Happening Today

House budget, data security, Gaming Commission

Massachusetts Clean Energy Center hosts a Massachusetts Offshore Wind Workforce Stakeholder meeting to discuss the results and release of its Offshore Wind Workforce Assessment report, MassCEC Offices, 63 Franklin Street, 3rd Floor, Boston, 9 a.m.

— Boston Mayor Martin Walsh presents his proposed Fiscal Year 2019 to Fiscal Year 2023 Imagine Boston Capital Plan, the Shattuck Picnic Grove at Franklin Park, Corner of Forest Hills Drive & Circuit Drive, Jamaica Plain, 9:45 a.m.

— Treasurer Deborah Goldberg will chair the Massachusetts State Retirement Board meeting, MSRB Headquarters, One Winter Street, 8th Floor, Boston, 10 a.m.

Massachusetts House members meet to continue budget deliberations, House Chamber, 10 a.m.

— Sen. Barbara L’Italien, Rep. Jennifer Benson and advocates hold a press conference to discuss a data security breach bill set to be taken up in the Senate, Room 222, 10:30 a.m.

— Gov. Charlie Baker joins Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Matthew Beaton, Department of Fish and Game Commissioner Ronald Amidon, city of Boston officials and students to stock Jamaica Pond with trout, Jamaica Pond Beach Area, Pond Street and Elliott Circle, Jamaicaway, Boston, 10:30 a.m.

— The Senate meets in formal session to take up bills dealing with veterans benefits, consumer protections from data breaches, and fiscal 2018 supplemental budget, Gardner Auditorium, 11 a.m.

— Boston Mayor Martin Walsh and Dorchester Reporter editor Bill Forry are guests on ‘Inside Boston with Joe Mathieu,’ a Facebook Live program, 12 p.m. — U.S. Sen. Edward Markey and others hold a telephone press conference on importance of net neutrality for rural communities, 12 p.m.

Gaming Commission meets with a vote expected on both the designation of the MGM Springfield gaming floor and gaming establishment, MassMutual Center, 1277 Main St., Rooms 1 and 2, Springfield, 1 p.m.

— Two former Obama administration foreign policy officials — Samantha Power, who was U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, and Ben Rhodes, the deputy national security advisor for strategic communications and speechwriting — will discuss diplomatic affairs during the Obama era, Kennedy School, Cambridge, 6 p.m.  

— Gov. Charlie Baker joins Health and Human Services Secretary Marylou Sudders to announce a partnership with Youth Villages to expand YVLifeSet, Fairmont Copley Plaza, 135 St. James Ave., Boston, 7 p.m.

For more calendar listings, check out State House News Service’s Daily Advances (pay wall) and MassterList’s Beacon Hill Town Square below.

Today’s Stories

Setti Warren drops out of governor’s race, citing lack of funds

This is a political shocker. From Frank Phillips at the Globe: “In a major jolt to the Democratic primary race for governor, former Newton mayor Setti Warren has abruptly ended his campaign, saying he faced insurmountable financial hurdles in trying to unseat Governor Charlie Baker. With only $51,644 in his account after a year of campaigning, Warren was expected to send an e-mail to his supporters Thursday morning explaining that he did not have the resources to take on the popular Republican, who has a $7.9 million campaign account and consistently high standing in public polls.”

A number of thoughts: 1.) This should theoretically help Democratic gubernatorial candidate Jay Gonzalez, more of a mainstream candidate, in his now two-way race against Dem rival Robert Massie 2.) But this seems to be the year of progressives, if there ever was one, and one can easily see a wave of progressive support building up behind Massie. 3.) Baker will still likely clean the clock of whomever Dems nominate. 

Boston Globe

Kraft privately ripped Trump’s ‘divisive’ and ‘horrible’ actions during NFL protests

He may be a public supporter and friend of President Donald Trump. But behind closed doors, New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft harshly criticized Trump’s “divisive” and “horrible” stance against NFL players who took a protest knee during the playing of the national anthem last fall, according to a report by the New York Times, which somehow obtained an audio recording of a confidential meeting last year between NFL players and owners. Kevin Duffy at MassLive and Kimberly Atkins at the Herald have more.


Maine sheriff killing: Here we go again?

Only weeks after a Yarmouth policer was murdered, allegedly by a career criminal roaming free, a Maine sheriff’s deputy was killed yesterday, allegedly by a man free on bail while awaiting a court hearing on multiple gun charges in Massachusetts. WBUR’s Ally Jarmanning and a three-reporter team at the Herald have the details on yesterday’s early morning murder of a sheriff’s deputy in Maine – and the ongoing manhunt for his suspected killer.

But are the two tragic cop-killing incidents connected, from a criminal-justice-system standpoint? The Herald obviously thinks so, with a headline on its print edition this morning reading: “Another lowlife on the street … another officer shot in cold blood.” Yarmouth police chief Frank Fredericton definitely thinks there’s a criminal-justice-breakdown  connection, reports the Herald’s Jules Crittendon. We’re not so sure, but they are disturbing cases.   

