Department of Mental Health breakfast
Senate President Stanley Rosenberg attends the Department of Mental Health’s annual citizens legislative breakfast, Springfield Technical Community College, 1 Armory St, Springfield, 9 a.m.
Gov. Charlie Baker holds a closed-door cabinet meeting, Room 360, 9:30 a.m.
Army Cpl. Hauterman funeral
A funeral is held for Army Cpl. Jules Hauterman, a Korean War medic whose battlefield remains were only recently identified by defense officials, with U.S. Rep. Richard Neal attending and with Gov. Baker ordering U.S. and state flags to be flown at half-staff, Blessed Sacrament Church, 1945 Northampton St., Holyoke, 10 a.m.
Budget hearing in Amherst
House and Senate lawmakers wrap up public hearings on the fiscal 2018 budget with a hearing at the State House, Rooms A1 and A2, 10 a.m.
Western Mass. police luncheon
Senate President Stanley Rosenberg attends the Western Massachusetts Chiefs of Police Association’s annual legislative luncheon, Delaney House, 1 Country Club Road, Holyoke, 12 p.m.
Walsh on the air
Mayor Martin Walsh is a scheduled guest on ‘Boston Public Radio,’ WGBH-FM 89.7, 12 p.m.
Healey on the air
Attorney General Maura Healey is a scheduled guest on ‘Boston Public Radio,’ WGBH-FM 89.7, 12:30 p.m.
Sanders at Kennedy Institute
Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders visits the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the U.S. Senate for a talk on the future of American democracy with Boston Globe political reporter James Pindell, Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate, Columbia Point, Boston, 2 p.m.
Sanders at MIT
Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders will speak at MIT about ideas presented in his book ‘Our Revolution: A Future to Believe In’ and participate in a Q&A moderated by Harvard Kennedy School Academic Dean Archon Fung, Kresge Auditorium, MIT, 48 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, 5 p.m.
Kennedy at law banquet
U.S. Rep. Joseph Kennedy III is the keynote speaker at New England Law Boston’s annual Law Day Banquet, Boston Park Plaza Hotel, 50 Park Plaza, Boston, 6 p.m.
U.S. Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders headline an ‘Our Revolution’ rally that also features Raise Up Massachusetts, Jobs Not Jails, and other local activists, Orpheum Theater, One Hamilton Pl., Boston 7:30 p.m.
Moulton channels Mitt on Russia
U.S. Rep. Seth Moulton, a Democrat, is calling Russia the “biggest threat to national security in the short, medium, and long terms and said the only way to combat that threat is if Democrats and Republicans in Washington cooperate,” writes the Globe’s Laura Krantz. Hmmm. Where have we heard this Russian foreign-policy analysis before? From then Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney in 2012, as the New York Times reported at the time.
Of course, Moulton’s comments have to be taken into the context of today’s increasingly serious probes in Washington over Trump and Republican ties to Russia, the latest developments being former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn seeking immunity from “unfair prosecution” (Washington Post) and news that White House officials provided U.S. Rep. Devin Nunes with intelligence reports tied to American spying on Russians (NYT).
U.S. Senator Mitt Romney: It might happen
Speaking of former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney: The Herald’s Joe Battenfeld, following up on published reports that U.S. Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah is willing to step aside if Mitt wants to run for senator in that state, says it’s almost a foregone conclusion that Romney will go for it in Utah, where he now lives: “Romney has said the ‘door is open’ to a possible Senate race, and when Mitt leaves the door open, we here in Massachusetts know what that means: he’s running.” Fyi: Here’s a report on Hatch’s remarks at the Desert News and Washington Examiner, apparently stemming from a Hatch interview with the National Journal, which we can’t verify because it’s behind a firewall.
Globe raps Clark over Baker and commission criticism
A Boston Globe editorial raps U.S. Rep. Katherine Clark for taking swipes at Gov. Charlie Baker’s involvement in a new Trump administration anti-opioids commission, saying she seems “more concerned with playing politics” than dealing with a serious public health issue and comparing the Democrat’s hard-line stance toward Trump to the hard-line stance of Republicans during the Obama years.
Not that Baker isn’t being a little defensive about his commission appointment, as he yesterday “sought to downplay his newfound White House ties,” reports the Herald’s Matt Stout. In fact, Baker seems to be a most reluctant recipient of national attention, as SHNS’s Matt Murphy reports at the Berkshire Eagle.
