Senate ed-bill debate, ‘Latinx Excellence’ and more
— Gov. Charlie Baker, Secretary of Veterans’ Services Francisco Ureña, Undersecretary of Housing and Community Development Janelle Chan and local officials to participate in a ceremonial groundbreaking of Envision Bank Home for Veterans, 21 Moulton Street, Randolph, 10:15 a.m.
Baker administration drops ‘bombshell’ analysis on eve of Senate education debate
And it looked like it would just sail through the legislature. From SHNS’s Matt Murphy: “A day before the Senate is scheduled to open its debate on a $1.5 billion education funding reform bill, the careful rollout by Democratic leaders began to unravel Wednesday after the Baker administration shared its town-by-town analysis of the bill’s impacts on school funding. The breakdown provided to members of the press and lawmakers who had requested the information landed like a bombshell.”
Murphy and the Globe’s Victoria McGrane and Matt Stout report that leading Democrats are questioning the accuracy, and the motives, of the administration’s last-minute data dump, the timing of which, we’re sure, was just another coincidence. MassLive’s Shira Schoenberg reports on how some communities win, while others lose (sort of), according the administration’s analysis of the school-aid legislation.
Pass or fail: Colleges face strict penalties under House financial-disclosure bill
Speaking of education, the state’s college stress tests could lead to other types of stress for high-education institutions. From SHNS’s Chris Lisisnki (pay wall): “Colleges and universities in Massachusetts could face significant fines or lose their ability to issue degrees for failing to implement financial transparency measures under a bill the House unanimously approved on Wednesday.”
Shira Schoenberg at MassLive has more on the legislation that would “let the state keep a closer eye on the financial conditions of the state’s colleges and universities” in the wake of the recent Mount Ida College closure fiasco.
After a sleepless night, Goldberg decides not to run for Congress
As the Globe’s Matt Stout reports, everything was ready: The bumper stickers, the campaign committee, the announcement details, etc. But state Treasurer Deb Goldberg, 65, has ultimately decided she won’t be running for Joseph Kennedy III’s congressional seat. A nearly sleepless night apparently helped her reach a decision.
SHNS’s Matt Murphy (pay wall) has more on Goldberg’s surprise decision to stay put in the treasurer’s office. Meanwhile, Newton City Councilor and former U.S. Marine Jake Auchincloss is apparently throwing his hat into the ring for Kennedy’s seat.
Btw: Have you ever made a major sleepless-nights decision? Most of us have. The ultimate confirmation you’ve made the right decision: Sleeping like a lamb the night afterward. It’s pretty amazing – the sense of relief, the weight off your shoulders, etc.
Not giving up: Dan Koh polling in 3rd Congressional District
Treasurer Deb Goldberg may be ruling out a run for Congress in the state’s Fourth District. But the Herald’s Lisa Kashinsky reports that Dan Koh, who narrowly lost last year’s Dem primary contest in the Third District, isn’t giving up on his congressional dreams, as he polls the district and further tests the waters for a potential rematch against U.S. Rep. Lori Trahan.
Was Haymarket’s ‘garbage’ art treated like mere garbage by DOT?
It’s not up there with the Isabella Stewart Gardner art-heist mystery. Still, some are wondering what happened to the street “garbage” sculptures ripped out of the ground near Haymarket by a contractor working on crosswalks for the state Department of Transportation, reports Andy Metzger at CommonWealth magazine.
Tax the hail out of ‘em: Lawmakers eye Uber as revenue source
Lawmakers are mulling several proposals to tax ride-hailing services such as Uber to help local communities deal with traffic and to boost public transportation, Christian Wade reports at the Salem News. One bill could raise as much as $42 million a year with state and local assessments. Uber and Lyft are already on record opposing the moves and say they’re not to blame for all the traffic congestion.
