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Today on Beacon Hill

11:00am Senate Session, Informal Session

11:00am House Session, Informal Session

Birthdays: Rep. Carolyn Dykema

Must-Reads

Yes, Trump can legitimately be charged with obstruction of justice » Boston Globe TO SAY THAT President Trump cannot be charged with obstruction of justice in connection with James Comey's firing just because the president had the authority to fire him — as Trump's counsel J…

Republicans knock holes in Affordable Care Act but don't demolish the law » The Washington Post Before Congress left Washington for the year, Republicans finally made good on their determination to knock big holes in the Affordable Care Act, crippling its requirement that most Americans carry he…

Trump claims Kraft will build new plant after tax overhaul. Here's what Kraft says. » Boston Business Journal Trump said Friday that Patriots owner Robert Kraft told him his paper business is going to open a plant in North Carolina as a result of the tax overhaul. But a statement from Kraft makes no mention o…

Deval Patrick's in-law faces new charges » Boston Herald Counts include rape, kidnapping and witness intimidation …

How often they voted with their party: Senators' 2017 Beacon Hill roll call records » The Republican This analysis compares how often the 33 Democrats' votes aligned with Acting Senate President Harriette Chandler, D-Worcester, and the five Republicans' voted matched those of GOP Senate Minority Lead…

Critics call for update of 40-year-old Mass. farmland preservation law » Boston Globe A 40-year-old state program designed to preserve agricultural land is under review amid complaints from farmers about how it is run. …

“Somebody the other day described Joe as a throwback — an old-school politician who never forgot anybody’s name, who always remembered where they came from,” said Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh. “He was a good man who always helped people out. He defended the underdog. He defended the person who didn’t have a voice.”

Boston Mayor Marty Walsh

Speaking about the former state senator Joseph Timilty who passed away.

News By Category
Beltway Politics

Trump and his tweets show the power of how he communicates » Boston Globe Abraham Lincoln's words were chiseled in granite. John F. Kennedy's words are embedded in the national consciousness.…

Business

A look back at the wackiest local business stories of 2017 » Boston Globe Washington doesn't have a lock on weirdness. Join us as we look back on another year of crazy business news. In 2017, city leaders fell over themselves for Amazon's attention — some even made a…

Fallon Co. proposes eliminating hotel from Seaport's Fan Pier area » Boston Business Journal The Fallon Co. said requirements outlined by the city and state “would add millions of dollars in additional and previously unanticipated cost” to a planned building in the Seaport's Fan P…

$3.9M grant issued to future fiber effort » Boston Herald Massachusetts is making another down payment on its effort to become a hub of futuristic fibers.…

Winds of worry: US fishermen fear forests of power turbines » South Coast Today East Coast fishermen are turning a wary eye toward an emerging upstart: the offshore wind industry.…

Education

'Equality Fair' at Lee school shows all is not fair in America » Berkshire Eagle Issues like fair and living wages, civil rights and human welfare are not only national legislative issues, but they're talking points in local school hallways, too. In particular, these issues litera…

UMass plans to go national with an expanded online program » Boston Globe The University of Massachusetts is planning a major expansion of its online education programs, turning to a highly paid executive as it challenges more-entrenched competitors across the country.…

Mass. schools welcome 2,100 Maria evacuees » Boston Globe Ashantie Lopez's school in Puerto Rico withstood the wrath of Hurricane Maria in September, but its transformation into a makeshift shelter halted classes as the US territory struggled to recover.…

New college for conservative Christians planned in Boston » Boston Globe In a city full of colleges and in an economy increasingly perilous for small schools, one wealthy businessman is making an unlikely investment. Next fall he will open a college in Boston geared towar…

Time switch foulup latest in Tommy Chang's woes » Boston Herald Blistering criticism from parents over school start and end times that forced Superintendent Tommy Chang to postpone the switch for a year has triggered calls for new leadership at the top.…

Environment

Critics call for update of 40-year-old Mass. farmland preservation law » Boston Globe A 40-year-old state program designed to preserve agricultural land is under review amid complaints from farmers about how it is run.…

Housing

Women, reunited at homeless shelter, find comfort in shared struggle » Boston Globe It's been years since they last saw each other and two decades since they met, but Barbara Parham and Jeanne Satterfield are reunited now and closer than ever.…

