Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Wenham Road Work Supported By Senate Budget Amendment

ADOPTED: Route 1A is a state road that travels through Wenham where town officials and residents have been active in undertaking plans to improve the road for bike lanes, a smoother flow of traffic and safety improvements.

Today, the Senate voted to approve my budget amendment to appropriate some funding to aid in those improvements. Wenham has been engaging with MassDOT, the state's transportation agency, to coordinate the projects. The town will pay a portion of the costs with the larger share coming from both federal and state sources.


My Senate Budget Amendment And Per Pupil Minimum Aid

The Senate Ways and Means Committee has proposed a $30 per pupil minimum aid - today, I offered an amendment to raise that to $100 per student.

Each student deserves the strongest possible learning environment and every school district struggles to provide one. Our support for education, in this way, would be, I believe, both fair and equitable. Per pupil minimum aid is an important factor in the state's school funding formula.


Plum Island and West Newbury Approved for Senate Funding

ADOPTED: My amendment to provide for some expenses for a handicap access ramp for West Newbury AND to help defray costs for public facility improvements for Plum Island was adopted by the Senate.

The Senate voted to support my amendment to provide #Gloucester and #Boxford with turnout gear for their firefighters. These public safety professionals need special jackets, pants, gloves, boots, and hoods - they are expensive and absolutely necessary.


Senate Passes Local Infrastructure Funding Bill

Legislation provides $200M to support municipal road repairs 

BOSTON – Today, the Massachusetts Senate passed the so-called “Chapter 90” bond bill to fund local road and bridge repairs, and to continue the legislature’s ongoing commitment to invest in local communities. The bill will provide $200 million in Fiscal Year 2020 for municipal infrastructure improvements across the Commonwealth.

"Chapter 90 funds help keep the Commonwealth moving by providing direct assistance to our cities and towns for essential repairs and roadway projects,” said Senate President Karen E. Spilka (D-Ashland).

“This bond authorization is a major step toward placing our communities’ roads on a path toward good repair,” said Senator Joseph A. Boncore (D-Winthrop), Senate Chair of the Joint Committee on Transportation.  “After a seemingly interminable winter, a severe toll has been taken on our roadways and with the construction season already underway, this funding is essential so that municipalities may begin work now.”

“As a former selectman, I know all too well how critical this funding is to support local infrastructure repairs,” said Senator Michael O. Moore (D-Millbury), who serves as Chair of the Senate Committee on Bonding, Capital Expenditures and State Assets.  “The improvements made possible by this funding will strengthen transportation opportunities and help ensure that all members of the community have safe, accessible opportunities to move about.”

“This funding is crucial for communities across the state; construction season has begun and cities and towns need to address their current transportation needs and projects,” said Senate Minority Leader Bruce Tarr (R- Gloucester).  “Maintaining the safety and repair of local roads and bridges is a priority for the Senate and it provides an economic boost to the Commonwealth.”

Chapter 90 funds are allocated using a longstanding formula based on community road miles, population and employment.  The bill will now move to the House of Representatives for enactment before returning to the Senate for final approval and then sent to the Governor for their signature.   

To continue tracking the bill, H.69, visit the legislature’s website,


Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Senate Votes to Provide $200 Million For Local Roads

The Senate has voted to provide $200 million in Chapter 90 funding for community road and bridge projects across the state. Maintaining the safety and repair of local roads is a priority for the Senate and it provides an economic boost to the Commonwealth.


Celebrating Selectman Susan Beckmann

Last night I had the opportunity to express my appreciation for Selectman Susan Beckmann as she concluded her tenure on the Manchester-by-the-Sea Board of Selectman.

Not only did Susan serve on the board she had also been Chairman. Over the years she was also a member of the Manchester Essex Regional School Committee for 9 years, serving 6 as Chairman. She has been co-chair of the Master Plan Committee.

Representative Brad Hill and I presented her with citations recognizing her for her dedication and service to the people of Manchester-by-the-Sea.