Happening Today

Walsh announcement, Starbucks in North End, and more

— Boston Mayor Martin Walsh makes an ‘age-friendly business designation’ announcement, Local 338 Bagels, 1727 Centre Street, West Roxbury 11 a.m.

— Senate plans to meet without a calendar, Gardner Auditorium, 11 a.m.

— North End restaurateur Damien DiPaola, one of the local business owners and residents fighting a proposed Starbucks in the neighborhood, is a guest on ‘Radio Boston,’ WBUR-FM 90.9, 3 p.m.

— Comedian Paula Poundstone and former U.S. Rep. Barney Frank are the special guests at a fundraiser for Jimmy Tingle, a Democrat running for lieutenant governor, Club Passim, 47 Palmer St., Cambridge, 5 p.m.

— Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate Beth Lindstrom holds a fundraising event featuring a concert from recording artist Ayla Brown, the daughter of Ambassador Scott Brown, 21 Arlington Street, Barnstable, 6 p.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.

Today’s Stories

Lawmakers move to protect public pensions of those convicted of crimes

As they say, perception is reality in politics – and this looks awful at a time when State Police are being arrested on corruption charges and when the governor is saying convicted troopers should have their pensions stripped. From Matt Stout at the Globe: “State lawmakers are pursuing widespread changes to the state’s pension laws that could allow former public employees to keep a portion of their taxpayer-funded benefits even after they have been convicted of job-related crimes. Spurred by a series of controversial high court decisions, the proposal has won the approval of a key legislative committee, and, if passed and signed into law, it would mark a dramatic change to how each of the state’s 100-plus public retirement systems handles benefits of criminally convicted retirees.”

Supporters say discussions on the bill started long before recent allegations against state troopers.

Boston Globe

Meanwhile, state trooper pleads guilty, more indictments reportedly on the way

From the AP at WBUR: “A former Massachusetts state trooper has pleaded guilty to receiving overtime pay for shifts he didn’t work. Court documents unsealed Tuesday show 47-year-old Gregory Raftery pleaded guilty to embezzling money from a state agency receiving federal funds.”

Gintautas Dumcius at MassLive reports that the head of the Massachusetts State Police plans to inform the state retirement board of Raftery’s conviction, getting the process started on possibly stripping him of his pension — unless lawmakers think otherwise, of course.

Meanwhile, from Scott Croteau at MassLive: “Indictments against at least 10 more Massachusetts State Police troopers accused of stealing overtime money by writing phony tickets and skipping shifts are expected in the near future, MassLive has learned.”

Obnoxious crowd control: T eyes glass barriers and doors on subway platforms

To combat riders who push their way onto trains while other riders try to get off, the MBTA is looking at possibly installing glass walls and sliding doors on subway platforms to bring more order and civility to the train-boarding process, reports the Globe’s Matt Stout. Knowing the true inner nature of Mass-holes, we have our doubts about whether this or any other plan can work.

Boston Globe

Just in case: Getting rid of an archaic anti-abortion law on the books

Universal Hub’s Adam Gaffin was harping on this issue the other day, i.e. how the state still has a 19th Century anti-abortion law on the books, a sensitive subject these days now that the future of Roe v Wade is uncertain due to the resignation of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy. The Globe’s Joshua Miller reports that some legislators are now ready to scrub that old law from the books. “The threat is there,” said Senate President Harriette Chandler.

Dearest of readers: The dreaded civil war did not come to pass yesterday

The Globe’s Jaclyn Reiss has a fun story on the Twitter reaction to conservative talk show host Alex Jones’s tweet that Democrats planned to launch a civil war on July 4. The responses were written in Ken Burns-like “Civil War era-esque prose,” starting off with liberal activist Amanda Blount’s tweet: “My Dear John, The war isn’t going as planned. Our supply trucks are limited. I’m out of wine and sunscreen. … ” The only thing missing was the PBS ‘Civil War’ soundtrack.

Boston Globe

Getting stoners off the couch and into the voting booths …

The Herald’s Joe Battenfeld writes about a group trying to perform the rough political equivalent of herding cats, i.e. organizing stoners to register and actually vote for pro-pot candidates in elections.

Boston Herald

Warren buffs up her presidential resume with Iraq visit

U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren has wrapped up her fact-finding trip to the Middle East – and Liz Goodwin at the Globe and Dan Atkinson at the Herald can’t help point out the trip also served to polish Warren’s presidential credentials as she eyes a possible White House bid in 2020. The experts say the trip was a smart move by Warren.

