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Today on Beacon Hill

9:00am State House Innovation Day, Great Hall, State House

11:00am House Session, Informal Session

11:00am Senate Session, Informal Session

1:00pm Citizens' Housing & Planning Association Passive House for Affordable Housing Forum, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, Morris Auditorium, 600 Atlantic Avenue, Boston

Must-Reads

Springfield City Councilor Adam Gomez to challenge state Sen. James Welch for Hampden District seat » The Republican Ward 1 City Councilor Adam Gomez said he will run against state Sen. James T. Welch, D-West Springfield, for the Hampden District seat this fall. "After strong consideration and speaking with my suppo…

Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey says Republicans should return donations from Steve Wynn amid sexual misconduct allegations » The Republican Any Republican politicians who received campaign donations from now former Republican National Committee finance chair Steve Wynn should return the money after allegations of sexual misconduct against…

Secret Memo Hints at a New Republican Target: Rod Rosenstein » New York Times A secret, highly contentious Republican memo reveals that Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein approved an application to extend surveillance of a former Trump campaign associate shortly after ta…

Can Joe Kennedy Beat the State of the Union Curse? » Politico This year's opposition response to the State of the Union address has two elements to lift it from its status as a star-crossed, sometimes futile exercise: One, the president's name is Donald Trump; t…

Mayor's economic development chief considers bid for state Senate » Boston Globe John Barros, the mayor's chief of economic development, is seriously considering running for the state Senate seat that Linda Dorcena Forry will vacate, according to someone with knowledge of his thin…

Boston Agonizes Over How to Protect Itself From Future Storms » The Wall Street Journal Steven Miller watched the flooding of New York City during superstorm Sandy with a mixture of awe and dread. If New York's subway tunnels could be inundated, he wondered, what about Boston's “Bi…

Sal DiMasi's struggles in federal prison a catalyst for compassionate release » Boston Globe After years of rebuffing calls to release prisoners too frail to be dangerous anymore, Massachusetts lawmakers are poised to make it easier for sick and dying inmates to be freed before their sentence…

“Massachusetts ranks in the top three of per capita debt in the country,” said Rep. Jim Lyons (R-Andover), the lone member who opposed the package. “Our overall debt has increased from $19 billion to over $26 billion dollars since 2009. The overall debt per person in Massachusetts has grown from approximately $23,000 in 2010 to over $32,000 in 2016. Our overall spending is unsustainable. My job is to protect the hardworking taxpayers and families of my district and that is exactly what my vote does.”

Representative Jim Lyons

Speaking about the affordable housing bill which he was the only member to oppose.

News By Category
Beltway Politics

Republicans give voice to audacious effort to discredit FBI, Mueller » Boston Globe Could a four-page memo expose FBI wrongdoing so severe that it triggers massive firings and a scandal of a scale not seen since Watergate?…

Kochs rally donors to spend more to protect business gains » Boston Globe The Koch brothers and their network of wealthy donors have a lot to be happy about after the first year of the Trump administration. And they plan to spend hundreds of millions of dollars to help ensu…

Steve Wynn Stepping Down As RNC Finance Chairman Amid Sexual Misconduct Allegations » WBUR Real estate and casino magnate Steve Wynn relinquished his duties as finance chairman for the Republican National Committee on Saturday after The Wall Street Journal reported an alleged pattern of sex…

Moulton will bring Salvadoran guest to State of the Union » The Salem News Congressman Seth Moulton will bring a guest with him next week when he attends President Trump's 2018 State of the Union address.…

US Rep. Richard Neal seeks White House update on Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands hurricane recovery efforts » The Republican U.S. Rep. Richard Neal, D-Springfield, asked Trump administration officials this week to provide an update on the federal government's efforts to restore electricity and other basic services in Puerto…

