8:30 a.m. | Peace Officer Standards and Training Commission meets.
9:15 a.m. | Massachusetts Gaming Commission holds a public hearing on the adoption of regulations related to sports betting applications, sports betting definitions, sports wagering vendors, and sports betting tax remittance.
2 p.m. | Health and Human Services Secretary Marylou Sudders, Sen. Michael Barrett and Rep. Sean Garballey join advocates from The Arc of Massachusetts at MetFern Cemetery in Waltham to recognize a new law that creates a commission to investigate the history of Massachusetts residents who lived in state institutions with mental and physical disabilities.
4 p.m. | U.S. Sen. Edward Markey joins La Colaborativa and state Sen. Sal DiDomenico to distribute Thanksgiving meals to over 10,000 local residents under the bridge at Sixth Street at Spruce Street in Chelsea.
5 p.m. | Rep. Chynah Tyler of Boston hosts her third annual Fall Harvest Give Back at the Reggie Lewis Center in Roxbury where 200 free turkeys will be given away to families in the community.
Gov.-elect Maura Healey has had plenty of time to think about how she wants to staff the governor’s office and fill her Cabinet, but the just-elected Democrat is taking her time announcing any final decisions.
Despite Healey’s huge polling leads throughout the campaign and the proven-out likelihood that she would cruise to victory, the attorney general’s team was careful not to get too far ahead of itself. Now with Thanksgiving approaching, it’s possible, if not probable that Healey will go into the holiday without having made a single pick for her new administration.
This stands in contrast to Gov. Charlie Baker, who despite being locked in a tight contest in 2014 against Martha Coakley named his first Cabinet pick within five days of winning – Democrat and Chelsea City Manager Jay Ash for economic development secretary. But as State House News Service’s Sam Doran has reported, it’s not abnormal.
By this date, Baker had actually named three Cabinet secretaries – Ash, former Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Matthew Beaton and Health and Human Services Secretary Marylou Sudders – and picked his friend and former colleague Steve Kadish to become his chief of staff.
By Nov. 23, 2014 (four days before Thanksgiving) Kristen Lepore had been announced as incoming administration and finance secretary, allowing her to get straight to work on a looming budget shortfall.
If Healey has made any of these types of decisions in her mind, she and her team are not letting on despite the swirl of names around the transition. Last Friday, Healey named Danielle Cerny her transition director and announced six policy committees and their co-chairs. Those committees are expected to get filled out in the coming days.
Meanwhile, Healey herself has been logging some air miles and also has to think about transitioning the attorney general’s office to the hands of Attorney General-elect Andrea Campbell. She met with Campbell at her offices on Monday.
Midweek last week, Healey was in Washington, D.C. for the Democratic Attorneys General Association’s Policy Conference before traveling to South Carolina on Thursday, to attend the National Governors Association’s New Governors Seminar through Saturday.
State House News Service’s Colin A. Young also reported yesterday that Healey snuck in a trip to Florida over Veterans’ Day weekend, but her campaign declined to say whether it was business or just a little post-election R&R.
— Mass casualties as driver plows into Hingham Apple store
Just ahead of Black Friday, a driver sped through the front of the Apple store at Derby Street Shops in Hingham in a horrific crash that killed one New Jersey man and injured at least 19. The crash made national headlines as local police and Plymouth County District Attorney Tim Cruz have yet to try to explain the incident, or say whether they believe it was intentional. Multiple people injured and brought to South Shore Hospital or facilities in Boston were dealing with potential “life threatening and limb threatening injuries,” according to doctors.
— Bidens due to arrive on Nantucket today
Gov. Charlie Baker left Massachusetts for Ireland this Thanksgiving, but President Joe Biden arrives today. As is the president’s tradition predating his time in the White House, the Bidens will be celebrating on Nantucket and are due to arrive on the island Tuesday. The Nantucket Current’s Jason Graziadei has more details on the First Family’s trip, including plans to attend the island tree lighting celebration.
— New representative an old pro and novice at the same time
If you’ve run for office in Massachusetts as a Democrat or worked on any campaigns, the chances are good that you’re familiar with Kate Donaghue. If you’re a voter, maybe not. But after door-knocking for countless candidates over decades of work in politics, Donaghue actually rang a few doorbells for herself this year and will be going to Beacon Hill as one of the newest state representatives from Westborough. CommonWealth Magazine’s Michael Jonas details her path through politics in this new profile.
