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Today on Beacon Hill

11:00am Mass. Rehabilitation Commission - JDT Graduation , Great Hall

11:00am House Session, Informal Session

11:00am Senate Session, Informal Session

1:00pm Joint Committee on Election Laws, Public Hearing

Must-Reads

Partners to acquire RI's Care New England » Boston Globe Partners HealthCare has agreed to acquire one of Rhode Island's largest hospital operators, Care New England Health System of Providence.…

Task force to review how hospitals put $$ to use in community » State House News Service A new health care task force convened by Attorney General Maura Healey is seeking to update the state's guidelines for community benefits provided by nonprofit hospitals, with several members calling …

Suzanne Bump rips 'no oversight' for pot » Boston Herald State Auditor Suzanne Bump and marijuana legalization advocates are throwing water on a proposal to create an independent commission to regulate the newly legalized drug in the mold of the state Gamin…

Baker deserves a 'C' for handling, environmental groups say » Boston Globe For the second year in a row, environmental groups have issued a “mediocre grade” for the Baker administration's efforts to address issues such as climate change and land conservation. …

House budget more generous to local schools, but old issues persist » Worcester Telegram Unveiled last week, the House Ways and Means budget promises an additional $15 million in Chapter 70 funding to public schools across the state compared to Gov. Charlie Baker's proposal. …

Taxing matters await as House preps for budget debate » State House News Service The annual state budget, on track to weigh in north of $40 billion, will be built on the expectation of roughly $27 billion in tax revenue - but state reps on both sides of the aisle are hoping to tin…

Democrats turn to Sanders and his star power to rebuild the party » The Washington Post Earlier this week, before heading downstairs to speak to nearly 3,000 Ken­tuckians, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) reminisced about his 2016 presidential campaign. After he had gained steam, and his r…

Gisele tweets anti-Trump march as Brady skips White House visit » The Hill Supermodel and philanthropist Gisele Bündchen tweeted a link to an April protest against President Trump and his climate policies at the same time Wednesday that her husband, NFL quarterback Tom Br…

Kraft Group donated $1M to Trump inauguration; law, energy also generous » Boston Business Journal The Kraft Group, the conglomerate owned by New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft, contributed $1 million toward President Donald Trump's presidential inauguration, according to a federal election fi…

Almost 40 candidates sign up to seek city office in Boston » Boston Globe Back in the distant past of 2015, the number of potential candidates was so scant, the former head of the city's Election Department complained of “no action” that year. …

“At a time when Massachusetts should be leading, we are falling behind,” “Inadequate funding and staffing continue to plague the agencies. That, combined with a lack of vision and leadership, is creating a crisis in terms of protecting our natural resources, enhancing public health, and combating climate change.”

Nancy Goodman - vice president for policy at the Environmental League of Massachusetts

Commenting on the Baker administration's handling of climate change and the environment.

News By Category
Beltway Politics

Pesticide maker tries to kill risk study » AP News Dow Chemical is pushing the Trump administration to scrap the findings of federal scientists who point to a family of widely used pesticides as harmful to about 1,800 critically threatened or endanger…

Hillary camp scrambling to find out who leaked embarrassing info » New York Post The knives are out in Hillary Clinton's camp about who leaked embarrassing information to the authors of a bombshell new book about her “doomed presidential campaign.” …

Democratic Senator Attacks Free College Tuition » Observer NEW JERSEY POLITICS Just weeks after pleading Sen. Bernie Sanders' supporters and progressives to refrain from challenging her in the primaries before her 2018 re-election, former Hillary Clinton campaign surrogate Sen. …

Some Tax-Cut Backers Urge Trump To Drop Full Overhaul, Go For Quick Win » WBUR If you filed for an extension on your taxes this week, you're right in step with the Trump administration and Republicans in Congress. They've put off voting on their promised tax overhaul until after…

We Now Know Trump's Inauguration Donors. Where The Money Went Is Another Story » WBUR An inauguration is an expensive party to throw, and President Trump got plenty of help putting his on. Financial Election Commission disclosures released on Wednesday show that some uberwealthy donors…

Champion Patriots Honored At The White House » WBUR President Trump congratulated the Super Bowl champion New England Patriots on Wednesday, a normally joyous White House ritual marred by the apparent prison suicide hours earlier of former teammate Aar…

Pence praises Indonesia's democratic, tolerant values » Sentinel & Enterprise U.S. Vice President Mike Pence praised Indonesia's democracy and moderate form of Islam on Thursday alongside the president of the world's most populous Muslim nation, reinforcing his message with a v…

