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Today on Beacon Hill

9:00am Generation Citizens Civics Day, Second Floor

Must-Reads

Baker administration accused of denying shelter to homeless mothers » Boston Globe Governor Charlie Baker's longstanding push to end the practice of putting homeless families in motels at state expense has resulted in Massachusetts illegally denying shelter to the Commonwealth's mos…

Is Donald Trump a Threat to Democracy? » New York Times Donald J. Trump's election has raised a question that few Americans ever imagined asking: Is our democracy in danger?…

Healthcare unions drive spending for Democrats » The Salem News Healthcare unions spent hundreds of thousands of dollars last year to help the state's incumbent Democrats fend off challengers in the Nov. 8 elections.…

No retreat on funding for opioid epidemic » Boston Globe In 2015, there were 1,574 confirmed accidental opioid deaths, a 20 percent increase over the previous year's 1,383. As of September, the state's opioid epidemic claimed another 1,005 people, with an a…

Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker will not support broad new taxes in 2018 budget » Boston Globe Gov. Charlie Baker said Thursday that he will not support an across-the-board tax increase in the fiscal 2018 budget -- although he did not rule out signing a budget that includes closing tax loophole…

"What that says to me is there's underlying softness to what people are making and earning, and I think it's really inappropriate for state government, given that set of circumstances, to be talking about taking more money from the people," Baker said. "We ought to focus on doing the hard work we need to do to live within our means in the same way they are."

Governor Charlie Baker

Expressing his support for no new broad taxes in the 2018 budget.

News By Category
Business

Confidence in Trump drives Dow up sharply » Boston Globe The stock market has soared to record highs since Election Day, and many Americans are feeling more than a little conflicted about it.…

Facebook details effort to stem tide of fake news » Boston Globe For weeks, Facebook has been questioned about its role in spreading fake news. Now the company has mounted its most concerted effort to combat the problem.…

With Marijuana Legal In Mass., Hydroponic Equipment Stores Expecting A Boom » WBUR Thursday is a historic day in Massachusetts. For the first time, people can grow their own marijuana, roll a joint, and smoke it legally. There are restrictions, though: You can't do it in public, you…

The smoke clears on 2016: Recreational marijuana legalized, and GE plants itself here » Boston Business Journal A look at the most important Boston business stories of 2016, as published in the latest Weekly Edition.…

Outside the Box: Mike Hennessy's recruitment company helps employers ID 'pre-applicants' » Boston Business Journal Candidates may not even know they are applicants yet. They are “pre-applicants,” identified by their digital and social media footprint and reached through LinkedIn or other sites, until t…

At Massachusetts Smoke Shops, Customers Can Now Say 'Bong' » CBS Local You can possess it, you can use it, and you can even home grow it–but you still can't legally buy marijuana in Massachusetts just yet without a doctor's prescription.…

Massachusetts unemployment rate falls below 3 percent » Boston Business Journal The Bay State's unemployment rate dropped to 2.9 percent in November, marking the first time it has dipped below 3 percent since the beginning of the century. …

Mass. unemployment rate plummets below 3 percent » Lowell Sun Unemployment in the Bay State plummeted in November to its lowest level in nearly 16 years, as strong demand persists for skilled workers in fields ranging from finance to construction. The state Exe…

Suffolk Construction wins $200M GE headquarters project » Boston Business Journal

Civil Rights

Massachusetts pastors cheer state's decision to drop churches from transgender public accommodation list » New Boston Post Pastors from four Massachusetts churches are hailing a recent settlement in a federal case pitting their right to religious freedom against the state's interpretation of the new transgender public acc…

Crimes

'Sex sells anywhere' says human trafficking expert after Massachusetts businesses shutdown » Boston Globe Following the takedown of several human trafficking rings operating across Massachusetts and resulting shock of residents in several communities, Donna Sabella is unsurprised. …

Education

Decent PISA Numbers, But Can Mass. Students Really Do The Math? » WBUR Mitchell Chester, the state's commissioner of elementary and secondary education, was pretty upbeat when we spoke earlier this week. “If we were a nation, we'd be in a league with the highest-p…

