Book review: "Harvest Night" and the brutal banality of evil

harvest_night_cover.jpg"Harvest Night" by D. A. Madigan is an unremittingly dark, wrenchingly violent horror novel told with considerable skill and in-your-face brio and all the more chilling because, at its core, it is a story about the slow decay of the American century.

A required warning: This is not a book for anyone who finds violence, especially sexual violence, problematic. Madigan recounts with everyday simplicity the horror that follows from the premise of amoral humans who worship the Lords of the Abyss. This is not a gratuitous element, rather, it's integral to the story, but nonetheless, if you find graphic descriptions unacceptable, this is a book best skipped.

Imagine you move to a small town called Redhaven somewhere in the far Northeast, say, perhaps Maine. You expect a few odd local traditions. Like "Harvest Night," the eve of Thanksgiving, where everyone who has moved to town in the past year is invited to play "Hounds and Hares," a harmless game where evading pursuers to means you get a break on your property taxes. It's about becoming part of the community. The Mayor, the Town Council, and the Chief of Police are on board, so it's all good fun.

Anyone who has actually lived in a New England town will recognize this sort of thing instantly (Cabbage Night, anyone?). It's an example of the deeply ingrained traditions that the region passes down, generation to generation. And it's from this point that Madigan begins: what if this tradition was actually a malevolent performative reenactment of an ancient struggle between settlers who had given themselves over to the service of absolute evil and their innocent victims.

What if *everything* in the town was like this. What if beneath the wooden shingles on their saltbox houses, Redhaven is completely run by human monsters? That they are ruthlessly brutalizing and killing their fellow citizens, brainwashing their own children with torture and drugs, and offering human sacrifices to a pantheon of dark Entities. People outwardly normal, yet *purposefully* evil. As the founder of the town puts it one of the chapter epigraphs, "No matter where you are, no matter what time it is, no matter what is going on around you... if you listen closely enough, you can always hear someone, somewhere , screaming in pain. This is the world we live in -- it is a world of pain and s**t and horror and we are only alive in it for a very short time and when we die, we are gone forever. So while you live, do not be one of those whom can be heard screaming everywhere one goes. Be one of those who makes them scream."

Anyone who has moved to a New England town has probably harbored suspicions along these lines too.

Now suppose that there may be something like an immortal vampire in the mix. Not a sparkly one, no, this vampire is utterly inhuman, and its aims may not always be aligned with the other Entities. And yes, there are some "good" folks too. Some accidental (perhaps a youngster or two who have managed to avoid or survive their cultural indoctrination) and a few from outside the town who have infiltrated under deep cover as part of a so-secret-it-doesn't-exist task force on occult criminal conspiracies. To say more would be to give away much of the plot.

Madigan moves the action along a a brisk pace and judiciously deploys the supernatural, keeping the Lords of the Abyss appropriately offstage where they are always scarier. He brings the story to life by taking us inside the heads of a diverse group of POV characters (some who, frankly, you may find utterly repellent) and intercutting tales from the history of Redhaven to frame the action. The stakes Madigan sets up here are high: from the time these demon worshippers took up residence during Colonial days, they have progressively infiltrated government and society, using innumerable small acts of covert terror to bring America to a state of chaotic susceptibility.

And therein lies the harmatia of those who run Redhaven: Even the totally corrupt can be tempted, and the town elders have begun to see their own brutally brainwashed children as a profit center, without regard even for maintaining their own (admittedly twisted and evil) culture. "Redhaven has sold its generational legacy of conscious viciousness in exchange for vast sums of worldly wealth and power, and the adults who currently run this city are the last generation of the volitionally damned that these families will bring into the world."

