Happening Today

Ballot signatures due, serving Thanksgiving meals and more …

— Backers of 21 proposed ballot questions have until today to file signatures with local elections officials, with a requirement of 64,750 certified signatures to make it to the next hurdle. 

— Gov. Charlie Baker, Attorney General Maura Healey, Treasurer Deborah Goldberg, House Speaker Robert DeLeo, Boston Mayor Martin Walsh and state Rep. Byron Rushing serve a Thanks-for-Giving Dinner to 300 participants from Morgan Memorial Goodwill Industries’ job training programs, Morgan Memorial Goodwill, 1010 Harrison Ave, Boston, 11:30 a.m.

Cannabis Advisory Board’s Public Safety and Community Mitigation Subcommittee meets with an agenda that includes a review of its recommendations to the Cannabis Control Commission, Somerset Conference Room, Room 212, 2nd Floor, One Ashburton Place, Boston, 12 p.m.

Friends of Metro Boston holds its Thanksgiving dinner with Gov. Charlie Baker, Sen. Linda Dorcena Forry, Health and Human Services Secretary Marylou Sudders and Department of Mental Health Commissioner Joan Mikula attending, Florian Hall, 55 Hallet St., Dorchester, 12:30 p.m.

— Attorney General Maura Healey speaks on ‘Boston Public Radio,’ WGBH-FM 89.7, 1 p.m.

— Springfield Board of Park Commissioners and the JFK Remembrance Committee host the 54th Annual Remembrance of President John F. Kennedy with U.S. Rep. Richard Neal and Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno among those expected to attend, Eternal Flame, Forest Park, Springfield, 1 p.m.

Rebecca Fraser, author of ‘The Mayflower: The Families, the Voyage, and the Founding of America,’ talks on ‘Radio Boston’ about the Winslow family who arrived aboard the Mayflower in 1620, with Ramona Peters of the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe also joining the program, WBUR-FM 90.9, 3 p.m.

Today’s Stories

TrooperGate morphing into WorcesterGate

As suspected, the focus of the Troopergate investigations are starting to fall on Worcester, specifically on Worcester District Attorney Joseph D. Early Jr.’s office. Gov. Charlie Baker is vowing that investigators will “get to the bottom” of what happened between State Police and the Worcester prosecutors regarding the scrubbing of a police arrest report involving the daughter of a Worcester district judge, reports Travis Andersen at the Globe.

Meanwhile, the Herald’s Joe Dwinell reports that the lawyer for two state troopers who refused to alter the arrest report has written to Early’s office warning “not to destroy any texts, emails, audio, Facebook chats or other evidence in the Troopergate case, according to a demand letter provided to the Herald.” The Herald’s Howie Carr is having a grand old time Googling various names and finding yet more Worcester angles, this time a connection between the daughter’s lawyer and Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito. Melissa Hanson at MassLive reports Attorney General Maura Healey’s office is, along with State Police, looking at the Worcester connections.

Baker steers in new direction, now backs ban on handheld phones by drivers

Gov. Charlie Baker is swerving in a new direction and now backing a proposal that would ban the use of handheld devices by motorists, citing safety concerns, reports SHNS’s Matt Murphy and Michael Norton at CommonWealth magazine. The Globe’s Adam Vaccaro and the Herald’s Matt Stout have more on the governor’s legislative push to get a ban passed.


Jack E. Robinson, RIP

He was indeed character – and he will be missed. From Frank Phillips at the Globe: “Jack E. Robinson III, whose persistent and often colorful quests for major elective offices frequently created distress for Massachusetts Republicans, was found dead in his Duxbury home late Monday. Police said they were asked to check the family house on Flint Rock Drive, where Robinson lived alone, and discovered his body around 7:30 p.m.” A lifelong friend says foul play is not suspected.

Boston Globe

Plymouth DA settles with ex-prosecutor over wrongful termination

Just in time for Thanksgiving in the holiday’s hometown. From the Globe’s Danny McDonald: “Plymouth District Attorney Timothy J. Cruz settled a wrongful termination lawsuit brought by a former prosecutor who claimed he had been fired for not contributing to Cruz’s re-election campaign in 2010 for $248,000, according to a copy of the agreement released to the Globe through a records request.”

Boston Globe

Ex-Rep. Henriquez’s Thanksgiving wish

Another pre-holiday development. From the Herald’s Laurel Sweet: “Disgraced former state Rep. Carlos Henriquez, who was run out of the Legislature following his 2014 conviction for physically assaulting a woman, is hoping the state Appeals Court will grant him a second chance to clear his name. ‘The results that came from these allegations were not the right results,” attorney William White Jr. said yesterday after pleading Henriquez’s case before a special sitting of (justices).”

Boston Herald

Crowley eyes McGee’s Senate seat

Former Lynn city councilor Paul Crowley says he will run for the state senate seat soon to be vacated by Lynn mayor-elect Thomas McGee, according to a report by Thomas Grillo at the Lynn Item. Crowely is an unenrolled voter but likely to run as a Republican. Democrat state Rep. Brendan Crighton is the only other candidate to declare so far ahead of a March special election. 