Babson bars lawyers from Trump duo's hearing » Boston Herald Lawyers for two pro-Trump Babson College students have been barred from a closed-door disciplinary hearing today when the school's Honor Board weighs harassment and disorderly conduct charges against …

High demand, turnover, deficits seen at Mass. special education schools » State House News Service As demand climbs for the intensive services provided by private special education schools, 38 percent of the teachers at such institutions quit their jobs each year.…

Wakefield students learn 'Common Cents' at Statehouse » Wicked Local Wakefield The Massachusetts Bankers Association and five co-sponsors, including The Savings Bank, recently hosted "Common Cents," a financial education competition featuring high school students from around the…

Environment

Environmentalists troubled by Trump policies » Wicked Local Hanover Alarmed by President-elect Donald Trump's emerging environmental policies, environmentalists in Massachusetts say it will be more important than ever for states to lead on issues.…

Federal

As Vote Looms, Controversy Over The Electoral College » WBUR Calls grow to abolish the Electoral College and for electors to vote their conscience. We'll take on the Electoral College question.…

Health Care

Mass. joins lawsuit alleging widespread price-fixing in generic drug industry » Boston Business Journal A new federal lawsuit filed by Massachusetts and 19 other states accuses six generic drugmakers of conspiring to raise the price of a diabetes treatment and a commonly used antibiotic.…

20 States sue generic drug firms over prices » Boston Globe The attorneys general in 20 states on Thursday accused six generic pharmaceutical companies, including industry giants Teva and Mylan, of a scheme to artificially inflate the prices of an antibiotic a…

Mass. joins 19 states in suing generic drug makers » Boston Herald Massachusetts and 19 other states filed a federal lawsuit yesterday against six pharmaceutical companies, claiming they illegally conspired to artificially inflate prices and reduce competition for tw…

Human Services

Baker administration accused of denying shelter to homeless mothers » Boston Globe Governor Charlie Baker's longstanding push to end the practice of putting homeless families in motels at state expense has resulted in Massachusetts illegally denying shelter to the Commonwealth's mos…

Lawsuit claims Gov. Baker's administration would rather let homeless kids sleep in ER than provide motels » Mass Live

Baker Administration Accused of Denying Motel Rooms to Homeless Mothers » Boston Magazine

Judiciary

Ex-state official was 'freaking out' over failure to disclose Amherst drug lab scandal information » Boston Globe John Verner, until this year head of the Massachusetts Attorney General's Office criminal bureau, had strong words to describe his feelings about finding out that documents connected to Sonja Farak's …

Bishops press Beacon Hill for criminal justice reform » Commonwealth Magazine THE STATE'S FOUR Catholic bishops are adding their voices to those calling for the Legislature to take up a comprehensive criminal justice reform bill when lawmakers reconvene for a new session next m…

Green gifts mark pot legalization outside Statehouse » Berkshire Eagle A decade ago a Massachusetts State Police cruiser, lights on, pulling up onto the sidewalk at a cannabis celebration might have been cause for alarm among attendees. On Thursday, the first day of mar…

Labor

Mass. Unemployment Rate Falls To 2.9 Percent » WBUR The Massachusetts unemployment rate is now at 2.9 percent — 0.4 percentage points lower than it was the month prior, and a full 2 percentage points lower than it was a year ago.…

Teamsters official to serve 6 months' home confinement in 'Top Chef' case » Boston Globe Former Teamster official Mark Harrington assured a federal judge Thursday that he is already facing a harsh punishment for his role in attempting to extort jobs in 2014 from a production crew filming …

Probation, 6 months at home for Teamster » Boston Herald A former Teamsters executive's concession that a lapse in judgment cost him the calling he loved spared him prison, but it doesn't mean he'll testify against four Local 25 brothers still facing charge…

City will soon be able to revoke permits at unsafe work sites » Boston Globe City officials will soon have the authority to deny, revoke, or suspend a permit for any contractor with a poor record of ensuring their workers' safety.…

