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Today on Beacon Hill

11:00am Senate Session, Informal Session

11:00am House Session, Informal Session

5:00pm Rep. Aaron Vega Re-Election Campaign Kickoff

Birthdays: Rep. Sean Garballey

Must-Reads

Profiles in Spinelessness: Mitt Romney caves to Trump » Boston Globe When his party turned its back on technocratic solutions to major policy challenges, Romney did too — basically repudiating his crowning legislative achievement. He switched positions on aborti…

Melania Trump's parents are legal permanent residents, raising questions about whether they relied on 'chain migration' » The Washington Post The parents of first lady Melania Trump have become legal permanent residents of the United States and are close to obtaining their citizenship, according to people familiar with their status, but the…

In massive restructuring, 800,000 MassHealth members automatically moved to new plans » MassLive Next week, MassHealth will undergo a massive reorganization in which more than 800,000 MassHealth members will be moved to new insurance plans. …

Four will compete for First Suffolk Senate seat » Dorchester Reporter Of the six hopefuls to pull papers for the First Suffolk special Senate election, four have submitted signatures to the Boston Elections Department to secure a spot on the ballot in seeking for fill t…

Dylan Ratigan declares for Congress, shakes up Stefanik race » Politico SARANAC LAKE — Former MSNBC host Dylan Ratigan declared his candidacy for Congress on Wednesday, cannonballing into the wide, shallow pool of Democrats hoping to challenge Republican Rep. Elise…

Suffolk DA's office should lead on bail reform, candidate says » SHNS The first declared candidate for Suffolk County district attorney wants to change the way prosecutors ask for bail and clear old marijuana arrests from records. …

Top cannabis regulator: Massachusetts should consider government-run bank for pot companies » Boston Globe Massachusetts should consider creating a state-run bank to serve recreational marijuana companies, the state's top cannabis official suggested Wednesday, warning that an all-cash industry would create…

Trump seems to have insulated himself from #MeToo movement » Boston Globe It could have been another #MeToo moment, but this time the powerful man accused of unwanted and sexually aggressive behavior fired back, and got away with it.…

“We have this idea that political ideology falls along a spectrum,” he wrote. “This is a false construct, and I have always tried to find the best ideas no matter who they come from. I became truly active in state politics working on carbon pollution pricing, which has national advocates including Democrats, Republicans, Libertarians, and others.”

Rep. Solomon Goldstein-Rose

Speaking about his decision to change his party registration to unenrolled.

News By Category
Beltway Politics

The Frat House of Representatives » Politico Crotch shots. Infidelity. Secret payoffs. Pants-less octogenarians. And the infamous “Bros Caucus.” Welcome to the Frat House of Representatives.…

'Fix it!' Gun violence plea to Trump from students, parents » Boston Globe An anguished father mourning his 18-year-old daughter vented his anger and pleaded for safer schools.…

Business

TelexFree Ponzi scheme fugitive stripped of Brazilian citizenship; may open door to extradition » Boston Globe The fugitive cofounder of TelexFree Inc., a multibillion-dollar pyramid scheme based in Massachusetts, has had his Brazilian citizenship revoked — a move that may open the door for his extradit…

In wake of breach, House passes credit-protection bill » Lowell Sun Months after the Equifax breach exposed the data of 145 million Americans, state legislators have taken a substantial step toward supporting consumers in the event of a similar occurrence.…

Post-Rafael, New Bedford fishing industry looks to move forward » South Coast Today For perhaps the first time, at least publicly, fishermen on Carlos Rafael vessels sat in the same room Wednesday as John Bullard, the former regional administrator for NOAA, who implemented a groundfi…

Developers cool to downtown Boston sites the state sees as hot properties » Boston Globe The two largely empty parcels at the eastern end of Kneeland Street seem like prime targets for redevelopment: next to South Station, near the Financial District, and positioned squarely over the two …

UPDATE: The Worcester Sun stops publishing in print, online » Worcester Mag The Worcester Sun has halted its operations, if only temporarily, according to an email circulating Wednesday morning.…

12-concert bill at Fenway OK'd; some residents cry foul » Boston Herald The city has signed off on what's slated to be Fenway Park's biggest live concert season ever — an expected 12-date lineup that starts in June with the Zac Brown Band's “Down The Rabbit H…

Promising Billions to Amazon: Is It a Good Deal for Cities? » Governing A review of the 20 finalist cities finds that several are already forgoing hundreds of millions of dollars in potential revenue each year. …