Some advocates say homelessness under-reported » Worcester Telegram & Gazette While a recent federal report claims a victory against homelessness, local advocates caution it's still very much a problem.…

Baker eyes housing crunch » The Salem News Rising property values and construction that cannot keep pace with a growing population are conspiring to crunch the state's housing supply, edging first-time homeowners out of the market.…

A tight housing market continues to push prices next year while downtown visions will be realized » Worcester Business Journal The trends are going in the right direction for homeowners: an increase in prices and a sharp drop this year in foreclosures, both in Central Massachusetts and across the state. A tight supply market …

Human Services

Full Frame Initiative: Small nonprofit creates big change for people in need » The Recorder The woman we'll call Grace was in an abusive relationship that she knew she and her children had to leave, but she faced financial hurdles.…

Labor

New England's Minimum Wage Gap Narrows Among Most States In 2018 » New England Public Radio For the most part, the minimum wage gap among New England states will narrow in 2018.…

$15 minimum wage could have big impact on teens » Boston Globe Charlestown High School junior Norma Meza works 10 hours a week as a student organizer in Dorchester, and every payday she hands the check to her father.…

Legislative

Chandler has 2018 agenda for Senate that moves beyond scandal » Lowell Sun

Rep. Muratore reflects on legislative accomplishments » Wicked Local Plymouth At the midway point of the 2017-2018 legislative session, state Rep. Mathew J. Muratore, R-Plymouth, reflects on some of the major legislative initiatives undertaken by the House of Representatives th…

Massachusetts senators make Christmas donation to Freedom Credit Union for Puerto Rican evacuees » The Republican It's become a Christmas tradition for members of the Massachusetts Senate to exchange gifts each year. "We usually give each other things that represent our districts. One year I gave everyone Dr. Se…

Political Notes: Peake allays concern caused by House chaplain's prayer » Cape Cod Times Some hearts on the Cape skipped a beat when the State House News Service issued its “House Session” roundup Thursday afternoon.…

Local Government

Sudbury ordered to pay attorneys' fees of $75K in 40B case » The Metro West Daily News In a scathing decision that accused the town of acting “with an absence of good faith,” a Land Court judge on Monday ordered Sudbury to pay more than $75,000 toward attorneys' fees of two …

OUR VIEW: Case is clear for a new high school in Attleboro » The Sun Chronicle Nearly every responsible adult who has spoken on the topic agrees that Attleboro needs a new high school.…

Marijuana

As 2017 Ends, Mass. Works Toward Marijuana Retail Sales On July 1, 2018 » WBUR In just a little over six months, the first retail sales of recreational, or "adult use," marijuana will take place. Regulations governing the new legal cannabis industry are on track to be finalized …

Read the draft regulations on legal marijuana in Massachusetts » Mass Live

Retailers look for ways around 'selling' marijuana » The Metro West Daily News Cannabis entrepreneurs are working to find a place in the Massachusetts market, sometimes treading on legally dubious ground.…

Opinion

Letter: Fight against political campaigns of hate » Berkshire Eagle The Koch brothers, the Mercers, and other far-right extremist billionaires are coming for our state representatives — and for our democracy. …

How to conquer partisan gerrymandering » Boston Globe PARTISAN GERRYMANDERING has long been reviled for thwarting the will of the voters. …

West Station is key to Boston's next great neighborhood » Boston Globe FOR THE APPROXIMATELY $1 billion it's expected to cost them, taxpayers deserve to get more out of the upcoming Allston interchange project than the Baker administration seems ready to settle for. …

Editorial: Federal tax reform's unexpected windfall? » Worcester Telegram & Gazette Every household and business in Massachusetts may be in line for an additional and quite unexpected windfall in lower energy costs as a result of the $1.5 trillion Republican tax overhaul. …

THE COLUMN: Naughty or nice? Our elves decide » Lowell Sun The timing for this year's highly anticipated Christmas Gift Column couldn't be better, with Jolly Ole' St. Nick dropping down the chimney tomorrow. Elves at The Sun, however, got an early start, deli…

Editorial: Leave policy needs fix » Boston Herald Taxpayers aren't just responsible for paying salaries and health insurance benefits for public employees. They're required to compensate them for unused vacation and sick time, too.…

GAY: Hits and misses of 2017 » The Sun Chronicle Next week in this space, I'll write about some of the things I expect to happen over the next 12 months, but first let me share some of the predictions I made a year ago and whether or not they came t…

