From Recess To Snack Sales, EGSD Seeks Input On New Health Policy 

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The School Committee has revamped its health and wellness policy but is looking for input from the community before it’s enacted. Many of the policy’s initiatives aren’t new but are more clearly defined and organized, School Committeewoman Carolyn Mark said at a recent meeting. In addition, the policy was brought into line with state and federal guidelines.

For instance, foods that can be sold at school need to be USDA-defined “smart snacks,” including nuts, seeks, fruits, vegetables and low-fat yogurt. Healthier beverages, under state law, include water, fruit juice with no added sugar, and vegetable-based drinks. 

The policy also says the district’s food service company “will maximize the procurement and serving of fresh, seasonal, locally grown produce.” At the School Committee meeting June 17, Chairman David Green questioned that addition. In particular, Green said he worried that could be expensive and suggested the inclusion of the words, “whenever practical.”

The guidelines are less strict for after-school events, although the policy “strongly encourages” that healthy options are offered.

As has been the case for the past few years, homemade baked goods are not allowed to be sold at schools. The reason is two-fold: “to support a healthy school environment” and “to avoid potential food-borne illness and to reduce allergic reactions.” 

For events where snacks are sold after school, the policy says “healthy compliant alternatives will be made available for every food category” on offer. At the high school snack bars run by the Booster Club, the athletic director is to “review and monitor” food and drinks for sale. 

That aspect of the policy prompted the most discussion at the June 17 meeting, with Green calling that potentially “Bloomberg-esque,” referring to New York City’s former Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who tried to enact a ban on “big gulp” size drinks and other food-related measures.

“Our goal here was not to completely strip the Booster Club’s ability to fundraise,” Mark said. “It’s not saying what they can’t sell, but that healthy alternatives will be provided.”

But Green noted that the snack bar is only open after school and that Carcieri Field is on town – not school – property, suggesting this was “overreach” on the part of the new policy.

In the portion of the policy devoted to recess and movement, a clause has been added to discourage both using certain physical activities as punishment, and withholding recess as a form of punishment:

“Teachers and other school and community personnel will not use physical activity (e.g. running, laps, push-ups) or withhold opportunities for physical activity (e.g. recess, physical education) as punishment, unless there is a compelling safety concern.”

“I think the research shows it’s the kid who’s acting out who needs recess the most,” said Mark.

Additionally, the new policy states, when recess is held indoors it “shall include opportunities for physical movement and play.”

The School Committee will have a second reading of the policy (which you can find here) at its meeting Tuesday, July 15. The committee would like input – you can reach Carolyn Mark with any questions or comments at carolynmark@mac.com.

Cemetery Cleanups Exceed Expectations


Robin Wittwer, Sharon Lawler, Ramon Alferos, Carrie Votta, and Ben Votta By Jason Beaumier

The East Greenwich Historic Cemetery Advisory Commission is pleased to announce another successful round of cleanups. In fact, our cleanups on June 21 were the most successful to date, as we were originally only planning to address three cemeteries but thanks to the outstanding efforts of our volunteers we were able to clean and rehabilitate five area cemeteries: Cemetery 30 on Meadowbrook Road; Cemeteries 21, 31, and 33, on South County Trail; and Cemetery 28 on Franklin Road. Since the formation of the commission we now have cleaned eight area cemeteries, including the adoption of a handful more by the community.
The commission would like to thank the volunteers for their efforts: Robin Wittwer, Sharon Lawler, Ramon Alferos, Alan Clarke, Michelle Place, Carrie Votta, and Ben Votta. We could not have done this without your help, and we are extremely thankful for your efforts and dedication.
VolunteerMichelle Place hard at work
Volunteer Michelle Place cleans off a gravestone.

Despite the successful efforts of the group, we still have a lot of work ahead of. The next cleanup date(s) are yet to be decided, but in the meantime if you or someone you know would like to take part in a future cleanup, need community service hours, or want to “adopt” a cemetery, contact Vice Chair and Volunteer Coordinator ML  Formisano at mlformisano@cox.net for details or if you would just like general info about us and our efforts you may contact Lea Anthony in the town Planning Department at (401) 886-8643.