Bernie’s health scare: An unfortunate boon to Warren
As harsh as it sounds, news that Bernie Sanders, 78, has temporarily suspended his presidential campaign, as a result of heart problems, is leading, once again, to debate over health and age issues in the Democratic race – and how Bernie’s medical woes may end up helping Elizabeth Warren, although she herself is a 70s-something candidate. The Herald’s Lisa Kashinsky and the Globe’s James Pindellhave the details.
The Herald’s Joe Battenfeld is brutally blunt: “With his presidential effort now derailed indefinitely and his poll numbers sagging, it’s doubtful the 78-year-old Sanders can recover in time to slow down Warren.”
Btw: Even before the Sanders news broke yesterday, a newly released national poll showed Warren leading the Dem primary field, pulling ahead of Joe Biden, yet another 70s-something falling star in the race, reports The Hill
‘Silicon Valley billionaires’ strange new respect for Elizabeth Warren’
Wait a second. Weren’t technology titans, like Mark Zuckerberg, supposed to be in lock-step opposition to Elizabeth Warren becoming president? Not so, according to a report at Vox, which finds that some Silicon Valley types are grudgingly coming around to the idea that Warren may be the only alternative to Donald Trump.
Meanwhile, the Globe’s Joan Vennochi writes that, yes, Mark Zuckerberg is right to say Warren would ‘suck’ for Facebook if she’s elected president and that, yes, Warren gleefully welcomes attacks from powerful people like Zuckerberg. But she says Warren can’t win if too many economic titans hate her – and if voters end up agreeing with those titans that she’s a threat to the economy.
Btw: Warren is making yet more establishment enemies. Via Politico: “Warren proposes tax on ‘excessive’ lobbying .”
Regulators to Fall River: Can you please re-certify those pot deals signed by your indicted mayor?
It’s complicated. The Cannabis Control Commission has asked Fall River to ‘recertify’ that local businesses that were given community host agreements actually meet legal requirements — but the city’s lawyer says he’s not sure how to respond to the request, Jo C. Goode reports at the Herald News. Some of the deals are now tangled up in the federal corruption indictment against Mayor Jasiel Correia and one of the agreements the CCC wants vetted again is for the only operating adult use pot shop in the city.
Meanwhile, the only recreational pot shop in the metro Boston area says it is experiencing a marijuana flower drought and is blaming a testing bottleneck for the shortage, Colin Young reports at State House News Service (pay wall).
Seven killed in crash of vintage WWII bomber owned by Stow foundation
The plane is owned by the Collings Foundation in Stow. The foundation also recently opened new armored-vehicle museum in nearby Hudson – and one has to wonder whether its annual “Battle for the Airfield” re-enactment will be held later this month.
Edgartown and Vineyard Wind settle undersea cable dispute
Now if only Vineyard Wind can get the Trump administration to approve its offshore project. From Noah Asimow at the Vineyard Gazette: “Vineyard Wind and the Edgartown conservation commission have comes to terms in a dispute over the construction of two heavy-duty underwater cables, as the nation’s first industrial-scale offshore wind farm moves through an extensive permitting and construction process.”
Ed Logue’s development legacy: Good, bad, mixed?
Attention fellow urban sidewalk superintendents: At the Wall Street Journal, Alex Beam reviews Harvard professor Lizabeth Cohen’s new book on legendary Boston (and New York) re-development czar Ed Logue, “Saving America’s Cities: Ed Logue and the Struggle to Renew Urban America in the Suburban Age.”
The book is being touted as a more balanced look at man who over the decades has been both reviled and praised for his urban re-development projects, including the tearing down of Boston’s Scollay Square to make way for Government Center.
Add freshwater problems to Cape Cod’s growing list of woes
Sharks. Climate change. Now this. Poor Cape Cod. From Miriam Wasser at WBUR: “More than two-thirds of Cape Cod’s embayments, or shoreline indentations, and one-third of its freshwater ponds have serious water quality issues, a new report finds. The report out Wednesday, from the nonprofit Association to Preserve Cape Cod, paints a picture of a region-wide coastal and freshwater problem.”
