Happening Today

‘Right to repair’ ballot initiative, O’Connell mayoral bid, and more

— U.S. Rep. Jim McGovern tours the dispensary, cultivation, and manufacturing operations of Curaleaf, the state’s largest cannabis company, Curaleaf Webster, 30 Worcester Rd., Webster, 10 a.m.

Right to Repair Coalition will submit paperwork for a ballot initiative to the attorney general’s office, with Tommy Hickey, director of the coalition, and Alan Saks, from Dorchester Tire Service, attending, Attorney General’s office, One Ashburton Pl., 20th Floor, Boston, 1 p.m.

— State Rep. Shaunna O’Connell holds press conference about her announcement to run for mayor of Taunton, Mill Pond Apartments, 240 High St., Taunton, 1 p.m.

— Attorney General Maura Healey appears on ‘Greater Boston’ with Jim Braude, WGBH-TV Ch. 2, 7 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

‘Red Flag’: Could Washington end up actually adopting a gun-control law similar to one passed in Mass.?

The heated political debate over gun control and President Trump’s anti-immigration rhetoric showed no sign of abating yesterday in the wake of this past weekend’s horrific mass shootings in Texas and Ohio. U.S. Sen. Ed Markey, for instance, said Trump is ‘morally responsible’ for inciting racial violence across the country, reports Shira Schoenberg at MassLive. Meanwhile, from Tori Bedford at WGBH: “Walsh, Rollins Criticize Mitch McConnell After Mass Shootings: ‘Do Your Job.’” And from the Globe’s Joan Vennochi: “When Trump condemns racism and bigotry, no one takes him seriously.”

Still, the Washington Post’s Amber Phillips writes that, despite the nation’s political divisions, lawmakers in Washington may actually agree on a least one thing: passing a new so-called ‘red flag’ gun control law, a measure that Trump called for yesterday and that Massachusetts lawmakers passed only last year, as Ally Jarmanning at WBUR reports.

Ohio gunman described himself as pro-Satan ‘leftist’ who supported Elizabeth Warren?

This doesn’t exactly fit the it’s-all-Trump’s-fault narrative. From the Associated Press: “A Twitter account appearing to be from the gunman who killed nine people in Dayton, Ohio, showed tweets labeling himself a ‘leftist,’ bemoaning the election of President Donald Trump, supporting Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren and encouraging people to cut fences of immigrant detention centers.”

CNN and the Washington Times have more on Connor Betts and his apparent Twitter rants that have since been taken down (but not taken down before Heavy apparently got hold of them.) The WSJ’s conservative editorial page expresses feigned hope, dear hope, that no one criticizes Warren for the action of a deranged individual. How deranged? The AP at the Herald reports that his high school classmates say he was suspended years ago for compiling a ‘hit list’ and a ‘rape list.’

Associated Press

Connecticut governor urges tribes to drop plans for a rival casino along Mass. border

The Hartford Courant is reporting that Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont is urging two Indian tribes to drop their plans to build a border casino designed to counter the new MGM Springfield casino in Massachusetts. It gets complicated, but the governor is trying to work out a deal that could lead to casino-style gambling in Hartford instead. Ray Kelly at MassLive has more on the call to drop the East Windsor casino proposal.

Hartford Courant

Rep. O’Connell: The next mayor of Taunton by planned filing-deadline default?

File under: ‘Succession planning’? Gov. Charlie Baker, a Republican, yesterday appointed Taunton Mayor Thomas Hoye as interim register of probate in Bristol County, a move that triggered state Rep. Shaunna O’Connell, also a Republican, to declare she’s a candidate for mayor – and she may be the only candidate for mayor with only a day to submit nomination papers, reports SHNS’s Katie Lannan (pay wall), who notes Hoye indicated only last week that he planned to run for re-election.

Hmm. Why does this remind us of a recent ‘succession plan’ in Massachusetts? Anyway, Charles Winokoor at the Taunton Gazette reports that O’Connell is saying she’ll be “knocking on doors” even if she runs unopposed. Not that she has to knock on doors.

