Warwick, RI -At the height of the toll debate, the Park Avenue Bridge in Cranston, near Speaker Mattiello's law office, was closed with little notice. WPRI reported: "'We had to close the bridge and quite frankly, I'm worried there are more to come,' Raimondo said. Some in the public may have become alarmed and pressure was put on lawmakers to pass Raimondo's toll plan. Yesterday, we learned from a WJAR10 news report indicating that RIDOT, which has not yet completed inspecting 200 deficient bridges, does not expect to close any other bridges in Rhode Island.
Rhode Island Republican Party Chairman Brandon S. Bell commented: "When the Park Ave Bridge was closed, Raimondo was warning that other bridges could close, but now that the General Assembly has closed down because of a tiff over chicken coops, DOT is saying, "without having finished its inspections, that there will likely be no other bridge closures." Chairman Bell wondered "was Raimondo unnecessarily being an alarmist to get her toll bill through the General Assembly?"
When Raimondo was running for Governor last year, she ran an ad called "The Only One" in which she boasted of being the only candidate with business experience, a plan for creating manufacturing jobs, and with the experience to solve big problems.
Chairman Bell noted: "After her first six months, Rhode Island's business climate has not shown much improvement, she has not presented a plan focused on growing manufacturing jobs, and her big plan to fix Rhode Island's bridges would just burden Rhode Island with more debt and new tolls. Maybe in 2018, if she runs for re-election she can run a television ad called "The Only Bridge" and take credit for closing the Park Avenue Bridge and replacing the old wood at the bridge. At least that ad would be honest with voters."