Daily Dose of Bass & Han - Tuesday, July 21, 2020
Updated: Jul 22
By Adam Bass and Jessy Han
GOOD MORNING, MASSACHUSETTS!
Welcome to your Daily Dose of Bass & Han on this beautiful Tuesday. As Politico Massachusetts Playbook writer Stephanie Murray takes her much-deserved break, we will provide your daily fix of Bay State news for the remainder of the week. (This publication is not authorized by or affiliated with Politico.)
— US Secretary of the Interior David L. Bernhardt joins fishing and lobster industry representatives in Boston to discuss fishing and offshore wind. (State House News Service)
— Fourth congressional district candidate Becky Grossman’s first TV ad begins airing in the Providence media market. The 30-second spot, entitled “Kindergarten,” reveals Grossman’s struggle to speak with her son Jack about staying safe in the event of a school shooting. The ad is part of a $250,000 advertising campaign the Grossman campaign is launching this week. The ad.
— The Black & Latino Caucus plans to ask Governor Charlie Baker if he would veto the police reform bill if it included expungement, juvenile justice, and undocumented drivers licenses. (Mike Deehan, WGBH News)
— The Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association Board of Directors hears recommendations from their COVID-19 Task Force in the first meeting of the 2020-21 school year to determine how fall sports can return during a global pandemic. (Rich Garven, Telegram & Gazette)
— The deadline to submit questions for the NBC10 Boston/Telemundo Boston/NECN debate between Senator Ed Markey and Representative Joe Kennedy III scheduled for this Sunday is at 5 PM. Email questions to firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com with "Debate" in the subject line.
— Senator Ed Markey, Representative Joe Kennedy III, and 4th congressional district candidates Ben Sigel and Dr. Natalia Linos were among those spotted at the “Strike for Black Lives” rally in front of the Massachusetts State House on Monday morning, organized by the Service Employees International Union.
— The Massachusetts Nurses Association endorsed 4th congressional district candidate Jesse Mermell Tuesday morning.
— Newton City Councilor Alicia Bowman announced her support for Massachusetts 4th congressional candidate and city council colleague Jake Auchincloss. In her endorsement, Bowman states, “Jake has been a leader in times of crisis & uncertainty. The next Congress will have both, and I’m voting for Jake because he’s the candidate I trust most to rise to the occasion.”
— NARAL Pro-Choice Massachusetts PAC and the Planned Parenthood Advocacy Fund of Massachusetts announced their joint endorsement of 84 state legislators, recognizing their support of the ROE Act, which would expand abortion access in the Commonwealth. The list.
— The police reform bill released by a Massachusetts House committee drew criticism from activists Monday after it was discovered marijuana tax revenue would be redirected to a Police Training Fund. Representative Aaron Michlewitz clarified on Twitter, saying, “the Cannabis law that went into effect in 2018 always included funding for behavioral health, administrative costs for the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission, and police training.”
— A new super PAC by the name of "Experienced Leadership Matters" raised $89,100 in the second quarter, with $30,000 from Hugh Auchincloss, father of 4th congressional district candidate Jake Auchincloss and Dr. Anthony Fauci's top deputy. Other donors include Auchincloss's mother Laurie Glimcher, Robert Kraft, and Jonathan Kraft. The PAC is yet to disburse funds on behalf of any candidate but the proximity to the Auchincloss family may indicate how the funds will be spent. (Stephanie Murray, Politico)
Do you have a tip, comment, suggestion, or birthday that deserves to be recognized? If so, direct message them to @AdamBassWCCS or @hjessy_ on Twitter!
MAZEL! Sarah Elizabeth Neville and husband Chelsea School Committee Member Roberto A. Jimenez Rivera welcomed a baby boy, Roberto Daniel, shortly after midnight on Monday. Pic tweeted by the adorable newborn’s mother.
COVID IN THE COMMONWEALTH
— “Massachusetts reports 1 new confirmed coronavirus death, 174 new cases,” by Tanner Stening, MassLive.com: “Massachusetts health officials reported one new confirmed coronavirus death on Monday as well as one probable COVID-19 death, bringing the death count up to 8,214. Officials also confirmed another 174 confirmed cases of the virus as well as 88 probable cases, bringing the statewide total to at least 107,056.”
— "Backlog for COVID-19 tests imperils the push to contain infections," by Kay Lazar and Dasia Moore, The Boston Globe: "Five months into the coronavirus pandemic, people in Massachusetts and across the country are often waiting up to a week or more to learn the results of their COVID-19 tests, seriously endangering efforts to contain and control future infections.
