A tome’s worth of pages will have turned before Massachusetts and its West in particular, truly moves on from the tragedy of the Holyoke Soldiers’ Home. Lawsuits, bill-signings and administrative reshufflings have marked transitions thus far as openings will in the future. Still, the groundbreaking
It is all but certain that the annual spending plan will be the most significant piece of legislation of the 193rd General Court of Massachusetts. When compared to Democratic trifectas in that took office in some Midwest states, that record is, at best, modest.
The Massachusetts state budget, which both legislative chambers on Beacon Hill passed Monday, was late. It passed 31 days after the last budget expired on June 30. A 10-day period for Governor Maura Healey has begun when she will review the document and issue any vetoes.
In what came as something of a surprise to some, Governor Maura Healey included $12.5 million for Western Mass rail work in her Fiscal Year 2024 budget. While not necessary for East-West rail between Boston and the 413, the money for work in Palmer and Pittsfield was a positive sign. Then the legislature began its budget process.
During a visit to the region earlier this year, Healey announced she would appoint a director of rural affairs within her executive office for economic development. On Monday, she named Spencer Senator Anne Gobi, whose sprawling district still includes a sliver of Hampshire County, to the position.
Last Monday, a bloodless revolution in the Massachusetts Democratic party saw the incumbent chair replaced with the new governor’s pick to lead the party. A few months before, an acrimonious election on the GOP’s side also saw turnover but the process was anything but peaceful.
This week Governor Maura Healey’s office announced some staffing decisions of salience to the 413. On Thursday, Healey and Lieutenant Governor Kim Driscoll announced that Kristen Elechko, recently of Senator Ed Markey’s office, would lead her office in Western Mass.
In a 5-2 ruling, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court reinstated criminal charges arising from the COVID-19 outbreak that killed 76 veterans at the Holyoke Soldiers’ Home. Former Superintendent Bennett Walsh and former medical director David Clinton were the only officials to face such charges. Hampden County Superior Court Judge Edward McDonough, Jr. dismissed the indictment in 2021 prompting the appeal.
Another state agency has become embroiled in controversy and ostensibly the cause is an appointment of former Governor Charlie Baker. It is a reminder that the commonwealth must reckon with the true legacy of Baker to exemplify the problem. David D’Arcangelo, the head of the Massachusetts Commission for the Blind, is at the latest Baker appointee.
State money allocated to Springfield via Chapter 90 is nothing new to the City Council. Every year, the body formally accepts the disbursement. In recent years, city officials have paired it with bonding to maximize road repairs. The annual allocation has also been flat.