Mayor talking Hasbro with state leaders

Mayor talking Hasbro with state leaders

PAWTUCKET – Mayor Donald Grebien says he has reached out and will hold separate meetings this week with Gov. Gina Raimondo, House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello and Senate President Dominick Ruggerio prior to their planned Dec. 11 sit-down on the future of city-based toymaker Hasbro.

It was recently reported that Raimondo has scheduled a meeting with Mattiello and Ruggerio, said Grebien, and he subsequently set up meetings with all three for this week, to be held prior to the governor’s summit.

“The city of Pawtucket has been in contact with Hasbro officials and has met with CommerceRI since the press conference,” he said, referencing a press conference he held at City Hall on Nov. 7 where he emphasized the importance of keeping Hasbro in Pawtucket instead of letting the company go elsewhere, including to neighboring Providence. “The state has the responsibility and the tools to keep Hasbro in Pawtucket and we are looking forward to sitting down at the table with all of the leaders to make this happen.”

During the conversation with CommerceRI officials, “the city made its position clear and we are confident Commerce, who has the lead on this, will work with Hasbro to maintain and enhance their presence in Pawtucket,” said Grebien.

Providence Business News reported last week that the three state leaders are planning to meet Dec. 11 to discuss how to respond to Hasbro considering a move of its corporate headquarters from Newport Avenue in Pawtucket to somewhere else. The company has not ruled out modernizing its current location.

Mattiello spokesman Larry Berman told PBN that the three will be strategizing how to proceed. The three are expected to discuss whether the state should offer Hasbro incentives to keep its headquarters in Pawtucket or within Rhode Island.

Grebien and his team have said that it’s important for the state to help keep this important company in Pawtucket, but the city is limited in what it can offer on its own.