Happening Today

Budget signing, Governor’s Council, House and Senate sessions

— Gov. Charlie Baker, Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito and Secretary of Administration and Finance Michael Heffernan gather for the governor’s signing of the fiscal year 2020 budget, Room 360, 10 a.m.

Governor’s Council meets twice today, the first to interview Kimberly Foster, who was nominated by Gov. Baker as clerk magistrate of the Somerville District Court and the second take possible votes on the governor’s nominations of Catherine Ham as a Boston Municipal Court judge in the Dorchester Division and Nella Lussier as clerk magistrate of the Housing Court’s Metro South Division, Council Chamber, 9 a.m.and 12 p.m., respectively.

— The Senate and House meet in formal session, in what is expected to be the final formal House session of the summer, with representatives expected to take up children’s health legislation that House Speaker Robert DeLeo has proposed, 1 p.m.

— Gov. Charlie Baker attends an event to unveil battery-powered electric Silver Line buses in Boston, with Transportation Secretary Stephanie Pollack and MBTA General Manager Steve Poftak attending, Southampton Bus Garage, 230 Southampton St., Boston, 3:30 p.m.

— Ten of the 20 candidates seeking the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination will gather in Detroit for the second round of debates this week, including former Vice President Joe Biden and U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris, Fox Theatre, 2211 Woodward Ave., Detroit, 8 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

Clash of the Progressive and Moderate Titans

The Globe’s Liz Goodwin called it before the debate: Moderate candidates indeed went after progressive darlings Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders during last night’s Democratic presidential debate, putting on full display the growing ideological rift between centrists and leftists within the party. The New York Times and the Washington Post have the details, as does, of course, Goodwin at the Globe and also Lisa Kashinsky at the Herald,

So who came out on top last night? WGBH’s Peter Kadzis and Adam Reilly think Warren and Sanders were the clear winners. The NYT agrees that Warren and Sanders “owned the night.” But the Globe’s James Pindell is not so sure about Sanders, arguing that Warren clearly outshined him. He also says that Montana Gov. Steve Bullock last night clearly established himself as a centrist force in the primary contest.

They were warned: RMV officials were told months before fatal NH crash about shoddy record keeping

How do you spin this? Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles officials were told months before the recent fatal crash in New Hampshire that the agency’s driver violation records were a complete mess and not even close to being updated, according to testimony at yesterday’s RMV oversight hearing, as reported by Steph Solis at MassLive, Matt Stout and Danny McDonald at the Globe, and Andy Metzger and Bruce Mohl at CommonWealth magazine.

Other damning headlines from yesterday’s legislative hearing: “Testimony shows disarray within RMV over driver violations” (SHNS –pay wall) and “Understaffing and new software blamed for RMV failings” (SHNS – pay wall

And, oh, the Herald’s Howie Carr notices that Gov. Charlie Baker was conveniently in Washington D.C. again yesterday, apparently talking to federal officials about the Cape Cod Canal bridges, as reported at SHNS (pay wall).

State to fast-track review of Edgartown’s rejection of Vineyard Wind permit

This must be one of Gov. Charlie Baker’s “cure plan” measures. From SHNS’s Michael Nortion: “As the $2.8 billion Vineyard Wind project fights for a key federal approval, the Baker administration, which is openly pushing the offshore wind farm, plans to swiftly decide on the developers’ appeal of an important permit denial by the Edgartown Conservation Commission.”

No public hearing will be held on the appeal. Instead, there will be a conference call today on the matter. In other words: Yeah, they’re moving fast on this one.

SHNS (pay wall — free trial subscription available)

Is Trahan hearing Koh’s footsteps behind her?

Political columnist Peter Lucas writes at the Lowell Sun that it sure looks like U.S. Rep. Lori Trahan’s recent decision to back impeachment proceedings against President Trump had something to do with public pressure applied by Dan Koh, her former Democratic primary rival in the Third District. And we’d add it sure looks like Koh has more on his mind than just tending to his Andover selectman’s duties.

Lowell Sun

‘Too Hot’: The subway and bus ads that the T doesn’t want you to see

Ally Jarmanning at WBUR takes a look at the ads that the MBTA has rejected as inappropriate for display on subways, buses and station walls. Some of the rejections are close calls, but we have no problem with the general policy of prohibiting overtly sexual and politically partisan ads — as long as the policy is applied fairly to everyone.


Amherst professor: Is America headed for civil war the day after the 2020 election?