Trump’s fate nearly sealed: Cambridge mulls impeachment demand
The city of Cambridge will consider a resolution next week demanding that the U.S. House of Representatives launch an impeachment investigation against President Trump, reports Chistela Guerra at the Globe. We’re sure an awed House Speaker Speaker Ryan will drop everything he’s doing and get on it.
Golden Parachute deployed at Mount Wachusett
Another higher-ed retirement package alert: Recently retired Mount Wachusett Community College president Daniel Asquino has departed with one of the richest retirement payouts in the history of the state’s higher education system, Susan Spencer of the Telegram reports. Asquino, who led the campus for 30 years, received a payout of $334,138 for accrued vacation and more than 1,200 unused sick days and also appears to be in line for an annual pension of $215,000. Asquino’s golden parachute is significantly shinier than that of the former Bridgewater State University president whose 2015 cash-out sparked an outcry from Gov. Baker and lawmakers and eventually some reforms to the retirement system.
In shift, ICE arrests Green Card applicants in Lawrence
Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents arrested five people in Lawrence when they showed up for appointments at the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services offices, potentially signaling a shift in immigration-enforcement priorities and tactics, Shannon Dooling of WBUR reports. An attorney for one of those detained said his client had an interview scheduled for her Green Card application and advocates say the arrests most definitely signal a shift in ICE tactics.
Rep. DuBois’s PayPal request draws complaint
The conservative Massachusetts Fiscal Alliance is requesting that the state campaign finance agency review state Rep. Michelle DuBois’s request for PayPal donations following her controversial Facebook post about an imminent ICE raid that never occurred in Brockton, reports Matt McDonald at New Boston Post. The Enterprisehas more on the PayPal controversy and fundraising. In addition, DuBois tells the Enterprise in a separate story that she’s proud of herself and her immigration-raid actions.
State agency stripped of broadband grant funds
First, the private company that operates the state-owned high-speed broadband network in western Massachusetts filed for bankruptcy. Now the Baker administration has taken away $20 million in grant-making authority from the quasi-state agency handling broadband issues in the central and western portions of Massachusetts, reports Mary Serreze at MassLive.
Suffolk Downs and thorough-bred racing ride into the sporting sunset
File under ‘end of an era’: The Massachusetts Gaming Commission yesterday gave its official approval to the sale of the Suffolk Downs horse track to a development affiliate of the HYM Investment Group, ending decades of the once hugely popular sport of thoroughbred horse racing in the Boston area, as SHNS reports at the BBJ.
As a Herald editorial put it this morning: “How sad for those who will never know the thrill of watching a thoroughbred in full gallop on a fine spring day.” To appreciate how popular horse racing used to be here and elsewhere, definitely read Lauren Hillenbrand’s gem of a book “Seabiscuit,” who, as legend has it, was first discovered at Suffolk Downs.
No lions and tigers and bears, oh my
Thoroughbred racing is gone in Boston – and maybe soon circus animals as well. From Christian Wade at the Gloucester Times: “Amid pressure from animal welfare groups, state lawmakers want to ban the use of elephants, big cats and other exotic animals for entertainment purposes. One proposal with bipartisan support on Beacon Hill effectively outlaws traveling circuses and other wild animal performances, and it slaps hefty fines on violators.” The bill, whose primary sponsor is Senate Minority Leader Bruce Tarr, specifically targets “lions, tigers and other big cats, primates, elephants, rhinos, hippopotamuses, giraffes, bears, hyenas and alligators,” Wade writes.
Bernie’s combination political barnstorming and book tour
In case you didn’t notice in the ‘Happening Today’ section above, U.S Sen. Bernie Sanders sweeps into town today “like a rock star in deep-blue Kennedy Massachusetts,” says Erin O’Brien, chair of the political science department at UMass-Boston, according to a report by the Globe’s Akilah Johnson. And it’s true. His star attraction is undeniable. But his political barnstorming is also about selling books, as Sanders openly touts “Our Revolution” today at MIT, as he has in other book-tour visits to cities such as Chicago and Seattle. Just pointing it out.