Crimes

Angry over potholes, Douglas man charged with threatening murder » Worcester Telegram Potholes may be the bane of any New Englander's winter, but police said Paul T. Keddy, 57, of 224 Perry St., took his frustration too far when he allegedly threatened to kill the town administrator la…

Education

Whittier to offer dental assisting training » Eagle Tribune Whittier Regional Vocational Technical High School will use a $420,000 state grant to create a state-of-the art Allied Health Center for dental, medical assisting and health assisting students.…

Legislators advance school funding bill » Bay State Banner For decades, Massachusetts policymakers have tried to address the achievement gap between low and high-income districts by desegregating public schools, implementing the 1993 Education Reform Act. Tod…

School funding lawsuit picks up as Worcester signals involvement » Worcester Mag

Environment

City and state officials to attend contaminated water pledge event in Westfield » Western Mass News City councilors of Westfield, and possibly state representatives, will be in attendance Thursday to sign a pledge to help residents impacted by contaminated drinking water.…

Eversource, ever unclear » Cape Cod Times The region's primary electrical provider, Eversource Energy, has filed a plan to deal with vegetation beneath its wires, and once again, it is generating the ire of local communities. As it has in the…

Vincent Calls Again to Shut Down Wheelabrator » Revere Journal With both the Wheelabrator – Saugus incinerator behind her along with the unlined landfill Wheelabrator seeks to expand and the Saugus River, State Rep. RoseLee Vincent once again called for th…

Coalition calls on Baker to recommit to clean energy » The Reminder

Health Care

US Rep. Richard Neal: Trump administration's push to extend short-term insurance plans aims to 'sabotage' Obamacare » The Republican U.S. Rep. Richard Neal, D-Springfield, criticized the Trump administration this week for proposing a rule that would allow Americans to buy short-term health insurance plans beyond the current three m…

Housing

This Is the Minimum Salary Needed to Have Your Own Apartment in Boston » Boston Magazine There's a good chance that if you've lived in Boston for years, you've shared a place with a couple of roommates. It's not by choice, of course—roommates are practically a financial necessity i…

Immigration

Deal struck on immigrant detention bill » Lowell Sun Key police associations are now on board with compromise legislation that will support undocumented immigrants and work to improve trust between police and immigrant communities. …

ICE arrested 7 people as they sought permanent status in Mass., R.I. » Boston Globe Federal immigration officials say they arrested seven undocumented immigrants who visited government offices in Massachusetts and Rhode Island last month to begin the process of becoming legal residen…

Citing Racism, Haitian, Salvadoran Immigrants Sue Trump Over End Of Temporary Immigration Program » WBUR

Trump admin's TPS decision based on racial bias, new lawsuit says » State House News Service

Insurance

Latest GIC plan for premiums 'kind of unheard of' » Gloucester Times

Judiciary

Carlisle attorney nominated for Middlesex Juvenile Court judgeship » Lowell Sun A family law attorney from Carlisle would fill an opening on the Middlesex County Juvenile Court, under a nomination that Gov. Charlie Baker announced on Wednesday.…

Fatal Yarmouth OD brings rare charge » Cape Cod Times In a rare indictment last week, a Barnstable County grand jury charged a South Dennis man with manslaughter in connection with a fatal overdose in March, according to court records.…

Labor

Mass. AG Says Parts Of Sick-Time Law Apply To Railroads » Law360 The Massachusetts attorney general told a federal judge Tuesday that certain sections of a state law providing earned sick-time for employees aren't preempted by the federal Railroad Unemployment Insu…

Citing bias, unions call for state labor board member to step down » Boston Globe

Teamsters back Baker, after passing on him twice » Boston Business Journal

Legislative

Massachusetts state rep's decision to leave Democrats to become independent 'not a good decision,' predecessor says » MassLive State Rep. Solomon Goldstein-Rose's decision to change from a registered Democrat to unenrolled was "not a good decision," his predecessor said Wednesday.…

Rep. Peter Kocot, 61, passes away after illness » State House News Service

Remembered As 'Gentle Giant,' Mass. House Lawmaker From Western Mass. Dies » WBUR

Long-time Northampton state representative Peter Kocot dies at 61 » MassLive

Local Government

Barnstable Beginning Process to Renovate Hyannis Armory » Cape Cod Today Progress is beginning to be made by the town of Barnstable in the reuse of the National Guard Armory building in Hyannis.…

