House criminal-justice bill, T Control Board, Galvin on Tuesday elections
— The House Ways and Means Committee is expected on Monday to release a criminal justice reform bill.
— The Supreme Judicial Court will hear five cases today, John Adams Courthouse, Courtroom One, Second Floor, Pemberton Square, Boston, 9 a.m.
— Department of Public Utilities holds an evidentiary hearing on the petition of Eversource Energy to construct a controversial transmission line in Sudbury, Hudson, Stow and Marlborough, Hearing Room A, One South Station – 5th Floor, Boston, 10 a.m.
— Attorney General Maura Healey will join Carlos and Mélida Arredondo of the Arrendondo Family Foundation in participating in the 22 Pushup Challenge to raise awareness around military veteran suicides, Leverett Saltonstall Building, Conference Room B and C, 100 Cambridge St., Boston, 10 a.m.
— Gov. Charlie Baker visits Mark’s Deli to campaign for Republican Shaun Toohey, a candidate in Tuesday’s special House election to fill the 3rd Essex District seat formerly held by Brian Dempsey, Mark’s Deli, 2 Railroad Square, Haverhill, 10 a.m.
— MassDOT and the Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs hold the third of four joint listening sessions about reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the transportation sector, Student Union – Cape Cod Lounge, UMass Amherst, 280 Hicks Way, Amherst, 11 a.m.
— Secretary of State William Galvin holds a pre-election media availability to discuss voter-turnout outlook and other issues ahead of Tuesday’s elections, Room 116, State House, 11 a.m.
— A task force convened by the Senate to help the state’s retail sector meets to hear expert opinions on the status of the retail industry in Massachusetts, Room 428, 11 a.m.
— The MBTA Fiscal and Management Control Board plans to discuss the integrated vehicle and facility maintenance plan, ridership, and winter preparedness, 10 Park Plaza, Transportation Board Room, Boston, 12 p.m.
— The State Library’s monthly author talk features journalist Stephen Kinzer on his latest book ‘The True Flag: Theodore Roosevelt, Mark Twain, and the Birth of American Empire,’ Room 341, 12 p.m.
— U.S. Rep. Joseph Kennedy III participates in a panel discussion on the importance of civil legal aid at Harvard Law School, with U.S. Rep. Susan Brooks also participating, Harvard Law School, Langdell Hall 225 Vorenberg Classroom, 1545 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, 12 p.m.
— Joint Committee on Telecommunications, Utilities and Energy holds a hearing on 25 bills dealing with energy efficiency and environmental justice, including legislation calling for the ‘prompt decommissioning’ of Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station, Room B-1, 1 p.m.
— Gov. Charlie Baker and legislative leaders from both parties hold their semi-regular private meeting, House speaker’s office, 2 p.m.
— Gov. Charlie Baker joins Secretary of Public Safety and Security Daniel Bennett to re-establish the Governor’s Task Force on Hate Crimes and swear-in task force members., Room 360, 4 p.m.
— Chris Matthews, the anchor of MSNBC’s ‘Hardball with Chris Matthews,’ visits the John F. Kennedy Jr. Presidential Library and Museum to discuss his new book, ‘Bobby Kennedy: A Raging Spirit,’ JFK Library, Columbia Point, Boston, 6 p.m.
— Massachusetts Association of Minority Law Enforcement Officers leaders, the Black Economic Justice Institute, Healing Our Land and Boston Black Ministers United for Change host a get-out-the-vote prayer rally, 670 Washington St., Dorchester, 7 p.m.
— Cambridge Community Foundation and Harvard Book Store host Khizr Khan, a Gold Star father and Muslim, for a discussion of his new book ‘An American Family,’ First Parish Church, 1446 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, 7 p.m.
— MSNBC host Chris Matthews talks about his new book ‘Bobby Kennedy: A Raging Spirit,’ on ‘Greater Boston,’ WGBH-TV Ch. 2, 7 p.m.
Now it’s Republicans trying to tax college endowments funds …
For years, local colleges and universities have fended off Democratic attempts on Beacon Hill to tax their endowment funds. Now local colleges and universities are fending off a Republican attempt to tax their endowment funds under the new tax-cut plan unveiled last week by GOP lawmakers. The Globe’s Deirdre Fernandes and the BBJ’s Mex Stendahl report that freaked out college officials are mobilizing fast to block the House move.
The Chronicle of Higher Education lists the 140 higher-ed institutions across the country that would get whacked under the Republican proposal – and it includes just about every major college and university in Massachusetts: Harvard, MIT, Tufts, Boston College, BU, Brandeis, Williams, Amherst, Wellesley and others. Republicans are putting a spin on the move that may resonate with many people, i.e., that college administrators have used their endowment funds to mostly expand their ranks and fatten their salaries, not to reduce tuition costs for students and parents.
