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Today on Beacon Hill

9:00am MAPA Lobby Day, Grand Staircase

9:00am Community Health Center Day at the State House, Great Hall

12:00pm Cambodian New Year Celebration, Nurses Hall

3:00pm Joint Committee on Transportation, Public Hearing

Birthdays: Rep. Joan Meschino

Must-Reads

UMass Boston leader offers emotional defense of his tenure » Boston Globe Outgoing UMass Boston Chancellor J. Keith Motley delivered an emotional defense of his decade-long tenure Tuesday evening, telling the university system board of trustees that he is proud of everythin…

UMass didn't heed warnings on construction costs » Boston Globe THE CANCELLATION OF courses students need in order to graduate and the resignation of chancellor Keith Motley are the latest evidence of deepening fiscal woes at UMass Boston. As is so often the case,…

Admin monitoring budget after revenues slide further off track » State House News Service Sluggish tax revenue growth continues to have budget officials on high alert, but the Baker administration appears to be holding its wait-and-see posture as it hopes for April, with its income tax dea…

Inside Hillary Clinton's play to come out of the woods » Vanity Fair Don't say comeback, don't say repositioning, but there is an active debate inside Clintonworld about bringing Hillary back into the public sphere. “In many respects, maybe she's running for hist…

Healthcare's new rural frontier » Politico Just before dusk on an evening in early March, Mimi Rosenkrance set to work on her spacious cattle ranch to vaccinate a calf. But the mother cow quickly decided that just wasn't going to happen. She c…

Nelson, near Trump's Palm Beach resort, calls for end to attacks on climate science » Miami Herald Three years after he held a field hearing in Miami Beach to draw attention to a region at ground zero for climate change, U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson convened a second hearing in West Palm Beach on Monday w…

Mass. House Health-Care Move Pits Baker Against Business » WGBH Expect a fight on Beacon Hill this year when business groups and employer lobbies attempt to beat back Gov. Charlie Baker's plans to rescue the state budget from runaway Medicaid spending. …

State employee health insurer GIC to partner with for-profit Iora Health » Boston Business Journal The Group Insurance Commission, the quasi-state agency the oversees health insurance for state and some government employees, will partner with Iora Health starting this summer to provide specialized …

“I sincerely request that you consider our shared history and be cognizant of the genocidal accuracy of the symbolism that the seal in part portrays,”

John Peters - Executive Director, Commission on Indian Affairs

Speaking about the commission being created to change the Massachusetts state flag.

News By Category
Beltway Politics

The White House hosted a Passover Seder, but without President Trump » The Washington Post The modern era of a presidential Seder might have ended Monday, though the tradition of Passover in the White House hasn't been extinguished altogether.…

GOP Holds Kansas House Seat As Democrat's Surprise Upset Bid Falls Short » WBUR In the first special congressional election since President Donald Trump took office, a Republican candidate won a narrower-than-expected victory in a district President Donald Trump easily carried le…

Trump Hosts NATO Leader Amid Tension With Russia » WBUR President Trump meets at the White House Wednesday with the secretary general of NATO, Jens Stoltenberg. Afterward, the two men will take questions from reporters, which are likely to center on the a…

Tillerson Seeks 'Open, Candid, Frank Exchange' With Lavrov In Moscow » WBUR Syria and North Korea are two main subjects of talks between Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in Moscow Wednesday, as the diplomats try to repair a relation…

White House Spokesman Stumbles Over Assad-Hitler Comparison » WBUR White House spokesman Sean Spicer warned Russia today that its alliance with Syria is putting it "on the wrong side of history, in a really bad way, really quickly." The press secretary found himself…

Not So Strong After All: Climate Change Is Trump's National Security Weakness » WBUR For George W. Bush, 2017 has been a great year. The 43rd president left office with many historians declaring him the worst chief executive ever, largely for starting a misguided war that did little f…

Russia accuses US of unlawful Syria raid as Tillerson visits » Sentinel & Enterprise Russia's top diplomat accused the United States on Wednesday of carrying out an unlawful attack against Syrian President Bashar Assad's forces as he opened a fraught meeting with visiting U.S. Secreta…

Elizabeth Warren rakes in $5.2 million in first 3 months of 2017 » MassLive U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren is revving up her already formidable fundraising juggernaut, raking in more than $5.2 million in the first quarter of the year to bring her campaign account to more than $9.…

Mitt Romney's 'binders full of women' are real, contain close to 200 names » MassLive During the second U.S. presidential debate of 2012, then presidential candidate Mitt Romney told voters that he had "binders full of women." When asked of pay equality, Romney said that, as governor…

Warren nearly doubles campaign account in first three months of 2017 » Politico Sen. Elizabeth Warren has nearly doubled her campaign account in the first quarter of 2017, according to new campaign finance data.…

