R.I. to fund State Police presence on B.I. this summer
Rhode Island Governor Dan McKee offered state funding to pay for the presence of two state police troopers on Block Island this summer, as well as a third trooper to serve as an interim chief of police.
The announcement was made in response to a question posed to McKee in a general press conference that took place Thursday, May 26. However, since there was no press release from his office, and still isn’t, it appears to have been an off-the-cuff remark made with no actual plan in place at the time.
The Town of New Shoreham had been asked to chip in for the cost of having state troopers on the island this summer. Although there have been state troopers on Block Island in the summer for years, at least on weekends, the town has not had to pay in the past, and most of the Town Council members balked at the idea that Block Island should have to pay when it is part of the state and has state roads. Additionally, the state has an almost billion-dollar surplus this year, and derives a lot of tax money from the island’s tourist economy.
Matthew Moynihan, Block Island’s current chief of police has taken the job of chief in South Kingstown, R.I. His last day of work will be on June 24.
During the news conference McKee said: “The state will cover the cost of the interim chief as well as the two officers.” That was news to the town.
Town Manager Maryanne Crawford told The Times that as of Wednesday afternoon, June 1, details had not been worked out but that she was in communication with the colonel of the state police about formulating a plan.