Happening Today:

8:45 | Ipswich Board of Registrars holds a public recount of ballots in the race for state representative in the Second Essex District.

9 a.m. | Massachusetts Clean Energy Center holds event to launch 2030 Fund, a $50 million investment vehicle that will target early-stage companies with promising climate-tech solutions.

9 am | Dunstable Board of Registrars holds a public recount of ballots in the race for state representative in the First Middlesex District..

9:30 a.m. | Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce hosts chief economist for the U.S. Department of Labor Joelle Gamble as part of its economic outlook series. InterContinental Boston, 510 Atlantic Ave., Boston

10 a.m. | Mass. Development Finance Agency meets.

1 p.m. | MBTA Board of Directors Safety, Health and Environment subcommittee meets virtually to discuss the T's ongoing response to the Federal Transit Administration's safety management inspection and safety directives

Warnock wins: The state’s all-Democratic delegation was among those cheering from afar Tuesday night as Sen. Raphael Warnock won a narrow victory in the Georgia Senate runoff over Republican Herschel Walker. Boston.com’s Susannah Subdborough has a rundown of how local pols greeted the news, mostly via Twitter. 

The money chase is on: We’ve never been here before. Billions in funding still unspent and additional billions yet to come. One loses track of how much is at play. Approximately $4 billion between unspent ARPA money and state tax surplus funds (though some will be used towards the recent economic development bill). That’s the financially dizzying situation on Beacon Hill as various groups and causes try to get first in line for the combination of federal and state largess, money destined to burn a hole in the proverbial pocket.

As problems go — having more money than the government has yet figured out how to spend, even after rebating taxpayers about $3 billion — this is a good one to have, but not without its complexities and tensions. Higher education? Yes, it’s been relatively shortchanged. Early education funding, expanded childcare? Clearly a valuable long-term investment. Coalitions are ramping up to make their case and lobbying for dollars will be just as intense as the last session.

-ADVERTISEMENT-

New revenue sources will only up the ante. The Fair Share Amendment, which applies an additional 4% surtax to personal income over $1 million per year, will generate, conservatively, $1 billion per year. No one yet is counting new sports betting revenue, which, in the current budget context, is practically a rounding error: a mere $70 million per year. And the Rainy Day Fund? Estimated to be $8.4 billion by this summer.

Producing a FY 2024 budget will be job one for the Healey administration, a document that is due March 1. Nice to start with an embarrassment of riches.

— Promises to collaborate, but few details, after Healey and Wu meet 

Gov.-elect Maura Healey and Boston Mayor Michelle Wu emerged from their closely watched first meeting on Tuesday promising to collaborate on a host of issues including what to do about Boston’s Mass & Cass situation. The Globe’s Samantha Gross and Sean Phillip Cotter of the Herald report the duo offered few concrete details while meeting the press briefly afterward, though Healey left the door open to supporting Wu’s push for rent stabilization, saying all solutions to the state’s housing crisis should be on the table and emphasizing local decision-making.

The Boston Globe

Boston Herald

— Barstool Sports deal becomes flashpoint in first sports-betting license review 

Some members of the Mass. Gaming Commission are questioning whether the state should issue a sports-betting license to Plainridge Park Casino because of the slot parlor’s business ties to Barstool Sports, Matthew Medsger of the Herald and Estaban Bustillos of GBH report. In reviewing the first license application under the state’s new sports betting law, commissioners cited a recent New York Times article about Barstool founder Dave Portnoy’s own gambling activities as well as the company’s checkered past on other issues. 

Boston Herald

GBH

— Latest MassGOP chair contender seeks party ‘reset’

After weeks of speculation, Amy Carnevale formally launched her bid to become the next leader of the state Republican party, promising fresh leadership and a “much-needed reset,” Gayla Cawley of the Herald reports. A member of the state GOP committee for a decade, the Marblehead resident joins at least three other candidates who hope to unseat Jim Lyons amid fractious splits in the party over the way forward.

Boston Herald

— Tops optional: Healey approves Nantucket topless beach article 

Nantucket’s beaches are about to officially be tops-optional for everyone after the office of Attorney General Maura Healey gave its blessing to a citizens petition article passed at a town meeting in the spring. Jason Graziadei of the Nantucket Current reports the island’s select board is set to discuss next steps on Wednesday night and also has the reaction of the local woman who led the charge for the change. 

Nantucket Current

— Sheriff summit: After heated campaign, Hodgson, Heroux talk transition

Outgoing Bristol County Sheriff Thomas Hodgson and incoming sheriff Paul Heroux met for the first time since the closely watched election that saw Heroux end Hodgson’s 25-year run in the office, David Linton of the Sun-Chronicle reports. Heroux and Hodgson were apparently able to clear up come confusion about whether a concession call was ever made and Hodgson said he was encouraged to hear Heroux say reports that emerged during the campaign that he planned to clean house once in office were overblown.

Sun-Chronicle

— Quincy mayor lays out plans to honor Massachusett Tribe

Quincy Mayor Thomas Koch is laying out steps the city plans to take to honor the Massachusett Tribe’s historical ties to the region, including erecting a new statue and making changes to the curriculum taught in local schools, Mary Whitfill of the Patriot Ledger reports. The commitments come after a meeting between Koch and members of the tribe’s Neponset band, who said they welcomed the moves and hope they clear the way for other communities to follow suit.

Patriot Ledger

— Smith & Wesson says inflation drove drop in sales 

Springfield-based gunmaker Smith & Wesson says its sales fell 47 percent last quarter as inflation and other economic factors reduced demand for its products. MassLive’s Jim Russell reports the quarter represents more of a return to normal for the weapons manufacturer after two years of strong sales driven in part by the pandemic.

MassLive

— Amid hiring challenges, New Bedford mulls big pay hikes for city workers 

Salaries for some key positions in New Bedford government could increase 30 to 50 percent as part of an adjustment meant to make the city more attractive to prospective employees.  Arthur Hirsch of the New Bedford Light reports the push to adjust pay comes as the city has seen 52 applicants, some of whom were deep into the screening process, turn down jobs.

New Bedford Light

— Staying green: Mass. ranked near top on energy efficiency again

For the second straight year, a national report ranks Massachusetts as one of the country’s most energy-efficient states, Christian Wade of the Eagle-Tribune reports. This year’s report from the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy ranked the Bay State second behind only California and gave the state high marks for a recently passed clean-energy law and for following California’s lead on policies that encourage adoption of zero-emission vehicles.

The Eagle-Tribune

More Headlines

Metro

Bay State College, already on probation over financial and staffing concerns, lays off key positions

Muslim firefighter sues Boston for putting him on unpaid leave for refusing Covid-19 shots

Morocco fans close down Route 1A in Revere after World Cup victory over Spain

Massachusetts

UMass Lowell, Analog Devices team up for new learning lab

In major policy shift, Massachusetts clears marijuana growers to use certain pesticides

UClub, popular among UMass faculty, to close permanently

National

GE buys out entire NYT print paper in historic first

Justice Dept. subpoenas Ariz., Mich., Wis. officials in Trump Jan. 6 probe

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.

Keith Regan is a freelance writer and local news junkie who has been on the MASSterList morning beat since the newsletter’s earliest days. A graduate of Northeastern University and Emerson College, Regan lives in Hopkinton with his wife, Lisa.