Press Releases

06.19.09

Whitehouse: Obama’s New Consumer Financial Protection Agency is a Step Forward for Rhode Islanders Caught in Credit Traps

Washington, D.C. - President Obama's new plan to toughen federal regulation of financial products like mortgages, credit cards, and retirement accounts will help level the playing field for Rhode Islanders like Ryan Kamphuis, who saw his interest rate skyrocket when he paid one bill late after having been hospitalized for weeks, U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) said today. The White House this week announced a comprehensive regulatory reform plan that includes the creation of a new federa… Continue Reading


06.18.09

Whitehouse, Lautenberg, Menendez Bill to Alert Communities of Sewage Overflows Passes Committee

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee today approved legislation Sens. Frank R. Lautenberg (D-NJ), Robert Menendez (D-NJ) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) authored to protect communities by requiring monitoring, notification and reporting of sewer overflows. "The public has a right to know about potentially harmful pollution in their water. Our bill would require sewer systems to be monitored regularly for sewage overflows and ensure that our neighborhoods are… Continue Reading


06.17.09

RI to Receive Over $12 Million to Upgrade Emergency Response Capabilities

WASHINGTON, DC -- In an effort to enhance Rhode Island's safety and emergency preparedness, Rhode Island's Congressional Delegation today announced the state will receive over $12 million in federal funding from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). This federal funding, which was passed in the fiscal year 2009 spending bill, will be administered by DHS's Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The federal grants will help state and local agencies and non-profits prepare for and respo… Continue Reading


06.12.09

Whitehouse Praises Obama’s Creation of Oceans Task Force

Providence, RI - U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) today hailed President Obama's creation of a new Interagency Ocean Policy Task Force as a step forward in efforts to protect and better manage our oceans and coasts. Whitehouse said: "The President's announcement today is another welcome sign that he takes seriously our responsibility to care for our oceans, coastlines, and Great Lakes. Balancing the different needs of marine ecosystem conservation, fishing and maritime industries; the thr… Continue Reading


06.12.09

Delegation Announces RI to Receive Over $250 Million in Federal Recovery Bond Assistance

WASHINGTON, DC - Rhode Island's Congressional delegation today announced that the U.S. Department of the Treasury is making over $151 million in Recovery Zone Facility Bonds and over $100.8 million in Recovery Zone Economic Development Bonds available to cities and towns throughout Rhode Island. The money will be provided through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, which U.S. Senators Jack Reed (D-RI) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and U.S. Representatives Patrick Kennedy … Continue Reading


06.11.09

Whitehouse Sponsors Legislation to Combat Childhood Lead Poisoning

Washington, D.C. - Legislation introduced today in the U.S. Senate would help homeowners in Rhode Island and around the country reduce the risk of childhood lead poisoning. The bipartisan Home Lead Safety Tax Credit Act of 2009, sponsored by U.S. Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Olympia Snowe (R-ME), would provide a federal tax credit of up to $3,000 to help cover the cost of reducing lead exposure in homes occupied by low-income families. The bill was first introduced in 2003 and in sub… Continue Reading


06.11.09

Rhode Island to Receive Nearly $450,000 to Keep Waters Clean

Washington, D.C. - Rhode Island's Congressional Delegation today announced $448,000 in federal funding for Rhode Island to help keep our waterways clean by preventing contamination from sewage. The funds will be used to install, replace, or renovate fifteen sewage pumpout stations around the state, and purchase a sewage pumpout boat to ensure Rhode Island boaters have easy access to proper waste management facilities. "This federal funding will help conserve Rhode Island's coastal waters so th… Continue Reading


06.10.09

Rhode Islander Testifies at Senate Hearing on Dangers of Relationship Violence

Washington, D.C. - Saunderstown resident Ann Burke, whose daughter Lindsay was murdered by an ex-boyfriend in 2005, has made "amazing contributions" to efforts to prevent dating violence in Rhode Island, U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) said today at a Senate hearing where Burke testified in support of federal legislation to create grant programs for relationship violence education. Whitehouse, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, spoke during the hearing to recognize Burke for he… Continue Reading


06.09.09

Experts Find Progress, but Room for Improvement, in Putting Science Before Politics at EPA

Washington, D.C. - President Obama's Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has made progress towards ensuring that environmental policy is based in science, not politics - but there's still room for improvement, experts testified before a Senate oversight hearing today. "In truth there is no silver bullet that will forever protect EPA science from political manipulation," said Dr. Francesca Grifo, Director of the Scientific Integrity Program at the Union of Concerned Scientists. "Any law or po… Continue Reading


06.08.09

Whitehouse Hears From Rhode Islanders About Unfair Credit Practices

Providence, R.I. - On the heels of sweeping credit card reform legislation recently passed by Congress and signed into law by President Obama, U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) met today with Rhode Islanders affected by unfair credit card practices at the John Hope Settlement House in Providence. Whitehouse heard from consumers and small business owners about the impact of high interest rates and other tricks and traps on their families and businesses. "With the economy in recession and u… Continue Reading


