Tax Day, women solidarity, and more
— Massachusetts taxpayers must file their state and federal personal income tax returns by today.
— International Women in Solidarity Conference gathers advocates to learn how women are working for gender equality and economic justice, with Reps. Elizabeth Malia, Nika Elugardo and Marcos Devers attending, Great Hall, 9:30 a.m.
— Department of Transportation’s Capital Programs Committee meets to discuss oversight of capital construction and procurement projects across the state’s transportation systems, State Transportation Building, 10 Park Plaza, Boston, 10:30 a.m.
— Massachusetts Patients Advocacy Alliance provides a legislative update on what can be done to keep the medical marijuana program best operating for patients, with Rep. Paul Tucker attending, House Members Lounge, Room 348, 11 a.m.
— Extinction Rebellion Massachusetts holds a protest calling on the Boston Globe to ‘fulfill its pledge to report the truth and take leadership in its coverage of the climate crisis,’ the Old State House, 206 Washington St., Boston, 12 p.m.
— U.S. Rep. Ayanna Pressley participates in a tax day rally, Upham’s Corner, Dorchester, 4:30 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.
‘Scoop: Seth Moulton tapes 2020 launch video’
Looks like we may soon have three Bay Staters running for president. This just in from Axios: “Rep. Seth Moulton (D-Mass.) was spotted in his hometown of Marblehead, Mass., taping for a presidential announcement that’s expected within a week, according to a source close to Moulton.”
To repeat: “Rep. Seth Moulton (D-Mass.) was spotted in his hometown of Marblehead, Mass., taping for a presidential announcement that’s expected within a week, according to a source close to Moulton.” And Axios has a photo of the taping.
God help us: Could we have yet a fourth Massachusetts candidate running for president?
Former U.S. Sen. John Kerry has said before he’s considered running again for president. But he added this to the NYT yesterday, in reference to former Vice President Joe Biden: “I want to see what Joe is going to do.” The Kerry quote was buried at the very bottom of the NYT story. So make of it what you will.
Just like 1990: Is Weld really counting on Independent voters?
As for one of the two already announced prez candidate, Morning Edition host Joe Mathieu yesterday spoke with former Gov. Bill Weld about his Republican primary challenge to President Trump – and we liked his description of “two large orange men going at each other.” But we also found it interesting that Weld appears to be counting on Independents flocking to his cause in the primary contest, sort of the way they did when he first ran for Massachusetts governor way back in 1990. Our reaction: Really? He’s really thinking that will happen? We’ll see.
Meanwhile, the Globe’s James Pindell reports that Weld plans to run a “ferocious” campaign, sort of like a fisher cat. The Herald’s Howie Carr is dying to ask Weld a simple question. It’s a cheap-shot question if there ever was one. But Donald Trump is sure to raise it (again), i.e. the issue of Weld’s past boozing.
Warren’s policy-wonk strategy: ‘The problem is, she’s going to run out of things to announce’
As for the other announced Bay State presidential candidate, the Globe’s three-reporter team of Liz Goodwin, Jess Bidgood and Todd Wallack have noticed a pattern to U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s recent campaigning: Make a major policy announcement, see fundraising go up; make a major policy announcement, see fundraising go up, etc. etc. But as one former Dem finance type notes: “I think it’s potentially sustainable, but the problem is, she’s going to run out of things to announce.”
Meanwhile, Peter Lucas at the Lowell Sun says it’s time for Warren to pack her bags and come home. We’re sure she’ll give due consideration to Peter’s advice. Or maybe not.
The rise and fall of Elizabeth Warren’s Consumer Financial Protection Bureau
Speaking of Elizabeth Warren, the NYT’s Nicholas Confessore has a big piece on how President Trump’s handpicked head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau systematically gutted the agency in the brief time he was there – and in the process gutted Warren’s hopes and vision for the agency.
