The Scoop: Mayoral Candidate Smiley Runs for a Good Cause

Monday, November 11, 2013


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Welcome to The Scoop, the 4 p.m. report on everything politics in Rhode Island – the inside daily report exclusively on

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Candidate Smiley Competes in Veterans Day Run

Providence mayoral candidate Brett Smiley competed for a good cause today as part of the Park View Veterans Day 5k Run/Walk held at Roger Williams Park.

“Participating in the 1st Annual Park View Veterans Day 5k was a great opportunity to support the important work of the Wounded Warriors Project. Nearly 500 of us ran together to raise awareness and funds to help injured service members assist each other,” Smiley told GoLocal.

Smiley’s racing team included his campaign consultant Jonathan Jacobs and Adam Roach, an Air Force Reservist.

Smiley is the founder and owner of CFO Consulting Group, LLC, a successful development, election compliance and advocacy business. He is the former Chair of the Providence Water Supply Board. Smiley also managed the Democratic gubernatorial campaign for former Lieutenant Governor Charlie Fogarty in 2006.

The Wounded Warriors Project provides programs and services to severely injured service members during the time between active duty and transition to civilian life.

2014 Providence Mayoral Race

In addition to Smiley, the current field of Democratic mayoral candidates includes City Council President Michael Solomon, former Housing Court Judge Jorge Elorza, and Lorne Adrain, managing director at Ballentine Partners.

GoLocal first reported last week that State Representative and former Acting Mayor of Providence John Lombardi is also seriously considering running for mayor of Providence. Lombardi, who represents District 8 in Providence, told GoLocal that he is “absolutely” thinking about entering the race and that he possesses "the necessary experience to lead Providence."

The winner of the Democratic Primary will face Republican Dr. Daniel Harrop, who is running for mayor for the third time.


Smiley raised $101,292 in his first quarter of fundraising, and currently has $97,317.71 cash on hand as of September 30. Solomon has $516,773.50 in his war chest—a figure that includes a $250,000 personal loan from the candidate himself. Elorza, a former professor at the Roger Williams School of Law, has $79,784.89 cash on hand. Financial information is not yet available for Adrain, who entered the race last week.

Republican Harrop has $106,110.88 in his war chest—including a $94,000 person loan.

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Related Slideshow: More “Scoops” for Monday, Nov. 11

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Women’s Forum

Rep. Cicilline co-hosts forum highlighting “When Women Succeed, America Succeeds” economic agenda

Dozens of Rhode Islanders joined U.S. Congressman David N. Cicilline (D-RI) and U.S. Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) at the Greater Providence Chamber of Commerce last Friday for a forum discussion on women’s economic issues.

 “I want to thank David for hosting this important forum and having me in Providence to discuss the women’s economic agenda,” DeLauro said. “Women are really struggling financially. They are looking for an increase in the minimum wage, equal pay, educational opportunities to raise their income – to support their families and have a chance for a better life. For women and families to succeed, for Rhode Island to succeed, for America to succeed, we need to ensure women are getting equal and rising pay, that they can take paid time off from work when they need it, and that they have access to quality, affordable child care. Taken together, this agenda can make a profoundly positive difference for women and our entire economy. Both David and I will not rest until it has become the law of the land.”

Cicilline and DeLauro discussed their work to promote women’s economic concerns in the United States House of Representatives. Other speakers included Rhode Island State Senator Gayle Goldin, who also serves as the strategic initiatives officer for the Women’s Fund of Rhode Island, and Deb Masland, a Rhode Island resident who discussed her personal experience balancing work and family responsibilities.

"Policies that ensure equality for women are good for families and our economy, in Rhode Island and across the country,” said Goldin. “I applaud Congressman Cicilline and Congresswoman DeLauro for their ongoing work to stand up and fight on behalf of working women.”

Despite the progress made to promote gender equality over the years, Rhode Island women still earn an average of only 81 cents for every dollar earned by men. According to the National Partnership for Women and Families, only about one out of every ten American employees receive paid family leave through their job, and less than 40% receive personal medical leave through employer-provided, short-term disability insurance.

