... Baker: "We live with the status quo" if charter school question fails ...... Activists to renew push to force healthier options in vending machines ...... Suffolk poll shows Trump and Clinton tied in Florida ...... Tompkins identifies winning back governor's office as priority in Dem Party chair race ...... Report: congestion, spending, bridge conditions drag down Mass. highway system ranking ...... Walsh to join Walk to End Alzheimer's on Sunday ...... Ann Compton to speak at Nov. 2 New England Wealth Management Conference ...... SJC to unveil portrait of former Chief Justice Roderick Ireland ...... Nov. 8 legislative elections marked by lack of competition ...... Cork-and-carry bill advances in House ...... Lemire confirmed for slot on Appeals Court ...... Rick Steves to lead push for marijuana legalization in Massachusetts ...
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LATEST ADVANCES - WEEK OF SEPT. 25, 2016

The state Legislature needs to muster up the will soon to pass legislation (H 4517) closing the books on fiscal 2016, which ended nearly three months ago amid a fair degree of fogginess over Gov. Charlie Baker's efforts to close a budget gap attributable largely to overly optimistic revenue projections. Read More

WEEKLY ROUNDUP - BAKER ADMIN IN A PICKLE

Turns out Gov. Charlie Baker did have a burger of some substance on his plate. No, it wasn't the $100,000 that Paul Sagan, Baker's education board chairman, donated to the pro-charter ballot campaign. Nor was it the donations by Sagan's philanthropic fund to various pro-charter entities. Read More


BAKER MET WITH UK DIPLOMAT, LEAVES FRIDAY FOR MIDWEST WEEKEND TRIP

Gov. Charlie Baker and First Lady Lauren Baker are traveling to Ohio and Illinois this weekend, an aide to the governor said. Read More


ETHICS SEES POTENTIAL FOR "NO FURTHER ACTION" IN DCR CASE

The State Ethics Commission does not foresee the need for further action in connection with two Baker administration officials who were suspended for using taxpayer resources on a private party, basing its decision on compliance with three conditions. Read More


BAKER SAYS PUBLIC SCHEDULE LIMITED TO "GOVERNING STUFF"

Gov. Charlie Baker rejected the idea that hosting a Republican governors gathering in Boston earlier this month was done in secret, though the meetings were not announced to the media or the public. Baker quietly welcomed members of the Republican Governors Association to Boston last week for a two-day meeting, a series of events that did not appear on his public schedule. Read More


Thursday, Sept. 22, 2016

AIDE: RETRIBUTION ALLEGATIONS DISCLOSED TO BAKER IN JUNE

Gov. Charlie Baker told reporters Thursday that he learned about an alleged retribution case within the Executive Office of Environmental Affairs around 10 days ago, but an aide later said the governor misspoke about the timeline. Read More


DEM PARTY CHIEF MULLING "NEXT STEPS" IN RETRIBUTION CASE

The Massachusetts Democratic Party is talking with legal counsel "about what appropriate actions would be" in response to allegations that a staffer in the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs faced retaliation over her fiance's Senate bid, the party's executive director said. Read More


BAKER: "WE LIVE WITH THE STATUS QUO" IF CHARTER QUESTION FAILS

Gov. Charlie Baker acknowledged Thursday that if voters reject Question 2 in November it will probably take the "wind out of the sails of charter school development." A major supporter of expanding access to charter schools who has campaigned for Question 2, Baker agreed to co-host Margery Egan's nautically themed construction during Thursday's appearance on WGBH. Read More


VIDEO | POLICE HONORED FOR DANGEROUS LINE-OF-DUTY WORK

A Boston police officer shot in the face by a suspect last year and the colleagues said to have saved his life by rushing to his aid, returning fire, and killing the gunman received the state's highest award for policing on Thursday. Read More

Officer Jared MacDonald (right) of the Bourne Poli

Officer Jared MacDonald (right) of the Bourne Police Department received the Trooper George L. Hanna Medal of Honor on Thursday, the highest award that can be given to a police officer in Massachusetts. [Video/Photos: Antonio Caban/SHNS] | Photo Gallery