Harvard deans: No more ritualistic slaughtering, skinning and roasting of goats
Delano Franklin at the Crimson reports that Harvard’s faculty deans have put an end to a decades-old Dunster House tradition of holding a “goat roast,” which includes the “slaughtering, transporting, and, in the main Dunster Courtyard, skinning the carcass of a goat with paleolithic tools.” Universal Hub’s simple headline: ‘Harvard bans dorm’s ritual goat slaughter.’
Flags ordered to half-staff to honor Sgt. Rachel R. McKay
From WCVB TV: “Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker ordered United States and Commonwealth flags at all state buildings be lowered to half-staff from sunrise until sunset Thursday in honor of U.S. Army Sgt. Rachel R. McKay. McKay, a native of Marblehead, Massachusetts, died April 8 at Fort Gordon in Augusta, Georgia. According to her obituary, the 23-year-old died unexpectedly and her death remains under investigation by the U.S. Army.”
Capitalist rebellion: Hoist the antitrust pitchforks!
Forget European-style democratic socialism. Carter Wilkie at CommonWealth magazine writes that there may be an easier way to achieve economic fairness and equality – by reforming capitalism via antitrust laws. Those already hosting the antitrust pitchforks include U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren, as Wilkie notes.
Supporters of youth tackle football rally to block proposed ban
Speaking of rebellions, from Karen Hensel and Doug Moser at NECN: “Dozens of protesters including young football players and their parents rallied at the Massachusetts State House Tuesday to urge lawmakers to reject a proposal that would ban tackling in football for young children. Kids waved signs reading ‘Kill the Bill’ and ‘Save Youth Football.’”
The Herald’s Michael Graham sees traces of old school rivalries at play in this debate: Jocks versus student-government geeks. He’s rooting for the jocks. So are we. Leave Pop Warner football alone!
A true windfall: DPU gives utilities $168M for handling offshore wind contracts
File under ‘creative accounting.’ From Bruce Mohl at CommonWealth magazine: “The Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities approved multibillion dollar offshore wind contracts with Vineyard Wind on Friday and, over the objections of Attorney General Maura Healey, authorized the state’s three utilities to collect an additional $168 million from ratepayers just for carrying the contracts on their books.” A Healey spokeswoman says the ruling sets a “dangerous precedent.”
‘Stop & Strike,’ Part IV: Joe Biden to enter the fray
Former Vice President Joe Biden, who’s contemplating a run for president, will speak to striking Stop & Shop workers at a Boston rally tomorrow, becoming the latest Dem pol to pronounce support for workers. Mayor Marty Walsh has also been asked to attend the rally, union officials add. Hmmm. Do you think Walsh had something to do with his pal Joe’s appearance? Just wondering. Anyway, Rick Sobey at the Herald has the details.
Meanwhile, the Globe’s Katie Johnston confirms that Stop & Shop stores that have remained open through the strike are mighty empty these days. The Globe’s Jaclyn Reiss reports that the company’s president, Mark McGowan, is apologizing “for the inconvenience that the strike has caused our loyal customers.” Finally, Jacqueline Vogelat the Daily Hampshire Gazette went inside a Northampton Stop & Shop and talked with an employee who quit the union so he could keep working.
Markey cranks up fundraising ahead of 2020
U.S. Sen. Ed Markey pulled in more than $950,000 in the first quarter, boosting his campaign war chest to $3.5 million as he prepares to seek re-election in 2020, Steve LeBlanc at the Associated Press reports. No one has yet stepped forward to say they’ll challenge Markey next year, although some of mentioned possibly running. LeBLanc also has a rundown of how much the rest of the state Congressional delegation has raised in recent months.
Foster kids pay the life-long price
Shira Schoenberg at MassLive has another good piece on the state’s foster-care system – and how the constant moving from one family to another has such a negative impact on foster kids later in life. As Schoenberg notes, there’s a price to be paid for the inconsistency in education, social life and support systems.