We got you covered: State to pick up tab for advanced-placement tests
From SHNS’s Katie Lanna at Wicked Local: “The state will pick up the tab for low-income students taking Advanced Placement exams in science, technology, engineering and math subjects this year after the federal government stopped providing dedicated funding.” The total allocation is about $326,000.
VW’s ‘defeat device’ leads to big $20M win for Massachusetts
The state will haul in $20 million from an overall $157 million settlement with Volkwagon Group over its illegal installation of “defeat device” software meant to thwart tough auto emissions standards, reports Don Seiffert at the BBJ. Attorney General Maura Healey is calling it the largest civil penalty ever obtained in an environmental enforcement case brought by the Bay State, Seiffert writes.
Springfield may see a political free-for-all for council seat held by Bud Williams
With state Representative and Springfield City Councilor Bud Williams not expected to seek re-election to his city post this year, there’s a lot of political jockeying going on in Springfield over a potentially rare open at-large seat on the council, reports Matt Szafranski at Western Massachusetts Politics and Insight.
Khan backs off claims of being targeted by airport officials
From Shira Schoenberg at MassLIve: “Khizr Khan, the Gold Star father who got into a high-profile feud with President Donald Trump, on Thursday appeared to walk back his earlier comments that his travel privileges were being reviewed by U.S. officials. In an interview with The Republican/MassLive.com, Khan said he was not worried that he would not be allowed to enter the United States. Rather, he chose not to travel because he was worried he would have to provide access to his personal phone or laptop to border officials.”
Never a dull moment with Lock ‘em up Hodgson
The Globe’s Kevin Cullen chronicles the latest antics of the never dull Tom “Lock’em Up” Hodgson,” whose Bristol County jail will soon be filled with all sorts of characters if he has his way.
Baker still working on the sequel details to Patrick’s $1B biotech initiative
Gov. Charlie Baker told those gathered at a MassBio conference that he fully backs the state’s vibrant life-sciences industry. But he didn’t give many details about what the administration plans to do after the expiration next year of former Gov. Deval Patrick’s landmark $1 billion, 10-year initiative to boost the life-science sector, reports Max Stendahl at the BBJ. Baker made clear the initiative will continue in some form.
Critics slam hospital’s psychiatric bed decrease in Worcester
Nurses and community advocates for the mentally ill were among those to blast a proposal by UMass Memorial Hospital to reduce the number of psychiatric patient beds at its Worcester facility, Tom Quinn of Worcester Magazine reports. The Department of Public Health is expected to rule next month on the plan that would set aside13 beds now used for the mentally ill for use by medical-surgical patients. The Worcester City Council has taken a stance against the move.
Wynn clears the decks in Everett
Wynn Resorts has spent close to $20 million to purchase properties near the under-construction Wynn Boston Harbor casino in Everett, often paying well above assessed value for homes and businesses that will be razed to create a buffer around the $2.4 billion resort, Mark Micheli of the Globe reports. A Wynn spokesman says the purchases will help “make the entry to our resort spectacular,” while some city officials worry about the impact on the once tight-knit neighborhood and the displacement of tenants.
Sunday public affairs TV
Keller at Large, WBZ-TV Channel 4, 8:30 a.m. This week’s guest: University of Massachusetts president Marty Meheen, who discusses the financial woes at UMass-Boston and the future of system-wide funding with host Jon Keller.
This is New England, NBC Boston Channel 10, 9:30 a.m. With host Phil Lipof, this week’s topics: Autism Awareness Month and #LightitUpBlue.
This Week in Business, NECN, 10 a.m. MBTA General Manager Brian Shortsleeve on the latest efforts to improve T services; Cape Cod Chamber of Commerce CEO Wendy Northcross on the upcoming summer tourism season; and BBJ editor Doug Banks on some of the top business stories of the week.
CEO Corner, NEC, 10:30 a.m. The business of family business and its unique challenges, with Paul and David Karofsk, father and son, who run the Transition Consulting Group, as well David and Jacob Grossman, co-presidents of Grossman Properties.
On the Record, WCVB-TV Channel 5, 11 a.m. This week’s guest: House Speaker Robert DeLeo, who talks with anchor Ed Harding and co-anchor Janet Wu.
CityLine, WCVB-TV Channel 5, 12 p.m. With host Karen Holmes Ward, this week’s focus: Spring Things: Eats & Outings .
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