At a press conference at the Newport Gateway Center earlier today, Governor Gina Raimondo, Lieutenant Governor Daniel McKee and Senator Louis DiPalma called for the passage of legislation that would give the state the tools necessary to demand greater accountability from National Grid.

Legislation pending before the House and Senate requires National Grid to file comprehensive emergency preparedness plans each year and brings Rhode Island law in line with the laws of neighboring states. The bill also enables the State to levy fines if a utility fails to comply with standards and establishes that such fines be paid by the utility’s shareholders and not passed on to ratepayers.

Raimondo, McKee and other officials gathered in Newport to express support for the legislation following the multi-day natural gas service interruption on Aquidneck Island in January that left thousands without heat. An investigation into that incident is being conducted by the Division of Public Utilities and Carriers. The Division will issue a report on its findings once the investigation is complete, a target date of September has been set.

The Utility Service Restoration Act is sponsored in the House by Representative Brian Patrick Kennedy and in the Senate by Senator Roger Picard.

Video of Press Press Conference

Ryan Belmore is the 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.