Happening Today

10 a.m. | Revenue Committee holds virtual public hearing on bills addressing the sales tax, the gas tax, proposed taxes on sugary drinks, and recommended real estate transfer fees. 

11 a.m. | House holds an informal session and Senate meets without a calendar.

1 p.m. | Department of Transportation Secretary Jamey Tesler and MBTA General Manager Steve Poftak join MBTA crews to hand out face masks and $5 Dunkin’ gift cards to commuters at South Station in a promotion to thank T riders.

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2 p.m. | Gov. Charlie Baker, Senate President Karen Spilka, House Speaker Ronald Mariano, and other legislative leaders meet privately. A media availability follows in the State House.

5 p.m. | The six-day public comment period closes for the new House and Senate district maps the Legislature’s Redistricting Committee unveiled Tuesday.

Today’s Stories

‘The numbers are not real’

The numbers are misleading.

That’s how Boston mayoral candidate Annissa Essaibi George pushed back against the results from a poll conducted by MassINC Polling Group that found rival candidate Michelle Wu ahead by 32 points with only weeks until the election. Now, with only 15 days until the Nov. 2 election, the two candidates are entering the final stages of campaigning.

“I think that the numbers are misleading. And if we look back to the preliminary, all of the polls just before election day, had me actually in third place, in fourth place,” Essaibi George said Sunday on WCVB’s “On The Record.” “The numbers are not real. I don’t believe that they’re real. I do believe that we are still operating, though, from behind.”

The poll surveyed 500 likely voters and had a margin of error of plus or minus 4.9 percentage points. WBUR’s Anthony Brooks reported that the poll also found 19 percent of likely voters are still making up their minds. Wu was viewed favorably by 61 percent of city residents compared to Essaibi George’s 37 percent.

So where does Essaibi George focus to make up the difference? What demographics is she after?

“This is about every community, every neighborhood. And certainly, there’s conversation about we’ll focus on super voters, focus on this block of people or that neighborhood. That has not been my style. As an at-large city councilor, I am committed to representing the entire city and I’m committed to making sure that I have and pull from every neighborhood, every demographic, every group of people, every age group.”

Vaccine mandate for executive department employees now in effect

A vaccine mandate for executive department employees at the state level went into effect yesterday, impacting roughly 44,000 workers. MassLive’s Alison Kuznitz reports that as of Friday, thousands in the Baker administration were at risk of disciplinary action for not receiving a COVID vaccine.

More from Kuznitz: “It’s too early to gauge exactly how many state government workers could face termination under Baker’s order — and what reverberating disruptions that could have on everyday life in Massachusetts.”

State House News Service’s Matt Murphy reports that hundreds of corrections officers could also be in violation of the mandate. The Massachusetts Correction Officers Federated Union has been locked in a legal back and forth to delay the implementation of the mandate, though a federal judge on Friday denied a preliminary injunction.

MassLive

Dirty trick? Fliers send gift-card seekers to Wu campaign event with Markey

Apparently we have reached the dirty tricks portion of the Boston mayoral campaign. Someone distributed fliers around the Old Colony housing project and near Mass and Cass promising $100 gift cards to anyone who showed up and held a campaign sign at a Michelle Wu campaign event on Sunday featuring U.S. Sen. Ed Markey. Adam Gaffin of Universal Hub reports no such promise was made by either campaign and both Wu and her opponent denied any knowledge of the scheme.

Universal Hub

Rep. Mark to run for Senate

Rep. Paul Mark plans to announce his campaign for state Senate this morning, reports State House News Service’s Matt Murphy. The Peru Democrat plans to seek the seat currently held by Sen. Adam hinds, who announced a bid for lieutenant governor in 2022.

State House News Service

Wu will have to look to Beacon Hill to push through some proposals

Dependence on Beacon Hill. That’s what Boston mayoral candidate Michelle Wu will need to make real many of the ideas she’s pitched on the campaign trail. From eliminating fares on the MBTA to reinstituting rent control, Boston Globe’s Matt Stout reports that Wu will have to rely on state lawmakers to push through some of her proposals.

More from Stout: “While the Boston mayor’s office offers an unrivaled bully pulpit in the city to push change, providing the funding for a quasi-state transit system to be free, for example, or raising certain taxes to pay for others are decisions that sit with state government, where the gatekeepers are a 200-person Legislature and a governor beholden to the entire state.”

