... Baker suggests structure to shed light on purpose of legal fees paid by Legislature ...... Mass Home Care says Senate health care bill proposes largest funding cut in program's 43-year history ...... After saying he planned to stay on, Attleboro mayor-elect Rep. Heroux plans to resign his House seat ...... Baker says current English language learning law working well for thousands in Massachusetts ...... Contraception bill was good opportunity for Mass. to "send a message" to others, Baker says ...... Sen. Chandler to Gov. Baker at contraception bill signing: "Thank you so much for supporting our work" ...... Women "we will never know about" will make family planning choice thanks to new law, Rep. Haddad says ...... Veteran Rep. Kaufman, 70, of Lexington, will not seek re-election in 2018 ...... Home care bill heads back to Baker with workers still concerned about their own privacy considerations ...... MTF releases look at health care trust funds ...
Latest Headlines:
House:
ADJOURNED 'til Wednesday at 11 a.m. (informal)
Senate:
ADJOURNED 'til Wednesday at 11 a.m. (no calendar)

TOPBAKER DECLARATION ALTERS DYNAMICS ON DISTRACTED DRIVING BILL

Gov. Charlie Baker said Tuesday he supports a ban
Gov. Charlie Baker said Tuesday he supports a ban on hand-held phone use while driving, a shift from his position in February. [Photo: Sam Doran/SHNS] | Hi-Res

A rise in fatal accidents caused by distracted driving and advances in technology prompted Gov. Charlie Baker to throw his support on Tuesday behind a ban on using handheld devices while driving, giving a boost to an initiative debated for years by policy leaders and increasing pressure on the House to act on the matter. Read More

LATEST TWO-GENERATIONAL APPROACH TO STATE SERVICES EXPLORED

Anna Grimes had just graduated high school in Illinois when she found out she was pregnant. She opted to go to community college instead of the school she'd originally chosen, where she'd have no housing options or supports as a parent. Read More

Isis Patterson, a mother and public policy student in Endicott College's Keys to Degrees program for student parents, testified with fellow participants Sarah Galison and Anna Grimes. [Photo: Katie Lannan/SHNS] | Hi-Res

DNC CHIEF BOLTS STATE HOUSE AFTER EVENT

While Republicans are gearing up to try to overthrow Sen. Elizabeth Warren and maintain their hold on the governor's office in Massachusetts, the national head of the Democrats visited Beacon Hill on Tuesday but was in no mood to talk. Read More


BROADBAND, SOLDIERS HOME $$$ SIGNED INTO LAW

Communities still disconnected from broadband communications will get help and the state will use $199 million to replace the long-term care facility at the Chelsea Soldiers Home, under legislation signed Tuesday by Gov. Charlie Baker. Read More


JONES

MAYOR WARREN DROPS REP. JONES FROM HIS CAMPAIGN EMAIL LIST

House Minority Leader Brad Jones didn't like an email he received at 9:30 a.m. Tuesday from Setti Warren, a Democrat running for governor. Read More


BAKER DECLARATION ALTERS DYNAMICS ON DISTRACTED DRIVING BILL

[Story Developing] The Senate passed a bill in late June banning people from using handheld devices while driving and Gov. Charlie Baker on Tuesday turned up pressure on the House to act by declaring his support for the idea, months after questioning it. Read More


CCC SEES "SEMINAL WEEK" AHEAD FOR MARIJUANA POLICY DEBATE

Genuine debate on marijuana policy and how the legal pot industry should look in Massachusetts is likely coming from the Cannabis Control Commission during the middle two weeks of December, which are shaping up to be the CCC's busiest yet as the agency tries to file the first draft of its regulations by Dec. 29. Read More


BAKER STANDS BY TRAN, AND DRAWS ATTACK FROM KERRIGAN

Congressional candidate Steve Kerrigan accused Gov. Charlie Baker Tuesday of a "shameful display of putting party over principles" after the governor doubled down on his support for state Senate candidate Dean Tran despite disagreements over a transgender protection law and funding for Planned Parenthood. Read More


HEALEY: TRUMP'S HAITI TPS DECISION "RECKLESS, ILLEGAL"

The main course at Tuesday's annual Thanksgiving luncheon to honor immigrants was cooked up by the Trump administration, which has elected to end Haitians' seven-year-old temporary protected status in the U.S. in July 2019. While guests cleared their plates of stuffing, mashed potatoes and cranberry sauce, speaker after speaker in the Great Hall dug into the federal policy that was announced the night before. Read More

The decision on temporary protected status for Hai

The decision on temporary protected status for Haitians is "neither a defeat nor a victory, but rather a call to action," wrote Sen. Linda Dorcena Forry. [Photo: Sam Doran/SHNS] | Hi-Res


