Happening Today

Tuesday elections preview, MBTA meeting, and more

— Secretary of State William Galvin holds a pre-election availability, a day before voters are scheduled to cast ballots in municipal elections across the state, Room 116, State House, 11 a.m.

MBTA Fiscal and Management Control Board meets with tentative plans to discuss and vote on a major investment in the future of the commuter rail system, State Transportation Building, 10 Park Plaza, Boston, 12 p.m.

— Gov. Charlie Baker, Senate President Karen Spilka, House Speaker Robert DeLeo, Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito, Senate Minority Leader Bruce Tarr and House Minority Leader Brad Jones, privately meet, Speaker’s Office, 2: p.m.

— Boston Mayor Martin Walsh is a guest on ‘Radio Boston,’ WBUR-FM 90.9, 3 p.m.

— Gov. Charlie Baker attends an election eve rally for state Rep. Shaunna O’Connell, who is running for mayor of Taunton, Liberty & Union Ale House, 16 Trescott St., Taunton, 5:30 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.

Today’s Stories

Warren’s health-care plan: Does it add up?

In case you didn’t hear, U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren on Friday proposed a $20.5 trillion plan to pay for ‘Medicare for All,” via more taxes on the rich and businesses. Danielle Kurtzleben at WBUR reviews the details of Warren’s revenue proposals.

Paul Krugman, the Nobel Prize-winning economist and NYT columnist, thinks Warren’s payment plan passes the legitimacy test — though he doubts it will ever pass Congress. But Krugman seems to be in the minority in his guarded praise. Joe Biden, Pete Buttigieg and Bernie Sanders are all slamming the plan, reports the Globe’s Jess Bidgood and the Herald’s Rick Sobey, with Sanders’s criticism perhaps being the most subtly biting, as the Washington Post reports.

Meanwhile, the Globe’s Larry Edelman has a good column on what Warren’s proposal would mean for Massachusetts, whose economy depends so much on the health-care and life-sciences sectors. Hint: Not good. Btw: SNL has also weighed in on the matter, reports Scott Croteau at MassLive.


Polls: Warren leads in Iowa, but Biden still a factor elsewhere

This is interesting: A New York Times/Siena College poll shows Elizabeth on top in the Dem presidential contest in Iowa, followed by Bernie Sanders, Pete Buttigieg and a fading Joe Biden in fourth. But don’t stick a fork in Biden’s campaign quite yet. A new Washington Post-ABC poll shows him still clinging to a national lead. We’d rather be leading in Iowa and/or New Hampshire, frankly, since an early win in one of those states can sway a lot of primary voters in other states. It’s all about momentum, state by state, not national polling .

Btw: The Globe’s Liz Goodwin has a good piece on how Warren, who initially stumbled out of the presidential-announcement gate last year, has rebounded by sticking to her bold plan of lots of bold plans.

It’s off to the TED Talks circuit for Beto

Elizabeth Warren has one less rival to worry about moving forward. Former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke, who may have initially charmed Oprah Winfrey and others, obviously didn’t charm enough voters. O’Rourke ended his presidential campaign on Friday “after struggling to translate the energy from his 2018 Senate bid into a successful White House campaign,” according to a report at WGBH. 


Don’t’ forget Tuesday’s municipal elections

Setting aside all the presidential-election news, the Herald’s Erin Tiernan has a review of tomorrow’s at-large city council election in Boston. Meanwhile, the Globe Jeremy Fox and John Hilliard have a handy-dandy voters’ guide to the council contests, while the Eagle-Tribune focuses on races in Lawrence, Methuen and Haverhill. Meanwhile, from Joe DeFazio at the Patriot Ledger: “The South Shore’s mayoral races are on track to be the cheapest in years, but some candidates are still spending big.” Btw: The Herald’s Howie Carr has his own election guide, so to speak.

Stand up for those standing up for housing

Speaking of tomorrow’s elections: In an editorial, the Globe is pushing back against local candidates riding the wave of anti-development sentiment across the state, saying those candidates who have pushed for more housing deserve voter appreciation and support, not biting NIMBY criticism and opposition.