President Trump to nominate Scott Brown as ambassador to New Zealand » Boston Globe

Business

Lowell's artist-friendly reputation takes a hit with tools-materials tax » Boston Globe This city has long been known as a haven for artists, a reputation that brings flocks of tourists to open studios and other events at its many former textile mills rehabbed into funky lofts and studio…

New Hampshire Dairy Relief Bill Moves Forward » Lancaster Farming Legislation providing $2 million in drought relief to the state's affected dairy farmers that initially passed the New Hampshire Senate has also passed in the House by a 257-96 vote. …

Under wave of criticism, 'West Mass' put on pause while survey seeks public input » The Republican West Mass, the tourism and economic development brand unveiled in February by the Economic Development Council of Western Massachusetts and the Greater Springfield Convention & Visitors Bureau, has it…

Red Sox buy Cape Cod solar credits » Cape Cod Times he Boston Red Sox and Fenway Park, home of the Green Monster, invested in another kind of green on Patriots Day, buying renewable energy credits from solar installations at two Wellfleet buildings as …

Visa overhaul may pinch tech sector » The Salem News President Donald Trump wants to overhaul a visa program that allows U.S. companies to hire foreign workers, a move that could affect hundreds of Massachusetts companies from high-tech businesses to ho…

Education

How Do You Sell Common Core Standards and Tests To Unwilling Parents? Hide Them » New Boston Post An interesting game is being played by U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tennessee), the major sponsor of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), and by others who claim that ESSA both reduces federal co…

Ann Coulter Vows To Speak At UC Berkeley Despite Planned Speech Cancellation » WBUR Despite the decision of University of California, Berkeley, officials to cancel conservative commentator Ann Coulter's planned speech for April 27, Coulter and organizers are promising she will still …

A Massachusetts Educator Won the 2017 National Teacher of the Year Award » Boston Magazine

Environment

Opponents of Quabbin rattlesnake plan 'ecstatic' idea has been shelved » The Republican A woman who led opposition the state's controversial plan to locate a colony of timber rattlesnakes at Quabbin Reservoir said Wednesday she is very happy the proposal has been halted.…

In Shelburne Falls, Massachusetts environment chief unveils municipal climate change grants » The Republican Greeted by pipeline protesters and backed by state and local officials, state Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Matthew A. Beaton appeared at the Bridge of Flowers on Wednesday to announce a …

Baker-Polito Administration awards $900,000 in grants to protect state drinking water » The Republican As a means of protecting existing surface drinking water systems, $900,000 in grant money will be awarded to five different Massachusetts public water suppliers, the Baker-Polito Administration announ…

State Announces Funding Availability for Coastal Communities » Cape Cod Online The state has announced $2.6 million in funding is available through two grant programs for coastal projects that promote climate change resilience or improve coastal water quality.…

'Rattlesnake Island' Plan In The Quabbin Reservoir Is On Hold » WBUR A controversial plan to establish a colony of endangered timber rattlesnakes on an island in the Quabbin Reservoir is now on hold. According to western Massachusetts state Sen. Eric Lesser, the state…

Visit from state sparks pipeline protest in Shelburne Falls » The Recorder SHELBURNE FALLS — Standing on the Bridge of Flowers, State Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Matthew Beaton probably drew a bigger crowd than he expected, as dozens turned out in prote…

Health Care

Bending the Medicaid cost curve » Commonwealth Magazine IN A WILDLY uncertain national health care environment, something new, audacious, and risky is happening in MassHealth, the Medicaid program that provides health coverage to 1.9 million people who are…

Senator, Rep Honor Milford Regional Medical Center, HomeGoods » Grafton Patch MILFORD, MA—On Wednesday morning, Senator Ryan Fattman and Representative Kevin Kuros visited the HomeGoods in Milford and the Milford Regional Medical Center to present Senate citations. The c…

Baystate Health seeks $3.4M from state for medical school » The Republican

Housing

Overall homeless count on Cape, Islands at 5-year low » Cape Cod Times An annual snapshot census of homeless people living on the Cape and Islands conducted earlier this year shows the population of people living on the streets and in shelters is at its lowest level in t…

Cambridge planning Airbnb rules in bid to address housing costs » Wicked Local Cambridge Concerned with the city's skyrocketing housing market, Cambridge City Councilor Craig Kelly and his aide have drafted regulations limiting the use of short-term rentals such as Airbnb. But Airbnb repr…