Three finalists emerge for Boston school superintendent post
The Globe’s James Vaznis has the names of the three finalists for Boston schools superintendent, a “diverse group diverse that includes a former Minnesota education commissioner, a high-ranking Miami-Dade County school district leader, and a principal at a local Catholic high school who once served as Randolph schools superintendent.”
Lawmakers to drug companies: Time to pay up for the addiction crisis you helped start
From SHNS’s Katie Lannan: “As state lawmakers prepare to debate a state budget that again calls for spending tens of millions of dollars to address addiction and substance use, one representative is offering up a plan that would have drug companies pick up the tab. Rep. James O’Day, a West Boylston Democrat, last week urged the Health Care Financing Committee to advance his bill (H 3654) to impose a new assessment on makers of opioids and benzodiazepines dispensed in Massachusetts.”
So why is Massport protecting the taxi industry?
This is a curious one: Massport has proposed new curbside rules at Logan Airport for ride-sharing companies like Uber and Lyft. But as the Globe’s Adam Vaccaro reports, the same rules don’t apply to taxis – and it’s “going to be beneficial to us,” says one cab driver. In other words: It’s favoritism. And favoritism toward an older industry that riders have clearly rejected en masse in recent years. As we said, curious.
Fall River’s pot bonanza
Fall River recently received its first 3 percent recreational host fee from Northeast Alternatives — $88,000 based on barely a month’s worth of business at the shop. “This is better than I thought,” said Financial Services Director Mary Sahady. Jo C. Goode at the Herald News has more.
Immigrants: We pay taxes too!
It’s Tax Day in Massachusetts – and immigrants at a Boston Common rally yesterday made clear it’s Tax Day for them too. Steph Solis at MassLive has the details.
Advocates to Baker: Release all of the fuel-assistance money, not some of it
SHNS’s Chris Lisinski reports that the Baker administration, under pressure, has released additional $8 million for low-income fuel assistance programs – but advocates say the governor needs to release all of the dough allocated by lawmakers, not just two-thirds of it. Lisinski has the details.
Win for Weymouth?
State orders more tests at proposed compressor site Residents battling a proposed natural gas compressor station in Weymouth have won at least a temporary victory after state officials said they would require more environmental testing at the site of the controversial station, .Jessica Trufant reports at the Patriot Ledger. Weymouth Mayor Robert Hedlund had led calls for additional testing on the property.
The odds of March: State’s casinos post solid revenue months
That’s more like it. MGM Springfield reported $25.7 million in gambling revenue in March, a nearly 20 percent increase from the month before and the most raked in since its opening month last fall, Jim Kinneyreports at MassLive. The casino sent $6.4 million in tax revenue to the state’s coffers in the process. The good news spread to Plainridge Park Casino as well, where just under $16 million in slots revenue was recorded, the best monthly tally since that slots parlor opened in July of 2015, SHNS’s Colin Young reports (pay wall).
Forget it: Framingham bags plan to move health office to senior center
Score one for the seniors. In the face of harsh pushback, Framingham officials say they’ll drop a plan to temporarily move the city’s health department to the local senior center, Jim Haddadin reports in the MetroWest Daily News. Instead, the city will solicit proposal to temporarily house part of the department during a planned renovation.
Africa & the World
Join us for an evening with Zoe Marks to discuss “Africa and the World!”
“NOVA Wonders” Cambridge Science Festival Exhibition
From the mysteries of astrophysics to the secrets of the human biome, explore exhibits, presentations, and activities from local STEM organizations based on the NOVA Wonders miniseries.
The Humanitarian Crisis at the Border and Beyond
A hallmark of President Trump’s tenure has been the demonization of immigrants and asylum seekers at the US-Mexico border. Earlier this year, partly in response to a caravan of refugees hoping to seek asylum in the United States, President Trump declared a National Emergency. Before that, he effectively shut down lawful avenues for asylum for bona fide refugees.
