Happening Today

Opioids bill, ‘Good Guys’ awards, Suffolk DA forum

Department of Revenue hosts a public hearing on proposed regulations on marijuana retail taxes, 100 Cambridge St., 2nd Floor, Room B, Boston, 10 a.m.

Committee on Mental Health, Substance Use and Recovery holds a hearing on a redraft of Gov. Charlie Baker’s opioid bill, Room B-1, 10:30 a.m.

— Freedom for All Massachusetts, a coalition seeking to uphold the state’s transgender nondiscrimination law, officially launches its campaign, with House Speaker Robert DeLeo, Debra Robbin of Jane Doe Inc., Nancy Stager of Eastern Bank and others expected to attend, Law Offices of Mintz Levin, 1 Financial Center, 38th floor, Boston, 10:30 a.m.

— The Massachusetts Senate is expected to meet in a formal session to consider a veterans benefit bill, Gardner Auditorium, 11 a.m.

MassPIRG press conference on a report concerning the public health and environmental benefits of transitioning bus fleets from diesel fuel to electric power, outside Ruggles MBTA Station, 1150 Tremont St., 11 a.m.

— U.S. Sen. Edward Markey speaks at a New England Council luncheon, Seaport Hotel – Plaza Ballroom, One Seaport Ln., Boston, 12 p.m.

— Gov. Charlie Baker joins Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito who will sign final Community Compacts for all 351 cities and towns in Massachusetts, Grand Staircase, 1:30 p.m.

Massachusetts Cultural Council holds a reception to celebrate its Amplify grant program, with House Ways and Means Chairman Jeff Sanchez expected to attend, Room 350, 4 p.m.

— The Massachusetts Women’s Political Caucus hosts its 17th Annual Good Guys Awards, with Treasurer Deb Goldberg, Gov. Charlie Baker and Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito expected to attend, Omni Parker House – Rooftop Ballroom, 60 School Street, Boston, starting at 5 p.m. and the governor expected to arrive at 7:30 p.m.

— Gov. Charlie Baker participates in the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Massachusetts Bay’s Health and Wealth Leadership Forum, Sheraton Boston Hotel – Grand Ballroom, 40 Dalton Street, Boston, 5:45 p.m.

— Suffolk District Attorney candidates Evandro Carvalho, Linda Champion, Greg Henning, Shannon McAuliffe and Rachael Rollins participate in a candidates forum hosted by the Boston wards 3, 4 and 5 Democratic Committees, Suffolk Law School, Boston NAACP, MassVOTE and the Mass. Dems Latino Caucus, Suffolk Law School, 120 Tremont St., Boston, 6:30 p.m.

— Massachusetts Asian American Commission holds its 12th annual Unity Dinner, with Bunker Hill Community College president Pam Eddinger, Treasurer Deborah Goldberg and Auditor Suzanne Bump expected to speak, Boston University, George Sherman Union, Metcalf Hall, 775 Commonwealth Ave., Boston, 6 p.m.

— Gov. Charlie Baker attends EMPath’s Economic Independence Day, where First Lady Lauren Baker will be the featured speaker and chair for the event, Boston Public Library – Guastavino Room, 700 Boylston Street, Boston, 6:45 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

State establishment to Rosenberg after release of devastating report: Just go

The Senate Ethics Committee released a devastating report yesterday that accused state Sen. Stan Rosenberg, while serving as Senate president, of demonstrating a “significant failure of judgement and leadership” by refusing to rein in his husband, Bryon Hefner, who Rosbenberg knew was a “disruptive, volatile, and abusive” force at the State House. The report found that Rosenberg didn’t violate any chamber rules, but he either knew, or should have known, how Hefner had been racially and sexually harassing staff and others on Beacon Hill. The racial harassment is a new charge against Hefner.

Not surprisingly, many on Beacon Hill, including Gov. Charlie Baker and Attorney General Maura Healey, are now calling on Rosenberg to resign from his senate seat. Others think voters should decide his fate – and, with Rosenberg facing a Democratic primary challenge this fall, that fate could well be getting the boot. Then again, the Hampshire Gazette reports that the Amherst Democrat still has his share of supporters in his home district.