US Rep. Richard Neal invites Hampden County Sheriff Nick Cocchi as guest for President Donald Trump's 1st State of the Union Address » The Republican Hampden County Sheriff Nick Cocchi will join U.S. Rep. Richard Neal, D-Springfield, as the congressman's guest for President Donald Trump's first State of the Union Address next week.…

Business

New name just the tip of Salem foundation's rebranding effort » The Salem News Now in its 26th year, the Salem Award Foundation's board has decided to take on a new name and rebrand itself as Voices Against Injustice.…

Berkshire Museum art-sale litigators not always on opposing sides » The Berkshire Eagle They don't usually sit at the same table when they see each other at work, but for legal amigos William F. Lee and Michael B. Keating, the respect runs deep.…

Maine bottlers say their raw water is like 'miracle drug' — and safe » Boston Globe At the top of a remote hillside here in Cumberland County, at the end of an unpaved road, two men enter a small stone building and lift a large stainless steel lid that reveals a hole in the earth.…

Waiting game for AG report, as Berkshire Museum injunction expires Monday » The Berkshire Eagle The high-stakes Berkshire Museum art sale hits a pivot point Monday, when the Attorney General's Office delivers the fruit of its monthslong investigation into the planned deaccession of 40 of the ins…

Boston's Bid For HQ2 Overlooks Amazon's Awful Labor Practices » WBUR Everyone who's someone in Boston wants to be Jeff Bezos's friend.…

Employee theft 'shockingly common' at nonprofits » Boston Globe A board member for the Somerville Homeless Coalition was reviewing the nonprofit's annual financial documents in 2015 when he spotted something odd. The forms said the chief operating officer, the No.…

Court filing suggests talks underway to resolve Berkshire Museum art sale » Berkshire Eagle

Education

New Metco leader is a social justice advocate with big plans for expansion » Boston Globe Milagros Arbaje-Thomas believes in Metco — so much so that she enrolled her two girls in the program, sending them to school in Brookline.…

After report he was contacted about Harvard's top job, World Bank chief says he's staying put » Boston Globe Harvard University's presidential search committee recently contacted Jim Yong Kim, the president of the World Bank Group and a former president of Dartmouth College, about the school's top position,…

Funds for buses causing stress for regional schools » Sentinel & Enterprise As local regional school district officials and school committee members begin the early talks for the fiscal 2019 school budget, district business administrator Julie Suprenant is not optimistic abou…

Bright Futures early childhood educators are optimistic positive changes coming: Viewpoint » The Republican Watch Kejo Kelly in action on any given day, and you know immediately that she loves her job and, most importantly, she loves the children.…

In defense of recess » Commonwealth Magazine WHEN YOU WERE YOUNG, could you spend six or seven hours in a classroom without going outside? Could you sit still for hours at a time, without a chance to run around and get your energy out? Today, th…

Jeff Riley, Lawrence official, gets nod for state education commissioner » Boston Globe

POLITICS: Money matters for college students » Wicked Local Arlington

Environment

As We See It: The fact on climate reality and what you can do about it » The Daily News of Newburyport First, we need to understand the terminology. There is a difference between words like “climate change” and “global warming”, and what we perceive as New England's ever-changin…

Herbicide opponents gear up for the next fight » Wicked Local Harwich Another year, another battle over herbicide use under the power lines, as outlined under Eversource's new Vegetation Management Plan, except that there is no plan as yet and the swords remained sheath…

Forecast sparks sandbag prep in Provincetown » Cape Cod Times After severe flooding during the Jan. 4 storm, town officials have sandbags ready for the coming week when high tides, a full moon and heavy rains are predicted to converge.…

Senators assembling omnibus clean energy bill » Boston Business Journal

Gaming

Fantasy sports sites could face hefty fees » The Salem News Fantasy sports websites would be regulated like casinos and slots parlors, and face hefty fees and taxes for operating in Massachusetts, under a new plan that industry officials say will block startup…

State gaming panel to hold hearing on allegations of misconduct against casino mogul Steve Wynn » Boston Globe