06.04.09

Whitehouse Meets with Supreme Court Nominee Sonia Sotomayor

Washington, D.C. - Judge Sonia Sotomayor should be confirmed to the U.S. Supreme Court as soon as possible, U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) said after meeting with her to discuss her historic nomination. As a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Whitehouse will be among a small group of senators who will question Judge Sotomayor during her confirmation hearings. He met with Sotomayor in his office in Washington, D.C. for about half an hour on Wednesday, June 3. "Against difficult … Continue Reading


06.04.09

RI to Receive $2.3 Million in Federal Funding for Flood Protection

WASHINGTON, DC - In an effort to create jobs, restore habitat, and mitigate flooding along the Pawtuxet, Pocasset, and Meshanticut Rivers, Rhode Island's Congressional Delegation today announced that the state will receive over $2.3 million through the federal Recovery Act for flood protection projects in Cranston and West Warwick. The United States Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) in Rhode Island will receive over $1.95 million to purchase easem… Continue Reading


06.03.09

Cantwell, Collins, Whitehouse Announce Legislation to Address Underserved Populations and Shortage of Primary Care Workers

WASHINGTON, DC - Thursday, U.S. Senators Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Susan Collins (R-ME), and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) announced the introduction of the Preserving Patient Access to Primary Care Act to address two fundamental problems in health care: a critical shortage of primary care physicians and inefficient Medicare reimbursements that do not reward a coordinated approach of patients' health care needs. The legislation aims to provide efficient, cost effective, prevention oriented care throug… Continue Reading


06.03.09

Whitehouse Joins Cranston Family in Fight to Cure Genetic Disease

Washington, D.C. - In an effort to combat the leading genetic cause of death in children under the age of two, U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) has cosponsored legislation to accelerate research into spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), a disease that affects the Calise family of Cranston and thousands of others across the country. The Spinal Muscular Atrophy Treatment Acceleration Act (S. 1158) would rapidly advance treatments for SMA, a hereditary disorder that destroys nerves controlling v… Continue Reading


05.26.09

Whitehouse Travels to Middle East to Meet with Troops, Foreign Leaders

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) traveled overseas this Memorial Day weekend as part of an official congressional delegation visit to meet with American troops and foreign leaders in the Middle East. He was in Afghanistan today, and visited Iraq and Pakistan in recent days. "I was glad to have the chance to thank our troops serving abroad on this Memorial Day weekend," said Whitehouse. "As we work toward securing Afghanistan and Pakistan and welcoming our service memb… Continue Reading


05.26.09

Whitehouse Statement on Nomination of Judge Sotomayor to the Supreme Court

Afghanistan - During a congressional delegation visit to Afghanistan today, U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) applauded President Obama's nomination to the Supreme Court of Judge Sonia Sotomayor of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. "By all accounts, Judge Sotomayor is a superb jurist who would bring distinction to the Court," said Whitehouse, a former U.S. Attorney and Attorney General for Rhode Island who now serves on the Senate Judiciary Committee. "Her nominat… Continue Reading


05.22.09

Rhode Island Appropriations Requests

Financial Services and General Government City of Providence Department of Planning and Development Providence, Rhode Island Rhode Island Center for Life Sciences, Research, Development and Commercialization Request: $750,000 The City of Providence requests funding for a planning, site selection, and project economics study to support the creation of the Rhode Island Center for Life Sciences, Research, Development and Commercialization in the City's Jewelry District. The propose… Continue Reading


05.22.09

RI Receives $450K to Protect Children from Online Predators

WASHINGTON, DC - Rhode Island's Congressional Delegation announced today that Rhode Island has received $452,439 through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Recovery Act) for Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) program initiatives, administered by the Department's Office of Justice Programs (OJP). The Rhode Island State Police will receive the funds as the lead task force agency. "This funding will ensure Rhode Island's law enforcement officers have the resources they need … Continue Reading


05.22.09

Whitehouse: EPA Reforms to Toxins Assessment Process Will Improve Transparency

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) applauded the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)'s announcement yesterday that it would revamp the process by which it determines the toxicity of chemicals. EPA's Integrated Risk Information System (IRIS) assesses the impact on human health of exposure to chemical substances, to help keep people informed about risks to public health in the air, water, and soil. "We depend on EPA to give the American people the information they need t… Continue Reading


05.20.09

International Anti-Piracy Caucus Unveils “2009 International Piracy Watch List”

Washington, D.C.: At a press conference today the Congressional International Anti-Piracy Caucus, which is chaired by Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Orrin Hatch (R-UT), and Congressmen Adam Schiff (D-CA) and Bob Goodlatte (R-VA), unveiled the "2009 International Piracy Watch List". In an effort to combat international copyright piracy by calling attention to countries where piracy has reached alarming levels the Caucus announced they will closely monitor the serious problems of copyrigh… Continue Reading

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