Happening Today

Wisconsin primary

Protecting children

Attorney General Maura Healey and top public health officials will address firearm violence at a forum hosted by the Massachusetts Medical Society, 860 Winter Street, Waltham, 1 p.m.

Economic development

The Joint Committee on Economic Development and Emerging Technologies will hear from Gov. Baker and others about the governor’s proposed $918 million economic development plan, hearing room A-2, starting at 1 p.m. and Baker at 3 p.m.

Sox try again

After their season-opener game was postponed yesterday due to bad weather in Cleveland, the Boston Red Sox and Cleveland Indians will give it another try today, 1:10 p.m.

Today’s Stories

Testing the frontrunners

So the Republican establishment has drawn another line in the sand, this time in Wisconsin, to try to stop GOP frontrunner Donald Trump, who has blown past previous lines in the sand drawn by Mitt Romney and others. But you know what? This time Trump might actually fall short. Some polls show GOP candidate Ted Cruz with a slight lead in today’s Wisconsin race, helped partly by recent Trump blunders like his back-and-forth positions on abortion that have alienated just about everyone, as Boston Magazine’s Garrett Quinn reports. Meanwhile, Democrat Bernie Sanders is still making life miserable for Hillary Clinton. He’ll likely take Wisconsin today, following a recent string of primary victories that came after most observers had dismissed his candidacy as near dead.

Boston Herald

Rosenberg endorses the ‘millionaire’s tax’

This isn’t exactly a shocker: A liberal president of the Massachusetts Senate pushing hard for a constitutional amendment that would allow the state to tax the wealthy at higher rates, as reported by State House New Service’s Colin A. Young in CommonWealth magazine. Still, Senate President Stanley Rosenberg’s declaration yesterday that people “can and should” support a constitutional amendment adding a 4 percent surtax on incomes above $1 million is a big deal, if only because it serves as a sort of a starting-gun blast for what should be a long, bitter debate in coming years over the state’s tax policies.

Commonwealth Magazine

Somewhat surprisingly, General Electric chief Jeff Immelt — whose company is moving to Boston, partly because of Connecticut’s high business taxes – has a come-what-may attitude towards the proposed millionaire-tax question, according to a report by State House New Service’s Andy Metzger.

State House News

The chamber may look more progressive but …

If Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce chief James Rooney thought he would win political brownie points for backing some progressive causes, he ought to think again. The Globe’s Joan Vennochi gives brief praise to the chamber’s attempt to get more involved in social issues, like backing transgender rights. But the chamber and its leader aren’t budging on traditional issues like raising taxes for government services, she notes. “Maybe it’s good news that the Chamber, under Rooney, plans on getting braver about staking out political positions, and maybe it’s not. Activism in itself doesn’t represent change – not if it promotes the same old knee-jerk response to the same old taxing questions.”

Boston Globe

Tribal groundbreaking could alter casino landscape

Brushing away legal threats, the Masphee Wampanoag tribe plans to break snowy ground on its Taunton First Light casino on Tuesday, a move that could have ripple effects across the state’s casino landscape, George Brennan of the Cape Cod Times reports. Tribal leaders say they can have the casino open for business by June of 2017, making it the first full-fledged resort casino operating in the state and putting pressure on the Mass. Gaming Commission, which is weighing whether to license a proposed gaming destination in Brockton.

Washington Post

Rosengren now a proponent of raising interest rates

For years after the 2008 financial crisis, Eric Rosengren, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, was one of those who cautioned against the Fed easing up on its aggressive policies to spur economic growth, fearing it might harm the fragile US economy. But that was then and this is now. Rosengren, a voting member of the Fed’s rate-setting panel, is today saying the economy is strong enough to withstand interest rate hikes, putting him at odds with his former ally on the interest-rate issue, Fed chair Janet Yellen, the Globe’s Deirdre Fernandes reports. Before anyone jumps to the conclusion that Rosengren is shamelessly flip-flopping, it should be noted that Rosengren is known as a stats guy who looks at the economic data – and then makes up his mind. The US economy has dramatically improved and continues to improve, so it’s time to allow interest rates to rise, he’s concluded.

Boston Globe

T gives thumbs up to Quincy development

The MBTA has approved a major mixed-use, transit-oriented development on a parking lot at the North Quincy station, WGBH’s Mike Deehan reports. The development – which includes a new parking garage and nearly 600 housing units – will bring in about $2.3 million a year for the T over the life of the 99-year lease.


GE to donate $50 million to schools, health centers

It may not silence the skeptics. But amid criticism that General Electric got a sweetheart incentive deal to move its headquarters to Boston, GE chief executive Jeff Immelt was in town yesterday to announce, among other things, that his company is donating $50 million to various causes. The donations over the next five years will go to Boston public schools, workforce training programs and local health care centers, the Boston Business Journal’s Greg Ryan reports.

Boston Business Journal

Walsh backs move to $15 minimum wage

With backers of a $15 minimum wage setting their sights on the Bay State after legislative wins in California and New York, Boston Mayor Marty Walsh expressed support for the change, Joshua Miller of the Globe reports. Statewide leaders expressed more caution, with Gov. Baker and House Speaker Robert DeLeo suggesting letting impacts of increases now being phased in – taking the state minimum to $11 an hour next January – take hold before deciding whether to go further.