— Baker’s request for migrant housing help may be too late
Ever since a planeload of migrants landed on Martha’s Vineyard courtesy of Gov. Ron DeSantis, Gov. Charlie Baker has been beating the drum of immigration reform. While Baker would like to see Congress come up with a comprehensive plan to deal with border crossings and asylum seekers, he says he would settle for a relaxation of the restrictions on who qualifies for work permits. In the meantime, the state’s emergency family shelter system to deal with an influx of migrants is at capacity and Baker last week filed a bill seeking $130 million to help cover the growing costs of providing shelter to new arrivals. The legislation also proposes to create a state-run center to to help newly arrived migrants find housing and access state and federal benefits, report the Globe’s Mike Damiano and Matt Stout. One hitch, however, might be the timing. Damiano and Stout write that it’s unclear if there’s an appetite in the Legislature to take this up before the end of the year and the changeover in administrations.
— Potential sports betting landscape takes shape
The deadline for companies interested in operating a sports book in Massachusetts passed yesterday, and MassLive’s Alison Kuznitz has the details on the 15 entities that applied – about half the number that initially signaled interest. Of course, Encore Boston Harbor, MGM Springfield and Plainridge Park Casino are in the mix, while DraftKings and FanDuels are among the six groups seeking mobile sports betting licenses.
— What new movie? Theaters hurting for new releases
When’s the last time YOU went out to a movie? With so many streaming services and new releases on platforms like Netflix and Hulu, the box officers are hurting. But there’s apparently another issue to contend with. Not enough movies? The Globe’s Brittany Bowker reports that COVID-19 production delays have led to a fall swoon for megaplexes, while indy theaters are keeping it going by rerunning the classics.
— Amirault pardons may get closer Council scrutiny
Gov. Charlie Baker’s decision to recommend pardons for Gerald Amirault and his sister Cheryl Amirault LeFave in connection to the infamous Fells Acres day care sex abuse case may not get the rubber stamp the Governor’s Council has put on his other pardons and commutations. State House News Service’s Sam Doran quotes councilor Robert Jubinville as calling the other cases “sort of slam dunks,” while the feeling is the council may seek to hold a hearing on the Amiraults. Baker has said he issued the pardons based on questions raised about the investigatory practices used at the time of their convictions, though requests for pardon hearings for both Amiraults had been denied by the Parole Board.
— Someone has to work in all those new labs
It’s not lab space. The Boston Business Journal’s Rowan Walrath reports that Beacon Capital Partners, the trade organization MassBio and the city of Boston are teaming up to build out a new, 4,000-square-foot workforce training center at the site of the former Boston Globe headquarters. It’s expected to open next September and will train workers for careers in the growing biopharmaceuticals industry as technicians, lab assistants, entry-level lab operations managers and biomanufacturing roles.
— Hardwick voters to decide on horse racing in January
Voters in Hardwick will have the final say on a proposal to build a horse breeding and racing facility on a local farm after the town’s Select Board declined to reverse its own favorable vote on the controversial plan. Jim Russell of MassLive and the Telegram’s Jeff Chamer report the board also formed a committee to educate voters on the plan and its impacts ahead of the Jan. 7 referendum.
— Off track? Largest rail union rejects Walsh-negotiated contract
U.S. Labor Secretary Marty Walsh is facing the prospect of a working holiday after the largest union representing railroad workers rejected the contract Walsh helped hammer out back in September in an attempt to avoid a nationwide strike. NPR’s Andrea Hsu reports one union narrowly rejected the deal on Monday and that the race is now on against a Dec. 8 deadline to avoid further job actions by either unions or the railroads. A railroad strike has the potential to severely disrupt the economy during a critical holiday period.
— Stockbridge rejects lower tax rate for full-time residents
All Stockbridge residential property owners will continue to pay taxes at the same level after the Select Board rejected a call to set a second, higher rate for part-time residents, Clarence Fanto of the Berkshire Eagle reports. The board did not formally vote on the plan, but said a projected surge in property tax bills that sparked the idea will not come this year thanks to increases in hotel room taxes and other local revenue sources.
— Congressional leaders urge DOJ action after hospital threats
U.S. Rep. Ayanna Pressley and 35 other members of Congress are calling on the Department of Justice to provide insight into steps being taken to protect children’s hospitals around the country in the wake of direct threats made to facilities in recent weeks. Boston Children’s Hospital has been among those that have received threats. The Globe’s Jessica Bartlett reports Pressley emphasized the urgency given rising threats against the trans and LGBTQ community, including this week’s mass shooting at a Colorado nightclub.