Happening Today

Baker to Minnesota

Traveling from California to Minnesota, Gov. Charlie Baker attends a memorial service for a former colleague, on the last leg of his five-day trip primarily focused on the BIO International Convention.

Walsh in Florida

Boston Mayor Martin Walsh travels to Miami Beach, Fla. to participate in the U.S. Conference of Mayors’ 85th annual meeting, Fontainebleau Hotel, Miami Beach, Fla.

National Endowment for the Arts chair

National Endowment for the Arts chair Jane Chu visits the Barrington Stage Company, joined by Sen. Adam Hinds and Rep. Tricia Farley-Bouvier, 122 North St., Pittsfield, 9:30 a.m.

Massachusetts +6

The Massachusetts 6+ plans a sit-in at Gov. Charlie Baker’s office to request an independent investigation into alleged abuses of policies at the Department of Correction, State House, 12 p.m.

Worcester airport milestone

Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito, Worcester Mayor Joseph Petty and Massport CEO Tom Glynn participate in Worcester Regional Airport’s 400,000th Passenger Milestone Celebration, 375 Airport Dr., Worcester, 1 p.m.

Today’s Stories

Baker warns of health-care hit if Senate GOP plan is passed

Gov. Charlie Baker is warning that the Senate Republican health-care plan could punch a huge hole in state finances if it’s ever passed, reports the Associated Press at WBUR and Priyanka Dayal McCluskey at the Globe. No numbers yet. But it’s likely it will be in the hundreds of millions of dollars, due the Senate’s proposed huge cuts in Medicaid. The Globe’s Evan Horowitz notes that the Senate’s Medicaid reductions “reach far deeper than anything envisioned by House Republicans.”

The Senate’s ‘Wicked Witch of the West’ health bill

How bad is the Senate Republican health-care bill in the view of Democrats? U.S. Rep. Ed Markey says the Senate legislation is worse, if that’s possible, than the House bill, reports Shannon Young at MassLive. “Nothing changes the fact that this undemocratic, secretive process has resulted in legislation that is so mean-spirited it would make the Wicked Witch of the West cringe,” Markey said. More reactions from U.S. Rep. Richard Neal (MassLive) and U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (also MassLive). 


Shocking: Witnesses afraid to testify in Teamsters ‘Top Chef’ case

We’ll give you one guess which Teamsters local this may involve. From Bob McGovern at the Herald: “Federal prosecutors don’t want to disclose the names of witnesses who may testify against Teamsters accused of extorting producers of the reality show ‘Top Chef,’ arguing that some are scared and can’t be found. ‘Some of our witnesses we can’t even locate,’ Assistant U.S. Attorney Laura Kaplan said. ‘They are afraid. They move. They change professions.’”

Boston Herald

Post Senate vote, lawmakers angling to get pot bill to Baker by next Friday

Considering how far apart the House and Senate are in their respective marijuana-regulation bills, getting a bill to Gov. Charlie Baker’s desk by next Friday seems rather aggressive and optimistic. But there’s a sense — detectable at least here – that legislative leaders and conference committee members already know what they’re going to do and need to get done, i.e. splitting the differences down the middle, with the House, for instance, coming down eight points on the tax rate and the Senate going up eight points, to arrive at, voila, 20 percent, etc. etc. It’s more difficult than that, of course. But proceedings this week seemed too calm, too orchestrated, and we’re just going with a hunch. 

The Globe’s Jim O’Sullivan and the Associated Press at the Herald have more on the Senate’s approval of its own pot bill yesterday.

Police on lookout for fentanyl-laced pot

This is sick. Police agencies in the Merrimack Valley say they are concerned that marijuana laced with the powerful opioid fentanyl could soon show up in the area, Breanna Edelstein and Lisa Kashinsky of the Eagle-Tribune report. An Ohio coroner announced this week that the drug mix showed up in autopsies and officials say it may only be a matter of time before the deadly combo spreads further.

Eagle Tribune

Santa Anita Park owner in ‘very, very preliminary’ talks over Bay State horse track

The Stronach Group, owner of the famed Santa Anita Park and Pimlico Race Course, is “very, very early in preliminary discussions” about bringing back horse racing to Massachusetts, with a company official saying they’ve talked with the owner of the former Raynham dog-track and with state gaming officials, reports Michael Norton at SHNS. File under: We’ll believe it when we see it.

SHNS (pay wall)

Again? Seth et gang plot coup against Pelosi

One day U.S. Rep. Seth Moulton and his fellow Dem conspirators, who late last year plotted to oust Democratic House leader Nancy Pelosi, will actually see Pelosi go. But Pelosi and her allies sure sound confident she’s not going anywhere soon, based on reports by Jaclyn Reiss at the Globe and Politico on Seth et gang’s latest coup attempt, post-Georgia election. Question: Where’s U.S. Rep. Stephen Lynch in this mix? He took part in last year’s failed coup. Hello? Steve?

Tito raised only $250 over a two-week period

He could have made $250 by running a lemonade stand – probably more. The Globe’s Meghan Irons has the details on Boston mayoral candidate Tito Jackson’s overall dismal fundraising season.

Boston Globe

‘Sickened by sight of Donald Trump not good enough reason for lawsuit’

We’re not making this up (nor is Adam Gaffin at Universal Hub): “A federal judge today tossed a Plymouth woman’s suit against Donald Trump for allegedly causing her great anguish, ruling, essentially, come on now.” She alleged: “I have experienced loss of enjoyment of life, I have been tormented by the thought of him, as well as, sight and the sound of his voice frightens me, I am unable to sleep, focus or believe in a secure future for myself and daughter.”

