PawSox trying to rally stadium support in speaker’s district

(Image provided by PawSox)

CRANSTON, R.I. (WPRI) — One day after Rhode Island’s House Speaker declared the Senate’s plan for a new PawSox stadium dead, the minor league team is taking the issue right to the people in Nicholas Mattiello’s Cranston district.

Mattiello has maintained that two-thirds of Rhode Islanders – including many in his district – don’t support the current $83 million proposal, so he can’t support it in its current form either.

The PawSox are hoping to change the hearts and minds of those people, inviting 200 people in Cranston to attend a meeting where they can ask questions about the plans and voice any concerns they may have.

Mattiello has said while many of his constituents are fans of the team, they’re not fans of the price the public is being asked to pay. While he said the risk for the public is too high, Gov. Gina Raimondo disagrees.

“It’s disappointing. I think it would be a shame if the PawSox left Pawtucket, left Rhode Island,” Raimondo said. “I’m a supporter of the deal that’s on the table. It protects taxpayers.”

While Rhode Island lawmakers debate the stadium, the City of Worcester is making a hard push for the team to move to Massachusetts. Officials there have met with team executive several times already and Gov. Charlie Baker has embraced the idea of bringing the PawSox to the Commonwealth.

Raimondo urged lawmakers to pass the bill.

“The deal in front of the legislature I think is a good one for taxpayers and I wish the legislature would do its job and pass it,” she said.