He’s not talking rhetorical civil war. He’s talking about the real thing. Austin Sarat, a professor of jurisprudence and political science at Amherst College, writes at WBUR that President Trump and Democrats need to openly state they are constitutionally committed to a peaceful transfer of power after the 2020 election, no matter who wins the presidency, or “we may find ourselves (perhaps in the streets, perhaps not) in a new civil war.”


Former slot machine technician at MGM Springfield accused of swiping $22,000

From MassLive’s Scott Croteau: “A former slot machine technician at MGM Springfield has been indicted after authorities accused him of stealing nearly $22,000 from the casino. Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey said a Hampden County Grand Jury has indicted Salvador Montalvo Jr., 54, of West Springfield, on charges of larceny of property over $1,200 and making false entries in corporate books.”

British student-dorm developer buys up huge chunk of Davis Square

Attention all those who like Davis Square just the way it is: The Globe’s Tim Logan and the Herald’s Sean Philip Cotter report that British student-housing developer Scape has snapped up key parcels in the heart of the hip and local-oriented Davis Square in Somerville – including the sites of the popular Burren pub and McKinnon’s meat market.

Scape isn’t divulging its plans, but it has said in the past it wants to invest $1 billion or more in private student housing in the Boston area. Our question: They couldn’t buy properties on the periphery of the square, rather in the heart of the popular district?

Question of the day: Should the state require marijuana delivery drivers to wear body cameras?

Shira Schoenberg at MassLive reports on a controversial proposal that would require future pot-delivery drivers to wear body cameras when they drop off weed at people’s homes. The Cannabis Advisory Board, which advises the Cannabis Control Commission, yesterday officially recommended that the commission drop the body-camera idea.


About 90,000 residents in Massachusetts could lose food-stamp benefits under Trump plan

Anna Kusmer at WGBH reports that the Trump administration’s proposed rule changes to the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) could lead to 90,000 people in Massachusetts losing food-stamp benefits.


Robert who? Clark says McConnell’s defiance pushed her over the impeachment line, not Mueller’s testimony

U.S. Rep. Katherine Clark may have come out in favor of an impeachment inquiry just hours after Special Counsel Robet Mueller’s underwhelming testimony before Congress last week, but she tells the Atlantic’s Elaine Godfrey that it wasn’t anything he said that moved her to action. Clark, who as a member of the House Democratic leadership team was seen as a significant get for pro-impeachment lawmakers, says Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s unwillingness to take up legislation to protect the country’s election systems is what ultimately pushed her to support impeachment.

The Atlantic

State creates $1M fund to help Cape businesses hit by tornadoes

From the Associated Press at CBS Boston: “Gov. Charlie Baker has announced emergency financial help for Cape Cod businesses recovering from last week’s tornados. Baker said Tuesday the new $1 million Cape Cod Small Business Emergency Loan Fund will provide small businesses loans for operation and repair costs.”

CBS Boston

Baker’s $18 billion bond bill: Game changer or same old game?

The Globe’s Shirley Leung identifies the pluses and minuses of Gov. Charlie Baker’s new $18 billion transportation bond bill, generally concluding it’s inadequate for what’s needed.

Boston Globe

Flashback: Alan Dershowitz defends op-ed written two decades ago on lowering age of consensual sex

Talk about something you’ve said or written in the past coming back to haunt you. In this case, it’s Harvard law emeritus professor Alan Dershowitz, who’s now defending an op-ed piece he wrote in 1997 suggesting that the age of consent for statutory rape should be lowered. The Globe’s Martin Finucaneexplains. Hint: It has to do with this New Yorker article on Dershowitz and his connections to, among others, accused child sex abuser Jeffrey Epstein.

Here we go again: Auto repair coalition eyes another ballot question

From SHNS’s Matt Murphy: “Bolstered by new poll numbers that show strong support, a coalition of auto repair and parts shops is preparing to take the first step toward putting a question on the 2020 ballot that would require car manufacturers to make digital repair information easily accessible.”

SHNS (pay wall — free trial subscription available)

Tying a $4,700 Chinese takeout order is lawmakers’ exemption from public records law

The Herald’s Joe Dwinell reports that House Speaker Robert DeLeo spent $4,745 in taxpayer money for a Chinese takeout spread for House members as they debated the state budget in April – and the Herald is using the expenditure as an opportunity to club the legislature over the head for exempting itself from public records laws. Mary Connaughton and Dwinell have sidebar pieces about … accountability and lawmakers’ support for a local-journalism bill?

Hey, we’re just aggregating. We’re not the ones connecting the dots.