Universal Hub

It really happened: A dummy riding with a dummy in the HOV lane

Boston Magazine’s Spencer Buell has the details on a driver who had a hoodie-wearing mannequin riding next time him in the I-93 HOV lane in Charlestown. The State Police weren’t fooled. 


Fishermen can’t catch a break: Now shellfish are threatened

With marine fisheries increasingly regulated and/or depleted of species, local fishermen, particularly those in New Bedford, have managed to survive, and even thrive, by hauling in lucrative shellfish. But now shellfish are threatened by ‘ocean acidification’ – and Massachusetts is behind other states in responding to the threat, reports the New England Center for Investigative Reporting’s Chris Burrell at WGBH.


Brilliant! A solar-paneled Mexican border wall

This is sure to unite environmentalists and Tea Party members, courtesy of Donald Trump, who’s pushing for an environmentally friendly border wall, reports Business Insider, which has design sketches of the climate-conscious wonder.

Business Insider

Pot shop hypocrisy

CommonWealth’s Natasha Ishak has a nice catch: Six communities that voted for legalizing marijuana last fall have since voted to bar pot shops in their towns. Which leads to the question: So where do they expect to buy their legalized pot? Some people, including Mayor Marty Walsh and activists, worry inner-city neighborhoods may end up being the dumping grounds for pot shops frequented by suburbanites.


Setti speaks out of both sides of his mouth

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Setti Warren is running as a liberal’s liberal (supporting single-payer health, free college tuition, the millionaire’s tax and just about everything else on Bernie Sanders’s wish list), then turns around yesterday in support of moderate Democrat Seth Moulton’s call for a party leadership change and a shift to the center emphasizing jobs and economic growth. What’s the old saying about trying to be all things to all people?

SHNS (pay wall)

Retired SJC Justice Spina urges appointment of western Mass. resident to high court

Retired Supreme Judicial Court Judge Francis X. Spina is the latest person urging Gov. Charlie Baker to appoint someone from western Massachusetts to the state’s highest court, reports Buffy Spencer at MassLive. Lawmakers, activists and others have been outspoken in their calls for western representation on the bench after Justice Geraldine Hines retires later this year.


Springfield mayor halts contract talks over ‘ugly’ social-media comments

Someone may need to fill Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno in on how social media works. From Peter Goonan at MassLive: “Mayor Domenic J. Sarno says he has suspended contract talks with the city’s district fire chiefs until there is a plan to deal with ‘ugly’ comments on social media allegedly tied to two fire supervisors. Sarno’s comments came after the Facebook comments were revealed during a City Council meeting Monday night.”


Worcester mulls micro-TIFs

Worcester officials are seeking to craft a plan that would extend the benefits of tax increment financing—TIF—deals to mom-and-pop stores and other small businesses, Bill Shaner of Worcester Magazine reports. 

Worcester Magazine

The TV News blues

It’s no surprise that local TV news ratings are down. But the Herald’s Jessica Heslam has the latest numbers showing the rapid decline that’s forcing the five stations to compete for a shrinking audience.

Boston Herald

Sunday public affairs TV

Keller at Large, WBZ-TV Channel 4, 8:30 a.m. Guest: Gov. Charlie Baker, who discusses his reelection plans, the ‘millionaire’s tax’ and other issues, in the second part of a recent interview with host Jon Keller.

This is New England, NBC Boston, Channel 10. With host Latoyia Edwards, this week’s focus: Wedding Season in New England.  

This Week in Business, NECN 10 a.m. Ann Klee, General Electric vice president, and Angus Leary, Suffolk Construction general manager and president, talk about the plans for new GE Innovation Point; Boston Business Journal editor Doug Banks reviews Senate health care bill, Uber CEO changes,  Gov. Charlie Baker’s $500M for life sciences and other issues    

CEO Corner, NECN, 10:30 a.m.  State Street chairman and CEO Joseph Hooley discusses the company’s 225th anniversary and other business issues.

On The Record, WCVB-TV Channel 5, 11 a.m. Guest: Marty Meheen, president of the University of Massachusetts, who talks 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: Youth at Work.

Postgres Vision 2017

Postgres Vision

Champions of Mentoring

Mass Mentoring Partnership

USA-Europe Shared Services Summit and Awards

Boston Business Journal

Today’s Headlines


Sail Boston’s tall ships festival exceeds expectations, draws estimated 3-4 million visitors to Boston Harbor – MassLive

Prosecutors say witnesses afraid in Teamsters case – Boston Herald

Restaurant owners hacked off over liquor license proposal – Boston Herald

Citing safety, MIT disbands its oldest, oddest dorm – WBUR


About-face on marijuana – CommonWealth Magazine

Western Mass. town to learn Hulu plans for Stephen King series – MassLive

Worcester teachers, school board members open to summer contract talks – Telegram & Gazette

Framingham: Baystone proposes 240 apartments at Mt. Wayne Plaza – MetroWest Daily News

Narcan to be made available in city buildings – Gloucester Times

Police fear arrival of fentanyl-laced pot – Eagle-Tribune


Trump: ‘I did not make and do not have recordings of Comey’ – NPR

Shifting funds from poor to rich is key part of Senate health bill – New York Times

The anti-innovation presidency – Politico

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