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Today on Beacon Hill

10:00am Joint Committee on Education, Public Hearing and Exectuive Session

10:30am Joint Committee on Financial Services, Banking Oversight

11:00am House Session, Informal Session

11:00am Senate Session, Informal Session

1:00pm Joint Committee on Mental Health, Substance Use, & Recovery, Public Hearing

1:30pm Disability Caucus, Nurses Hall, State House

2:00pm Joint Committee on Export Development, Informational Hearing

6:00pm John Kingston for Senate Campaign Headquarters Opening Celebration

Birthdays: Rep. Todd Smola, Senator John Keenan

Must-Reads

Noncompete contracts in Massachusetts? Lawmakers are near a deal » Boston Globe Negotiators on Beacon Hill say they're closing in on a compromise to restrict the use of noncompete contracts, after a previous effort collapsed in the final hours of the Legislature's last two-year s…

Rep. Atkins will not seek re-election » Lowell Sun State Rep. Cory Atkins will not run for re-election in the fall, according to a published report. Atkins, 68, told the Concord Journal she made a "hard decision" to retire at the end of the year but f…

14-mile dike could protect Greater Boston from sea level rise » Commonwealth Magazine A RECENT story in the Boston Globe, with the headline “Floods seen as warning of Boston's future,” described how sea level rise and storm surge effects predicted for later in the century m…

Drop in Massachusetts income tax expected as state budget revenue consensus reached » MassLive Next year's Massachusetts state budget will estimate that the state will bring in $27.594 billion in tax revenue, or 3.5 percent more than in the current fiscal year. The consensus revenue estimate, w…

Small donors power Warren fundraising » Politico Massachusetts Elizabeth Warren, the Senate's most prolific fundraiser, closed out 2017 with another strong fundraising haul — $2.88 million over the final three months of the year.…

With Gas Taxes in Peril, More States Study Alternatives » Governing After more than a decade of watching Oregon and a handful of other states test alternatives to traditional gasoline taxes, more states, with the help of federal money, are now joining the quest.…

Trump's first-year report card: Voters say he's no genius » Politico Massachusetts Donald Trump's quarterly report card is in — and if he were back in school, he'd find himself on academic probation.…

How Charlie Baker ditched Trump to become America's most popular governor » Politico Massachusetts Donald Trump got crushed by Hillary Clinton in Massachusetts. And after his first year in office, polls show the president is now even less popular here.…

“There’s enough history now with noncompete legislation,” Lewis said in an interview. “We’re fully aware of what the hot-button issues are and where there’s likely to be concern. . . . I have confidence that we can achieve that reasonable compromise.”

Senator Jason Lewis

Hoping the legislature can pass legislation to restrict the use of noncompete contracts.

News By Category
Beltway Politics

Shutdown looms as Republicans seek short-term spending deal for government » Boston Globe President Trump's incendiary words about immigration have dampened the prospects that a broad spending and immigration deal can be reached by the end of the week, raising the possibility of a governme…

After touring Puerto Rico, Mass. congressional delegation calls for more post-hurricane aid » Boston Globe A family shelter is being powered by its fourth generator because electricity still hasn't been restored. A children's hospital is struggling to stay open because donations have dried up. Blue tarps d…

The Senate's push to overrule the FCC on net neutrality now has 50 votes, Democrats say » The Washington Post Fifty senators have endorsed a legislative measure to override the Federal Communications Commission's recent decision to deregulate the broadband industry, top Democrats said Monday.…

Business

Legislation would take striped bass off the menu » Cape Cod Times The sacred cod hangs over the heads of legislators in the Massachusetts House of Representatives, but on Mac's Seafood website it's a striped bass. The fish is held by an employee staring into the ca…

Accenture to add 400 jobs in Boston » Boston Globe Consulting giant Accenture is unveiling plans Tuesday to add 400 new technology jobs in the Boston area by the end of 2020, growing its workforce by more than 25 percent.…

Accenture to hire 400 as it opens new Boston 'innovation hub' » Boston Business Journal The expansion comes after Accenture has acquired two local companies in the past year.…

Bill would allow puppy mills to flourish » Cape Cod Times As an animal lover and an animal sheltering professional, I want to thank my state lawmakers – Sen. Julian Cyr, D-Truro, and Rep. Dylan Fernandes, D-Falmouth, for their recent humane votes (No …

Initial coin offerings soar, but regulators warn of scams » Boston Herald Tech startups, including some in Boston, have raised billions of dollars over the past year by selling their own digital currency, but experts and regulators are warning that the suddenly exploding ma…