Pictured in photo L-R Alan Clarke, Robin Wittwer, Carrie Votta, Michelle Place, Ben Votta, Ramon Alferos, Chairman Deron Murphy

Pictured in photo, from left: Alan Clarke, Robin Wittwer, Carrie Votta, Michelle Place, Ben Votta, Ramon Alferos, Chairman Deron Murphy, and Sharon Lawler.
The East Greenwich Historic Cemetery Advisory Commission was formed in December 2013 and is tasked with restoring and rehabilitating the 91 area historic cemeteries, among other duties, including raising public awareness. Consisting of five members appointed by the Town Council, we are happy to serve the town and look forward to future cleanups and to continue the process of getting these cemeteries back into the condition they belong in.

Today In EG: Farmers Market; Beach Open

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Recycling is ON; yard waste pickup is OFF (yard waste is being picked up every other week through September). For the full 2014 pickup schedule, click here.

Monday, June 30

EG Farmers Market: The market is here every Monday afternoon into October. Support local! From 3 to 6 p.m. at Academy Field. Read more about it here.

Goddard Beach reopened: The state Department of Health officials reopened Goddard Memorial State Park in Warwick for swimming on S. This recommendation is based on results from water samples that show bacteria levels within acceptable limits.

Middle Road Bridge is closed: Still, and for weeks to come. Here’s the scoop.

EG Police Reports: Gas Station Cocaine, Cop Car Crash

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These reports come from the East Greenwich Police Department and are public information. An arrest does not mean the individual has been convicted of a crime.

Monday, June 16

10:30 p.m. – Police towed a car parked in a no-parking zone on Carrs Pond Road at Middle Road.

Wednesday, June 18

9:57 a.m. – Police went to a house at 1370 Middle Road because of a burglar alarm going off. They found a broken rear porch window and a rear door had been forced open. No one was home. The owner was contacted. It was unclear if someone got inside or when the window was broken – if perhaps the alarm scared off any potential intruder. Nothing was missing from the house.

6:47 p.m. – At the East Greenwich Housing Authority’s request, the police issued no-trespass orders to four people who were visiting and staying with a resident of the EGHA property on Long Street. Complaints against the individuals included excessive noise to possibly taking advantage of the resident, who is 73.

6:58 p.m. – Police arrested a Central Falls man, 31, on a 6th District Court bench warrant after he was stopped for running a red light on Main Street. Routine checks turned up the warrant. He was processed at the station and taken to the Adult Correctional Institutions.

Thursday, June 19

An East Greenwich woman told police she saw her neighbor come into her yard and pull a wire off a spark plug on her generator June 7. The generator had to be replaced and she has since installed a security camera on her property. She asked that the incident be documented but did not want to talk to the neighbor about the incident because of ongoing neighbor problems.

Friday, June 20

3:41 p.m. – An employee of Cumberland Farms, 5687 Post Road, told police a customer found a bag of what later tested positive for cocaine in the parking lot by pump 1. It was unclear how long the bag had been sitting there. Police seized it and found, in addition to the cocaine, several chopped up pills with “TV” on one side and “58” on the other. Initial research showed the pills could be Tramadol, a pain killer.

Saturday, June 21

12:07 a.m. – An East Greenwich man told police his sister and brother were stealing things from their mother’s house. His sister is living in the house and the mother’s legal guardian so police said it was a civil matter. But police did go to the house, where they met with the EG man’s brother as he was removing some furniture and appliances from the house. He acknowledged they had been having “family problems” ever since their mother went into a retirement home. The son left the house without incident.

11 a.m. – A Forest Lane resident told police someone egged his garage door and driveway sometime overnight and that it was the second time this had happened. The first time they did not report it. The resident said he would like to press charges if the perpetrator was caught.

3:38 p.m. – An employee of Cumberland Farms, 3323 South County Trail, told police a woman came into the store making threats against her. The employee said this wasn’t the first time she’s had problems with this woman. Police visited the woman, who lives in EG, but she denied making threats and said she hadn’t been loud or disruptive while at the store. Because of the conflicting stories, police arranged to meet with the store manager to learn her reasons for wanting a no-trespass order issued.

8:35 p.m. – An EG woman told police she believed her ex-boyfriend, with whom there’s a no-contact order, has been trying to reach her from prison via an inmate collect-call service. The woman played a voicemail from the automated system, but the message did not identify who was calling. She said she feared for her safety from the man.

