Happening Today

Constitutional Convention, Stanley Cup seventh game, and more

— The Gaming Commission meets to receive updates and take several votes related to the planned June 23 opening of Encore Boston Harbor in Everett, 101 Federal St., 12th floor, Boston, 10 a.m.

— Boston Mayor Martin Walsh with Boston Police and City of Boston officials host a press conference to share public safety preparations ahead of Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final, Noyes Park (on the basketball courts), 86 Boardman St., East Boston, 10:15 a.m.

Massachusetts Prescription Drug Affordability Coalition hosts a day of action during which advocates and consumers will share their struggles to afford prescription medication, with Rep. Christine Barber and Sen. Jason Lewis attending, Ashburton Park entrance, 10:45 a.m.

Governor’s Council holds its weekly assembly with vote is possible on Gov. Baker’s nomination of Michael Doolin as a Superior Court judge, Council Chamber, 12 p.m.

— House and Senate members meet in a Constitutional Convention to take up an amendment adding a 4 percent income surtax on household income above $1 million, i.e. the ‘millionaire’s tax,’ House Chamber, 1 p.m.

— The Cannabis Community Care and Research Network will hold a press conference to rebut concerns about the Cannabis Control Commission’s social equity program, State House well, Beacon St., Boston, 2 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

Go Bruins!

As the Globe’s Tara Sullivan writes, the only thing better than a Game 7 is a Game 7 at home – and Boston is most definitely bracing for the huge Bruins-Blues showdown tonight for the Stanley Cup. The BBJ’s Greg Ryan reports that tickets for the game are now approaching Super Bowl-level prices.

The Herald’s Tom Keegan reports that the Bruins are focusing on only one thing: Winning the Stanley Cup, not winning a third championship in one year for Boston. But Boston fans are certainly hoping for both – and all the glorious let-’em-hate-us bragging rights that would come with a victory tonight.

Governor and legislative leaders agree to delay paid-leave tax

They have a deal. SHNS’s Matt Murphy (pay wall) and the Globe’s Jon Chesto report that Gov. Charlie Baker, Senate President Karen Spilka and House Speaker Robert DeLeo have reached an agreement to delay for three months the implementation of the new paid-leave tax, after the business community, unions and paid-leave activists all agreed that starting the employer tax on July 1, as planned, would likely lead to confusion. The Senate could vote on the delay as early as today. The BBJ’s Gintautas Dumcius has more.

MBTA to launch third-party probe after the latest T derailment

MBTA General Manager Steve Poftak announced yesterday that he wants an outside agency to investigate the agency’s recent rash of train derailments, the latest being yesterday’s Red Line debacle that caused commuter havoc across the region, reports the Herald’s Sean Philip Cotter and Brooks Sutherland and SHNS’s Michael Norton (pay wall).

There’s actually a lot of T derailments that need investigation — 43 of them over the past five years, to be precise, for one of the worst derailment records in the nation, reports the Globe’s Vernal Coleman and Matt Rocheleau. Still, Gov. Charlie Baker remains confident that the T is headed in the “right direction” with long-term fixes on the way, reports the Globe’s Matt Stout and Christina Prignano.

Other headlines following yesterday’s Red Line disaster: “Boston chamber head calls transit issues a ‘crisis’” (Boston Business Journal) and “MBTA general manager defends July 1 fare hikes” (MassLive).

Can anything put a dent in Baker’s popularity?

One would think the latest T-derailment controversy might hurt Gov. Charlie Baker – and the Herald’s Howie Carr certainly hopes so, in a column this morning headlined “Charlie Baker fits this state to a T.” 

Still, we found it interesting that a new Suffolk/Globe poll, released earlier this week, shows that Baker’s popularity remains sky-high in Massachusetts and that two-thirds of voters say he should run for a third term in 2022, something the governor is mulling. Granted, the poll was conducted before the latest T debacle. But we doubt it would have made much of a difference. SHNS’s Michael Norton and Chris Lisinski (pay wall) have more on the Suffolk/Globe poll data in general.

Boston Herald

The pro-impeachment movement: Is it losing steam?

Amid all the survey data about the presidential race and education funding contained in the recently released Suffolk/Globe poll, there was this nugget tucked in Christina Prignano’s Globe piece: About 49 percent of Massachusetts voters say the House shouldn’t seriously consider impeaching President Trump, while 42 percent say they’re in favor.

And now comes the Washington Post, which reports that “pro-impeachment Democrats are struggling to make their case for ousting President Trump to a wary public.” Among other things, it seems that a recent trip-down-memory-lane hearing focusing on the “historical lesson” of Watergate didn’t help matters.

