should only eat seafood and other foods of animal origin, cooked thoroughly. Food allergens can cause serious illness, anaphylaxis shock and death.

“Food allergy warnings are already supposed to be on menus in Rhode Island, but there’s no enforcement, and our law isn’t specific about what it should say. This warning is important – it protects consumers and restaurants alike. While most people with food allergies are aware they should let their servers know about them, having a warning on the menu can be helpful in jogging their memory at the time they are ordering, and can prevent serious reactions and even death,” said Representative Carson (D-Dist. 75, Newport.)

The bill would require the Department of Health to develop a system to inspect every licensed restaurant’s menu digitally or in person to ensure compliance. Any restaurant that fails to provide the warning would receive a written warning for the first violation, and a fine of up to $500 for each subsequent offense.

Houck, Crawford put on restricted list; Cora out again

Right-handers Danish, Schreiber added to Major League roster
April 25th, 2022

Ian Browne
Ian Browne

TORONTO -- As the Red Sox arrived in Toronto for a four-game series Monday, they regained backup catcher Kevin Plawecki but were still without manager Alex Cora, who remains back in Boston recovering from COVID-19.

Plawecki returned to the roster and was in the starting lineup one week after he tested positive. Once again, bench coach Will Venable served as acting manager in place of Cora.

In addition, the Red Sox placed right-handers Tanner Houck and Kutter Crawford on the restricted list and added righties Tyler Danish and John Schreiber to the active roster Monday.

Prior to the start of the 2022 season, Canada’s restrictions on allowing individuals unvaccinated against COVID-19 into the country led MLB and the MLB Players Association to agree to permissible roster modifications for games in Toronto. There is no required minimum or maximum stay on the restricted list.

Houck has stated publicly that he is not vaccinated against COVID-19. The Sox didn’t give a reason for placing the two pitchers on the restricted list.

Garrett Whitlock will start in place of the 25-year-old Houck for the finale of this four-game series Thursday in Toronto. The power righty was stellar in his first MLB start at Tropicana Field last weekend, firing four shutout innings while allowing one hit and no walks while striking out seven.

Knowing that Houck wouldn’t be coming to Toronto, Venable had him pitch out of the bullpen in Sunday’s 5-2 loss to the Rays. Houck fired 1 2/3 perfect innings and will likely start at some point this weekend in Baltimore.

Crawford owns a 9.00 ERA over five relief appearances. He has 11 strikeouts and six walks in seven innings.

The Red Sox have known for weeks that the two righties wouldn’t be in Toronto, so they’ve been able to plan accordingly.

“Well, we have Danish and Schreiber, who will be here and active tonight, and they are two great arms that we are really confident in and excited that they can help us out for this series,” Venable said. “You go with what you’ve got and make the adjustment, and Danish and Schreiber will be available and active and throw big innings for us in this series.”

It has been a topsy-turvy week for the Red Sox, starting with Plawecki and two staff members testing positive for COVID-19 on April 18, followed by Christian Vázquez and Jonathan Araúz the next day. Of those three players, only Araúz remains on the COVID-19 IL.

Cora found out just minutes before the homestand finale April 21 that he had tested positive.

Monday is his fifth straight game away from the team.

“A.C. is doing well. Better and better every day,” Venable said. “Still going through the protocol and still kind of day to day. Just not here today, and that’s as far as I know.”

Venable has been working with the rest of the coaching staff to fill the big shoes of the team’s highly touted manager. Venable has been in frequent contact with Cora.

“It’s baseball as usual,” Venable said. “Just unfortunately, we don’t have our jefe here to do all the things that we love that he does, but for me personally I still have things I have to do for my role, and like I said before the other staff has been amazing and kind of picking up some of the things I’ve left behind.”

Bristol and RIC Make A Deal

New Bristol Community College and Rhode Island College transfer agreement simplifies the path to a bachelor’s degree   


Bristol Community College and Rhode Island College (RIC) have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) agreement that creates an efficient and cost-saving pathway for students transferring from Bristol to RIC to complete their bachelor's degree.
The MOU agreement, which will go into effect in Fall 2022, was celebrated at Rhode Island College on Monday, April 25, 2022, with a ceremonial signing by Dr. Laura L. Douglas, President, Bristol Community College; Dr. Frank D. Sánchez, President, Rhode Island College and a brief speaking program featuring representatives from each institution. 


“This collaboration is an excellent extension of Bristol Community College and Rhode Island College’s shared mission of furthering access to higher education,” said Dr. Laura L. Douglas, President, Bristol Community College. “This cost-saving pathway will also combine the support and resources of both institutions, simplifying the transition to earn a bachelor's degree, while aiding student success. 


“Both of our institutions are committed to putting educational and career success within reach for more students,” said Dr. Frank D. Sánchez, President, Rhode Island College. “This agreement creates a clear and affordable pathway from the quality programs at Bristol Community College to the social mobility made possible with a four-year degree from Rhode Island College.” 

The innovative transfer agreement will establish “2+2 programs,” in a variety of subjects, enabling students to attend Bristol for two years and complete an associate degree before seamlessly transferring all their college credits to RIC, where they will complete their bachelor's degree within a combined total of 4 years. The institutions have established “2+2 programs” in the subjects of dental hygiene, communication, psychology, and theatre, while equivalent programs in biology, environmental studies, secondary education and social work are in development. 

Students who begin at Bristol, before transferring to RIC to complete their degree, will experience significant cost savings in tuition and fees, compared to beginning at a four-year institution. Students from Northeast states, such as Massachusetts, qualify for the “Northeast Neighbors” special tuition rate that is comparable, or in some cases more affordable, to a student’s in-state college or university tuition.

The Latest COVID-19 Numbers in MA

According to the digital edition of the Boston Globe, Massachusetts on Friday reported just over 2,300 new confirmed Coronavirus cases and said over 13,000 vaccinations, including booster shots, had been administered. The Department of Public Health also reported 2 new confirmed deaths.


The state reported that 389 patients were hospitalized for COVID-19 with the seven-day percent positivity at 4.56%.

Fall River Drunk Driver Arrested

According to NBC 10 in Providence, a Fall River man is accused of driving drunk in Rehoboth yesterday afternoon. Police received a call about an erratic driver at about 3:30 p.m. in the area of Route 44 at Winthrop Street. Officials said the black Jeep Cherokee almost hit a curb turning onto the road. Officers arrested 34-year-old Jordan Correia of Fall River without incident. Correia was charged with operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of an intoxicating liquor, second offense, negligent operation of a motor vehicle, and a marked lanes violation.


He is scheduled to appear in Taunton District Court on Friday.

Pollution in Bristol County

According to CBS 12 in Providence,  the American Lung Association is reporting more than 40% of Americans for a total over 137 million people, are living with unhealthy air, and while Southern New England is doing well in some areas, the report shows some still much-needed room for improvement. Providence County and Bristol County Massachusetts, known as the two most densely populated areas in the region, received failing grades for ozone levels. According to the American Lung Association, between the two counties, the failing grades potentially put over 1.2 million residents at risk. The report lists people with asthma, and lung cancer, children under 18, adults over 65, and people of color as at-risk residents.


Although both counties received failing grades for high ozone levels, they were given passing grades for particle pollution. To combat unhealthy air quality, the American Lung Association says to clean up air pollution and address climate change.

Jasiel Correia II Will Report to NH Friday

This is the text from the court issued this afternoon. 

United States Court of Appeals
For the First Circuit
No. 21-1823
Defendant - Appellant.
Lynch, Howard and Kayatta,
Circuit Judges.
Entered: April 20, 2022

After careful review of the parties' filings, in view of the standard set forth in 18 U.S.C.
§ 3143(b), the "Defendant-Appellant's Motion for Continued Release Pending Disposition of
Appeal" is denied. The self-surrender date currently scheduled remains in effect.
So ordered.

By the Court:
Maria R. Hamilton, Clerk

JCIIs Defense Team Goes Before The First Circuit Court of Appeals

The Boston-based Defense Team for Convicted Former Fall River Mayor Jasiel Correi has filed an 11-page brief with the First Circuit of Appeals seeking delay the self-surrender date that is set for this Friday, April 22, before noon.


Defense Attorney William Fick continues to argue before the First Circuit Court of Appeals that Correia has ''raised substanital issues about the insufficiency of the evidence relevant to every count for which he was convicted''.


Correia's Defense Team argues that statements made by Defense Attorney Kevin Reddington regarding not splitting the case into seperate trials were made without his client in the room. 


Defensea Attorney Fick also maintains that Correia should have a new trial on the counts on which he was convincted in 2021, pointing again to a piece of video that was shown to the jury of a Correia Sutter Mayoral Debate in whcih Correia stressed his business acunem regarding the Sno Owl App. 


A Message From The UMass Dartmouth Chancellor

.A Degree is more than a Piece of Paper
By Dr. Mark Fuller
A decade ago, Erin Costa Noonan found her passion for nursing as a student at Bristol Community College. After graduating and serving as a Registered Nurse for many years, she decided to take the next step in her journey and pursue her doctoral degree at UMass Dartmouth. 

She could never have imagined what her life would look like today as an ICU nurse at St. Luke’s Hospital. But despite the challenges of completing her coursework while working at the frontlines of healthcare during a global pandemic, Erin’s future has never been brighter. In May, she will graduate with her Doctorate in Nursing Practice, launching a new chapter of her career that reinforces the tremendous value of public higher education. Erin’s story is powerful, and it is one of many examples of student success, movement, and empowerment across the membership of CONNECT, a consortium of public higher education partners in Southeastern Massachusetts. 
Yet, many people across the country do not believe in the value proposition of college.
The data clearly shows that a college degree is a positive force for social mobility and economic security, especially within marginalized communities. Particularly in a post-COVID economy, where the employment opportunities are constantly changing, higher education is still a game-changer for many. The demand for college graduates is at a fever pitch, and when students persist through graduation, it has a tremendous impact on their lifetime earnings. At the CONNECT institutions, we see firsthand these kinds of positive outcomes. Across our network, our graduates are bringing vibrancy, talent, and innovation to the region. The contributions of our graduates are hugely significant to the economy and our communities. 
But the barriers to entry and persistence are still too high, and we must collectively do more to increase access into and through higher education.
That work cannot begin early enough. Students in PK-12 classrooms need to get excited about and interested in the possibilities that await them. An effective strategy must improve pathways from the high school into the college environment, and CONNECT partners are working to strengthen our relationships with area superintendents to find new and creative ways to link our learning communities.
CONNECT is already doing so much to ease the transition from high school to community college to four-year institutions. UMass Dartmouth has a unique partnership with Bristol Community College and Diman Regional Vocational Technical High School in Fall River to create a college access pathway in engineering that allows students to work toward a college degree while completing their high school requirements for graduation simultaneously. These types of innovative and integrated approaches that expand our collective reach and make it easier for students to advance their educational journey will be essential as we look to increase the number and diversity of talented students that graduate each year. 
For these students—for students like Erin—a degree from a public institution like ours is a gateway for opportunity. Let’s open the door for more students to come through.
Dr. Mark Fuller is the Chancellor of the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth and a 13-year veteran of the University of Massachusetts system.

Celtics Celebrate the All Defense Award

BOSTON, MA – Celtics guard Marcus Smart has been named the 2021-2022 KIA NBA Defensive Player of the Year, the NBA announced today. Smart, currently the team’s longest-tenured player in his eighth season with the Celtics, becomes the first guard to win the league’s annual honor since Gary Payton in 1995-96.

