Keller at Large

Keller at Large

In his latest Keller at Large on MassterList, Jon Keller explores how the winds are shifting in Boston and in “our political culture, it’s raining women, even here in Massachusetts, home until recently of one of the nation’s most hidebound old-boy hierarchies.”

Keller at Large

Happening Today

Baker and Neal at tech council, Future of Work Commission, and more

9 a.m. | Gov. Charlie Baker and U.S. Rep. Richard Neal are scheduled to offer remarks at Massachusetts High Technology Council’s 2021 annual meeting.

11 a.m. | Joint Committee on Cannabis Policy holds a virtual public hearing on eight medical and research bills. 

11 a.m. | Joint Committee on Health Care Financing holds virtual public hearing on a lengthy slate of bills related to health system contracting and financing and delivery system planning and oversight.

11 a.m. | Future of Work Commission holds its first meeting to study and develop recommendations related to the impact of automation, artificial intelligence, global trade, access to new data forms, and the Internet of Things on the Massachusetts workforce. 

 12 p.m. | Boston Globe in partnership with the Civic Action Project holds virtual event on how public policy and private action can be used to make sure that neighborhood development “shares the space and the benefits equitably with people of ethnicities and economic means,” an event advisory said.

Today’s Stories

White House reportedly looking at Robinson for FERC commissioner

Rep. Maria Robinson is reportedly among the front runners to replace the commissioner of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, Utility Dive’s Catherine Morehouse reports. A final nominee has not been revealed but the White House has been vetting the second-term representative.

The Framingham Democrat previously served as director of wholesale markets at Advanced Energy Economy. Robinson did not immediately respond to a MassterList request for comment.

Utility Dive

Legislature approves $5.4 billion interim budget

The state will start the new fiscal year on July 1 without a full budget in place and instead rely on a $5.4 billion interim budget to cover state spending for one month. The House and Senate made quick work of Gov. Charlie Baker’s one-twelfth spending plan Monday, reports MassLive’s Steph Solis.

From SHNS’s Matt Murphy: “With the Legislature now guaranteed to miss the July 1 deadline to have an annual budget in place, a leading state policy think tank urged negotiators Monday to revise tax revenue expectations upward by a minimum of $3.8 billion and use that flexibility to cancel a proposed draw on the state’s reserves.”

Out front: Boston mayoral poll shows Wu, Janey in lead

Is Boston headed for a history-making, women-only final election? A new Globe/Suffolk University poll shows City Councilor Michelle Wu and Acting Mayor Kim Janey separating themselves from the pack of Boston mayoral hopefuls and suggests that none of the four men in the race will survive the September preliminary election.

Stephanie Ebbert of the Globe reports Wu topped the field with support of 23 percent of voters, with Janey just a percentage point behind. Two other city councilors — Annissa Essaibi George and Andrea Campbell — also polled in double-digits. As for issues, the poll found housing, racism and equality are top of mind for Boston voters. 

More from Ebbert: “Overall, 70 percent of likely voters favored one of the contest’s four women — all women of color — suggesting that none of the four men running may survive the Sept. 14 preliminary election to advance to the Nov. 2 runoff. Only white men have been elected Boston mayor since the job was created nearly 200 years ago.”

Boston Globe

The New Hampshire vs. Massachusetts storyline

They wanted their money back. The U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear a New Hampshire case challenging a Massachusetts pandemic-era rule that required out-of-state residents working remotely for Massachusetts companies to pay Bay State income taxes, reports Boston Business Journal’s Greg Ryan.

The rule expires 90 days after the state of emergency in Massachusetts is lifted — Gov. Charlie Baker ended the emergency on June 15. More from Ryan: “The end of the state of emergency did not end the dispute, in part because New Hampshire wanted its residents to get a refund for taxes collected under the regulation.”

Boston Business Journal

Officials: Accused shooter drew swastikas and called whites ‘apex predators’

Law enforcement officials say investigators found the 28-year-old man accused of shooting two Black residents in Winthrop had written about whites as “apex predators” and drew swastikas, reports Benjamin Kail of MassLive. Authorities are investigating the shooting as a hate crime.

