... NOAA confirmed third known right whale mortality of 2018 ...... Tax collections keep state on track to lower income tax to 5.05 percent ...... With revenues running $323 mil over benchmarks, Baker administration sticks to original fiscal 2019 revenue estimate ...... Contractor working 24-7 to finish work on drawbridge project before planned June casino opening in Everett ...... House includes mysterious $2 million appropriation for Senate in redraft of Gov. Baker's supplemental budget ...... In endorsing Question 1, Mayor Walsh cites help of nurses during his battle with cancer ...... Salt prices down 20 percent compared to last year, highway chief Gulliver tells MassDOT Board ...... Legislative committee plans Oct. 30 oversight hearing on DDS policies governing sexual abuse reports ...... Jewish Community Housing for the Elderly rebrands as 2Life Communities ...... Area north of Boston in store for four major road and bridge projects ...... ...
Latest Headlines:
House:
ADJOURNED 'til Monday at 11 a.m. (informal)
Senate:
ADJOURNED 'til Monday at 11 a.m. (no calendar)

LATEST DESPITE ASSURANCES, UNCORRECTED NURSES AD RAN ON TV

The Yes on 1 campaign said Wednesday it had corrected ads in support of nurse staffing mandates that misrepresented reporting done by the State House News Service, but some uncorrected ads continued to run, including during Thursday night's TBS broadcast of the Boston Red Sox playoff game where they clinched the American League pennant. Read More

STUNT WATCH: DEMS DELIVER WAFFLES TO BAKER'S OFFICE

Gov. Charlie Baker's debate performance Wednesday night earned him a Friday morning breakfast delivery from the Massachusetts Democratic Party. Read More

Massachusetts Democratic Party interns Olivia Repo

Massachusetts Democratic Party interns Olivia Reposa and Mary Donnelly handed a bundle of waffles to Gov. Charlie Baker's receptionist on Friday morning. [Photo: Katie Lannan/SHNS] | Hi-Res


LABOR FORCE GROWS, JOBS DOWN BY 6,200 IN SEPTEMBER

Massachusetts lost 6,200 jobs in September and the unemployment rate remained at 3.6 percent, according to new data. Read More


LOCKED OUT GRID WORKERS CLEARED TO ASSIST IN MERRIMACK VALLEY

As union leadership continues to call out what it says are dangerous gas leaks in National Grid territory, gas workers locked out of their jobs by the company amid a long contract dispute have been cleared to help with restoration of the gas system in the Merrimack Valley. Read More


Thursday, Oct. 18, 2018

RECREATIONAL POT TESTING APPROVED AT LABS IN SALEM AND FRAMINGHAM

Marijuana regulators on Thursday approved two testing laboratories to inspect all non-medical marijuana sold in Massachusetts, bringing the state one step closer to the legal marijuana industry sanctioned by voters two years ago. Read More


GROUPS HOPE ELECTIONS WILL BOOST MILLENNIAL REPRESENTATION

Members of the millennial generation account for about 6 percent of all state lawmakers nationwide, and that percentage could nearly double after this fall's elections, according to a new tally. Read More


HEALEY: HEALTH CARE BUREAUCRACY TOO DENSE FOR CONSUMERS

With enrollment in high-deductible insurance plans increasing, the job of controlling out-of-pocket consumer health care costs is increasingly falling to consumers but it's "often nearly impossible" for patients to get price information before obtaining services, according to Attorney General Maura Healey. Read More


METHUEN BORROWING BILL INCLUDES POSSIBLE CONTROL BOARD

The city of Methuen will face new checks on its finances under legislation moving through the House and Senate that will allow city officials to borrow up to $4 million to balance its budget this fiscal year and in fiscal 2020. Read More


