MBTA Control Board, State House leadership meeting, and more
— Boston Mayor Marty Walsh will join students to kick off the 5th Quarter summer learning initiative, which blends fun summer activities and academics, Mildred Avenue K-8 School, 5 Mildred Ave., Mattapan, 10 a.m.
— The MBTA’s Fiscal and Management Control Board will meet to discuss bus service, including a Better Bus update and network redesign, as well as review construction contracts involving the Green Line and get an update on the “Fare is Fair” commuter rail program, State Transportation Building, 2nd Floor, Transportation Board Room, 10 Park Plaza, Boston, 12 p.m.
— Treasurer Deborah Goldberg attends a groundbreaking ceremony at Blue Hills Regional Technical School, 800 Randolph St., Canton, 1 p.m.
— Gov. Charlie Baker meets with Speaker Robert DeLeo, Senate President Harriette Chandler and other legislative leaders, Speaker’s Office, 2 p.m.
— Auditor Suzanne Bump gives a talk to legislative summer interns at the State House, Room A-2, 2 p.m.
— UMass President Marty Meehan is a guest on ‘Radio Boston,’ WBUR-FM 90.9, 3 p.m.
— Governor’s Councilor Mary Hurley holds a hearing in Springfield to solicit feedback on Gov. Baker’s nomination of attorney John McKenna to the Westfield District Court bench, 1215 Wilbraham Rd., Springfield, 5 p.m.
— Mayor Marty Walsh provides remarks at the Ribbon Cutting and Community Barbecue at the renovated Fowler Clark Farm, Fowler Clark Farm, 487 Norfolk St., Mattapan, 5:45 a.m.
For more calendar listings, check out State House News Service’s Daily Advances (pay wall – free trial subscriptions available) and MassterList’s Beacon Hill Town Square below.
For whom the bells Chang, Part II: Superintendent out at BPS
After the botched school-time change in Boston late last year, the Herald’s Joe Battenfeld said it was only a matter of time before Boston School Superintendent Tommy Chang was shown the door. That time arrived last Friday, with Chang announcing he was stepping down with two years left on his contract, after one too many controversies, as the Globe’s Milton Valencia and James Vaznis report. Chang’s main problem: Communications, or lack thereof, with the community and mayor’s office, reports the Globe’s John Hilliard. The Herald’s Battenfeld says one thing is clear: Mayor Marty Walsh now owns the school department — and all its problems. There’s no Tommy Chang to blame anymore.
Report: Gov. Baker’s son accused of groping woman on airline flight
From CBS Boston, which first reported on the groping allegation: “I-Team Chief Investigative reporter Cheryl Fiandaca has learned that Governor Charlie Baker’s adult son, Andrew, has been accused of an alleged sexual assault by an airline passenger. Sources tell the I-Team the incident happened on June 20 aboard a JetBlue Flight from Washington, DC to Boston. According to sources, an adult female passenger told State Police that Andrew Baker, who is known as AJ, groped her breast on that flight. The woman, allegedly told authorities that Baker refused to stop touching her and that she needed the help of flight attendants to move to another seat on the plane.”
The governor’s office says that the younger A.J. plans to fully cooperate with officials and that the issue is a “personal matter for the Baker Family.” The latter is simply not true, not in this #MeToo era, not when it involves the State Police (see post below), not when the actions of a certain husband just recently demolished the political career of a prominent leader on Beacon Hill. Sorry, but the governor shouldn’t get a special pass on this one, not with so many public entities involved. Dan Glaun at MassLive and Danny McDonald at the Globe have more.
State Police scandals update, Part I: Lawsuit accuses Early of taking part in ‘immoral scheme’ to scrub arrest report
From Brian Lee at the Telegram: “Worcester District Attorney Joseph D. Early Jr. allegedly directed a conspiracy to order a state trooper to scrub salacious details from a police about the October arrest of a Dudley judge’s daughter, according to a civil lawsuit that added the DA as a defendant Friday. Filed in Suffolk Superior Court on behalf of state Trooper Ryan N. Sceviour, the complaint alleges Mr. Early led an effort to defame the trooper and, as the county’s top law enforcement official, he unlawfully tampered with court documents concerning the Oct. 16 arrest of Alli Bibaud.”
State Police scandals update, Part II: Overtime, all the time
The Globe’s Kay Lazar reports on yet another lucrative overtime gig that’s been available to state troopers: Emergency Response Station postings, where the pay is all overtime, all the time, costing taxpayers $13,000 a day and millions of dollars a year.
In a reversal, Healey gives towns more power to slow down pot-industry rollout
Marijuana advocates and businesses are denouncing Attorney General Maura Healey’s decision to give more power to cities and town to slow down the rollout of recreational pot in communities, ruling that local officials can unilaterally ban cannabis firms for another year without polling residents, reports the Globe’s Dan Adam. It represents a reversal by Healey – and it’s most definitely a setback for the marijuana industry.
