Legislative hearings, cocktails-to-go celebration, and more
1 p.m. | Joint Committee on Consumer Protection and Professional Licensure meets virtually for a public hearing on eight bills dealing with COVID-19 and requests from municipalities for additional alcohol licenses.
1 p.m. | Joint Committee on Mental Health, Substance Use, and Recovery holds virtual public hearing on 25 bills dealing with inpatient facilities, involuntary commitments, and carceral health care, with Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan planning to testify in support of legislation to strengthen emergency restraint for persons suffering dangerous or violent mental illness.
1 p.m. | COVID-19 Cultural Impact Commission meets to discuss its draft report and recommendations and final steps for its June 29 meeting.
5:30 p.m. | Raise Up Massachusetts holds a campaign rally in Somerville to promote the proposed 4 percent surtax on incomes above $1 million, known as the “millionaire’s tax,’ Union Square.
6 p.m. | Cocktails for Commonwealth celebrates the extension of to-go cocktail sales by restaurants through May of next year, with speakers including Sen. Diana DiZoglio and Amanda Converse of Love Live Local, The Quiet Few, East Boston.
For the most comprehensive list of calendar items, check out State House News Service’s Daily Advances (pay wall – free trial subscriptions available).
Galvin’s ‘interested’ in 2022 election
He’s been secretary of state for as long as Tom Brady has been in the NFL, one local T.V. anchor pointed out. But will Secretary of State William Galvin run for an eighth term, potentially setting himself up to be one of the longest-serving people in the post?
The state’s top election official was asked that question once again during a Sunday appearance on WCVB’s “On The Record,” and his answer was the strongest indicator so far of a decision. Galvin said he is “interested in the next election,” enjoys his work, and would make a final determination by the end of the year.
“Well, next year is the election. I keep pointing that out. Next year is the election, not this year,” he said Sunday morning. “Now, I understand you’ve got a lot of folks running, announcing campaigns for next year, but a lot of them, I don’t believe any of those people have ever run statewide before. So they probably need the time to familiarize themselves with the new landscape of the districts they are choosing. I don’t have that issue.”
The secretary is up for re-election in 2022, appearing on the same ballot as the state’s other Constitutional officers. He’s served as secretary of state since 1995 when he successfully beat Democratic candidate Augusto Grace in the Democratic primary and Republican candidate Arthur Chase in the general election.
Galvin had $1.7 million cash on hand as of the end of May, according to the state’s campaign finance office, a sizable sum that could help fuel another re-election bid. Galvin’s popularity and ability to hold onto the office for decades would also make him a formidable candidate.
Winthrop shooting investigated as hate crime
Law enforcement officials are investigating the violent Winthrop shooting over the weekend that left two dead as a hate crime, reports Boston Globe’s John Hilliard, Alexandra Chaidez, and Camille Caldera. Ramona Cooper, an Air Force staff sergeant, and David Green, a retired state trooper, were shot multiple times by a 28-year-old, officials said.
Boston Herald’s Erin Tiernan reports that officials said the shooter may have been motivated by white supremacy. More from Tiernan: “Police have discovered ‘some troubling white supremacist rhetoric’ in Allen’s own handwriting and are investigating Saturday’s events as a potential hate crime, the district attorney confirmed.”
MassLive’s Benjamin Kail also has more details from a Sunday press conference with Suffolk District Attorney Rachael Rollins.
Scooting around in Boston?
If you’ve ever been out west you’ve probably seen the massive number of people using apps to rent an electric scooter and zoom around. Will that ever come to Boston? From Boston Business Journal’s Greg Ryan: “The present moment seems to offer perfect conditions for the electric scooters ubiquitous in other U.S. cities to finally hit the streets of Greater Boston, municipal officials and scooter supporters say their arrival is being held up by inaction in the Massachusetts Legislature.”
From the top rope: Romney says Trump’s ongoing election lies “like WWF”
Points for finding a new way to say the same old thing. Former President Donald Trump returned to the rally circuit on Saturday which means U.S. Sen. Mitt Romney had a chance to react on Sunday — and as usual the former Mass. governor did not hold back. Caroline Vakil of The Hill reports Romney said without qualification that the 2020 election was fair and compared Trump’s nursing of the big lie to fake wrestling. “[I]t’s entertaining, but it’s not real.”
Four months in, another deal is on the table
Third time’s the charm? St. Vincent Hospital proposed another deal to the Massachusetts Nurses Association in an attempt to end a four-month strike, reports Telegram & Gazette’s Isabel Sami. The deal comes less than two weeks after the hospital hired permanent nurses.
More from Sami: “The hospital announced Sunday morning that its new proposal — the third offered by St. Vincent since April 26 — presents enhanced resource nurse staffing in addition to generous wage and health benefits and security measures.”
Hold your fire: Mashpee Tribe takes stance against machine gun range
The Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe has taken a formal stance in opposition to plans to construct a machine-gun firing range on Joint Base Cape Cod, saying the new facility could “erase” years of progress in returning once-polluted parts of the base to a more natural condition, Jessica Hill of the Cape Cod Times reports.
‘Vax Bus’ starts rolling through the state
By land, sea, or air, vaccines are rolling out across the globe. And in Massachusetts, state officials are taking a particular liking to all sorts of vehicular methods to reach unvaccinated individuals The latest: the ‘Vax Bus.’ Associated Press reports that two buses started traveling across the state over the weekend seeking to administer doses in about two dozen communities. What’re the odds they get stuck in the traffic that’s roared back to life in recent weeks?
No dice: Former owners of Everett casino property lose bid to double sale price
Here’s your latest reminder that the house always wins. A Suffolk Superior Court judge has tossed a suit from the previous owners of the Everett property where the Encore Boston Harbor casino now sits, an action that sought to force the Mass. Gaming Commission to boost the sale price by $40 million, Jon Chesto of the Globe reports. The businessmen claimed they were forced to reduce the property’s value by nearly half after the commission’s investigators discovered the group once had a connection to a convicted criminal.
Former Wormtown employees pursue legal action against brewery
Two former employees of Wormtown Brewery are seeking legal action against the brewery after reporting instances of harassment, reports Melissa Hanson of MassLive. More from Hanson.
Backing out? Lee clears way for non-binding vote on GE PCB landfill
They’ll have their say — whether it will matter is another issue. Lee town meeting has cleared the way for the town’s voters to weigh in on whether the Berkshires community should host a PCB landfill called for in GE’s consent agreement with the EPA to clean up decades-old contamination in the Housatonic River. Dick Lindsay of the Berkshire Eagle reports the select board is worried that denying the dump could unravel the entire $576 million agreement with GE.
Bill targets Harvard’s fossil fuel investments
Progressive lawmakers on Beacon Hill are trying to force Harvard University to divest from fossil fuels with new legislation filed this session, reports Kate Lusignan at the Boston Globe. Of the $42 billion endowment, $838 million is invested in coal, oil, or gas companies and the bill would use a Constitutional article to “alter” Harvard’s governance.
More from Lusignan: “Since the 1800s, the Legislature has employed the article 11 times — most recently in1967. Lawrence Friedman, a professor at New England Law, said the bill is constitutionally legal, yet he said invoking the article could be described as ‘drastic.’”
Struggle to hire first responders on the Cape tied to housing prices
Housing prices on Cape Cod are leading to a struggle to hire first responders, reports the Cape Cod Times.
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