SENATE SESSION - THURSDAY, OCT. 18, 2018

A bill that would allow the city of Methuen to borrow up to $4 million "to achieve a balanced budget for fiscal years 2019 and 2020" emerged from Senate Ways and Means on Thursday, and the branch whisked it through initial approval and passage. The Senate also gave initial approval to a bill allowing the Weymouth retirement board to calculate pension payments for the widow of fallen police officer Michael Chesna, who was posthumously promoted to sergeant, as if he held the higher rank at the time he was killed while pursuing a suspect in July. Read More


SHERIFF'S OPIOID ADDICTION TREATMENT PROGRAM GETS NATIONAL RECOGNITION

A drug addiction treatment program run out of the Middlesex Sheriff's office earned national accolades this week as one of a handful of programs across the country leading the way on providing medication-assisted treatment in jails. Read More


HOUSE SESSION - THURSDAY, OCT. 18, 2018

Bills addressing local matters in Chicopee, Somerville, Stoughton and Northfield were advanced in the House's 10-minute session on Thursday. Two bills amending Greenfield's charter were consolidated into one, and then passed. The House meets next on Monday. Read More


CIVIL RIGHTS GROUP CHANGES NAME TO MARK 50 YEARS

A Boston-based legal organization involved in multiple lawsuits against the Trump administration is changing its name as it celebrates its 50th anniversary. Read More


DEMS DIG BAKER OVER HIS PUSH TO FLIP U.S. SENATE SEAT FOR GOP

Gov. Charlie Baker's waffling in his support for Republican Senate candidate Geoff Diehl Wednesday night reopened a wound for the governor who was criticized Thursday for both backing a strong supporter of President Donald Trump and for hesitating to defend that position. Read More

Democrat for governor Jay Gonzalez criticized Gov.

Democrat for governor Jay Gonzalez criticized Gov. Charlie Baker on Thursday for "playing politics" by wavering in his support for Senate candidate Geoff Diehl. The candidate was joined by NARAL Pro-Choice political director Gena Frank, state Senate candidate Katie McBrine, Boston City Councilor Michelle Wu and his running mate Quentin Palfrey. [Photo: Matt Murphy/SHNS] | Hi-Res


WITH LATEST AUCTION, FEDS SEE BIG ENERGY POTENTIAL OFF MASSACHUSETTS COAST

The federal government plans in December to hold an offshore wind auction featuring 390,000 acres off the coast of Massachusetts, an area that officials say could provide enough power to serve 1.5 million homes. Read More


BAKER TALKS SUPPORT FOR DIEHL AS FIGHT FOR SENATE CONTROL UNWINDS

Gov. Charlie Baker on Thursday reiterated his intent to vote for Republican U.S. Senate candidate Geoff Diehl, a day after first saying he hadn't decided how he'd vote and later telling reporters he misspoke. Read More


CIVIL SUIT AGAINST ROSENBERG, HEFNER DROPPED

A former legislative aide has dropped a civil lawsuit against former Senate President Stanley Rosenberg and his husband Bryon Hefner that alleged sexual assault by Hefner, according to the man's lawyer. Read More

ROSENBERG / HEFNER

ROSENBERG / HEFNER


Wednesday, Oct. 17, 2018

GONZALEZ RIPS BAKER AFTER GUV WAVERS ON DIEHL DURING DEBATE

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Jay Gonzalez seized Wednesday night on Gov. Charlie Baker's wavering over whether or not he will vote for Republican U.S. Senate candidate Geoff Diehl as Gonzalez attempts to dislodge the incumbent Republican from the corner office. Read More


YARASHUS CONFIRMED FOR SUPERIOR COURT JUDGESHIP

The Governor's Council on Wednesday unanimously consented to a Superior Court judgeship for Meehan Boyle attorney Valerie Yarashus. Read More


BIG UNION THAT BACKED COAKLEY SITTING OUT BAKER-GONZALEZ RACE

One of the state's most politically active unions that opposed Gov. Charlie Baker four years ago has decided to sit out the governor's race in both a tacit acceptance of the Republican and a blow to the ability of the Democratic nominee Jay Gonzalez to compete with outside spending on behalf of the governor. Read More