9:25 p.m. – Police arrested an East Greenwich man, 37, for simple assault, disorderly conduct and resisting arrest, following an incident at his girlfriend’s apartment. A woman told police she wanted them to check on her step-grandchildren because they had been left outside of their apartment while their mother was asleep inside and the door was locked. The children, 12 and 14, told police they had been outside to avoid their mother and her boyfriend, who was also inside. Police talked to the mother, who appeared to be very drunk and had difficultly focusing. The boyfriend was very agitated and said he’d just been released from the ACI. When police asked what he’d been in for, the man started swearing at the officers and flipping them off. The grandmother was allowed to take the children for the night and police questioned the mother, who couldn’t explain why the children were outside and the door was locked. She became upset and called to her boyfriend (who had been persuaded to go upstairs) to come help her. A struggle ensued, in which the boyfriend tried to hit one of the officers and kept struggling even after the officers told him repeatedly to stop fighting and resisting. One of the officers then hit the man with four “open plan strikes” to his back and the other officer kneed the man three times in his right side. The man was forced prone and finally stopped resisting once one handcuffed was on his wrist. Police took him into custody and he apologized at the station, saying it was the alcohol that made him act like that. After he was processed, the man requested medical attention so he was taken to Kent Hospital by rescue. Police contacted DCYF about the incident.

Sunday, June 22

12:20 a.m. – Police arrested a Warwick man, 32, for driving while intoxicated after he ran into a police car on Water Street. When police asked the driver to get out of the car, the driver was very unsteady on his feel and smelled strongly of alcohol. He admitted to drinking but didn’t know how much he’d had and said he was on his way home from Blu. He agreed to take field sobriety tests, which he failed. During a search of the man, police found a bachelor party invitation for Saturday night at 6 p.m. When police asked if he’d been at a bachelor party, the man said, “Oh, yeah, good time.” At the station, the man refused to take a blood alcohol breath test, so he was issued a traffic tribunal summons along with the district court DUI summons. He was released to a friend.

7:14 p.m. – Police arrested a West Kingston man, 35, on three bench warrants and for driving with an expired license after he was stopped on his motorcycle on Main Street for speeding and other infractions. One of the warrants was from Superior Court and mandated he be held without bail, so he was taken to the ACI after processing at EGPD.

Troop 1 Court Of Honor

Troop 1 Court Of Honor

East Greenwich Boy Scout Troop 1 held its Eagle Scout Court of Honor Sunday June 29 at Cole Middle School in East Greenwich. Among the speakers were U.S. Senator Jack Reed, U.S. Representative Jim Langevin, Rhode Island Attorney General Peter Kilmartin, and state Senator Dawson Hodgson. The boys all completed community service projects to earn their Eagle Scout rank.

In the photo, left to right, are: Congressman Jim Langevin; Eagle Scouts Thomas Basso; Patrick Curtis; Ben Fazio; Ryan Marshall; David Navilliat; Dominic Rizzo, and Garrett Scanlon; along with U.S. Senator Jack Reed.

Cemetery Cleanups Exceed Expectation

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From left, Robin Wittwer, Sharon Lawler, Ramon Alferos, Carrie Votta, and Ben Votta at the historic cemetery next to Chef-a-Roni on South County Trail.

By Jason Beaumier

The East Greenwich Historic Cemetery Advisory Commission is pleased to announce another successful round of cleanups. In fact, our cleanups on June 21 were the most successful to date, as we were originally only planning to address three cemeteries but thanks to the outstanding efforts of our volunteers we were able to clean and rehabilitate five area cemeteries: Cemetery 30 on Meadowbrook Road; Cemeteries 21, 31, and 33, on South County Trail; and Cemetery 28 on Franklin Road. Since the formation of the commission we now have cleaned eight area cemeteries, including the adoption of a handful more by the community.
The commission would like to thank the volunteers for their efforts: Robin Wittwer, Sharon Lawler, Ramon Alferos, Alan Clarke, Michelle Place, Carrie Votta, and Ben Votta. We could not have done this without your help, and we are extremely thankful for your efforts and dedication.
VolunteerMichelle Place hard at work
Volunteer Michelle Place cleans off a gravestone. 

Despite the successful efforts of the group, we still have a lot of work ahead of. The next cleanup date(s) are yet to be decided, but in the meantime if you or someone you know would like to take part in a future cleanup, need community service hours, or want to “adopt” a cemetery, contact Vice Chair and Volunteer Coordinator ML  Formisano at mlformisano@cox.net for details or if you would just like general info about us and our efforts you may contact Lea Anthony in the town Planning Department at (401) 886-8643.