SJC to hear case on student-suicides liability
Speaking of colleges and universities, from Matt Stendahl at the BBJ: “Can colleges and universities be held legally liable when one of their students commits suicide? That will be the question before the state’s Supreme Judicial Court on Tuesday, when lawyers for MIT will seek to convince a panel of judges that the school had no duty to prevent a doctoral student from killing himself in 2009. The outcome of the case, which was filed in 2011 by the family of Han Duy Nguyen and dismissed by a lower court last year, could influence how colleges and universities in Massachusetts approach their relationships with students who may be at risk of suicide.
Warren tangled in her rigging
U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren spent much of last Friday and the weekend under attack and counter-attacking over her recent contention that last year’s Democratic presidential primary was ‘rigged’ in Hillary Clinton’s favor. The Globe’s Annie Linskey and Victoria McGane aren’t buying it, noting her ‘rigged’ remark had more to do with the 2020 presidential election than the 2016 election, i.e. Warren, who endorsed Hillary Clinton last year and who is now eying a potential presidential bid in two years, is trying to get on the nice side of progressive Bernie backers who have long contended that Clinton et gang had indeed rigged the primary process. Of course, President Donald Trump couldn’t resist taking shots at ‘Pocahontas’ and mischievously called for an investigation of the ‘rigged’ allegations, reports Matt Stout and Jordan Graham at the Herald. Warren struck back hard – and largely effectively – against the president. But the damage was already done. SHNS’s Colin A. Young and Matt Murphy at the Telegram have more on the rigged debacle.
Last-minute politicking, last-minute finger-pointing over turnout in Boston …
Boston’s two main mayoral candidates – incumbent Marty Walsh and former city councilor Tito Jackson – were busy over the weekend trying to drum up last-minute support, and maybe a little excitement, in advance of tomorrow’s election in Boston. But with Walsh way ahead in the polls, turnout tomorrow is expected to be low, super low, as in 23-percent low. As Michael Levenson at the Globe writes: “Blame the media. Blame millennials. Blame the president. Everyone is looking for a culprit to fault for what official forecasters predict could be a record low turnout in Tuesday’s mayoral and City Council elections.”
Joyce Ferriabough Bolling at the Herald is despondent about the expected dismal turnout tomorrow. “It makes me wonder about our country’s future when our young people are not engaged, particularly in communities of color,” she writes. Here’s more from the Globe on the last-weekend campaigning in Boston. The Herald also has a photo gallery of the two mayoral candidates on the campaign trail.
But turnout is expected to be heavy in Framingham …
Framingham’s recent switch from town to city government – and the ensuing first-ever mayoral and city council elections – could lead to as many as half of Framingham’s roughly 40,000 registered voters casting ballots tomorrow, reports Jim Haddadin at MetroWest Daily News. The Globe’s Danny McDonald takes a look at the mayoral contest between Yvonne Spicer, a 55-year-old Museum of Science vice president and Town Meeting member, and John Stefanini, a 53-year-old attorney and former selectman and state representative.
In Attleboro, five candidates admit to run-ins with the law
Is this an election or the police blotter? Turnout is expected to be heavy Tuesday in Attleboro, where over the weekend a fifth candidate on the ballot acknowledged a past run-in with police, George Rhodes of the Sun-Chronicle reports. At-large city council candidate Seth Bai admitted to a DUI arrest five years ago after the newspaper called him to confirm a tip.
Local races to keep an eye on tomorrow …
Besides Boston, Framingham and Attleboro, keep an eye on key races in Lawrence, Lynn, Newton and Salem tomorrow, all of which of have interesting and sometimes heated mayoral contests. The biggie is between Mayor Daniel Rivera and former Mayor Willie Lantigua in Lawrence. The Globe’s John Hilliard and the Associated Press at the Herald have details on the races. The Globe’s Yvonne Abraham dearly wishes there was a contested election in Everett, where she writes of that city’s mayor: “Carlo DeMaria has been so utterly untouched by multiple claims that he sexually harassed women that he is not only running for reelection Tuesday, but running unopposed.”
Rev. Eugene Rivers: That’s right. We’re going to work with Trump on fighting crime
The Rev. Eugene Rivers is making no apologies for his planned meeting with U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions to form an alliance to fight crime in inner-city neighborhoods. “We live in a time when our nation is tearing itself apart,” he writes at the Herald. “Both political parties are in states of civil war, fighting amongst themselves and with each other. All this benefits exactly no one. As I have said since the day Donald Trump was elected, he is the president now, and I will work with him if I can.”