Gelzinis: Leadership change called for at BPS » Boston Herald For the last four or five decades, the relationship between Boston's mayors and the folks they've chosen to run this city's schools has, for the most part, been a tortured one.…

Graham: 2017 Dems just rebels without a point » Boston Herald Here in Massachusetts, Democratic state Sen. Barbara L'Italien has proposed a bill enforcing so-called “net neutrality” on international internet providers at the state level.…

Politics

Mass. Fiscal Alliance Takes Aim At Berkshires Lawmakers Over “Sanctuary Support” » WAMC The Massachusetts Fiscal Alliance is defending mailers it sent to Berkshire County residents earlier this month targeting Democratic lawmakers for supporting what it calls sanctuary policies. …

Defeated Senate candidate: Speaker probe hurt » Sentinel & Enterprise Fitchburg City Councilor Dean Tran, who is now a state senator, accomplished a rare feat in state politics earlier this month. He turned a blue seat red.…

Democrats running for Massachusetts governor in 2018 all oppose new natural gas pipelines » The Republican If a Democrat wins the Massachusetts governorship in 2018, natural gas companies should not expect an ally in office.…

Joseph Timilty, 79, former state senator who waged epic mayoral battles against Kevin White » Boston Globe n a Dorchester union hall in 1979, several nights before his third Election Day face-off with Mayor Kevin White, Joseph F. Timilty exhorted a cheering crowd of some 400 supporters.…

White House hopes always run high in Massachusetts despite the state's size » Sentinel & Enterprise Massachusetts is known for many things -- fanatical sports fans, a sprawling Cape Cod shoreline and an accent that has stymied generations of actors -- not to mention a public water supply that sparks…

Public Safety

Massachusetts lawmakers could consider statewide police body camera regulations » Mass Live

Amid tensions, fallout shelters get another look » Boston Globe They were stashed there in the event of a nuclear attack. And they are still there, more than 50 years later, in a dark, concrete crawl space in the basement of a South Boston middle school: Civil De…

State police to pay $30K to probe handling of report of Dudley judge's daughter » Worcester Telegram & Gazette The Massachusetts State Police will pay $30,000 for two law enforcement experts to investigate whether top brass on the force erred in handling the arrest of a Dudley judge's daughter in October.…

State Government

Elections official wrestling with date for 2018 primary » Boston Herald BOSTON — The state's top elections official is reaching out to the public for advice as he tries to set a date for next year's state primary.…

Transportation

Herring Cove Beach parking lot crumbles, again » Wicked Local Truro The northern side of the Herring Cove Beach parking lot took another hit from Mother Nature last week. Strong winds and seawater battered the already unstable pavement, causing a collapse closest to t…

As apps like Waze reroute commuter traffic, towns fight back » Boston Globe It is bumper to bumper as far as the eye can see, the kind of soul-sucking traffic jam that afflicts highways the way bad food afflicts rest stops.…

Union Station Project Earns Top Brownfield Redevelopment Honor » Business West Springfield's Union Station — and the project to bring it back to productive life after more than 40 years of dormancy — have both been described using a whole host of words and phrases.…

MTBA rips Keolis investigation of train car detachment » Boston Herald he MBTA's private commuter rail operator fumbled the early stages of a probe into how a car abruptly broke free from a moving train in September, failing to interview witnesses and running afoul of fe…

Utilities

Five Berkshire towns displeased with Charter-Spectrum cable TV box rental requirement » Mass Live

Barnstable wary of proposed Vineyard Wind project » Cape Cod Times Toxic transformer fluids could pollute drinking water if leaks occur at a substation where an offshore wind energy developer plans to connect to the region's electric grid, according to an attorney fo…

Dalton opts to purchase net metering energy credits from both Hampshire Cow Power, BDV Solar » Berkshire Eagle After a lengthy discussion with Beth Greenblatt of Beacon Integrated Solutions at a special meeting Monday, the Select Board chose to purchase net metering credits from both Hampshire Cow Power, a pri…

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Yesterday's Late-Breaking News

Our view: Recovery coaches are vital -- and should have a credential » Gloucester Times

Senator to Call for Independent Panel for Harassment Claims » US News and World Report

After outcry, Boston schools halt plan to change start times » Boston Globe

Trump signs sweeping $1.5 trillion tax overhaul into law » Boston Globe

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