Senate President Paiva Weed’s and Rep. David A. Coughlin Jr.’s’ legislation that would make Rhode Island residents who are victims of a domestic terrorist attack outside of Rhode Island, but still within the United States, eligible to receive victim’s compensation payments from RI’s Crime Victim Compensation Fund was signed into law yesterday by Governor Gina M. Raimondo.

Newport resident Heather Abbott, whose case the legislation was based upon, was in attendance at the bill signing.

“Domestic terrorism is now an ever-present danger to our citizens and their livelihoods and this new law will offer a modicum of relief should the worst happen to one of our Rhode Island residents,” said Representative Coughlin (D-Dist. 60, Pawtucket).  “The purpose of terrorism is to destroy lives, physically and psychologically.  My hope is that this new law will afford unfortunate Rhode Island victims of these heinous acts the help they need to overcome the terror and piece back together their disrupted lives.”

“Rhode Islanders who are victims of terrorism outside of the United States are eligible for compensation through the fund,” Paiva Weed said. “This legislation ensures the language of the law is consistent with the intent. It makes it absolutely clear that Rhode Islanders who are victims of terrorism outside of the state but within the United States would be eligible for compensation.”

Representative Coughlin worked with RI General Treasurer Seth Magaziner, who administers the fund, on the legislation in response to the case of Newport native, and Boston Marathon Bombing victim, Heather Abbott, after Abbott was denied victim’s compensation payments by then General Treasurer Gina Raimondo after the terrorist attack.  It was determined that clarifying language was needed in order to include individuals who were victims of domestic terrorist attacks on United States soil.  Previously, only victims of terrorist attacks on foreign soil are deemed eligible to receive the victim compensation payments.

Ryan Belmore is the Owner and Publisher of What'sUpNewp. 
Belmore has been involved with What’sUpNewp since shortly after its launch in 2012, proudly leading it to be named Best Local News Blog in Rhode Island by Rhode Island Monthly readers in 2018, 2019, and 2020 and an honorable mention in the Common Good Awards in 2021.

Born and raised in Rhode Island, Belmore graduated from Coventry High School and the Community College of Rhode Island. In addition to living in Newport for 10 years, he has lived in Portsmouth, Coventry, Providence, Smithfield, Burrillville, and East Greenwich.

Belmore currently serves as Vice President of the Board Of Directors for Fort Adams Trust and on the Board of Directors for Potter League For Animals. He previously served on the Board of Lucy's Hearth and the Arts & Cultural Alliance for Newport County.

Belmore and his wife, Jen, currently live in Alexandria, Virginia, a move they made in 2021. Read more about that here - https://whatsupnewp.com/2021/09/letter-from-the-publisher-some-personal-news/

Belmore visits Newport every couple of weeks to support the 12+ paid contributors What'sUpNewp has on the ground across Rhode Island, a place he called home for 39 years.

Belmore is a member of Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers, Society of Professional Journalists, and the North American Snowsports Journalists Association.

In 2020, Belmore was named Member of the Year by LION and won the Arts & Cultural Alliance of Newport County's Dominque Award.
Belmore can be contacted at ryan@whatsupnewp.com and 401-662-1653.