With a heavy heart we report the passing of beloved Union members Ron Dickinson & Kat Geary’s son Austin Dickinson. Ron is a beloved Union member and steward working in the Tower Hill Garage. Kat is also a longtime Union member working in Smithfield. Our thoughts and prayers are with Ron & Kat at this most difficult time. Details for services are listed below.

DICKINSON, AUSTIN TYLER 18 of Narrow Lane Charlestown, RI died unexpectedly on Monday April 14, 2014 at his home. Born Jacksonville, North Carolina on April 25, 1995, he was the beloved son of Ronald A. Dickinson and Tammy (Randell) Dickinson. Austin was a senior at Chariho High School in Richmond. Austin enjoyed music, walking, camping, swimming and loved being around people. Besides his parents he will be sadly missed by his stepmother; Kat Geary and stepfather; Oscar Imbrogno. He also leaves his grandparents; Ronald A. Dickinson Sr. of Richmond, RI, Richard Randell of Hope Valley and Margaret Marques of Greene, RI, and his great grandmother Elizabeth Baton of Hope Valley, RI. He also leaves many loving aunts, uncles and cousins.

Calling hours will be held on Friday evening from 4-8 PM at the S.R. Avery Funeral Home, 3A Bank St., Hope Valley, RI. Funeral service will be held on Saturday at 11:00 AM at the funeral home. Burial will follow in White Brook Cemetery, Wyoming, RI. In lieu of flowers donations may be made in Austin’s memory to; made payable to Chariho Student Activity; Attn: Jennifer Dunkins; Director of Special Education, 455A Switch Road, Wood River Junction, RI 02894. – See more at:


DILORENZO, RICHARD P. 59, passed away Monday morning unexpectedly in his family’s Athens, ME camp. Richard was the beloved husband and best friend of Ellen F. (Curtin/Marsella) DiLorenzo for twenty five years; and father to Shane R. DiLorenzo of Cranston; and to Jennifer L. Marsella, formerly of Phoenix, AZ and currently of Providence, RI. Other family members Richard leaves behind are his mother, Vincenza (Palmaccio) DiLorenzo of Cranston; brother Joseph DiLorenzo, MD and his late wife, Kathleen Moffitt, PhD, of Saunderstown; and sister and brother-in-law, Mary Ann and Donald Borrelli; brothers-in-law William A. Curtin and John E. Curtin. Richard grew up in Cranston and many of his fondest memories were of being surrounded by his friends and family. He graduated Cranston High School West and went on to RI Trade Shops. Richard loved spending time with his uncle, doing repair work at his garage, Johnny D’s on Cranston Street. He also worked at Central Nurseries on and off throughout the years. His next job took him to New England Telephone in 1983. Richard retired from Verizon in 2010. Currently, he was co-owner and building manager of West Bay Medical Associates II. Richard and Ellen enjoyed turning their house into a home, and raising Jennifer and Shane. They enjoyed the times they spent together visiting the woods of Maine, as well as the Loudon, NH NASCAR racetrack. In the early 1990s, the family began visiting the northwest region of Maine, and fell in love with the landscape and fun activities such as snowmobiling and ATVing, nights around the campfires, laughing with friends and building their small retirement Shangri la. This was their “home away from home”. In May 2013, Richard and Shane both graduated from MTTI with certifications in motorcycle and small engine repair. Richard was a proud parent of both Jennifer and Shane. Jennifer returned to RI to finally complete her BA at RIC in May 2009. He loved having his family all together, whether just eating a meal, watching football, or attending hockey games. It didn’t matter as long as they were together. “We got to do the things we wanted to do.” His funeral will be held from the NARDOLILLO FUNERAL HOME & Crematory, 1278 Park Avenue, Cranston on Saturday at 10 a.m. followed by a Mass of Christian Burial in St. Mary’s Church, Cranston at 11 a.m. Burial will take place in St. Ann Cemetery, Cranston. VISITING HOURS are Friday 5-8 p.m. Visit for online condolences. – See more at:

Brother Jason Spencer, from the Apponaug Garage is leading a team for a head shaving fundraiser aimed at curing childhood cancer. On Tues March 25th, 2014 5:00pm-10:00pm @ Whiskey Republic. Any member wishing to join Jason’s team in this effort or to donate please click the link below.

Jason Spencer

It is with great sadness Local 2323 report’s the passing of long time member Tony Alves, he was a beloved member for over 45 years. Tony is also the father of Robert & David Alves, both current IBEW Local 2323 members. Our thoughts & prayers are with the Alves Family.