Warren and Trump are trading rhetorical blows again
Put U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren and President Trump in the same state and what do you get? Almost non-stop rhetorical sniping, as was the case in Nevada over the weekend, complete with the president’s now familiar “Pocahontas” insult. The New York Times has the blow-by-blow details.
Clark, Capuana and Warren descend on Texas to check up on child detention centers
U.S. Reps. Katherine Clark and Mike Capuano and U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren flocked to the southern border over the weekend to see for themselves the conditions of immigrants in U.S. detention centers – and what some of them saw wasn’t pretty, i.e. adults and children locked behind chain-link fences and sleeping on concrete floors, with officials unable to provide answers about when families would be reunited. Scott Croteau at MassLive, Liz Goodwin at the Globe and Shannon Dooling at WBUR have more. Btw: Jordan Frias at the Herald has a piece on Clark’s ‘I really do care’ fashion statement during the trip.
As state’s Congressional members tour Texas, ICE focuses on local government offices (again)
From Olivia Quintana at the Globe: “Immigration officials in Massachusetts may once again arrest undocumented immigrants who show up for appointments at government offices, marking the reversal of a February directive that had halted the practice, according to a filing Friday in US District Court in Boston. The policy change was revealed in an affidavit filed by Rebecca Adducci, who took over June 7 as interim director of US Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Boston field office.”
After border-patrol flip flops, has Baker jeopardized state’s chance of landing U.S. Army center?
Speaking of immigration matters, Peter Lucas at the Herald writes that Gov. Charlie Baker’s flip flop over sending National Guard troops to the southern border “practically guarantees” that Boston won’t be getting that coveted U.S. Army research command center. He makes a good point, particularly on the timing of Baker’s moves.
Former Gaming Commission member: Let casinos and maybe even the Lottery handle sports betting
Lloyd Macdonald, a retired Superior Court judge and former member of the state Gaming Commission, says the state already has legal horse-racing, slots and, soon, casino gambling, not to mention the Lottery and fantasy-sports gaming, so it only makes sense to proceed with legalized sports betting, as long as the taxes are set at the right level and existing casino licensees and possibly the Lottery handle the sports books.
Bernie may be drawing crowds, but he isn’t winning what counts
The New York Times has a piece on how Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, one of two progressive darlings of the left (the other being U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren), isn’t turning his personal popularity into primary wins for candidates that he’s endorsed. “For a figure of his prominence, who may run for president a second time in 2020, the midterm elections could represent a significant missed opportunity if Mr. Sanders fails to usher any allies into high office.”
Progressive groups taking on Neal in First Congressional
Progressive groups know who they want in the First Congressional District primary: Tahirah Amatul-Wadud, who’s trying to unseat long-time incumbent Richard Neal, as Shannon Young reports at MassLive. Perhaps progressives may have more luck than Bernie Sanders had had in primaries, with emphasis on the word “perhaps.”
Galvin flexes multimillion-dollar campaign muscles
Here’s another primary race in which an incumbent Dem is facing an upstart progressive, i.e. Secretary of State Bill Galvin versus City Councilor Josh Zakim. But Galvin, who holds a big campaign-fund advantage in the race, is starting to flex his muscle in the racing, hiring a new communications consultant and planning to open up several state campaign offices, reports the Globe’s Matt Stout.
Rufus Gifford’s corporate connections, courtesy of his dad
Third Congressional District candidate Rufus Gifford has tapped into a rich vein of campaign funds, i.e. the corporate and civic network tied to his father, Charles ‘Chad’ Gifford, former head of FleetBoston Financial, chairman emeritus at Bank of America and either a current or past director at firms and institutions such as CBS Corp. and Partners HealthCare. The Globe’s Matt Stout reports Gifford has raised more than $87,000 from executives and board members with connections to his dad.
Romney says he will continue to criticize Trump only on issues of ‘substantial significance’
That’s a big caveat for a person like Mitt Romney, who’s not exactly known for his consistency on issues. The Hill has more on the former Massachusetts governor who faces a contested GOP primary election tomorrow in his race to become Utah’s next U.S. senator.
‘The Last Little Italy’ vs. Starbucks in North End showdown
Rocco Capano and others don’t want no Starbucks baristas in their neighborhood. So they’ve launched a new video, entitled ‘The Last Little Italy,’ to make their case that Starbucks doesn’t belong in the North End, or at least not in such a prominent location on Hanover Street. The reaction of Starbucks and the property owner, Charter Realty? They’ve launched their own Facebook page and petition, reports the North End Waterfront, via Universal Hub.
Harbor Towers tenants to state: No more waterfront towers!