As Stephen King famously noted, horror is really a displacement of the anxieties and terrors of everyday life. As we read the novel and spend time as inhabitants of Redhaven, we can't help but see in it a mirror of the centers that have failed to hold in American life: the tradeoffs we have willingly made to preserve our "security," the shallow meaninglessness of treasured institutions, the loss of a sense of possibility for the next generation, the hopeless fragility of human relationships, and the ultimate, existential horror:

“There is no battle of Good vs. Evil. That is mythology... no, it is not even that. It is a fairy tale, a childish bed time story that mundane minds chatter to each other. The truth is much simpler –- there is brief existence and endless darkness, and the darkness is always hungry, and in the end, the darkness eats us all.”

For those who can tolerate this level of unblinking bleakness, there is much to appreciate in "Harvest Night."

Required FTC disclosure: I went to Syracuse University with D.A. Madigan and we occasionally hung out at watched movies at the awesome UU Cinema program, but we hadn't talked in 30 years until we ran into each other on Facebook. I received nothing of value in exchange for this review.

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02871, Localblogging, Review, sf

Portsmouth Water District hikes rate to pay for new treatment plants

14apr17_pwfd.jpgSome Portsmouth Water and Fire District customers will be seeing a nearly 30% rate increase this year, according to a release from the utility. For fiscal year 2015, which began on May 1, the average rate increase will be 28.9%.

According to Administrative Board Chair Philip T. Driscoll, the rate increases are largely attributable to a 19.41% increase in the wholesale cost of water purchased from the City of Newport. The increase from Newport is necessary to pay for the District’s share of the $84 million in debt service required for Newport to replace the Lawton Valley Water Treatment Plant in Portsmouth and to significantly upgrade the Station One Water Treatment Plant in Newport. Construction of the plants began in 2012 and is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2014.

Driscoll also indicated that the Administrative Board has restructured its billing practices. All water customers will be switched to quarterly billing beginning in May of 2014, while a handful of larger water users will be switched to monthly billing. The District will bill one-third of the quarterly customers each month in order to smooth out the staff workload for billing and payment processing. As part of this transition to quarterly billing, in their first quarterly bill only, some customers will be billed for two months of consumption and others will be billed for four months of consumption.

In addition, Mr. Driscoll also indicated that the Board has revised its water rate structure. The Board voted to eliminate the minimum charge that was billed in advance of service, which included twenty thousand gallons of water. Customers will now pay a quarterly base charge and a commodity charge, both billed in arrears, for the water metered during the quarter. In addition, the Board reduced the number of increasing water rate blocks from four tiers to two tiers. The first-tier rate for consumption between one and five thousand gallons per quarter will be $5.74 per thousand gallons. The second-tier rate will be $8.47 per thousand gallons for all consumption over five thousand gallons per quarter. The base charge will vary by meter size and will include the cost for the District to maintain and replace the water meter, radio reader and the curb stop assembly from the water main to the property line. The base charge also will include the cost to process meter readings and bill the customer. For a typical 5/8” residential water meter, the quarterly base charge will be $10.57. William J. McGlinn, the District’s General Manager and Chief Engineer, indicated that the base charges and commodity charges are based on a cost of service analysis conducted by the District and its professional water rate consultant. Although the District is not regulated by the RI Public Utilities Commission (PUC), Mr. McGlinn noted that the cost of service analysis is consistent with the procedures used by the PUC to establish water rates for regulated utilities.

Although the average water rate increase is 29.8%, the actual increase that customers experience in their total annual water cost will range from 20% to 40% depending on their meter size and quarterly water consumption.

For Residential customers:

Use per quarter (gallons) Percent increase Annual cost 2015 Annual cost 2014

5,000 20% $157 $131
10,000 35% $326 $242
20,000 37% $665 $486
25,000 35% $834 $619
50,000 24% $1,682 $1,357

The last annual water bills have been mailed for two-thirds of the District’s customers, with the final bills scheduled to be mailed during the week of May 19th. Because of the change in billing practices, these annual bills do not include the historical minimum charge for twenty thousand gallons of water in advance. Since the customers paid for the first twenty thousand gallons for FY-14 in their FY-13 water bill, the FY-14 annual bill only includes an overage charge for water used over twenty thousand gallons.