BAKER WANTS RETRIBUTION PROBE RESULTS "AS SOON AS POSSIBLE"

Gov. Charlie Baker on Thursday labeled allegations that a member of his administration sought retaliation against a staffer whose fiance launched a bid to unseat a Republican state senator "unbelievably disturbing." Read More


ALCOHOL LICENSE BILLS FLOW AMID CAMPAIGN SEASON

With most lawmakers on hiatus from Beacon Hill, spending time in their districts or working on their reelection campaigns, a skeleton crew convened Thursday in the House and Senate where bills allocating local liquor licenses were flowing like beers at the Cask 'n Flagon before a Red Sox game. Read More


TRUMP, CLINTON TIED IN FLORIDA, SUFFOLK POLL SAYS

Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton are locked in a statistical tie in Florida, a prized state for the leading competitors in the presidential election, according to newly released poll results. Read More


MASS. HIGHWAY SYSTEM RANKING DRAGGED DOWN BY CONGESTION, BRIDGES

Massachusetts continued to rank near the bottom of states in overall highway performance and cost-effectiveness, but has the lowest rate of fatal crashes in the country, according to a new report. Read More


BAKER ECONOMIC CHIEF APPEALS FOR MORE LUCRATIVE MUNICIPAL POST

Three candidates hoping to run what is arguably the most prosperous city in Massachusetts made their pitch to the Cambridge City Council Wednesday night, among them Republican Gov. Charlie Baker's economic development chief. Read More

ASH

ASH


DESPITE BEING UNSEATED, BAKER UPBEAT ABOUT HIS POPULARITY

What does South Dakota Gov. Dennis Daugaard -- who earlier this week dethroned Gov. Charlie Baker as America's most popular governor -- have that Baker doesn't? More Republicans, for one thing. Read More


BAKER NAMES EASTERN BANK EXECUTIVE AS STATE BANKING COMMISSIONER

The Baker administration is switching up the leadership at the state's banking division, which supervises more than 200 banks and credit unions with total combined assets exceeding $400 billion. Eastern Bank executive Terrence McGinnis, who previously worked at Fleet Boston Financial Corporation and BankBoston Corporation, was appointed Thursday by Gov. Charlie Baker as the new commissioner of the Division of Banks. Read More


FOR FIRST TIME SINCE MAY, DROUGHT DIDN'T WORSEN

For the first time since May, the scope of the drought that's dehydrated Massachusetts for months did not expand last week, the U.S. Drought Monitor reported. Read More

Green patches have begun to return to Boston Commo

Green patches have begun to return to Boston Common (bottom: 9/22), a noticeable difference from early last month (top: 8/10), though the U.S. Drought Monitor maintains that more than half of Massachusetts remains under an "extreme" drought. [Photos: Antonio Caban/SHNS]


SHERIFF LAYS OUT PRIORITIES IN BID TO BECOME "NEW VOICE" OF DEMOCRATS

Casting himself as a fresh voice who could invigorate the Democratic Party, Suffolk County Sheriff Steve Tompkins on Thursday declared his intent to run for the party chairmanship. Read More

"The party may have gotten a little relaxed, so I

"The party may have gotten a little relaxed, so I want to address that," Suffolk County Sheriff Steve Tompkins said Thursday in announcing his candidacy for chairman of the state Democratic Party that some say has been too soft on Republican Gov. Charlie Baker. [File Photo: Antonio Caban/SHNS]


GIVEN DRUTHERS, BAKER WOULD ELIMINATE POLITICAL TV ADS

Under King Charlie Baker, no one would see the words "paid for by the Baker Committee" on their television screens. Political candidates would not need to pay to appear on TV. Read More


VIDEO | BAKER: RETRIBUTION ALLEGATIONS "UNBELIEVABLY DISTURBING"

[Story Developing] Gov. Charlie Baker on Thursday labeled allegations that a member of his administration sought retaliation against a staffer whose fiance launched a bid to unseat a Republican state senator "unbelievably disturbing." Read More

