Happening Today

10 a.m. | Coalition for Worker Ownership and Power holds press conference outside the State House in connection with a statewide “Day of Action” to push legislators to create more opportunities for working people to own their workplaces. 

11 a.m. | House meets in a full formal session with plans to consider a bill to fund local road and bridge repairs.

11 a.m. | Interim Suffolk DA Kevin Hayden appears on GBH’s “Boston Public Radio.”

12 p.m. | Boston Cyclists Union holds a rally outside the State House in support of legislation from Rep. Dylan Fernandes, Rep. Steven Owens, and Sen. Sal DiDomenico that would standardize the classification of electric bicycles to differentiate between low-speed and higher-speed e-bikes.

1 p.m. | Ongoing labor-management dispute concerning app-based drivers for platforms like Uber and DoorDash, which remains on track to go before voters in November, takes center stage at a legislative hearing. Financial Services Committee hears testimony on both versions of the potential ballot question.

Today’s Stories

Good morning.

Cooler heads seem to be prevailing in an outdoor dining spat involving Boston Mayor Michelle Wu and a group of North End restaurant owners. Or, at least, Wu is attempting to restore peace with what she hopes to be an offer of compromise to resolve another controversy in the mayor’s still fresh tenure.

At issue here is a $7,500 fee the City of Boston is looking to charge restaurant owners in Boston’s historic Italian neighborhood who want to host outdoor dining. The fee is intended to help the city mitigated the outsized impact outdoor patios have had on year-round residents in the densely populated neighborhood.

Local restaurant owners haven’t taken kindly to the notion of paying thousands to have their outdoor patios approved by the city. They say the fee unfairly targets the North End and burdens their business.

On Tuesday, Wu said the city will offer a tiered payment structure where restaurants can apply for hardship waivers based on their location, whether they have a liquor license, and the size of the outdoor patio, and potentially reduce the size of the fee.

The city will use the fee, which Wu said can be paid in monthly installments, to pay for more trash pickup and make up for lost parking spots.

“We need to have a specially tailored program for our North End residents,” Wu said Tuesday at a City Hall press conference. “That means that we need the resources to be able to address some of the impacts that will help contribute to an even greater quality of life.

Violence in Boston founder pleads not guilty to federal charges

Prominent Boston activist Monica Cannon-Grant and her husband pleaded not guilty to federal charges alleging they used donations intended for their nonprofit Violence in Boston for personal use. Boston Herald’s Flint McColgan reports their next court appearance is scheduled for May 23.

Boston Herald

Inspections of train lines under collapsed garage in Boston ongoing

Engineers with the MBTA and outside experts held the first round of inspections of Green and Orange Line tunnels underneath the former Government Center Garage, where a portion of the structure collapsed Saturday killing an Easton man. Boston Globe’s John R. Ellement, Dugan Arnett, and Travis Andersen report the T is also operating a test train on the Orange Line near Haymarket Station. T officials announced late Tuesday that Orange Line service between North Station and Back Bay had resumed, though Haymarket station remained closed.

In related news, WBUR’s Beth Healy and Christine Willmsen report JDC Demolition Co. — the company in charge of the worksite — has paid out large settlements in recent years in response to at least three lawsuits brought by workers who were hurt on the job.

Biden billionaire tax finds fans in Massachusetts politics

It’s not clear how far President Biden’s push to raise taxes on billionaires will go in Congress, but it’s clear the plan has its fans here in the Bay State. U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren, who made higher taxes on the wealthy a centerpiece of her 2020 presidential run, expressed support but said she would have gone even further, the Globe’s Jess Bidgood reports.

And Christian Wade of the Salem News reports U.S. Rep. Richard Neal, who would have a hand in crafting a tax bill as chair of the House’s Ways and Means Committee, and U.S. Rep. Lori Trahan both expressed support for the push as well.

A tale of the Lottery, UPS, and the cost of shipping

Most people like to ease into a new job. Interim Lottery Executive Director Mark Bracken didn’t have that luxury. State House News Service’s Colin A. Young reports that an expiring statewide contract with UPS meant Bracken and the agency had to scramble this month find an alternative way to send out the 750 to 800 packages shipped each day. The solution? The back of sales reps’ cars. Thankfully it never came to that.