McGlinn indicated that the treatment plant work is required to enable Newport Water, Portsmouth Water and the Navy to meet current and future federal Safe Drinking Water Act water quality standards. Since 2000, the three island water suppliers have seen numerous violations of the act’s Disinfectants/Disinfection By-products Rule, specifically for trihalomethanes, or TTHMs. The rules for the maximum level for TTHMs became more restrictive this year, making compliance by the island’s water suppliers very unlikely with the current state of the Newport treatment plants. TTHMs, which the EPA classifies as a potential carcinogen, are a by-product formed when chlorine used in water treatment reacts with organic matter in the raw and treated water. In addition, Mr. McGlinn noted that the new treatment processes at the plants will be better able to treat the water for seasonal taste and odor problems, which have been a source of complaints over the years.

In addition to the increased cost of water purchased from Newport, Mr. Driscoll said that the current and projected annual rate increases are necessary to help fund the District’s operating costs, technology improvements, capital improvements and debt service.

The Board approved an operating budget of $3,749,089, which results in an increase over last year’s operating budget of 13.47%. The Board approved a total budget of $4,063,224, which includes capital expenses, for an increase over last year’s total budget of 13.58%.

The District’s property tax revenue will remain unchanged, with the exception of the revenue from the addition of new properties to the tax roll. The District’s current tax rate of $0.18 per thousand dollars of assessed value will be adjusted up or down based on the final assessed values determined by the Town of Portsmouth following its current revaluation process. The current annual district property tax is $72.00 for a property assessed at a value of $400,000. Property tax revenue represents only 12.8% of the District’s total revenue.

Driscoll indicated that the Board is working hard to properly maintain and improve the water system, while providing fair and reasonable rates for customers and taxpayers. Driscoll also indicated that the Board will continue to ensure that the cost it pays for wholesale water is fair and reasonable by working with Newport Water and intervening in water rate cases before the Public Utilities Commission, as necessary.

Editorial note: Written from a press release.

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02871, Localblogging, pwfd

Rhode Island plans to enhance digital literacy

The Rhode Island Adult Education Professional Development Center (PD Center) and Broadband Rhode Island (BBRI) today announced the launch of an agreement to develop and implement a plan for long-term sustainability of BBRI's Digital Literacy Project to improve adult Internet usage across the state, according to a RIDE press release.

As part of the federally funded initiative, BBRI created a digital literacy program for adults, including curriculum and instructor training and established a thriving network of over 200 volunteer and professional digital literacy trainers whose efforts target the state's disadvantaged populations. To date, these instructors delivered digital literacy training to almost 1,000 adults through libraries, public housing authorities, adult education organizations and senior centers.

“The question for us was how do we sustain and grow the BBRI Digital Literacy program beyond our current capacity,” said Stuart Freiman, Broadband Program Director, RI Office of Digital Excellence. Because the organizations' target populations overlap significantly, “With its focus on assisting educators who work with the state's adult learners, we established a productive working relationship with the PD Center. They are ideally suited to carry forward our important mission of expanding broadband awareness and adoption in order to improve Rhode Islanders' lives.”

The PD Center and BBRI have outlined plans for numerous activities throughout this year that are designed to strengthen the Digital Literacy Project and sustain its impact beyond the grant that was made available under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA). In the area of training, the PD Center and BBRI will work in partnership to develop a sustainable digital literacy trainer network, through adult education organizations and libraries that does not rely solely on volunteers.

The work plan for 2014 also includes development of a recognized standard for digital literacy outcomes, and establishment of criteria for evaluating adult learners' readiness to apply digital literacy skills to tasks such as participating in distance learning and completing essential life skills tasks online.