Washington Post

Seth Moulton: The Kamikaze Kid

Bill Beuttler at Boston Magazine has a big piece on U.S. Rep. Seth Moulton’s quixotic bid for the White House. From Beuttler: “Moulton may well have gone from being the right guy at the right moment to being the white guy at the wrong moment. Worse still, observers predict the ghost of Nancy Pelosi will come back to haunt Moulton on the campaign trail. Across the country, that’s the only thing most voters know about him, if they know him at all.”

Boston Magazine

Lawmakers seek relief from frivolous record requests

There are actually two problems: A.) Frivolous public-record requests. B.) Non-frivolous public-record requests denied or delayed by public officials. Lawmakers yesterday focused on the former, as reported by SHNS’s Kaitlyn Budion.

SHNs (pay wall — free trial subscription available)

Bay State man donates letters from Anne Frank’s father to Holocaust Museum

The AP’s Philip Marcello reports that Ryan Cooper, a 73-year-old antiques dealer and artist in Massachusetts, has donated to the Holocaust Museum in Washington dozens of post-war letters he received over the years from the father of Anne Frank, the young Holocaust victim immortalized by her moving diary entries written before her capture by Nazis during World War II.

Associated Press

The white elephant of all white elephants: Firm tapped to re-develop long abandoned tech building along Pike

The long vacant “Boston Tech Center” – that sad and lonely looking facility sitting along the Pike – may soon, finally, get redeveloped. The BBJ’s Catherine Carlock reports Harvard University has tapped Berkeley Investments to redevelop the Lincoln Street property that’s sat mostly empty for nearly 20 years, setting some sort of white-elephant record, we assume. Hopefully, the project includes a bulldozer.

BBJ (pay wall)

Darrell Jones found not guilty in murder retrial

From WBUR: Darrell Jones, who served more than three decades in prison for murder, until a judge tossed his conviction in 2017, has been found not guilty in his retrial. Jones, who always maintained his innocence and said he refused a plea deal, was originally convicted of the 1985 slaying of Guillermo Rodriguez in Brockton.”


Single-payer supporters gain strength on Beacon Hill – but apparently not enough strength

WGBH’s Mike Deehan and the Globe’s Priyanka Dayal McCluskey report on the single-payer health debate on Beacon Hill, which included a hearing on the issue yesterday. The bottom line: Support for a single-payer health system (and/or “Medicare for All”) may be growing on Beacon Hill, but it’s also getting solid push-back from lawmakers – even from those who say they back the idea.

The latest cannabis-industry entrant: Celtics legend Paul Pierce

Former Boston Celtics start Paul Pierce is shooting for new glory, partnering with Eaze Wellness to launch “The Truth CBD Remedies.” CBD is short for cannabidiol, a “non-psychoactive cannabis plant extract that can be used to treat trouble sleeping, stress and pain relief,” reports Michael Bonner at MassLive.


Policy-wonk Alert: Offshore wind companies wary about administration’s transmission-line idea

This is a true clean-energy policy wonk issue, but it’s an important clean-energy policy wonk issue. From SHNS’s Colin Young: “The Baker administration wants to look into the potential of having one underwater transmission line that could feed electricity generated by multiple offshore wind farms into the regional power grid, but that plan got a cool reception from offshore wind executives attending an industry conference in Boston this week.”

The bottom line: Offshore wind farm operators are concerned about costs and overbuilding. We also suspect they want to retain 100 percent control over matters. 

SHNS (pay wall — free trial subscription available)

Marty strikes back

Whether he’s making a stronger case or digging a deeper hole, we’re not sure. But UMass president Marty Meehan clearly remains concerned about that tuition-freeze proposal tucked into the Senate budget, a measure he says in a Globe op-ed would “effectively upend UMass governance and the fiduciary role of the board of trustees.”

Boston Globe

The Myrtle the Turtle Solution: Shade

This is most definitely not a policy-wonk issue, to wit: The city of Boston seems determined to save the new Myrtle the Turtle sculpture tucked in a small Beacon Hill playground/park, an adorable sculpture that’s literally too hot for adorable kids to safely sit on while playing. The probable solution: Lots of shade, as in trees, a canopy or whatever. Jim Foley at WBUR has the details. 


Everett woman wins lawsuit over methadone treatment in prisons

From Tori Bedford at WGBH: “An Everett woman has won a lawsuit to continue methadone treatment for heroin addiction while in federal prison, a legal victory the Massachusetts ACLU hopes will set a precedent for inmates with opioid use disorder.”


