10:30 a.m. | Gov. Maura Healey swears in Reps.-elect Patricia Haddad of Somerset, Erika Uyterhoeven of Somerville and Margaret Scarsdale of Pepperell in the Governor's Office.
11 a.m. | Gov. Maura Healey swears Secretary of the State William Galvin into office for a new term in the Governor's Office.
12 p.m. | Treasurer Deb Goldberg takes the oath of office for a new term in the Senate Chamber. Gov. Maura Healey, House Speaker Ron Mariano, Secretary of State William Galvin and outgoing Auditor Suzanne Bump are all expected to attend. Healey will offer remarks.
12 p.m. | Former Boston City Councilor Andrea Campbell is sworn in as attorney general at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center. A reception will follow. Gov. Maura Healey attends.
12 p.m. | Sen. Susan Moran hosts a roundtable discussion at the Falmouth Public Library about the ongoing opioid epidemic, substance use treatment and prevention.
2 p.m. | Massachusetts Gaming Commission meets to begin assessing the six applications for mobile sports betting licenses not tied to an existing casino or slots parlor after more than week-long application review.
6 p.m. | Auditor-elect Diana DiZoglio is sworn in at Methuen High School. Gov. Maura Healey attends.
There are inaugurations everywhere you look today. Three House members who – for varying reasons – missed last week’s ceremony will join their colleagues, and the four Constitutional officers not named Healey or Driscoll take their oaths.
This is the easy part of Healey’s job. Swearing people into office. Showing up to support fellow Democrats and friends. But Healey is quietly preparing for an early test next week.
Healey will address business leaders at an executive forum hosted by Associated Industries of Massachusetts next Thursday morning at the Boston Marriott Newton. As important speeches go, a stop at the AIM event has not historically ranked up there with the attention paid to ones given before the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce or the Massachusetts Municipal Association.
But it does come first on the calendar. And given the importance of getting off on the right foot with business leaders after eight years of Charlie Baker, it will be one worth listening too.
It’s not that Healey and business leaders have to agree on everything. But it wouldn’t hurt to at least have a respectful and open relationship. Healey, of course, supported passage of the “millionaire’s tax” on the ballot in November, despite opposition from major business groups.
But her agenda will require cooperation from executives and groups like A.I.M and the Chamber if she hopes to pass meaningful tax reform and advance her housing and climate agendas. She must also walk a fine a line and take care not to appear too cozy with business interests, lest she lose the confidence of an already skeptical progressive left.
— Uncertain future for Cape Cod bridges
After losing out in bids for federal funding to help cover the cost of replacing the Bourne and Sagamore bridges over the Cape Cod Canal, the Globe’s Brian MacQuarrie reports that the state must wait now until next year when the next round of funding becomes available. But time is not on the bridges’ side. The two spans have outlived their usefulness, designed in a different era and badly in need of replacement. So what happens now?
— Sticking with Lyons or moving on?
CommonWealth Magazine’s Shira Schoenberg reports on the race for MassGOP chairman as embattled leader Jim Lyons looks to hold on despite multiple challengers and members of the state committee confront a decision about the party’s future.
— Boston’s ghostly office real estate market
It feels like I’ve shared this story, or some derivation of it, at least a handful of times in the past few months. And that’s probably because it’s happening, and its effects on cities like Boston and the economy are widespread and multifaceted. The Globe’s Catherine Carlock that Boston’s office real estate market ended 2022 with the highest vacancy rate in three decades, fueled by the continuation of remote work and the shaky economy. This has implications not just for the businesses that used to inhabit those spaces, but the businesses who depended on people to come to work in those offices and the vibrancy that can bring to a city.
— Steamship Authority summer reservation debut falls flat
With a light covering of snow on the ground, many Bay Staters woke early Tuesday with thoughts of summer on their mind as the Steamship Authority opened up reservations for summer car ferry bookings. Those dreams quickly turned to nightmares, though, as the SSA’s website struggled to deal with the volume and glitches resulted in people who had been waiting patiently in the virtual queue losing their place in line and getting bumped thousands of spots back. WCVB has more on the booking disaster.
— New green building code being put to the test
A controversial new building code discouraging the use of fossil fuels to heat and cool new construction has been adopted in Brookline and Watertown, testing a piece of the 2021 climate law that some have worried could raise the price of housing and new building in Greater Boston. The Globe’s Sabrina Shankman writes that the two communities are the first to adopt the optional new building code finalized last month, but likely won’t be the last with at least 22 cities and towns considering similar moves.
— Panel finds “no evidence” to support election challenge
Gov. Maura Healey will swear in Rep.-elect Margaret Scarsdale of Pepperell today after a special House panel determined that the Democrat should be seated as the winner in the First Middlesex District. State House News Services’s Chris Lisinski reports that the committee found “no evidence” to support the claims made by her Republican opponent that counting irregularities resulted in her seven-vote win margin. The same panel, however, is still reviewing Republican Rep. Lenny Mirra’s one-vote loss to Democrat Kristin Kassner on the North Shore, and has not yet made a decision. These are the last two outstanding races to be decided.
— Truro, Provincetown plot next steps after ambulance service quits
The Lower Cape Ambulance Association plans to stop providing emergency services to Truro and Provincetown this summer and the two towns on the outermost part of Cape Cod are searching for replacements, the Cape Cod Times’ Denise Coffey reports. The impacts of the changes could help push Provincetown to become the last Cape town to fund a full-time fire department.
— Would-be casino site in Palmer eyed for water park
A parcel of land just off the Mass Pike in Palmer that had been floated for years as a potential casino site could instead host a massive water park after it was sold to a Wisconsin-based developer. MassLive’s Jim Kinney has the details on what could happen on the parcel where Mohegan Sun proposed a resort casino before voters in town shot the notion down in 2013.
— Salem Country Club still battling Peabody over costs of cut trees
Nearly a year after the saga began, the Salem Country Club and the Peabody Conservation Commission continue to battle over the cost of addressing the unauthorized cutting of hundreds of trees near wetlands areas on the golf course, Caroline Enos of The Salem News reports. The club’s owners are now balking at paying for peer review of the replanting plan while the commission says it needs more details about where scores of new trees will be planted after more than 200 were felled last spring.
— Winter winner: Encore table games help state set high score
Encore Boston Harbor posted its best month ever in December as gamblers returned to table games with gusto. When combined with strong months at MGM Springfield and Plainridge Park Casino, the action pushed state casino revenues to a new record high of $28.8 million for the month. Bruce Mohl of CommonWealth has all the numbers.
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