Boston Herald

Saugus selectmen want indicted member to resign

Don’t go away mad–just go away. Members of the Saugus Select Board want Mark Mitchell, who pleaded not guilty last week to charges he helped steal $1.7 million from the Boston Center for Adult Education, to resign, Bridget Turcotte at the Lynn Item reports. At least one board member raised the prospect of a recall election to remove Mitchell, who ironically was first elected to the board as part of a sweeping 2015 recall campaign.

Lynn Item

Devils in the details: Lawmakers tweak financial filings after questions raised

Dusty Christensen at the Daily Hampshire Gazette digs through statements of financial interests filed by Pioneer Valley lawmakers and finds several potential conflicts, some of which the legislators moved quickly to address. At least two lawmakers amended their reports when questioned on items such as ownership of fossil fuel stocks or other holdings in interests who also lobby legislators. 


Busted: State says Charlton board violated meeting law in pot farm talks

They messed up, but then they fixed it. The office of Attorney General Maura Healey says the Charlton select board violated the Open Meeting Law twice last year when they approved a deal to bring the largest marijuana cultivation facility in the country to a former apple orchard, Debbie LaPlaca reports at the Telegram. But the AG’s office says that says no remedial action is required because of a public forum that was held two weeks later after a public outcry.

NAIOP @ Night at Alcove

Join NAIOP at Alcove, a modern neighborhood restaurant on Lovejoy Wharf that is a welcoming port on the edge of Boston’s West End. Expand your network and develop valuable business relationships while enjoying signature drinks and appetizers.

NAIOP Massachusetts

Democratic Debate Watch Party!

Looking for a fun way to get involved? Let’s eat, drink, and talk politics! Not normally recommended, but we’re making an exception. Join us to watch the next round of the Democratic Debates with both old and new friends at one of Needham’s favorite spots, Cappella Restaurant. They are staying open late just for us, so come hungry and thirsty and help make it worth their while!

Claire Hoyt + Kritika Storer

Rugelach with Ruth

Representative Balser will join us at a home in Newton for an intimate discussion on immigrant justice and progressive issues. Your ticket to this event is a donation of any amount, which will go to support JALSA’s efforts to create a more just, compassionate, and equitable society. Your invitation for our Rugelach with Ruth Balser will be emailed to you once a donation has been made.

Jewish Alliance for Law and Social Action

2019 Summer Institute in Global Leadership: Advanced Public Speaking

This advanced institute brings together older students who are passionate about global issues and aspire to be in leadership roles that demand advanced communication skills.

United Nations Association Of Greater Boston

Democracy School: Central Mass.

Effective organizing takes knowledge and skills. To build and execute a successful campaign, you need to set clear goals, build strong partnerships, and engage your target audience with a compelling message. It’s hard, time-consuming work. And it’s how we change the world.

Massachusetts Immigrant and Refugee Advocacy Coalition

Sail Away with NAIOP: 9the Annual Harbor Cruise

Join NAIOP as we sail away on the Annual Summer Harbor Cruise. Come dressed in your summer whites to savor incredible harbor views aboard the Spirit of Boston.

NAIOP Massachusetts

Democracy School: Merrimack Valley

Effective organizing takes knowledge and skills. To build and execute a successful campaign, you need to set clear goals, build strong partnerships, and engage your target audience with a compelling message. It’s hard, time-consuming work. And it’s how we change the world.

Massachusetts Immigrant and Refugee Advocacy Coalition

David & Ben’s BBQ for Annissa (Essaibi George running for reelection to the Boston City Council at-Large)

David and Ben invite you to our house for a summer BBQ to hear from Annissa Essaibi George as she runs for reelection to the Boston City Council as an at-large councilor.

David Brown and Ben Perkins

Codman Square Health Center Public Annual Meeting 2019

Join Codman Square Health Center as we honor U.S. Representative Ayanna Pressley and Boston Police Commissioner Willie Gross. We’ll hear about current issues in health care, the role that community health centers play, and a recap of Codman’s accomplishments over the past year.

Codman Square Health Center

Today’s Headlines


Archdiocese of Boston hires fundraising firm – Boston Herald

Traffic at Logan is about to get worse and Massport wants you to know it – Boston Globe


At Cape planning summit, future is climate change – Cape Cod Times

Lottery will determine order of candidate names in Fall River mayoral election – Herald-News

Lawsuit accuses for-profit colleges of deceptive practices – Telegram & Gazette

Special detail officers help improve business climate in downtown Framingham – MetroWest Daily News


Trump’s pick for top intelligence post overstated parts of his biography – New York Times

The simple math that should keep Republicans up at night – Washington Post

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