How about Sal first saying, ‘I’m sorry’

We missed these two op-eds yesterday in the Globe. The first is by Joan Vennochi, who says former House Speaker Sal DiMasi should be saying “I’m sorry” before claiming constitutional victimhood over Secretary of State Bill Galvin’s rejection of the ex-convict’s application to lobby on Beacon Hill.

Meanwhile, state Auditor Suzanne Bump says it’s time for the state to spend more on education for foster children caught up in the seemingly never-ending cycle of going from one school to the next.

Boston Globe

State House hearing on abortion fires up both sides

The debate over abortion rights will arrive full force at the State House next Monday, as opposing groups put out the call to action ahead of a legislative hearing on the pending “An Act to Remove Obstacles and Expand Abortion Access,” reports Lisa Kashinsky at the Herald.

Boston Herald

Streaking into the sunset: Lynnfield’s ‘naked firefighter’ to retire

The Lynnfield firefighter who made national headlines in April when witnesses said he walked naked into a Rhode Island convenience store to buy a can of soda will retire next month, Thomas Grillo reports at the Lynn Item. John Walsh, who is 60 and has been on administrative leave since the day of the incident, still faces trial in the Ocean State on disorderly conduct charges.

At the time, Walsh reportedly told police he did the streak-and-shop thing on a dare from his girlfriend.

Lynn Item

Inspector General: Public college trustees need Auditing 101 lessons

Sooner or later someone might actually listen to him. From SHNS’s Chris Lisinski (pay wall): “Pointing to school funds a former Westfield State University president allegedly misspent, Inspector General Glenn Cunha urged lawmakers Tuesday to back his legislation that would mandate oversight training for all public higher education trustees.” Cunha has filed a similar bill in the two previous session.

Familiar plot: Lawmakers once again debate future of film tax credit

Here we go again. A legislative committee heard testimony Tuesday on a bill that would make permanent the state’s film tax credit program, despite an outcry from some groups who say each job the program creates costs the state more than $100,000, Christian Wade reports at the Salem News. 

Salem News

Better late than never? New Bedford sues over opioids

New Bedford has become the latest city in Massachusetts to sue opioid manufacturers and distributors over the costs of the drug crisis sweeping the region and nation. But some members of the city council are wondering why it’s taken so long to take action, according to a report at South Coast Today.

South Coast Today

Oh, that theater? Ownership claim scuttles plan to sell orphaned movie theater

Finally, someone has stepped forward to claim ownership of the Westboro movie theater complex the town had planned to sell for $5 million after it spent years trying without success to find out who it belonged to, Elaine Thompson reports at the Telegram. Selectmen have canceled an agreement to sell the theater to LAX Media because of the claim — but now hopes to at least recoup some of the more than $200,000 in back taxes owed on the Route 9 property.


Massachusetts Food is Medicine State Plan Launch Event

The event, co-sponsored by Sen. Julian Cyr and Rep. Denise Garlick, will mark the release of the Massachusetts Food is Medicine State Plan, a two-year initiative to create a vision for fully integrating food and nutrition interventions into the state’s health care system.

Community Servings and the Center for Health Law & Policy Innovation of Harvard Law School

31st Annual Charitable Golf Tournament Benefiting Heading Home

Join us for NAIOP’s 31st Anniversary Golf Tournament at The International! If you haven’t played there yet, it is a golfer’s paradise that features two award-winning 18-hole golf courses, including The Pines, designed by Robert Trent Jones.

NAIOP Massachusetts

Author Talk and Book Signing with Christine M. DeLucia

History professor and author Christine M. DeLucia will speak about her recent book, Memory Lands: King Philip’s War and the Place of Violence in the Northeast.

State Library of Massachusetts

Launching Young Leaders: An Intensive Workshop

For CRE professionals with less than five years business experience.

NAIOP Massachusetts

Suffrage Centennial Kick-Off Celebration

Kicking off a year of commemorations celebrating 100 years since the 19th Amendment was adopted in 1920, enabling women to vote.

The Women’s Suffrage Celebration Coalition of Massachusetts and The Greater Boston Women’s Vote

Today’s Headlines


At Cambridge City Hall, a push to redesign the Mass. state flag – Boston Globe

Quincy school officials won’t comment on ‘activity’ that led to resignations – Patriot Ledger


Former Hudson fire chief pleads not guilty to misusing town credit card – MetroWest Daily News

Effort to ban outdoor pot farms shot down in Cheshire – Berkshire Eagle

Robocall highlights alleged misdeeds of Mashpee tribal leadership – Cape Cod Times


Portland receives 67 asylum seekers in 2 days from southern border – Portland Press-Herald

Legal marijuana industry presses for crackdown on illegal shops in California – The Hill

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