Proposed urban farm zoning change triggers showdown » The Salem News A proposed tweak to a city zoning ordinance has set the stage for a showdown between a local farm and its neighbors, and the clash begins Wednesday night.…

Discuss Local Retail With Task Force » Cape News State Senators Julian Cyr and Vinny deMacedo will host a public meeting of the Massachusetts State Senate Task Force on Strengthening Local Retailers. …

Springfield cultural organizations hope to boost region's economy through 'cultural compact' (Photos) » The Republican

Civil Rights

Where to put an MLK memorial in Boston? » Boston Globe While he was struggling to come to terms with the aftermath of the 2016 presidential election, Paul English traveled to one of his favorite places: the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial in San Franc…

MLK speakers rip 'racist' prez » Boston Herald President Trump was the target of scathing bipartisan attacks at yesterday's 48th annual Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Breakfast, with a crowd of 1,000 repeatedly cheering bitter criticism of the pr…

U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren calls President Donald Trump 'racist,' his comments 'evil' » The Republican U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Massachusetts, on Monday called President Donald Trump a "racist" and said the president's comments are "evil." Speaking in frigid temperatures outside Cambridge City Hal…

Warren Makes It All About Trump At Boston's Martin Luther King Jr. Breakfast » New Boston Post Massachusetts U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren took her war of words with President Donald Trump to Monday's breakfast honoring civil rights icon Reverend Martin Luther King Jr., using her opportunity to…

Billerica neighbor's word may be offensive, but lawsuit would be 'challenge' » Lowell Sun There has got to be a law against this. That's the reaction from displeased parents who see the provocative word -- many would call it offensive and nasty -- while they drive down the busiest road in …

Elizabeth Warren Called Donald Trump a “Racist Bully” at Martin Luther King Jr. Breakfast » Boston Magazine The annual Martin Luther King Jr. breakfast in Boston included some commentary about the president.…

Alcombright receives Peacemaker Award at annual Northern Berkshire Community Coalition MLK Jr. Day of Service » Berkshire Eagle

Education

Carbon Taxing May Be Coming To Energy Conscious States » The Drive fter President Trump withdrew the U.S. from the Paris Climate Agreement last June, many states and other municipalities proclaimed their intent to stay true to the agreement's principles. In Massachus…

Are polling places in Amherst schools safe for students? » Gazette Net At least once each year, and sometimes more frequently when there are state and presidential elections, Amherst's three elementary schools become polling sites where residents cast ballots for candida…

Chinese institute at UMass Boston is accused of promoting censorship » Boston Globe A group of UMass Boston students, professors, and alumni as well as outside advocates are raising concerns about the Confucius Institute that operates on its campus, accusing it of promoting censorshi…

State announces three finalists for education commissioner's post » State House News Service

Here are the three finalists for Massachusetts commissioner of elementary and secondary education » The Republican

Crowley: having a 'good' system is not good enough » Tewksbury Town Crier

Environment

Clinton receives wastewater grant » Worcester Telegram & Gazette Ten communities received a total of $388,000 in grants to complete Asset Management Plans that will enhance the long-term operation and maintenance of their drinking water or wastewater systems. The g…

Cleanup for Wynn casino includes polluted Mystic River » Boston Globe A key challenge to building the $2.4 billion Wynn resort casino in Everett is cleaning up the environmental mess left by a succession of industries — in the Mystic River. Working around the clo…

State may impose leash-requirement at local wildlife areas » The Patriot Ledger Strict leash laws could be coming to the English Salt Marsh. The marsh, a 289-acre expanse near the South River, is maintained as a wildlife management area through the state Division of Fisheries and…

Health Care

State is asked to investigate company that is closing local nursing homes » Boston Globe Eight state legislators are asking the Massachusetts attorney general to investigate a health care company that plans to close four nursing homes and an assisted living facility in Greater Boston, acc…

Housing

'Frost Terrace' affordable housing OK'd, will bring 40 units to Porter Square area » Cambridge Day At a contentious 3.5-hour hearing Thursday, the Board of Zoning Appeal unanimously approved a comprehensive permit for Frost Terrace, an all-affordable 40-unit residential development at 1791 Massachu…

Parking problems put pressure on Attleboro apartment project » The Sun Chronicle ATTLEBORO — The owner of the historic Bates Theater building on the corner of North Main and Park streets has cut by half the number of apartments he hopes to create as parking problems put pre…

Human Services

Work Requirements May Be Just the Beginning of Medicaid Changes Under Trump » Governing States have requested to enact several other unprecedented policies. Kentucky on Friday reportedly became the first to get its waiver approved. …