Smart finished the year ranked sixth in the NBA in steals per game (1.7), and fifth in defensive win shares (10.3), anchoring a Celtics defense that led the NBA with a defensive rating of 106.2 in 2021-22. He ranked ninth in the NBA and was fifth amongst all guards with a defensive rating of 105.2, while finishing first in the league with 1.1 loose balls recovered per contest.

In being named the league’s top defensive player, Smart joins Kevin Garnett (2007-08) as the only two Celtics players to ever claim the annual honor since its creation in 1982.

Patriots HOF Finalists

This article first appeared on

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – Three former players have been selected as finalists for this year's induction into the Patriots Hall of Fame presented by Raytheon Technologies. This year's finalists (listed in alphabetical order) are offensive lineman Logan Mankins, linebacker Mike Vrabel and defensive lineman Vince Wilfork. All three players played key roles in helping the Patriots to the NFL's only 16-0 regular season in NFL history in 2007.

Vrabel is a finalist for the sixth straight time, while Mankins and Wilfork are both first-time finalists.

Starting today, Patriots fans are encouraged to vote for the Patriots finalist most deserving of Hall of Fame induction. Fans can vote on through May 16. The team will announce the fans' selection of the 2022 Patriots Hall of Famer on May 17.

This year's inductee will become the 32nd person to be enshrined into the Patriots Hall of Fame. The induction ceremony has historically been held on the Enel Plaza outside the Patriots Hall of Fame presented by Raytheon Technologies. The date and time of this year's ceremony will be announced once it is confirmed.

Beginning in 2007, the Patriots started a new tradition, inducting at least one player into the team's hall of fame each year. The process involves a panel of media, alumni and staff who collectively nominate the players or head coaches most deserving of induction. After the nominations are made, the committee votes and the top-three tallies become that year's finalists. The Patriots then give fans the opportunity to vote online to select each year's inductee. The Patriots are the only team in the NFL that allows its fans to make the final selection for enshrinement into the franchise's highest individual honor. In addition to the fans annually selecting one of the three finalists, every other year either a contributor or a player who has been retired for at least 25 years is added to the Patriots Hall of Fame.

The New England Patriots held their annual nomination committee meeting on Wednesday, April 6, to vote for this year's candidates for induction into the Patriots Hall of Fame. Now it is up to the fans to select the 2022 honoree.

The Sox Have COVID-19 Issues

Ian Browne


BOSTON -- The Red Sox will be without their veteran catching tandem of Christian Vázquez and Kevin Plawecki for at least a few days, thrusting Connor Wong and Ronaldo Hernández into the spotlight.

Vázquez, Boston’s primary catcher for the past six seasons, tested positive for COVID-19 on Tuesday, just one day after Plawecki tested positive. Utility infielder Jonathan Araúz was a second Sox player who tested positive Tuesday.

All three players are vaccinated.

Per updated rules this season, a player can be reinstated from the COVID-19 related injured list after producing two negative tests and no fever. This applies to vaccinated and unvaccinated players, though typically someone who is vaccinated will take less time to test negative.

The 25-year-old Wong came to the Red Sox along with Alex Verdugo and Jeter Downs in the trade that sent Mookie Betts to the Dodgers in February 2020. He got into six games for Boston last season, holding his own with the bat (4-for-13) in his limited exposure to Major League pitching.

Red Sox manager Alex Cora said Wong, a switch-hitter, will start Tuesday and Wednesday against the Blue Jays.

If Vázquez or Plawecki don’t return by Thursday, Hernández, Boston’s No. 24 prospect as rated by MLB Pipeline, would likely make his MLB debut given that it is a day game following a night game.

The timing for Wong’s start Tuesday was ideal because Nathan Eovaldi, the staff ace, was on the bump for the Red Sox.

Wong and Eovaldi are workout partners in Texas in the offseason. In fact, Eovaldi had three starts with Wong last season and had a 2.66 ERA in 20 1/3 innings over those outings. Wong doesn’t have regular-season experience with Nick Pivetta, who will take the ball Wednesday night.

“He’s a good defender. Something about him, he’s very calm. He doesn’t panic out there. His swing plays. He has some pop,” Cora said of Wong. “Last year was a tough one because he was on the taxi squad, got hurt, didn’t get too many at-bats. But he’s a guy that we trust, a guy that the organization recognized a few years ago as part of Mookie’s trade. Last year, he did an amazing job in the handful of games he played for us. He’s a guy we trust.”

Hernández, acquired from the Rays on Feb. 17, 2021, will try to earn some trust if he gets a shot. However, the right-handed hitter doesn’t have the same familiarity with Boston’s pitching staff as Wong, having appeared in just three games as a reserve in Spring Training.

A right-handed hitter from Colombia, Hernández ripped 16 homers in the Minor Leagues last season for Double-A Portland. He is off to a slow start offensively (4-for-28) for Triple-A Worcester this season.

Aside from the Red Sox having their catching depth temporarily depleted, there is also the natural concern that there could be more positive tests in the coming days.

But perhaps no manager is better equipped to deal with a situation like this than Cora, given the COVID-19 outbreak the Red Sox dealt with in the pennant race last season when 12 players tested positive from Aug. 27-Sept. 12.

Those players included cornerstones like Xander Bogaerts, Kiké Hernández and Chris Sale.

“This is the world we live in, and we'll adjust accordingly,” said Cora. “We did it last year. At one point in Tampa, we were playing Jack Lopez at second, Jonathan Araúz at short, and none of you guys thought we were going to split against Tampa Bay, and we did. We’ll play it out and see what happens. We feel confident that these two guys can call the game. They’re good offensively, and we should be OK.”

Next week, the Red Sox will have another situation to deal with when they play in Toronto from April 25-28. Unvaccinated players aren’t allowed to travel into Canada.

Righty Tanner Houck, Boston’s No. 3 starter, has already stated publicly that he’s not vaccinated and will have to miss his scheduled start in the second game of that series.

Cora said the Sox have other unvaccinated players who will miss that series, but none of those names are public yet.

“I think last year was tougher,” said Cora. “Last year, that was crazy. Leaving guys in Toronto and Chicago and Tampa [with COVID] and then trades, and we had no pitching, and Xander coming out of the game in the second inning and [Josh Taylor] in the third, I remember all those events.

“So that was really tough, because it was like in the middle of the game. Here, you know what you run into, you know where you're at roster-wise and you go from there. We know who's going to go to Toronto, so we’re already planning accordingly.”

An F-R Tourism Director?

Members of the Fall River City Council's Committee on Tourism and Economic Development are again urging the Coogan Administration to create and fund a Tourism Director. 

The subject has been debated in the Flanagan, Sutter and Correia Administrations; it was funded in a pair of Flanagan Municipal Budgets but the money was ultimately used for other things. 


The City oF Fall River will also unveil a new website at some point this year that its hoped will sell tourism to a world-wide audience. 


No Masks on SRTA

In a one-sentence tweet on Tuesday, SRTA decided that masks would no longer be mandatory on any of their buses, after a Trump-appointed Florida Federal Judge ordered that mask mandates that were to be reviwed next month be lifted. 


If you wish, you can still use face coverings. 


The Digital Edition of The Boston Globe is reporting the mask mandate has been lifted on MBTA service and in Logan International Airport. 

Rehoboth Commercial Building Fire

According to NBC 10 in Providence, fire officials say the cause of a fire in Rehoboth could not be determined. The Rehoboth Fire Department says its joint investigation with the department of fire services for the fire on park street that destroyed a commercial building and found the cause will be officially undetermined. The commercial strip was the home of Anawan Brewing Company. Numerous breweries came to Anawan's aid by raising money for its fellow brewer. The building was determined to be a total loss.

NB Man Caught in Car Jack

According to CBS 12 in Providence, police arrested a New Bedford man in connection with a car break in Dartmouth last week. Officers were called to a home on Walsh Street early Wednesday morning for reports of a car break in progress. While searching the area, police said the officers noticed 51 year old Joaquim Fortes, walking near the New Bedford line. Police said Fortes matched the description of the suspect. Fortes was taken into custody and charged with felony breaking and entering into a vehicle during the night time and larceny of property valued under $1,200.

AAA Northeast, SADD Partner to Prevent Marijuana-Impaired Teen Driving

AAA Northeast and Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD) have partnered to educate youth on the risks of marijuana-impaired driving as more states legalize recreational marijuana. 

 The primary focus of the partnership is the delivery of peer-to-peer education by SADD’s student leaders utilizing a curriculum developed by AAA Northeast called Shifting Gears: The Blunt Truth About Marijuana & Driving. The curriculum, endorsed by Brown University’s School of Public Health, addresses: 

•    The effects of THC on the developing teenage brain 
•    Research-based information on increased crash risks for marijuana-impaired drivers
•    The physical and cognitive processes affected by marijuana use 
The Shifting Gears: The Blunt Truth About Marijuana & Driving program has been delivered to approximately 60,000 high school students throughout Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, and Rhode Island. 

Pre and post program surveys demonstrate significant attitudinal change; after participating in the Shifting Gears program, 98 percent of teens surveyed agreed that marijuana impairs driver performance, and 95 percent of participants agreed that marijuana affects a driver’s reaction time. 

“AAA Northeast’s partnership with SADD will provide an evidence-based program to SADD’s student leaders to educate their peers, the first generation of American drivers who will be licensed as states legalize marijuana and the drug is more widely available,” said John Galvin, AAA Northeast’s President, and CEO. 

On April 20th (4/20) at 3pm, a web event hosted by SADD will stream on SADD and AAA’s social channels to address marijuana-impaired driving. Speakers include representatives from both organizations as well as Trooper Peter Pollard, a Drug Recognition Expert from Massachusetts State Police. 

Video Recording of Conversation 
“We’re thrilled to join with our longtime partners at AAA Northeast in making this program available to student leaders across the country. Drug impaired driving is a critical issue, a public health crisis that continues to grow. By empowering our students with the knowledge and resources they need to combat this issue, we will make our roadways safer for all users,” said Rick Birt, SADD President and CEO.

Rehobeth Support Group

Bereavement Support Group
POSTED ON: APRIL 19, 2022 - 9:21AM

Our Survey Monkey® indicated a significant request for a Bereavement Support Group. 

COVID has presented so much loss in our community, resulting in bereavement's  presentation in many different forms.

Though our support group will discuss the steps and process of grief based on Kubler-Ross's model as it relates to the loss of a loved one, please feel free to come to the group for support with the many other losses 
COVID has brought to bear on each of us. 

We will meet on APRIL 27th between 9a-11a at the Public Health Nurse's office (White Farmhouse). In the event that we have a large group of participants, we will move the meeting to the ARCADE BUILDING on the Francis Farm campus.
Please call
508-252-6502 ext. 3127 to register
Geraldine Hamel RN MSN
Rehoboth Public Health Nurse
508-252-6502 ext.3127

Red Sox place catcher Kevin Plawecki on COVID-19 related injured list

Club Recalls Catcher Connor Wong from Triple-A Worcester

BOSTON, MA – The Boston Red Sox today placed catcher Kevin Plawecki on the COVID-19 Related Injured list. To fill Plawecki’s spot on the active roster, the club recalled catcher Connor Wong from Triple-A Worcester.