Business

Lawmakers push back on internet privacy » Gloucester Times Lawmakers are seeking to fill gaps in consumer protection laws following the repeal of federal internet privacy rules approved in the final days of the Obama administration.…

Southie developers have upper hand » Boston Herald As South Boston residents railed for a second night against plans to tear down a single-family home for a five-unit condo building, they learned they have little leverage — current zoning laws …

Inside CommonWealth Kitchen, food business incubator, it takes a self-taught baker just several months to launch bakery » The Republican At home, she would make small tray of cupcakes. Now inside a food business incubator in Boston's Dorchester neighborhood, Teresa Maynard can make 240 an hour.…

Data shows Gateway Cities, rural areas, trapped in "grocery gap" » Sentinel & Enterprise

Education

Incoming UMass Boston chief says budget process 'broken' » Commonwealth Magazine BARRY MILLS, who is slated to take the reins as interim chancellor at the University of Massachusetts Boston, painted a dire picture of finances and operations at the campus, saying the budget process…

UMass Boston Administrators Cut Projected Budget Deficit » WBUR The troubled finances of UMass Boston dominated trustee meetings Tuesday. Trustees heard from Deputy Chancellor Barry Mills that he predicts the campus' budget deficit will be less than half what was…

Lawmakers urge larger commitment of state aid for education » Berkshire Eagle Educators, parents, and lawmakers on Tuesday urged support for a bill that would update the state's school funding formula to send more money to districts, highlighting the bill's backing from a varie…

Cuts at UMass Boston reduce deficit by more than two-thirds » State House News Service The University of Massachusetts Boston campus is projected to end this fiscal year with a deficit of between $6 million and $7 million after implementing more than $20 million in budget fixes, UMass o…

Mills poised to reengineer UMass Boston, Motley says » State House News Service UMass Boston Chancellor Keith Motley on Tuesday offered his support for the man set to replace him when he steps down from his post this summer.…

North Attleboro schools to go without supplies for awhile to deal with budget shortfall » The Sun Chronicle The town's public schools will have to go without supplies for at least a month and a half next fall.…

Environment

Cape, South Shore Legislators Express Support for Federal Nuclear Waste Site » Cape Cod Online

Federal

Warren to host town hall in Salem Thursday » The Salem News Sen. Elizabeth Warren will host a town hall in the city Thursday evening. The forum will take place at Salem High School, 77 Willson St. Doors open at 5:30 p.m.; the town hall is expected to wrap up b…

Gaming

Slots in cards for Vineyard » Boston Herald The Wampanoags of Martha's Vineyard are “simply thrilled” with an appeals court decision backing the tribe's push to convert an unused community center into a slots parlor, their tribal ch…

A later last call for casinos? » Commonwealth Magazine THE MASSACHUSETTS GAMING COMMISSION could allow casinos to sell liquor to gamblers an extra two hours – until 4 a.m. – under an outside section of the House Ways and Means budget …

Appeals Court Reverses Ruling Blocking Tribe's Martha's Vineyard Casino Bid » WBUR A native American tribe's plans for a gambling hall on Martha's Vineyard gained a second life Tuesday after a federal appeals court reversed a lower court decision blocking the long-sought project.…

Tribe, town react to casino court ruling » Martha's Vineyard Times

Health Care

Could a pill reverse hearing loss? This Woburn startup thinks so » Boston Globe David Lucchino admits he attended too many U2 concerts years ago.…

UMass proposing $20M Worcester psych hospital » Worcester Business Journal UMass Memorial Health Care is proposing a new 120-bed psychiatric hospital in Worcester to cost $18 million to $20 million and open in early 2019.…

Nine Massachusetts hospitals receive 'C' grades for safety » Boston Business Journal

Keating defends Mass. health care as ACA debate simmers » State House News Service

Human Services

Advocates want more funds for after-school programs » WWLP 22 Advocates are asking the state to give more money to programs that support at-risk youth in the community.…

Immigration

A Day Without Immigrants protest planned for Brockton » The Enterprise What would the city of Brockton be like without immigrants? That's the question a local interfaith coalition is asking with a rally planned for May Day at a Brockton park, in light of the contentious …

Trump seeks to dismiss city's lawsuit blocking his immigration orders » Eagle Tribune U.S. Justice Department lawyers are asking a federal judge to throw out a lawsuit brought by the cities of Lawrence and Chelsea that would block President Trump from cutting off federal funding to com…

Monaco reserves judgment on Mass. Safe Communities Act » The Tufts Daily The Tufts Community Union (TCU) Senate passed “A Resolution In Support of the Massachusetts Safe Communities Act” on February 20.…