Mount Ida’s band of betrayers

The Globe’s Joan Vennochi is ripping into Gov. Charlie Baker for not taking a firmer stand on the Mount Ida College fiasco, saying he was an ‘accessory’ to UMass’s ‘terrible betrayal’ of students when it moved so rapidly to buy Mount Ida’s Newton campus and effectively helped the school to shutter its doors. She definitely has a point about how everyone seems to be passing the buck on who’s responsible for what in this drama.

Meanwhile, the Globe’s Yvonne Abraham hurls perhaps the ultimate insult that can be thrown at non-profit college administrators: She accuses Mount Ida’s leaders of acting no better than for-profit college scammers.

Former EPA chief and T overseer among those considered for UMass-Boston gig

Speaking of UMass: Gina McCarthy, who oversaw the EPA under President Obama, and MBTA Fiscal and Management Control Board Chairman Joseph Aiello are among those who have been approached about the role of chancellor at troubled UMass-Boston, Gintautus Dumcius reports in MassLive. McCarthy is herself a UMass Boston graduate. 


WBZ’s Lana Jones, RIP

A very sad announcement from WBZ: “WBZ News Radio 1030 is deeply saddened by the passing of one of their veteran news reporters, Lana Jones. Lana died suddenly (Wednesday) morning at UMass Medical Center in Worcester. She was an outstanding journalist who will be severely missed by her colleagues and friends in the Boston media. ‘Lana was the consummate professional who could take a hundred page Supreme Court Decision and boil it down into a concise report for our listeners,’ said Bill Flaherty, WBZ Program Director. ‘She knew everyone and everything. She will be greatly missed.’”

The tributes for Lana are pouring in at Twitter. The Herald’s Jessica Heslam writes that Jones was a “passionate, hard-working, talented reporter” — and much more.


Debate erupts in House over immigration detainer amendment

Republican Rep. Jim Lyons yesterday forced a vote on a controversial immigration budget amendment that would have authorized local police to enforce federal immigration laws, but the bill was shot down after sharp floor debate that included Democratic Rep. Paul Tucker, the former police chief in Salem, denouncing the amendment, reports SHNS’s Colin Young at the Salem News. And less than a third of House Republicans backed Lyons’ measure, it should be noted.

Salem News

Wynn boss: Yeah, we might sell the Everett casino, no wait, it’s not for sale

Earlier this week, Wynn Resorts CEO Matt Maddox appeared to leave the door open to a possible sale, under certain circumstances, of its under-construction Everett casino, known (for now) as Wynn Boston Harbor, as the BBJ reported. Yesterday, Maddox was trying to slam the door closed, pronouncing on CNBC: “Boston’s not up for sale.” Michelle Williams at MassLive and Mark Arsenault at the Globe have more on Maddox’s not-for-sale pronouncement.

How liberal are Dem candidates running for Congress? Hint: Liz Warren looks like a moderate compared to some

There’s been plenty of stories out there about the flood of first-time candidates running in Democratic primaries this year. But the Washington Post has a terrific story, with lots of charts, that tries to gauge just how liberal the Democratic candidates are in U.S. House races. Let’s put it this way: About half of them are to the left of Nancy Pelosi and a fair chunk of them are to left of the party’s progressive darling, U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren, according to the Post’s benchmark measurements.

Washington Post

Bump confirms: Higher pay is leading to lower turnover for assistant DAs

A new report by Auditor Suzanne Bump says that recent moves by lawmakers to increase the pay of assistant district attorneys have worked to reduce turnover among prosecutors. Shira Schoenberg at MassLive has the salary and retention-rate details.


Commission keeps to strict health-care spending goals

From the BBJ’s Jessica Bartlett: “The state’s health care watchdog group has maintained the current year’s strict limit on health care spending growth for the state for next year, saying Massachusetts must keep working to rein in one of the most expensive health care markets in the world. The Health Policy Commission voted to keep the cost growth benchmark in the state to 3.1 percent for calendar year 2019.”


Massport to study feasibility of a monorail to ease traffic at Logan

If you love trains, you’re going to love this. From Adam Vaccaro at the Globe: “Seeking to reduce road traffic, officials at Logan International Airport will spend $15 million to design and study the feasibility of a transit line that would ferry travelers to and from terminals, the Blue Line, economy parking, and the car rental center. The Massachusetts Port Authority is planning to hire a consultant to advise it on building an ‘automated people mover’ similar to trains or monorails used by other busy airports around the world.”

Boston Globe

Lawmakers push for opioid recovery centers in hardest hit areas

This is interesting, from Christian Wade at the Newburyport Daily News: “The prospect of more money for substance abuse recovery centers has lawmakers jockeying to locate the counseling programs in areas hit hardest by opioid addiction. The state House of Representatives, which is debating a nearly $41 billion budget for fiscal 2019, is proposing at least five recovery centers at a cost of $3.5 million. The move is backed by House Speaker Robert DeLeo, D-Winthrop, and dozens of other lawmakers.”

Daily News

House rejects Walsh’s proposal for joint policing of Seaport – for now

It seems like such a simple and logical plan: Let both Boston and state police jointly share responsibility for policing the Seaport area. But nothing is ever so simple and logical in turf-conscious Boston, as the Globe’s Matt Stout reports this morning.

