A conversation with Ken Mendonça

Kenneth J. Mendonça

Mr. Mendonça has been employed by Rite-Solutions for 16 years as a systems engineer/program manager supporting the Naval Undersea Warfare Center. He’s worked in the Aquidneck Island defense industry for more than 27 years and before that was employed by a high technology firm in Middletown for nine years.

He was elected as District 72 representative in November 2016 and served one term. As representative, he was a member of the House Committee on Finance, and the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs.

You can find more information about him at www.electkenri.com.

What can legislators do to address the Covid-19 pandemic, particularly when it comes to helping struggling families and small businesses? “First we need to get the General Assembly back in session,” Mr. Mendonça said, adding that lawmakers should come together “as a coalition and force the speaker to hold hearings and get the body back in. We’ve had over 790 Covid deaths related to nursing homes and we have a committee, the House Oversight Committee, that should be looking into these and making sure we don’t have another outbreak. That falls on the body.”

As for specific legislation, he said the General Assembly needs to clarify the guidelines for businesses to follow during the pandemic, as there’s been confusion. About four weeks ago, he said a Portsmouth business was given a clean slate by an inspector, only to be told just a week later — and by a different inspector — there were some issues that needed to be addressed.

“As we lose businesses and people get unemployed, and we lose the revenue from those businesses and the tax income and various licensing fees we charge, it rolls back on you and I — the property tax holder.”