Happening Today

Matt Damon to speak at MIT

Actor and filmmaker Matt Damon, who starred as a genius MIT janitor in “Good Will Hunting,” will be the commencement speaker at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Killian Court, Cambridge, 10 a.m.

Pride flag raising

Boston officials and state Auditor Suzanne Bump will gather to raise the rainbow flag over City Hall in a Boston Pride Month kickoff event, City Hall Plaza, Boston, 11 a.m.

Governor to sign public records bill

Gov. Charlie Baker signs into law the new “Act to improve public records,” office of governor, State House Room 360, 12 p.m.

Tom Brady, Baker to help Best Buddies Football Challenge

Gov. Baker attends the Best Buddies Tom Brady Football Challenge, a fundraiser for the nonprofit dedicated to helping those with intellectual and developmental disabilities; Pats quarterback Tom Brady will be among those at the event, Harvard Stadium, 79 N. Harvard St., Allston, 5:30 p.m.

Today’s Stories

Marty’s mounting union woes

Mayor Marty Walsh, whose administration is the target of a fed probe into alleged strong-arm tactics used by union and city officials to secure lucrative labor contracts, can’t catch a break these days. The latest “drip, drip, drip” emanating from City Hall: A top Walsh adviser kept advocating for his former bosses at the AFL-CIO even after he assumed a plum City Hall post, reports Jack Encarnacao of the Herald, citing the latest batch of released emails. 

Meanwhile, Kenneth Brissette, Walsh’s former tourism chief who was indicted for allegedly pressuring music festival organizers to hire union labor, prepared “talking points” for Walsh for a meeting with IndyCar executives that lauded local promoters for hiring key Walsh campaign aides and promised to “expeditiously” secure city permits and licenses, the Herald’s Joe Battenfeld writes.  

It always seems to come back to hirings and city permits.

Jury: Conley’s DA office didn’t discriminate against former prosecutor

Suffolk County District Attorney Dan Conley has already experienced the public embarrassment of being hauled into court to defend his office against charges it discriminated against a former prosecutor, who claims she was paid less than her male counterparts. But at least Conley won’t be facing total humiliation and defeat: A federal grand jury yesterday unanimously rejected Christina Corda’s claims that her termination from Conley’s office was based on her complaints of pay discrimination, the Globe’s Milton Valencia reports. During trial testimony, Conley countered that Corda was fired after she launched into an “alcohol-fueled, expletive-laden outburst at a supervisor during a going-away party for a colleague,” as Valencia summarizes it.

Boston Globe

NPR’s ‘All Things Considered’ is doomed

If Boston is anything, it’s definitely a public-radio town. So pay attention all you NPR devotees: Slate’s Steve Lickteig, who used to executive produce ‘Weekend All Things Considered,’ thinks shows like ‘Morning Edition,’ ‘All Things Considered’ and other “curated magazine shows,” including those on ESPN’s SportsCenter, are effectively doomed, thanks to new on-demand technologies and changing listening habits:

“The audience for those shows is aging and declining, and news of all kinds is available at a pace that was unthinkable even 10 years ago. And as (Keith) Olbermann pointed out, the desire for the ‘leisurely, well-done’ show is very much on the wane. There’s almost nothing more leisurely and well-done than an NPR news magazine.”


Gloucester marks anniversary of ‘Angel’ program for addicts

On the one-year anniversary of the launch of its nationally lauded Angel Initiative program, which diverts addicts away from the criminal justice system and toward treatment, the city of Gloucester says it has helped 450 people in that time, Jessica Bartlett of the Boston Business Journal reports. Since the launch, 120 departments in other cities nationwide have followed Gloucester’s lead and Gloucester handles 20 to 30 cases monthly, down from 60 a month at the program’s peak.


And New Bedford develops unique approach toward panhandlers

Three New Bedford organizations—including the city’s police union and the local chamber of commerce—have signed onto a plan to hire panhandlers to carry sign boards for pay, Curt Brown of the Standard-Times reports. Among other things, the New Bedford Police Union will use the approach to promote an upcoming family festival. While the jobs are not high-paying, Mayor Jon Mitchell says they could be a step in the right direction: “Working for pay is better than begging for money.”


Barney versus Bernie

How did we miss this one? Rachelle Cohen of the Herald yesterday chronicled the latest in the ongoing feud between former U.S. Rep. Barney Frank and presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, who has dredged up decades-old grudges against Frank. From Cohen: “Oh what a delicious little squabble has developed in the lead-up to the Democratic National Convention.”

Boston Herald

UMass workers have banked 1 million days of unused sick time

Employees at the University of Massachusetts have accumulated nearly 1 million days of unused sick time that they can cash in after they retire, reports Craig Douglas of the Boston Business Journal. Put another way: That’s the equivalent of 3,606 years’ worth of unused sick time. Yes, we’re talking millenniums.


Meanwhile, UMass Boston eyes adjunct prof cuts to balance budget

The University of Massachusetts Boston is trying to plug a budget deficit by informing about 400 adjunct professors that their contracts may not be renewed this autumn, reports the Globe’s Laura Krantz. Some complain the university is targeting its lowest-paid teaching staff as a way to save money. We have a suggestion: How about looking at the university’s unused sick-time and other benefits for full-time administrative workers who don’t teach? Just an idea that pops to mind.

Boston Globe

Inspector General slams $500,000 buyback claim

And, yes, here’s one more public-employee buyback item: Inspector General Glenn Cuhna says a retiring South Hadley Electric Light Department employee’s claim that he is entitled to nearly $500,000 in unused vacation and sick time pay would represent “a waste of public funds,” Bob McGovern of the Herald reports. Cunha estimates Wayne Doerpholz is entitled to sell back $15,000 worth of vacation time—not the $223,000 he has requested—and none of the $247,000 worth of untapped sick pay he is seeking.

