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The Mayflower's 1620 voyage to Plymouth Colony is memorialized, surmounted by a Pilgrim's captain hat, in a stained glass window in a door to the Senate president's office at the State House. [Sam Doran/SHNS]

Thanksgiving Proclamation: “Remember and Reach Out to Our Neighbors in Need”

Unlike scads of other special days set aside by lawmakers, no statute requires the governor to officially declare a Thanksgiving holiday. But governors have always done so by custom, in a tradition stretching back to Gov. John Hancock in 1780, to frame what Bay Staters can appreciate about their lot in life and how they can express that thanks.


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Feds Give Compressor Station Approval to Start Up

Enbridge will start pumping natural gas through its Weymouth compressor station next month after federal regulators on Wednesday gave the final green light, ruling that the company sufficiently corrected any issues behind two emergency shutdowns this fall.


Walsh: Latest Virus Data Heading in “Right Direction”

On paper at least, the coronavirus situation in Boston looks to be improving to the point that leaders could soon start planning to bring students back into classrooms, Mayor Martin Walsh said Wednesday as he urged caution on Thanksgiving to keep the tenuous positive trend going.


State House Takeout Podcast

Council’s Vote Certification Marks End of Mass. 2020 Election

The 2020 election came to an official end in Massachusetts on Wednesday, with a unanimous vote by the Governor's Council to certify the results.


Uncaptioned image for story:Wendlandt Confirmed to Join Supreme Judicial Court

Wendlandt Confirmed to Join Supreme Judicial Court

Judge Dalila Argaez Wendlandt on Wednesday was unanimously confirmed by the Governor's Council for a seat on the Supreme Judicial Court, where she will become the state's first Latina high court justice.


Senate Session Summary - Wednesday, Nov. 25

The Senate stuck to lighter fare Wednesday before breaking for a long Thanksgiving weekend with six meaty pieces of legislation still on their plates, or at least somewhere in the kitchen. When the Senate returns to session Monday morning, Thanksgiving will have flown past without the budget accord that Gov. Baker had wanted to see before his turkey dinner.


Uncaptioned image for story:Regulators Approve Takeout Alcoholic Beverages at Three Encore Restaurants

Regulators Approve Takeout Alcoholic Beverages at Three Encore Restaurants

The Gaming Commission agreed Wednesday to allow three of the restaurants at Encore Boston Harbor to sell alcoholic beverages with take-out food orders and the chairwoman encouraged people to consider getting their Thanksgiving meal from the Everett casino.


House Session Summary - Wednesday, Nov. 25, 2020

The Committee on Election Laws is newly in receipt of two local bills filed this week by Gov. Charlie Baker, but the Legislature will go into the Thanksgiving break without having put a fiscal year 2021 state budget on the governor's desk. Baker in October had said he would ideally like to have the budget finalized by this week, but that bill is still being negotiated by the House and Senate, which formed a budget conference committee on Monday.


Baker Bill Authorizes Mail-In, Early Voting in Newton

Offering another vote of confidence in new voting options, Gov. Charlie Baker on Tuesday filed a bill to let the city of Newton use mail-in, early and expanded absentee voting next year.


Oliveira Set to Join Legislature After Harrington Drops Recount

The last outstanding Massachusetts legislative race came to a full close last week when Republican candidate James "Chip" Harrington dropped his recount push.


State: Public School Enrollment Dropped By 37,000

About 37,000 fewer students are enrolled in Massachusetts schools this year, representing a steep decline that far exceeds the usual churn, though the state's education commissioner expects to see some of those students return to the public school system next year.


Boston Sports Club Disregarded Consumer Laws, Suit Alleges

Boston Sports Clubs gyms showed "total disregard" for members during the COVID-19 pandemic by continuing to charge fees to customers who tried to cancel, Attorney General Maura Healey alleged Tuesday as she unveiled a lawsuit against the company.


Marijuana Retailers Ready to Sue Over Delivery Rules

Commissioners seem ready to close out a bumpy policy-setting process next week with a vote to adopt new regulations that would reshape the legal marijuana industry to include a home delivery aspect, but that decision could give way to a legal challenge in short order.


Long Search For OCPF Chief Likely to Spill Into 2021

The restrictions on the public from entering the State House and the uncertainty of Jim Lyons's position as head of the Massachusetts Republican Party means that Michael Sullivan will likely have to wait at least another couple of months to resume his retirement from the Office of Campaign and Political Finance.


“Testing Desert” on Cape Fueling Frustration

Cape Cod, like the rest of the Massachusetts, is experiencing a surge in COVID-19 infection rates, but unlike many other hard hit parts of the state, leaders in the summer coastal playground say the region is a dry spot for coronavirus testing, inhibiting their ability to fight the spread of the virus.


Uncaptioned image for story:State Looks to Put MCAS Back on Track in Pandemic

State Looks to Put MCAS Back on Track in Pandemic

State officials are exploring the possibility of administering some MCAS tests in a take-home format in the spring and are looking into options for exams scheduled for this winter, Elementary and Secondary Education Commissioner Jeff Riley said Tuesday.


October Lotto Sales Down, But Outlook Still Positive

Lottery sales were down $2.7 million in October compared to the same month last year, but sales and profit at the Lottery are both performing better through a third of the budget year than at this point last year.


State: Public School Enrollment Dropped By 37,000

[Coverage Developing] Public school enrollment in Massachusetts tumbled by 4 percent from October 2019 to October 2020, a decline that far exceeds the usual annual churn, according to figures presented to the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education Tuesday.


Pro Teams Apply Full Court Press on Sports Betting

In the wake of another sports betting proposal that came up short in the Senate, all five major league professional sports teams in Massachusetts, gaming companies, and a powerful labor union last week upped the pressure on the Legislature to legalize sports betting before the end of the year.


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