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This Hour: Latest Rhode Island news, sports, business and entertainment

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Governor candidates to meet in hospitality forum

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - Rhode Island's gubernatorial candidates are set to meet in a campaign forum focused on the state's hospitality industry and the role it can play as an economic driver.

The two-hour forum Wednesday afternoon will be held at the Rhode Island Convention Center. It's sponsored by the Rhode Island Hospitality Association.

The leading Democratic candidates in the Sept. 9 primary are Providence Mayor Angel Taveras, state Treasurer Gina Raimondo and former Obama administration official Clay Pell. The Republicans are Cranston Mayor Allan Fung and businessman Ken Block.

Taveras, Raimondo and Pell have all said they want to boost the tourism industry as part of efforts to improve Rhode Island's troubled economy. Block and Fung have not released specific plans for that sector.


Taveras takes on both opponents in new TV ad

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - Gubernatorial candidate Angel Taveras (tuh-VEHR'-us) is taking on both his Democratic primary opponents in a new TV spot.

The Providence mayor released a 30-second ad Tuesday that goes after Treasurer Gina Raimondo and political newcomer Clay Pell. It suggests Raimondo is aligned with Wall Street and that Pell is ill-prepared to serve.

The narrator says, "Pell won't get things done. Raimondo works for Wall Street. Neither works for us."

Raimondo's campaign calls the ad's accusations false and says Taveras is getting desperate. A Pell spokesman says the mayor is mudslinging and Pell is staying focused on ideas.

Taveras, who trails in the money race, also sent out a fundraising email Tuesday saying his campaign could be in "deep trouble" if it can't get its message out before the Sept. 9 primary.


Ethics Commission OKs probe into Solomon

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - The state Ethics Commission has approved launching an investigation into Providence mayoral hopeful Michael Solomon following a complaint that he failed to disclose business interests.

WPRI-TV reports the commission on Tuesday approved the probe against Solomon, a Democrat and City Council president. He faces fellow Democrats Brett Smiley and Jorge Elorza in the Sept. 9 primary. The winner will go up against former Mayor Buddy Cianci, an independent, and Republican Dan Harrop.

Solomon's campaign has said any errors he made on his ethics disclosures were inadvertent. He filed several amendments to his ethics reports last week.

A Republican candidate for city council made the complaint.

The commission has six months to complete an initial investigation.


Ethics Commission to probe lawmaker's beach bid

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - The Rhode Island Ethics Commission has voted to investigate whether a state lawmaker violated ethics rules by bidding on a contract for beach concessions.

The Providence Journal reports that the commission voted Tuesday to probe the bids by Rep. Peter Palumbo for contracts at Scarborough, Roger Wheeler and Misquamicut state beaches.

The government watchdog group Common Cause Rhode Island filed a complaint with the ethics commission after reports that the Cranston Democrat bid in 2013 to host the concessions.

Palumbo was the high bidder for the 5-year contract but backed out, leaving then-Democratic Party Chairman David Caprio as the next highest bidder. Caprio then hired Palumbo to run the stands. He paid $226,640 less than Palumbo had bid.

State police are investigating.

Palumbo has not returned requests for comment.


Coast Guard assists boat off coast of Newport

NEWPORT, R.I. (AP) - A U.S. Coast Guard crew has helped a disabled vessel with three people on board after an engine overheated off the coast of Newport.

The 34-foot Kaborka was in the vicinity of Fort Adams State Park when it reported a fire shortly before 8 a.m. Tuesday. A Coast Guard crew from Station Castle Hill and the Newport harbormaster responded.

The harbormaster transferred the three people to the harbormaster's boat. No injuries were reported.

The Coast Guard says the vessel's engine overheated, causing smoke but no flames. The boat was towed into Newport Harbor.

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