Chief Baseball Officer Chaim Bloom made the announcement.

Plawecki, 31, has played in four games this season, with the Red Sox winning each of his three starts at catcher. The right-handed hitter has batted .297 (74-for-249) with a .757 OPS in 92 games during his three seasons with Boston (2020-22).

Wong, 25, has made four starts at catcher for Triple-A Worcester this season, batting .250 (4-for-16) with three runs scored. The right-handed hitter played in six games for Boston last season, his major league debut, and hit .308 (4-for-13) with one double, one triple, and one RBI.

Gasoline In MA This Week

Massachusetts’s average gas price is down 4 cents from last week ($4.11), averaging $4.07 per gallon. Today’s price is 22 cents lower than a month ago ($4.29), and $1.33 higher than April 18, 2021 ($2.74). Massachusetts’s average gas price is 1 cent lower than the national average.

“As the days get longer, the weather gets warmer, and pump prices dip from their record highs, consumers feel more confident about hitting the road,” said Mary Maguire, AAA Northeast Director of Public and Government Affairs. “But these lower pump prices could be temporary if the global price of oil increases due to constrained supply.”

AAA Northeast’s April 18 survey of fuel prices found the current national average to be 3 cents lower than last week ($4.11), averaging $4.08 a gallon. Today’s national average price is 19 cents lower a month ago ($4.27), and $1.21 higher than this day last year ($2.87).

An Accident in Dartmouth

Police Officers Rescue Two People From Submerged Vehicle
April 16, 2022 by Alia Spring


DARTMOUTH, MA – On Friday, April 15, 2022 at approximately 10:40 p.m., members of the Dartmouth Police Department, along with other emergency personnel, responded to the area of #950 State Road for a reported vehicle in the water.

Upon arrival, officers located a 2016 Ford Focus submerged in approximately six (6) to seven (7) feet of water in Lake Noquochoke.

As the two (2) occupants of the vehicle were trapped inside, Dartmouth police officers Justin AMARAL and Joseph HILCHEY, as well as Officer Jeremy DELLECESE of the Westport Police Department, immediately removed their duty gear and entered the water.

Once in the water, the officers swam approximately one hundred (100) feet out to the vehicle.

Upon reaching the vehicle, the officers were able to effectively assist the two (2) occupants out, and, with the assistance of other emergency personnel now on scene, back to shore.

Subsequent to reaching the shoreline, the two (2) occupants of the vehicle, as well as one (1) of the officers, were transported to St. Luke’s Hospital in New Bedford, where they were treated and released for exposure and minor injuries.

Though the crash is still under investigation, it appears as if alcohol and speed, as well as lack of knowledge of the area, all contributed to the crash.

It is expected that the twenty-one (21) year old North Attleboro man who was operating the vehicle, will receive citations associated with the crash.

According to Dartmouth Deputy Chief of Police, Tony VINCENT, “Had it not been for the selfless acts of these officers, this unfortunate incident could have turned out much worse. Not only do I applaud their heroic efforts, but also those of our dispatchers and the other first responders associated with this crash and subsequent rescue.”

A Reminder from Fall River's Government Center

City Hall would like to issue a reminder that Government Center and the DPW facility on Lewiston St will be closed on Monday, April 18th.

Trash pick-up has been happening as usual today, Friday 4/15. Trash pick-up will NOT happen on 4/18. As a result, residents should expect their trash collection to be delayed by one day for the rest of the week of 4/18.

Massachusetts RMV Announces Road Test Applicants Will Need Own Vehicles as of May 2, 2022

BOSTON – The Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) is informing Class D learner’s permit holders applying for a Massachusetts issued driver’s license that all applicants will be required to supply their own vehicle for road testing beginning on Monday, May 2, 2022. 
Due to the pandemic and health and safety protocols, since June of 2020, the RMV deployed a fleet of Commonwealth-owned vehicles for road tests which were cleaned and sanitized on a regular basis.  The use of these Commonwealth-owned vehicles will end on April 29, 2022. Applicants for a Class M, or Motorcycle license, supply their own motorcycle for testing. Applicants scheduled for testing through a driving school should confirm they have access to the school’s vehicle for their road test. 
“Vehicles on loan from our MassDOT Highway Division partners and other Commonwealth agencies’ vehicles allowed us to continue road testing and licensing in a safe and healthy manner during the State of Emergency and continued COVID-19 restrictions,” said Registrar of Motor Vehicles Colleen Ogilvie. “As we prepare for the transition back to private cars, we want applicants to be aware of our requirements and to be prepared to arrive sufficiently skilled behind the wheel to pass the road test on their first try.”  
Applicants must bring a physical copy of their learner’s permit, a printed and completed copy of the Road Test Application and be accompanied by a qualified sponsor. A sponsor is a person who is a licensed driver over the age of 21 with at least one year of experience driving. Should it be required, the sponsor will be responsible for operating the vehicle if at any point the road test examiner determines the applicant cannot continue testing. 

In addition to meeting the application and sponsor qualifications, the applicant must make sure the vehicle brought for testing meets all functional and safety requirements. Some practices adopted during the pandemic will continue -- license applicants will be asked to keep open windows for ventilation.

Face covering requirements will be dependent on guidance provided by the federal Transportation Security Administration (TSA). All applicants and sponsors are required to arrive prepared to wear a face covering during their scheduled road test and to follow all face covering protocols in place at the time of the test. 

Private passenger vehicles used for a Class D road test must meet the following requirements, (including vehicles with an ignition interlock device, and vehicles with adaptive equipment for a competency test):
•    Be in good working condition and be able to pass a safety check.
•    Have a valid registration and current inspection sticker.
•    Contain adequate seating accommodations next to the operator for the use of the examiner and have a rear seat for the sponsor.
•    Be designed to let the examiner make an emergency stop using the parking brake. If not, the vehicle cannot be used for the road test.
o    Any vehicle with a center console that does not have a parking brake as part of the console cannot be used.
o    Any vehicle that does not allow the examiner unobstructed access to the parking brake cannot be used.

Customers are advised that if the road test examiner identifies any of the following conditions, the road test will not go forward and rescheduling will be the responsibility of the applicant:
•    Road test examiner identifies the applicant and/or sponsor is displaying signs of impairment. 
•    Road test examiner identifies an odor of cannabis or alcohol emanating from the applicant and/or sponsor; including from their clothing or from inside the vehicle to be used for the road test.
•    Road test examiner observes present minor children, including babies in car seats, or animals, other than service animals, which cannot be unsupervised at the Service Center during the test. 

The RMV has a new webpage to help applicants locate all information related to their road test, Mass.Gov/RoadTest. The page includes information on what to expect, videos to help prepare for the road test, links to checklists and applications to increase an applicant’s chance of passing their exam. 


Russian Sactions on Auchincloss

According to CBS 12 in Providence, Russia has sanctioned 398 members of Congress, including Massachusetts Representative Jake Auchincloss. Russia added these lawmakers to their "stop list" in response to similar sanctions the U.S. imposed on Russian lawmakers in March. Tensions between the U.S. and Russian President Vladimir Putin have increased after Russia's assault on Ukraine began in February.


Russia didn't explain in their statement what the sanctions include, but Auchincloss said it likely means they are barred from entering the country and if they had any assets there, those would be frozen. Also on that list was Rhode Island's Representative Jim Langevin.

Ma Unemployment for March 2022

– The state’s March total unemployment rate dropped by four-tenths of a percentage point at 4.3 percent over the month, the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development announced Friday. 
The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ preliminary job estimates indicate Massachusetts gained 21,000 jobs in March. This follows last month’s revised gain of 22,300 jobs. The largest over the month private sector job gains were in Professional, Scientific, and Business Services, Education and Health Services, and Leisure and Hospitality. Employment now stands at 3,651,100.  Since the employment trough in April 2020, Massachusetts gained 600,100 jobs. 
From March 2021 to March 2022, BLS estimates Massachusetts gained 186,400 jobs. The largest over the year gains occurred in Leisure and Hospitality; Professional, Scientific, and Business Services; and Education and Health Services. Financial Activities was the only sector to see job losses. 
The March unemployment rate of 4.3 percent was 0.7 percentage point above the national rate reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.  
The labor force grew by an estimated 2,700 from 3,772,500 in February, as 18,000 more residents were employed, and 15,300 fewer residents were unemployed over the month. 
Over the year, the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was down by 2.1 percentage points.  
The state’s labor force participation rate – the total number of residents 16 or older who worked or were unemployed and actively sought work in the last four weeks – was up one-tenth of a percentage point at 66.0 percent over the month. Compared to March 2021, the labor force participation rate was up 0.8 percentage point. 

Mayor Mitchell Announces Construction Funds for Nonprofit Childcare Facilities

ARPA-Funded Initiative Designed to Support Working Parents, 
Reduce Educational Disparities 
New Bedford, Massachusetts – Mayor Jon Mitchell and City officials are announcing a new funding initiative for the construction or expansion of childcare and early education facilities that are owned and operated by local nonprofit organizations. 

The grant initiative will be funded through the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). It is designed to help address educational disparities among the City’s lower-income populations and support working parents by expanding the availability of childcare and early learning opportunities.
The initiative is the City’s third announcement of investments funded by ARPA, which intends to address economic and public health impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic. 

“High-performing childcare options can free up parents to pursue work and educational opportunities, and make quality learning experiences available to their children,” Mayor Mitchell said. “By using one-time ARPA funds to help expand the capacity of established childcare providers, we will have made an investment in our City that will pay dividends for years to come.”   

The City is seeking responses from qualified nonprofit organizations to apply for grant funding. To ensure quality projects are selected, funding will require a one-to-one match, with applicants paying for at least 50% of all associated costs.

The initiative is designed to kick-start projects that are “shovel-ready” – meaning fully permitted and ready to start construction in a reasonable timeframe, but have a demonstrated financial need.

“In cities like New Bedford all throughout the Commonwealth, there has been a growing and urgent need for a greater capacity of early childhood education and childcare facilities,” City Council President Ian Abreu said. “This is yet another creative way for us to showcase how we, as a City, can lead the way with innovative thinking to expand our much-needed inventory of facilities that support our children and families.”

Since ARPA represents a one-time infusion of federal funds, this grant program is steered toward one-time items, rather than the creation of new programs or the expansion of existing services. Requests for funding to cover general operating expenses are not eligible. 

“The skills that our children learn in the early years of life are crucial for their social, emotional, and academic performance. Those skills hold the key to their success, and to New Bedford’s, because children who are healthy and prepared when they enter kindergarten do better in school,” City Councilor Shane Burgo said. “This next round of ARPA funding will help to strengthen families in their role as their child's first teacher, improve the quality of early learning environments, and expand access to pre-school and childcare.”

Eligible applications include capital projects such as fixed, one-time expenses including the purchase of land or buildings, construction, and equipment. 

Total project costs must be at least $500,000, meaning the minimum grant amount is $250,000.  

An Animal Health Order

Animal Health Order 958-AHO-22 - Poultry Exhibition Ban

In response to the detection of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) in domestic birds in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

POSTED ON: APRIL 15, 2022 - 10:10AM

The Director of Animal Health hereby orders the cancelation or postponement of all competitions, exhibitions, shows, swaps or other in-person events encouraging the gathering or commingling of domestic fowl or poultry in Massachusetts until further notice

Ghost Gun in NB

According to CBS 12 in Providence, a New Bedford man is facing charges after police say he was in possession of a "ghost gun." The 20 year old Joshua Deleon was arrested after police executed a search warrant at an apartment on Locust street. While inside, police said they found a semi automatic 9mm handgun loaded with 15 rounds of ammo, along with more than $2700 in cash.


