A Hummel Report Investigation
This week, Jim Hummel is back with our quarterly update: new information on a handful of Hummel Report investigations. From the Portsmouth school superintendent driving on out-of-state license plates for more than a year and the beleaguered Central Coventry Fire District - to the resignation of a local fire marshal and a great ending for a high school wrestler caught in bureaucratic red tape.
This week: major developments on a handful of our investigations - beginning with the Portsmouth school superintendent, who had refused to register car in Rhode Island - until we called her on it right before Christmas.
Hummel: ``You know the law in Rhode Island says 30 days?''
Krizic: ``You know someone did inform me of that, that I have 30 days once you move here. So yes, it's obviously something I have to take care of once the new year happens.''
In fact Portsmouth's School Superintendent, Lynn Krizic, had been told by her own School Committee more than a year ago she needed to switch out the Illinois vanity plates on her 2003 Saab and get registered in Rhode Island.
After we asked her about it in December, Krizic told us in a followup email several days later that because the car was jointly registered with her husband, who still lives in Illinois, she didn't plan to register in Rhode Island - something Krizic never mentioned in our interview.
That didn't fly with the police in Little Compton, where she lives. An officer stopped her on the way to work one day, issuing her a citation - and in February, after several trips to the Division of Motor Vehicles in Cranston, Krizic finally registered and got Rhode Island license plates - keeping a University of Illinois plate holder on her 2003 Saab.
But the superintendent was still required to appear last week before a magistrate in traffic court, where she produced the registration. The judge dismissed the charges but she had to pay $35 in court costs.
All of this - 20 months after Krizic took the job in Rhode Island.
Will the Central Coventry Fire District survive its financial problems - or dissolve and be merged into surrounding fire districts? It's a question that has been the subject of a hot debate going back to last fall when the district went into receivership.
Taxpayer: ``And you think the most efficient way is, on yeah, let's tax the people!''
Receiver: ``Sir, I'm going to ask you to calm down.''
Taxpayer: No, I won't...''
Tempers flared at another special meeting in February, where fire district voters ultimately rejected a budget that would have significantly increased their taxes.