“Rosa DeLauro is leading the fight for America’s working women, and I am delighted that she was able to join us to underscore the importance of these issues in Providence today,” said Cicilline. “As we work to get our economy back on the right track, it is critical to ensure that all women are guaranteed pay equity, resources to maintain work and family balance, and quality child care services.”

Since his election in 2010, Cicilline has been an advocate for Rhode Island women in the United States Congress, most notably through his original co-sponsorship of Congresswoman DeLauro’s Paycheck Fairness Act and the Equal Rights Amendment – proposals that would ensure women receive equal pay and ensure that equal rights cannot be denied on the basis of gender, respectively. In addition, Cicilline has consistently supported strong appropriations funding for Title X family planning programs that provide breast cancer screenings, HIV tests, and contraception, among other services. Cicilline also joined President Barack Obama at the White House earlier this year for the signing of a strong, bipartisan Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act.

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Heating Assistance

Sen. Jabour calls for immediate release of heating assistance.

Senator Paul V. Jabour has reached out to the Department of Human Services and is calling on others in government to support him in his request to release heating assistance funds immediately.

“People are cold now. Temperatures are expected to drop below freezing tonight. Next week is expected to be even colder than this week. People simply can’t wait three more weeks for heating assistance. They need it now,” said Senator Jabour (D – Dist. 5, Providence).

Senator Jabour has heard from his constituents who are unable to afford heating fuel, and he knows that many others are in the same situation.

“I hear that agencies are telling applicants to buy 50 or 75 gallons of oil to get them by, and wait for reimbursement,” Senator Jabour said. “With prices well above $3 a gallon, many residents don’t have the $200 or more that would be needed to take this step. I urge the Department to release the funds now to local partners in the community, so that they can disburse these funds to the residents who need them.”

He added, “I hope that my colleagues in government, including Governor Chafee and our federal delegation, will join me in supporting the immediate release of these funds. Thanksgiving is too late.”

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Background Checks

Rep. Giarrusso to file legislation requiring background checks for school bus workers.

State Representative Anthony Giarrusso (R-Dist. 30, East Greenwich, West Greenwich) has announced he will file legislation “at the earliest possible date” to require local and national criminal background checks for all individuals engaged in, or applying for employment in, school transportation services in Rhode Island.

Representative Giarrusso said the stimulus for this new legislation was the arrest of 11 individuals by the state police Oct 31 for the possession and transfer of child pornography.

One of the 11 charged was an East Greenwich resident and school bus monitor employed by Ocean State Transit, the company providing student transportation for the East Greenwich School District. Giarrusso’s fifth-grade year old son was a rider on the school bus to which the accused was assigned.

“We have a growing trove of criminal background information available to us, locally and nationally, but we fail to take full advantage of it when vetting those who come into contact with school children.

“When first employed, the bus company required a Rhode Island criminal background check (BCI) on this employee, as is its policy. But this information stopped at the Rhode Island border. The individual may have had a clear record in Rhode Island, but we have no idea if he was convicted or wanted for a crime even in neighboring Connecticut,” Representative Giarrusso said.

“The legislation I envision would require national and local background checks of any individual applying for employment involving school transportation through a private contractor, and immediate disqualification if applicants have been convicted of a sexual offence, possession and transfer of child pornography, or any offence involving injury to a minor child.

“I harbor no expectation that this system will be perfect,” said Giarrusso, “but combining the power of the statewide criminal information check with that of the National Crime Information Center will give us greater confidence that our children are safe in the hands of those employed to care for them.

“The Attorney General is working with schools now to obtain local and national background checks for school employees, volunteers, etc. It would seem a simple task to extend this effort to those involved in school transportation, and that’s the aim of the legislation I will file.

“To its credit, Ocean State Transit has said it will henceforth seek both local and national background checks on its employees and future applicants. But to really be effective, this effort needs to extend beyond a single company or community,” said Giarrusso.


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