In Afghanistan, Mass. state Rep. is promoted to Army major

Westfield state Rep. John Velis, who is in the midst of an Army reserves deployment to Afghanistan, announced on July Fourth that he’d been promoted from captain to major, Jim Kinney reports at MassLive. The Democrat, who began his six-month deployment in June, is running unopposed for re-election in November. 


Vineyard shunning, Part II: The ex-friends strike back

Alan Dershowitz’s lament that he’s getting shunned on Martha’s Vineyard has gone national, with stories both in the New York Times and the Washington Post. The Globe’s Mark Shanahan, meanwhile, reports that, yes, there are those on Martha’s Vineyard who can no longer stand being in the same room with the Harvard lawyer due to his recent legal defense of President Trump. Then again, the Herald’s Sean Phillip Cotter reports that Ernie Boch Jr. is riding to Dershowitz’s defense, as are other residents of Martha’s Vineyard. The Globe’s Nestor Ramos pulls out the small violin for the Dersh.

And the winners of this year’s Muzzle Awards are … Maura Healey, Bill Evans, Colleen Garry and others

Dan Kennedy at WGBH has unveiled his annual New England Muzzle Awards, which go to those institutions who, in some way or another, diminished free speech over the past year. First on the list is, of course, the big guy with orange hair. But it also includes Attorney General Maura Healey, Boston Police Superintendent Bill Evans, Rep. Colleen Garry, the city of Cambridge and others.

Meanwhile, Harvey Silverglate and Nathan McGuire at WGBH present their separate Campus Muzzle Awards. UMass Boston, Tufts, Northeastern and Brandeis are among those taking the top non-honors.


ACLU sues Cambridge over charging rally organizers for police costs

Speaking of free speech, the ACLU of Mass. is suing the city of Cambridge over its policy of requiring public rally organizers to pay for public safety services connected to their events, saying it could chill free speech and deter political participation, Marc Levy reports in Cambridge Day.  The suit was filed on behalf of two groups that organized a local version of the Women’s March in January. 

Cambridge Day

‘Weaponizing the First Amendment’

Still on the subject of free speech: The NYT’s Adam Liptak has a piece about how conservatives today are using First Amendment legal arguments to advance their conservatives agenda, with last week’s major U.S. Supreme Court rulings on public unions and California abortion centers the latest examples of their ‘weaponizing the First Amendment,’ in the words of liberal Justice Elena Kagan.

The story’s headline (‘How Conservatives Weaponized the First Amendment’) and the top of the piece exhibit more than a little bias against conservatives (it is the NYT after all). But it settles down and gets into the interesting history of how both liberals, under the Warren Court, and conservatives, under today’s court, have used the First Amendment to advance their respective causes over the decades – and how past cases brought by liberals have come back to haunt them. Liptak explains.


The incredibly shrinking newspaper industry: It’s not just the Herald

OK, one last media-related post. The Globe’s Evan Horowitz has the numbers showing the brutal decline of the newspaper industry since the advent of the Internet. How bad is it? Worse than anything seen by the coal, steel and fishing industries, he writes.

On abolishing ICE: Markey, yes, Capuano, no

U.S. Sen. Edward Markey is joining Congressional candidate Ayanna Pressley and U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren in calling for eliminating the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency, saying ICE has turned into a “massive deportation army” that needs to be “dismantled and reconstructed,” reports Tori Bedford at WGBH. But U.S. Rep. Michael Capuano, who faces a tough primary battle against Pressley, isn’t jumping on the eliminate-ICE bandwagon, saying that changing “policies being enforced are more important than the agency enforcing them,” reports Dan Atkinson at the Herald.

On another immigration-related front, Nika Elugardo, who is hoping to unseat Democrat Rep. Jeffrey Sanchez, is pressuring Sanchez, as head of the House Ways and Means Committee, to support a Senate budget measure that would effectively declare Massachusetts a sanctuary state, reports SHNS’s Andy Metzger (pay wall).

Will white ‘urban newcomers’ tilt the race to Pressley?

Speaking of Michael Capuano and Ayanna Pressley, David Bernstein at WGBH reports how young, white, urban millennials played a key electoral role in Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s upset Congressional victory last week in New York – and how the same voting group last year helped Lydia Edwards defeat Stephen Passacantilli in a city council race in Boston. So could the same urban gentrifying millennials help Pressley defeat the incumbent Capuano in the Seventh District? Bernstein says Pressley still faces an uphill battle against Capuano, but millennial voting trends are definitely altering election dynamics here and elsewhere.