BAKER [Video: Antonio Caban/SHNS]

BAKER [Video: Antonio Caban/SHNS]


SURGING UMASS ENROLLMENT CLIMBS PAST 74,000

Enrollment at the five University of Massachusetts campuses shot up 27 percent over the past decade and surpassed the 74,000 mark for the first time this year, presenting university overseers with a welcome challenge: managing growth. Read More


SURGERY CENTER DISPUTE CLOUDS BROADER OVERHAUL OF DPH REVIEW PROGRAM

While proposed changes to the process by which state officials examine hospital expansions were applauded at a hearing Wednesday, several speakers cautioned that restrictions on ambulatory surgery centers could end up raising health care costs and squeezing consumers. Read More


Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2016

SUPERIOR COURT NOMINEE LOOKS FORWARD TO "MASTERING NEW AREAS OF THE LAW"

Before he fielded a single question from the Governor's Council on Wednesday, Michael Callan knew he would have at least one vote for his confirmation to a position on the Superior Court bench. Read More

Attorney Michael Callan appeared before the Govern

Attorney Michael Callan appeared before the Governor's Council on Wednesday for his confirmation hearing as a nominee to the Superior Court. [Photo: Sam Doran/SHNS]


STEVES LENDING TIME, MONEY TO BAY STATE MARIJUANA CAMPAIGN

European travel expert and public television star Rick Steves will make a trip next month to Massachusetts, where the travel guide will campaign for marijuana legalization, the Yes on 4 campaign announced Wednesday. Read More


NEW OBAMA MEMO TARGETS CLIMATE-RELATED NATIONAL SECURITY CONCERNS

A presidential memorandum issued Wednesday lays out the federal government's first comprehensive framework to address the impacts of climate change on national security, according to White House officials. During a conference call prior to the memorandum's release, officials said rising ocean and air temperatures, and changing weather patterns are leading to increases in heat waves, droughts, wildfires, floods and coastal erosion. Read More


BAKER TAKES COUNCIL GAVEL WHILE POLITO ATTENDS HOMETOWN EVENT

Gov. Charlie Baker got to watch firsthand Wednesday as the Governor's Council approved one of his judicial nominees and reappointed a Parole Board member. Read More

BAKER  [Photo: Sam Doran/SHNS]

BAKER [Photo: Sam Doran/SHNS]


BAKER ASSURED BY REFUGEE RESETTLEMENT FACTORS

Gov. Charlie Baker said Tuesday the federal government has alleviated some of his concerns about people resettling in Massachusetts from war-torn countries, reporting that an "overwhelming" number of refugees already have family in Massachusetts or are women and children. Read More


TRANSPO CHAIR WANTS STATE LAW GOVERNING SELF-DRIVING VEHICLES

As the federal government and the city of Boston move toward self-driving cars, one of the state's top transportation policymakers believes state laws should change to accommodate the new technology before it is deployed in Massachusetts. Read More


TIMILTY

SENATOR FLAGS EDUCATION-RELATED LINE OF DUTY DEATH BENEFIT AS TOP GOAL

Speaking to a crowd of law enforcement officials and the family of fallen officers in Ashburton Park on Wednesday, Sen. James Timilty vowed to revive an effort to expand death benefits for surviving family members of officers killed in the line of duty. Read More

Gov. Charlie Baker paused for a moment of silence

Gov. Charlie Baker paused for a moment of silence to honor fallen law enforcement officers at the 29th annual Memorial and Reading of the Roll ceremony in Ashburton Park on Wednesday. [Photo: Sam Doran/SHNS] | Photo Gallery


MASS. LOBSTERMEN PRESS POLS TO EASE ACCESS TO RESTRICTED AREAS

Bay State lobstermen want federal fishing regulators to work with them to ease restrictions on lobstering in Massachusetts Bay and two areas east of the South Shore, proposing new safety measures that would allow boats to continue to operate while also protecting endangered whales. Read More