A team of reporters from the Boston Globe report that the sibling of retired State Trooper David Green, one of the two killed during the Saturday shooting, said he believed his brother was “trying to jump the shooter when he was killed.”


Community colleges looking to bring students back

Community colleges across the state are “scrambling” to bring back students who left as a result of the pandemic and economic downturn, reports Kirk Carapezza of GBH News. Worcester’s Quinsigamond Community College, for example, is rolling out a new series of videos asking students to get vaccinated before returning to campus and has used federal aid dollars to forgive balances of over 1,600 students. 

GBH News

Another Mass. official heads to Washington

The Biden administration must love Massachusetts as another official was tapped to head to Washington D.C. MassHealth Assistant Secretary Daniel Tsai was picked to serve as deputy administrator for the Center for Medicaid and Medicaid Services and director for the Center for Medicaid and CHIP Services, reports MassLive’s Steph Solis. 

The list of Massachusetts officials heading to Washington D.C. leaves one to wonder whether or not there will be a noticeable knowledge loss among elected bodies, state agencies, private institutions, and quasi-public groups in the state that have had someone head to the Capital.


Experience speaks: Dukakis warns Democrats on crime

He ought to know. Former Mass. Gov. and losing presidential candidate Michael Dukakis is warning Democrats they risk repeating his mistakes from 1988 by not doing a better job of articulating their stance on crime and police, Niall Stanage of The Hill reports. The 87-year-old says President Biden appears to be striking the right balance with his policy proposals, but that messaging is being muddled by ongoing calls to ‘defund the police.’

The Hill

‘Hard work:’ Correia co-conspirator Tony Costa avoids jail time

He’s going to repay the city in more than one way. Fall River businessman Tony Costa was sentenced to three years probation, including 15 months under home confinement and ordered to forfeit more than $107,000 in bribery payments and perform 100 hours worth of ‘hard’ community service work for his role in former Mayor Jasiel Correia’s pot-license extortion scheme. A trio of Herald-News reporters has all the details from federal court. 

Herald News

Warren endorses Boston City Council at-large candidate

U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren jumped into Boston politics Monday by endorsing Ruthzee Louijeune in the Boston at-large City Council race, reports Jasper Goodman at the Boston Globe. Louijeune is Warren’s former Harvard Law School student and Senate campaign aide.

Boston Globe

Clear sailing: No challengers as Taunton’s O’Connell announces re-elect bid

Taunton Mayor Shauna O’Connell has formally announced her re-election bid and with just over a month to go before the deadline, the former state representative has yet to draw a challenger. Susannah Sudborough of the Taunton Gazette reports O’Connell is touting her pandemic-era leadership and promising to lead the city to “the next level.” 

Taunton Daily Gazette

Question time: One race, 11 ballot questions await Wellfleet voters

So many questions. Wellfleet voters head to the polls for a delayed election on Wednesday and while the ballot features just one contested race, voters will also face a slate of 11 ballot questions, including a Proposition 2 1/2 override seeking extra funds to hire first responders at a pay rate that will actually allow them to afford nearby housing. Denise Coffey of the Cape Cod Times has the details.

Cape Cod Times

Today’s Headlines


Boston sues Rhode Island man it says is renting out an affordable condo that’s only supposed to be owned by a Boston resident – Universal Hub

Face masks that can detect coronavirus: Harvard, MIT researchers create wearable tech – Boston Herald


Pandemic, timing attributed to low voter turnouts in Attleboro area despite big tax hikes – Sun Chronicle

Fall River City Council looking into possible overcharges for legal work – Herald News

Lawmakers tweak chicken cage law – Salem News


Court says FTC hasn’t provided evidence Facebook is a monopoly, dismisses lawsuit – Washington Post

Documents Show Ivanka Trump Didn’t Testify Accurately in Inauguration Scandal Case – Mother Jones

How to Contact MASSterList

Send tips to Matt Murphy: For advertising inquiries and job board postings, please contact Dylan Rossiter: 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.