Btw: The Globe’s Michael Levenson reports Capuano seems to be getting a “little testy” these days with all the Ocasio-Cortez and ICE questions fired his way.


Capuano has highest paid staff in Congress

Another reason for Michael Capuano to get testy with the media. From Paul Singer at WGBH: “Rep. Michael Capuano pays his employees very well. In fact, the 10-term Somerville Democrat has the highest average staff salary of any lawmaker in the United States Congress, either House or Senate. The mid-range salary in Capuano’s office was $81,000 last year, according to a website called Legistorm.com that tracks congressional spending records. The mid-range for all congressional staff was about $51,000.”


More ‘horror stories’ from the RMV front

The Globe’s Shirley Leung has more ‘horror stories’ about long Real ID waits at the Registry of Motor Vehicles – and she’s not exaggerating. The stories really are horrible, not to mention ridiculous.

How dare they question our patriotism …

So WalletHub has declared that Massachusetts ranks 50th in patriotism in the United States – but there’s more than a few local people who either A.) don’t care what WalletHub has to say or B.) mildly object to the notion that those from the land of Lexington & Concord, Bunker Hill and the New England Patriots could possibly be unpatriotic. The Herald’s Jordan Frias and Sean Phillip Cotter have the patriotic rebuttals and shoulder shrugging.

‘Cop Pool Karaoke,’ Part II

Speaking of patriotism, country music star Brad Paisley was obviously impressed with Boston police officers Kim Tavares and Stephen McNulty’s stirring rendition of ‘God Bless America’ on their hit ‘Cop Pool Karaoke’ video. So impressed that he’s invited them to appear with him on stage at his show in Mansfield in August. Alejandro Serrano at the Globe has more.

It’s now the law: Baker signs ‘red flag’ gun bill

He did it. From Shira Schoenberg at MassLive: “Massachusetts on Tuesday became the 11th state to adopt a ‘red flag’ law, allowing someone’s gun to be confiscated if they pose a risk of harming themselves or someone else. Gov. Charlie Baker signed a law establishing a process for judges to issue extreme risk protection orders. … Even in a state like ours, which has made tremendous progress on this issue, when there’s more to do, we do it,’ Baker said.”

Fyi: Our headline the other day on Baker’s plan to sign the bill inaccurately stated the bill signing would occur next week. Our apologies.


Candidate for Rosenberg’s seat drops out, blames John Olver’s endorsement of rival

This sounds like a pretty lame excuse. From Mary Serreze at MassLive: “One of six declared candidates for Massachusetts Senate in the Hampshire, Franklin & Worcester District has withdrawn from the race. David Morin, of Amherst, who had pledged to run a completely self-funded campaign, announced Tuesday that he would bow out of the Democratic primary for the vacant seat once held by Stan Rosenberg, D-Amherst, who resigned on May 3. In a statement, Morin said he was ‘surprised’ when former congressman John Olver issued an endorsement of Jo Comerford, and ‘very surprised” that Olver described a rival write-in candidate as the only contender capable of doing the job well.”


Meanwhile, Shelburne’s Baker declares ‘independence,’ drops out of 1st Franklin race

Shelburne Selectman Andrew Baker used the July Fourth holiday to announce he was dropping out of the crowded race for the 1st Franklin state representative seat, the Greenfield Recorder reports. Baker said he was “declaring his independence” after consulting with his family and urged supporters to back Congressional aide Natalie Blais, who is one of seven Democrats still in the race for the seat being vacated by Stephen Kulik.

Greenville Recorder

Birmingham and Weld: State is ‘veering away’ from high education standards

Former Senate President Thomas Birmingham and former Gov. Bill Weld celebrate the 25th anniversary of the 1993 Education Reform Act. Yet, in a Globe op-ed, they express alarm that Massachusetts appears to be “veering away from the combination of funding, standards, and accountability that has brought so much success.”

Judge orders FEMA to continue hotel subsidies for displaced hurricane victims

From Brad Petrishen at the Telegram: “A federal judge in Worcester has extended until July 23 an order requiring the government to continue paying hotels to house Puerto Ricans who were displaced by Hurricane Maria. The order on Tuesday comes a day after a group of displaced residents, including several living in Worcester, argued in court  that the Federal Emergency Management Agency was unlawfully terminating their housing assistance.”