Jill Holloway, director of the PD Center at the West Bay Collaborative, will coordinate project planning and management under the initiative. Among the project's components, a technology expert will be brought on to upload and align BBRI's work and to train PD Center staff in managing and sustaining it. Said Holloway, “The BBRI staff have done an excellent job during their short tenure in laying the groundwork for this effort: from research and awareness campaigns, to the creation of excellent materials and resources, to the actual training of teachers and creating alliances with other programs and agencies in the state. The PD Center is more than pleased to enter this agreement and continue to address the deep digital divide that exists within our workforce and communities.”

BBRI's digital literacy training curriculum has become a key component in the effort to prepare Rhode Island learners to compete in a global digital economy. Earlier this year, the Rhode Island Department of Education (RIDE) announced that the BBRI curriculum would be implemented statewide to support all adult education programs in Rhode Island.

About Broadband Rhode Island
Broadband Rhode Island, an initiative of the Office of Digital Excellence, R.I. Department of Administration, is funded through December 2014 by the State Broadband Data and Development Grant Program (SBBD) as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA). The initiative focuses on broadband infrastructure mapping and broadband planning in the State of Rhode Island. Programs address public awareness and education about broadband and study and develop plans to increase adoption rate and broadband usage across all aspects of our lives including in our homes, schools, businesses, libraries, healthcare facilities, public safety and government. To learn more about Broadband Rhode Island please visit broadband.ri.gov.

About RI Adult Education Professional Development Center
The RI Professional Development Center (PD Center) delivers high-quality, research-based professional development and technical assistance to Rhode Island's adult education programs and practitioners. Through its leadership and partnerships, the PD Center seeks to support, enhance and promote the network of quality educational opportunities for RI's adult learners. To learn more about the PD Center, please visit riaepdc.org.

Editorial note: Written from a press release.

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02871, Localblogging, RIDE, edtech

Get to know the Aquidneck Island Planning Commission

Want to learn more about the Aquidneck Island Planning Commission (and maybe think about volunteering to be considered as a town representative?)

There will be a reception May 8th from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Marriott Courtyard, Gate 17 Access Road, Middletown to acquaint the public with the AIPC's regional planning work and to discuss new board members.

Each community's Town Council will soon be appointing four new volunteer directors to the AIPC. This informal event will be an opportunity to learn more about AIPC and the need for individuals with experience in law, finance, professional planning, nonprofit grant writing, architecture, and related fields.

For more information, contact AIPC at 845-9299 or email tina@aquidneckplanning.org. Or visit them on the Web at aquidneckplanning.org

Editorial note: Written from a press release.

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02871, Localblogging, AIPC

RI Historian Laureate's appointment should be terminated

Rhode Island has, among its honorific appointments, a "Historian Laureate," an unpaid position created by RIGL 42-100.1, and yesterday, Dr. Patrick T. Conley, the current appointee to this position, published a letter in the Providence Journal which openly attacked the RI Dept. of Environmental Management as arbitrary, arrogant, and intransigent, and blames RIDEM's "zero-growth bureaucracy" for the "strangulation" of the Rhode Island economy. It is an essay full of hyperbole and exclamation points, but lacks supporting evidence for its assertions.

The duties of Historian Laureate are described in RIGL in terms that speak to the importance of historical accuracy and academic professionalism, given the contexts in which this person is called upon to serve the state and its elected leaders:

§ 42-100.1-5  Duties. – The duties of the historian laureate shall include delivering historical lectures about pertinent aspects of Rhode Island history at important state historical ceremonies and observances at the request of the governor, the speaker of the house, the president of the senate, the chief justice of the supreme court, or the secretary of state; furnishing historical information or advice to the above-named officers upon request; reading and editing state-sponsored historical publications for accuracy upon request; and such other duties pertaining to the dissemination of information about Rhode Island history and heritage as the above-mentioned officers may from time-to-time require.

In my opinion, given the character of Dr. Conley's letter, the state of Rhode Island is not best served by continuing to recognize him in an official capacity, and I have requested that the Secretary of State reconsider his appointment.