Boston Globe

Lawmakers want to slow rattlesnake island’s progress

Sen. Eric Lesser, a Belchertown Democrat, is among the lawmakers asking the department of Energy and Environmental Affairs to slow its slither and wait until after a public hearing before deciding whether to move forward with plans to populate a Quabbin Reservoir island with rattlesnakes, O’Ryan Johnson of the Herald reports. A legislative hearing has been set for May 10 on the plan, which wouldn’t be put into motion until next spring anyway.

Boston Herald

Where the solar projects sit and wait

Advocacy groups say more than 500 solar projects worth $617 million statewide are poised for construction but are stalled by state lawmakers’ inability to strike a deal on new solar incentives and net metering limits, Shira Schoenberg of MassLive reports. The vast majority of the projects are located in the central part of the state, according to data released by Vote Solar and the Solar Energy Industries Association, which is hoping to pressure lawmakers into action.


Worcester risks losing affordable units

Affordability restrictions will expire on more than 2,600 housing units in the city of Worcester within four years and city officials are scrambling to extend those restrictions or find replacement housing, Nick Kotsopoulos of the Telegram reports. The city has convened local nonprofits, tenants, affordable housing advocates, the Worcester Housing Authority and state agencies to discuss the issue.

Worcester Telegram

Gas pipeline company eyes Bill Cosby’s driveway

As if Bill Cosby is not facing enough troubles (like being accused by multiple women of sexually assaulting them), the Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co., i.e. Kinder Morgan, wants to use parts of Cosby’s property in Shelburne to access an existing utility right of way so it can complete survey work for its controversial project, Mary Serreze of MassLive reports. The pipeline company has also applied with regulators for the right to use Cosby’s property – which she reports is dotted with signs telling surveyors to stay out – as a launching point for work to horizontally drill beneath the nearby Deerfield River.


Today’s Headlines


Midwood Management Corp. proposes 59-story tower in Boston’s Downtown Crossing – Boston Business Journal

Boston Pride Parade revokes police officer’s marshal invitation – boston.com

General Electric CEO Jeff Immelt on noncompete clauses: ‘Whatever happens, happens’ – boston.com

Bernie Sanders: General Electric is among corporations ‘destroying the moral fabric of this country’ – boston.com

GE Pledges $50M For Local Initiatives Over 5 Years – WBUR

Massachusetts Senate in ‘active discussion’ about $15 minimum wage – MassLive

Massachusetts House Speaker Robert DeLeo’s absence from Greater Boston Labor Council breakfast ‘no loss,’ union leader says – MassLive

Upsizing downtown: Proposal tops Millenium – http://www.bostonherald.com/business/real_estate/2016/04/upsizing_downtown_proposal_tops_millenium

GE pledges $50m in local philanthropy over five years – The Boston Globe – Boston Globe


Trump Finds Support In Mass., But Would Likely Face Long Odds Here In November – WBUR

Mashpee Wampanoag to break ground Tuesday on Taunton casino – Cape Cod Times

Milton lawyer announces run for state representative – Patriot Ledger

MBTA cool to expanded commuter rail to Cape, lower fares for Plymouth – Patriot Ledger

O’Connor leads opponents in spending, fundraising in state Senate seat race – Patriot Ledger

State responds to complaint about fundraiser for Quincy city councilor – Patriot Ledger

MBTA to get $230M in deal for North Quincy parking lot project – Patriot Ledger

Quincy City Council appoints William Harris to Ward 6 seat – Patriot Ledger

18-year-old to head search panel for Webster town administrator – Worcester Telegram

Thousands of Worcester affordable housing units at risk as restrictions expire – Worcester Telegram

Lawmakers request delay in Quabbin Reservoir ‘Rattlesnake Island’ plan – MassLive

Holyoke Councilors to begin debate about Community Preservation Act – MassLive

Where in Massachusetts are stalled solar projects located? – MassLive

General Electric CEO Jeff Immelt on Housatonic River cleanup: ‘We’ve done more dredging than any other company on earth’ – MassLive

Springfield City Council overrides Domenic Sarno’s veto of measure to limit mayor’s powers to grant residency waivers – MassLive

Politicians unleash venom on plan – Boston Herald

Downtown Crossing skyscraper to rival Millennium Tower – Boston Globe

Walsh backs $15 state minimum wage – Boston Globe

Should Brookline give up a car lane for bikes? – Boston Globe

John Oliver mocks Ed Markey for singing in Congress on Last Week Tonight – boston.com

MBTA commuter rail conductors got new iPhones Monday – boston.com

Anti-Abortion Activists Say They Won’t Vote For Trump In November – Boston Magazine

U.S. Rep. Seth Moulton And His Politics of ‘New Politics’ – WGBH

Senate laying groundwork for millionaire’s tax – Commonwealth Magazine

Kinder Morgan wants Bill Cosby’s driveway in Shelburne for temporary gas pipeline access road – MassLive

Supreme Court rules states can count everyone, not just voters, in drawing electoral districts – The Boston Globe – Boston Globe

Donald Trump winning popular vote but Ted Cruz is working hard in the shadow battle for delegate loyalty – Boston Globe


Struggling with women, Donald Trump turns to his wife – Boston Globe

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