Lynn Item

PawSox talks heat up with Ash coming out of bullpen for Worcester

Jay Ash, Gov. Baker’s economic development czar, took part in a meeting earlier this week in Worcester about luring the Pawtucket Red Sox to the city, Bill Shaner of Worcester Magazine reports.  Officials are keeping a tight lid on what was discussed at the meeting, but Shaner notes it was the first time such a high-ranking state official has been active in the talks.

Meanwhile, the Telegram’s Bill Ballou reports that PawSox officials’s first choice is to stay in Rhode Island but that millions in potential state funds to build a new ballpark are being held up thanks to old friend Curt Schilling, whose gaming studio’s spectacular bankruptcy has kind of put a damper on things.

Worcester Magazine

Restorations before reforms

First things first at the T, via the Herald’s Matt Stout: “The cash-strapped MBTA is dropping nearly $100,000 on new office digs for General Manager Luis Ramirez, his staff and other departments, many of whom have quietly moved to the refurbished space inside the downtown state transportation building in recent weeks, the Herald has learned.”

Boston Herald

Christmas strike by Tufts Medical nurses?

Christmas is around the corner and the Massachusetts Nurses Association may have a not-so-joyous present for Tufts Medical Center: A possible holiday strike, for the second strike this year, if it happens. The MNA is keeping mum. The BBJ’s Jessica Bartlett has more.


Local pols denounce Trump administration’s move against Haitian immigrants

Shannon Young has a good round-up of local political reactions to the Trump administration’s move to end the Temporary Protected Status program that’s allowed 60,000 Haitains (5,000 of them in Massachusetts) to legally stay in the U.S. Among the pols criticizing the move are U.S. Sen. Ed Markey and U.S. Reps. Jim McGovern, Seth Moulton and Katherine Clark.


GOP aligns itself with among the most hated firms in America: Cable companies

If we’re reading this Washington Post story right, the FCC’s chair Ajit Pai says he doesn’t want the federal government “micromanaging the Internet,” so he and his fellow GOP commissioners plan to end so-called “net neutrality” next month, giving more power to Internet providers (i.e. cable companies) to, well, micromanage the Internet, but Pai says there will be rules in place to effectively deter the companies from veering too far away from the net-neutrality rules now in place and … the question is: Then why make the changes? It’s all about ideological principles, not about whether it makes any sense.

U.S. Sen. Ed Markey tweets that Pai is listening only to “broadband barons” and he’s calling for a “firestorm of opposition” to the FCC’s move. One person who will be closely monitoring internet providers will be David Choffnes, an assistant professor of computer and information science at Northeastern, where he and his team have developed tools to track future “throttling” patterns of IP companies. He explains at the BBJ.

Washington Post

Transgender history in the making in the Third District?

The Herald’s Joe Battenfeld interviews Alexandra Chandler, who, if elected by voters in the Third District, would become the first transgender member of Congress, though Chandler says her “first and foremost desire is to serve the people of this district with their everyday concerns.”

Boston Herald

Not everyone is cheering the new ‘free’ contraceptives bill

There’s no free lunch in life – and no free contraceptives, for that matter, Jon Hurst, president of the Retailers Association of Massachusetts, is basically saying of the just-passed legislation expanding access to birth control in Massachusetts. “Let’s be honest — no co-pays on prescriptions means higher premiums and higher taxes,” Hurst said. But the BBJ’s Jessica Bartlett reports that the progressive Alliance for Business Leadership is fine with the bill.


Middleboro not all aboard on state’s station proposal

State transportation officials got an earful at a hearing the other night. From Jennette Barnes at Wicked Local: “Selectmen and residents from Middleboro and Lakeville pressed transportation officials for answers Monday about the proposed South Coast Rail station in Middleboro, saying the state has not done a traffic study and has failed to communicate adequately with the town. ‘Nobody had the courtesy to tell Middleboro that we were being picked,’ said Allin Frawley, chairman of the Middleboro Board of Selectmen.” It was all downhill from there.

Wicked Local

Lynch: Congress needs new sexual-harassment reporting mechanism

From Tori Bedford at WGBH: “Amid a surge of sexual harassment allegations sweeping through Congress, Rep. Stephen Lynch said Capitol Hill needs a better system to deal with rampant sexual harassment and abuse. ‘There needs [something like] an ombudsman … where someone represents you as the victim and can take the case for you and just gives you a little separation there,’ Lynch said in an interview with Boston Public Radio Tuesday, ‘but also gives the enforcer the ability to take action.’”


Mass. Eye and Ear says it can no longer go it alone

Mass. Eye and Ear is pleading financial hardship as it pushes for its proposed merger with Partners HealthCare, a deal that state regulators don’t seem too keen on approving. The Globe’s Dayal McCluskey has the details.

