Valley Breeze

The North Providence Breeze 12-04-13

The Valley Breeze Newspapers serving the Northern Rhode Island towns of Cumberland, Lincoln, Woonsocket, Smithfield, North Smithfield, Pawtucket, North Providence, Scituate, Foster, and Glocester

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DECEMBER 4-10, 2013 A Valley Breeze Newspaper FREE Breeze The north providence DESTINATION NORTH POLE KEEPING IT LOCAL Departing from Woonsocket, Polar Express more magical than ever. LIVING @ "Like" us on Residents heeded message, shopped hometown stores Saturday. PAGE 9 Search for The Valley Breeze Newspapers Town officials to consider rules on tree clearing By ETHAN SHOREY Breeze Staff Writer NORTH PROVIDENCE – Town officials, intent on avoiding another mass clearing of trees without their knowledge or approval, say they'll consider new rules on how and when people can take trees down. There are currently scant regulations mandating that the town's tree warden, Faye Amsden, must inspect trees on town property before they can come down, but what is missing is a comprehensive ordinance governing the destruction and preservation of trees, said officials. Richard Lipsitz, the pres- FEOLA I want the green thing daddy saw online, Santa! ident of Waterman Engineering, first made the suggestion that town officials institute new rules on tree removal during a North Providence Planning Board meeting last month. Lipsitz was responding to criticism directed at his client, developer Joe Romano, that he failed to contact town officials about his plan to level dozens of trees to make way for a duplex development on Smith Street. The clearing, which happened before Lipsitz and his company were hired, was blamed for flooding See TREES, Page 15 Firefighter Campbell disputes some claims Lombardi says he's 'cost town big' By ETHAN SHOREY Breeze Staff Writer Breeze Photo By Charlie Lawrence Rain did not stop the festivities at the annual North Providence Town Hall Tree Lighting ceremony Sunday. Santa listened to dozens of boys and girls, each with a special request. Courtney Littlefield, of North Providence, watches as her brother Robert Littlefield, Jr. tells Santa he wants, "that green thing daddy was looking at online." NORTH PROVIDENCE – The case of the rookie 52-year-old firefighter, Stephen Campbell Sr., who retired on a disability pension just a decade after he was hired caused a stir last week when it was reported he will end up costing the town and state an estimated $1.4 million over the next 25 years. Adding fuel to the fire, Mayor Charles Lombardi told The Breeze Monday that Campbell has already cost local taxpayers an estimated $300,000 extra for 10 "injured on duty" claims from 2005 to 2011, a period when he spent 56 months out of work. Data compiled by Fire Chief See PENSION, Page 7 Hear for the Holidays Finally... a hearing device you'll actually WANT to wear! $4 0 0 O FF a p a ir ofN era Pro Exp ires D ec. 13, 2 0 13 Dr. Mary Kay Uchmanowicz, Licensed Audiologist, 30 Years 151 Douglas Pike, Smithfield, RI 02917 401-349-0456 ©2013 Breeze Publications Inc. Leonard Albanese shows that the $300,000 figure was calculated based on all the hours other firefighters filled in for Campbell while he was out. The firefighters earned time and a half overtime pay, at an average annual salary of $40,000, according to Albanese. Tim White, investigative reporter for WPRI 12, first reported that Campbell worked a little more than half of the 10 years he was employed by the town of North Providence, retiring with an accidental disability pension on Oct. 30 after the state retirement board granted it on Sept. 11. He was also awarded $120,000 in back pay. For a more detailed version of this story, or to comment on

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