Senator Reed, the Ranking Member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, attended the official christening of the USS Illinois submarine with First Lady Michelle Obama at the Electric Boat Shipyard in Groton, CT.
The USS Illinois (SSN-786) is the 13th Virginia Class nuclear submarine and is currently under construction at Electric Boat facilities in Groton. In June of 2014, Reed joined the First Lady for the keel laying ceremony at Electric Boat’s Quonset Point Shipyard, where construction on the vessel began.
Senator Reed took part in the URI Pharmacy Outreach Program’s blood pressure screening event during a visit to the Leon Mathieu Senior Center in Pawtucket.
The outreach program visits communities throughout the state as a free resource and aims to provide Rhode Islanders with the most accurate and up-to-date information regarding medications. The program has been serving Rhode Island for more than 25 years.
Senator Reed joined officials at the Norman Bird Sanctuary for a tour of the 325-acre bird sanctuary, nature preserve, and museum.
The Norman Bird Sanctuary is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and contains 7 miles of hiking trails. Senator Reed helped secure $2.3 million in federal Hurricane Sandy Coastal Resiliency Competitive grants, a portion of which is being used by the Norman Bird Sanctuary, along with their partners -- Town of Middletown, Aquidneck Island Land Trust, and the Center for Ecosystem Research -- for a variety of environmental stewardship and coastal resiliency projects that are designed to rebuild wildlife habitats, prevent storm water damage, and provide environmental education programs to the public around watershed issues.
U.S. Senator Jack Reed joined with lobstermen and women in Newport at the Lobster Shack on Pier Nine to celebrate the first annual National Lobster Day. The Newport Lobster Shack Kitchen is a co-op that serves seafood that is freshly caught by local fishermen and prepared in a dockside kitchen.
In early August, the U.S. Senate unanimously approved a resolution designating Friday, September 25, 2015 as “National Lobster Day.” The resolution, cosponsored by U.S. Senator Jack Reed, Susan Collins (R-ME), and five New England colleagues, recognizes the historic and economic importance of the lobster industry to Rhode Island and other states, and invited lobster lovers to mark their culinary calendars for the last Friday in September.
“We’re proud of our local lobstermen and women and the economic activity they generate. These businesses are unique and irreplaceable. For generations, their hard work, resiliency, and dedication have been a vital part of our coastal communities. As consumer demand for sustainably harvested, wild-caught New England lobsters continues to grow, ‘National Lobster Day’ offers an opportunity to celebrate and appreciate an industry that supports hundreds of Rhode Island families and helps bring tourists to the area to enjoy delicious, freshly caught lobster and seafood,” said Senator Reed, who enjoyed lobster bisque, lobster cakes, and a lobster roll.
Senator Reed joined Warwick Mayor Scott Avedisian in announcing $949,549 in federal funding for the Warwick Fire Department. This federal Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) will allow Warwick firefighters to complete specialized rescue training and gain technical expertise aimed at better preparing them for a variety of emergencies such as potential building collapses or other industrial accidents. This marks the second major AFG award Warwick has received over the last year.
The City of Warwick has a number of large-scale construction projects -- including the expansion of the runway at T.F. Green Airport, transportation infrastructure projects, improvements to public facilities, and wind turbine projects. The Warwick Fire Department applied for the competitive AFG award to help offset the cost of training their firefighters on specific emergency response techniques, such as trench rescue, which involves excavating or rescuing individuals who have become trapped beneath the surface. The courses also cover other specialized areas, and can help firefighters update their skills and learn new techniques in rope rescue, confined space, swift water, vehicle, machinery, structural collapse, and tower scenarios.
“I commend the Warwick Fire Department for winning this grant to enhance their rescue capabilities and better serve the public. Firefighters do so much more than just fight fires and these federal dollars will help ensure they have the specialized training they need to effectively respond to a variety of search and rescue incidents,” said Senator Reed, who supported the Department’s application for the grant funding in a letter to FEMA.
Senator Reed joined with Curt Spalding, the Regional Administrator of the EPA, along with Central Falls Mayor James Diossa, Pawtucket Mayor Donald R. Grebien, the Congressional Delegation, and environmental leaders, to announce the awarding approximately $1.32 million in Brownfield Assessment, Job Training and Cleanup Grant funding to municipalities and organizations across the state of Rhode Island.
These federal EPA Brownfield grants provide communities with funding necessary to assess, clean up and ultimately redevelop contaminated properties, boost local economies and leverage jobs while protecting public health and the environment.
“I am pleased to have secured federal brownfield funding to help communities throughout the state unlock local redevelopment opportunities and restore these sites to productive use,” said Senator Reed, a member of the Appropriations Subcommittee that oversees federal funding for EPA programs. In 2002, Reed helped pass legislation making this federal funding possible. “Not only will this federal investment help protect public health and the environment, but it will also allow communities to work in partnership to revitalize these sites and strengthen the local economy.”
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