Thursday, January 23, 2020

Massachusetts Veterans Services Officers

Our state has often been acknowledged for having the very best array of benefits for our veterans. Yesterday many of our amazing Veterans Services Officers from across the state came to the State House to meet with legislators, recognize Representative Kevin Honan as 'Legislator of The Year', and share information about how we can all do more for those who served our nation.

I thank the Massachusetts Veterans Services Officers and all of our veterans for their service.

With Louis Cimaglia, Director of Veterans’ Services Wilmington and Karen Tyler Veterans Services Director for Eastern Essex Department of Veterans' Services.


Wednesday, January 22, 2020


Today Governor Baker released his budget proposal for the Fiscal Year 2021, House 2. You can read this document online at  Below is my statement about the budget.


Boston- Senate Minority Leader Bruce Tarr (R-Gloucester) released the following statement today regarding Governor Baker’s $44.6 billion budget proposal for the Fiscal Year 2021 State Budget:
“Governor Baker’s proposed budget identifies some of our state’s most important priorities and proposes major action steps to address them, including;
• Record high levels of investment in public education,
• Safety and infrastructure improvements for our transportation systems,
• Commitments to health and wellness efforts, including substance misuse treatment and prevention and health care cost containment,
• Contributions to the state’s Stabilization Fund that will bring it to record high levels,
• A commitment of resources to rigorously limit greenhouse gas pollution,
• Accelerating workforce training programs through increased access to trade and technical skills programing,
• Financial support for municipalities.

House 2 contains no broad-based tax increases and is the first budget in decades that incorporates a return to a 5% income tax rate that voters mandated in a November 2000 ballot initiative.

Importantly, the budget’s $303.5 million increase in ‘Chapter 70’ education spending funds the implementation of the first year of the recently adopted education reform bill, and sets the stage for sustainably implementing all it its provisions.

Members of the Senate Republicans Caucus are committed to working with the Baker-Polito Administration and our legislative colleagues in the House and Senate in the days ahead to build on Governor Baker’s House 2 proposal.”


Tuesday, January 21, 2020

State Of The Commonwealth

Governor Charlie Baker will speak later today to the citizens of the state and provide us with his "State of the State" address before a joint session of the Massachusetts House and Senate.  We will  assemble in the House Chamber in the State House. This event is open to the public free of fee or cost. If you can't come to the State House you can watch a live audio/video stream of the session on the state's website - Mass.Gov starting at 6:30 PM.


Monday, January 20, 2020

Remembering Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Martin Luther King confronted racism, oppression and intolerance with faith, character and perseverance. His struggle to advance civil rights was long and persistent, and yet even as his own life was at risk, Dr. King marched forward peacefully with a clear, powerful voice for positive change. His vision for change was immortalized in his "I have a dream" speech, delivered in front of the Lincoln Memorial at perhaps the height of racial tensions in March of 1963. He inspired millions of Americans, and others around the globe, to actively pursue equality and "a beautiful symphony of brotherhood".


Friday, January 17, 2020

Tobin Bridge/Chelsea Curves Rehabilitation Project

Construction Look-Ahead: January 18 – January 25, 2020

• ROUTE 1 NORTHBOUND: Approaching the Tobin Bridge from Boston, the workzone begins in the left lane. 2 of 3 travel lanes will be open during daytime hours (5 a.m.–10 p.m.) and at least 1 travel lane will be open during overnight hours (10 p.m.–5 a.m.).
• ROUTE 1 SOUTHBOUND: Approaching the Chelsea Curves from the North Shore, the workzone begins in the left lane before the Carter Street off-ramp. 2 of 3 travel lanes will be open during daytime hours (5 a.m.–10 p.m.) and at least 1 travel lane will be open during overnight hours (10 p.m.–5 a.m.).

• CARTER STREET: Carter Street under Route 1 will be closed on Saturday, 1/18 between 7 a.m.—7 p.m. and overnight between 7 p.m.–6 p.m. from Monday, 1/20 to Friday 1/24. Carter Street travel lanes will continue to divert around the active workzone under Route 1. Signs and police details will be used to guide travelers around the workzones.
• SPRUCE STREET: Spruce Street under Route 1 will be closed on Saturday, 1/25 between 7 a.m.—7 p.m. to create a safe work zone for necessary bridge work. Signed detours and police details will guide drivers and pedestrians safely around the work zone via Arlington Street.
• ARLINGTON STREET ON-RAMP: The Arlington Street on-ramp to Route 1 Southbound in Chelsea will be closed until Fall 2020 for necessary maintenance and rehabilitation. Drivers looking to take Route 1 Southbound in Chelsea may use the Carter Street on-ramp near Chelsea High School or the Everett Avenue on-ramp near Walnut Street.

WORK HOURS • Most work will occur in during daytime working hours (6 a.m.–2 p.m.) on weekdays. Some work will take place during afternoon (2 p.m.–7 p.m) and overnight hours (7 p.m.–6 a.m.) and on Saturdays (7 a.m.–7 p.m).


North Shore Superintendent's Roundtable

The North Shore Superintendent's Roundtable Legislative Breakfast this morning at Essex Agricultural and Technical High School brought many lawmakers and school professionals together to consider the numerous challenges facing our students’ mental health and wellness.

Even as our state leads the nation in many critical areas that measure academic success it is readily apparent that an increasing number of students are experiencing anxiety and other more severe psycho social and health issues that impact their learning and performance.

I am grateful that the superintendents, principals and school professionals in our area are so actively involved in working to better understand these issues and how lawmakers can help to identify resources to help them as they try to educate students and serve their families.


Thursday, January 16, 2020

Beagle Freedom Bill

The Boston Herald today published a strong piece from Michael Coyne, Dean of the Massachusetts School of Law at Andover and Diane M. Sullivan, Assistant Dean about a bill I filed to give animals used in medical experiments a life after the lab. Often referred to as the Beagle Bill, because beagles are used more than any other animal, my proposal will facilitate new relationships between research laboratories and non-profit animal rescue organizations. More than 60,000 dogs and nearly 20,000 cats are used for animal experimentation in the US each year.

Beagle Freedom Bill provides for adoption after lab research is over There’s an old expression: Be the person your mom and dog think you are. No one loves us as unconditionally as our moms or our pets. Our pets are family and the law has begun to recognize that to a…

There’s an old expression: Be the person your mom and dog think you are. No one loves us as unconditionally as our moms or our pets. Our pets are family and the law has begun to recognize that to a…