CommonWealth magazine’s Bruce Mohl, the Boston Globe’s Joshua Miller, Matt Stout and Yvonne Abraham, the Boston Herald’s Marie Szaniszlo and SHNS’s Matt Murphy and Colin A. Young at WGBH have the details.

Fyi: Here’s the full Senate report, via the Globe. Fyi II: The Globe’s Yvonne Abraham, who first broke the blockbuster story about Bryon Hefner’s antics at the State House, says that Stan has only himself to blame. Fyi III: The Globe has an excellent summary of the five main charges against Rosenberg.

Former White House speechwriter from Barnstable sues ex-wife over abuse allegations

David Sorenson, the White House speechwriter who resigned his Trump administration post in February after his ex-wife claimed he had abused her, is suing his former spouse, saying her claims were false and cost him his job, Madeleine List reports at the Cape Cod Times. Sorenson’s suit, which seeks $4 million in damages, was filed in Barnstable Superior Court.

Cape Cod Times

Kennedy University, here we come: Walsh says city takeover of UMass Boston worth considering

Boston Mayor Marty Walsh says having the UMass system turn the Dorchester campus of UMass Boston over to the city is an idea he would consider, Shirley Leung reports in the Globe. “I would be interested in having the conservation,” Walsh tells Leung, expressing his frustration at the litany of budget and other issues that have come to a head with the UMass purchase of Mount Ida College.

As Leung notes, some cities have made the approach work, but the idea at this point is just a classic trial balloon. We should find out very soon how long and how high it floats. 

Btw: An independent city university would need a name. Boston University is taken. University of Boston might get confused with the former. Kennedy University? Hmm. The Kennedy Library and Kennedy Senate Institute are already there, so … Then again, Harvard might get jealous.

Warren leads in NH presidential poll, but watch out for Deval

A new Suffolk University Political Research Center poll shows U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren as the front-runner for the next New Hampshire Democratic presidential primary, leading former vice president Joe Biden, U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders and five other potential candidates, reports James Lindell at the Globe. But the Herald’s Joe Battenfeld writes that Warren’s numbers are still surprisingly low and he says the candidate to watch in New Hampshire is former Gov. Deval Patrick, who he says is polling rather well. Battenfeld also notes Trump is running very strong on the GOP side, based on the Suffolk data.

Meanwhile, is Weld laying the groundwork for a Libertarian run for president in 2020?

So far, we have Elizabeth Warren, Seth Moulton, Deval Patrick, Joseph Kennedy III and John Kerry all mentioned as potential presidential candidates from Massachusetts in 2020. Now we can add a sixth potential candidate: Former Gov. Bill Weld, who is clearly mulling a potential bid as a Libertarian candidate, based on his interview with Mett Welch at Reason.com. He doesn’t quite say he’s giving it thought, but it’s pretty obvious it’s on his mind.


DeLeo: House will likely pass ‘red flag’ gun bill later this month

House Speaker Robert DeLeo yesterday endorsed the so-called ‘red flag’ bill that would let judges temporarily confiscate someone’s guns if they are deemed a danger to themselves or others, reports Shira Schoenberg at MassLive and SHNS’s Katie Lannan at WBUR. DeLeo — who praised young students for pushing the gun-control legislation in the wake of the recent mass school shooting in Florida – expressed confidence the legislation will win House passage later this month.

Bruce Mohl at CommonWealth interviews Reed Shafer-Ray, a senior at Harvard College, who Rep. Marjorie Decker credits with first proposing the ‘red flag’ legislation.

‘Jill Stein isn’t doing the left any favors’

Jill Stein, the perennial Green candidate for various Massachusetts offices and/or the White House, is causing a stir by equating Russian election interference with US espionage and refusing to hand over campaign documents to Congress that may (or may not) be related to Russian meddling. Molly Roberts at the Washington Post is blasting Stein, saying she and other far-left pols are basically siding with Republicans in downplaying Russian meddling in U.S. elections.