“Ghost Guns" are illegal because they don't have serial numbers, making them untraceable that can be 3D-printed or assembled by purchasing individual parts or a kit. Deleon is charged with possession of ammunition without an FID Card, storing a large-capacity firearm improperly, possession of a large-capacity firearm, and unlawful possession of a high-capacity feeding device.

The Correia Defense Team Files for A Stay

The Boston-based Defense Team for Convicted Former Fall River Mayor Jasiel Correia has submitted a request for bail pending appeal of his May 2021 convictions to the First Circuit Court of Appeals. 

Correia is set to self-surrender to FCI Berlin in New Hampshire on Friday, April 22. 

Defense Attorneys Daniel Marx and William Fick argue that Correia is not a flight risk or a threat to the community, and that federal prosecutors and Judge Douglas Woodlock made a variety of errors during the 2021 trial. 

Correia is asking for an acquittal or a new trial 

The appeal is now in the hands of the First Circuit Court of Appeals. 


What to Expect at Fenway in 2022

The Boston Red Sox will introduce new Standing Room Only and Event Space areas in the Bleachers inside Fenway Park, with new food and beverage locations when Opening Day happens Friday. 

Fenway will also be the latest MLB ballpark to go cashless. 

Credit Cards and Touchless Payments with stored Cards on Smart Phones will be accepted. 

Those with cash can exchange it for Mastercard Debit Cards that will be despensed at 3 locations in side Fenway Park. 

NESN will also unveil a new studio for pre and post game shows that was built behind Section 39. 


A New Center at UMass Dartmouth

UMass Dartmouth awarded $30M to modernize key learning facility for undergraduates

Funding from DCAMM will provide crucial infrastructure upgrades to Liberal Arts Building (LARTS)

Dartmouth, Ma. – April 13, 2022 – UMass Dartmouth announced $30M in funding from the Division of Capital Asset Management and Maintenance (DCAMM), an agency within the Massachusetts Executive Office for Administration and Finance, to update one of the campus's main academic facilities. The Liberal Arts Building, better known as LARTS, houses some of the largest programs in the humanities, social sciences, and STEM fields as well as several student support centers. The funding will provide upgrades to the building's existing HVAC system to add mechanical cooling to improve the learning environment and energy efficiency.

"This funding will support the modernization of a vital building on campus that serves all UMass Dartmouth students and enables them to contribute to the region's economic, cultural, and educational success," said Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito. "Our Administration is proud to make these investments and support UMass Dartmouth's continued work to train the next generation of leaders."

"I want to thank the Baker-Polito Administration for their continued support of public higher education and UMass Dartmouth," said UMass Dartmouth Chancellor Mark A. Fuller. "In particular, this funding will impact every first-year UMassD student as they take their foundational courses in an upgraded facility that supports student learning. We are ranked second in the state and #59 nationally for social mobility, with nearly half of our students the first in their families to get a college degree. This investment will make a major difference in the lives of our students and educational attainment in our region."

LARTS is the oldest academic building on campus and the most heavily trafficked building by students, faculty, and staff. The building serves all undergraduate students and is home to classrooms, faculty offices, and student-facing services.

"I applaud the Baker-Polito Administration for making this substantial capital investment in my alma mater, UMass Dartmouth, to modernize and update aging campus assets for future generations to come," said State Senator Michael J. Rodrigues, Chair of the Senate Committee on Ways and Means (D-Westport). "With these investments, we are taking long-needed steps to ensure that students on our higher education campuses can continue to learn in modern, technologically relevant spaces, especially as students return to primarily in-person learning post-COVID."

"UMass Dartmouth is integral to the success of local young people who deserve the best facilities to learn, grow and achieve," said Senator Mark Montigny, a UMass Dartmouth alumnus and leader in the Senate for capital funding for the campus. "Today's announcement highlights the commitment of the Commonwealth to UMass Dartmouth, and I am proud to support and help usher further investment into the campus."

"We are excited that the Governor has made a commitment to improving the UMASS Dartmouth campus through this huge investment," said Representative Chris Markey. "The improvements are much needed and will make our university a better place for our students."

The building houses the majority of classes for the University's largest college, the College of Arts & Sciences. The enhancements will replace HVAC systems nearing the end of their lifecycles and provide significant ADA upgrades. In addition, the University will be replacing the roof of the LARTS building to coincide with the mechanical updates.

"We are thrilled to be able to upgrade our academic buildings so that they match the high-quality educational work being done within their walls," said UMass Dartmouth Interim Provost Ramprasad Balasubramanian. "This will serve our faculty and students well for many years to come."

"LARTS is a traditional hub for students from across campus to meet, collaborate, and explore their academic interests," said Dean of the UMass Dartmouth College of Arts & Sciences, Pauline Entin. "On behalf of the entire College of Arts & Sciences, we are very thankful and excited to continue our mission in an upgraded space."


Governor McKee Rehabbing Iconic Building

According to ABC 6, Governor Dan McKee announced a rehabilitation plan for the iconic "Superman" building Tuesday afternoon. McKee said the renovation will cost $220 million. Stefan Pryor, the head of the Rhode Island Commerce, said the building will include 285 apartments as 20% of the 285 units will be affordable to low and mid-income state residents. The building will also include 8,000 square feet of commercial space, as well as a mix of retail, event, and community uses in the 26,000 square foot Banking Hall.


Community leaders have pushed for the redevelopment of the state's tallest building since it became vacant in 2013. High Rock officials proposed converting the skyscraper into apartments with $39 million in state support, but there was no further push on that decision.

Latest COVID-19 Numbers in MA

According to the Boston Herald, Massachusetts reported 1,712 new confirmed Coronavirus cases and said 12,987 vaccinations, including booster shots, had been administered as of yesterday. The Department of Public Health also said 12 new confirmed deaths were reported over three days, from Saturday through Monday. The state reported that 270 patients were hospitalized for COVID-19 with a seven-day percent positivity of 3.42%.

A New Bedford Murder Conviction

A 25-year-old man was convicted last week of Second Degree Murder and other charges connected to the October 2017 New Bedford killing of Angel Camacho, Bristol County District Attorney Thomas M. Quinn III announced.


David Antonetty Almestica was convicted by a jury of his peers after a two-week long trial in Fall River Superior Court of Second Degree Murder, Witness Intimidation and two counts of Assault and Battery with a Dangerous Weapon.  The defendant was ordered held for sentencing, which is scheduled for April 22nd.


On October 4, 2017, at approximately 6:30 in the morning, the defendant and the victim met up in the second-floor apartment of 45 Tallman Street, New Bedford in order for the defendant to sell cocaine to the victim. The victim was not happy with the price and expressed his displeasure. The defendant then stabbed the victim three times, once in the chest, once in the leg, and a slash wound to his abdomen. The stab wound to the chest pierced the victim’s heart, causing his chest cavity to fill with blood.


The defendant then threw the victim down the stairs to the first-floor landing. The defendant followed the victim outside of the building to a street corner, where he had collapsed, and proceeded to strike him with a blunt object and kick him with a shod foot. 


One of  the witnesses described the kick as a “football kick” that was occurred in front of parents putting their kids on the school bus. The defendant then handed out cocaine to the witnesses to the stabbing and told them to shut their mouths, and that they didn’t see anything.  The defendant fled New Bedford to Springfield, MA where he was arrested that evening by members of the Hampden County State Police Detective Unit & Springfield Police after a warrant was obtained for the defendant’s arrest by our office.


Fall River School Committee Meeting Results

The Fall River School Committee approved an operating budget worth nearly $142 million last night during their April Session at the Kuss Middle School. 

THe City Council will ultimately approve the budget for the school department later this spring. 

The seven member School Committee also approved a four year contract for Superintendent Maria Pontes. 






MA Gasoline This Week

Massachusetts’s average gas price is down 7 cents from last week ($4.18), averaging $4.11 per gallon. Today’s price is 25 cents lower than a month ago ($4.36), and $1.37 higher than April 11, 2021 ($2.74). Massachusetts’s average gas price is the same as the national average.

The cost of gasoline has continued to slide due to falling oil prices. The global oil market has seen lower prices since the U.S. and its allies agreed to significant releases of oil reserves. Also weighing down oil prices is the fear of resurgent COVID-19 infections in China and its potential for an economic slowdown in one of the world's largest oil-consuming nations. Domestically, the national average for a gallon of gas has fallen to $4.11.

“The average price for a gallon of gas has fallen near or below $4 in much of the country,” says Mary Maguire, Director of Public/Government Affairs. "And these lower prices may be a boon to drivers hitting the road more as warmer weather returns."

AAA Northeast’s April 11 survey of fuel prices found the current national average to be 7 cents lower than last week ($4.18), averaging $4.11 a gallon. Today’s national average price is 22 cents lower a month ago ($4.33), and $1.26 higher than this day last year ($2.85).

The Somerset Results

Jacob Vaught scored a win Tuesday Night over Incumbent Somerset Selectwoman Kathy Souza in a race for a 3-year-term on the Somerset Board of Selectmen, as Vaught secured 1,405 votes to Soua's 1,131.


Kimberly Ferriera and Christine Courville secured 3 year terms on the Somerset K-8 School Committee, while Lloyd Mendes has a 5 year term on the Somerset Planning Board in his first successful run for office. 


Freetown Women Shoots Property Manager with Pellet Gun

According to CBS 12 in Providence, a Freetown woman was arrested Thursday afternoon after firing shots from a pellet gun at her property manager. Jennifer Norris, 42, was arrested and charged with vandalism of property, disturbing the peace and assault by means of a dangerous weapon on a person over 60. Police said officers responded to an apartment on South Main Street after learning that a tenant, later identified as Norris, had fired three shots at the property manager.


Police arrested Norris and searched her apartment, where they found the pellet gun. Norris was arraigned and released on a thousand dollar bail.

Home on Fire in New Bedford

According to CBS 12 in Providence, seven people were forced from their home this morning after a fire broke out in New Bedford. Fire crews responded to the triple-decker on Sidney street just before 1 A.M. Flames were seen shooting from the roof that had already been charred from the fire. Fire Chief Scott Kruger says it appears the fire started on the third floor and spread rapidly.


All seven residents were asleep when the fire broke out but all got out safely including all but one pet. The seven adults and one infant are now being assisted by the Red Cross. The cause of the fire is unknown and is currently being investigated.

UMass Dartmouth announces student speakers for 2022 Commencement Ceremonies

The Class of 2022 student speakers to tell stories of personal and academic success

Dartmouth, Ma. – April 8, 2022 – UMass Dartmouth has announced the student speakers for the Class of 2022 Commencement Ceremonies on May 6 and May 9. 

The schedule for the weekend is as follows:

Friday, May 6, 2022 – Cressy Field on the UMass Dartmouth campus

•    Class of 2022 Ceremony I - Undergraduate and Graduate students from the School for Marine Science & Technology, College of Engineering, and Charlton College of Business at 9 a.m.

