In a little over two weeks, Rhode Islanders will be asked to vote on seven referenda, $400 million in spending to improve higher education, transportation, affordable housing and several other areas. Can we afford it? Can we afford not to approve all seven? Helping us understand the referenda and whether we can afford them will be General Treasurer Seth Magaziner on a WhatsUpNewp videocast, Thursday at 3 p.m.

Magaziner will also talk about the state’s Unclaimed Properties Program and how a new program he’s initiated can help small businesses find thousands of previously lost dollars.

Representative Lauren Carson (D. District 75, Newport) will also join us during this conversation.

The referenda that will be on the March 2 ballot are:

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  • Industrial Facilities Infrastructure – A $60 million .
  • Higher Education Facilities – $107.3 million.
  • Beach, Clean Water and Green Bond – $74 million.
  • Housing and Community Opportunity – $65 million.
  • Transportation Infrastructure State Match – $71.7 million.
  • Early Childhood Care and Education Capital Fund – $15 million.
  • Cultural Arts and the Economy Grant Program and State Preservation Grants Program – $7 million.
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Frank Prosnitz brings to WhatsUpNewp several years in journalism, including 10 as editor of the Providence (RI) Business News and 14 years as a reporter and bureau manager at the Providence (RI) Journal. Prosnitz began his journalism career as a sportswriter at the Asbury Park (NJ) Press, moving to The News Tribune (Woodbridge, NJ), before joining the Providence Journal. Prosnitz hosts the Morning Show on WLBQ radio (Westerly), 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. Monday through Friday, and It’s Your Business, also on WBLQ, Monday and Tuesday, 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. Prosnitz has twice won Best in Business Awards from the national Society of American Business Editors and Writers (SABEW), twice was named Media Advocate of the Year by the Small Business Administration, won an investigative reporter’s award from the New England Press Association, and newswriting award from the Rhode Island Press Association.