Legislative

Springfield's Ben Swan, Amherst's Ellen Story among Massachusetts state reps giving farewell speeches » Boston Globe Rep. Ellen Story talked about defeating five men in her first-ever political campaign en route to a 26-year career in the House.…

Farewells in House a trip down memory lane » State House News Service Rep. Ellen Story talked about defeating five men in her first-ever political campaign en route to a 26-year career in the House. Rep. Tom Sannicandro recounted a meal of chicken foot soup in the House…

Local Government

Tito Jackson, man of mayoral action? » Commonwealth Magazine It's just about the worst kept secret in town: Boston City Councilor Tito Jackson seems very likely to challenge Mayor Marty Walsh's reelection bid next year. Jackson has said publicly only that he i…

Baker's Seaport Economic Council Meets In Beverly » Framingham Patch The Council approved funding of $1 million for the Fall River City Pier, a project that will construct new sheet piling and other pier and seawall infrastructure, and extend the public infrastructure …

Rebecca Walker Grossman to run for Ward 7 councilor at-large in Newton » Wicked Local Newton A former prosecutor and investment banker with law and business degrees is the first newcomer to enter the open race for Ward 7 councilor at-large.…

Opinion

Republican State Committeewoman: Legislators reallocate tax dollars to fund illegal aliens » Wicked Local Winchester As Republican State Committeewoman for the 5th Middlesex District (Stoneham, Winchester, Reading, Wakefield, Malden and Melrose), I recently wrote to all of the communities within our district to comm…

In the Arena: Kulik pulls no punches on medical marijuana handling » The Recorder I'm sure many of us never thought we'd see it, but recreational marijuana is now legal in Massachusetts.…

Trump's Cabinet: A who's who of homophobia » Boston Globe During his election campaign, Donald Trump claimed he was “better for the gay community” than Hillary Clinton. He even stated in his acceptance speech at the Republican National Convention…

ViewPoint: Civics education needs a revival like STEM » Boston Business Journal Many of us in Greater Boston's tech community feel the same way. Our society must have a working knowledge of who we are as a nation, how government works, and our rights and obligations as individual…

The unimaginable cruelty of 20-week abortion bans » Boston Globe “The test results came back negative.” These remain six of the greatest words I've ever heard — and they came after two of the most agonizing weeks of my life.…

Editorial: Don't shortchange public universities: Our workforce depends on them » Boston Business Journal That's a big reason that tuition and fees at most public colleges across the country have risen so sharply since the recession in 2008. In Massachusetts, that trend has been going in the wrong directi…

Carr: No ring of truth with this hotline » Boston Herald What this country needs is a fake hate-crime hotline.…

Editorial: Legislators should tweak marijuana law » Gazette Net Massachusetts on Thursday begins a new era of legalized marijuana. But as the public will find out, the door opened by voter approval of Question 4 on Nov. 8 has not yet swung wide open, nor should it…

Other

Revenue at Plainridge Park casino steady in November » Boston Globe Gambling revenue at Plainridge Park Casino held steady in November from the previous month, while showing a slight improvement over November 2015.…

Analyst: No major changes in crime around Plainville slot parlor » State House News Service After a full year in operation, Plainridge Park Casino and the surrounding area did not experience significant changes in crime or call-for-service levels, though the slots parlor may contribute to an…

Electoral College voters to cast ballots Monday at State House » Boston Globe A group of 11 Massachusetts residents will meet Monday at the State House with Secretary of State William F. Galvin, and their actions will mark the official end of the 2016 presidential election in M…

Politics

Mannal among legislators to say goodbye » Cape Cod Times Mannal among legislators to say goodbye…

Beacon Hill proposal targets tax returns of presidential candidates » Wicked Local Lexington State Sen. Mike Barrett, D-Lexington, urges the Massachusetts Legislature to tell future presidential candidates that they cannot appear on a primary or general election ballot in the state until they…

Seth Moulton: Bay State's plan on legal pot lacking » Boston Herald Bay State U.S. Rep. Seth Moulton joined Boston Herald Radio yesterday to discuss the legalization of recreational marijuana in Massachusetts and the cabinet appointments President-elect Donald Trump h…