The delays are largely being driven by a backlog at some of the nation’s largest laboratories, which process many of the tests from Massachusetts community health centers and businesses. The labs are struggling to keep up with demand caused by surging coronavirus cases in Southern and Western states."
— “Coronavirus reaches remote Massachusetts island,” The Associated Press: The coronavirus pandemic has reached the smallest and one of the most isolated towns in Massachusetts. A seasonal resident of Cuttyhunk Island, one of several small islands that make up the town of Gosnold, tested positive for COVID-19 last week…”
— “At M Street Beach in Boston, it’s crowds and sun — and few masks and little social distancing,” by John Hillard and Lucas Phillips, The Boston Globe: “At the M Street Beach early Sunday afternoon, among the throngs seeking to escape the summer heat heat there none could be seen wearing masks, despite warnings that the coronavirus can easily spread among such a large crowd.
— HOLYOKE HOME SUPERINTENDENT FIGHTS BACK: “Attorney for ousted Holyoke Soldiers’ Home Superintendent Bennett Walsh announces press conference,” by Stephanie Barry, MassLive.com: “Onetime Hampden District Attorney William Bennett will hold a press conference Thursday on behalf of his nephew, ousted Holyoke Soldiers’ Home Superintendent Bennett Walsh.”
AROUND CHARLIE’S CORNER
— DRINK UP, BUT NOT OUTSIDE: “Baker Signs Mosquito Control, Cocktails To-Go Bills,” by Katie Lannan, State House News Service: “The mosquito legislation (S 2757) was based on a bill Baker field in April and gives the State Reclamation and Mosquito Control Board new powers to fight mosquito-borne illnesses like West Nile Virus and Eastern equine encephalitis when the Department of Public Health determines there is an elevated risk. It also creates a task force to recommend reforms aimed at creating a "twenty-first century" approach to mosquito control. Public health officials expect an active EEE season this year, after six deaths from the virus in 2019.
The new to-go cocktails law (S 2812) is aimed at helping restaurants generate additional revenue while their operations are restricted amid the COVID-19 crisis. It follows an April law that allowed restaurants to sell beer and wine alongside takeout and delivery, and restaurants will now be able to sell limited quantities of beer, wine and mixed drinks for off-premises consumption through February 2021 or until the COVID-19 state of emergency is lifted, whichever comes later.”
— “Massachusetts House police reform bill takes different approach to qualified immunity than Senate policing bill,” by Steph Solis, MassLive.com: “The bill bans chokeholds, tear gas and “no-knock” warrants with certain exceptions, but it also has some key differences from the Senate version. One of the key differences is that the House will not limit when qualified immunity applies unless the officer involved has been decertified by the proposed police standards and training commission. The Senate version suggested a narrower interpretation of when qualified immunity applies to all public employees covered by the legal doctrine.”
ON MAURA’S MIND
— “Changes To ACA Anti-Discrimination Rule Challenged by Healey, AGs,” by Katie Lannan, State House News Service: “A new federal rule will allow health care providers and insurers to discriminate against certain vulnerable and protected populations, Attorney General Maura Healey and 22 of her counterparts allege in a lawsuit they filed against the Trump administration Monday.”
— “In major shift, Mass. AG’s office would get new role in police deadly force investigations under House reform bill,” by John R. Ellement, The Boston Globe: “In a major policy shift backed by House leaders, Attorney General Maura Healey’s office would gain a direct role in investigating deadly force cases involving police, an authority now restricted to local district attorneys who often work with police they are tasked with investigating.”
— "Ed Markey On Push For More Federal COVID-19 Relief, Senate Race Against Kennedy And Trump's 'Criminally Negligent' Handling Of Pandemic," WGBH News: "With coronavirus cases and deaths rising across the South and West, calls are growing louder for another economic stimulus, as well as an extension of the unemployment benefits that expire this month, as Congress returns from recess. WGBH Morning Edition host Joe Mathieu spoke with Sen. Ed Markey about his plans to push for more assistance, as well as the ongoing Senate race between him and Rep. Joe Kennedy III."
— “Rep. Ayanna Pressley on Channeling the Protest Movement into Real Change,” by Jamil Smith, Rolling Stone: The last of Ayanna Pressley’s hair fell out in the middle of December, on the day before the Massachusetts representative and the rest of the House voted on President Trump’s articles of impeachment. Losing her crown of Senegalese twists — the signature hairstyle that Pressley, 46, had been wearing since winning the 7th Congressional District seat two years ago — was traumatic for several reasons. It was also the anniversary of her mother’s death. ‘I was missing her. I was mourning my hair. I was mourning the state of our democracy,’ Pressley said when she revealed her alopecia diagnosis in January.