A true NIMBY-irony moment. From Catherine Carlock at the BBJ: “The board of trustees of the Harbor Towers, two residential towers next to the downtown Harbor Garage, have taken the first steps toward suing the state over its approval of a downtown plan that would allow for a skyscraper to be built on Boston’s waterfront. The board’s notice of violation comes a day after the Conservation Law Foundation, a Boston-based environmental advocacy group, notified state officials of its intent to file a lawsuit against the state-approved Downtown Municipal Harbor Plan.”
Boston sex-trafficking detective says she was discriminated against by BPD
From the Herald’s Dan Atkinson: “The head of the city’s sex trafficking unit says her own police department created a hostile working environment, discriminated against her and retaliated when she complained, according to a scathing lawsuit filed in federal court. Lt. Detective Donna Gavin, the widely recognized leader of the Human Trafficking and Crimes Against Children units, filed a civil suit against commanding officer Capt. Detective Mark Hayes and the Boston Police Department and is seeking damages for emotional distress and lost wages.”
Harvard asks for dismissal of Asian-American discrimination suit
The plaintiffs want the judge to make a summary judgment in their favor. The defendant wants the judge to dismiss the case in their favor. Since it can’t be both, it’ll be interesting which way, if at all, the judge rules in the high-profile Harvard admissions-discrimination suit filed on behalf of the Asian-American students. We suspect neither request will be granted – and this one is headed to trial unless there’s a settlement.
Stormy storms Springfield
She came, she saw, she sold out in Springfield. Says striptease promoter Tony Long on the porn star’s attraction to female strip-club customers: “She is seen as a strong, articulate woman in an industry where most of the people are easily dismissed. … I think she is seen as strong on women’s rights.” Yes, he really said that. Dave Canton at MassLive has more.
Btw: Stormy was due in Manhattan today to prepare for a potential grand jury appearance about a $130,000 payment from President Trump’s attorney in exchange for her silence about an alleged affair with Trump, but the meeting was called off because of too much publicity, the Washington Post reports.
‘I am so lost. I’m so hopeless. I’m so worthless. I’m so lazy. I’m so …’
This is such a hard article to read. Written by the Globe’s Mark Arsenault, it’s about a young teen, Alexandra Valoras, who had so much going for her in life and yet who ended up taking her own life. Her parents are sharing her journal so others might better detect their own children’s inner, hidden anguish before it’s too late. As of this morning, it was the most-read story in the Globe.
In Framingham, a police lawyer’s private and public work overlap
A lawyer assigned to the Framingham Police Department has represented scores of clients of his private practice in legal court cases while on city time—sometimes using a city vehicle in the process, Jim Haddadin of the MetroWest Daily News reports, citing an investigation of court records and hearing transcripts. Brian Simoneau, who earns more than $100K a year as an assistant to the city’s police chief, tells the paper he has been standing permission to work on private cases as long as he makes up his time working for the city.
Gun club’s ‘bio-sludge’ plan has residents up in arms
Residents in Granby are pushing the town’s board of health to ban an artificial topsoil product made from recycled sewage and industrial waste that a local gun club wants to use to revegetate wetlands it cleared to build one of the largest rifle-shooting ranges in the region, Sarah Robertson reports in the Daily Hampshire Gazette. The mixture the club wants to use includes ‘biological sludges,’ food processing waste and wastewater recovered from the Erving Paper Mill. Hey, what could go wrong?
Cape charity for slain K-9 cop marred by theft of auction items
Police in Barnstable say a Hyannis woman made off with a box full of items slated to be auctioned to raise money in support of the Yarmouth police department at an event held in memory of Sean Gannon, who was shot to death while on duty in Aprill. Maureen Wiggins will face larceny charges after police say the missing items turned up in the trunk of her car, Tanner Stening reports at the Cape Cod Times.
Sewage Pollution Right to Know Bill (S.2394)
Join leaders in the legislature, municipalities and the recreation and conservation community for a one-hour session on legislation that would inform the public when there is a sewage spill in their area.
Climate Crisis Action Summit
Senator Ed Markey invites you to the Climate Crisis Action Summit.
Boston Neighborhood Bike Forum
This gathering is meant to bring together Boston residents to connect, share, learn and envision what biking could be in our neighborhoods. The day will include discussion, information sharing, networking and skill building.
Kennedy Library Foundation’s NFN Summer Celebration
Spend your Wednesday evening on the Kennedy Library’s ocean-front patio overlooking the Boston skyline & harbor, while enjoying delicious food, beverages, live music, lawn games & more!
ADL’s Glass Leadership Institute Happy Hour & Info Session
Come join us to learn about ADL’s Glass Leadership Institute and meet GLI alumni and ADL staff! Light refreshments will be provided. Registration required at http://www.adl.org/BostonGLIHappyHour
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