2018-05-10 / Island History

ISLAND HISTORY

The American Civil Liberties Union is urging the police department to stop providing a traffic detail during Catholic services at St. Mark Church, The Jamestown Press reported May 16, 2002.

According to Steven Brown, executive director of the Rhode Island chapter, he received a complaint from a resident who said taxpayer money that should not be used for religious events. Brown agreed, saying the detail is a violation of the First Amendment in that “any provision of governmental services that favor religious entities over nonreligious ones, or that provides special benefits to particular religions, cannot withstand constitutional scrutiny.”

If St. Mark needs a police detail, he said, the parish can pay for it “in the same manner as other private entities.”

100 years ago — May 10, 1918 (Newport Mercury)

Thomas Carr Watson Jr., a junior at Brown University, has been tapped as a member of the Cammarian Club.

The university club consists of upcoming seniors who are elected because of their prominence in studies, athletics and campus life. They also act as a student governing board in connection with the college faculty. Election into the Cammarian Club is one of the highest honors for a Brown student.

75 years ago — May 14, 1943 (Newport Daily News)

The councilors are asking taxpayers whether they should move the bathhouses from the town beach to the ball field to use as a fieldhouse.

According to Albert Anderson, a member of the recreation commission, the building should be moved and used for toilet facilities for watchers at the observation tower. Thomas Sheehan, council president, suggested a petition to determine whether there is enough interest to call a special meeting.

50 years ago — May 10, 1968 (Newport Daily News)

A fire hydrant on Narragansett Avenue was snapped from its base after it was struck by a car. The driver, Earles S. Sharpe Jr. 21, of Walcott Avenue, was not injured. Although police estimated damage to the hydrant at $350, the car does not need repairs.

25 years ago — May 13, 1993 (The Jamestown Press)

The newly adopted leash law will not be enforced until the town receives an opinion from its solicitor, James Donnelly.

According to Town Administrator Frances Shocket, the outgoing council may have inadvertently violated the charter when it passed the amended ordinance. According to the charter, the council can adopt an ordinance with or without changes, but if it is amended as “to any matter of substance,” it must be advertised to allow for public comment. The council amended the proposed 24-hour prohibition down to a nine-hour leash law. Shocket wants a written opinion from Donnelly on whether that is a matter of substance.

10 years ago — May 15, 2008 (The Jamestown Press)

The Dutch Island Boat Yard, which has gone into receivership, is up for auction, according to Town Administrator Bruce Keiser.

According to Keiser, the winning bidder will not be able to resume operations without council approval. Councilman Bob Sutton suggested a marina might not be the best option for West Ferry.

“Maybe we could use it for something else that would be more beneficial to the town,” he said.

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