Possible Vineyard Wind ruling, MBTA meeting, and more
— Federal officials could issue a record of decision for the Vineyard Wind I project, in line to be the nation’s first utility-scale offshore wind farm, as soon as today.
— U.S. Rep. Lori Trahan joins officials from Groundwork Lawrence and New Balance to celebrate their partnership to extend Lawrence’s portion of the Merrimack River Trail along the Merrimack River through New Balance’s riverfront property, with Lawrence Mayor Kendrys Vasquez among those attending, 10 a.m.
— MBTA Fiscal and Management Control Board meets virtually with an agenda that calls for discussion of the agency’s budget and capital investment plan, as well as an update on commuter rail changes aimed at achieving a regional rail model, 12 p.m.
— Federal Reserve Bank of Boston President Eric Rosengren shares his outlook for the economy during a virtual event hosted by the Newton-Needham Regional Chamber, 1 p.m.
— U.S. Rep. Katherine Clark is on ‘Radio Boston’ to talk infrastructure, gun control, and other news of the day, WBUR-FM 90.9, 3 p.m.
— Vaccine Equity Now! Coalition holds a virtual town hall to launch its #MyVaccineStory campaign, with participants including Sen. Sonia Chang-Diaz, Rep. Liz Miranda, Worcester City Councilor Sarai Rivera and others, 5:30 p.m.
For the most comprehensive list of calendar items, check out State House News Service’s Daily Advances (pay wall – free trial subscriptions available), as well as MassterList’s Beacon Hill Town Square below.
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The coronavirus numbers: 8 new deaths, 17,042 total deaths, 1,831 new cases
CBS Boston has the latest coronavirus numbers for Massachusetts.
More than 25 percent of all Mass. residents fully immunized
It’s an impressive – and welcome – number: More than 25 percent of the state’s population is now fully immunized against the coronavirus, according to a report at WCVB. That’s great news. But here’s the bad news: the vaccination effort will slow down this week due to a decrease in the number of Johnson & Johnson vaccines delivered to the state, according to another WCVB report.
Meanwhile, it’s still a race against time when it comes to vaccines and new variants, reports the Herald’s Lisa Kashinsky and Rick Sobey.
‘Jaw-dropping’: Unemployment tax bills skyrocket for many despite state relief
Beacon Hill lawmakers may have passed unemployment-insurance rate relief for businesses, but it apparently wasn’t enough relief. The BBJ’s Greg Ryan and MassLive’s Steph Solis report on “jaw-dropping” rate increases some business are experiencing, apparently tied to a “solvency assessment” that’s doubling, tripling and even quadrupling insurance rates for some companies..
Janey: Vaccinations, not vaccination passports, should be priority
Acting Mayor Kim Janey is embracing Gov. Charlie Baker’s view that public officials should be focusing on getting people vaccinated — not on possible future vaccination passports. In an interview on Keller at Large on Sunday, Janey called vaccination-passport restrictions a “slippery slope” towards inequities.
Secretary Fix-it: Marylou Sudders
Meet Secretary Fix-it, Gov. Fix-it’s secretary of health and human services and ‘center of gravity’ during the pandemic. The Globe’s Kay Lazar reports on Marylou Sudders and her crucial and largely unheralded (until now) role in shaping the state’s historic response to the COVID-19 crisis. She’s indeed one of the most powerful people in Massachusetts right now — and deserves credit for all she’s done.
They knew: Boston police kept union boss’s child-molesting charge secret for years
They knew since 1995? And yet they still allowed Patrick Rose to keep his badge, work on child assault cases and assume the presidency of the BPD patrolman’s union? Yep. Apparently so. The Globe’s Andrew Ryan has more on the bombshell revelation that Boston Police knew decades ago of charges against Rose that he had molested a child – and even concluded he had ‘likely’ committed a crime — and yet … he stayed on the job and allegedly kept molesting children.
Among many things, what intrigues us is the timeline of the pathetic saga. Think: Globe Spotlight Team, Catholic Church sexual-abuse scandal, etc., all unfolding nearly two decades ago, and the BPD keeping this secret throughout and beyond.
Another week? Vehicle inspections won’t resume until April 17
From the AP at the Berkshire Eagle: “The Massachusetts motor vehicle inspection system is expected to remain down for another week, prompting state officials to give drivers with expired March stickers a grace period to obtain an up-to-date sticker, officials said.”