MIRA Coalition draws hundreds to rally for safe communities » Bay State Banner

Judiciary

More questions emerge on probate court personnel » Boston Globe Help for the long-troubled Suffolk Probate office came from Worcester County, where a probate court employee named Leslie Girardi had worked for a decade.…

Mass. Bill Seeks To Lessen Jail Time Due To Fines » New England Public Radio New legislation filed Tuesday by Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker would allow those fined by a court a chance to work off the debt through community service, instead being thrown in jail.…

Baker bill triples pay rate to help defendants work off debt » South Coast Today Defendants who can't afford to pay court fees or fines would be able to perform community service to cover their debt instead of serving jail time, under a bill Gov. Charlie Baker was filing Tuesday.…

Master plan orders up changes for Bay State courts » Boston Herald Old courthouses — including ones in Southie and Charlestown — could be shuttered in favor of new, state-of the art facilities under a draft master capital plan released yesterday.…

Massachusetts unveils preliminary plans to repair, replace declining court facilities, but where is Springfield? » The Republican

Judicial nominee withdraws hours before confirmation hearing » Boston Globe

Superior Court, BMC nominees cleared for judgeships » State House News Service

Sheriff favors reform of “fine time” for defendants » WWLP 22

Labor

House budget leaves out cap on retiree sick-time awards » Boston Business Journal In his budget plan earlier this year, Gov. Charlie Baker had included limits on how much public employees can cash out upon retirement.…

Legislative

Immigration, fair wages, climate change dominate town hall » The Salem News About 100 people from Norfolk to Lawrence gathered at Peabody's new middle school Tuesday night to urge state senators to support a broad range of bills on public transportation, immigration, fair wag…

Local Government

Maynard seeks ideas for its 150th anniversary » Boston Globe In anticipation of the 150th anniversary of its founding, Maynard is reaching out to residents with plans for the 2020-2021 celebration.…

Georgetown town counsel: Town should act soon on cannabis policy » Wicked Local Georgetown The clock is ticking for Georgetown to decide what to do about recreational cannabis, according to town attorney Jonathan Eichman.…

Proposed freeze on marijuana shops will be on Auburn ballot » Worcester Telegram & Gazette After town meeting members weigh in on a proposed moratorium on recreational marijuana stores, voters will get a chance to decide whether they want such establishments in town at all.…

Opinion

From desolate streets to Boston's hottest destination » Boston Globe The history of this Colonial-era city is long and rich and deep, and so it was just a few municipal eye blinks ago when its critical core had sleazy strip clubs on its edges, grime on its streets, and…

Bill O'Reilly will remain 'the king of cable news' » Boston Globe BILL O'REILLY ISN'T going anywhere. He's not some self-righteous hypocritical bully governing a Bible Belt state while wading in a sex scandal.…

What's the future look like for the Seaport's popular District Hall? » Boston Globe If there is one thing that everybody loves about the Seaport, it is District Hall.…

Lawmakers must remove autonomous vehicle roadblocks » Commonwealth Magazine WHAT IF YOU COULD REMOVE error as a cause of motor vehicle crashes? The reality is we are getting closer to that point every day. Cars are getting smarter, and smarter means safer.…

Carr: City judicial positions the new couples' retreat » Boston Herald Massachusetts is about to get a new district court judge, one Richard J. Sinnott III. After winning confirmation this afternoon by the Governor's Council, Sinnott will henceforward sit on the Boston M…

Editorial: T pension progress » Boston Herald In his budget plan released in February, Gov. Charlie Baker proposed transferring management of the subpar MBTA retirement fund to the more professional, more successful state pension system. It is en…

Politics

WBUR Poll: In Central Mass. Towns, Trump Voters Are Sticking By Him » WBUR Despite setbacks on his effort to repeal and replace Obamacare and court challenges to his executive orders on immigration, President Trump remains very popular among his supporters in Massachusetts. …

Baker's 75 percent approval rating puts him back on top » Berkshire Eagle Gov. Charlie Baker is back on top, leapfrogging over his counterparts in North Dakota and Maryland to again claim the title "Most Popular Governor in America," according to a national poll released Tu…

Tito Jackson: Walsh Ignores The Middle Class, Focuses On "Distractions" » WGBH Boston City Councilor Tito Jackson criticized Mayor Marty Walsh's administration for focusing too heavily on “distractions” instead of problems affecting the city's working and middle-clas…

Public Safety

Death benefit sought for widow of Fall River firefighter » State House News Service The widow of a Fall River firefighter who died of brain cancer two years ago would receive an accidental death benefit under legislation backed by her late husband's former colleagues and local electe…

State Finance

Baker plays budget man in the middle » Commonwealth Magazine It's become a well-known part of the current dynamic on Beacon Hill: Though Democrats enjoy super-majorities in both legislative branches, the House leans right and often forms a tag-team with Republi…