More from Young: “…the situation made for a hectic start to Bracken’s tenure and is expected to lead to more than $1 million in extra shipping costs for the Lottery in the next fiscal year.”

State House News Service

A cautious start to the governor’s race

A series of exchanges about live debates between the two Democratic candidates for governor reveal the cautious campaign Attorney General Maura Healey is running, writes CommonWealth’s Bruce Mohl.

More from Mohl: “[Sen. Sonia] Chang-Diaz’s candidacy is all about introducing herself to voters, but Healey is acting as if everybody already knows where she stands. A recent Boston Globe story noted Healey’s campaign is ‘long on advantages’ and ‘short on specifics.’”


Ballot question committee chair sues student newspaper

A Somerville landlord and orthodontist is suing the independent student newspaper of Tufts University alleging the Tufts Daily published a defamatory article that was a negligent infliction of emotional distress and invasion of privacy, according to court documents. The student newspaper published a brief article about the lawsuit Tuesday.

Mouhab Rizkallah, the landlord, chairs a committee pushing a ballot question dealing with dental insurance.  He is also the subject of a lawsuit brought by Attorney General Maura Healey alleging the orthodontist abused the MassHealth insurance system by keeping braces on kids longer than needed in an effort to charge more money.

CBS Boston’s Bill Shields previously reported that Rizkallah said “the bottom line is we won’t rush our treatments, or fail to give kids their needed mouth guards, or be bullied into lower quality care,” in regards to the Healey lawsuit.

State’s workplace inspectors refuse Springfield courthouse visit

The state’s Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development says it won’t send its workplace safety inspectors to Springfield to examine the Roderick Ireland courthouse because the agency that oversees the facility – which has been plagued by safety and health concerns – is already taking steps to address the issues. MassLive’s Jim Kinney has the details.


Report: Lots more apartments needed in Springfield area

A new report from UMass Amherst says the greater Springfield area, often seen as one of the state’s more affordable places to live, suffers from its own housing shortages and recommends at least 17,000 more apartments be brought on line with rents as low as $500 a month in order to match all those seeking houses with places to live, Dusty Christensen of the Daily Hampshire Gazette reports.

Daily Hampshire Gazette

Former UMass student sentenced to up to five years behind bars

A former University of Massachusetts student and convicted rapist was sentenced to up to five years in prison Tuesday. MassLive’s Erin Tiernan reports Ryder Chilcoff was convicted of raping another student in a dormitory in December 2017. He’ll also have to register as a sex offender, per the judge’s ruling.


More life science labs could be on their way to downtown Boston

A California-based lab developer snatched up a 10-story office building in downtown Boston for $106 million. Boston Business Journal’s Greg Ryan reports the deal could bring more lab space to an area that has been considered an unlikely location for life science companies.

Boston Business Journal

Great Barrington residents want airport cut back to 1932 size

Neighbors of the Walter J. Koladza airport in Great Barrington are asking the town’s Zoning Board of Appeals to restrict the facility’s size and scope to its 1932 blueprint, the year zoning laws first took effect. A favorable ruling would essentially halt operations, Heather Bellow of the Berkshire Eagle reports.

Berkshire Eagle

Today’s Headlines


Boston ‘pausing’ plans to take down 54 trees at Malcolm X Park — again – Boston Herald

As Boston weighs a reparations commission, questions of cost and control arise – WGBH


Worcester City Council will wait another week to discuss interim manager – Telegram & Gazette

Michelle Carter case: Hulu’s first episode of ‘The Girl From Plainville’ is based on Massachusetts true crime story, here’s what really happened – MassLive


Jan. 6 White House logs given to House show 7-hour gap in Trump calls – Washington Post

Cawthorn’s orgies-and-drugs comment stirs trouble within Freedom Caucus – Politico

How to Contact MASSterList

Send tips to Matt Murphy: Editor@MASSterList.com. For advertising inquiries and job board postings, please contact Dylan Rossiter: Publisher@MASSterList.com 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.