The malware-related shutdown is obviously a major concern for motorists. But gas stations and auto-repeair shops are also feeling the shutdown sting, reports the Herald’s Marie Szaniszlo.
Lieutenant governor’s job: So important that it can go unfilled?
The Herald’s Lisa Kashinsky reports on the latest attempt to amend the state’s constitution to allow a governor to appoint a lieutenant governor if the No. 2 spot becomes vacant. Right now, the post simply remains vacant if someone leaves office. Call it the Tim Murray Amendment. Kashinsky explains.
The Fattman controversy: Just follow the money
The Globe’s Matt Stout reports on the campaign donations flowing from one account to another account to yet another account that appear to be at the heart of the controversy between state regulators and Sen. Ryan Fattman et GOP friends. The ultimate question: Are such transfers illegal or just business as usual in elections?
Haunted? Messy former clerk said to linger at Mattapoisett Town Hall
Anything’s possible, right? An employee who spent decades working in Mattapoisett Town Hall claims the building has long been haunted by the playful spirit of a rather disorganized town clerk who worked there during the last century, Seth Chitwood at the Standard-Times reports.
As western Mass. renames summit and trail after Native American input …
From the AP at WBUR: “A summit of a Massachusetts mountain with a literary connection is being renamed, along with one of its trails, after outcry from Native American groups that call the area home. Indian Monument Trail is being renamed the Mohican Monument Trail, and Squaw Peak, a summit of Monument Mountain, is now Peeskawso Peak.”
… Wakefield tears itself apart over eliminating Native American logo
It’s fascinating how attached people get to A.) sports teams and B.) sports-team names and logos. Nowhere is this more evident than in Wakefield, where a move to change the high school’s Native American Warrior logo has “morphed from a school committee discussion into a full-fledged and vitriolic political campaign,” reports the Globe’s Matt Stout.
Theory and practice: Student plans run for North Adams mayor
He took the course. Now he wants to put it into practice. Fresh off learning all about politics via a class that coincided with the 2020 presidential race, Mass. College of Liberal Arts student Joshua Vallieres says he’ll run for North Adams mayor this fall, Larry Parnass at the Berkshire Eagle reports. Vallieres is likely to be one of several hopefuls facing off in a September preliminary after Mayor Tom Bernard said he would not seek another term.
Developers hedge their campaign-donation bets in mayoral race
The Globe’s Tim Logan likens it to hedging their bets. We prefer the clunky but more accurate insurance-policies metaphor. Whatever, Boston’s developers are taking no chances and spreading out their campaign donations to multiple candidates in the crowded Boston mayoral race.
Speaking of the mayor’s race, from GBH: “Acting Boston Mayor Janey Living A ‘Politician’s Dream,’ But Challenges Likely To Come Soon, Say GBH Political Analysts.”
Multi-tasker: Worcester bus union head was fired for giving news interview while driving
He left out one key detail. The former head of the bus drivers union at the Worcester Regional Transit Authority, who claimed he was improperly fired for speaking out about possible budget cuts at the agency, was fired for cause because he gave an interview to Telemundo while driving a bus, a judge has ruled. Cyrus Moulton at the Telegram more.
First one in: Kerry to visit China as soon as this week
Climate envoy John Kerry is poised to become the first member of the Biden administration to visit China, with a trip tentatively planned this week, Lily Kuo and John Hudson at the Washington Post report. The visit–which sources emphasize could still be canceled–would underscore Kerry and Biden’s hopes to work cooperatively with China on climate change even as two countries face off over a host of other issues.
The biggest ‘dream big’ fantasy of them all: East-west rail
This is sure to evoke howls in some quarters out west, to wit: A Globe editorial that attempts to derail the push for the East-West Rail project beloved by so many pols, particularly U.S. Rep. Richard Neal. The “dream big project” is just too big of a dream, the Globe says, noting there are other higher-priority transit projects that need funding in Massachusetts.
They did it: UMass wins NCAA men’s hockey championship
The AP at WCVB reports on UMass’s blowout 5-0 win Saturday night against St. Cloud, thus capturing the school’s first NCAA men’s hockey championship. They were celebrating away in Amherst on Saturday night, that’s for sure. MassLive’s Benjamin Kail has more. Here’s a big congratulations to the state’s latest champs!
