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December 19th

Marine thanks girl for letter — 21 years later

December 19, 2011

WOONSOCKET — Tracy Caisse doesn’t even remember writing the letter.
After all, it was in the third grade. Her teacher at the former East Woonsocket Elementary School had told her to write a letter to a soldier in the Gulf War as a class assignment.
When the phone rang two weeks ago, Caisse didn’t recognize the caller’s name or voice. He said his name was Robert Diaz and he wanted to thank her for not forgetting him while he was digging bunkers and dodging Scud missiles in Saudi Arabia.
After 21 years, the ex-Marine had answered the letter Caisse wrote to him when she was eight years old.

Cops round up kids at booze, pot party

December 19, 2011

WOONSOCKET — For the second time this year, the police broke up an after-hours party involving booze, pot and a horde of minors inside the Bonin Spinning complex Sunday.
It was a chaotic scene as police arrived at the 1265 Mendon Road mill about 12:50 a.m. and many of the revelers began scattering on foot or racing through the bumpy parking lot in motor vehicles to escape.

December 18th

Chafee: 'We're making progress'

December 18, 2011

PROVIDENCE — Despite the wholesale rejection of his first budget by the General Assembly and his failure to expand long-awaited pension reform legislation to cover troubled municipal plans, Gov. Lincoln Chafee says he considers his freshman year at the helm of the Ocean State to be a success.

December 17th

R.I. wants to quash lawsuit on funding

December 17, 2011

WOONSOCKET — The legal move by Woonsocket and Pawtucket to overturn the state's school funding formula may be headed for an early court showdown.
Gov. Chafee’s administration recently filed a motion in Superior Court seeking to have the Woonsocket and Pawtucket suit dismissed. Stephen Robinson, the education law attorney representing the communities, in turn responded with a countering petition.

Ornament keeps landmark alive

December 17, 2011

WOONSOCKET – Once the largest rubber mill in the world, the Alice Mill collapsed in a gale of fire this spring, another icon of the city’s industrial heritage laid to waste.
But the landmark lives on as the inspiration for this season’s installment of the municipal Christmas tree ornament. Mayor Leo T. Fontaine says he could think of no better tribute to a site that has touched so many generations of city residents and their families.

December 15th

Schools have depleted taxpayer money

December 15, 2011

WOONSOCKET – There was yet another dose of sobering financial news for the School Department yesterday as Finance Director Thomas M. Bruce III informed officials that its local appropriation of $13 million is exhausted, about a month earlier than last year.
The school department is still due some $4.7 million a month from state and federal sources for the balance of the fiscal year, but Bruce said the depletion of local funds could translate into a cash crunch when salary payouts for teachers and other bills are due.

Congressional office to open at City Hall

December 15, 2011

WOONSOCKET — There hasn’t been a federal constituent service office in the city for well over a decade, but all that will change on Tuesday when U.S. Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI) officially launches one inside City Hall.
The public is invited to join Cicilline as he marks the grand opening of the Woonsocket Congressional Satellite Office at 4 p.m., followed by a small business tour of Main Street, said Raymonde Charles, spokeswoman for the congressman.

December 14th

Anita McGuire-Forcier to lead School Committee

December 14, 2011

WOONSOCKET — The School Committee named Anita McGuire-Forcier as its new chairwoman last night on a 4-0 vote.
Vimala Phongsavanh was named vice-chairwoman also on a 4-0 vote.
Veteran School Committeewoman Eleanor Nadeau, the longest-serving member of the panel, abstained from both decisions.

Schools submit deficit plan

December 14, 2011

WOONSOCKET — A spending freeze, a hiring freeze and the termination of the Feinstein Learning Academy for disruptive students are at the top of Schools Supt. Giovanna Donoyan’s list in a plan ordered by the state’s revenue director to eliminate a $2 million-plus deficit in the School Department’s 2011 budget.
Donoyan submitted the plan yesterday to State Revenue Director Rosemary Booth Gallogly and state Auditor General Dennis Hoyle, in keeping with the deadline laid down by the state officials during an emergency meeting Monday.

Man dies in Bellingham crash

December 14, 2011

BELLINGHAM — A 63-year-old Blackstone man was killed Monday in a two-car accident on South Main Street, across from the Bellingham Middle School, police said.
The victim, Robert F. Kaczor, of 1 Jefferson St., was taken by ambulance to Milford Regional Medical Center where he was pronounced dead following the 5 p.m. accident.
The crash occurred in front of Wenger’s Farm, at 1048 South Main St.

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