Pictured in photo L-R Alan Clarke, Robin Wittwer, Carrie Votta, Michelle Place, Ben Votta, Ramon Alferos, Chairman Deron Murphy
Pictured in photo, from left: Alan Clarke, Robin Wittwer, Carrie Votta, Michelle Place, Ben Votta, Ramon Alferos, Chairman Deron Murphy, and Sharon Lawler.
The East Greenwich Historic Cemetery Advisory Commission was formed in December 2013 and is tasked with restoring and rehabilitating the 91 area historic cemeteries, among other duties, including raising public awareness. Consisting of five members appointed by the Town Council, we are happy to serve the town and look forward to future cleanups and to continue the process of getting these cemeteries back into the condition they belong in.

Showcased Home: Secret Garden Patio Among 70 Hyland Avenue’s Charms

Showcased Home: Secret Garden Patio Among 70 Hyland Avenue’s Charms

By Patti DePriest

Talk about curb appeal! This 4 bedroom, 2-1/2 bathroom center hall colonial on the Hill has it. The inside’s loaded with charm and original period details from the home’s 1924 origins, such as chair rails, braided moldings and pristine hardwoods. The home also features a front-to-back living room, sunroom with French doors, breakfast nook, and a renovated master bath with a skylight and oversized spa tub. The property’s compact, but lushly landscaped yard may be enjoyed from both the brick secret garden patio and new deck.

70 Hyland Avenue, East Greenwich, is holding an open house on Sunday, June 29, from 2:30 to 5 p.m.

The price is $388,000. Karen Hersum of Weichert, Realtors-Cress & Company has the listing. For more information, call 401-447-2121.


If you would like a home to be showcased on East Greenwich News, please e-mail a high resolution (400×600) exterior photo and details about what makes it unique to patti.depriest@nemoves.com. Ideally, houses chosen for East Greenwich News’ Showcased Home are newer listings with open houses that weekend. The final decision is solely that of the editor.

Patti DePriest is a Realtor® with Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage in East Greenwich. For questions or comments, please call 401-243-5041.

Attorney General, National Grid Warn Against Payment Scam

Attorney General Peter Kilmartin and National Grid warned residents that a scam has resurfaced in which business owners are told they need to settle their National Grid bill over the phone or risk immediate electricity shutoff.

Restaurants in East Greenwich, including Richard’s Pub and Raku Sakura, reported experiencing this scam in May. This latest warning stems from notification from a local restaurateur that was almost scammed out of nearly $1,000.

From the AG’s press release:
In the most recent version of the scam, an individual claiming to be a service technician from National Grid contacted a local business owner, saying he was en route to his place of business to shut off the power supply.  When disputing the delinquency, the service technician provided the business owner with a customer service phone number to call to clear up the issue.
 
When the business owner contacted the illegitimate customer service representative, they were told that even though the customer had sent in a payment, due to a problem with the National Grid system the payment was returned – and the only way to override the system and prevent shutoff was with an immediate payment via a “Green Dot” pre-paid debit card.  The so-called customer service rep even provided the business owner with names and addresses of several retail locations in the area that sell “Green Dot” cards.   The customer service rep indicated the payment and the fee for the Green Dot” card would either be refunded once the system is up and running properly or could be applied to a future bill. 
 
Attorney General Kilmartin and National Grid remind business owners and all residents that National Grid may contact customers with past due balances by phone to offer payment options, BUT NEVER demands direct payment over the telephone
 
Customers who have received calls demanding immediate payment and are asked to wire money using a “Green Dot” card or for bank account information should contact National Grid immediately at National Grid’s Customer Contact Center at 1-800-322-3223

After 50 Years Together, Finally A Wedding

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David Prok, left, and Jerry Knasel were at the East Greenwich Town Clerk’s office Wednesday to get their marriage license. They’ve been together since 1964. Credit: EG News

It was an hour before the end of candidate filing period, Wednesday afternoon around 3, and I was sitting on a bench outside the Town Clerk’s office to catch any last-minute filers when two men walked in, carrying some paperwork. 

“Hi, you here to file?” I said.

“For a marriage license,” said one of the men, looking around as if unclear where to go. 

“In there,” I said, pointing to the Town Clerk’s office, and in they went. 

Two men. Marriage license. 

I was there to for an election story, but same-sex marriage has been legal less than a year in Rhode Island. I followed them into the office. 

The men, David Prok and Jerry Knasel (silent K), told me they live in Westlake, Ohio, and they’ve been together for 50 years. But since same-sex marriage isn’t legal in Ohio, a friend who lives in East Greenwich suggested they could get married here during their visit. 

“Come on over. We’ll get you hitched in our place,” Prok recounted their friend saying. In Rhode Island, out-of-state couples may apply for a marriage license in the town in which the ceremony will take place. 

