Baker announces grants, virtual job fair, POST Commission, and more
9:30 a.m. | Gov. Charlie Baker, Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito, Labor and Workforce Development Secretary Rosalin Acosta, and Education Secretary James Peyser visit Peabody Veterans Memorial High School to announce latest round of Skill Capital Grants.
10 a.m. | The Baker administration and MassHire Career Centers host the first day of a virtual job fair to connect jobseekers and employers. Monday’s event, which runs until 2 p.m., is focused on all industries. More than 850 employers have registered for the week-long fair.
11 a.m. | House and Senate hold informal sessions.
4:30 p.m. | Peace Officer Standards and Training Commission meets. Agenda includes approval of its Aug. 6 meeting minutes as well as minutes for four commission meetings in July, a discussion of the status of hiring an executive director and other management positions, and new business that the chair did not anticipate at the time the meeting was posted.
6 p.m. | The Boston Food Access Council holds a 90-minute Boston mayoral candidate forum on Zoom and Facebook Live.
New report says bill could create tens of thousands of jobs
Legislation aimed at funding the state’s push to achieve net-zero carbon emission by 2050 would create roughly 87,300 new jobs, increased dollars for green projects in municipalities, and billions in savings at the state and local levels, according to a new report from Climate XChange Education and Research.
The report, which is expected to be widely shared later Monday, studies the effects of a bill from Rep. Bill Driscoll, which advocates say compliments the emissions reduction bill that was signed into law in March.
The emissions reduction legislation puts the state on a path to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. But there’s a catch: the authors of the report say the state can’t meet that target without additional funding. Driscoll’s bill, dubbed the “Green Future Act,” would raise $8.8 billion for green investments in state infrastructure, local aid, and workforce development.
“One of the overriding reasons for this bill now is that we still have a lot of progress to get to our 2030 goals, 50 percent reduction in emissions, and if we don’t do it this session, then next session, we’re going to have even less time to be able to hit that 50 percent goal,” said Tim Cronin, Massachusetts state director for Climate XChange Education and Research.
The new study says the bill would invest a minimum of $5.3 billion in projects that take place in and benefit environmental justice populations, and create at least $17.7 billion in additional savings for communities as a result of reduced air pollution, traffic congestion, fuel costs, and public safety, according to the report.
“This job creation is driven by labor-intensive green investments, generally supporting businesses that spend a greater share of revenue on compensating employees. These same labor-intensive businesses are also more likely to spend capital locally, rather than sending money out of state,” the report says. “As a result, Green Future Act investments support more local economic activity, spending power, and employment per dollar than the state average.”
How would all this be funded? The bill draws on two sources of revenue: an expansion of the state’s carbon pollution pricing and an optional green bonding program.
“The second source of revenue is through green bonding. So I think similar to the greenworks legislation that passed the House last session, this helps to raise money through targeted green bonds that are exempt from the state’s traditional bonding cap, but are kind of capped themselves at around $500 million a year and it will be an optional program year by year,” Cronin said.
Driscoll’s bill sits before the Telecommunications, Utilities, and Energy Committee which is chaired by Sen. Michael Barrett and Rep. Jeffrey Roy. For more on the legislation, State House News Service’s Chris Lisinski has more details in previous reporting on the legislation.
Heating up on the campaign trail
It’s really heating up. Not the weather … the Boston mayoral race. We’re in the final weeks before voters head to the polls for the Sept. 14 preliminary election and candidates are making their cases to key neighborhoods that could define the outcome next month, reports Boston Globe’s Milton J. Valencia, Stephanie Ebbert and Meghan E. Irons. As the Globe trio notes, we’re in for a no-holds runup to the primary with ads, tons of candidate facetime, and “gloves-off tactics.”
Entire state at high or substantial risk for virus spread
The COVID situation continues to look increasingly crappy. MassLive’s Melissa Hanson reports that all 14 counties in the state fall under the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s “high” or “substantial risk” categories for COVID-19 transmission. The federal agency advises people in those areas to wear masks in indoor settings even if they are vaccinated.
Could Obama’s birthday bash be a super-spreader?
Was it fun? Probably. Could it result in more COVID cases on Martha’s Vineyard? Too early to tell, say local health officials. Former President Barack Obama held his birthday bash on the Vineyard at the start of the month and it’s worth wondering whether or not the gathering will lead to a local increase of COVID-19 cases. Boston Herald’s Joe Dwinell spoke to the experts and officials to see when we’ll get a clear picture.
Haitian community in Greater Boston react to earthquake at home
At least 1,297 people have died as a result of a magnitude 7.2 earthquake in Haiti, reports Associated Press’ Mark Stevenson and Evens Sanon, and rescuers are racing to find more survivors in the rubble as a tropical storm approaches. And the catastrophe has many impacts in Boston, with one local resident telling WBUR’s Quincy Walters that he is still waiting to hear from family members in Haiti.
Rising cases. Rising calls.
The cases are on the rise. And so are the calls for unvaccinated individuals to seek out a shot. Politicians and local officials in Worcester hoped local stories of people who did not get vaccinated and later contracted COVID-19 would help spur others to get jabbed, reports Telegram & Gazette’s Steven H. Foskett Jr.
More from Foskett Jr.: “As the city weathers yet another wave of increases in the COVID-19 virus, due in large part to the delta variant, officials said Friday it’s time for residents to protect themselves and others and get vaccinated. They pointed out repeatedly that nearly all COVID-19 hospitalizations are among unvaccinated individuals.”
Want a vaccine but don’t know where to get one? The state still hosts its “VaxFinder” website.
Pittsfield school committee to debate mask wearing in schools
Should students have to wear masks in Pittsfield? The local school committee will tackle the question of mandating masks for the upcoming school year during their Wednesday meeting, reports Berkshire Eagle’s Meg Britton-Mehlisch. The average case count per 100,000 residents doubled over the last two weeks from 6.7 to 13.2 — a number that will surely be brought up during discussion.
Cape Cod and the Islands grew over the past decade
More on the Census data from last week: Cape Cod and the Islands grew in number and diversity, reports Cape Cod Times’ Jessica Hill. Nantucket Count saw a population spike of 40.1 percent between 2010 and 2020 while Dukes County grew by 24.6 percent and Barnstable County by 6.1 percent. Local officials told the Cape Cod Times that they want to study the data even further to understand how COVID-19 may have impacted population numbers.
Wrestling with idea of mask mandates, proof of vax
As vaccine mandates play out at private and public employers across the country and state, a number of businesses in the Fall River area are considering requiring employees and visitors to show proof of vaccination or wear a mask, reports Herald News’ Charles Winokoor.
Scrambled plans for Everett mayoral debate
They all have different stories. The first debate for mayoral candidates in Everett fell apart over the weekend after a few miscommunications left everyone disorientated, reports Sarah Betancourt for GBH News, who also notes that two candidates were left locked outside the would-be venue.
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