The Gatehouse and Gannett merger: More ‘run-rate cost synergies’ on the way

First, the good news: The newsroom-staff-slashing Gannett won’t be acquired by the even worse newsroom-staff-slashing Digital First Media. Now, the bad news: The newsroom-staff-slashing Gannett will be acquired instead by the newsroom-staff-slashing Gatehouse Media, although Gatehouse is a little kinder and gentler than Digital First when it comes to newsroom staff slashing. Andy Medici at the BBJ has the details.

The Globe’s Jon Chesto reports that the merger between Gannett and Gatehouse, the largest newspaper chain in Massachusetts, will eventually be felt locally, as the combined firm, to be known as Gannett, inevitably pursues yet more “run-rate cost synergies,” i.e. newsroom staff cuts. 

BBJ (pay wall)

Globe union plans walkout amid ‘increasingly contentious’ contract talks

Speaking of the struggling newspaper industry, from the BBJ’s Don Seiffert: “The main union representing around 300 journalists and the business side employees at the Boston Globe are planning a lunchtime walkout on Tuesday to protest slow progress on contract negotiations, according to an email obtained by the Business Journal.”


Peter Pan bus driver charged with locking woman in luggage compartment

And we assume she didn’t get a pillow. From the Associated Press: “A bus driver has been charged with locking a passenger in the vehicle’s luggage compartment. Connecticut State Police got a 911 call at about 4 p.m. Sunday from a woman who said she was deliberately locked in the luggage compartment of a Peter Pan bus during a trip from New York City to Boston.”

The Springfield-based Peter Pan is in full damage control, as Patrick Johnson at MassLive reports.

Associated Press

In Methuen, a break-in accusation followed by an apology from mayor

We may need Woodward and Bernstein to sort this one out. Breanna Edelstein at the Eagle Tribune reports that Methuen Mayor James Jajuga last week accused a member of the city council of breaking into the office of the city clerk — where nomination papers were awaiting certification — only to retract the accusation and apologize in a follow-up email a day later. The mayor now says the city employee who originally identified Councilor James McCarthy may have mistaken someone else for him. McCarthy wants a public apology — and to see surveillance videos from city hall.

Eagle Tribune

Offshore-wind bids pushed back two weeks due to new pricing law

There seems to be a lot of delays these days when it comes to offshore-wind matters. From SHNS’s Michael Norton: “State officials are pushing back the bid due dates in the procurement of up to 800 megawatts of offshore wind energy, citing a price cap lift law signed by Gov. Charlie Baker last week. Working with electric distribution companies, the Department of Energy Resources on Monday announced the later bid submission dates, with confidential proposals now due by Aug. 23.”

SHNS (pay wall — free trial subscription available)

Weymouth compressor station review delayed again

Yet another energy-related delay! For the seventh time since 2016, the state’s Office of Coastal Zone Management has pushed back its timeline for completing its review of the controversial Spectra Energy gas compressor station in Weymouth, Jessica Trufant reports at the Patriot Ledger. Although the state only wants three more weeks, the delay could be enough to delay the start of construction until next year even if all the outstanding approvals come through on schedule. 

Patriot Ledger

So who’s the mystery pollster asking about a Kennedy run against Markey?

We missed this piece from the other day by Steve Koczela at CommonWealth magazine, where he sifts through the evidence/hints/whatever about who’s conducting surveys about possible Democratic challengers to U.S. Sen. Ed Markey. The name that keeps popping up: U.S. Rep. Joseph Kennedy III.

CommonWealth Magazine

The economy: The good news and the bad news

The latest evidence that the economy, at least as of five weeks ago, is humming along, via SHNS’s Michael Norton (pay wall): “Wages and salaries in the Boston area grew at a 3 percent pace for the year ending in June, the federal government reported. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, total compensation costs for private sector workers in the Boston area rose by 2.7 percent over the same period, compared to a 1.7 percent increase for the year ending in June 2018.”

But how much longer can it last? The Globe’s Larry Edelman has a good column this morning on the ominous market signs that the Trump administration’s trade war with China isn’t going as planned (from an American perspective).

Cape towns may not meet federal-aid targets to qualify for disaster relief

Is it a disaster or just a big mess? Towns on Cape Cod are tallying the costs of last month’s tornadoes and it looks like it will be a close call as to whether the damage is enough to qualify for federal disaster relief, Ethan Genter reports at the Cape Cod Times. Communities have until Friday to report their costs to the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency, which says the nearly $10 million public outlay threshold may be hard to meet, especially since no public buildings were damaged. 

