Ward 6

Councilman Michael Correia

Councilman Michael Correia has been a member of City Council since 2011. In January of 2019 he was elected by a majority of his peers to serve as the Council’s President Pro Tempore. He represents Ward 6, which includes the neighborhoods of Manton and Mount Pleasant. Councilman Correia Chairman of the Committee on Public Works; Vice Chairman of the Committee on Urban Redevelopment, Renewal, and Planning; and is a member of the Committee on Claims and Pending Suits.

 

READ HIS FULL BIO HERE >

Ward 6: Manton & Mount Pleasant

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Statement from Council President Pro Tempore Michael Corriea Regarding Operation “Bussed Out”

Today the Providence Police Department announced the outcome of Operation “Bussed Out” which was a four-month-long investigation into drug trafficking in Kennedy Plaza. I was proud to stand with our hard-working Police Officers and their Commanders who worked diligently to make this operation a success. But let it be known, that this is not just a Kennedy Plaza issue, this is a city-wide issue and those wishing to traffic in illegal substances should be on notice that this won’t be tolerated in Kennedy Plaza or anywhere else in our great City. I commend the hard-working men and women of the Providence Police Department’s Narcotics Bureau for their dedication and determination.

Michael Correia, President Pro Tempore
Providence City Council
Councilman – Ward 6

City Council Supports Redevelopment of Historic Former “Projo” Building

This TSA is one of the first that will generate a guaranteed funding source for the City’s Affordable Housing Trust 

At last night’s City Council meeting a majority of the council voted in favor of granting the developer of the property located at 203 Westminster Street a 20-year Tax Stabilization Agreement (TSA) which will be the first since the Council passed the Affordable Housing Trust Fund – that requires the City’s Tax Assessor to deposit 10% of their annual tax contributions to the fund.

The Affordable Housing Trust Fund was passed in July of 2019, and requires 10% of TSAs tax payments to go directly to a fund to help support affordable housing projects across the City. This TSA, by end of its terms, will have generated at least $500K for the Affordable Housing Trust Fund based on estimates provided by the Tax Assessor’s office.

Council President Sabina Matos (Ward 15) stated, “Our City is bustling with new hotels, restaurants, and attractions. Our skyline is rapidly changing. However, some of our most precious historic buildings need a little extra help to get them back online. This building, located directly across the street from City Hall, sticks out as a sore reminder that opportunities to redevelop our most endangered buildings don’t come around often. While there is definitely room for discussion regarding the role and scope of TSA’s, this development meets a specific criteria for me: the condition of the building necessitates it, it would help save one our most storied buildings, and it’d be making a significant contribution towards affordable housing efforts across our city over the course of the agreement.”

The developer of the property located at 203 Westminster Street and the adjacent property, formerly the Providence Journal Building and the former Kresge Department Store, will be turned into a hotel that would create 233 full-time construction jobs, and 154 full-time jobs after the building is completed. The property owner is currently paying over $136K in property taxes per year and by the end of the TSA they will be paying over $516K in property tax per year. Over the twenty years of the agreement, the development will have contributed an additional $3.6 million in tax revenue. This is in addition to sales tax, hotel occupancy tax, and income taxes that will be realized by the completion of this project.

“I have been on record that I am not in favor of 20-year TSAs,” stated City Council Deputy Majority Leader Mary Kay Harris (Ward 11). “I pushed to have the Council pass an ordinance that codified monies from our TSAs be directed to support our neighborhoods, and those that needed the support the most. When I see people without roofs over their heads, or living in fear of losing their home, or can’t afford to fix their homes because they are on a fixed income – how can I in good conscience support such projects? By adding this funding source for affordable housing, it begins to chip away at the hard work that we must accomplish to make equity a reality. This project will deposit an estimated $500K into a fund that will have a direct impact on our community’s and that is why I am standing in support of this project. This will have a direct impact on the residents we represent, and that is worthwhile.”