From: John McDaid
Subject: Request to investigate and terminate the RI Historian Laureate's appointment
Date: April 27, 2014 at 8:41:33 AM EDT
To: aralphmollis@sos.ri.gov, sen-ottiano@rilin.state.ri.us, rep-edwards@rilin.state.ri.us
Cc: janet.coit@dem.ri.gov

Dear Secretary of State Mollis:
In yesterday’s Providence Journal, RI Historian Laureate Patrick Conley published a vicious attack on the RI Department of Environmental Management, including unsubstantiated charges and slurs on the character and professionalism of the members of this state agency. As a citizen and taxpayer, I find this incompatible with Mr. Conley’s honorific role, and I request that your office investigate this matter and terminate his appointment.

Should this not be feasible due to gaps in the enabling legislation (RIGL 42-100.1 provides no mechanism for removal) I am formally requesting my representatives, Rep. Jay Edwards and Sen. Chris Ottiano, to introduce on my behalf legislation to provide a mechanism for removal.

Best Regards.
-John G. McDaid
Portsmouth, RI

Here is Dr. Conley's piece in the Providence Journal -- its reproduction here falls squarely under Fair Use.

Patrick T. Conley: R.I.’s ruin in regulation and economic strangulation
April 26, 2014 01:00 AM
BY PATRICK T. CONLEY

With the once-wealthy Southern states diminished economically by the destruction of slavery, the federal census of 1890 revealed that Rhode Island had ridden the crest of the Industrial Revolution to become the American state with the highest per capita wealth. Jobs were so plentiful (despite low pay and long hours) that immigrants flocked to Rhode Island from Canada and nearly every European nation.

The mills that we are now trying to recycle as part of our historic industrial landscape sprouted like wildflowers in almost every town and city. Providence, then one of America’s largest cities, led the nation in the production of woolen and worsted products, ranked third in the manufacture of machinery and machine tools (behind Philadelphia and Cincinnati) and was regarded as the jewelry capital of the nation.

Providence was home to the world’s largest tool factory (Brown and Sharpe), file company (Nicholson File), engine factory (Corliss Steam Engine Company), screw factory (American Screw Company), and silverware manufacturer (Gorham). These firms were exuberantly proclaimed as Providence’s “Five Industrial Wonders of the World.”

In addition, the city contained the home offices of the textile empire of Robert and Benjamin Knight. These successors to the Spragues owned and ran America’s largest cotton textile enterprise. To that litany we can add Providence’s Joseph Banigan, Rhode Island’s first Irish-Catholic millionaire and a founder of the U.S. Rubber Company. Oh, how the mighty have fallen!

It would take a book to detail the myriad causes of Rhode Island’s decline over the last century an a quarter. My seldom-read books have, at least, summarized this industrial flight and plight, but where have we landed and why?

The answer to the “where” is easy. Rhode Island now has the nation’s highest rate of unemployment; we are near the bottom in the condition of our public infrastructure; our tax system discourages investors and drives out the wealthy; and we are burdened and stalled by the most difficult and cumbersome economic regulatory system in America. This over-regulation is also the “why.”

The Coastal Resources Management Council and, especially, the state Department of Environmental Management are the two greatest obstacles to Rhode Island’s economic growth. The arrogance and the intransigence of the DEM bureaucracy has made developers an endangered species. Intolerable delays are a hallmark of this agency. The state stagnates while DEM dozes. Whoever described a bureaucracy as “a giant machine run by mental midgets” must have had the Rhode Island regulatory system in mind — and on the local level it does not get much better!

Frustrated Rhode Islanders blame our economic woes, in part, on political corruption, but public malfeasance was as blatant here in 1890 (and 1790) as it is today. Yet we thrived. The state government that helped to propel us into the forefront of America’s Industrial Revolution was not politically virtuous.