Washington Post

From a baseball stadium to a ‘Space Needle,’ a look back at some of Western Mass.’s greatest development flops

Perhaps prompted by confidence that MGM will indeed finish and actually open its new $1 billion casino in Springfield, MassLive’s Robert Rizzuto dived into the Springfield Republican’s old archives and came up with a list of long-forgotten development proposals that went nowhere in Western Massachusetts. They include lots of casinos, a jail redevelopment, a baseball stadium and, of course, Springfield’s very own ‘Space Needle.’ He also has many of the pretty design sketches developers once submitted and peddled.


Meanwhile, MassMutual’s executives may be spending a little more time in Boston, less in Springfield

Speaking of economic development in Western Massachusetts: No, Roger Crandall is not saying Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Co. will be effectively moving its headquarters from Springfield to Boston after it opens its 300,000-square-foot office building in Boston’s Seaport in a few years. But the MassMutual chief executive is saying he anticipates spending more time in Boston, as will other MassMutual executives, reports the BBJ’s Greg Ryan.


State Police activate a number of reforms, but are they enough?

From new GPS tracking devices in State Police cruisers to revamping overtime pay for troopers, the Baker administration yesterday gave an update on its implementation of various reforms at the scandal-ridden State Police. Michelle Williams at MassLive has the details on overtime changes and reductions. WBUR reports on new GPS tracking devices in cruisers to help make sure troopers are actually working shifts. Fox25 reports on how, yes, Troop E is now gone. And the Herald’s Antonio Planas reports on how some experts believe much stronger reform measurers will be required to truly change the department.

Quincy mayor: ‘We’ve been disrespected’

Quincy Mayor Thomas Koch is not happy with Boston Mayor Marty Walsh’s new plan to rebuild Long Island Bridge via barges hauling construction equipment, materials and workers to the site. Koch says he wants a ferry to the island, not a bridge, and he complains Quincy was left out of the recent decision making. “Quite frankly, I think we’ve been disrespected,” Mayor Koch told WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Carl Stevens.


Don’t forget: After Lively comes Diehl …

Jack Sullivan at CommonWealth magazine isn’t disagreeing with the Herald’s Joe Battenfeld that, conceivably, extreme right-wing candidate Scott Lively’s primary challenge to Republican Gov. Charlie Baker could end up helping Baker to “solidify his moderate credentials.” But the flip-side to that, Sullivan notes, is that Baker may nevertheless be seen as representing a party that attracts candidates like Lively – and, after the primary, Rep. Geoff Diehl, a huge Trump fan, may well be running on the general-election ticket as well, posing yet more problems for Baker.


Bold prediction: ‘Scott Lively Will Win the MA GOP Gubernatorial Primary’

There’s at least one person, drtucker at Blue Mass Group, who thinks Gov. Charlie Baker is facing a much tougher primary challenge from Scott Lively than many think. The reasoning: “The same folks who blithely assume Lively can’t pull off an upset (especially in a low-turnout primary) are the same folks who blithely assumed Donald Trump couldn’t win the 2016 Republican presidential primary.” Point taken.

Blue Mass Group

Everything you ever wanted to know about the state GOP convention and more …

The team at State House News Service has a good candidate-by-candidate roundup of what happened at the Massachusetts Republican Party’s convention this past weekend, complete with videos, audios and photos of candidates who spoke at the convention, including a certain GOP challenger to Gov. Charlie Baker.

SHNS (pay wall)

Barney Frank confident his namesake financial bill will survive GOP onslaught

Even though President Trump has vowed to do a ‘‘big number on’’ the Dodd-Frank financial regulations law enacted after the 2008 Wall Street crash, former U.S. Rep. Barney Frank of Massachusetts and the co-author of the legislation is confident Dodd-Frank will survive, reports the Associated Press at the Herald. ‘‘It’s much better than where I thought we would be,’’ Frank said of the current status of the bill.