Newburyport News Briefs » The Newburyport News State Rep. James Kelcourse, R-Amesbury, will hold office hours Friday, Feb. 23, from 3 to 4 p.m. at 23 Green St., Newburyport. No appointment is necessary to meet with the representative.…

Cyr and Fernandes hold events on the Island » Martha's Vineyard Times Sen. Julian Cyr and Rep. Dylan Fernandes will hold two events on Martha's Vineyard to mark the recent release of critical funds in the FY2018 state budget. According to a press release, these include …

After 'infamous' party, Framingham creates task force to tackle Airbnb rentals » Boston Globe Officials in Framingham are putting together a special task force aimed at developing regulations for short-term rentals through services like Airbnb after a raucous party, attended by hundreds, this …

Worcester outlines plan for early voting in fall state election » Worcester Telegram The Election Commission wants to have 14 early voting sessions before the Nov. 6 state election, including four that would be held at two locations over the last weekend in October.…

Council: Framingham mayor's new hires 'unauthorized' » The Metro West Daily News Members of the City Council took a hard line Tuesday in their dispute with Mayor Yvonne Spicer over her decision to hire two senior advisers, alerting city staff they believe the jobs were never appro…

Attleboro City Councilor received $1,000 from marijuana applicant » The Sun Chronicle City Councilor Julie Hall received a $1,000 donation from the applicant for a medical marijuana permit that Hall got through the council.…

Brockton bags $16.2M in loans to upgrade water system » The Enterprise

Maynard selectmen: Legislators discuss budget at board meeting » Wicked Local Stow

Marijuana

Pot board members say retail sales could be delayed » Gloucester Times Members of the state's Cannabis Control Commission are warning that they could delay the anticipated July 1 start of retail marijuana sales if regulators lack the technology or staff to oversee the mu…

Agawam Mayor Bill Sapelli says deal with medical marijuana facility will bring at least $125K annually to city » The Republican The Town of Agawam has inked a deal with a company looking to run a medical marijuana facility near Pynchon Point, Mayor William P. Sapelli announced Wednesday.…

Cannabis Control Commission considering changing draft regulations » WWLP 22 Recreational marijuana is legal in Massachusetts, but you still can't legally buy it. Before pot shops can open, the state must establish regulations for the industry and protocol for issuing licenses…

Opinion

The trolls are unleashed. What are social media companies doing about it? » Boston Globe Not very long ago, newspaper opinion pages encountered a worrisome trend known as AstroTurf: letters to the editor that appeared to be spontaneous grass-roots appeals but were actually part of orchest…

Jettisoning Tom Ashbrook doesn't change the culture at WBUR » Boston Globe How was Tom Ashbrook supposed to know his workplace behavior crossed a line that would someday get him fired?…

County 101 conflicts with Democracy 101 » Cape Cod Times The irony of it all. A program sponsored by the League of Women Voters of Cape Cod at the Cape Cod Community Television station was to be broadcast with three county officials: County Commissioner Leo…

Editorial: Immigration games » Boston Herald The Trump administration has done a heck of a job muddying the issue of illegal immigrants in the United States, drawing little distinction between those who take advantage of American hospitality by …

Graham: Kingston focuses on ground game » Boston Herald Can a Republican really beat Liz Warren in 2018? Even for an experienced state legislator like Rep. Geoff Diehl or longtime political insider like Beth Lindstrom it must seem a daunting task.…

Moran: Gov. Baker has a new handle on Fall River » Herald News Consider this brief quote from Gov. Charlie Baker's recent State of the State Address. With a stern sense of urgency, the first term governor proclaimed, “After more than three decades of lip se…

Proposed PVTA service changes will harm the area » The Daily Collegian The 2018 budget that Massachusetts governor Charlie Baker signed cut the Pioneer Valley Transit Authority's state funds from $23.5 million to $22.4 million. …

Common Sense Is Dead Because Everyone Is Offended » New Boston Post Last week, I dropped a video with some common-sense solutions to stopping school shootings. It was meant to spark a conversation from what I hoped would be logical Americans.…

A LOCAL VIEW: A few musings about our city » Wicked Local Somerville The Inaugural Ceremonies for the newly elected city officials that was held in the High School auditorium on New Year's Day featured the usual mix of pomp, ceremony and political speechifying. And, as…

The T is failing before our very eyes » Commonwealth Magazine Transit agency needs substantial new revenue to get the job done …