In fact, nationally renowned reformer (or “muckraker”) Lincoln Steffens correctly described us as “A State for Sale” in an influential 1905 exposé. Charles Brayton, boss of the dominant Republican Party, frequently referred to his political associates as “fellow machinists” and observed that “an honest voter is one that stays bought.” William McLoughlin in his lucid survey of Rhode Island’s history accurately titled his chapter on this industrial era: “Prosperity, Respectability and Corruption.”

These observations are in no way intended to minimize the vital importance of clean government, but merely to show that it is not the panacea for Rhode Island’s economic revival.

Mindless regulation is the dead hand on the throat of the Rhode Island economy. Such regulation has become strangulation. Ironically, the success and the pervasiveness of our bygone industrial endeavors have created the allegedly contaminated conditions throughout Rhode Island that allow DEM to thrive. That arbitrary agency has mandated that we return a site to its pristine, pre-colonial condition before development can occur upon it. Our “lively experiment” is now conducted mainly in the test tubes of the DEM. If that zero-growth bureaucracy existed in the 19th century, it would be a wonder if our five industrial wonders (referenced above) could have acquired permits to operate.

DEM has become an acronym for “Don’t Employ Many!” Under the present system biologists, zoologists, chemists, agronomists, botanists, and toxicologists direct Rhode Island’s economic development and control its financial fate. Boss Brayton and his associates, for all their faults, would have been wise enough to confine these technicians to their laboratories where they could act in a mere advisory capacity. Instead, we have made them policy makers and development deal breakers. We have created powerful jobs for these few at the expense of the many and let the tail wag the dog!

Patrick T. Conley is a historian and a developer. In the latter capacity he has clashed at times with state environmental officials.

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02871, Localblogging, RIDEM

Aquidneck Land Trust plans Portsmouth herb walk

14apr23_ailt_forest.jpgThe Aquidneck Land Trust (ALT) will be hosting an "Herb Walk" through Portsmouth's Oakland Forest and Meadow Preserve on May 3, led by herbalist Jessyloo Rodrigues of Parcel Apothecary and ALT Stewardship Committee member Daryl Gardella, according to a release from the organization. Oakland Forest is located off Carriage Drive in Portsmouth. 

ALT said that participants can expect to discover "many edible and medicinal herbs that grow there. Herb walks are a new way to connect with forests and trails and to discover the hidden gems that grow in our own backyards!"

The walk is scheduled to kick off at 10am on Saturday, May 3 from Carriage Drive. ALT advises that carpooling is recommended, as parking is limited, and that participants should come prepared for a 1-2 hour tour. Sturdy shoes and appropriate outdoor clothing are strongly recommended. 

RSVP to Sophia Demaio by emailing her at sdemaio@ailt.org or contacting her at 401-849-2799 x14

Land Matters Walk and Talk Property Tours is an educational program which gives the public the opportunity to get out on the land ALT oi conserving, and connect with nature and ALT’s work.

ALT's time-sensitive mission is to conserve Aquidneck Island's open spaces and natural character for the lasting benefit of our community. The organization has conserved 2,450.66 acres on 71 properties across Aquidneck Island since its founding in 1990. ALT is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, and the first land trust in Rhode Island to have received national accreditation. For more information, visit AquidneckLandTrust.org

Editorial note: Written from a press release.

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02871, Localblogging, ALT

Gov. Chafee proclaims RI "Day of Reason"

21apr14_reason.jpgRI Gov. Lincoln Chafee has issued a Gubernatorial Proclamation officially designating May 1, 2014 as a "Day of Reason" in Rhode Island, according to a joint statement issued today by the Humanists of Rhode Island and The Secular Coalition for RI.

According to the joint statement, the action by Chafee "helps raise awareness throughout the State of Rhode Island of the importance of Reason as a guiding principle of our secular democracy."

The Humanists of Rhode Island and the Secular Coalition for Rhode Island will honor the National Day of Reason with local action and events. This observance is held in parallel with the National Day of Prayer, on the first Thursday in May each year. The goal of this effort is to celebrate reason — a concept all citizens can support — and to raise public awareness about the persistent threat to religious liberty posed by government intrusion into the private sphere of worship.