AS VOTE LOOMS, NURSE STAFFING LEVELS DEBATED AT COST TRENDS HEARING

With 20 days to go until Massachusetts voters will decide an initiative petition calling for nurse staffing requirements, health policy experts convened a panel Wednesday afternoon to try to understand what that proposed law's impact on the cost, access to and quality of health care in Massachusetts would be. Read More

Health policy experts convened a panel Wednesday a

Health policy experts convened a panel Wednesday afternoon to discuss the impacts of the proposed law in question 1. [Photo: Health Policy Commission] | Hi-Res


WALSH

WALSH: VIOLENCE SHOWS NEED TO ADDRESS "SOFT" GUN LAWS

After a 24-year-old woman on Monday became the eighth person killed by gun violence in less than two weeks in Boston, Mayor Marty Walsh this week blasted the state's gun laws for "getting kind of soft," and suggested he would look to Beacon Hill to get tougher. Read More


LICENSES FOR TWO POT TESTING LABS UP FOR VOTES

Yet another barrier to the start of legal retail marijuana sales could be removed Thursday when the Cannabis Control Commission is expected to take a vote on final approval for two testing laboratories. Read More


"ENFORCEMENT HAT" KEEPING HEALEY OUT OF NURSE STAFFING DEBATE

Attorney General Maura Healey is not taking a position on Question 1, which would limit how many patients could be assigned to registered nurses, because her office would have an enforcement role to play under the proposed ballot law, she said Wednesday. Read More


BRISTOL COUNTY ATTORNEY NOMINATED FOR JUDGESHIP

A Bristol County assistant district attorney was nominated Wednesday for a District Court circuit judgeship by Gov. Charlie Baker. Read More


"STRONG CONDITIONS" NEEDED ON BETH ISRAEL-LAHEY HEALTH DEAL, HEALEY SAYS


Attorney General Maura Healey said Wednesday she was pleased that the state Public Health Council had attached additional conditions to the Beth Israel Deaconess-Lahey Health megamerger, but that her office still faced an "intense amount" of work as it reviews the deal. Read More


QUESTION 1 CAMPAIGN CORRECTS AD THAT MISREPRESENTED SHNS REPORTING

A new ad paid for by the Yes on 1 campaign in support of nurse staffing mandates misrepresented reporting done by the State House News Service and was changed on Wednesday, a day after it went online, to eliminate an erroneous claim that the news wire had blamed hospitals for making "false claims" in the heat of the ballot campaign. Read More


WALSH OUTLINES BOSTON'S PLANS TO ADDRESS RISING SEAS

Boston Mayor Martin Walsh on Wednesday laid out an expansive plan for public projects to combat the impacts of climate change in Boston, a city whose vulnerability has been exposed in recent storms and tidal surges. Read More

Boston Mayor Martin Walsh on Wednesday unveiled an

Boston Mayor Martin Walsh on Wednesday unveiled an ambitious plan to combat climate change in the city. [Photo: Chris Triunfo/SHNS] | Hi-Res


BAKER, STATES ACTIVE IN QUEST TO SLOW DRUG COST ESCALATION

Gov. Charlie Baker's administration is preparing to roll out a proposal to allow the state to negotiate prices directly with drug manufacturers and possibly hold price hearings as he seeks to curb what he called "the single biggest driver, at this point, to the rising cost of health care in Massachusetts." Read More


VIDEO | GALVIN SEES "STRONG AND HEALTHY" VOTER TURNOUT NOV. 6

With early voting set to begin in communities across Massachusetts on Monday, Secretary of State William Galvin on Wednesday said key indicators like registrations and absentee voting activity point to a "strong and healthy turnout in November." Read More

Secretary William Galvin said he hopes to see a hi

Secretary William Galvin said he hopes to see a high percentage of voters utilize early voting, which starts in some communities on Monday. [Photo: Sam Doran/SHNS] | Hi-Res


