Three Rhode Island watchdog groups are called on Governor Gina Raimondo and other state leaders Thursday to further investigate 38 Studios.
Members of WatchdogRI, Rhode Island Taxpayers, and the Rhode Island Center for Freedom and Prosperity are calling for more investigations after WPRI unearthed court documents which showed former House Speaker Gordon Fox was an early player in the failed 38 Studios deal; contrary to multiple comments he has made to public.
Former gubernatorial candidate and founder of WatchdogRI, Ken Block says details about the failed deal are being kept from the public by elected officials.
“We really don’t understand what has been happening with 38 Studios, our elected officials have not been truthful with us and speaking for myself I’ve really just about had it with being lied to by elected officials and we need to change that as soon as possible,” said Block.
Mike Stenhouse of RI Center for Freedom and Prosperity says investigations into 38 Studios would help politicians restore their image with the people of Rhode Island.
“Rhode Islanders are fed up with a state government that caters to a special interest agenda rather than to the people of our state, and when we determine corruption has occurred in the democratic process we demand that our political leaders take the necessary steps to expose it and root it out,” said Stenhouse.
Spokesperson for Governor Raimondo Marie Aberger responded to the groups saying:
“The Governor remains fully committed to uncovering any wrongdoing with 38 Studios. The first step, however, is to complete the ongoing litigation – this is an important and essential step in establishing facts, proving culpability, and recovering taxpayer dollars. We do not want to interfere or jeopardize this litigation in any way.”
Aberger says the governor supports the Commerce Corporation’s request to court to lift the confidentiality order surrounding the case.
In a statement, House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello said the General Assembly is not an investigative body and maintains that if a criminal investigation is warranted that he encourages the State Police, Attorney General’s office, or the FBI to do so.
All three groups also called on Governor Raimondo to make all dealing with the owner of the Pawtucket Red Sox public so that history does not repeat itself.