If you have friends or relatives who would like their own free copy of this daily briefing about Rhode Island, tell them they can sign up here.


Happy Thursday and welcome to Rhode Map, your daily guide to everything happening in the Ocean State. I’m Dan McGowan and I’d be happy to take Prince Harry’s spot in the royal family. Follow me on Twitter @DanMcGowan or send tips to Dan.McGowan@globe.com.

Former Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chafee launched his Libertarian bid for the presidency Wednesday, calling for the country to have an “active, opened-minded discussion” about criminal justice reform that includes the decriminalization of drugs.


If he wants to learn more about how to get it done, he might want to take a trip to his home state this afternoon.

That’s because a group of lawmakers and advocates are hosting a conversation at the State House with Dr. João Goulão, who is known as Portugal’s drug czar. Goulão helped craft his country’s plan to decriminalize all drugs and administer administrative penalties in most possession cases.

The Portuguese policy has been widely hailed as a success, helping to curb drug use and overdoses in that country.

Chafee stopped short of saying whether he was referring to all substances, telling Marijuana Moment that “it starts with a broad conversation and getting everybody involved - law enforcement, health officials, and that’s the process.”

“And there are other models around the world, whether it’s Portugal or Uruguay or Holland, and we can learn from them,” Chafee said.

Today’s discussion at the State House library is hosted by Representative Scott Slater, the Center of Biomedical Research Excellence (COBRE) on Opioids and Overdose, the Substance Use Policy, Education, & Recovery Political Action Committee, and the Family Task Force.


Governor Gina Raimondo is widely expected to include in her budget next week a proposal to legalize the recreational use of marijuana, but House and Senate leaders have said they will not support it.


Rhode Map wants to hear from you. If you've got a scoop or a link to an interesting news story in Rhode Island, e-mail us at RInews@globe.com.


Each day, Rhode Map offers a cheat sheet breaking down what's happening in Rhode Island. Have an idea? E-mail us at RInews@globe.com.

Thanks for reading. Send comments and suggestions to dan.mcgowan@globe.com, or follow me on Twitter @DanMcGowan. See you on Monday.

Please tell your friends about Rhode Map! They can sign up here. The Globe has other e-mail newsletters on topics ranging from breaking news alerts to sports, politics, business, and entertainment -- check them out.

Dan McGowan can be reached at dan.mcgowan@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter at @danmcgowan.