Boston Globe

Food processing firm backs off Seaport plans

Speaking of Seaport, from Dan Atkinson at the Herald: “The food processing giant looking to move out of Widett Circle is going back to the drawing board, pulling out of a plan to develop an industrial site in the Seaport — an area a developer says needs significant repairs to the barrier protecting it from the sea.”

Boston Herald

Report: Google could be anchor tenant at new Kendall Square building

Google could well become the anchor tenant of a new 400,000-square-foot office tower that Boston Properties plans to build in Cambridge’s booming Kendall Square, reports the BBJ’s Catherine Carlock, citing sources.


So how much would apartment rents rise if Amazon chooses Boston for its new HQ2?

Speaking of giant tech firms in the area: There would be a cost involved if Amazon ultimately chooses Boston as the site of its new second headquarters – and we’re not talking about state economic incentives to lure Amazon here. The New York Times, crunching the numbers from a Zillow study, says rents could rise by about $500 a month over the first 10 years if 50,000 Amazon worker ultimately landed here. The H2Q rental impact would be, percentage-wise, even worse in places like Nashville and Denver. 


Markey expresses ‘serious concerns’ about storing nuclear waste near rising seas

The Globe’s David Abel reports on U.S. Ed Markey’s call to get nuclear waste from Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station and other nuclear plants as far away as possible from rising seas.

Boston Globe

At behest of 11-year-old, Hopkinton boosts tobacco-buying age

The Hopkinton Board of Health has voted to raise the minimum age to buy tobacco products from 18 to 21, an action spurred on by the letter-writing campaign of a local elementary school student, Jonathan Phelps reports in the MetroWest Daily News. After he learned about the dangers of tobacco products in a health class, fifth-grader Logan Sullivan wrote selectmen to ask why the town hadn’t followed the lead of other communities that raised the age threshold.

MetroWest Daily News

Rebates coming for 100 homeowners in tax lien settlement

A settlement agreement between the office of Attorney General Maura Healey and a Worcester company that purchased tax liens from communities — and then charged excessive fees to collect those debts — means some 100 homeowners will be seeing refund payments.


Heroux ran thrifty mayoral campaign, relatively speaking

Paul Heroux made the move from the State House to the corner office in Attleboro City Hall by spending relatively few dollars compared to other mayoral races around the state, Jim Hand reports in the Sun Chronicle. Heroux spent $28,000 on his campaign, or $5.68 per vote, Hand reports, citing data released by the Office of Campaign and Political Finance. By contrast, Boston Mayor Marty Walsh dropped $31 per vote in his landslide re-election effort.  

Sun Chronicle

Suit targets Natick school board’s public comments policy

Backed by the ACLU, parents who tried to raise issues of bullying with the Natick School Committee during public meetings are suing the board over a policy that limits public comment, Henry Schwan reports in the MetroWest Daily News. The policy lays out a number of off-limit topics during the “public speak” portion of its meetings, but an attorney for parents called the policy “a collection of vague excuses for silencing unwanted voices.”

MetroWest Daily News

City Council approves funding mechanism for Greenway district

The Boston City Council has approved a business improvement district, or BID, for the Rose Kennedy Greenway Conservancy, which could help raise as much as $1.5 million for the park’s upkeep, Adam Gaffin reports at Universal Hub. The BID—the second in the city after one in Downtown Crossing—enables the city to levy additional taxes that can be dedicated back to the Greenway.

Universal Hub

French President Macron’s moving gift in memory of Belleau Wood

WBUR’s Robin Young interviewed William Anderson, a retired Marine Corps colonel, about French President Emmanuel Macron’s gift of a sapling from France’s Belleau Wood, scene of a horrible battle fought by U.S. Marines during WWI, to be planted on the White House lawn. The grandfather of a MassterList author fought at Belleau Wood and so we couldn’t agree more with this comment by Anderson on Macron’s gift: “I think that’s just a startling tribute to Marines, and a great credit on the French for coming up with that idea. I mean some guy said, ‘We gotta bring something, a gift on this state visit,’ and for them to think of something as significant as an oak tree from Belleau Wood, to me, is just remarkable.”


Free Open House Networking Event

North Shore Technology Council

IEEE 2018 International Symposium on Technologies for Homeland Security

IEEE Boston Section

Author Talk and Book Signing with Kathleen Teahan

State Library of Massachusetts

Leonard Bernstein and President John F. Kennedy

John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum

Today’s Headlines


Raffles hotel coming to Boston via new Back Bay tower – Boston Globe

Food factory’s move to Seaport sunk – Boston Herald


Working on Cape Cod’s welcome mat – Cape Cod Times

Worcester shop owner gets 8-month sentence for nearly $300K food stamp fraud – Telegram & Gazette

Work hasn’t started at a massive Lynn waterfront development site, but that may change this year – Lynn Item


Michael Cohen to invoke Fifth Amendment right in Stormy Daniels case – Washington Post

Jackson troubles shine light on fact of Washington life: Sleeping pills – Politico

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