If sexual misconduct allegations against Steve Wynn are true, he fails Massachusetts casino standards, Gov. Charlie Baker says » The Republican

Health Care

Paying more and getting less: As hospital chains grow, local services shrink » STAT News When most hospitals close, it's plain to see. Equipment and fixtures are hauled out and carted away. Doctors and nurses leave and buildings are shuttered, maybe demolished.…

Former Sen. Michael Knapik takes job with Baystate Health » The Republican

Housing

Truro mulls townwide restriction on house size » Cape Cod Times An open forum Tuesday will give residents the chance to talk about a possible zoning amendment to limit house size for new construction townwide.…

Immigration

Lives left in the balance amid DACA uncertainty » Boston Globe Elias Rosenfeld, a sophomore at Brandeis University who is majoring in political science and sociology, dreams of becoming a lawyer.…

Martha's Vineyard immigration case headed for Supreme Court » Martha's Vineyard Times The U.S. Supreme Court has decided to hear a case that has a Martha's Vineyard connection and would settle a key conflict in the immigration debate. At issue is how and when notice is given of deporta…

Activists Hail Release Of Western Mass. Resident From ICE Detention » WAMC A western Massachusetts man who is facing deportation to Iraq was freed this week from detention. Another undocumented immigrant who has lived in the Springfield area for decades continues to r…

Insurance

2,000 Health Connector customers lack valid addresses, audit finds » The Republican

Labor

Salary program for women takes aim at wage gap » Boston Herald State Treasurer Deb Goldberg is touting a new program aimed at bridging the wage gap between working men and women.…

Legislative

The Column: Intrigue over senator's departure » Lowell Sun STATE SEN. Linda Dorcena Forry's abrupt resignation from the Senate last week to work for Boston construction magnate John Fish is worthy of speculation on several fronts:…

Departure of only black senator leaves void in Statehouse » South Coast Today In a week of major developments on Beacon Hill, the sudden departure of state Sen. Linda Dorcena Forry may easily have been the most surprising of all.…

Massachusetts State Senate sessions subdued after Stan Rosenberg's resignation » Wicked Local Taunton Senate sessions and atmosphere in general have been more toned down in recent weeks and some senators and their staffs say there is still a dark cloud over the Senate because of the resignation of for…

Dark cloud remains amid Rosenberg investigation » Lowell Sun Beacon Hill Roll Call records local representatives' and senators' votes on roll calls from the week of January 22-26. …

Friedman appointed to review Senate's sexual harassment policies » Wicked Local Burlington State Sen. Cindy Friedman, D-Arlington, was among nine senators appointed to a committee that will review the state Senate's sexual harassment policies and procedures, a task they have about four mont…

Local Government

First draft of policy guidelines tailor-made for MetroWest approved » Wicked Local State and local officials worry the needs of the MetroWest and Milford region are being largely excluded from state policy discussions. “The state has a plan for cities, it has a plan for rural …

A man's legacy, Lowell's pride strong at Tsongas Center » Lowell Sun Ailing from a bone marrow transplant, his wife Niki received a call from then-City Manager Brian Martin. He wanted to know how Paul would feel about the city naming the venue after him. …

Hinds, others, call for greater promotion of the region's outdoor recreation » The Greenfield Recorder Glancing out at the snowy “great outdoors” just beyond the windows at the Country Club of Greenfield on Friday, state Sen. Adam Hinds pointed to an obvious resource that he said shouldn't …

At forum, state officials urged to bring development to Nashoba Valley » Lowell Sun Small towns in North Central Massachusetts and the Nashoba Valley want state leaders know that they're open for business and ripe for economic development. …

Keller @ Large: City Council President Wants Boston To 'Think Outside The Box' » CBS Boston It has become customary for Boston City Council presidents to join Jon Keller to discuss their agenda after they have been elected.…

