PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) - The troubled R.I. Economic Development Corporation is losing three more board members less than a year after its taxpayer-guaranteed loan to Curt Schilling's 38 Studios fell apart.
University of Rhode Island President David Dooley and two local business leaders, Jack Templin and Cheryl Watkins Snead, have all informed Gov. Lincoln Chafee they no longer wish to serve on the EDC board, the governor's office confirmed Monday night.
Chafee spokeswoman Christine Hunsinger told WPRI.com all three have agreed to remain on the board while the governor searches for their replacements, with Snead planning to leave by March and Templin planning to leave by April. Dooley's term recently expired but he said he'll remain in place until he is replaced.
"I look forward to continuing to work with you in other ways to help continue improving Rhode Island's economy," Dooley wrote in a letter to Chafee dated Feb. 8 and obtained by WPRI.com.
The board was supposed to gather on Monday night but the meeting has been postponed until next Monday, March 4. Chafee has been in Washington attending the winter meeting of the National Governors Association.
The EDC has been in turmoil since Schilling's company went bankrupt last June, leaving taxpayers on the hook for a $75 million loan guarantee the agency extended to the firm in 2010. While Dooley and Snead were both on the board when it approved the 38 Studios deal, they missed the meeting where the vote was actually taken.
The EDC's last executive director, Keith Stokes, resigned after the 38 Studios debacle, and earlier this month Governor Chafee's pick to replace him, longtime EDC staffer William Parsons, backed out of taking the job. Chafee told reporters last week he hopes to nominate a new executive director as well as new EDC board members soon.
The EDC is supposed to have a 13-member board of directors, but as of Monday night its website only lists five members other than the three who are now lame ducks after telling Chafee they're leaving the board. The remaining five are Chafee, Karl Wadensten, George Nee, Jerauld Adams and Stanley Weiss.
Templin, Adams and Weiss were among Chafee's four initial picks for the EDC board, along with CVS Caremark executive Helena Foulkes, who resigned last year over disagreements with the governor over the agency's direction after 38 Studios.
One of the 12 board seats, which Dooley currently holds, is reserved for a representative from higher education.
An earlier version of this story incorrectly described Daniel Sullivan as an active member of the EDC board; Sullivan's term expired last year and he has asked not to be reappointed, though he has not technically left the board yet because a successor hasn't been confirmed.
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