Government
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Fitch Ratings affirmed its “AA” rating and stable outlook on Rhode Island in light of last week’s announcement that a settlement reached between the state and public employee unions on pension reform would increase Rhode Island’s unfunded pension liability by $232 million. more
Daniel Shedd, president of Taylor Box Co. in Warren, is optimistic about the long-term prospects of HealthSource RI, the state’s new health-benefits exchange, and expects most small businesses will eventually use it to get insurance. more
With less than two months until the General Assembly begins its 2014 session on Jan. 7, many members of the state’s business community are eager to douse legislators with recommendations in hopes of cranking up the often-sluggish pace of change required to make the state more business-friendly. more
Not long after Rhode Island lawmakers approved a $1.25 million package of new programs to fight joblessness last summer, the state’s unemployment rate began its latest creep upward before settling at 9 percent in November, 2 percentage points higher than the national average and tied for the highest in the country. more
In the five weeks ended Feb. 8, 4,742 people enrolled in private plans through Rhode Island’s health care exchange, bringing the total number of HealthSource RI enrollments to 16,512. Medicaid enrollments totaled 35,821, climbing 80 percent from the 19,941 enrollments reported as of Jan. 4. more
Gov. Lincoln D. Chafee proposed an $8.5 billion fiscal 2015 budget on Wednesday that freezes tuition at public colleges and extends the state historic-tax-credit program. Chafee delivered the budget proposal along with his final State-of-the-State address that focused on education and infrastructure. more
Attorney General Peter F. Kilmartin has filed an amicus brief with the U.S. District Court in support of the Massachusetts lawsuit against the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration seeking to reverse a federal regulation that reduces ground-fishing allotments by 77 percent. more
(Updated 2:10 p.m.) A press conference expected to publicize details of a proposed settlement of the state’s pension battle with public employee unions was abruptly canceled early Wednesday morning at the joint request of state and union attorneys, according to the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service. more
The U.S. Supreme Court will take up a challenge to part of President Barack Obama’s health-care law by companies claiming a religious exemption to the requirement that they provide birth-control coverage for employees. more
With a relaxed, tech-sector optimism, Betaspring has come to embody the Providence startup scene at a time when Rhode Island is searching for an entrepreneurial antidote to the failure of 38 Studios LLC. more
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