•    Class of 2022 Ceremony II - Undergraduate and Graduate students from the College of Visual & Performing Arts, College of Nursing & Health Sciences, and College of Arts & Sciences at 3 p.m.


Monday, May 9, 2022 – Main Auditorium on the UMass Dartmouth campus
•    UMass Law Class of 2022 Ceremony at 10 a.m.


The University is also excited to announce the student commencement speakers for each ceremony.

Class of 2022 Ceremony I

Narcisse Kunda
Narcisse Kunda (Marlborough, Mass.) is a management (organizational leadership concentration) and marketing dual-major in the Charlton College of Business, student-employee of five on-campus jobs, five-time Chancellor’s List student (minimum 3.8 GPA), student government leader, and member of eight different student organizations on campus. An immigrant of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Narcisse and his family moved to the United States speaking no English in 2015. Narcisse was twice been elected to represent the UMass Dartmouth student body on the University of Massachusetts Board of Trustees. This year, he is serving as the student representative on the Campus Climate Steering Committee, University Budget Review Board, and the Diversity Council. Narcisse is also a student ambassador for the Charlton College of Business, the Vice President of the Class of 2022, and has been an active member of Collegiate DECA and the National Society of Black Engineers. Impassioned to give back to his community, Narcisse has led a variety of community service projects through the Leduc Center for Civic Engagement and served as manager of UMassD’s on-campus food pantry. This past summer, Kunda worked as IT Project Management Intern at State Street, where he will begin his professional career as a Senior Associate in July.  

Class of 2022 Ceremony II

Thais Sousa

Thais Sousa (Fall River, Mass.) has been a registered nurse for 12 years and will be receiving her Doctor of Nursing Practice: Nurse Practitioner this year. For the last five years, Thais has balanced life as a mother, wife, Transitional Care Unit nurse, and doctoral student. Before that, she came to the U.S. from Brazil at 18 and began learning to speak English. Her nursing educational journey started a few years later when she enrolled at Bristol Community College. Thais completed her undergraduate degree in Nursing at UMass Dartmouth in 2017 and began her doctoral studies soon after.As a nurse in Fall River, Thais has assumed progressive responsibility from staff nurse to overseeing care in the cardiac unit. As someone fluent in Portuguese and Spanish, she was able to translate for patients as well. Thais is also a member of the Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society for nurses and the American Nurses Association. Her doctoral capstone research project inspired her passion for helping vulnerable populations such as mothers experiencing Substance Abuse Disorder. For Thais, nursing is her opportunity to give back to the community. Through her preparation at UMassD, she feels prepared to improve the lives of those in need.

UMass Law Class of 2022 Ceremony

Joseph Spadoni
Joseph Reynold Spadoni (Norwood, Mass.) relished his time at UMass Law where served as an Academic Fellow under the guidance of Professor Amy Vaughan-Thomas, as a Contract Law and Law Review Note Writing teaching assistant to Professor Jeremiah Ho, and as a Constitutional Law teaching assistant to Professor Dwight Duncan. He was elected as the Executive Notes Editor of the UMass Law Review, where he was able to work with the most remarkable group of Associate Editors. Joseph worked as a judicial intern at the Superior Court in Dedham, Massachusetts, with Judge Mark A. Hallal, and after graduating, Joseph will be working as a judicial law clerk at the Massachusetts Appeals Court. Additionally, Joseph’s first piece of scholarship, The Unconscionability of the NFL’s Franchise Tag, was published in the University of Denver Sports & Entertainment Law Journal. Before enrolling at UMass Law, Joseph received a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy at the College of the Holy Cross in 2016. 

Learn more about UMass Dartmouth’s 2022 Commencement Ceremonies.

(Photo Left to Right): Narcisse Kunda, Thais Sousa, Joseph Spadoni


UMass Dartmouth is a national research university dedicated to engaged learning and innovative research resulting in personal and lifelong student success. The University offers 55 undergraduate majors, 33 graduate programs, and 14 doctoral programs and serves as an intellectual catalyst for economic, social, and cultural transformation on a global, national, and regional scale. Follow UMassD on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Visit to learn more. 


Judge Woodlock Explains

In a 16 page posting this week, Federal Judge Douglas Woodlock explained why convicted Former Fall RIver Mayor Jasiel Correia has so far avoided a trip to FCI-Berlin in New Hampshire, where Correia is now to self-surrender on the afternoon of Friday April 22. 


Woodlock explained that Correia was not a flight risk or a danger to the community, and that he had a right to assist his Boston-based Defense Team with an appeal of his 2021 conviction, which earned him a six year term in a minimum security facility. 

Correia also conivinced the court that he was needed at his in laws upscale steak house in Fall River during the holiday season. 


Woodlock also made it known he did not want to send anyone where COVID-19 was an issue, as FCI Berlin only recently allowed prisoners to have visitors. 

Fall River School Committee and City Council Meet

While the Fall River School Committee's CFO pledged that Cost Center Budgeting would be the norm for the Fiscal Year 2024 budget, the members of the Fall River City Council had questions about how ARPA dollars would be used in the Fiscal Year 2023 Municipal version, during a three hour long session in Government Center Thursday Night. . 


Fall River Mayor and School Committee Chair Paul Coogan indicated during the session last night that some of the ARPA dollars would be used to cushion the blow of the Durfee Debt Exclusion that was to be part of the FY 2023 budget, and that an ARPA Director was hired this week to help the city make decisions on dollars that are to be spent by 2026. 

Lost Evidence at FRPD

According to CBS 12 in Providence, Fall River Police have lost at least two years of drug-case evidence, a revelation its interim Chief has called "an embarrassment" and one that deals another blow to the embattled department's reputation. Interim Chief Paul Gauvin revealed the debacle in a letter sent to Bristol County District Attorney Thomas Quinn on March 23, explaining that controlled-buy logs for 2019 and 2020 have gone missing. The information was then relayed to Defense Attorneys, and Quinn said he's now investigating the matter. The information that is often used to obtain search warrants and support court cases would typically detail how much cash was used, when and where the purchase happened and what drugs were acquired. but that information is now gone for 2019 and 2020, according to gauvin.


The logs were found to be missing last May, roughly one month after former Detective Joshua Robillard came under investigation over his allegations. The latest issue is again raising the specter that ongoing and past criminal prosecutions could be affected.

Three Arrested on Drug Charges in Dartmouth Motel

According to CBS 12 in Providence, police arrested three people Tuesday following a narcotics investigation at a Dartmouth motel. Justin Reilly, 42, Michael Moniz, 39, who are both of Taunton, and Felicia Munroe, 30, of Berkley were taken into custody on a variety of charges. Police said Reilly was in possession of approximately 12 grams of suspected cocaine, 10 grams of suspected heroin, two grams of suspected crack cocaine, adderall and suboxone tablets and more than $500 in cash. Moniz was in possession of one gram of heroin and one gram of crack cocaine.


Reilly was charged with four counts of possession with intent to distribute a Class B substance and one count of possession with intent to distribute a Class A substance while Moniz was charged with possession of a Class B substance and possession of a Class A substance. Munroe was arrested on an outstanding warrant.

City of Fall River Water Flushing Program



To begin on April 18th, 2022 from 8:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and ending
 June 10th, 2022.  We may also flush nights during these weeks starting from 9:00 p.m. to 1:00 a.m.

Residents may experience some temporary discoloration of their water during flushing operations.

As a precaution please check your water before washing laundry.

The Department apologizes for any inconvenience this may cause; however, this is a vital part of our annual water distribution system maintenance program.

Any questions, please feel free to contact the Department    
at 508-324-2721


Dartmouth Keeps the Indian Symbol

Dartmouth hosted its annual town election yesterday with different categorized board members up for selection as well as the disputed question of the Dartmouth High School logo and the town's Indian symbol. The ballot asked voters via a non binding public opinion advisory question towards the end of their ballots if they supported keeping the Indian symbol from the town and schooling symbols. Debates filled social media to local conversations but when the voter finally got to step into the ballot booths, they stated that they do support the symbol and voted to keep it with roughly 77 percent of the 52 hundred votes submitted answer in favor to keep the town's logo.

Bristol County Cold Case Rape Suspect

After an extensive investigation by Bristol County District Attorney Thomas M. Quinn III’s Cold Case Unit and New Bedford Police detectives, a 47-year-old former Dartmouth man currently serving a prison sentence in Texas was indicted last week for a string of sexual assaults which occurred in New Bedford in 2013.

Orlando Robles was indicted by a Bristol County Grand Jury last week on the following charges:

1.    Three counts of Rape
2.    Two counts of Assault with Intent to Rape
3.    One count of Kidnapping
4.    One count of Indecent Assault and Battery on a Person Over the Age of 14
5.    Two counts of Assault and Battery
6.    One count of Use of a Motor Vehicle During a Felony

“I’m very pleased to announce this defendant was indicted by the Grand Jury for a series of sexual assaults that put the community at fear due to the violent and random nature of the attacks. This investigation once again highlights the efforts of our Cold Case Unit, working cooperatively with New Bedford Detective Stephen Taylor, to solve these very serious crimes,” District Attorney Quinn said. “Our Cold Case Unit will continue to review and investigate homicides and violent sexual assaults that remain unsolved by utilizing all investigative means, including advanced DNA technology.”

In June and July of 2013, four women were brutally assaulted in New Bedford.  

In the first incident, on June 7, 2013, at approximately 10 PM, a 19-year-old woman was walking on County Street near Weld Street in New Bedford when a man in a dark blue pickup truck passed her and then pulled over in front of her.  

The driver called out to get her attention and asked her if she wanted a ride.  The man told her he was driving in the same direction she was walking and was going to pick up his daughter.  Thinking she could trust him, the woman got in the truck.   The man did not stop where the woman was going but proceeded to drive to various other parts of the north end of New Bedford and into Dartmouth, including the airport.  At one point he stopped and said: “Time to get out, I need to see.”  

Sensing something was wrong, the woman tried to get out of the car, but the man pulled her back in.  He put his hands around her neck and began to strangle her.  He tried putting his hands in her pants but was unable to do so.  He punched her in the head multiple times.  Finally, the woman was able to break free, and exit the truck.  The man continued to attack her, holding her down on the ground while she pleaded with him to stop and he continually told her “Shut up, I told you to shut up!”  The assailant ultimately released the woman, got up, and drove off in his truck.  After she was able to get the help of the police, they noticed numerous injuries consistent with her description.  She provided them with some information regarding the man and his truck, and police were able to corroborate aspects of what she said by observing surveillance video, but they were initially unable to develop any leads or identify any suspects.

In the second incident, on June 29, 2013, at around midnight, a 37-year-old woman, who had been out for the evening in Dartmouth, Fall River, and finally New Bedford, returned home around midnight.  She had called her son shortly before leaving Cork Win and Tapas in New Bedford, the last place she had visited.  After pulling into her driveway on Norwell Street, she reached over for her purse when the door to her car opened.  Initially thinking that it was her son (whom she had called to ask to leave the front door open), she quickly realized she was under attack and a man had grabbed her face with two hands, putting two fingers in her mouth and grabbing her tongue, preventing her from yelling.  As they struggled, the man continued to push the woman back into the car and put his fingers inside of the woman’s vagina.  This caused the woman to fight even harder, and she was able to strike back at the man by poking him in his eye.  The man retreated and ran away.  At this point, the woman’s son had heard the commotion and the two of them chased the man to stop him, but he had gotten away.