Worcester councilors are asked to scrap automatic pay raises » Worcester Telegram Councilor-at-Large Konstantina B. Lukes is asking her City Council colleagues to permanently eliminate the automatic cost-of-living pay raise they are entitled to under the city's salary ordinance, be…

Lynn house may be demolished due to drug overdoses » Lynn Daily News Item A Chancery Court home that has been the site of at least 20 overdoses in the past five years could be headed for demolition.…

Opinion

Full accounting needed on Northern Pass deal » Boston Globe THE BAKER ADMINISTRATION had to know it was courting controversy by picking Eversource's Northern Pass project as the winner of a lucrative state bid on Thursday. …

Our Opinion: Eversource a suspect hydropower choice » The Berkshire Eagle In 2016, the Massachusetts Legislature passed a law that would force the state to diversify its energy sources. It was a sensible, visionary move from the point of view of environmental stewardship an…

Our view: Equal justice -- for those who can afford it » Gloucester Times Access to a lawyer, in many instances, is considered a constitutional guarantee, thanks largely to the travails of Clarence Earl Gideon.…

The Berkshire Museum defends its most important asset: its open doors » Boston Globe WHEN THE financially struggling Berkshire Museum in Pittsfield, Mass., publicly announced last July that it had decided to sell 40 items from its vast holdings — a 40,000-piece collection encom…

Time is now for Massachusetts to invest in early education (Guest viewpoint) » MassLive I want to thank Springfield early childhood educator Kejo Kelly for sharing her story in The New York Times Magazine article, "Why Are Our Most Important Teachers Paid the Least?," reprinted in today'…

Don't slight Salem witch trial history » Boston Globe NO MATTER how rich or successful you become, you should always remember where you came from. Unfortunately, the Peabody Essex Museum seems to have forgotten.…

Bolling: More women, minorities must join political ranks » Boston Herald You'd be hard-pressed to find anyone, particularly in communities of color, who doesn't feel the resignation of dynamic state Sen. Linda Dorcena Forry is a tremendous loss — both at the State H…

At Trump address, a soldier who stands tall for her rights » Boston Globe Sitting in the House chamber for President Trump's State of the Union address on Tuesday will be a soldier the president believes has no right to serve this country.…

Analysis: Rebuttal role is big risk, little reward for Rep. Joe Kennedy III » Boston Herald Few tasks in Washington come with such high political risk and such little opportunity for reward as giving the rebuttal to the president's annual address to Congress.…

Politics

Gubernatorial candidate Jay Gonzalez visits Fall River » Herald News Democratic gubernatorial candidate Jay Gonzalez visited Fall River on Sunday, meeting with a group at T.A.'s Restaurant on South Main Street.…

Baker, other GOP governors thriving in Democratic states » South Coast Today Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker loves taking selfies — with schoolchildren, Statehouse visitors, police, and even a zoo elephant. It's all part of a charm offensive that has helped propel the …

Gubernatorial candidate Setti Warren's New Bedford appearance focused on opioids, funding » South Coast Today Gubernatorial candidate Setti Warren, mayor of Newton, the man some think could topple Republican Charlie Baker in the next election, came to this city Saturday with a message he has been spreading ac…

Dorcena Forry's open state Senate seat draws interest from several possible candidates » Boston Globe The sudden departure of state Senator Linda Dorcena Forry from Boston's political scene on Friday had many of her former Beacon Hill colleagues contemplating their futures Saturday.…

Mazen drops out of 3rd District congressional race » Sentinel & Enterprise Nadeem Mazen, a former Cambridge city councilor and political activist, announced he was withdrawing from the race due to concerns over meeting fundraising demands exacerbated by a recent health scare…

Four local candidates for 3rd district participate in forum » The Eagle Tribune Four political hopefuls with ties to the Merrimack Valley sat down for a campaign forum in Haverhill on Saturday to discuss what makes them the best representative for the 3rd Congressional District.…