Judiciary

Bar associations ask governor to put Western Massachusetts person on state Supreme Judicial Court » The Republican Bar associations in Hampden, Hampshire, Berkshire and Franklin counties have asked the governor to put someone from Western Massachusetts on the state's highest court.…

Court nominee keeps death penalty, abortion views private » State House News Service For the past three years District Court judges have relied on attorney Joseph Ditkoff for advice. If his nomination is confirmed to the Appeals Court, the 45-year-old will join the panel that provides…

When not guilty is not innocent » Commonwealth Magazine Aaron Hernandez died an innocent man. Technically. The former New England Patriots star tight end, who apparently took his life early this morning in his cell at the state's maximum security prison i…

Legislative

Massachusetts Black and Latino Legislative Caucus visits Randolph » Wicked Local Randolph

Local Government

We need more police on the streets, Ford says » Lynn Daily News Item Rick Ford, the former city councilor who gave up his seat two years ago, wants back in.…

Boston Public Library Returns Mistakenly Stolen Historical Artifacts To Italian Government » WBUR The Boston Public Library on Wednesday returned a number of historical artifacts to the government of Italy. The BPL says it purchased the items decades ago, but then learned that they were stolen. …

Marion's Branch Brook Project receives $230,000 grant » Sippican Village Soup Marion's Department of Public Works has just received a $230,000 grant for their Branch Brook Lane Preservation Project. …

Marijuana

Independent oversight a 'bad idea' for marijuana industry, Massachusetts auditor says » Metro Auditor Suzanne Bump on Wednesday panned the idea of giving oversight of the burgeoning legal marijuana market to an independent authority akin to the Massachusetts Gaming Commission, questioning the …

Recreational pot sales may be banned for now » The Salem News Potential recreational marijuana sales in the city may not be allowed until after the end of next year. The City Council and Planning Board will soon consider a moratorium on all recreational marijuan…

Opinion

A thick connection between community and self » Boston Globe JOE TOSCANO AND I worked at Incarnation summer camp in Connecticut a few decades ago. Joe went on to become an extremely loving father of five and a fireman in Watertown…

After the March for Science, the fight must go on » Boston Globe OVER THE LAST century, humankind has experienced a veritable revolution in biomedical discovery, which in turn has transformed human health.…

The O'Reilly factor that mattered? Hypocrisy. » Boston Globe The most popular talking head on the highest-rated news channel has been removed from his bully pulpit not because of what he said on television but because of what he is said to have done off-camera.…

Our view: Moving beyond your father's commuter rail » Gloucester Times Circle April 26 on your calendar. That's the date MBTA representatives will be at Gloucester City Hall at 6:30 p.m. to talk about the planned suspension of weekend commuter rail service on the Glouces…

Moran: Mr. 'Popular' Charlie Baker is standing tall » Herald News If Charlie Baker walked into a hardware store in Secaucus, New Jersey on a typical Saturday morning, it's doubtful that anyone would recognize him. I'm not saying he wouldn't be noticed. That's becaus…

Editorial: Exploiting Hernandez » Boston Herald The short, wasted and ultimately tragic life of Aaron Hernandez is over, but not apparently his value to those who would shamelessly use his death to promote themselves or their own causes.…

Politics

Politics heats up » The Sun Chronicle State Sen. Jim Timilty (D-Walpole) surprised everyone last week by announcing on Twitter that he is leaving the statehouse, where he represents Foxboro as part of the Bristol Norfolk District, to take…

Jesse Lederman launches Springfield City Council campaign » The Republican

30-year New Bedford police veteran says he plans to run for mayor » South Coast Today

Public Health

With mixed record on opioids, Baker joining task force » Commonwealth Magazine GOV. CHARLIE BAKER IS JOINING a White House task force on opioids, to be chaired by fellow governor Chris Christie, whom Baker endorsed in the Republican presidential primaries. Baker is bringing with…

Protecting the drinking water at Massachusetts schools » WWLP 22 Governor Charlie Baker and Treasurer Deborah Goldberg launched a $2-million program last April to help more than 850 public schools test for lead and copper in drinking water.…

Churches Step Up To Help With Opioid Epidemic, But Spirituality's Role In Treatment Is Controversial » WBUR On a recent Saturday night, hundreds of people crowded into the Belmont-Watertown United Methodist Church to mark the 26th anniversary of a local Narcotics Anonymous, or NA, group. It was standing roo…

Massachusetts air quality improves, but challenges remain » The Metro West Daily News Air quality in Massachusetts and the nation continues to improve, but many residents still breathe air that could be harmful to their health, according to a new report.…