HEALTH ADVOCATES CELEBRATE COURT-ORDERED TOBACCO COMPANY ADS

Readers of 40 major newspapers across the country will open their papers Sunday to full-page ads, purchased by tobacco companies, advising that smoking kills an average of 1,200 Americans a day, that nicotine changes the brain, and that there is no safe level of secondhand smoke exposure. Read More


CAMPAIGNS CONFIDENT OF SIGNATURES FOR SALES TAX CUT, MINIMUM WAGE, PAID LEAVE

Proponents of a major sales tax cut and supporters of a $15 minimum wage and a paid family and medical leave proposal say they've gathered more than enough signatures to advance their proposals, setting up issues showdowns in the Legislature in early 2018. Read More


[Courtesy/RMV]

PHOTO ID NOW REQUIRED TO ENTER MAJOR STATE OFFICE BUILDING

Visitors to any of the state agencies in the McCormack Building across Bowdoin Street from the State House now have to show a photo ID to enter, part of a new policy that took effect Monday. Read More


Monday, Nov. 20, 2017

BAKER

BAKER STICKING WITH TRAN DESPITE DEM ATTACKS

The Massachusetts Democratic Party wants Gov. Charlie Baker to withdraw his support for Fitchburg City Councilor Dean Tran, who is running for state Senate, over Tran's opposition to public support for Planned Parenthood and concerns with the state's transgender public accommodations protection law that Baker signed. Read More


PAYING FOR A RIDE ON THE T COULD LOOK DIFFERENT IN THREE YEARS

The MBTA on Monday moved towards overhauling its fare collection system to eliminate cash from its trolleys and buses and to give riders the ability to pay onboard with a credit card or smartphone, changes the T says will help keep the transit system running on time. Read More


BAKER

MOORE SHOULD DROP OUT OF SENATE RACE, GUV SAYS

Republican Senate nominee Roy Moore should withdraw from his race in Alabama after allegations he had multiple inappropriate relationships with underage women, Gov. Charlie Baker said Monday. Read More


MASS. MIDDLE CLASS MAY TAKE "BIGGEST HIT" UNDER FED TAX REFORM, BAKER SAYS

The tax bill that passed the U.S. House last Thursday and is on a fast-track in the U.S. Senate would benefit the wealthy at the expense of working people, Republican Gov. Charlie Baker said Monday. Read More


BILINGUAL ED SYSTEM WORKING WELL FOR "TENS OF THOUSANDS," BAKER SAYS

Gov. Charlie Baker has yet to decide what he'll do with a bilingual education bill lawmakers sent him last week, but said Monday he expects to make up his mind within the next two days. Read More


DEMS URGE BAKER TO WITHDRAW SUPPORT FOR SENATE CANDIDATE

Gov. Charlie Baker has tried, often against the odds, to grow the Republican Party since his 2014 election, but often times that means siding with candidates that don't perfectly align with his brand of moderate, socially liberal Republicanism. Read More

Worcester County Sheriff Lew Evangelidis campaigne

Worcester County Sheriff Lew Evangelidis campaigned with Senate candidate Dean Tran. [Photo: Courtesy]


BAKER SAYS HE'LL BE "WORKING HARD" AGAINST TRANSGENDER LAW REPEAL

Once non-committal on the idea of expanding protections for transgender people, Gov. Charlie Baker on Monday said he expects to work hard to defeat a ballot measure seeking to repeal the transgender rights law he signed last year. Read More


LINDSTROM

LINDSTROM: LIFT "VEIL OF SECRECY" OVER SEXUAL HARASSMENT IN CONGRESS

Saying it would enable more victims to go public without fear of liability, U.S. Senate candidate Beth Lindstrom called Monday for Congressional leaders to waive damages for breach of confidentiality in sexual harassment settlements against members of Congress and their staff. Read More


DEM FIELD IN THIRD CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT EXPANDS TO 11 CANDIDATES

Democrats in the Merrimack Valley could either select a candidate for the Third Congressional District seat or field a football team. The Democratic field now stands at 11 candidates after state Sen. Barbara L'Italien made her candidacy official on Monday morning following a months-long exploration of the possibility of running to replace retiring U.S. Rep. Niki Tsongas. Read More

Sen. Barbara L'Italien has served in the state Sen

Sen. Barbara L'Italien has served in the state Senate since 2015. [Photo: Sam Doran/File/SHNS] | Hi-Res


SENATE SESSION – MONDAY, NOV. 20, 2017

Monday's Senate session concluded without the appointment of a conference committee to negotiate conflicting House and Senate criminal justice reform bills. The Senate, which passed its bill late last month, has not yet received the bill the House approved Wednesday on a 144-9 vote, according to the clerk. Sen. Joseph Boncore, who presided over the informal session Monday, said he did not know when a conference committee would be named. The Senate sent a sick leave bank bill to Gov. Charlie Baker's desk before adjourning in memory of a Newton community leader, Rodney Barker. Read More