Politics

Hampden County Clerk of Courts Laura Gentile is 1st Western Massachusetts candidate to make 2018 ballot » MassLive Although nomination papers were made available just last week, Hampden County Clerk of Courts Laura Gentile has already filed the paperwork and signatures needed to appear on the 2018 ballot -- markin…

Who is hosting the 2018 St. Patrick's Day breakfast in South Boston? » MassLive Massachusetts state Sen. Linda Dorcena Forry's departure for a job at Suffolk Construction shocked lawmakers and close political watchers at the Statehouse.…

In shift, local Teamsters union backs Baker for re-election » Boston Globe Teamsters Local 25, the powerful Charlestown-based union that represents more than 11,500 Massachusetts workers and that backed the Democratic nominee for governor in 2014, endorsed Republican Governo…

Amherst state representative dumps Democrats » The Newburyport News Rep. Solomon Goldstein-Rose of Amherst announced Tuesday that he changed his party registration to unenrolled, becoming the second House lawmaker to withdraw from a political party this session.…

Althea Garrison is back in the picture » Dorchester Reporter With seemingly limitless optimism, Althea Garrison, the city's 78-year-old perennial candidate, is in the running for two legislative seats this year.…

Winchester's Donna Patalano wants to bring transparency to the Middlesex DA's office » Wicked Local Lexington When Donna Patalano looks back at the proudest moments of her career, she thinks of Frederick Clay, a Roslindale man who was convicted of murder at 16 years old and, despite maintaining his innocence,…

McAuliffe says she'll be the 'progressive change candidate' for DA » Commonwealth Magazine SHANNON MCAULIFFE may have to shift gears from a campaign that was preparing to challenge a 16-year incumbent to what is now a wide-open race for Suffolk County district attorney, but the veteran defe…

Neal challenger Amatul-Wadud vows to work for disenfranchised » Gazette Net Residents of the 1st Congressional District are not only the worst off economically in Massachusetts, they also have a sense of hopelessness stemming from a lack of responsiveness to their concerns fr…

State Rep. Solomon Goldstein-Rose leaves Democratic Party » Amherst Bulletin

Public Health

New England leaders gathering to discuss opioid epidemic » The Associated Press (AP) New England politicians, medical experts and drug treatment advocates are gathering in Boston to discuss the opioid crisis that continues to batter the region.…

Baker argues for federal aggression in opioid fight » Gloucester Times

Public Safety

Angry and scared, Mass. students join Florida survivors in gun control fight » Boston Globe Growing up in an age when mass shootings have become a tragically familiar part of American life, 18-year-old Riley Korhonen said the fear that her school will be next is never far.…

Lawmakers respond to calls for tougher gun laws » The Newburyport News With the massacre at a Florida high school last week triggering a nationwide call for an end to gun violence, some Massachusetts lawmakers are making efforts they say will keep Bay State residents saf…

Police chief's support breathes life into "Safe Communties Act" » Lowell Sun The lead sponsors of a bill that would limit the ability of state and local police to work with federal immigration officials say they've struck a compromise with law enforcement organizations on a re…

Arciero announces passage of Enhance Consumer Protection Legislation by House » Wicked Local Westford State Rep. James Arciero, D-Westford, recently announced that the Massachusetts House of Representative has passed legislation to provide added protections and resources for consumers in the event of …

Massachusetts residents continue to fight for more gun control following Florida shooting » The Daily Free Press Community members gathered at the State House Thursday in support of a proposed bill that would give family members, caregivers and health care providers in Massachusetts the ability to file for a tem…

Massachusetts State Trooper Claims Worcester DA's Office Complicit In 'TrooperGate' Conspiracy » New Boston Post The Massachusetts State Trooper who took his superiors to federal court over an order to scrub embarrassing and incriminating details from an arrest report involving a judge's daughter is not shying a…

Harvard will be first East Coast college to install side guards on its trucks » Boston Globe Harvard University announced Wednesday that it will be the first college on the East Coast to install side guards on its trucks. …

At gun violence press conference, students, mothers call for action » Harvard School of Public Health In the days following last week's shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, classmates of the murdered students have emerged as vocal advocates for preventing gun violence…

State Government

Bill Weld challenges Electoral College » Boston Herald Former Gov. Bill Weld is among a group of plaintiffs suing Gov. Charlie Baker and Secretary of State Bill Galvin alleging the Bay State's winner-take-all system of assigning electoral votes in preside…