‘It feels like 2020 this weekend in New Hampshire’
Care to guess who was in New Hampshire this past weekend, where Paul Steinhauser of the Concord Monitor says it felt like it was already 2020? None other than U.S. Rep. Seth Moulton of Massachusetts. Moulton just happened to be in the neighborhood. A mere coincidence, we’re sure.
Church groups mobilize for constitutional abortion-funding fight
Christian Wade at the Eagle Tribune reports on a tussle between local pastors and parishioners versus the Catholic church hierarchy over what extent church members can push for a constitutional amendment calling on lawmakers to ban public funding for abortions. Basically, the locals won – and now they’re on the front lines of pushing the amendment in Massachusetts.
R.I. requests express rail service between Providence and Boston
The T isn’t stamping “rejected” on the request, but that’s roughly what it’s doing. From the Associated Press at the Globe: “Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo is asking the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority to run express commuter trains between Providence and Boston, but the agency says it would be difficult. … MBTA spokesman Joe Pesaturo said it would be difficult to introduce express service before South Station in Boston is expanded because the trains would need room to arrive and depart.”
Knock on wood: Tax collections running $180M over projections
This is nice for a change. From SHNS’s Colin Young at WWLP: “Spending by the end of the year often exceeds original appropriations, and the Legislature now has a nearly $180 million revenue cushion one-third of the way into the new fiscal year. Massachusetts collected $1.838 billion in tax revenue last month, beating the monthly estimate by $58 million, the Department of Revenue announced late Friday.”
The number of six-figure state employees keeps rising
OK, inflation accounts for some of the increase in the number of state employees earning more than $100,000 a year. Still, the number of workers cracking the six-figure barrier was up 24 percent in just the past two years, reports the BBJ’s Don Seiffert. And 2,866 of them are now out-earning Gov. Charlie Baker as of Oct. 17 — 333 more than the number of state workers who earned more than the state’s chief executive in the 2016 calendar year, he notes.
Polito signs bill banning bump stocks
While Gov. Charlie Baker was away in California late last week, Acting Gov. Karyn Polito was the one who signed the legislature’s supplemental budget bill that included a ban on ownership of controversial bump-stocks devices on guns, reports SHNS. Baker previously said he would sign such legislation. Polito’s action makes Massachusetts the first state in the nation to ban bump stocks in the wake of the recent mass shooting in Las Vegas.
It’s begun: New owners of WBZ-AM squeezing employees and stiffing unions
They didn’t waste much time. From Danny McDonald at the Globe: “The company acquiring local radio news titan WBZ-AM has indicated employees at the station will have to re-apply for their positions, and that it does not plan to honor two union contracts.” The station’s employees, said one union official, are in a state of “total disbelief.”
Happy belated Joseph Martin Day!
It was Joseph Martin Day in North Attleboro on Friday – and we completely missed it. But Bob Seay at WGBH didn’t miss it, explaining that the late Joseph Martin, a long-time Massachusetts Republican congressman, was speaker of the U.S. House on two brief occasions in the 1940s and 1950s and yet he’s now “somewhat lost to history.” It’s interesting political history. Check it out.
More National Guard members dispatched to Puerto Rico
Another batch of National Guard members has been dispatched to help out in hurricane-ravaged Puerto Rico, with 15 of them coming from 104th Fighter Wing at Barnes Air National Guard Base in Westfield, reports MassLive.com and the Boston Globe. In Puerto Rico, airmen will mostly provide security at federal installations and be available to assist local law enforcement operations if necessary.
Worcester hires heavy hitters in PawSox pursuit
You could say they plan to leave it all out on the field. Worcester city manager Ed Augustus Jr. has hired Smith College economist Andrew Zimbalist and Jeffrey Mullan—a former state secretary of transportation during the Patrick administration—as consultants to work on the city’s bid to draw the Pawtucket Red Sox to central Mass, Bill Ballou of the Telegram reports.
Here comes the (Worcester) Sun
After two years operating as a paid digital-only news site, the Worcester Sun says it will begin publishing a print edition in early December. Publisher Mark Henderson writes that the long-planned move into print will take the form of a Saturday weekly edition that will be sold on newsstands for $2 and be delivered to Worcester and several surrounding communities via the US Postal Service.
Pride of Marblehead (and Massachusetts and America)
And finally: A big congratulations to Shalane Flanagan, a Marblehead native who won yesterday’s New York City Marathon, becoming the first American woman to win the NY Marathon since 1977, reports Jack Seiner at the Globe.
Author Talk and Book Signing with Stephen Kinzer
Annual OnBoard Awards & Celebration
Politics & Polarization on American Campuses
Mass. Marijuana Summit: Understanding the challenges and opportunities in the new age of legalization
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