PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - The nation's mayors are in Rhode
Island's capital for their annual conference, with the economic
recession dominating conversations.
The meeting in Providence started Friday and runs through
Monday. It's the first for the group since the recession began and
will focus on the federal economic stimulus package. Mayors
speaking at the beginning of the conference have described trying
to fight mounting foreclosures, budget deficits and municipal
One person not attending is Vice President Joe Biden. He and
other White House officials have decided to stay away to avoid
crossing a firefighter picket line. The firefighters are working
without a contract and have been unable to resolve their dispute
with Providence Mayor David Cicilline (sis-ah-LEE'-nee).