Priorities for Pawtucket

Pawtucket has come a long way since we took office in 2011. On the brink of bankruptcy, the city faced unfunded pension obligations, junk bond status, and very limited economic opportunities.

Today, a dramatic upswing in our financial condition is evident. So much so that Moody’s Investor Services raised the city’s bond rating from Baa2(-) to Aa3, their fourth highest rating reflecting high quality and very low credit risk. This will encourage more investment in the city.

The forecast is brighter, an emergency fund has been restored, and more businesses are investing in the city, optimistic about its future.

Our administration is always thinking of ways to support, encourage and promote the small businesses in our community. They contribute so deeply to our quality of lives and livelihoods, providing jobs, products and services close to home.

Initiatives like Pawtucket Promotes, grant and loan programs of Pawtucket Business Development Council, Community Development Block Grants, city-sponsored Restaurant Weeks and educational workshops are designed to help sustain and strengthen our business community, while helping to attract new businesses to the city.

Our partnerships with the Chamber of Commerce, the Pawtucket Foundation, and the Small Business Administration help us expand even further on these services.

Our students deserve the safest and most advanced learning environments that we can provide. We have made great strides, but there is much more to do to make generational improvements in our school districts. This is one of our highest priorities.

In cooperation with the Pawtucket School Committee, and with voter approval, we completely renovated Nathaniel Green, Potter Burns Elementary Schools, and the brand-new Henry Winters Elementary School. With these renovations complete, our focus remains on completing the Baldwin Elementary project.

This fall, Pawtucket voters approved a $330 million bond to build a brand new, unified Pawtucket High School. A facility of this caliber is what our students need and deserve, and I know that this project will continue to push Pawtucket forward.

My administration has promoted an aggressive repaving plan to update road surfaces and traffic patterns to improve the quality of life of our residents.

Thanks to voter support on the bond referendum of 2018, the partnership of the City Council, and the hard work of the men and women of the Department of Public Works, the city has exceeded 70% of its repaving goal in 2022.

Knowing that these improvement, while very beneficial over time, and cause some short-term inconvenience. We thank you for your continued patience as the work continues and we get the job done.

Together we endured a lot during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, we have not lost sight of the need to continue to promote vaccination of our citizens, to make testing available, and to provide necessary resources as potential impacts of new variants continue to pose a threat.

We remain vigilant at all times of increased gun violence in our community and throughout the country. We continue to work with the Pawtucket Police Department to preempt violence on our streets and safeguard our schools and neighborhoods.

Our administration is advancing the largest economic development project in the city’s history. Tidewater Landing is a mixed-use riverfront development that will be anchored by a professional soccer and event stadium and will include over 400 housing units, commercial space, and riverfront facilities. It promises to restore Pawtucket to the active Rhode Island gateway that it once was.

Earlier this year, we cut the ribbon on our Pawtucket-Central Falls Commuter Rail Station on Barton Street in the Conant Thread District. This major state and federal investment has been in the works for more than a decade and represents a huge advance for Pawtucket’s economy and infrastructure. We are thrilled to have this new development!