Cape Cod Times

Big winner: Warren scores debate victory in round 2

It’s official: She won. A new poll says 30 percent of Democrats say Elizabeth Warren came out on top in the second round of Democratic presidential debates, Caitlin Oprysko at Politico reports. Eighteen percent thought Sen. Bernie Sanders ruled the debate stage while 14 percent said Joe Biden claimed the crown. Warren’s performance was also rated “excellent” by 44 percent of voters, tops in the field.


Looking for consensus on school funding: An unlikely band of players

Shira Schoenberg at MassLive takes a look at the Massachusetts Systems Initiative, which has been toiling behind the scenes to reach some sort of consensus on how to change the state’s education-funding formula. The catch: the group is made up of a bunch of “groups that don’t necessarily agree on anything.” Schoenberg explains.

Meanwhile, they’ll have to reach a consensus without Stand for Children, which will shut down its Massachusetts office later this month after 16 years of advocating for an overhaul of the state’s education-funding system, reports SHNS (pay wall).


MassFiscal urges probe of DeLeo’s credit-card charges

The watchdog group in question is the MassFiscal Alliance. From the Herald’s Mary Markos: “A watchdog group is calling on the Ethics Commission to investigate Robert DeLeo’s state-issued credit card to see if the House Speaker is spending more on food for lawmakers after the Herald reported last week the Winthrop Democrat billed taxpayers almost $5,000 for Chinese food during a budget debate in April.”

Boston Herald

RMV officials to meet with cops over lack of bad-driver notifications

From the Globe’s Matt Stout: “Registry of Motor Vehicles leaders are meeting with local law enforcement this week to discuss how the agency notifies authorities about trouble drivers, weeks after dozens of police chiefs said the RMV wasn’t regularly alerting them as required by state law.”

Separately, from CommonWealth’s Andy Metzger: “Why didn’t Deveney sound the alarm?”

Boston Globe

Saying farewell to Saoirse Kennedy Hill

The Herald’s Marie Szaniszlo reports on yesterday’s Cape funeral service for Saoirse Kennedy Hill, the granddaughter of RFK who died last week from a drug overdose in Hyannis. 

Meanwhile, check out Kevin Cullen’s column (“Courtney Kennedy and Paul Hill’s enduring agony”) from the other day, one of the most-read pieces at the Globe. Saoirse Kennedy Hill, RIP.

Boston Herald

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

Transportation and Climate Community Engagement Workshop – Chelsea

We have an opportunity to address two of our greatest challenges together — transportation and climate change.

Executive Office of Energy & Environmental Affairs, MassDEP and MassDOT

Make Our Voices Heard – “Our Fight For Healthcare”

This event is designed to discuss the disparities that Black Women, the elderly, and other underserved demographics in America face during their experiences with the American healthcare system.

The Mary J. Harris Foundation, Inc.

Commercial Leasing Onsite Course

The course will provide an overview of the commercial leasing process and educate students on pertinent leasing issues and clauses in lease transactions for office, industrial and retail.

NAIOP Massachusetts

Today’s Headlines


Defense rests in Boston Calling extortion trial after boost from former police commissioner – WGBH

Whole Foods takes another shot at acquiring a liquor license in Lynnfield – Lynn Item


Waltham company supplying DNA test kits to ICE – CommonWealth Magazine

Beleaguered Greyhound Friends seeks new kennel license in Hopkinton – MetroWest Daily News

Obama returns to Martha’s Vineyard for vacation – Martha’s Vineyard Times


How the Trump campaign used Facebook ads to amplify his ‘invasion’ claims – New York Times

Goldman Sachs no longer expects a China trade deal before 2020 election – CNBC

How to Contact MASSterList

Send tips to Matt Murphy: Editor@MASSterList.com. For advertising inquiries and job board postings, please contact Dylan Rossiter: Publisher@MASSterList.com or (857) 370-1156. Follow @MASSterList on Twitter.

Subscribe to MASSterList

Start your morning with MASSterList’s chronicle of news and informed analysis about politics, policy, media, and influence in Massachusetts. Plus, get an inside look at Beacon Hill’s hottest new job postings.