Gov. Baker backs away from casino mogul Steve Wynn » Boston Herald Gov. Charlie Baker is distancing himself from embattled casino mogul Steve Wynn, whose prolific tenure as finance chair to the Republican National Committee was cut short by a scathing report allegin…

Joe K's star turn dimmed by Dem leadership's suddenly plummeting stature » Boston Herald U.S. Rep. Joseph P. Kennedy's star turn rebutting President Trump's State of the Union tomorrow is a national boost for the Brookline Dem and Massachusetts — but it comes amidst decaying confid…

SUNDAY NOTEBOOK: Be on the lookout for mayor's missing dog » Sentinel & Enterprise THE FIRST DOG of Leominster is officially missing. Mayor Dean Mazzarella took to Facebook Tuesday to say that he was looking for his dog, Louie. …

Gomez Steps into Senate Race and toward Primary Battle with Welch » Western Mass Politics and Insight On Friday, nomination papers for state offices became available, prompting an early salvo of pols' intentions. For example, despite an investigation into his husband, Amherst Senator Stanley Rosenberg…

3rd District candidate Das comes out swinging in Sun Editorial Board meeting (VIDEO) » Lowell Sun 3rd Congressional District candidate Abhijit "Beej" Das minced no words when asked for specific opinions on politics and policy.…

Mazen bows out of CD3 field, cites fundraising and health » State House News Service

Brookline Resident Tommy Vitolo Kicks Off State Rep Campaign » Brookline Patch

Public Health

New mothers overcoming addiction face a world of obstacles » Boston Globe Last June, Dajia Brown embarked on a dangerous phase of life — so dangerous that many in her situation do not survive.…

Group takes part in vigil, march to oppose closure of Morton maternity ward » Taunton Gazette The weather was frigid, but the fervor was strong among a crowd of about 60 people who came to Taunton Green late Friday afternoon to pledge a united front opposing the complete closure of the materni…

Public Safety

Wellesley Fire Department earns state grants » The Wellesley Report Wellesley Fire Department Earns State Grants for Fire Education Programs…

Turn in bump stocks before ban begins this week, Massachusetts State Police say » The Republican The Massachusetts law prohibiting bump stocks and trigger cranks goes into effect on Thursday and the Massachusetts State Police are urging people to turn in those devices.…

State Government

How they voted: Western Mass. lawmakers weigh in on archaic laws, housing package » The Republican Massachusetts House and Senate lawmakers cast ballots on measures ranging from a $1.7 billion housing package to abolishing archaic laws as they met for various legislative sessions this week. …

A.G. Healey to host discussion tonight » The Eagle Tribune Mass. Attorney General Maura Healey will host a town hall-style discussion beginning at 6:30 PM tonight, Monday, January 29, at the Hunking School, 480 S. Main Street.…

Transportation

“Major” East-West rail announcement expected Monday » WWLP 22 News Monday, Massachusetts State Senator Eric Lesser is set to make a major announcement at Union Station regarding a proposed east-west rail link study.…

Ah, South Coast Rail promises, must be an election year » Herald News “And after more than three decades of lip service, we're going to make commuter rail from Fall River and New Bedford to Boston a reality,” Baker proclaimed roughly a third of the way into …

BRPC Wants to Know How Towns Spend Chapter 90 Funds » iBerkshires One of the first things Gov. Charlie Baker did on taking office in 2014 was release an additional $100 million in money for cities and towns to repair roads.…

$420,000 for East Road bridge replacement » Athol Daily News

East-West rail study's inclusion in MassDOT plan a 'major breakthrough,' Sen. Eric Lesser says » The Republican

East-West rail study back on track » WWLP 22 News

Utilities

Fossil fuel burners, clean energy sector, and Democrat Setti Warren pan Eversource hydro deal for Massachusetts » The Republican The Baker administration's decision to award multi-billion-dollar clean power contracts to Eversource Energy and Hydro-Quebec has revealed areas of common cause between fossil fuel interests and renew…