ALVES, ANTHONY L. 84 of Howland Avenue, died Tuesday, March 11, 2014 at the Philip Hulitar Hospice Center. He was the husband of the late Barbara L. (Haggstrom) Alves. He was born in Bristol, a son of the late Antonio and Mariana (Amaral) Alves. Mr. Alves was a Communications Technician for New England Telephone and was a 45 year member of I.B.E.W. 2323. He played Senior League Softball as a pitcher for many years and also represented Rhode Island in the Senior Olympics for softball. He was an avid fisherman. He leaves three sons, Steven A. Alves of Warren, David E. Alves and his wife Estel of East Providence and Robert P. Alves and his wife Connie of Riverside and three grandchildren, David, Elisha and Robert. He was the brother of the late Edward Alves. His funeral will be held on Saturday at 9:00 AM from the PERRY-McSTAY FUNERAL HOME, 2555 Pawtucket Avenue, East Providence with a Mass of Christian Burial at 10:00 AM in St. Martha’s Church, Pawtucket Avenue. Burial will be in Gate of Heaven Cemetery. Calling hours Friday 4-8. In lieu of flowers contributions to Home & Hospice Care of RI, 1085 North Main Street, Providence, RI 02904 would be appreciated. – See more at:

The Local Union office is experiencing telephone difficulties. We are in the process of having the problem fixed. If you have any difficulty in reaching the Union office please see your steward they have alternate ways to reach the office staff on your behalf. Thank you for your patience.

IBEW Local 2323 is please to announce Pathway to a College Degree program start on Monday, March 10th 2014 at 6pm.

The first class offered will be Workplace Psychology. Any member who has not already signed up but is interested in attending please contact the Union office.

IBEW Local 2323 will be holding a Spaghetti Dinner in Honor of Joe Stravinky

When: Sunday March 16, 2014 @ 1:00pm

Where: Ibew Local 2323 Union Hall – 22 Amflex Drive, Cranston RI 02920

Tickets: $20 Adults / $5 Children – Contact Ray Silvestri 401-413-8937

There will be games and entertainment for the kids.

By George H. Nee

In 2014, the Rhode Island AFL-CIO plans to pursue a legislative agenda that is pro-growth, pro-worker, pro-union and, yes, pro-business. These four basic tenets have served as the basis of our legislative activities, and will continue in the future, to ensure that all Rhode Islanders prosper and succeed. We have made our most progress when business, labor and government have worked together to improve our economy.

For its economy to grow, our state needs workers to fill the jobs of the 21st century. We are pleased that Gov. Lincoln Chafee recognizes the skills gap and his fiscal year 2015 budget proposes $1.6 million for workforce development. However, we must go further to retrain Rhode Islanders who are being left by the wayside because of a lack of technical skills.

We will also advocate increased funding for adult literacy programs. Workforce development and adult literacy would help workers come up to speed and excel. To avoid a future skills gap, we must be willing to invest in education from an early age. The Rhode Island AFL-CIO will advocate funding for full-day kindergarten to ensure that our school children are prepared to compete in an increasingly global economy.

To get workers to their jobs in a safe, affordable, dependable and environmentally friendly manner, a sustainable and reliable funding stream for the Rhode Island Public Transit Authority needs to be in place.

Apprenticeships have long been an avenue for younger workers to gain the skills and experience necessary to have a fulfilling career in the building and construction trades. The Rhode Island AFL-CIO supported the restoration of the Historic Preservation Tax Credit Program requiring certified apprenticeship programs on projects over $10 million, and we fully support the increased funding in this year’s budget. Businesses benefit from tax credits, Rhode Island’s rich architectural history is preserved, workers are put to work, and the programs teach a new generation of workers the skills needed to construct and maintain Rhode Island’s infrastructure.

We will also advocate prescribed apprenticeship hours on all publicly funded state and quasi-public projects to ensure that public money is being spent on reputable contractors while providing training opportunities for a new generation in the building and construction trades. We will continue to support the Rhode Island College/ University of Rhode Island Joint Nursing Education Center as an integral part of the Dynamo House Project.

Governor Chafee’s budget succinctly states what the Rhode Island AFL-CIO has been saying for years: “[The] state’s economy, its workers and its businesses are harmed by the existence of an illegal underground economy in which individuals and businesses conceal their activities from government licensing, regulatory and taxing authorities.” We need a clear, strong and enforceable definition of employee misclassification to stop the rampant abuse of employees by unscrupulous employers. Business owners who follow the rules are harmed by those who improperly classify their employees; the state is robbed of substantial tax revenues; workers are cheated of wages and benefits; and union members are harmed when their work is undercut by those willing to flout the laws.

We are supporting a raise in the minimum wage to $9 an hour on Jan. 1, 2015, then to $10 an hour in 2016, and indexed to inflation going forward. This measure would greatly benefit Rhode Island businesses and workers, and spur growth in the local economy.

According to the Economic Policy Institute, raising the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour would affect approximately 65,000 Rhode Island workers and have a $77.7 million impact on the state’s gross domestic product. This is money that will be spent in Rhode Island right away. Having a job should lift a worker out of poverty, not trap him or her in it.

Rhode Island’s most vulnerable citizens deserve to be treated with dignity and respect. That is why we have long advocated increased funding for programs benefiting the developmentally disabled and residents in nursing homes. Our state should support the effort by the Rhode Island Coalition for the Homeless to increase funding for rental vouchers to combat chronic homelessness.

Rhode Island should continue to lead by example and keep Victory Day as a state holiday, recognizing the sacrifices made by millions to preserve our freedom. We will vigorously oppose any changes to the status of Victory Day.

Our legislative agenda is one of fairness, growth, education and opportunity that lets all Rhode Islanders from all walks of life succeed and thrive together. Because of the depth and breadth of the issues supported by the Rhode Island AFL-CIO for the benefit of all, we truly are the “people’s lobby.”

George H. Nee is president of the Rhode Island AFL-CIO.