Financially-troubled Rhode Island fire district files for Chapter 9 bankruptcy


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PROVIDENCE, Rhode Island — A Rhode Island fire district is seeking bankruptcy protection.

Gov. Lincoln Chafee announced on Tuesday that a state-appointed lawyer and the receiver for the Central Coventry Fire District filed a petition in U.S. Bankruptcy Court to begin Chapter 9 restructuring proceedings.

Chafee called the move unfortunate, but said without an agreement with the firefighters union and restructuring of other debts, bankruptcy was the only remaining option.

The governor said the cost of running the fire district "has risen beyond the willingness of the taxpayers to pay."

Chafee said he expected the district to emerge from bankruptcy with a "reorganized and downsized operation."

The district has been in receivership since 2012.

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