Medford mayor appointed to two state boards » Boston Globe Medford Mayor Stephanie M. Burke has two new positions that will provide her with opportunities to promote the needs of local communities. …

In face of cyber threats, Mass. secretary of state focuses on election integrity » Worcester Telegram Amid talk of ongoing meddling in American elections by Russia or other adversaries, the head of Secretary of State William Galvin's elections division met over the long weekend with U.S. Department of…

Taxation

Data breach was twice as large as Department of Revenue said » Boston Globe A data breach at the Massachusetts Department of Revenue was much larger than the tax-collecting agency originally reported, inadvertently making private information from about 39,000 business taxpaye…

Secretary Galvin warns of increase in tax schemes » WWLP 22 Secretary of the Commonwealth William F. Galvin says that complaints to the Securities Division about tax schemes have been on the rise.…

Transportation

Traveling on the Red Line was a nightmare for many Wednesday » Boston Globe The Red Line was a transit nightmare on Wednesday, as service was interrupted at three busy stations in Boston for hours after a train motor failed, the train derailed, and a stretch of track was dama…

Hyperloop in Massachusetts? Not so fast » Boston Globe Elon Musk has so far bypassed Massachusetts and New England on his grand experiment to bring super-high-speed travel to the United States.…

300 feet of third rail damaged after Red Line derailment » WCVB Service on the MBTA Red Line resumed shortly after 5 p.m. Wednesday, hours after an incident that resulted in heavy smoke and broken windows during the morning commute.…

On an unseasonably warm day in Boston, the MBTA's Red Line underwent a partial meltdown » MassLive The visuals probably weren't what MBTA managers are looking for as they seek to steer paying customers towards taking public transit instead of popular ride-hailing apps like Uber and Lyft.…

Pollack: Time to build consensus on South Coast Rail » South Coast Today It's time to build consensus on South Coast Rail, Massachusetts Transportation Secretary Stephanie Pollack told a largely sympathetic audience Wednesday at a meeting hosted by business and community l…

Traffic congestion is taking a toll on Boston. Should Boston take a toll on congestion? » Boston.com Economists and transportation experts will tell you there's only one proven policy that reduces traffic congestion. The only question is whether the public has the palate for it.…

Boston officials might expand parking meter rate hike program » Boston Globe The city of Boston said Wednesday that it will extend a test of higher parking meter rates that resulted in more available metered spaces and less illegal parking in the Back Bay and parts of the Seap…

Electric vehicle growth influenced by state of charging infrastructure » State House News Service That whirring you hear coming down the road is the next wave of electrification. Electric vehicles will become more mainstream and as that happens drivers will need the infrastructure – mainly …

I-Team: City Councilor Calls For Change To Law That Allows Free Parking With Handicap Placards » CBS Boston After a WBZ I-Team investigation exposed rampant abuse of handicap parking in downtown Boston, a city leader is calling for a change to the state law that allows drivers with disability placards to pa…

'The situation was not acceptable,' Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker says after MBTA Red Line derailment » The Republican

MBTA trolley driver allegedly paid a person $2,000 to don 'Michael Myers' Halloween mask and attack him, prosecutors say » The Republican

Baker points to antiquated systems in wake of 'unacceptable' Red Line derailment » State House News Service

Social Media Spotlight

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@MassGovernor

Sen. Pat Jehlen

@senjehlen

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Yesterday's Late-Breaking News

South Coast Schools To Receive New Funding For Puerto Rican Evacuees » RI NPR

Massachusetts Students Lead U.S. In Advanced Placement Exams » WBUR

Some Weymouth residents split on banning pot shops in town » Patriot Ledger

Ferguson bills reported favorably out of the Education Committee » The Landmark

Former Gov. William Weld sues to overturn Massachusetts' winner-take-all presidential election system » The Republican

Massachusetts students lead US in Advanced Placement exams » Boston Herald

Success, Struggle In North Adams Mayor's State Of The City » WAMC

Lovely, Tucker: Criminal justice reform, opiate crisis among legislative priorities » Wicked Local Salem

O'Flaherty weighing DA run, McAuliffe is in » State House News Service

In Lexington: New England law enforcement's Mandarin 'go-to guy' » Wicked Local Lexington

City examines pricing pilot's impact on parking, congestion » State House News Service

Rep Says State Is Moving Too Fast With Recreational Marijuana » Framingham Patch

Carr: Cannabis commission latest coatholder landing spot » Boston Herald

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