Boston Globe

Huh? National Grid and Eversource say they don’t need controversial Weymouth compressor station

A three-reporter team at WBUR reports that National Grid and Eversource, the state’s two largest utilities, are now saying they don’t need the controversial Weymouth compressor station to meet the state’s future natural-gas needs. So the obvious question is: Then why build it?


Everett vs. Exelon: It’s about more than just taxes

Speaking of energy companies: Technically, it’s a fight between the city of Everett and Exelon over tax issues tied to the former’s power-plant complex along the Mystic River. Unofficially, it’s about the fate of property the city (and Wynn Resorts and possibly the Kraft Group) covets for a future entertainment district. The Globe’s Jon Chesto has the details.

Boston Globe

Never mind: Peterson ends bid to take down Moulton

She’s getting out before the fun even gets started. Salem City Councilor Lisa Peterson has ended her primary bid against U.S. Rep. Seth Moulton in the state’s 6th Congressional District, Dustin Luca reports at the Eagle-Tribune. Among the reasons cited: Waning public interest in a competitive race. Perhaps it’s a sign that anger against Moulton for his anti-Pelosi position after the 2018 election has started to fade? 

Eagle Tribune

As California goes, so goes Massachusetts on gas taxes?

The Herald is on an anti-gas-tax jihad these days, going all out over the weekend against Gov. Charlie Baker’s tentative embrace of the multistate Transportation Climate Initiative, which involves a non-tax tax on gas, similar to what California already has – and California drivers are now paying close to $5 a gallon, as Joe Dwinell and Laura Onyeneho report. In an editorial, the Herald isn’t happy with all the gas-tax talk on Beacon Hill these days.

Boston Herald

Don’t exhale: Times’ cautionary tale on breathalyzers cites Mass. stumbles

Yeah, we know.  The New York Times takes a look at the breathlyzer test debate and finds the DUI-gadgets just aren’t reliable. The lengthy piece leans heavily on narrative examples from the Bay State, where a judge recently halted the use of evidence from the machines in drunken driving cases. 


UMass: No longer a ‘safe school’ with humble funding needs

Ron Chimelis at MassLive reviews the financial needs of the University of Massachusetts as it emerges from its past as an unofficial “safe” school, or “back-up” school, for those applying to college and ventures into top-tier territory for public colleges. And that means more money is needed – from the state.


Baker’s health care plan: A legacy game changer?

The Globe’s Priyanka Dayal McCluskey and Matt Stout report that Gov. Charlie Baker’s health-care reform package is more than just a game changer for the state’s health-care industry. It could help shape Baker’s legacy for years to come.

Boston Globe

Nursing-home backers say they’ve collected enough signatures for ballot question

Another health-care mandate? From the Globe’s Robert Weisman: “A new group called the Massachusetts Senior Coalition said it has collected about 122,000 signatures across the state to force a referendum next year on a proposal to substantially boost Medicaid funding for the state’s financially struggling nursing homes.”

‘The Fearsome Five’: United by one common thread

Political columnist Peter Lucas at the Herald marvels how the state’s past and current political leaders, Democrats and Republicans alike, are now united on one thing: Anti-Trumpism. The ‘Fearsome Five’ includes William Weld, John Kerry, Mitt Romney, Michael Dukakis and Charlie Baker. And four of the five have had, at one point, their eye on 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.

Btw: He’s not a member of the Fearsome Five, but U.S. Rep. Stephen Lynch generally agrees with them: Trump must go. Hannah Uebele at WGBH has the details.

History repeating: Two priests suspended over ‘alleged misconduct’

The Fall River Diocese says it had suspended two priests while it investigates alleged misconduct against them, Jerry Boggs reports at the Standard-Times. The diocese suggested the allegations are “decades old” and says it has sent what it knows to the Bristol County DA’s office. We all know what the allegations are probably about, but officials aren’t talking (for now).

