Monday, January 5, 2015

A Busy Week of Events

While there is still much to do before the closure of the 188th Legislative Session, I wanted to provide some important dates and times of upcoming events later this week. Tomorrow is the final day of session, with both the House and Senate conducting informal sessions today and tomorrow to finalize many of the remaining bills still in flux.

The Governor has until Wednesday night to sign bills into law or veto them; however, if he does not act on a particular bill, it is known as a pocket veto, and it will have to be re-filed for a chance to become law in the next legislative session.

Also on Wednesday, members of the House of Representatives and members of the Senate will be sworn into office at 11:00AM, commencing the 189th Legislative Session. The Senate Republican Caucus will be welcoming two new members, Senator-Elect deMacedo and Senator-Elect Fattman.

Later in the day Governor Patrick will be leaving the State House for the last time as Governor. He will walk through the State House, exit out of the ceremonial doors in the front of the building, cross the street and walk into Boston Common, symbolically rejoining the Commonwealth as a private citizen. The tradition is now known as “The Lone Walk”, which first began in 1884 by then Governor Benjamin Butler.

On Thursday, at 10:30AM, there will be an entrance ceremony on the steps of the State House for Governor-Elect Charlie Baker, and then at noon he will take the oath of office becoming the Commonwealth’s 72nd Governor. The Senate will join the House of Representatives in the House Chamber at noon for a joint session for the inauguration of Charlie Baker and Karyn Polito as Governor and Lieutenant Governor. Members of the Governor’s Council will also be sworn in during the session.

To commemorate the day, there is an inaugural celebration at 8:00PM at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center, which is open to the public with the purchase of a ticket (please click here for more information regarding the inauguration celebration). The celebration will feature a variety of talented musical performers, passionate speeches, and a festive atmosphere.

Other important dates to remember include a January 16th deadline for members to timely file bills for the 2015-2016 legislative session. A timely filed bill is a bill that is guaranteed to receive a public hearing during the upcoming session. And then on January 21st, the state’s remaining Constitutional Officers will be sworn into office. They include Secretary of the Commonwealth William Galvin, Attorney General Maura Healey, Treasurer Deb Goldberg, and Auditor Suzanne Bump.