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In GOP opponent’s city, governor says schools must be fixed

September 19, 2018

CRANSTON, R.I. (AP) — Democratic Gov. Gina Raimondo visited her Republican opponent’s city on Wednesday to stress the need to fix schools statewide.

Raimondo held a press conference across the street from a school that’s next to Cranston Mayor Allan Fung’s office. Raimondo faces Fung in November.

A frozen pipe burst in the boys’ bathroom at the school in January. The flooding damage forced Cranston High School East to close for three days.

Raimondo said the pipe froze because a broken window blew open and urinals came off the walls.

“Many of the schools in Rhode Island are crumbling and it’s time to take action,” she said.

Raimondo faulted Fung for not doing more to fix school buildings. She said that unlike other municipalities with crumbling schools, Cranston has not come forward to request money for new projects since the moratorium on school construction was lifted earlier in her term. She said she’d like to ask Fung why.

Raimondo also urged voters to approve a bond in November for school construction statewide.

Fung is proud of the progress and success in Cranston schools and he’d work to deliver better results from the state’s investments in education, Fung’s spokesman, Andrew Augustus, said in response to the press conference.

Fung questions whether all municipalities would benefit from the bond. Raimondo says they would.

The bond would finance the first phase of Raimondo’s $1 billion school construction plan. She said at a minimum, teachers and school children deserve facilities that are warm, safe and dry.

Joe Trillo, who chaired President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign in Rhode Island, is also running for governor as an independent.

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