Statehouse News Service

Baker, Gonzalez spar in first debate over who has vision to lead

Gov. Charlie Baker and his challenger Jay Gonzalez met in a televised debate for the first time Tuesday night, where the Republican incumbent focused on his accomplishments in his nearly four years in office and Gonzalez, a Democrat, cast himself as someone with vision to take the state beyond...

Wednesday, October 10, 2018, 9:22 AM

Retail pot still 'weeks away' but two Mass. companies get final licenses

Legal marijuana sales are "weeks away" in Massachusetts, the chairman of the Cannabis Control Commission said Thursday after regulators approved final business licenses for shops in Leicester and Northampton. The CCC on Thursday afternoon granted final business licenses for Cultivate...

Friday, October 5, 2018, 10:23 AM

Massachusetts nurse ballot question could cost $949M: Report

The total annual costs of a ballot question that would limit the number of patients assigned to one nurse would land between $676 million and $949 million, according to a new state analysis that cautioned those figures are likely on the conservative side. Less than five weeks before voters will...

Wednesday, October 3, 2018, 4:54 PM

MBTA upgrading bus-tracking technology

Within six weeks, all MBTA buses will be outfitted with new cellular/GPS vehicle trackers that T officials said will give bus riders better information about where their bus is and when they might expect it to arrive at their stop. MBTA General Manager Luis Ramirez said Monday that MBTA buses...

Tuesday, September 25, 2018, 2:36 PM

Hepatitis A outbreak reported by Massachusetts health officials

A public health alert about an outbreak of hepatitis A among the homeless and people addicted to drugs went out from the state to local health officials Monday after 65 cases of the virus were diagnosed, leading to one death so far. The Department of Pubic Health encouraged local health...

Monday, September 24, 2018, 2:09 PM

Recovery plan eyes gas service restoration before Thanksgiving

National Guardsmen delivering hotplates, teams of electricians, assessors, translators and plumbers, and 24,000 space heaters will arrive in the Merrimack Valley in coming days to support residents during a pipeline repair and gas restoration effort that officials said will be complete by Nov. 19...

Friday, September 21, 2018, 1:28 PM

Test lab approvals mark latest retail marijuana milestone

One of the largest roadblocks to launching the retail market for legal marijuana in Massachusetts was eliminated Thursday as the Cannabis Control Commission approved provisional licenses for two testing laboratories. Massachusetts officials had hoped to launch legal retail marijuana sales on July...

Friday, August 24, 2018, 9:50 AM

Mayor Walsh marks Boston's newest skyscraper at One Dalton

Rising from the Back Bay for more than three years, Boston's newest skyscraper is nearing completion and on Tuesday hosted the mayor and developers for a topping-off ceremony. Hundreds of construction workers filled a plaza at the foot of the building officially dubbed the "Four Seasons...

Tuesday, August 7, 2018, 4:53 PM

Cannabis Control Commission begins first review of marijuana test lab application

The Cannabis Control Commission is reviewing its first license application from an independent testing laboratory, a critical link of the supply chain without which non-medical marijuana cannot be sold, and the chairman said he hopes the commission can consider that application when it meets next...

Thursday, July 12, 2018, 4:07 PM

Mass. House votes to hold sales tax holiday Aug. 11-12

The Massachusetts House approved an amendment to an economic development bill Tuesday that would establish the weekend of Aug. 11 and 12 as a sales tax-free weekend. "The sales tax holiday is something for one weekend that is good for retailers, it's good for Main Street merchants, it...

Wednesday, July 11, 2018, 10:49 AM

Leicester company awarded first retail pot license, eyes sales in 'few weeks'

The president of the company that secured the state's first retail marijuana license Monday said he expects to be selling non-medical marijuana in Leicester in a matter of weeks. The Cannabis Control Commission voted unanimously Monday to issue a provisional license to Cultivate Holdings, Inc...

Monday, July 2, 2018, 4:09 PM

Baker signs $15 minimum wage law

Gov. Charlie Baker signed a new law Thursday that could affect virtually every resident of Massachusetts, a week after lawmakers settled months of negotiations over proposed ballot questions that could have had dramatic consequences for the state's finances and economy. Legislators scrambled...

Thursday, June 28, 2018, 2:34 PM

Mass. state troopers arrested, charged with theft of funds

Current and former State Police officials already under scrutiny internally for payroll discrepancies are now fully within the sights of federal prosecutors who on Wednesday announced charges against two troopers, one of whom is retired, and a former lieutenant. The three are suspected of...

Wednesday, June 27, 2018, 3:48 PM

Retail marijuana not happening July 1 because of laboratory snag

There will be no legal recreational marijuana sales in Massachusetts on July 1. And though regulators expect to approve business licenses next week, there can be no legal retail sales until an independent testing laboratory applies and is licensed by the Cannabis Control Commission. The CCC on...

Tuesday, June 26, 2018, 3:41 PM

First recreational marijuana license issued in Massachusetts

State regulators voted unanimously Thursday to grant the state's first recreational marijuana business license to a marijuana grower in Milford. The license approved by the Cannabis Control Commission (CCC) on Thursday will allow Sira Naturals to grow between 10,001 and 20,000 square feet of...

Thursday, June 21, 2018, 3:42 PM

Rail link between North and South stations could cost up to $21 billion

The cheapest version of a rail link between North and South station would run about $12.3 billion, and a more extensive version could cost about $21.5 billion, according to a draft study by the MBTA. The T's analysis, pursued with the consultant Arup, dwarfs the figures in a study publicized...

Wednesday, June 20, 2018, 9:23 AM

$10 parking fees part of MBTA plan that hopes to collect $8.5M from public

Drivers who park and ride from MBTA facilities during the work week will pay steeper prices at the more popular garages but could receive discounts at underused lots, under a policy adopted by the MBTA control board that will go into effect Aug. 1. Weekday prices will rise from $7 to $10 at three...

Tuesday, June 19, 2018, 9:25 AM

In reversal, Gov. Baker not sending flight crew to southern border

In a sudden reversal, Gov. Charlie Baker's administration on Monday canceled its plan to send Massachusetts National Guard members and equipment to the southwestern U.S. border in light of the federal government's "inhumane" practice of separating undocumented children from their...

Monday, June 18, 2018, 2:17 PM

Gov. Baker gets 'C' in environmental report card

A coalition of environmental groups, for the third year in a row, has awarded the Baker administration a passing but average grade for its environmental protection efforts, knocking officials for not moving the needle from year to year. Grades in the report card, issued by six groups, range from...

Wednesday, June 13, 2018, 9:44 AM

On eve of marijuana legalization, impaired driving panel just getting started

With legal marijuana sales expected to begin within a month, the commission that is supposed to make recommendations to prevent operating under the influence of marijuana and impaired driving is slated to meet for the first time Wednesday. The Special Commission on Operating Under the Influence...

Tuesday, June 12, 2018, 9:36 AM