In the third incident, on July 7, 2013, a 30-year-old woman was assaulted near her home on Woodlawn Street.  She had returned home after spending some time at the 908 Club in downtown New Bedford and then driving to the McDonald’s on Dartmouth Street.  When she exited her car, she could see a person walking in the street toward her.  She turned to get something from the car when the person, a man, grabbed her from behind.  He grabbed her by the throat and pushed her into the car.  He then put his hands inside of her shorts and put his finger inside of her anus.  At this point, the woman bit the man’s finger, at which point he stopped attacking her and ran away in the direction of Brock Avenue.  

After the third assault, police were able to recover surveillance footage from a video camera that had captured a man running away from Woodlawn Street towards Brock Avenue at precisely the time the woman had indicated.  He was observed to be running and getting into a truck, which appeared to be a small pick-up truck.  Investigation revealed that the truck’s shape and 

Red Sox Season Opener Friday in NYC

Thursday’s Opening Day game in New York has been rescheduled due to a forecast of inclement weather.

Opening Day will now be played at Yankee Stadium on Friday at 1:05 p.m. ET.

Red Sox Roster Moves

Ian Browne

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Red Sox manager Alex Cora made official one of the feel-good stories of Spring Training for his team: Righty Kutter Crawford made the club.

A starter coming through the Minors, Boston’s No. 25 prospect, as rated by MLB Pipeline, was not considered to be in the mix for a bullpen spot when camp opened.

But the 26-year-old Crawford, a 16th-round pick out of Florida Gulf Coast University in the 2017 Draft, earned his spot on the big club with an uptick in velocity pitching in a new role.

“He worked hard,” said Cora. “You know, he earned it. Coming into the situation, probably early in camp, he had no chance probably. I don't want to say it that way, but it was a guy where we looked at him but [thought] it was probably better off [to] go to Triple-A and all that. But he kept pushing and pushing and the more we talked about our rotation and what we're trying to accomplish early on in the season and throughout the season, he made a lot of sense.”

The idea Cora has for Crawford is for him to pitch multi-inning stints, something that will be valuable early in the season given the shortened Spring Training that the Boston starters had to ramp up.

“Whatever my role is, my job is to throw strikes whenever I get handed the ball,” said Crawford. “I’m just looking forward to any opportunity I get to pitch in the big leagues.”

Not only did Crawford surprise the Red Sox, but he even surprised himself a bit.

“I didn’t expect to see the velo jump that I’ve thrown with,” Crawford said. “I was kind of surprised my first outing. I always expect to succeed when I get handed the ball. I have high confidence in everything I do. You don’t make it this far not being confident in your ability. Having the success I’ve had, it’s cool.”

If Crawford can duplicate the success he’s had in Spring Training once the season starts, perhaps he can be this season’s Garrett Whitlock, who went from little-known Rule 5 Draft pick to Boston’s best reliever in 2021.

“With this one, I know everybody's proud. Player development is proud,” said Cora. “The work that everybody put in and this kid is breaking camp with us, it’s one of those accomplishments that the organization feels good about.”

When the Red Sox had their COVID-19 outbreak last September, Crawford was called up with almost no notice to replace Nick Pivetta for a spot start against Cleveland. It didn’t go well, as he gave up five hits and five runs over two-plus innings. Still, Cora was impressed by the way Crawford handled a tough situation.

“I still remember when I took him out that day,” said Cora. “I said, ‘You’re a big leaguer. You’re gonna help us.’ Here's the time he's gonna help us. I do believe he's going to be good for us. He adds a different mix. The split hopefully will play. We’re gonna push him to use it.”

Cora also acknowledged on Monday that 42-year-old veteran Rich Hill will open the season as the No. 5 starter.

However, Whitlock, who got stretched out in Spring Training to battle with Hill for that spot, will also get his share of innings. There’s also a chance Whitlock and Hill could flip-flop roles at times, though Cora doesn’t want to elaborate on that at this point.

“We can be creative in a sense. Both of them, they're going to be a big part of what we're trying to accomplish,” Cora said. “Rich is gonna start that game Tuesday [April 12] in Detroit, that one o'clock game. He’s starting that one. Whit is going to be in the bullpen for Opening Day and he'll be in the bullpen that game [Hill starts].”

In games that Whitlock piggybacks Hill, it will make for an interesting contrast for opposing hitters. Hill has a curveball in the low to mid 60s and a fastball that tops out at 88-89 at this stage. Whitlock throws gas.

“That's something we've been talking about since we signed Rich. We can pair them together,” said Cora. “It’s something that we talked about with Tanner [Houck] and Chris [Sale] before Chris got hurt.”


New Bedford Suspends Enforcement of Paid Parking at Pope's Island

New Bedford, Massachusetts–Mayor Jon Mitchell announced Tuesday that enforcement of a paid parking policy at Marine Park on Pope’s Island will be suspended until further notice, as the City will assess usage of the lot this summer.

The City’s Park Board unanimously adopted the policy after two public hearings earlier this year. The purpose of the policy was to protect public access to Noah’s Place Playground, which was added to the park in 2017.  

In recent years, usage of parking spaces at Marine Park has intensified. The lot has 172 parking spaces, and serves two marinas that together have over 250 boat slips. Given that boat owners commonly invite guests on their boats, the lot is often fully utilized in the summer. Last year, City employees began to observe passengers on the Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket ferries also parking their cars in the lot, evidently to avoid paying for parking in the City’s dedicated ferry lot. These pressures at times have led to cars parking on the lawn of the park itself, an inherently unsafe practice that can also cause damage to the park.  

Anticipating even greater demand this summer, the New Bedford Port Authority and the Park Board worked together to craft a parking policy modeled largely on the summer parking policy at the City’s beaches, which employs a pay-by-phone parking system. By reserving spaces for Noah’s Place and allowing playground users to park free for two hours, the policy sought to carve out spaces for playground users while ensuring reasonable turnover of those spaces so that they might be fully utilized.

However, as many playground users have recently said that they didn’t believe there was a problem with parking congestion, and that therefore no paid parking program was necessary, Mayor Mitchell asked the Port Authority and the Department of Parks, Recreation and Beaches to take a closer look at the policy in light of the public input. After further review and consideration, both departments recommended that enforcement of the policy should be suspended, while they assessed the situation more closely this summer. The City will follow this recommendation.   

RI Legislative Black and Latino Caucus unveils legislative priorities

STATE HOUSE – The Rhode Island Legislative Black and Latino Caucus today unveiled its 2022 legislative priority list at a press conference held at the State House.  The caucus is chaired by Rep. Karen Alzate (D-Dist. 60, Pawtucket).

“Rhode Island’s community of color is still being severely distressed by the COVID-19 pandemic and the caucus has reintroduced many of the same bills we prioritized last year because our residents are in need of crucial supports that are still lacking right now.  This legislative package will address the struggles and hardships that too many of our residents of color are sadly experiencing, and we believe that these bills will address these and many other concerns and hopes shared by the community of color on a daily basis,” said Chairwoman Alzate.

The caucus highlighted the following bills:

•    2022-H 7442, sponsored by Rep. Liana Cassar (D-Dist. 66, Barrington, East Providence), provides for abortion coverage in the Medicaid program and repeals the abortion coverage exclusion for state employee insurance plans.  Sen. Bridget G. Valverde (D-Dist. 35, North Kingstown, East Greenwich, Narragansett, South Kingstown) has introduced the legislation (2022-S 2549) in the Senate.


•    2022-H 7484, sponsored by Rep. David Morales (D-Dist. 7, Providence), expands the Rite Track Program to provide health care coverage to children up to age 19 funded by federal funds, if available, or if not available, by state funds.  Sen. Sandra Cano (D-Dist. 8, Pawtucket), has introduced the legislation (2022-S 2187) in the Senate.


•    2022-S 2243, sponsored by Senator Cano, increases the amount of parental or family leave available to an employee from 13 weeks to 24 weeks in any two calendar years.  Rep. Joshua J. Giraldo (D-Dist. 56, Central Falls) has introduced the legislation (2022-H 7717) in the House of Representatives


•    2022-H 7353, sponsored by Rep. Leonela Felix (D-Dist. 61, Pawtucket), prohibits the courts from setting cash or surety bail on any misdemeanor offense, but would permit the court to set reasonable non-monetary conditions of bail to assure the defendant’s presence in court as required and to protect the community.


•    2022-H 7938, sponsored by Rep. José F. Batista (D-Dist. 12, Providence), specifies and restricts the use of excessive physical force by peace officers and creates a civil action for constitutional rights violations, as well as, imposing a duty to intervene on officers on scene. Sen. Jonathon Acosta (D-Dist. 16, Central Falls, Pawtucket) has introduced the bill (2022-S 2379) in the Senate.


•    2022-H 7741, sponsored by Rep. Anastasia P. Williams (D-Dist. 9, Providence), requires that the state use the actual residences of persons in government custody for redistricting purposes. Such information would be collected by the Department of Corrections and forwarded to the Secretary of State to be utilized for redistricting.  Sen. Ana B. Quezada (D-Dist. 2, Providence) sponsored the legislation (2022-S 2257) in the Senate.

•    2022-H 7931, sponsored by Representative Williams, amends the Law Enforcement Officers' Bill of Rights to provide greater accountability in the disciplinary process over law enforcement.  Senator Quezada has introduced the bill (2022-S 2718) in the Senate.


•    2022-S 2399, sponsored by Senator Quezada, provides for release of misdemeanor arrestees without financial conditions, except for domestic violence, flight risk or obstruction of justice risk.  Representative Williams has sponsored the bill (2022-H 7691) in the House of Representatives.


•    2022-H 7708, sponsored by Representative Williams, creates an alternative ID driving license for applicants without a social security number who are able to establish proof of Rhode Island residency.  Senator Frank A. Ciccone (D-Dist. 7, Providence, North Providence) has sponsored the legislation (2022-S 2006) in the Senate.

            “With so much division and uncertainty plaguing our lives today, these bills will provide a positive step in the right direction toward progress for so many individuals, especially those of color, who are simply trying to provide for themselves and their families or are facing the systemic injustices that are unfortunately still too prevalent in our state  We urge our colleagues to support these important bills that will have a tremendous impact on the lives of countless Rhode Islanders,” said the members of the caucus.


            The caucus also includes Rep. Marvin L. Abney (D-Dist. 73, Newport, Middletown); Rep. Jean Phillippe Barros (D-Dist. 59, Pawtucket); Rep. Nathan W. Biah (D-Dist. 3, Providence); Rep. Grace Diaz (D-Dist. 11, Providence); Rep. Brianna E. Henries (D-Dist. 64, East Providence); Rep. Raymond A. Hull (D-Dist. 6, Providence, North Providence); Rep. Ramon A. Perez (D-Dist. 13, Providence, Johnston); Rep. Marcia Ranglin-Vassell (D-Dist. 5, Providence); Rep. Carlos E. Tobon (D-Dist. 58, Pawtucket); Sen. Tiara T. Mack (D-Dist. 6, Providence); and Sen. Cynthia Mendes (D-Dist. 18, East Providence, Pawtucket).


            The Rhode Island Legislative Black and Latino Caucus (RILBLC) represents and advocates for the interests of disadvantaged people throughout the State of Rhode Island. It seeks to increase a diverse participation and representation in all levels of government. The goal is to close, and ultimately to eliminate, disparities that still exist between white and non-white Americans in every aspect of life.