Boston Herald

About that $20M the state just dished out to Amazon …

The Globe’s Tim Logan digs into the details of the $20 million that the state is spending to bring Amazon, and 2,000 jobs, to a new building at Seaport Square. Most of the money, it appears, is for potential infrastructure improvement, including perhaps a new entryway to the Silver Line’s Courthouse Station and bike lanes. Fyi: The deal is separate from Amazon’s search for a new HQ2.

Boston Globe

Lawmaker: Nip-bottle deposit proposal could get to House floor this summer

A proposal to attach a 5-cent deposit to single-serving “nip” booze bottles could get a vote on the House floor this summer, a lawmaker tells George Brennan of the Martha’s Vineyard Times.  Rep. Randy Hunt, the Sandwich Republican who is lead sponsor of the bill, says the legislation is now before the House Ways and Means committee. To help emphasize the scope of the litter problem the nip-sized bottle pose, Hunt emailed fellow lawmakers urging them to take 90 seconds to look for them on the roadsides of their own communities. 

MV Times

Fifty years later: Remembering Bill Russell’s groundbreaking appointment as the NBA’s first black coach

Bill Russell has downplayed his historic appointment as coach of the Boston Celtics in 1968, becoming the NBA’s first black coach in the process. But Esteban Bustillos at WGBH reports it was indeed a major milestone, though one that hasn’t necessarily led to a flood of black coaches across the league over the decades. Still, he notes the Celts have since hired four black coaches. Can you name them? Answers are in Esteban’s piece.


Kentucky Republican tries to nudge local GOP lawmakers into supporting automatic voter registration

Saying automatic voter registration is safe and accurate, former Kentucky Secretary of State Trey Grayson, a Republican, is in Massachusetts lobbying local GOP legislators to support a House bill that would allow the Registry of Motor Vehicles and MassHealth to automatically register citizens, reports Shira Schoenberg at MassLive. “I want to shore up support on the Republican side, because it ought to be a good bipartisan initiative,” said Grayson.


Pressley rejects corporate PAC donations, urges Capuano to do the same

From Michael Levenson at the Globe: “Boston City Councilor Ayanna Pressley said Wednesday that she will not accept corporate donations in her race against Representative Michael E. Capuano, a pledge designed to paint the 10-term Somerville Democrat as beholden to special interests. Pressley said she would encourage Capuano to join her in refusing donations from corporate political action committees.” Capuano, so far, isn’t responding.

Boston Globe

LPL Financial to pay Mass. and other states $26M to settle securities case

From Greg Ryan at the BBJ: “LPL Financial has agreed to pay a total of $26 million to Massachusetts and other states to end allegations that it failed to prevent the sale of unregistered securities to its clients. Under the settlement agreement, the Boston-based financial broker-dealer (Nasdaq: LPLA) will pay $499,000 to each state and U.S. territory.”


Realtors push back, hard, against Baker’s energy audit plan

The state’s real estate community is leaving little doubt as to where it stands on Gov. Charlie Baker’s proposal to require energy audits of homes that are put up for sale, Christian Wade reports in the Eagle-Tribune. The Mass. Realtors Association told lawmakers at a hearing the move would have a chilling effect on an already tight housing market and may keep some would-be sellers from putting their homes up for sale. 

Eagle Tribune

Educational Program on Guardianship in West Roxbury

Guardian Community Trust

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


As Longfellow construction wraps up, a push to make bridge more bike-friendly – WGBH

Boston makes little progress on school breakfast goal – Boston Globe

Steve Wynn’s ex warns could sell Everett casino – Boston Herald


Northampton City Council to consider asking state legislature to lower voting age to 16 – MassLive

How the ‘red flag’ gun bill came to be – CommonWealth Magazine

Quincy eyes more roadblocks for Long Island bridge – Patriot Ledger

Pittsfield City Council petition calls on Berkshire Medical Center to give payment-in-lieu-of-taxes – Berkshire Eagle


President repaid hush money, Guiliani says – New York Times

Many Democrats call for ‘new blood’ in House leadership – Washington Post

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