Boston Herald

Cities defend water testing procedures after report by U.K. media outlet

Officials in Boston, Springfield and Worcester all moved to assuage public concerns after a report from the Guardian listed them among 33 U.S. cities that employed testing methods similar to those used in Flint, Michigan, where widespread lead contamination was covered up for years, Nik DeCosta-Klipa of Boston.com reports. An MWRA spokesperson said that agency has always followed EPA testing guidelines. 

In Springfield, meanwhile, the executive director of the city’s water and sewer commission tells MassLive’s Peter Goonan that the the Guardian article was “alarmist and misleading. Springfield is nothing like Flint,” said Joshua Schimmel. 

And in Worcester, Tom Quinn of Worcester Magazine reports that the city maintains it has adhered to EPA testing procedures “word for word.”

State says audio of Brewster moderator not public

The state’s supervisor of public records has ruled that an audio tape of comments made by the Brewster town moderator should not be released because they could violate the privacy of two voters the moderator allegedly insulted, KC Myers of the Cape Cod Times reports. The comments were captured after the end of a November special town meeting.

Cape Cod Times

Boat traffic at issue in Somerville’s Wynn permit appeal

Attorneys for Wynn Boston Harbor and the city of Somerville sparred over how many boats will travel to and from the planned Everett casino as a hearing into the city’s appeal of the casino’s key environmental permit began, Jordan Graham of the Herald reports. Somerville’s hired expert argued that 10 percent of all the boaters in New England would try to dock at the casino, a number the casino’s lawyers called absurdly high.

Boston Herald

Pot patients in limbo

The legal status of more than 5,000 patients certified to receive medical marijuana is up in the air after the state suspended the medical license of the doctor who cleared them to enter the program, Kay Lazar and Felice J. Freyer of the Globe report. The Board of Registration in Medicine says Dr. John Nadolny of Canna Care Docs failed to diagnose patients with one of the conditions specified in the state’s medical marijuana laws.

Boston Globe

Representative (and very proud uncle) keeps his niece’s White House dream alive

Alena Mulhern of Kingston has a modest dream: She wants to be president of the United States of America when she grows up. But the 11-year-old was born in China and adopted when she was 10 months old, so she’s not considered a natural born citizen – a constitutional qualification to run for president. Now her uncle, Rep. Josh Cutler, a Democrat from Duxbury, is stepping in to help his niece, by pushing a resolution urging Congress to enact legislation that would redefine natural born citizens to include foreign-born adopted children who meet existing conditions under the Child Citizenship Act, reports Antonio Caban of State House News Service. “We tell kids when they’re little you can be anything you want to be when you grow up, and some kids want to be astronauts, cab drivers or plumbers,” said Cutler. “She wants to be president, and we want to see her dreams be able to be alive.”

SHNS (pay wall)

Sunday public affairs TV

Keller at Large, WBZ TV Channel 4, 8:30 a.m. Gov. Charlie Baker talks about his evolution on the transgender rights bill, the state of the local economy, the “millionaire’s tax,” and his plans to push for the death penalty for cop killers.

DC Dialogue, NECN, 10 a.m. Guest Thomas Glynn, Massport’s CEO, talks about TSA lines, the growth of the Cruiseport, travel warnings and helipad plans; Discover New England executive director Lori Harnois talks about the New England summer travel and tourism season; Jim Brett, New England Council CEO, weighs in on presidential politics.

On the Record, WCVB Channel 5, 11 a.m. Guest: U.S. Rep. Katherine Clark, Democrat from Massachusetts.

This Week in Business, NECN, 11 a.m. Matt Arrants, executive vice president of the Pinnacle Advisory Group, gives an update on the Boston-Cambridge hotel and lodging industry; Burst Founder and CEO Bryant McBride on the Boston-based startup bringing user generated content to viewers and customers; Boston Business Journal editor Doug Banks discusses some of the top business stories of the week.

CEO Corner, NECN 11:30 a.m. Boston restaurant bigwig Nick Varano, owner of the Varano Group, talks about his restaurants, plans for the future and how he gets all those A-listers to come his eateries.

Today’s Headlines


The battle to rezone Jamaica Plain isn’t over yet – Boston Globe

Wynn tries to sink boat trip data on casino – Boston Herald

Boston City Hall releases new diversity data – WGBH

Former DEP head calls Wynn DEP permit ‘a clear outlier’ – Boston Globe

Federal jury rejects discrimination complaint against Suffolk DA – Boston Globe

Only 10 boat slips at Wynn casino – CommonWealth Magazine


‘Springfield is nothing like Flint’ : Water system executive denies ‘cheat’ on lead testing – MassLive

Trouble for the Baker/Walsh bromance? – Boston Magazine

City cites change in lead testing guidelines in response to Guardian investigation – Worcester Magazine

‘Casino lab’ in Taunton will provide hands-on training for dealers – Taunton Gazette

Hire-the-panhandler movement growing in New Bedford – Standard-Times

Gloucester police mark one year since launch of Angel program – WBUR

Vote on Muslim cemetery in Dudley planned for next week – Telegram & Gazette

State IG challenges official’s nearly $500K buyback push – Boston Herald

Marijuana patients in limbo as doctor’s license is suspended – Boston Globe


Trump says judge is biased because of ‘Mexican heritage’ – Boston Globe

Hillary Clinton wants you to fear a Trump presidency – Boston Globe

If Elizabeth Warren is VP, Charlie Baker may play kingmaker – Boston Globe

How to Contact MASSterList

Send tips to Matt Murphy: Editor@MASSterList.com. For advertising inquiries and job board postings, please contact Dylan Rossiter: Publisher@MASSterList.com or (857) 370-1156. Follow @MASSterList on Twitter.