SPRINGFIELD—Tucked between passage of the House’s budget and the Senate’s introduction of its version was a briefing on Beacon Hill happenings from the legislative delegation for the commonwealth’s third city. Last Tuesday, Springfield’s five reps, one senator and staff for the other, took turns describing their priorities.
With Massachusetts Senate President Karen Spilka’s release of committee assignments, the upper house on Beacon Hill can now get down to legislating. Lawmaking will soon begin in earnest with full Democratic control of Beacon Hill for the first time in nearly a decade.
Springfield City Council President and Ward 5 Councilor Marcus Williams will resign both positions, thus triggering a new succession process. Just over a year ago, Williams oversaw the filling of now-State Senator Adam Gomez’s Council seat.
In the end, for Springfield, 2021 may have come to define the city’s limits. Some of those limits were long overdue. Courts ruled twice on the limits of Mayor Domenic Sarno’s power and the coronavirus revealed the limits of his influence. But those limits also
With the much-delayed Census figures in hand, the Massachusetts legislature set to drawing new maps for the state House and Senate. On Tuesday, the Joint Committee on Redistricting released its drafts. The new lines are not wholly without controversy. The Committee will hear from the public Friday even as a constitutional deadline begins to bear down. In the 413, the process may have delivered as well as it could.
Springfield bucked a local trend as its population grew a clip faster than much of the region. The Census Bureau released community-level data Thursday confirming the commonwealth’s growth principally happened in its east. Yet, the information still included some surprises. These both benefited and hurt Bay State localities reflecting both longer-term trends and how the coronavirus possibly warped results.
The Democratic field for governor expanded again Wednesday morning as sitting Boston Senator Sonia Chang-Diaz leapt into the fray. A stalwart of the State Senate’s left since her upset victory over an incumbent in 2008, Chang-Diaz brings the race to three major contenders. Ever looming is Attorney General Maura Healey, but the growth of the field could also begin to smoke a decision out of her.
SPRINGFIELD—The wards were the highlight of Monday’s City Council virtual meeting. Early on, the Council considered a crush of utility petitions that received an unusual amount of scrutiny. Oddly most of these items happened to fall within Ward 2. Its councilor, Michael Fenton, raised the
SPRINGFIELD—City Councilors, state legislators, community activists and a United States Senator took a victory lap at City Hall after the state cut off the air for the ever-lingering biomass project. On Friday, the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection pulled the air quality permit Palmer Renewable