- Associated Press - Thursday, August 2, 2018

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - The Providence City Solicitor says a contract between a former city council president and a local news website is “invalid and unenforceable.”

The current City Council President, David Salvatore, publicized the contract, which involved paying GoLocalProv $67,500 over two years to publish meeting notices, last week. The Providence Journal reports Salvatore is calling on the website to return the money.

The city’s law department reviewed the contract and found it avoided going through the competitive bidding project. The contract itself was initiated by former City Council President Luis Aponte, and the site was founded by former City Councilman Josh Fenton.

Fenton says Salvatore publicized the contract in retaliation for negative coverage. Aponte denies there was any cooperation between him and the website beyond sharing public meeting information and metrics.

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