Boston Globe

Sign of times: ID now required to enter state office building

Is it really necessary? From SHNS’s Colin young at WBUR: “Visitors to any of the state agencies in the McCormack Building across Bowdoin Street from the State House now have to show a photo ID to enter, part of a new policy that took effect Monday. Under the new visitor access policy, anyone without a state employee ID now must present a photo ID at the “security visitor management desk” in the lobby, the Division of Capital Asset Maintenance and Management said.”


Study says voluntary program is reducing how much zombie gamblers plunk into slot machines

The Play My Way program, which regulators have hailed as a first-in-the-nation approach to use technology to help gamblers limit what they spend, has led to less spending and fewer losses among gamblers at Plainridge Park Casino. Researchers from the Cambridge Health Alliance presented their initial analysis of the program to state regulators Tuesday, Lynn Jolicoeur of WBUR reports. 


Leominister Mayor Mazzarella wins close recount

A close election got even closer after a recount in Leominster finished up Tuesday. In the end, though, the state’s longest-serving mayor, Dean Mazzarella, had his election to a 13th straight term confirmed, Dave Canton reports at MassLive. Mozzarella’s margin of victory  over write-in challenger Kenny Ricker shrunk during the hand recount from 210 votes to just 106. 


Cheers! T narrowly approves alcohol ads on transit property

We missed this one from the other day. From Bruce Mohl at CommonWealth magazine: “The MBTA’s oversight board voted 3-2 on Monday to approve a 3.5-month test of alcohol advertising inside subway stations, on billboards, and at bus shelters. The T’s Fiscal and Management Control Board failed to approve a new alcohol advertising policy at its meeting last week, deadlocking on a 2-2 vote. The tie was broken on Monday when Brian Shortsleeve, who missed last week’s meeting, cast the deciding vote.”


Brother of former gubernatorial candidate to marry Gwyneth Paltrow

See? We got the political angle in the headline. It’s not all about Gwyneth Paltrow. Anyway, the Globe is indeed reporting that Brad Falchuk, a Newton native and the co-creator of “Glee” and “American Horror Story,” is tying the knot with actress Gwyneth Paltrow. He’s the brother of none other than Evan Falchuk, who ran for Massachusetts governor as a member of the United Independent Party in 2014, technically making this a politically valid post.

‘A civill body politick’

The Globe’s Jeff Jacoby has a nice pre-Thanksgiving column on the democratic meaning and importance of the Mayflower Compact, which established a “civill body politick” with elected leaders tasked with passing “just and equall lawes, ordinances, acts, constitutions, and offices” for English settlers who landed on New England’s shores in 1620. It’s sort of our Magna Carta ( or Iroquois Confederation ), something worth remembering and cherishing this Thanksgiving weekend.

Boston Globe

Happy Thanksgiving – and see you next Monday

Speaking of Thanksgiving, we’d like to wish all our MassterList readers a happy Thanksgiving and long holiday weekend – and we’ll be back first thing Monday morning.

Sunday public affairs TV

Keller at Large, WBZ-TV Channel 4, 8:30 a.m. This week’s guest: Gov. Charlie Baker talks about the 2018 elections and his case for four more years as governor, in the second of a two-part interview with host Jon Keller.

This is New England, NBC Boston Channel 10, 9:30 a.m. With host Latoyia Edwards, this week’s main focus: Fire Smart, with interviews of Commissioner Joseph Finn of the Boston Fire Department and Ashley Gocken from First Alert.

This Week in Business, NECN, 10 a.m. A re-run of last week with some changes: Spectrum Health Systems CEO Kurt Isaacson, whose firm runs treatment facilities around Massachusetts, talks about the latest efforts to  fight opioid crisis; Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce CEO Jim Rooney on top business stories, and Aixa Beauchamp, co-chair of the Massachusetts United for Puerto Rico Fund.  

CEO Corner, NECN, 10:30 a.m. From Israeli spy to CEO, the story of Lior Div, who started Cybersecurity company Cybereason. 

On The Record, WCVB-TV Channel 5, 11 a.m. This Sunday’s guest: U.S. Rep. Stephen Lynch, who talks with anchor Ed Harding and co-anchor Janet Wu.

CityLine, WCVB-TV Channel 5, 12 p.m. This Sunday’s main focus: Post-Thankinggiving Food Tour, a look at what some area restaurants are serving up these days.

Tech-Based Training for Health Care Workers on the Move

Commonwealth Corporation

Criminalizing Poverty in America

John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum

Today’s Headlines


That da Vinci painting that sold for $450 million made a secret visit to Boston in 2009 – Boston Globe

MBTA GM, staff get near $100G office upgrade – Boston Herald


Worcester defense lawyer eyeing run for district attorney – Telegram & Gazette

Baker signs bond bill authorizing $45 million for western Mass. broadband – MassLive

Former Lynn city councilor Paul Crowley wants to replace Tom McGee in the senate – Lynn Item

New Bedford regional airport adds commercial flights to Florida – Standard-Times

Stoughton High grade claims sexual abuse in suit against district – Brockton Enteprise


Uber breach, kept secret, affected 57 million accounts – New York Times

Pentagon investigating behavior of military personnel on Trump’s Asia trip – Politico

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