STUDY FUELS DEBATE OVER $$$ IMPACT OF CHARTERS IN PUBLIC EDUCATION

As charter school expansion proponents pointed Wednesday to the findings of a report published by a New York-based conservative think tank as evidence that charters actually benefit traditional public schools, opponents slammed the report as another case of Wall Street trying to dictate policy in Massachusetts. Read More


OFFICIAL BALLOT LISTS CANDIDATE OPTIONS FOR NOV. 8

The officials list of ballot options was made available Wednesday by Secretary of State William Galvin, with primaries marked by a lack of candidates giving way to a general election where competitive races are also not the norm. Read More


PROFESSOR BRIEFS LAWMAKERS ON PROBLEM GAMBLING STUDY RESULTS

An estimated 88,000 adults in Massachusetts are problem gamblers, and another 390,000 are deemed "at-risk" gamblers and may bet more than they'd planned or borrow money to gamble, according to study findings presented Wednesday. Read More

Dr. Rachel Volberg, principal investigator on a st

Dr. Rachel Volberg, principal investigator on a study looking at the impacts of gambling in Massachusetts, presented her findings at a Wednesday briefing, which included a review of how the public fit within the five categories of gambling. [Audio| Photo: Antonio Caban/SHNS] | Hi-Res


SEARCH OPENED FOR UMASS-DARTMOUTH CHANCELLOR

University of Massachusetts Board of Trustee member R. Norman Peters, a founding partner of the law firm of Peters & Sowyrda, will chair a 16-member committee charged with identifying candidates for chancellor at UMass-Dartmouth. Read More


VIDEO | DOCS, COPS MAKE CASE FOR ENHANCED TRAUMA RESPONSE

One of key lessons that came out of the response to the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing was the value of tourniquets, Boston Police Commissioner William Evans said Tuesday. After the bombs detonated on Boylston street, officers, medical providers and others deployed improvised tourniquets in a variety of ways, tying police gun belts and shirts around injured limbs and saving lives in the process. Read More

Dr. David King of Massachusetts General Hospital d

Dr. David King of Massachusetts General Hospital demonstrated how to apply a tourniquet to a leg at an advocacy day event held Tuesday by the American College of Surgeons at the State House. [Video: Sam Doran/SHNS] | Video


Tuesday, Sept. 20, 2016

STATE ED BOARD CHAIR GIFTED AKAMAI STOCK TO FAMILY FUND THAT SUPPORTS CHARTERS

Paul Sagan, a journalist turned technology executive who was tapped in 2015 by Gov. Charlie Baker to chair the Massachusetts Board of Education, stepped into the middle of the fierce election battle over charter schools this summer when he made a sizable donation to the proponents of expansion. Read More


DEEPWATER WIND OPENING NEW BEDFORD OFFICE

Headquartered in Providence, R.I., Deepwater Wind announced Tuesday it will open an office in downtown New Bedford, where Massachusetts has focused its efforts for staging offshore wind developments. Read More


CITING CROP LOSSES, FEDS ATTACH DISASTER LABEL ON 11 MASS. COUNTIES

Eleven of the state's 14 counties have been deemed "primary natural disaster areas" by the United States Department of Agriculture due to substantial crop losses that began with a February deep freeze and continued though a summer marked by severe drought. Read More


FOUR CHARTER APPLICANTS COULD SERVE MORE THAN 1,800 STUDENTS

State education officials announced Tuesday that they have invited groups behind four proposed charter schools to submit full applications, with a final decision on the proposals expected in February 2017. Read More


VIDEO | GALVIN: PREZ RACE, BALLOT QUESTIONS MAY LEAD TO RECORD TURNOUT

With seven weeks until Election Day, registered Massachusetts voters can expect to find a red booklet in their mailboxes in the coming days that will detail each of the four ballot questions they will face in the voting booth. Read More

Secretary of State William Galvin on Tuesday previ

Secretary of State William Galvin on Tuesday previewed a voter information booklet that will be mailed out to voters. The booklet will provide an explanation of each of the four questions that will appear on the November ballot. [Video: Antonio Caban/SHNS] | Video