NOAA WITHDRAWS APPROVAL OF NORTHEAST FISHERY OPERATIONS PLAN

Ordering vessels to report to port immediately, federal fisheries regulators on Monday morning withdrew their approval of the Northeast fisheries operations plan, saying its continuance would undermine conservation and management objectives. Read More


JUSTICE BILLS FEATURE BURIAL EXPENSE MEASURES

[Developing] Families with members who have been murdered will have easier access to state funding to bury their loved ones under legislation that passed the House and Senate as part of an omnibus criminal justice bill. Read More


DOCS GROUP: 13,000 HAVE TAKEN ITS FREE PAIN MANAGEMENT COURSES

Since it began offering free pain management courses in 2015, more than 13,000 individuals have taken one or more of the courses, according to the Massachusetts Medical Society. Read More


BAKER CURIOUS ABOUT HOUSE AND SENATE LEGAL SPENDING

Gov. Charlie Baker said Monday his administration would look into whether the Legislature should be more transparent about the purpose of payments made to a host of law firms for unspecified legal fees from accounts that difficult to track. Read More


SURROUNDED BY DEMS, BAKER SIGNS FREE CONTRACEPTION BILL

Gov. Charlie Baker signed a law Monday that insulates Massachusetts from federal changes to birth control coverage under Obamacare, protecting a woman's right to free contraception in a move that supporters, including the governor, cheered as a message to Republicans in Washington. Read More

Lawmakers looked on as Gov. Charlie Baker signed t

Lawmakers looked on as Gov. Charlie Baker signed the ACCESS bill into law on Monday. [Photo: Sam Doran/SHNS] | Hi-Res


BAKER: TOP STATIES MOVED ON "ON THEIR OWN"

The former State Police superintendent and his top deputy stepped down their posts of their own accord and not in response to a request from the governor, Gov. Charlie Baker said Monday. Read More


HOUSE, SENATE JUSTICE BILLS BOTH FEATURE BURIAL EXPENSE MEASURES

The families of murder victims would no longer be disqualified from receiving state burial assistance merely because of their loved ones' criminal actions under legislation that passed the House and Senate as part of an omnibus criminal justice bill. Read More

Isaura Mendes, a mother and aunt of homicide victi

Isaura Mendes, a mother and aunt of homicide victims, applauded Monday as Rep. Evandro Carvalho spoke at an event to commemorate victims and their families. [Photo: Andy Metzger/SHNS]


$1 BILLION GREEN LINE EXTENSION CONTRACT AWARDED

The MBTA's Fiscal and Management Control Board on Monday awarded a $1.08 billion design and construction contract for the long-awaited Green Line Extension project, the most concrete step yet for a project once thought to be at risk of falling by the wayside. Read More

The Green Line Extension project is slated for com

The Green Line Extension project is slated for completion on Dec. 10, 2021, according to the project manager. [Photo: Katie Lannan/File/SHNS] | Hi-Res


GAS AVERAGING $2.53 HEADING INTO THANKSGIVING

AAA estimated nine of every ten Thanksgiving season travelers will use their vehicles to get to and from destinations and they'll face an average per gallon gas price of $2.53 this week. Read More

Gas prices showed no change over the past week, AA

Gas prices showed no change over the past week, AAA said. [Photo: Craig Sandler/File/SHNS] | Hi-Res


BAKER IN SWAMPSCOTT, POLITO IN FLORIDA FOR THANKSGIVING

As she does most years, Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito leaves Monday for southern Florida where she will spend Thanksgiving week in Naples with family, according to staff. Read More

A rafter of turkeys made themselves at home in Gov

A rafter of turkeys made themselves at home in Gov. Charlie Baker's backyard on Nov. 17. [Photo: Courtesy/Twitter] | Hi-Res


HOUSE SESSION – MONDAY, NOV. 20, 2017

There was no action Monday in the House on two timely issues: naming a conference committee to hash out differences between the House and Senate criminal justice bills and setting a timeframe for a special election to replace Rep. Paul Heroux of Attleboro. As of Monday morning, Heroux had not filed an official letter of resignation with the House clerk's office; an aide to Attleboro's mayor-elect said Friday that Heroux notified House Speaker Robert DeLeo of his intention to give up his House seat and that the official resignation letter was in the process of being drafted or delivered to the clerk. The House wrapped up consideration of its criminal justice reform package last week, but the Senate did not have the amended bill as of Monday morning so a conference committee of three representatives and three senators could not be appointed Monday. Absent advancement of those issues, the House used Monday's session to move bills affecting local affairs in Fairhaven, Berlin, Middleton and Lincoln. Both branches return on Wednesday morning for informal sessions. Read More


Read more in the Monthly Digest


 
 
State House News Service