Insurance

GE takes $6B hit from legacy insurance business » Boston Business Journal

Rep: Law needed to address gender disparity in disability insurance » State House News Service

Judiciary

Read: State Sen. Chang-Diaz's Impassioned Speech for Criminal Justice Reform at MLK Day Breakfast » Jamaica Plain News At the annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day breakfast held in Boston, state Sen. Sonia Chang-Díaz passionately called for the passing of a bill that would provide criminal justice reform, such as no m…

Labor

GOP tax cuts are so far spurring bonuses more than pay raises » Boston Globe American Airlines is handing out $1,000 bonuses to its employees. So are AT&T, Bank of America, and Nationwide Insurance. The same for Comcast, JetBlue Airways, and US Bancorp.…

Legislative

Aide ruffles Mercier's feathers » Lowell Sun POLITICAL HISTORY from Lowell City Hall has shown that sometimes who the mayor selects as the mayoral aide sometimes causes more angst than the mayoral election. Several mayoral terms ago, for example…

Concord Representative Cory Atkins retiring at the end of 2018 » Wicked Local Concord Dressed in a pink blazer, and munching on a doughnut with a cup of coffee at the West Concord Dunkin' Donuts, Rep. Cory Atkins (D-Concord) had her usual pep. She was full of stories -- some personal, …

State Rep. Denise Garlick to present community report to Dover » Athol Daily News State Rep. Denise Garlick, D-Needham, has announced her “Representative's Report to the Community” in Dover has been scheduled for Monday, Jan. 22, from 7-8:30 p.m. at the Town House.…

Local Government

North Adams Library To Host 'Look Up' Film Series Dedicated To Cariddi » iBerkshires The North Adams Public Library will host a yearlong astronomy program and film series and memory of the late state Rep. Gailanne Cariddi. Starting Thursday, Jan. 18, the library will host a "Look Up"…

Sunday Notebook: Maybe fourth time will be charm for Marino » Sentinel & Enterprise FITCHBURG'S LOUIS G. MARINO, it appears, will continue his quest to find a seat he can win in a political campaign. After a losing attempt to be elected as a Chelmsford Selectmen in 2015, he relocated…

City councilors adjust to new roles in new year » The Eagle Tribune There have been two meetings of the City Council in the new year and the newest councilor is still getting used to his new chair.…

Heroux looking for ways to cut Attleboro High School costs » The Sun Chronicle ATTLEBORO — Mayor Paul Heroux is looking for ways to bring down the cost of a proposed $266 million new high school to make it more affordable to taxpayers.…

Ware town manager apologizes for not telling selectmen they are being sued » The Republican Selectmen said they would have preferred to have been told by the town manager, rather than reading in the newspaper, that they are defendants in a lawsuit related to a closed landfill.…

Historical Commission sets priorities for 2018 » Wicked Local Sandwich Greg Anderson chaired his last Sandwich Historical Commission meeting last week, handing the gavel off to member Lisa Hassler, a local realty broker, historical preservation enthusiast, and liaison to…

Marijuana

Fed threat may mean bigger $$$ returns in pot market, chair says » State House News Service The abrupt change in the federal government's approach to marijuana law enforcement means investors in the state-sanctioned Massachusetts pot market could see bigger returns on their investments, acco…

Chabot: Legalization issue divides candidates » Boston Herald Pot shots in the 3rd District …

So... Is Pot Legal or Not in Massachusetts? » Valley Advocate

Opinion

The insults of our president » Boston Globe Once again, our news cycle is dominated by President Trump's latest comments, this time about “shithole countries.”…

Tony Blair is right: Vote again on Brexit » Boston Globe FORMER PRIME MINISTER Tony Blair's brand of moderate Labor Party politics is out of fashion in Britain these days, as is Blair himself. …

Zoning reform offers a path to economic equality and social integration » Boston Globe ZONING REFORM: SNORE. It's not an issue that gets people “chanting and singing on the Boston Common,” as one of its supporters put it.…

Battenfeld: Elizabeth Warren Trumps King day with prez-bashing » Boston Herald On a day meant to honor Martin Luther King Jr., U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren stole the spotlight instead, tearing into President Trump in a fiery speech that should generate more fuel for her national a…

A history lesson: Fitchburg's Joe Ward and Billy Galvin » Lowell Sun Billy Galvin is no Joe Ward. Who is Billy Galvin? He is the secretary of state. Who is Joe Ward? He is a former secretary of state. While they served a half a century apart, they have certain things i…