Humanism is a progressive philosophy of life that, without theism and other supernatural beliefs, affirms our ability and responsibility to lead ethical lives of personal fulfillment that aspire to the greater good of humanity. Humanists of Rhode Island are dedicated to good works and service projects that will best demonstrate our ideals.

The Secular Coalition for Rhode Island and the Secular Coalition for America share the common mission to increase the visibility of and respect for non-theistic viewpoints in the United States, and to protect and strengthen the secular character of our government as the best guarantee of freedom for all.

Links:
Humanists of RI
Secular Coalition for RI
Facebook page for Humanists of RI
Facebook page for Secular Coalition for RI
National Day of Reason

Editorial note and disclosure: Written from a press release. I am a member of the Humanists of Rhode Island.

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02871, Localblogging, HoRI, Reason

PWFD announces "Drinking Water Week"

14apr17_pwfd.jpgAt the April 15 board meeting of the Portsmouth Water and Fire District, Chairman Philip T. Driscoll read a proclamation declaring May 4, 2014 through May 10, 2014 to be Drinking Water Week, and asked all customers of the District to join in promoting and practicing water conservation in our daily lives.

During Drinking Water Week the Portsmouth Water and Fire District will be promoting water conservation. Driscoll said that every water user can have an impact by being 'water wise.' "We are not saying 'don't use the water', we are saying 'don't waste it'."

For the twenty-fourth consecutive year, the District will conduct a water conservation program for the town's third and seventh grade school children. The program aims to increase each student's awareness of the importance of water in their lives and to teach them how to conserve water. The emphasis of the program is on changing the water use habits of the children and their families through simple, commonsense techniques. This education program continues to be well received by the Portsmouth school system.

Editorial note: Written from a press release.

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02871, localbloggging, pwfd

DEM warns Portsmouth on landfill-area development

14apr11_dem.pngAs reported last month, the RI Dept. of Environmental Management was alerted to development taking place on land adjacent to the site of the former Portsmouth landfill, currently being capped by AP Enterprise. Yesterday, they formally notified the town of their concerns in a letter sent to Town Administrator John Klimm, provided to harddeadlines by Mark Dennen of DEM.

[W]e have been informed that properties on the corner of Highland, Pine and Russell Avenues that are currently undeveloped, are being developed. As stated previously, investigations have not been done on these properties so the extent and nature of fill are not known. However, investigations on the APE property have shown exceedences of both residential and industrial/commercial standards for metals, semi-volatile organic compounds and volatile organic compounds. We do not have any reason to believe landfill material on these properties is significantly different from landfill material on the APE property.

We realize that permitting of the construction of buildings and roads is clearly within the Town’s jurisdictions, any activities on the landfill itself, or impacting previously deposited waste, will require advanced approval from the DEM Office of Waste Management before construction activities take place.

Read the full DEM letter (pdf)

Tags: 
02871, Localblogging, Landfill capping

RI Endometriosis Foundation hosts inaugural fundraising walk

14apr08_endo.jpgOn Sunday May 4, 2014, The Endometriosis Foundation of Rhode Island will host Rhode Island’s first Endometriosis walk. The inaugural EndoWalkRI will raise funds and awareness about endometriosis, which affects more than 176 million women around the world.

The walk will take place rain or shine at Johnston Memorial Park at 11:00am. Registration is now open and there are different levels of participation. Walkers can visit Facebook.com/endofoundationofRI for all event details.

There will also be vendors in attendance to provide our EndoWalkers with information regarding infertility, therapy, and wellness.

The Endometriosis Foundation of RI (EFRI) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization founded by Jennifer Zanni, who was diagnosed with Endometriosis in her early 30’s. She started the local chapter of the national organization to provide resources and support for this common, but very misunderstood, condition.

Editorial note: Written from a press release.

Tags: 
02871, Localblogging

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