AG Healey to scrutinize Baker's choice of Northern Pass in Massachusetts clean energy procurement » The Republican Attorney General Maura Healey intends to scrutinize a multi-billion-dollar clean energy deal recently selected by the administration of Republican Gov. Charlie Baker.…

Solar Fees are Burning Southern New England » ecoRI The solar industry and its customers are getting hit with higher costs. President Trump's recent decision to impose tariffs on imported solar panels has led to accusations of favoritism toward the fos…

Baker plans home energy audit » State House News Service

Friday's Late-Breaking News

'It's A Prison. It's Punishing Addicts': Calls To Reform Civil Commitments Increase » WBUR

Springfield Cannabis Co. gets higher grades on updated presentation for proposed marijuana store in East Springfield » The Republican

Newbury College to shut down in the spring » The Boston Globe

The Loop takes over 5,000 riders through downtown Springfield in 1st 3 months; city wants schedule to align with trains » The Republican

Baker Chooses Wind over Fishing [OPINION] » WBSM

In shift from first election, Healey to raise funds from donors for inaugural party » The Boston Globe

Hector Montesino appointed to Alzheimer's advisory council » Wicked Local Concord

Somerville Receives $500K For Water, Sewer Improvements » Wakefield Patch

Future of Transportation: Baker says state needs to build reliable system » Fox 25 News

Commission’s transportation recommendations unveiled » Commonwealth Magazine

GE says it may replace KPMG as auditor » Boston Business Journal

Offshore Wind Auction For 390,000 Acres South Of Mass. Blows Through Sale Record » WBUR

In Quebec, clean energy goes to waste. Let’s use it. » The Boston Globe

State commission recommends VC funding for transit technology » Boston Business Journal

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The Week Ahead

Monday - 1/29

9:00am State House Innovation Day, Great Hall, State House

11:00am House Session, Informal Session

11:00am Senate Session, Informal Session

1:00pm Citizens' Housing & Planning Association Passive House for Affordable Housing Forum, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, Morris Auditorium, 600 Atlantic Avenue, Boston

Tuesday - 1/30

8:30am 2018 Mass. Muslim Lobby Day, State House, Boston

10:00am Joint Committee on Housing, Public Hearing

12:00pm Joint Committee on Consumer Protection & Professional Licensure, Public Hearing

1:00pm Joint Committee on Labor & Workforce Development, Public Hearing

1:00pm Joint Committee on Judiciary, Public Hearing

1:00pm Joint Committee on State Administration & Regulatory Oversight, Public Hearing

1:00pm Joint Committee on Telecommunication, Utilities and Energy, Oversight Hearing

1:30pm Joint Committee on Economic Development & Emerging Technologies, Public Hearing

6:00pm Geoff Diehl for Senate 2018 Kick-Off with Matt Light

6:00pm Arlington Fundraiser for Attorney General Maura Healey

8:00pm State of the Union Watch Party with Rep. Kevin Kuros

Wednesday - 1/31

9:30am Automatic Voter Registration Lobby Day, State House, Boston

10:00am Citizens' Housing & Planning Association Public Housing and Rental Assistance Committee Meeting, 18 Tremont Street, Suite 401, Boston

11:00am Senate Committee on Ways & Means, Oversight Hearing

11:00am House Session, Full Formal Session

12:00pm Alliance Against Doctor Prescribed Suicide Press Conference, Grand Staircase, State House

2:00pm Joint Committee on Revenue, Public Hearing

6:30pm Geoff Diehl for Senate Reception at "The Barn" with Rep. Jim Lyons

Thursday - 2/1

10:00am Mass. Gaming Commission Public Hearing, 101 Federal Street, 12th Floor, Boston

10:00am Joint Committee on Public Safety and Homeland Security, Public Hearing

10:00am Joint Committee on Mental Health, Substance Use, & Recovery, Executive Session

11:00am House Session, Informal Session

1:00pm Senate Session, Full Formal Session

Friday - 2/2

No Hearings Scheduled


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