Standard Times

Drumroll, please: ‘The 16 worst people on the T, ranked’

We thought he was going to name names, i.e. online trolls. Instead, the Globe’s Nestor Ramos names the worst types of T riders – and it’s a good list. Our least favorite rider: ‘The Doorstop.’

Boston Globe

No tanks: Aquarium says it won’t pony up PILOT payment

The check is definitely not in the mail. The New England Aquarium says it will not be making cash payments to the city of Boston in lieu of property taxes, saying it and other nonprofit institutions already contribute enough in other ways, Colman Herman reports at CommonWealth magazine. The aquarium is far from alone in not making the payments under the city’s seven-year-old program, but its stance could embolden more organizations to follow suit.


Trooper finally gets an apology, tardy and grudgingly, it would seem

Initially, Trooper Ryan Sceviour got a simple letter and $40,000 as part of a settlement for being forced to rewrite a DUI arrest report on a state judge’s daughter. But the next day State Police Col. Kerry Gilpin did, in fact, apologize for the bureaucratic and legal hell commanders put Sceviour through over “Troopergate.” The Herald’s Joe Dwinellhas the details.

A Roadmap to Health Care Price Transparency in Massachusetts

Did you know… 7 in 10 Massachusetts consumers want access to health care price information? Join us for a lively and informative discussion on the state of health care price transparency and steps we can take to make this information more accessible.

Pioneer Institute, Treasurer & Receiver Deborah Goldberg, BCBSMA, MAHP, Undersecretary Edward Palleschi, OCABR, MA Division of Insurance

Catalyst for Change 2019

The Massachusetts Law Reform Institute (MLRI) will honor U.S. Representative Jim McGovern as the recipient of its 5th Annual Catalyst for Change Award at an annual event on November 4th. MLRI is a nationally recognized nonprofit poverty law and policy center. Rep. Jim McGovern will be honored for his leadership and work to advance policies that help people in poverty.

Massachusetts Law Reform Institute

State Library Author Talk: Richard W. Judd

Was Henry a Hippie? Locating Thoreau in a Changing Modern World: An Author Talk with Dr. Richard W. Judd

State Library of Massachusetts

Top Women of Law

The Top Women of Law event celebrates outstanding achievements made by exceptional women lawyers. Each year Lawyers Weekly honors women attorneys who have made tremendous professional strides and demonstrated great accomplishments in the legal field, which includes: pro bono, social justice, advocacy and business.

Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly

2019 Distinguished Real Estate Awards Gala

2019 NAIOP Distinguished Real Estate Awards Gala honoring MIT Investment Management Company

NAIOP Massachusetts

Suffrage 100 – Massachusetts Women at the Forefront of Change

Fredie Kay, Founder and President of Suffrage100MA, will discuss the the suffrage movement in American and Massachusetts history.


MHSA Second Annual Gala

Please join the Middlesex Human Service Agency (MHSA) on November 7, 2019, as we celebrate our second annual gala and present the G. Peter Donovan award to James J. O’Connell, MD, President of Boston Health Care for the Homeless.

Middlesex Human Service Agency (MHSA)

Race in the Public Dialogue: Understanding Criminal Justice Reform

Panelists will lead a conversation on the present state and future of criminal justice reform and mass incarceration.

Museum of African American History

EPA Region 1: Risk Assessment & Emergency Response Plan Training

The U.S. EPA will be holding a one-day training to provide drinking water utilities with detailed information on America’s Water Infrastructure Act: Section 2013 and 2018. Specifically the training will cover the new risk assessment and emergency response plan requirements.

United States Environmental Protection Agency, Water Security Division

Today’s Headlines


Major office and lab space planned for near Assembly Row – Boston Globe

Green light: First legal recreational marijuana sales in Brockton begin Tuesday – Brockton Enterprise


Diverse Worcester City Council ticket in voters’ hands Tuesday – Telegram & Gazette

Town meeting called in Provincetown to address public safety needs – Cape Cod Times

Report: Greater Worcester economy has plateaued – Worcester Business Journal


Smugglers are sawing through new sections of Trump’s border wall – Washington Post

Impeachment bears down on Susan Collins – Politico

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