BAKER PREPARING NEW PRESCRIPTION DRUG PLAN

[Story Developing] Gov. Charlie Baker's administration is preparing to roll out a proposal to allow the state to negotiate prices directly with drug manufacturers and possibly hold price hearings as he seeks to curb what he called "the single biggest driver, at this point, to the rising cost of health care in Massachusetts." Read More


Tuesday, Oct. 16, 2018

VIDEO | AFTER VOTING TWICE FOR NURSE STAFFING LIMITS, DeLEO NOW UNSURE ABOUT QUESTION 1

House Speaker Robert DeLeo has not yet decided how he will vote on an issue that has become one of this year's most contentious election topics, the ballot question limiting how many patients can be assigned to each nurse in hospitals and health care facilities. Read More

Ways and Means Chairman Jeff Sanchez had a word in

Ways and Means Chairman Jeff Sanchez had a word in Speaker Robert DeLeo's ear while DeLeo waited to speak at the Health Policy Commission cost trends hearing on Tuesday. [Photo: Sam Doran/SHNS] | Hi-Res


AS RGA HELPS LIFT BAKER, DGA $$$ NOT FLOWING TO GONZALEZ

National Democrats so far have written off Jay Gonzalez's campaign for governor as one not worth investing in despite the Democratic Governors Association this week reporting record fundraising. Read More

Democratic Party Chairman Gus Bickford says Gov. B

Democratic Party Chairman Gus Bickford says Gov. Baker is "scared to death to be seen with Geoff Diehl." [Photo: Sam Doran/SHNS/File 2018] | Hi-Res


DeLEO ON SIDELINES FOR NOW AMID NURSE STAFFING SHOWDOWN

[Coverage Developing] With three weeks to go until voters will be asked to weigh in on significant health care policy, House Speaker Robert DeLeo has not decided how he will vote on the ballot question limiting how many patients can be assigned to each nurse in hospitals and health care facilities. Read More


DEMOCRAT REP. MARKEY CAMPAIGNING WITH BAKER TUESDAY

As Democrat Jay Gonzalez struggles to generate energy among Democrats on Beacon Hill, Dartmouth Democrat Rep. Christopher Markey plans to join Republican Gov. Charlie Baker on the campaign trail Tuesday. Read More


VIDEO | HILL'S BIG THREE POINT TO ANOTHER RUN AT HEALTH CARE OVERHAUL

After picking up the pieces from a failed attempt at the end of formal legislative business to agree on a health care bill, the Massachusetts Legislature is gearing up to take another crack at stabilizing community hospitals and limiting the growth of consumer health costs. Read More

Speaker Robert DeLeo told the Health Policy Commis

Speaker Robert DeLeo told the Health Policy Commission that "the House will try again" on a health care bill next session. [Photo: Sam Doran/SHNS] | Hi-Res


BABY IN HAND, GOLDBERG ANNOUNCES COLLEGE SAVINGS EFFORT

Starting Jan. 1, 2020, every child born or adopted as a Massachusetts resident will be eligible for a free $50 deposit into a college savings account, state officials announced Tuesday. Read More

Mayor Martin Walsh and Treasurer Deborah Goldberg

Mayor Martin Walsh and Treasurer Deborah Goldberg on Tuesday announced the launch of a new college savings program, funded by Robert Hildreth (far left). [Photo: Chris Triunfo/SHNS] | Hi-Res


THIRD RIGHT WHALE DEATH THIS YEAR CONFIRMED BY NOAA

According to the federal government, the North Atlantic right whale is one of the world's most endangered large whale species, with only an estimated 450 remaining. As of this year, there are at least three fewer. Read More


AFTER 50 YEARS, HOUSING GROUP REBRANDS AS 2LIFE COMMUNITIES

A non-profit that for more than 50 years has provided safe and affordable housing to older adults in the Greater Boston area is rebranding itself. Read More


STATE SEES SALT SAVINGS

Government agencies responsible for keeping winter roads dry and safe could be in for some major financial savings in the coming months. Read More


Read more in the Monthly Digest


 
 
State House News Service