North Carolina G.O.P. Moves to Curb Power of New Democratic Governor » New York Times RALEIGH, N.C. — Republicans in the North Carolina legislature on Wednesday took the highly unusual step of moving to strip power from the incoming Democratic governor after a bitter election th…

Public Barred from Viewing N.C. Legislative Coup; Reporter Apparently Arrested » Slate The North Carolina General Assembly is currently debating a series of Republican-sponsored laws designed to strip power from the newly progressive governor and state Supreme Court.…

North Carolina legislature attempting virtual coup of new Democratic governor » Think Progress The Republican-controlled North Carolina legislature is not happy that voters last month chose a Democratic governor and a liberal majority on the North Carolina Supreme Court. And today, they could t…

For Longtime Advocate Of Legal Marijuana In Massachusetts The Time Has Finally Arrived » WAMC Massachusetts on Thursday began a new era of legalized marijuana. Dick Evans, a Northampton attorney, tried for 40 years to lift the prohibition on marijuana possession and sales in the stat…

Public Health

Mayor Walsh skeptical of raising legal age for marijuana use » State House News Service On the day marijuana legalization took effect, one of the chief opponents of the new law expressed skepticism about raising the legal age of consumption and said he would not pursue a moratorium in Bo…

Public Health Commissioner concerned about youth as legal pot era dawns » Berkshire Eagle After adult marijuana use becomes legal in Massachusetts Thursday, state health officials plan to keep up efforts to educate youth about the drug and prevent young people from using it. "We continue …

Public Safety

Legal-Marijuana Activists Celebrate New Massachusetts Law » ABC News Legal-marijuana activists were in a celebratory mood Thursday as a new voter-approved law took effect in Massachusetts, allowing people 21 and over to possess, grow and use limited amounts of recreati…

The Detective And The Dealer: An Evening With Heroin In Framingham » WBUR One detective hides behind the house. Another is in an unmarked car out front. A third and fourth are stationed along a narrow residential street as a tall man with shoulder-length dark hair lopes tow…

Massachusetts delegation strengthens ties in cyber security, digital health » The Jerusalem Post “I think it was a pretty successful trip,” Baker told The Jerusalem Post. “We had a pretty good group coming to begin with. The focus of the mission was on cyber security and digital…

Police say law enforcement details of new marijuana law are confusing » WWLP 22 The new marijuana law went into effect Thursday, but some police departments admit the law enforcement aspect of the details are confusing.…

Commissioner Evans: Body Cams On Hold, Revoking 'Taxi King' Medallions, Easing Up On Marijuana Arrests » WGBH News Police Commissioner Bill Evans said he will revoke the transfer of 362 taxi medallions that millionaire taxicab king Edward Tutunjian quietly transferred to his wife prior to a plea agreement with the…

State Government

Mass. Historical Commission seeks nominations for annual preservation awards for outstanding projects, individuals » Boston Globe The Massachusetts Historical Commission is accepting nominations for the 39th annual Preservation Awards Program that recognizes individuals and projects that have displayed an outstanding commitment …

Baker talks trip, taxes, trade upon return from Israel » Worcester Telegram Gov. Charlie Baker returned to Massachusetts on Thursday on a red-eye flight from Israel completing his first international trade mission where he sought to strengthen economic ties in the digital hea…

Mass. Republican Party Chair Reflects On Election, Plans For Trump Presidency » WBUR We continue our conversations on the two major political parties in Massachusetts by sitting down with the chair of the state Republican party, Quincy Quincy City Council President …

Taxation

Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker will not support broad new taxes in 2018 budget » Boston Globe Gov. Charlie Baker said Thursday that he will not support an across-the-board tax increase in the fiscal 2018 budget -- although he did not rule out signing a budget that includes closing tax loophole…

Transportation

Route 107 'zig-zag' remains in state's plan » The Salem News The state has wrapped up its exhaustive study of traffic along Highland Avenue (Route 107), and while officials hail the completion of the study, an unpopular recommendation for a "zig-zag" traffic pa…