Philadelphia ruling could boost safe-injection push in Massachusetts
From SHNS’s Chris Lisisnki (pay wall)i: “In a ruling that may create momentum behind the idea in Massachusetts, a federal judge ruled Wednesday that supervised consumption sites, where individuals could use pre-acquired drugs under medical watch without facing arrest, would not violate a section of the Controlled Substances Act as government prosecutors alleged.”
Among others, Sen. Cindy Friedman said the Pennsylvania decision “gives us momentum in Massachusetts to move our harm-reduction site pilot forward.” Bobby Allyn at WBUR has more on the federal ruling.
Will the appeal of the Harvard discrimination case be heard by Harvard judges?
WGBH’s Esteban Bustillos has an interesting follow-up story to this week’s ruling by a federal judge that Harvard didn’t discriminate against Asian-American students in its admissions policies, to wit: Half of the judges who could hear an appeal of the case went to Harvard either as undergrads or as laws students.
Meanwhile, Deirdre Fernandes at the Globe reports that questions still linger over how Harvard effectively rates Asian-American students. And the Herald’s Michael Graham is going out of his way to pick a fight with the Globe and a Globe columnist over the Harvard ruling.
State takes ‘baby step’ toward reining in RTAs
It’s only a ‘baby step’ by MassDOT. Nevertheless, the agency’s recently signed agreements with regional transit authorities represent an attempt to rein in local RTAs by “laying out baseline figures for a variety of performance and financial metrics, and setting targets in each category for the next two years,” reports Bruce Mohl at CommonWealth magazine. in discretionary grants.
Otis is out as DOT narrows new Pike exit options for Berkshires
Not here and maybe not anywhere. MassDOT has eliminated a site in Otis from its list of potential new exits from the Mass Pike and mounting local opposition may put the entire idea of filling a 30-mile gap between exits on the shelf, Jim Kinney reports at MassLive. At $38 million, the Otis option was the most expensive being considered. Attention will now focus on two locations in Blandford.
Never Mind: Gomes withdraws from New Bedford mayoral race
New Bedford City Councilor Briam Gomes has withdrawn from the race for mayor, scrambling the results of Tuesday’s preliminary election, Kiernan Dunlop reports at the Standard-Times. Gomes had tried to leave the race over the summer but was told it was too late to get his name off the ballot. The move means the third-place finisher, Richard Tyson Moultrie, who won about 11 percent of the preliminary vote, with face incumbent Jon Mitchell, who won 57 percent of Tuesday’s ballots, in November.
Starr Forum: Iran Reframed
A discussion about the evolution of the Islamic Republic and its reaction to President Trump’s Iran strategy
In Pursuit of Equity, Accountability and Success: Latinx Students in MA
In Pursuit of Equity, Accountability and Success (PEAS) seeks to unite multiple systems and sectors around community, policy, and practitioner-centered solutions to addressing the current system of unequal outcomes in educational attainment and institutional treatment. There will be 10 workshops and we will have three dynamic speakers.
Worcester State University, University of Massachusetts Boston, American Student Assistance in collaboration with DESE, EEC, and DHE, The Worcester State University Latino Education Institute (LEI) and Department of Urban Studies, UMass Boston Gaston Inst.
Boston Speakers Series: John Kerry
Kerry served as United States Secretary of State during President Barack Obama’s second term. He represented Massachusetts in the United States Senate for nearly thirty years, and was the Democratic Party’s nominee for president in 2004.
Discussion: Building Urgency and Political Will
There are many policy solutions that could have impact, but their viability is challenged by the lack of urgency and broad political will that is needed to get municipal leaders to lead on a crisis that their constituents may not currently feel.
Forever at Home – An Evening to Celebrate and Support Boston Senior Home Care
Boston Senior Home Care’s Annual Fundraiser will be held at the beautiful Mandarin Oriental in Boston’s Back Bay neighborhood on October 16, 2019. This annual event raises about $175,000 each year for BSHC thanks to our sponsors, donors and attendees. The event is a fun night filled with music from Boston’s own Rich DiMare, delicious food and drink, and amazing auction items to bid on!
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