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Saturday, May 19, 2012

RISC-y moves

RI Statewide Coalition changes leaders, prepares to move out of Charlestown
By Will Collette

The Staley family’s family business, the RI Statewide Coalition, is undergoing some major changes. A new RISC Executive Director is replacing Harriet Lloyd, daughter of RISC founder and Shelter Harbor scion Harry Staley. Donna Perry, public relations flack and sister of uber-rightwing WPRO shock jock John DiPetro, takes over that position. 

Lloyd will become RISC President, and according to news reports, will focus primarily on fund-raising. She will replace James Beale who is leaving the organization.

RISC also plans to move from its long-time headquarters office in Charlestown to a new location, reportedly in Warwick

RISC is a kissing cousin of the Charlestown Citizens Alliance, sharing key leaders and board members throughout both organizations’ histories.

When the CCA needed help to push back a proposal by town Democrats for a $1000 Homestead Tax Credit, they turned to RISC to organize last December’s “riot of the rich” – a group of out-of-state millionaire homeowners who provided political cover for CCA Council members Boss Tom Gentz and Deputy Dan Slattery, and their close ally, Councilor Lisa DiBello, to vote down the proposal.

But if RISC moves up north, and the drive to Charlestown becomes “way far” for them, the CCA may not be able to count on them in their struggles ahead.

RISC and its 501(c)(3) “charity,” the RISC Foundation, was founded in 2003 as an anti-tax, anti-Narragansett Indian group. They have expanded their portfolio slightly to include broad attacks on public workers. In most respects, RISC is an older version of the Tea Party.

According to RISC reported filed with the Internal Revenue Service, most of the RISC Foundation’s income, which is used to fund RISC’s operations, comes from large out-of-state donations.