Boston Globe

Rat-borne disease poses “high risk” for people at Mass and Cass.

A new rat-borne disease is putting people living in the Mass and Cass. area at “high risk,” the Boston Public Health Commission warned. Boston Herald’s Sean Philip Cotter reports that as the rodent population swells, health officials are investigating a case of human leptospirosis, a disease that spreads by the urine of an infected animal.

More from Cotter: “This comes as conditions deteriorate in the vicinity of the South End’s Newmarket area, known as Mass and Cass or Methadone Mile, where there remains essentially a large tent city of people living on the street, often using or selling drugs. Locals say the rat population — periodically a problem in various neighborhoods of Boston — particularly has boomed there lately.”

Boston Herald

Baker and Lyons at odds as GOP infighting escalates

Two of the top Republicans in Massachusetts traded barbs Friday with Gov. Charlie Baker calling on MassGOP Chairman Jim Lyons to resign and the chairman telling the governor to “reconsider his party affiliation.” It was an intense moment of infighting that came after Lyons decided not to back away from a Boston City Council at-large candidate who made anti-Asian posts on social media, reports Dorchester Reporter’s Gintautas Dumcius.

Dorchester Reporter

St. Vincent Hospital CEO says ‘call off the strike’

A new contract for nurses at St. Vincent Hospital went into effect Sunday that hospital officials say increases staffing and offers raises. And after declaring an impasse early last week, Telegram & Gazette’s Cyrus Moulton reports that CEO Carolyn Jackson said it’s time for the Massachusetts Nurses Association to “call off the strike and allow its nurses to come back to work.” MNA has filed an unfair labor charge with the National Labor Relations Board, calling the impasse “illegal” because it wasn’t made in good faith.

Telegram & Gazette

Zero to six: North Adams man pleads guilty to Jan. 6 misdemeanor

North Adams resident Brian McCreary has agreed to plead guilty to a single misdemeanor charge in connection with his presence at the U.S. Capitol during the Jan. 6 insurrection. Amanda Burke of the Berkshire Eagle reports McCreary will be sentenced in January and that prosecutors are seeking a penalty of up to six months in prison.

Berkshire Eagle

Nursing home in Pittsfield fined for neglect

A new report from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services found that a Pittsfield nursing home left resident with bedsores and laying in their waste for as much as eight hours. Berkshire Eagle’s Heather Bellow reports that Springside Rehabilitation and Skilled Care Center was fined over $27,000.

Berkshire Eagle

New firm in town: Lobbying concern opens Boston location with focus on ties to Walsh

They know a guy. Florida-based lobbying firm Ballard Partners opened a Boston office that will be anchored by two politicos with close ties to U.S. Labor Secretary Marty Walsh, the Globe’s Neya Thanikachalam reports. Eugene O’Flaherty, the former city attorney under Walsh, and former aide Stephen Passacantilli will anchor the outpost for Ballard, which rose in prominence in recent years thanks in part to close ties to Donald Trump.

Boston Globe

Looking back one year after David Almond case

A year after first responders found 14-year-old David Almond emaciated and living in excrement and later declared him dead, Herald News’ Audrey Cooney takes a look at what is being done to prevent another tragedy from occurring.

Herald News

Talk it out: Lawrence convenes meeting on violence in schools

Lawrence officials have convened a public meeting for Monday night to address a spate of violence in the city’s schools and Mayor and School Committee Chairman Kendrys Vasquez is asking State Education Commissioner Jeff Riley to attend, Michael Norton of State House News Service reports. Vasquez says his power is limited because the Lawrence school system remains under state receivership.

Meanwhile, WCVB reports Vasquez plans to join members of the local teachers union and community members in a protest outside Lawrence High on Monday morning.

Today’s Headlines

Metro

North End restaurant owners prepare to pack up their patios, 1 month before the rest of Boston – Boston.com

Group of Mass General Brigham employees sues over hospital vaccination mandate – Universal Hub

Massachusetts

Flooding could shut down Logan airport, hospitals, and other critical infrastructure in Mass., and the risk is only growing, report says – Boston Globe

Judge rules against prison guards challenging vaccine mandate – Boston Globe

‘Incredible gesture’ Cape Cod Hospital receives $10 million gift, largest in its history – Cape Cod Times

Nation

As Trump Thunders About Last Election, Republicans Worry About the Next One – New York Times

Hollywood union reaches deal with producers to avoid nationwide strike – Washington Post

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