R-I House Oks McNamara bill to end ban on speech therapy for children over 9 years old

STATE HOUSE —The House of Representatives today passed legislation introduced by Rep. Joseph M. McNamara (D-Dist. 19, Warwick, Cranston) that would include speech pathology under the umbrella of special education.

The bill (2022-H 7273) would provide that for purposes of providing special education services to students with disabilities, “special education” would include speech-language pathology services for students, and the provision of speech-language pathology services would not cease or be terminated solely because the child has attained 9 years of age or greater. 

“Rhode Island is the only state in the union that ends speech pathology for students who are 9 years old,” said Representative McNamara. “It was put in place by the Board of Regents many years ago, and it’s a horrible disparity for children who need those services. The plans and therapies these students receive should be based on the assessments and evaluations of licensed speech pathologists, not an arbitrary age rule.”

The bill is supported by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, as well as the American Civil Liberties Union. Both groups submitted written testimony to the House Education Committee in favor of the bill.
“This restriction is unique to Rhode Island,” said Judy Rich, president of ASHA. “Decisions about services for students with communication disorders should not be limited by a student’s age, but rather driven by a student’s unique needs as identified in the Individualized Education Program.”

The measure now moves to the Senate, where similar legislation (2022-S 2570) has been introduced by Sen. Hanna M. Gallo (D-Dist. 27, Cranston, West Warwick).

Local Airlines Facing Major Delays

According to ABC 6, more than 3,500 flights were canceled nationwide and over a dozen locally over the weekend causing some more travel troubles on Monday. According to Flight-Aware, there were major disruptions at several Florida airports, as well as Baltimore, and New York. Many airlines are citing issues ranging from bad weather, to air traffic control, to airspace congestion. Sixteen flights were canceled out of Rhode Island T. F. Green International Airport Sunday night.


On Monday morning, one flight out of T. F. Green was canceled, heading into Newark. There are currently three flights departing from T.F. Green delayed, including, to Tampa, Washington, and Orlando. Boston Logan International Airport also saw over 110 cancellations this weekend, and more than 50 flights canceled Monday. Most airlines said that operations should be returning to normal, but people are still waiting on hold for hours trying to reschedule.

Cooley Wins Coach of the Year

According to ABC 6, Providence College Head Coach, Ed Cooley was named the Naismith National Coach of the Year on Sunday morning. Cooley led the PC Friars to their first ever Big East regular season title this season. The Friars were able to make it to the Sweet Sixteen in the 2022 NCAA Tournament, before losing a close game to Kansas.


The Naismith National Coach of the Year Award has been given to one men's and one women's head coach each year since 1987.

Text of the Woodlock Decision

Judge Douglas P. Woodlock: Upon review of Mr. Correias opening appellate brief, and after intensive and repeated reconsideration of the record of this case and in particular the transcripts and exhibits at his trial in connection with the parallel proceedings which followed Mr. Correias trial, I am now in a position to rule without hesitation that the defendant should not be afforded continued enlargement on bail pending the final resolution of his appeal.

 He is, however, entitled to review of that determination by the First Circuit. See generally Federal Rule of Appellate Procedure 9(b). Accordingly, as contemplated by Fed. R. App. 9(b), I will allow a reasonable period to permit Mr. Correia now to seek bail relief from the First Circuit itself. Under this extension he must make his application to the First Circuit in a timely fashion, failing which his incarceration shall commence with his self-surrender at the facility designated by the United States Bureau of Prisons no later than noon, April 22, 2022, absent further order by the First Circuit.

The bail pending appeal process anticipates that such applications may be presented to successive levels of the federal judiciary. Given the orderly process followed here, the parties should now be able promptly to present the matter to the First Circuit. While I do not presume to set briefing schedules for the Court of Appeals, I will indicate my view that a fully supported application for § 1343 relief from the Court of Appeals could without strain or difficulty be filed by close of business Monday, April 11, 2022. This in turn would afford adequate time for briefing in opposition and deliberate consideration in the First Circuit before the new self-surrender date I hereby ORDER to occur no later than noon April 22, 2022.

Accordingly, I hereby DENY Defendants motion 328 for continued bail pending appeal, subject to my GRANT IN PART of the defendants renewed motion 421 that I further stay his surrender date as to which, in accordance with this Memorandum, I hereby ORDER to occur no later than noon April 22, 2022 absent further order of the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit.

JCII Reports to FCI Berlin in NH April 22.

Federal Judge Douglas Woodlock is indicating that Convicted Former Fall River Mayor Jasiel Correia is now scheduled to report to FCI Berlin in New Hampshire at noon on Friday April 22. 


Judge Woodlock issued a ruling this morning that, after a review of teh opening appellate beief, and after what Woodlock called ''intensive and repeated reconsideration of the record of this case'', which inlcuded transcripts and exhibits at his trial, judge Woodlok ruled he could still file an appeal with the First Circuit Court of Appeals.


judge Woodlock has indicated that a fully supported application should be filed wth the Higher Court by Close of Business on Monday April 11.


It will not be up to the First Circuit Court of Appeals to decide if Correia will be allowed to remain a free man while his appeal for acquittal or a new trial is being ajudicated. 








JCII Motion for Stay of Surrender

Defendant Jasiel F. Correia, II, respectfully renews his request that this Court stay his
surrender date pending this its resolution—and if necessary, the First Circuit’s resolution—of his
Motion for Continued Release Pending Appeal [D.E. 328].


The government opposes this request.

Mr. Correia incorporates herein by reference his previously filed motions to continue his
surrender date. D.E. 347, 383, 388, 397.

On March 3, 2022, this Court continued Mr. Correia’s surrender date to April 5, 2022.
D.E. 400.

On March 7, 2022, this Court sentenced Mr. Correia’s co-defendant, Genoveva Andrade,
to time served, 12 month’s supervised release, and a $50,000 fine, consistent with the joint
recommendation of the prosecution and her defense counsel. D.E. 407.

On March 30, 2022, Mr. Correia filed his appeal brief in the First Circuit. See United
States v. Correia, No. 21-1823 (1st Cir.). A copy of Mr. Correia’s brief is attached as Exhibit A.
It raises a number of “substantial question[s],” and if the Appeals Court decides one or more of
them “favorably to [Mr. Correia], that decision is likely to result in reversal or an order for a new
trial on all counts on which imprisonment has been imposed.” United States v. Bayko, 774 F.2d
516, 522 (1st Cir. 1985).

Case 1:18-cr-10364-DPW Document 421 Filed 04/01/22 Page 1 of 2
Because Mr. Correia poses neither a flight risk nor any danger to the community, as this
Court has acknowledged by permitting him to remain out on bail before trial and to self-report
after sentencing, see United States v. Zimny, 857 F.3d 97, 99 (1st Cir. 2017), continued release
during his appeal would be appropriate pursuant to 18 U.S.C. § 3143.

Accordingly, at this time, Mr. Correia respectfully renews his suggestion that it would be
most efficient to stay his surrender pending final resolution of whether he will be permitted to
remain on release during his appeal. 

Another Firearms Arrest in Fall River

On Thursday, March 31, 2022, at approximately 6:35pm members of the Fall River Police Department Vice
Intelligence and Gang Unit were on patrol in the Corky Row neighborhood when they spotted several males
shooting at each with toy guns which fire Orbeez (Orbeez are small polymer balls which absorb water and
have a thick gel like consistence). Due to recent news articles and a report of an assault taking place with
Orbeez recently, detectives decided that they would pay particular attention to this area during the evening.
Later in the evening, detectives spotted some of the same males inside of a local convenience store and
watched as they acted suspiciously and spotted what was believed to be a bag of narcotics in the possession
of one of the males. Detectives entered the business and encountered the males, inquiring if they possessed
any weapons. Due to the circumstances present, detectives conducted frisks of the males and found Joshua
Holmes (18 years of age) was in possession of a loaded Glock .45 caliber pistol. Due to his age Joshua
Holmes is not legally permitted to carry a firearm under Massachusetts law.

Detectives are still trying to determine the status of the recovered pistol.
Joshua Holmes was placed under arrest and was charged with felony firearms offenses. 

Mayor Mitchell Announces ARPA-Funded Housing Expansion Initiative

New Bedford, Massachusetts - Mayor Jon Mitchell and City officials are announcing the Housing Expansion Imitative, which will provide from $250,000 to $2 million to developers of eligible housing projects that create new units of mixed-income housing in New Bedford.

The Housing Expansion Initiative will support large-scale housing projects that have a total project cost of more than $5 million. The projects must directly assist in the creation of new units for people with household incomes at or below 60% of the area median income. 

Eligible projects also must fit one of three categories: 1) mixed-income, meaning a mix of income-restricted and market-rate units; 2) mixed-use (residential and commercial); or 3), an adaptive reuse of vacant properties. 

“This initiative will help quality housing projects get over the finish line,” said Mayor Mitchell. “In doing so, it will help to address pressing housing needs, spur economic development and enliven neighborhoods.” 

The program is the City’s second announcement of investments funded by the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), designed to address economic and public health impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The program is designed to kick-start projects that are “shovel-ready” - meaning fully permitted and ready to start construction in a reasonable timeframe - but have a demonstrated financial need.

In keeping with the City’s general approach to ARPA investments, applicants must demonstrate investment commitments from other sources, and show that the project would not be able to move forward without the requested ARPA funding. 

“It’s no secret that we have a serious housing shortage in our community, especially housing that’s affordable for our working and middle-class families,” City Council President Ian Abreu said. “Programs like these coming to fruition, thanks to the American Rescue Plan Act funds, will go a long way to ensure that no family or resident, especially our children and seniors, will ever go homeless here in the City of New Bedford.”
Every proposal that is approved and constructed will be required to provide ongoing evidence that tenants meet income guidelines, and where applicable, that owners meet affordable rent guidelines. 

A one-person household at 60% of the median income, for example, would have an income cap of $35,340. Rent for a one-bedroom affordable unit under the program would have a cap of $818 per month, including utilities. 

For a four-person household, the income cap would be $50,460. A three-bedroom affordable unit would have a rent cap of $1,259 per month, including utilities. 

“Housing is the foundation for family wellbeing,” City Councilor Shane Burgo said. “It plays a critical role in economic opportunity for individual workers and their families. Our City will benefit greatly from the increased housing stock, especially affordable / low-income units. I am looking forward to the long-lasting growth these ARPA funds will bring to New Bedford, to help improve the quality of life and longevity of all our residents.”

The program’s application deadline is May 16. Eligible developers can download a program application on the City’s ARPA website: <>

The Electronic Harden Case Report

The investigation into the November 22, 2021 fatal police-involved shooting of Anthony Harden in Fall River has officially concluded. 

 A final report (with footnotes) detailing the investigation is attached to this e-mail.  However, an electronic version of the report which includes hyperlinks to specific documents, photos, videos and reports can be found at  

During the pendency of the investigation, this office received requests for public records which could not be released until the official conclusion of the case. 

 Now that the case has officially been closed, this office is releasing numerous public records with appropriate redactions.  

These records, which can be found on page 10 of the electronic version of the report, were compiled during the investigation into the death of Mr. Harden. 