Senior Deputy Majority Leader Nicholas J. Narducci Jr. (Ward 4) stated, “I have always stood on the side of Unions, and I still do. That said we must look at the bigger picture of economic development for our city and the funding that this project will provide for our Affordable Housing Trust which will have a direct impact on the most vulnerable members of our community. These buildings have stood abandoned and vacant for years. We have a developer that is willing to make a sizeable investment in our City and I believe that we need to support progress, not stand in opposition of it.”

The developers proposed TSA was continued indefinitely by the Committee on Finance, but with a majority of the Council’s support it was discharged from Committee and sent to the full Council for a vote.

“I look at the old ProJo building every day from my office and see its potential,” stated City Council President Pro Tempore Michael Correia (Ward 6). “I believe in order for our City to continue the trajectory we are on we must embrace development, but with an eye on the greater good. We have multiple buildings in our city center that have been abandoned and are rapidly deteriorating and it is creating a negative narrative about our downtown. After so many of us have worked so hard to redevelop this district to become an economic engine and a great place to shop, eat, and live for our residents and visitors alike.”

Through the TSA the developer is also required to use 10% of the construction cost on women and minority owned businesses; they are required to make a good faith effort buy construction materials from Providence based businesses; they must develop a First Source Agreement with the Director of First Source Providence; 100% of hours worked on the project will be performed by trade construction subcontractors who have or are affiliated with an apprenticeship program; and over the term of the TSA will deposit nearly $138K into the Parks and Recreation Trust Fund that goes to support the City’s parks, pools, waterparks, and recreation centers.

City Council Leaders Introduced a Series of Measures to Expand Safety, Quality and Workforce Development in Construction

At tonight’s City Council meeting council leaders introduced a series of amendments to Chapters 14 and 21 of the Code of Ordinances. Together, these changes will create baseline standards for quality, safety, and workforce development in the construction industry.

Amendments to Chapter 14, introduced by Council President Matos, Councilor Pro Temp Correia, and Councilors Miller and Salvatore create a  citywide construction contractor registration process that includes measures to prevent the misclassification of workers as temporary employees.

“Regulating contractors with a registration process protects the physical and economic health of our city residents,” stated Councilor Rachel M. Miller. “By and large, I believe contractors follow the law, but, in an industry that is notoriously hard to regulate, any company that is cutting corners affects the industry and affects the health and well-being of our community. As a community organizer in Providence, I saw three big problems in the industry: workers who had to fight for for their claim to unpaid wages, also known as wage theft; workers who were injured on the job only to find that their employer was illegally classifying their employment as 1099 (or contract work) leaving them with no recourse for workers’ compensation; and workers who worked for a contractor who disregarded health and safety training, not even requiring workers complete the most basic ten hour safety class, OSHA 10.”

The amendments to Chapter 14 require that a contractor who does over $100,000 in construction business per year register with the City’s Board of Licenses every two years. In order to successfully register, an applicant must not have recent wage and hour or health and safety violations. It also must be up to date on its taxes. The $100 fee collected every two years will support enforcement and monitoring of this new statute.

Amendments to Chapter 21, introduced by Council President Matos and Council Pro Tempore Correia strengthen provisions for workforce development through apprenticeship and set a wage standard for work completed with the support of Tax Stabilization Agreements.

“When we put public dollars to work in the form of tax stabilization agreements, we make a commitment to both the private developer and to the residents of the city,” said Council President Sabina Matos. “This is an opportunity to continue to strengthen our TSA policy to ensure that we are getting a return on that investment – in the form of new development and revitalized buildings and also an investment in our workforce. For many years, development tax treaties have required 100% apprenticeship utilization. Apprenticeship is the pathway that turns a one time job into a lifetime career. But, although the ordinance required it, there were still loopholes that allowed that provision to be disregarded. Tonight we’re introducing changes that strengthen apprenticeship requirements. Additionally, we’re setting a standard for competitive wages that will lift up the working women and men in the industry. The City Council believes that there’s always a possibility for a positive ripple effect in our neighborhoods when we pass a TSA, but with these changes, that possibility becomes a promise.”

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