Silver Line is flawed – but fixable » Commonwealth Magazine WITH THE 7.7 MILLION SQUARE FEET of development at Seaport Square approved by the Boston Planning and Development Agency, and a multitude of other development projects filling in further and further f…

Mr. Rosenberg, it's time to step down » Sentinel & Enterprise Former Massachusetts Senate President Stanley Rosenberg isn't doing himself, citizens or the Legislature any favors. The Amherst Democrat is creating the impression that he can simply walk back into h…

Letter: Supporting 'death with dignity' for those who chose it » Telegram News

Politics

'I'm Running,' Romney Says Privately, but as a Trump Friend or Foe? » New York Times A few days after Senator Orrin G. Hatch of Utah announced that he would conclude his tenure after serving 42 years in office, the state's governor, Gary Herbert, was growing anxious about whether Mitt…

Ben Downing chats about life after the state Senate and the issues that captured him then and now » Berkshire Eagle After a decade representing 52 communities, former state Sen. Benjamin Downing, all of 35, decided in 2016 to head for the private sector. …

Gubernatorial Candidate Warren Talks Opioids In Pittsfield » iBerkshires Gubernatorial candidate Setti Warren says five people a day are dying from opioid addiction.…

Democrats running for Massachusetts governor in 2018 want more money for public education » The Republican Voters can expect charter schools and education to be a major point of debate in the 2018 governor's race.…

Gov. Charlie Baker in MLK Jr. Day speech says African, Haitian immigrants nursed his dying mother » The Republican Gov. Charlie Baker channeled difficult personal memory to throw a jab at the incumbent of the White House on a chilly Martin Luther King Jr. Day in downtown Springfield on Monday. …

Political Notes: Lack of results leaves Keating vulnerable, Tedeschi says » Cape Cod Times Peter Tedeschi, a Republican candidate for Congress in the 9th District, believes voter fatigue with partisan gridlock in D.C. may be the key to unseating U.S. Rep. William Keating, D-Mass., in 2018.…

Jim Hand: Will the mystery pollster please come forward? » The Sun Chronicle Jim Hand: Will the mystery pollster please come forward?…

Elizabeth Warren starts '18 battle with $14M » Boston Herald U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren enters her 2018 re-election campaign with a staggering $14.1 million war chest — a sign she's gearing up for the outside groups that are expected to attack heavily to…

Amherst charter opponents: Pledge cards being used by pro-charter group akin to scare tactics » Gazette Net Pledge cards and an online pledge form being used by those championing a change in Amherst's government is raising concern from those who seek to keep the status quo, with opponents equating the tacti…

Race forming early for Lovely's Senate seat » The Salem News SALEM — State elections won't come until November, but a race for the primary is already beginning.…

L'Italien raises $320G in first quarter for 3rd District bid » Lowell Sun

Public Health

Rep. DiZoglio To Push Mandating Detox Time for Narcan Recipients » The Valley Patriot

Brian Kyes, Charlie Baker pushing for forced rehab for dangerous addicts » Boston Herald The state's opioid epidemic — killing as many as five people a day in the Bay State — faces a showdown on Beacon Hill today where one front-line police chief is fighting for a bill that …

Lawmakers gear up for public hearing on Baker opioid bill » WWLP 22 Governor Baker has filed a bill, known as the “CARE Act” aimed at increasing access to drug treatment and reducing prescription drug abuse. The bill is up for a public hearing Tuesday at t…

CVS adds 42 drug disposal boxes across Massachusetts: Here's where you can drop off unwanted medication » The Republican

State rep. hears about Fall River's efforts to address opioid problem » The Herald News State Rep. Denise Garlick, D-Norfolk, said she was in Fall River to listen.…

How often they sided with Gov. Charlie Baker: Massachusetts representatives' veto support on Beacon Hill » Mass Live This analysis looks at the number of times each senator sided with Republican Gov. Charlie Baker on his 179 vetoes of items in the 2017 session.…

Bill Would Allow 72-Hour Hold On Patients Seeking Help With Addiction » WBUR A bill that would allow addiction treatment providers to hold a patient for up to 72 hours goes before a legislative committee Tuesday.…

Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno has 'open mind' to needle exchange program after past opposition » The Republican

Public Safety

Lawmakers may restrict use of Valor Act » Boston Globe The legislator who authored the Massachusetts Valor Act is working to amend it so that military service could no longer be used as a defense against violent crimes, after a disclosure that a New Bedfo…