 The electronic version of the report also includes some of the records, photos, videos and audio files hyperlinked throughout the document. A collection of the endnotes cited throughout the report can be found on Page 9 of the electronic version of the report. 

Bristol County District Attorney Thomas M. Quinn III issued the following statement today, along with our final report on the matter and the various public records:

  "The independent investigation into the tragic death of Anthony Harden was conducted by seasoned veterans of the Massachusetts State Police and the most experienced prosecutors in our office. 

 The investigation focused on the use of deadly force.  There is no evidence that a crime was committed by the officers. 

 My sympathies continue to go out to Mr. Harden's family for their loss. 

 However, the uncontroverted evidence was that an officer was attacked by Anthony Harden with a knife.  The officer's partner was legally justified in using deadly force to save his life.  

Now that the investigation has come to a close, we are releasing our detailed final report and a multitude of public records, with redactions, compiled during the course of this investigation."

Federal Prosecutors Response to the CCC Order in the JCII Case


v. ) Criminal No. 18-10364-DPW
 Defendants )

 The United States of America files this submission to clarify that the government’s
Motion to Lift Protective Order (Dkt. No. 410), dated March 17, 2022, was not filed at the instance
of the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission (“CCC”). 


In early November 2021, during
preparation for trial in the matter of United States v. Genoveva Andrade, the government
corresponded with the CCC general counsel after defense counsel for Andrade had subpoenaed
CCC records, which included certain records that were subject to the existing protective order
applicable to the CCC (Second Amended Protective Order, Dkt. No. 124, the “Protective Order”).
During these communications with CCC general counsel, the government learned that the
Protective Order had the unintended consequence of preventing the CCC from openly and
transparently conducting certain of its regulatory activities in the ordinary course of its business
because the CCC had refrained from referencing and/or disclosing certain government reports and
information that it had relied upon in making certain statutory and regulatory findings.


example, CCC matters pertaining to certain applicants which would normally have been conducted
before the public in accordance with open-meeting laws, would be conducted in closed executive
session because of the Protective Order. Because the matter of Andrade was still an ongoing trial
matter, the government did not seek lifting the Protective Order.


Case 1:18-cr-10364-DPW Document 420 Filed 03/31/22 Page 1 of 3
In early March 2022, the government learned that a relative of MJ Vendor #4 (see Second
Superseding Indt., Dkt. No. 69) could not proceed in applying for a license because the Protective
Order barred the CCC from disclosing information publicly that was required as part of the
application process.1


 Since the jury trial for defendant Jasiel Correia concluded in May 2021, and
Genoveva Andrade pled guilty and was sentenced on March 7, 2022; and because the need for the
CCC to conduct its regulatory business openly and transparently in the normal course outweighed
the need to avoid pretrial publicity, the government requested that the Court lift the Protective
Order (Dkt. No. 410) after notifying defense counsel for Andrade and Correia that it intended to
do so. Only counsel for Correia opposed the government’s motion (Dkt. No. 414). The
government did not contact the CCC prior to filing its motion.


In preparation for the March 25, 2022 hearing scheduled for the Motion to Lift Protective
Order (see Dkt. Nos. 412, 413), the government contacted CCC general counsel, and confirmed
its understanding that the CCC supported the government’s Motion to Lift the Protective Order.
In addition, the government confirmed with the CCC its understanding that based on the Exception
Order and the Memorandum Regarding Protective Order, issued on March 25, 2022, that “[t]he
Exception Order was designed to permit disclosure by the government to the [CCC] for use in
performing its regulatory duties.” The CCC also recognizes that “if additional disclosures not
covered by its directive were thought by the [CCC] to be necessary,” it will exercise the option to
“seek further direction from this court[,]” and it will do so through a “specific identifiable
modification of the Exception Order.”


1 Subsequent to the Court’s Order (Dkt. No. 416) denying the governm

New Home Inspection Program

(FALL RIVER, MA- March 31, 2022)- The Fall River Emergency Medical Services (EMS)
division is pleased to announce “Fall River Westport CARES”, a home and health assessment
program in collaboration with Westport Fire Department Paramedics. Through a grant from
Bristol Elder Services, Fall River EMS will be providing scheduled home safety and wellness
inspections for Fall River residents who are disabled or aged 65 and older. Home visits are at no
cost to the residents.

During the home inspections, Fall River EMS personnel will assess the home and identify
any potential safety risks- such as tripping hazards, inadequate lighting, unstable handrails,
proper storage of medication, working smoke and CO2 alarms and more. Residents will also be
given a basic wellness assessment through a vital sign check and review of their diet, medication
program and physical mobility.

Based on the results of the assessment, paramedics will provide assistance with minor
changes to improve the home’s safety. Clients will be provided with additional suggestions or
resources based on their assessed needs and will be referred to other community organizations as
needed. Family members are encouraged to be present during the assessment to ask questions,
ensure information is correct, and to help follow through on recommended changes.


“The Fall River EMS Division, with our partners from Westport Fire Department, are
eager to assist our at risk residents,” said FRFD EMS Lieutenant Nicholas Silva. “Proper
planning and preventative education will go a long way in keeping our residents safe, healthy,
and independent in their own homes.”


To schedule a home visit through the Fall River Westport CARES program, residents or
family members can call the Fall River Emergency Medical Services division at 508-324-2744.
The program is set to begin serving residents starting on April 1st
This program is funded in part by a grant from Bristol Elder Services, Inc. through a
contract with the Massachusetts Executive Office of Elder Affairs.

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—is offering testing on Sundays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays, through May 15. 
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.  
Note: Today, March 31, is the last day of walk-up testing offered by Seven Hills Behavioral Health at former Fire Station 11 in the South End, at 745 Brock Ave. 
Seven Hills’ testing at PAACA on Coggeshall St. ended March 30.  
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: 
Thursday, March 31:
-    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.
Sunday, April 3: 
-    Project Beacon at New Bedford Regional Airport (1569 Airport Road) – 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Tuesday, April 5: 
-    Project Beacon at New Bedford Regional Airport (1569 Airport Road) – 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Thursday, April 7:
-    Project Beacon at New Bedford Regional Airport (1569 Airport Road) – 12 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Sunday, April 10: 
-    Project Beacon at New Bedford Regional Airport (1569 Airport Road) – 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Tuesday, April 12: 
-    Project Beacon at New Bedford Regional Airport (1569 Airport Road) – 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Thursday, April 14:
-    Project Beacon at New Bedford Regional Airport (1569 Airport Road) – 12 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Fall River Weapons Arrest

On Wednesday, March 30, 2022, at approximately 11:05pm, detectives assigned to the Vice Intelligence
and Gang Unit of the Fall River Police Department were on patrol in an unmarked vehicle in the area of
South Main and Birch Streets when they spotted two males acting suspiciously trying to draw the attention
of passing vehicles.

 As the detectives drove by the males to monitor the situation, the males moved into the
middle of Birch Street and began waving at the police car, it was then observed that one of the males was
pointing a handgun at officers.

The detectives requested assistance from other Vice Intelligence and Gang Unit members as well as
uniformed patrol officers in order to stop the males in a safe manner. Upon the arrival of additional police
assets, and the original detectives identifying themselves, the two males fled on foot.

In the area of Birch and King Streets officers were able to take one of the males to the ground and recovered
a loaded semi-automatic handgun from the males pocket as well as a knife. The second male began running
through yards between King and Birch Streets and was apprehend by officers in a back yard. Recovered in
close proximity of the male was a loaded semi-automatic firearm.

Once in police custody it was discovered that both males are juveniles and are not permitted under
Massachusetts law to carry a handgun. Both males were arrested on firearms charges, however due to their
age we are unable to release their names or booking pictures.

It was determined that the firearms, a Taurus 9mm and a Jennings .32 caliber pistol had been reported stolen
in 2013 to the Collin County Sheriff’s Office (Texas)

WNE University School of Law to Offer Virtual Expungement and Record Sealing Event

SPRINGFIELD, MA (04/01/2022) The Western New England University's Center for Social Justice (CSJ) will host a Virtual Expungement & Record Sealing Event on Wednesday April 6 from 12:30 p.m. Those wishing to learn more about expunging and sealing records can watch presentations by activists and experts, ask questions, get a copy of their criminal (CORI) record, and/or speak with free pro-bono attorneys in private breakout rooms. 

Registration for this free event can be found at
The Massachusetts Expungement & Record Sealing Virtual Event is presented by a coalition of nonprofits, cannabis industry professionals, and the Center for Social Justice at Western New England University School of Law. To learn more about the WNE University's Center for Social Justice visit


Western New England University (WNE) is a private, nationally ranked, comprehensive institution with a focus on preparing work-ready and world-ready graduates. Founded in 1919 in Springfield, Massachusetts as a division of Northeastern College, WNE's 215-acre suburban campus serves more than 3,700 students, including over 2,500 full-time undergraduates. More than 47,000 alumni have earned degrees through its 90+ undergraduate, graduate, and professional programs at Colleges of Arts and Sciences, Business, Engineering, and Pharmacy and Health Sciences, and School of Law.


 Students come from 39 U.S. states and territories and 23 countries. Of 45,104 living alumni, 30% remain within the region, residing in the four Western Massachusetts counties and northern Connecticut.

WNE is classified among nationally ranked universities in US News and World Report, and among the Top 100 Undergraduate Engineering programs, and in the Doctoral/Professional Universities category in the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education.

Ruggiero bill would create incident response team for cybersecurity breaches at state agencies

STATE HOUSE – Sometime between Aug. 3 and 5 last year, a hacker stole a sensitive file from the computer of a payroll clerk at the offices of the Rhode Island Public Transit Authority. 


But it wasn’t until Dec. 21 that a letter was sent about the breach to the more than 17,000 state employees whose Social Security numbers, names, addresses, health insurance claim information and more were included in it.


Rep. Deborah Ruggiero, chairwoman of the House Innovation, Internet and Technology Committee, is sponsoring legislation that would establish a new state panel to ensure a swift response when such breaches occur within public agencies, and to require timely notification of those affected.


The legislation (2022-H 7883) creates a cybersecurity incident response group consisting of the leaders of the State Police, the National Guard, the Division of Information Technology, the Emergency Management Agency and the Secretary of State. The group would develop communication protocols for when there is a cybersecurity breach at a public agency or body, and make long-term plans for coordinating such reporting. 


The legislation requires that any public agency or body that experiences a cybersecurity breach report it to that group and the Attorney General within 24 hours. The bill also requires the agency to notify the individuals whose information may have been included in the breach within 15 days, and notify credit reporting agencies.


“Cyber attacks are a reality of today’s world, and our state agencies must be equipped to handle them swiftly and appropriately. In 2022, it shouldn’t take months to notify people that their information was included in a data breach. The RIPTA situation demonstrated that our state needs to develop better protocols for cybersecurity,” said Representative Ruggiero (D-Dist. 74, Jamestown, Middletown). 


The legislation also requires any agency affected by a cybersecurity issue to issue a secondary notification to the cybersecurity response group and the Attorney General detailing the agency’s practices to protect its data, including its corrective actions to address any deficiencies identified as a result of the experience.


“I would hope that all of our public agencies are reviewing their cybersecurity policies and making sure they are following up-to-date practices for protecting the personal information that exists in their records. What this bill aims to do is ensure that if a hacker does manage to get through that system, there is already a plan in place for how to rapidly notify those who need to know,” said Representative Ruggiero.