The wedding was to take place on Friday at a house in East Greenwich, officiated by another friend, a Unitarian Universalist minister in Rhode Island for the UU General Assembly in Providence this weekend. 

According to Elaine Vespia in the Town Clerk’s office, this wasn’t the first same-sex couple to get a marriage license in East Greenwich, but there have only been a handful since marriage between same-sex couples became legal Aug. 1, 2013.

When the paperwork was completed, a smiling Vespia congratulated Prok, a professor of sociology, and Knasel, a retired teacher, then she turned to help someone who was there to file candidacy papers. The couple left with their marriage license in hand.

 

 

 

 

Today In EG: Goddard Beach Closed, Lunchtime Concert At Town Hall

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Recycling is OFF; yard waste pickup is ON (yard waste is being picked up every other week through September). For the full 2014 pickup schedule, click here.

Friday, June 27

Goddard Park Farmers Market: The farmers market at Goddard Park is open for the season (through Halloween). Here’s more information about the market and vendors. Fridays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Brown Bag Outdoor Concert: Branded will perform a free outdoor lunchtime concert in front of Town Hall (postponed after it was rained out in May). Tables and chairs will be set up on the lawn so grab a sandwich from a local restaurant or deli and bring along a bag lunch. Noon to 1:30 p.m. Future dates July 11 (Johnny Edwards Power of Soul), Sept. 12 (In Tandem), and Oct. 10 (Caraher Brothers). There is NO concert in August. The concerts are sponsored by the EG Parks & Recreation Department. If rain is in the forecast, you can check if the concert is on by calling 886-8626, ext. 1.

Goddard Beach closed: The Department of Health has closed Goddard Park beach to swimming because of high bacteria counts.Conimicut Point Beach and Oakland Beach in Warwick are also closed. Beach status may change on a daily basis. For up to date information about swimming at Rhode Island beaches, call (401) 222-2751.

Teen Center: The gymnasium at Eldredge Elementary is open most every Friday from 6 to 8 p.m. for teenagers looking to shoot some hoops or some bull. All are welcome. To learn more, check out the F.A.C.E.S. website here.

Happy wedding day to Elizabeth McCarthy and Tony Smith! 

Saturday, June 28

EGAPL Yard Sale – items wanted! The East Greenwich Animal Protection League is holding it’s first annual yard sale. It takes place Sat. and Sun., from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the East Greenwich Animal Hospital – where EGAPL boards its animals. Space is available for outside vendors at $40 per table (you must provide your own table). EGAPL is also requesting donations of sale items, which can be dropped off at the animal hospital starting at 8 a.m. Saturday. For more information, contact Tammy Flanagan at onlygirlx33@aol.com or 401-241-4541.

Paddle for EGAPL: Rhode Island Paddle Sports and the East Greenwich Animal Protection League in Paddle for a Cause! Rhode Island Paddle Sports will donate 50% of all sales to EGAPL on Saturday, June 28, 2014, from noon to sunset. There will also be raffle prizes including jewelry, gift cards, and more, and all raffle proceeds benefit EGAPL. Enjoy the beautiful weather on the 28th while supporting animals! Rhode Island Paddle Sports is located at 3 Division Street, East Greenwich, RI 02818.

Waterfire full lighting: All Full WaterFire installations light up over 80 braziers from Waterplace Park to Memorial/South Main Street Park. Lighting occurs shortly after sunset (8:25 p.m. Saturday) until midnight. For more information, click here.

Sunday, June 29

EG Animal Protection League open house: Every Sunday, the EGAPL opens its doors so people can meet the dogs and cats in need of permanent homes. You can find videos of some of the animals available for adoption here. At a NEW LOCATION: EG Animal Hospital, 4302 Post Road. 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Kids Chess Club: Symposium Books hosts a Chess Club for children ages 7 to 14 every Sunday, taught by chess master Joe Martin. The first session is free. 1000 Division Street (near Panera). 1 p.m.

Newport Rocks the Fort: Seven bands, six hours at Fort Adams in Newport, including EG favorite Hey Nineteen. Buy tickets at www.fortadams.org. From 2 to 8 p.m.

Newport Art Festival: At Bowen’s Wharf Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

And …

Middle Road Bridge is CLOSED … for two months! Here’s more information about the closure.

Have a birthday, wedding day, anniversary you want noted? EG News would love to help. Just send an email to egreenwichnews@gmail.com.


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