Biodiversity Where You Are: Boston Area City Nature Challenge
Join the City Nature Challenge, Boston Public Library and Dr. Colleen Hitchcock from Brandeis University to find out how you can get involved in citizen and community science research this spring by joining City Nature Challenge. Learn about citizen science and nature documentation in the Boston area, how science and the public can work together to document nature, and what we’ve learned so far.
Propaganda, Media Literacy, and Democracy
This talk will explore the many efforts in education and journalism to increase the media literacy skills so vital to democracy. We’ll examine the challenges of this endeavor with Amy Callahan, who has studied this issue from many angles. A former journalist, public relations professional, and media literacy education scholar, she has an extensive background in teaching and journalism.
Virtual Author Talk with Tobey Pearl
Virtual Author Talk with Tobey Pearl, Author of Terror to the Wicked
American Ancestors/NEHGS, Boston Public Library, and the State Library of Massachusetts
Escaping Unfreedom: How Cuff Whittemore used his Military Service to Claim his Freedom
Cuff Whittemore of Arlington fought with his military company at Lexington, Concord, Bunker Hill, then seven more years in the Continental Army. Why did this African-American man choose to join the rebellion then re-enlist over and over after it had blossomed into a war? This online program, co-presented by the National Park Service, will happen over Zoom. Registration is required.
“I am a daughter of liberty”: Women in the American Struggle for Independence
The American Revolution brought the sudden and radical entrance of women into political life. Women actively participated in, and ensured the success of the boycotts of British goods that forced the repeal of oppressive legislation. When the war began, women took over the management of farms and shops, served as spies, saboteurs, messengers, and even soldiers. Their stories are worth telling.
MassEcon Forum: Massachusetts Business Incentives Primer
Massachusetts knows how to compete. On April 14, as the Red Sox take on the Twins, the Celtics get ready for the Lakers, and the Bruins prepare for the Islanders, join MassEcon and its Team Massachusetts partners as they explain the business incentive programs that enable Massachusetts to win global competitions for employers looking to invest in facilities and create new jobs.
How Snowflake’s Data Capabilities Increased Profitability for a Fortune 500 Retailer
Hear from Steve DiPietro, VP of Data Analytics Practice at Focus and former Snowflake customer, discuss how Snowflake’s near zero management ecosystem positively and profitably impacted his workflow at a global Fortune 500 retailer. He will be joined by Jonathan Tao, System Engineer and Andrew Fleming, Partner Manager at Snowflake to review top workload/focus areas for Snowflake’s users.
The Earth Convention – Sustainable Cities
In this session of Earth Convention, we will explore examples of cities across the world that are taking the lead on green initiatives. How can we design and plan urban infrastructure to be more sustainable? We will look at how citizens are organizing and working in partnership with city governments, civil society and businesses, and at how transport is changing.
Inaugural David Cooper Lecture – Dr. Anthony S. Fauci
Whilst the Covid-19 pandemic has been devastating in the USA, Dr. Anthony S. Fauci has remained a voice of authority and reason, bringing scientific evidence to the fore. He will sit down with Tegan Taylor, co-host of the ABC’s Coronacast, to discuss the past, present, and the future – from what we learned from the HIV/AIDS epidemic to what the ongoing impact of Covid-19 will be.
Project PhaEDRA and Star Notes – John G. Wolback Library Center for Astrophysics
Project PHaEDRA is an initiative to catalog, digitize and transcribe over 2500 logbooks and notebooks produced by the Harvard Computers, a group of women astronomers. The Star Notes project provides an opportunity to transcribe the notes of the Harvard Computers and accentuate their legacy and contribution to the field of astrophysics.
Community demands justice after Dorchester grandmother shot dead while sitting on front porch – Boston Herald
Diversity Square proposed for Lynn – Lynn Item
Lawrence school unions vote no confidence in superintendent – Eagle-Tribune
Tourism industry looks for help from state – Gloucester Times
Accusations muddle Bourne select board race – Cape Cod Times
Las Vegas pushes to become first to ban ornamental grass – Associated Press
How an online ‘Lego’ gamer infiltrated the White House press corps – Politico
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