BAKER: TRUMP, CLINTON HAVEN'T CHANGED HIS MIND ABOUT TEMPERAMENT, BELIEVABILITY

U.S. voters in seven weeks will elect the next president, and you can count Gov. Charlie Baker among the elected officials who are not directing much attention towards what many voters believe is an unpopular choice between frontrunners Democrat Hillary Clinton and Republican Donald Trump. Read More


APP LAUNCHED TO PINPOINT MBTA BUS STOPS FOR SYSTEM'S BLIND USERS

How do you find the bus stop if you can't see it? The Perkins School for the Blind on Tuesday is launching a smartphone app that it says will help the blind pinpoint exactly where their MBTA bus stop is. Read More


BAKER

BAKER LOSES MOST POPULAR GOVERNOR STATUS

South Dakota Gov. Dennis Daugaard is the most popular governor in the United States, followed by Maryland Republican Larry Hogan, according to new survey results released Tuesday by Morning Consult. Gov. Charlie Baker lost his top ranking, but is still rated the third most popular governor in the nation. Read More


CRIMINAL JUSTICE PANEL WORKING TOWARD YEAR-END POLICY DEBATE

Discussions of recidivism and community supervision slated for this fall are among the final steps in a process policymakers hope will result in reforms to the state's criminal justice system. Read More


GALVIN CONFIDENT IN LEGALITY OF EARLY VOTING

With the first run of early voting in Massachusetts set to begin in just more than a month, Secretary of State William Galvin said Tuesday he is confident the law that allows pre-Election Day voting "is legal and will be successful." Read More


DeLEO UNDERWENT THUMB SURGERY FOR ARTHRITIS

House Speaker Robert DeLeo is wearing a cast on his left hand after undergoing surgery on Friday for arthritis in his thumb. Read More


VIDEO | SHERIFF, DOCTORS TOUT BUYBACK PROGRAMS TO CURB GUN VIOLENCE

Describing gun buybacks as an "injury prevention effort," Middlesex Sheriff Peter Koutoujian said Tuesday he wanted to see the programs run by local law enforcement expand into regional collaborations that simultaneously cover counties, states or the country as a whole. Read More

Middlesex County Sheriff Peter Koutoujian spoke at

Middlesex County Sheriff Peter Koutoujian spoke at the American College of Surgeons' Massachusetts Chapter advocacy day at the State House on Tuesday. [Photo: Antonio Caban/SHNS] | Video


DISABLED, CAREGIVERS RALLY AGAINST HOURS CAP

Individuals with disabilities rallied against a new Baker administration policy and appealed to lawmakers, telling them their independence and access to caregivers is at risk. Read More

Disability advocates rallied outside the State Hou

Disability advocates rallied outside the State House Tuesday morning against new overtime regulations established by the Baker administration for personal care attendants. [Photo: Antonio Caban/SHNS]


BAKER: MBTA BOARD ASSESSING "RIGHT MIX" OF PUBLIC, PRIVATE

With most of a three-year privatization window still before the MBTA, Gov. Charlie Baker on Tuesday defended the agency's approach to shifting work to private companies, an effort that has riled the union representing T employees. Read More


HOSPITAL ASSOCIATION CHANGES NAME, BUT WILL RETAIN ITS ACRONYM

Citing changes in health care, the Massachusetts Hospital Association on Tuesday will start going by a new name: the Massachusetts Health & Hospital Association. Read More


FEDS ISSUE POLICY GUIDANCE ON AUTOMATED VEHICLES

The U.S. Department of Transportation on Tuesday is issuing policy guidelines governing the testing and deployment of automated vehicles, including recommended areas for states to consider in order to have a consistent national framework, according to the White House. Read More


MBTA TARGETS TREE PROBLEM TO IMPROVE GREEN LINE SERVICE

The MBTA has a bit of a tree problem. In the last year, T service has been interrupted because a tree limb has fallen into the right of way 21 times. Eighteen of the branches, and with them delays, have fallen on the Green Line's D Branch. Read More


Read more in the Monthly Digest


 
 
State House News Service