Public Safety

Rate of inmate suicides remains high in Mass. » Boston Globe Twenty years ago, a high-profile inmate suicide in Massachusetts made national news, shined a spotlight on a state crisis, and prompted calls for reform on Beacon Hill.…

Ex-NFL Star's Death Underscores Massachusetts Inmate Suicide Problem » US News and World Report The prison suicide of former New England Patriots star Aaron Hernandez stunned football fans on Wednesday but for inmate advocates it was the latest evidence of a deep-rooted problem - the high rate o…

Should there be more supervision in prison cells? » WWLP 22 Some state lawmakers question if there should be additional surveillance …

Rep. Hay to host 'Candid Conversations about Marijuana Policies' on April 24 at Fitchburg State » Sentinel & Enterprise As a member of the Joint Committee on Marijuana Policies, Hay encourages all to attend this event to listen, learn and express their own opinions about marijuana policies and how they may affect Fitch…

Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey weighs in on need for 'thorough' look at Aaron Hernandez death and suicides in prisons » The Republican

State Finance

The next recession could make the state budget deficit explode » Boston Globe

FY2018 Massachusetts Budget Update: House Ways and Means Budget » National Law Review

State Government

Massachusetts AG Settles With Mortgage Broker and Insurance Agent Over Alleged Deceptive Practices » JDSupra On April 12, 2017, the Massachusetts Attorney General's Office (AG) announced that it had reached a settlement with a mortgage broker, its employee, and an insurance agent, resolving allegations that …

Governor Charlie Baker visits AgeLab at MIT Center for Transportation and Logistics » COMMENT On April 12, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker visited the MIT AgeLab at the MIT Center for Transportation and Logistics, where he signed an executive order establishing the state's first…

Ex-Foxboro selectman eyes state Senate seat » The Sun Chronicle Former Selectman Paul Feeney announced Wednesday he is launching a campaign to take over the seat of the state senator he once worked for. Feeney, the former chief of staff for Sen. James Timilty, D-…

Baker wants to know 'what happened and why' in Hernandez death » Boston Globe

President Trump's top prosecutor, Jeff Sessions, is 'obsessed' with marijuana, Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey says » The Republican

'Sanctuary city' is a 'political term,' and 'values' statement for communities, Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey says » The Republican

Transportation

Cost, timing of road repairs impacted by stalemate » The Lowell Sun With legislation overdue but lawmakers on break, cities and towns in Massachusetts and a leading construction trade group are urging legislative negotiators on Beacon Hill to agree to a multi-year law…

Delays in funding worry builders » The Sun Chronicle The construction industry is starting to fret the state Legislature will be too slow in approving road repair money to take full advantage of the current construction season. John Pourbaix, executive…

Utilities

Rep. Hunt Seeks Support for Alternative Internet Pilot Program » Cape Cod Online

U.S. Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Ed Markey ask FERC to revoke tree-cutting permit for Berkshire County gas pipeline » The Republican U.S. Senators Elizabeth Warren and Ed Markey have asked the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to revoke its recent order authorizing construction and tree-cutting for a natural gas pipeline through…

State program to give city discounts on solar energy » Newburyport News The Massachusetts Clean Energy Center and the Department of Energy Resources announced on Tuesday the city was selected for a state-administered program that gives residents and local businesses a bre…

Warren, Markey take on FERC over Otis forest pipeline permit » State House News Service Two U.S. senators from Massachusetts have stepped into the pipeline fray in an effort to slam the brakes on Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co.'s plans to start tree cutting in Otis State Forest. In a letter…

Gov. Charlie Baker releases $10 million in grant money for affordable energy efficiency projects » The Republican

Yesterday's Late-Breaking News

Dear GE, welcome to Boston. Let's talk taxes. » Boston Globe

On clean energy, Moody's says Mass. is ahead of NY » Worcester Business Journal

Healey to review Globe request for Baker records » Boston Globe

State senator calls for oversight hearing into Aaron Hernandez death » Boston Herald

Mass. has a troubled record on prison suicides » Boston Globe

Marikate Murren, of MGM Springfield, named to Springfield Technical Community College board » The Republican

Casinos seek to serve alcohol until 4 a.m. in Massachusetts, 2 hours past bars, restaurants » The Republican

UMass students, staff voice concerns at trustee meeting » Bay State Banner

Sen. Jamie Eldridge part of group to lobby Feds before state budget rollout » Wicked Local Harvard

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