Timilty opposes pilot rail program; MBTA, state hearing postponed » Foxboro Reporter Timilty, D-Walpole, said he believes the MBTA fiscal management control board and Department of Transportation directors dropped a planned presentation on the subject a week before their joint meeting…

MBTA, Amtrak say they expect to end Northeast Corridor fight » Boston Globe The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority and Amtrak say they're on track to end a heated legal dispute that, at its peak, saw Amtrak threaten to cut Massachusetts out of its highly trafficked No…

5 takeaways from Medford's Green Line Extension meeting » Wicked Local Medford The Green Line Extension's Interim Program Management Team hosted a public meeting Wednesday night at Medford City Hall, where new project manager John Dalton provided updates about the 4.7-mile rail …

MBTA urged to end Social Security benefits for employees » Boston Business Journal The MBTA needs to end Social Security benefits for its workers, the Pioneer Institute recommended in a report Thursday, in order to address an out-of-control pension problem at the agency.…

Utilities

Eversource finds a loophole » Commonwealth Magazine THE ANNOUNCEMENT OF AN EVERSOURCE/DONG Energy joint venture for offshore wind development should send shivers up the spine of anyone who recalls the strategy behind restructuring the …

Massachusetts Surpasses 100,000 Clean Energy Jobs » Solar Industry The clean energy jobs market in Massachusetts has now topped 100,000 workers, according to a new report from the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center (MassCEC), which says the state has added 6,317 jobs …

NRC: No meeting until inspection is over » Cape Cod Times The agency that oversees operation of the nation's fleet of nuclear reactors has refused to discuss with Plymouth officials, or the public, a federal inspector's recent characterization of the Pilgrim…

Massachusetts added thousands of clean energy jobs in 2016 » Metro Massachusetts is investing heavily in clean energy initiatives. …

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The Week In Review

Most read bills of the week:

House Actions This Week: 104

Senate Actions This Week: 51

Press Releases

Partners HealthCare Launches New Center of Excellence » Partners Healthcare

How Can a 'Biological Opinion' Help North Atlantic Right Whales? » Conservation Law Foundation

Cleantech Open Northeast Accelerator Program Awards 2018’s Top Cleantech and Energy Startups » Northeast Clean Energy Council

U.S. SETS NEW RECORD FOR OIL PRODUCTION IN SEPTEMBER MEETING VIRTUALLY ALL GLOBAL DEMAND GROWTH » Mass. Petroleum Council

MassDOT Commits Funds to Help Amtrak Improve Longmeadow Railroad Crossing » MassDOT

How Small Businesses Can Sell Products on Amazon » National Federation of Independent Business

More than Two Dozen NFIB Members Are Running for Office Across the Country » National Federation of Independent Business

Lt. Governor Polito Hosts Roundtable on Dangerousness » Office of Governor Charlie Baker

Baker-Polito Administration Further Expands Access to Opioid Reversal Medication » Office of Governor Charlie Baker

Warren, Markey Query Columbia Gas On Uninhabitable Homes Following Merrimack Valley Disaster » Office of Senator Ed Markey

Senator Markey Commends MassDOT Commitment to Help Amtrak Improve Longmeadow Railroad Crossing » Office of Senator Ed Markey

Senator Markey Urges FDA to Deny Approval of Powerful Opioid Dsuvia, Cites Warning of Committee Chair » Office of Senator Ed Markey

Senators Press for Full Disclosure of Trump Family Business Ties to Saudi Arabia » Office of Senator Ed Markey

Bipartisan Legislation Introduced Suspending Military Aid & Sales to Saudi Government following Khashoggi Disappearance » Congressman Jim McGovern

McGovern Statement on Apparent Murder of Jamal Khashoggi » Congressman Jim McGovern

Educators' Voices Are Influential on Ballot Questions » Massachusetts Teachers Association

CLIMATE CHANGE WILL COST LOCAL BREWERIES, WINERIES » Climate Action Business Association


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