Hacking Public Health
Join us at the first-ever hackathon at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health! A hackathon is a time-bound “invention marathon” where people come together to learn, build, and share their creations in a supportive setting. We seek graduate and undergraduate students from diverse personal & professional experiences to cultivate a dynamic, inclusive, and innovative environment.
MIT-Harvard Conference on the Uyghur Human Rights Crisis
This conference aims to present the police state in China, where over one million innocent Uyghurs and other Turkic Muslims have been forced into concentration camps; explore China’s use of technology to escalate the crisis by conducting surveillance on the Uyghur; introduce the biopolitics of China’s “war on terror”; and open a dialogue on our role in engaging with China.
Community Conversation: Local Experiments in Land Trusts
Land trusts are an important way to make land and housing permanently affordable and to begin undoing centuries of housing segregation and discrimination. Join local leaders in activism, finance and public policy for a community conversation connected to the new Undesign the Red Line interactive exhibit.
The Environmental Science & Policy Impacts of Remote Sensing on Governance & Land Use in Tropical Forests
The Frederick S. Pardee Center for the Study of the Longer-Range Future and the Land Use and Livelihoods Initiative at the Global Development Policy Center invite you to attend an upcoming series of keynote lectures titled “The Environmental Science & Policy Impacts of Remote Sensing on Governance & Land Use in Tropical Forests.”
Harvard Healthcare Debate
US Healthcare & Drug Pricing Debate with Moderator Vivek Ramaswamy, Founder & CEO, Roivant Sciences and Panelists Peter Kolchinsky, Ph.D., Co-founder, Portfolio Manager, & Managing Director, RA Capital Management; John Maraganore, Ph.D., CEO and Director, Alnylam Pharmaceuticals; and Shawn Bishop, Vice President, Controlling Health Care Costs and Advancing Medicare, The Commonwealth Fund.
Retail’s Changing Landscape
The reports of the ‘retailpocolypse’ are far from true. Join NAIOP to learn how retail is evolving and thriving while dispelling some of the myths. Hear from expert panelists on what they are seeing here and across the country and learn how architects are helping to transform malls for the future.
Government Affairs Speaker Series featuring Congresswoman Katherine Clark
Join us for our second Government Affairs Speaker Series featuring a conversation with Congresswoman Katherine Clark. Congresswoman Clark has served as the United States Representative for Massachusetts’ 5th Congressional District since 2013.
Cannabis 101: Molecules, Markets, … Mayhem?
In 2016, Massachusetts voted to legalize recreational marijuana. We wanted laws that empower disenfranchised communities and grow a healthy stream of taxes. But not all of our dreams came true. Now that stores are opening, many of us are wondering about weed…
Offshore Wind: Power, Policy, and Promise
This is a free presentation seminar and discussion event hosted by the Center for Student Coastal Research (CSCR), a non profit organization located in Cohasset on Boston’s South Shore. CSCR educates students in environmental sciences, encourages environmental awareness, and promotes activism. Details are available at www.ccscr.org.
Public Service Symposium
The purpose of this symposium is to bring together a cross-sector of participants and their organizations to discuss the role of individuals, universities, nonprofits, and the private sector in best practices around engaging our respective populaces in civic life.
The Smart, Connected Commonwealth: Data-Driven Research and Policy Across the Region
BARI’s 2019 Spring Conference will bring together academics, policy makers, and practitioners to highlight work being conducted throughout Greater Boston as a way to share insights and methods, catalyzing inter-disciplinary, intercity collaboration in the use of data and technology.
Harvard Neurologist Rachel Bennett on the Science of Dementia
Everyone knows someone who is experiencing serious cognitive decline. Harvard neurologist Rachel Bennett will speak on the current science of Alzheimer’s and other dementias, including diagnostic and treatment options, and will take questions afterward. 60 minutes, FREE, as part of Nahant Public Library’s Dementia Friendly Nahant project.
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