Cynthia Nixon, running for New York governor, plans Northampton fundraiser

After all, it’s just over the border. From MarySerreze at MassLive: “Former ‘Sex and the City’ star Cynthia Nixon, who hopes to unseat New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo in the Democratic primary, will appear at a Western Massachusetts fundraiser. The event is set for Thursday evening at the Iron Horse Music Hall in Northampton, and those who attend are asked to donate anywhere from $25 to $100.”


UMass researchers had key role in pot study, even though they were a little rushed

Dusty Christensen of the Daily Hampshire Gazette talks to the UMass researchers who were in large part responsible for the headline-grabbing study that found one in five Mass. residents had used marijuana in the last month. The scientists say they see long-term value in the baseline study, which will help state leadership assess the impacts of legal marijuana, though they acknowledge the report was pulled together quickly to be released ahead of the advent of legal recreational pot sales. 


Riverwalk Ribbon Cutting Agenda

12:00PM – 12:30PM • Governor to tour Riverwalk’s Historic Wood Mill Building, including the new Riverwalk West residences. • The tour will be led by Sal Lupoli, President and CEO of Lupoli Companies and will include Governor Baker, Mayor Rivera and guests. 12:35 – 1:00PM • Speaking program by Governor Baker, Mayor Rivera and Sal Lupoli. • Ribbon cutting by Governor Baker.

Lupoli Companies Riverwalk West

Candidate’s Forum: Jeffrey Sanchez and Nika Elugardo (Suffolk 15th District)

On July 9th, JP Progressives, Our Revolution Boston, NAACP Boston, and Amplify LatinX will host a forum with State Representative Jeffrey Sanchez and Nika Elugardo, his challenger to represent the Suffolk 15th District in the Massachusetts House of Representatives.The Suffolk 15th District includes parts of Jamaica Plain, Mission Hill, Roslindale and Brookline.

JP Progressives, Our Revolution, NAACP Boston, Amplify LatinX

Elected Officials, Business Leaders, and Transportation Advocates to Make Case for Regional Ballot Initiatives at Massachusetts State House

MAPC, PVPC and T4MA will host a discussion of the potential impact and benefits of Regional Ballot Initiatives.


Space Spotlight at Pier 4

Join NAIOP on Pier 4’s expansive rooftop terrace as we hear from Jessica Hughes, Brooks Brown and Dave Wilkinson.

NAIOP Massachusetts

The Climate Action Business Association’s Annual Cookout

Join the Climate Action Business Association for an evening of grilled cuisine, refreshments, and lawn games. Learn what our organization has been involved with this year, and engage with fellow member businesses and environmental professionals

The Climate Action Business Association

5th Annual Strategic Internal Communications–East Coast

For the past 4 years this highly anticipated conference has continued to bring over 100 internal communication professionals together to benchmark best practices. Together, over 3 days, attendees have brainstormed solutions for their biggest challenges, shared cost-effective resources, and gained an inside look at internal communication strategies from leading organizations.

Advanced Learning Institute

South End By Foot: A NAIOP Summer Walking Tour

Visit some of the South End’s most exciting commercial & residential projects, including completed developments & those to come. Following a presentation by Jonathan Greeley of Boston Planning & Development Agency, attendees will be guided on a walking tour to hear from developers of the Flower Exchange, Harrison /Albany Block Developments & AC Hotel / 7INK by Ollie at Ink Block.

NAIOP Massachusetts

Suffolk County Candidate’s Forum: District Attorney & Registry of Deeds

Please join Boston’s Ward 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, and 19 Democratic Committees for a joint forum with the candidates running for Suffolk County District Attorney and Suffolk County Registry of Deeds.

Boston’s Ward Committees (Wards 8,9,10,11,12, and 19)

CFO of the Year Awards 2018

Don’t miss your chance to meet & learn from Boston’s top CFOs at the 10th annual CFO of the Year Awards!

Boston Business Journal

Today’s Headlines


S. Boston man launches challenge to Ianella in Governor’s Council race – Dorchester Reporter

If you see Marty Walsh in the Merrimack Valley anytime soon, here’s why – Boston Globe


Mass. business confidence dropped sharply in June, survey shows – Boston Business Journal

Worcester aims to shame illegal dumpers – Telegram & Gazette


Trump Insists No Other Americans Allowed Into Putin Meeting – New York Magazine

Senate Intelligence Committee agrees that Putin meddled to help Trump – Bloomberg News

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