State Rep. DuBois brings mothers gun policy group to Brockton » The Enterprise “The Moms Demand Action chapter forming in the Brockton area is another resource for area residents to take action against the senseless gun violence in our community and our lives,” said …

Georgetown to team up with neighbors for FEMA fire equipment grant » Wicked Local Georgetown The Georgetown Fire Department's air packs are running out of shelf life, and Fire Chief Mitchell Jr. is teaming up with fire chiefs in Groveland and Newbury to apply for a grant to replace them. …

State Finance

Graphic: The state's highest paid employees » Boston Globe 1 Michael Collins $1,043,225.62 Chancellor & SVP Hlth Sciences UMass system…

Some towns could get reimbursed for early voting » Athol Daily News AREA — If some Franklin County towns are reimbursed a chunk of the costs incurred from early voting in November 2016, it looks like Orange will get the most at $2,200.…

State Government

Two New England States Could Offer Third Gender Option On Driver's Licenses » New England Public Radio Two New England states could allow people who don't identify as male or female a new way to indicate their gender on their driver's license. The Vermont Department of Motor Vehicles is exploring the …

Hill bargaining could derail 3 ballot questions » Salem News Top Democrats on Beacon Hill are eyeing a legislative solution that would keep as many as three initiative petitions — a $15 minimum wage, paid family leave and a sales tax cut — off the…

State owes $1 million to cities, towns for early voting » Wicked Local Beverly Cities and towns should get more than $1 million to cover some of the costs associated with offering early voting in 2016, according to State Auditor Suzanne Bump.…

State Officials: Difficult For Faulty Ballistic Missile Alert To Occur In Mass. » WBUR A mistaken alert was sent out in Hawaii this past weekend after one employee at the state's emergency management agency pushed a wrong button. It took nearly 38 minutes for the state to send out anoth…

'Truth machine' reveals Bay State's $7B payroll » Boston Herald Pay raises negotiated by the Patrick administration drove up the state's payroll last year to nearly $7 billion, according to the state comptroller's office.…

Taxation

Beacon Hill Anticipating Another Drop in State Income Tax » Cape Cod Online Top Beacon Hill budget writers are anticipating another drop in the state income tax as part of their revenue estimate for the 2019 fiscal year that begins July 1. Secretary of Administration and Fina…

Beacon Hill anticipating another drop in state income tax » Boston Herald Top Beacon Hill budget writers are anticipating another drop in the state income tax as part of their revenue estimate for the 2019 fiscal year that begins July 1.…

Social Media Spotlight

rep_paul_mark

massgovernor

senwarren

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Byron Rushing

@ByronRushing

Jamie Eldridge

@JamieEldridgeMA

Rep. Paul Brodeur

@RepBrodeur

Sonia Chang-Diaz

@SoniaChangDiaz


Yesterday's Late-Breaking News

'Every day, he sinks lower': Mass. lawmakers blast Trump's vulgar comment on immigration » Boston.com

Trump 'represents the last gasp of a racist worldview,' Senator Linda Dorcena Forry says » Boston Globe

One Year Later: As the first anniversary of Trump's inauguration nears, three area activists look back » Gazette Net

Letter: Offering information and hope » Gloucester Times

State money helps Massachusetts communities save the environment » The Patriot Ledger

Alli Bibaud, judge's daughter at center of State Police scandal, admits to having 7 bags of heroin in car in separate case » MassLive

Law enforcement figures say Massachusetts will protect legal weed industry in face of federal threat » MassLive

Concerns heard during public hearing on closing of Vibra Hospital in Springfield » Western Mass News

Vibra meeting to detail closing procedures, employee severance » WWLP 22

Democratic Hopeful For Massachusetts Governor To Hold Town Hall In Pittsfield » WAMC

Kool Smiles dental clinics pay $24 million to settle allegations of improperly treating kids » MassLive

Galvin's office investigating Fidelity, others over pay practices » Boston Business Journal

Gov. Baker Slams Trump's 'S—hole' Comment As 'Appalling And Disgraceful' » CBS Boston

Our view: United against offshore drilling » Gloucester Times

Mass. state payroll climbs to record $6.99 billion » Boston Globe

Give T fare revamp a chance — but enforce the contract » Boston Globe

Using marijuana to fight the opioid crisis » Boston Globe

Editorial: Fund this mandate » Boston Herald

Leaders see 'enormous progress coupled with tremendous setbacks' » Boston Herald

MetroWest, Milford organizations land state environmental grants » The Metro West Daily News

State police Major Susan Anderson, sued in redaction of Alli Bibaud's arrest report, wants to be dismissed as defendant » MassLive

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