Backers of potential 2024 ballot questions are running toward their next hurdle: 74,574 signatures.

Initiative petition supporters need to get those autographs in to local officials for certification by Nov. 22 (the day before Thanksgiving), ahead of a December deadline to turn the signature pages over to the state Elections Division.

Plenty of high-profile questions grabbing readers’ attention since AG Campbell approved them to move forward to this stage, like campaigns to do away with the MCAS test, open the Legislature’s books to Auditor DiZoglio’s inspection, decriminalize psychedelics, and remove a statewide ban on rent control.

Out of the dozens of petitions originally filed, few are likely to make it all the way to ballots next fall. But let’s take a look at some of the ones that Campbell gave the green light that have gotten a bit less space in the conversation.

Drawing here from the AG’s summaries of the proposals:

  • Questions 23-05 and 23-11: Different specifics, same end result, allowing folks to register to vote, and cast a ballot, on the same visit to their polling place on Election Day
  • Question 23-12: Would step up the minimum wage for tipped workers each year, ultimately matching the state minimum wage in 2029
  • Question 23-15: Voters would be able to petition for a recall election for Constitutional officers from the governor on down, plus state legislators and county officials. (Voters wouldn’t be able to start up a recall drive until after the official has been in office for six months)
  • Question 23-33: Public schools would be required to teach epidemiology to K-12 students, including “the study of disease patterns and risk factors, the causes and origins of diseases, and strategies and measures aimed at preventing the spread of diseases, including vaccination and hygiene practices”
  • Question 23-37: Would take some of the Legislature’s internal rule-setting ability out of elected officials’ hands — carving into the Constitution set parameters around committee structures, requiring elections of the House speaker and Senate president to be done by secret ballot, and stipulating that all lawmakers earn the same paycheck “regardless of seniority or position”
  • Question 23-41: “Indigenous Peoples Day” would replace the state’s recognition of Columbus Day

Should any of these sleeper ballot questions prevail next fall, it would constitute a signature victory for the organizers. For now, those folks will settle for the signatures — a lot of them.

City Councilor’s characterization of Hamas and its actions draws ire

Boston City Councilor Tania Fernandes Anderson has created what the Boston Herald described as an “uproar” in City Hall for describing Hamas as a “military group” and its slaughtering of Israeli civilians as a “military operation.” City Councilor Michael Flaherty told the paper: ““To call them a militant group that launched a massive military operation is completely absurd and disgusting. That wasn’t a military operation. That was a terrorist attack — and it was the worst barbaric aggression towards innocent Jewish people since the Holocaust.” — Boston Herald

Biden nominates acting U.S. attorney for long-term role

Acting U.S. Attorney for Massachusetts Joshua Levy will become just plain U.S. Attorney Joshua Levy if the U.S. Senate approves his nomination Wednesday by President Biden. Levy previously served as an assistant U.S. attorney for Massachusetts carrying out criminal investigations into white collar crime and as a partner at the law firm Ropes & Gray. He was graduated from Brown University and Georgetown University Law Center. He was named to the acting U.S. attorney role after U.S. Attorney Rachel Rollins resigned in May. — WGBH

House advances gun reform package

The state House of Representatives overwhelmingly approved a controversial package of limits on gun ownership yesterday. The bill would grandfather legal ownership of any newly prohibited gun purchased before Aug. 24, 2024. The firearms to be outlawed include any rifle with several characteristics commonly associated with military-style assault rifles, and shotguns equipped for high-speed firing. The Senate is working on its own gun reform package. — Boston Globe

Worcester school board weighs donation from convicted felon’s foundation

The Worcester School Committee will vote Thursday on whether to accept a $350,000 donation from an educational foundation whose founder has been convicted of tax fraud. The Telegram’s Henry Schwan reports the funds from the Gene Haas Foundation would help modernize the advanced manufacturing training facilities at Worcester Technical High. — Worcester Telegram & Gazette

Springfield looks to turn the page after acquittals in Nathan Bill’s case

The final two Springfield police officers charged with helping to cover up a bar fight involving off-duty cops were cleared of all charges on Wednesday and Police Superintendent Cheryl Clapprood says her department is eager to welcome them back–and to close the book on the eight-year legal saga. — MassLive

Live long and prosper

The Museum of Science says it has raised most of the half-million dollars necessary to erect a statue of Mr. Spock’s famous four-fingered “V” salute from Star Trek. The museum is only a few blocks from the West End site where actor Leonard Nimoy, who famously played the half-Vulcan, half-human officer, grew up. Funding for the project came in part from a Google executive who credits Star Trek with fueling his interest in technology. — Axios Boston

Audit of Pittsfield ARPA spending becomes election topic 

An outside auditor’s report finding that the city of Pittsfield did not keep accurate track of its American Rescue Plan spending and somehow reported spending a quarter-million more than it actually had has resurfaced again in the final weeks of the mayoral and city council elections, the Berkshire Eagle’s Meg Britton-Mehlisch reports. — Berkshire Eagle

Attleboro playground targeted with anti-Semitic graffiti 

A playground in Attleboro was defaced with swastikas and other racist and anti-Semitic graffiti, an incident officials say needed to be brought to the public’s attention to emphasize how widespread such incidents have become. — Sun Chronicle

10 communities in Essex County have racial deed covenants

“The deeds of several hundred properties in Essex County — including almost two dozen in Haverhill — contain language that at one time prohibited homes from being sold to people of color or certain ethnic groups, according to a research project,” the Newburyport News reports. — Newburyport News

Big Pharma giant presence will be bigger than expected in Boston

Eli Lilly & Co. said a year ago that a new genetics center it is building along the Fort Point Channel in Boston would have 120 to 150 employees. Now a company executive tells the Boston Globe the $700 million, 12-story center ultimately will house around 500 workers. The center’s genetics-based work at the new site will include working with RNA-centered therapies. — Boston Globe

As Gov. Healey’s new housing proposal sinks in, here are 10 things to know

Gov. Healey’s $4 billion-plus housing proposal contains some two dozen new policy proposals, with the goal of creating 40,000 new units, and the Boston Globe’s Catherine Carlock breaks the bill’s elements into 10 key points. — Boston Globe

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McGovern joins call for cease-fire in Mideast

Somerset considering $20m tax break for Brayton Pt. plant

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.