Budget dynamics gain clarity with release of House's $40 billion plan » Berkshire Eagle Democratic leaders of the Massachusetts House put forward a $40.3 billion spending plan for fiscal 2018 that Ways and Means Chairman Brian Dempsey said focused "first and foremost on the fundamentals"…

Schools would see increased funds under House budget » The Metro West Daily News Addressing healthcare, local aid and the state's long-term financial health are among the priorities House Ways and Means Chairman Brian Dempsey listed in unveiling his committee's $40.3 billion Massa…

Frayed Community Preservation Partnership needs funding boost » South Coast Today As the state's contribution rate continues to decline to record low levels, supporters of the Community Preservation Act touted legislation they say is necessary to preserve the open space protection …

State Government

Changing views may lead to review of state seal » South Coast Today It is a symbol literally emblazoned throughout edifices and articles of state government, and for a contingent of residents the seal of the Commonwealth represents violence perpetrated by European set…

Push Under Way On Beacon Hill To Dump State Flag; Guess Why? » State House News Service A push is under way on Beacon Hill to change the state flag because of its depiction of a Native American man tilting his arrow towards the ground as an apparent sign of pacifism and submission, while…

Transportation

MBTA repair project will hurt tourism, residents » Salem News The MBTA's planned shutdown of the Newburyport/Rockport line on weekends late this summer for repair work has spurred Salem's lawmakers to push for alternative transportation for commuters and tourist…

Local-option transportation tax pitched on Beacon Hill » The Hull Times Pointing to a need for greater investment in transportation infrastructure, state lawmakers and local officials on Monday renewed an effort to allow cities and towns to ask voters to authorize a loca…

Somerville GLX borrow bill gets quick committee OK » State House News Service Faced with a March 1, 2018 deadline to pony up the first installment of $50 million towards the Green Line Extension project, the city of Somerville on Tuesday got its first legislative approval on a …

Green Line Extension Borrow Bill Gets Committee Approval » Peabody Patch The City of Somerville received approval by the Committee on Municipalities and Regional Government Tuesday on a bill that would facilitate its payments toward the Green Line Extension Project, accord…

Want to buy a train station? South Station could be yours for $100M » Boston Business Journal

Social Media Spotlight

@sethmoulton

@senator_jen_flanagan


Harvard Institute of Politics

The Road to Citizenship


Stan Rosenberg

@SenStan

Charlie Baker

@CharlieBakerMA

Deborah Goldberg

@MassTreasury

Maura Healey

@MassAGO


Yesterday's Late-Breaking News

Appeals court decision boosts Wampanoag's plan for casino on Martha's Vineyard » Boston Herald

T considering ways to close $50M deficit » Worcester Business Journal

Jackson says UMass prez should reject Motley's resignation » Boston Herald

Maine's Susan Collins Weighing 2018 Gubernatorial Bid » Roll Call

Mass. AG Calls For DPU To Reject Eversource Request » WAMC

Biz leaders rip state health care tax » Boston Herald

'Fine time' reduction is a fine idea (Editorial) » The Republican

Mayor seeks transfers to fund water-sewer improvements » Newburyport News

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Recipe of the Week

SPANAKOPITA

Chef Brendan Pelley

Makes 8 Servings

Ingredients

  • 1 leek
  • 1 bunch scallions, sliced
  • 1/4 pound unsalted butter
  • 1-1 1/2 pounds curly spinach, chopped
  • 1 pound domestic feta cheese, in brine
  • 6 eggs
  • 1/2 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 package Kontos #4 phyllo dough
  • olive oil
  • kosher salt

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 375ºF (with high fan).
  2. Cut off the tops and bottoms of the leek, then slice into 1/4-inch rings and rinse well.
  3. Coat a heavy bottomed pot or pan with olive oil over medium heat. Add in the leeks and scallions with a slab of butter. Sweat on medium heat, stirring with a wooden spoon.
  4. Meanwhile, add the rest of the butter to a small sauce pot and melt on low heat.
  5. While the leeks are cooking, crumble the feta cheese into a large steel bowl. Remove any large stems from the spinach and add in the leaves. Crack in the eggs and the baking powder and mix together.
  6. Remove the melted butter from the stove and have it handy to brush the phyllo.
  7. Add the softened leeks and scallions to the filling mix and stir to combine.
  8. Brush the bottom of a Pyrex pan with butter. Add six layers of phyllo, brushing each with melted butter.
  9. Add a layer of the pie filling, then two more layers of phyllo, brushing with butter. Repeat, then add the remainder of the filling and top with six layers of phyllo, brushing each with butter.
  10. Bake for 25 minutes or until the internal temp reads 185ºF.
  11. Cool, cut and serve.


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