The world has only become more tragic and tumultuous since then, but Pressley, who is currently running unopposed for re-election in November, has not slowed down. She has emerged boldly to become more than an aesthetic icon for both black women and the new progressive wave of Democratic political power.”
THE STATE OF EDUCATION
— RELIEF FOR STUDENTS, BAD NEWS FOR SOME EMPLOYEES: “UMass Pairs Tuition Freeze With Layoffs And Spending Cuts,” by Chris Lisinski, State House News Service: “The University of Massachusetts system, the third-largest employer in the state, will cut about 6% of its full-time equivalent workforce and furlough thousands as part of its efforts to close a $264 million budget gap ripped open by the COVID-19 pandemic.”
— "Worcester parents air concerns in first public meeting ahead of schools reopening; preliminary plans presented," by Tanner Stening, MassLive.com: "Worcester parents on Monday shared their concerns about their kids going back to school in the fall, as city and school administrators shared preliminary plans for resuming instruction in the public school system amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The Zoom meeting, which saw more than 1,000 Worcester residents in attendance, went on for more than four hours. Worcester Mayor Joseph Petty and Worcester Superintendent Maureen Binienda addressed worried parents on the call, many of whom expressed concern that measures being considered by officials don’t go far enough to protect students from coronavirus."
THE TERRIBLE T
— PULL OUT THOSE CHARLIECARDS: “MBTA: Time's Up For Free Rides,” by Chris Lisinski, State House News Service: “Passengers had been able to avoid paying on buses and trolleys for the three-plus months that they were only allowed to enter through the back doors — an attempt to mitigate COVID risks by limiting interactions between drivers and riders — but T officials made clear in a press release that when the system returns to normal boarding procedures this week, fares are once again due.”
— “Sharp split on need for new transpo revenues,” by Shira Schoenberg, CommonWealth Magazine: “With 17 percent unemployment, a recession, and a global pandemic, does Massachusetts need to be raising more money right now to fix the state’s ailing transportation system?”
WHAT WE’RE READING
— NH PARENTS SAY STUDENTS SUPPORT RETURN TO SCHOOL BUT DOUBTS REMAIN: “Survey: Few expect students will social distance in school,” by Holly Ramer, The Associated Press: “About 8 in 10 parents surveyed said their children were eager to return to the classroom, though parents were split on whether that should happen. Asked to rank their preferences, about half said their top choice would be onsite instruction. Depending on their children’s grade levels, between 12 and 15% of parents said they’d prefer remote learning, while 15-21% favored a mix. Among teachers, 38% listed onsite instruction as their top choice, with 27% picking remote learning and 26% favoring a hybrid model.”
— GREENHEAD GRENADES?: “Greenhead flies: The bug that just won’t die,” by Billy Baker, The Boston Globe: “One: Never go near a salt marsh on a sunny day in July. And two: Never trust a grown man who still goes by a nickname that ends in “y.” Yet there I was, lured onto the battlefield by a 56-year-old New Jersey man named Scotty Macom who had been leaving mysterious voicemails on my phone at the Globe, promising something I had long sought, something that seemed impossible. Scotty Macom said he had the cure for greenhead flies.”
— ATTENTION, CHEESEHEADS!: “Cheese supply company buys Northampton’s World War II Club, plans classroom in bar area,” by Jim Kinney, MassLive.com: “The new owners of the World War II Club — once a come-as-you are nightspot known as The Deuce — plans to turn what had been the club’s front bar area into a classroom for as many as 50 aspiring cheesemakers at a time.”
— “'A Clear Example Of How To Behave': Deval Patrick Remembers John Lewis”, by Governor Deval Patrick, WBUR: “That’s the kind of impact John Lewis had on people, on me. A huge historical contribution and reputation for moral clarity from a diminutive and humble man. It’s hard to think of another American who did more to challenge America to face down her demons, to be her best self, and to respect the dignity in every living soul.”
— “The plan to reopen Mass. schools compromises too much and provides too little,” by Massachusetts School Committee Members, The Boston Globe: “As educators, we want to be back in school. We miss the connections we make with our students, the laughs we share, and the learning we do together. We recognize as well how much students need face-to-face interaction and social-emotional supports that can be provided only in school buildings. However, our first and most critical duty is to be advocates for the safety of the children in our care, and in that role — and in our roles as elected school committee members — we question the wisdom of the recent state guidance calling for a full school reopening. It compromises too much, and provides too little, to ensure the safety of students.”
— “Listen to the science and reopen schools,” by professors at the Harvard School of Public Health, The Boston Globe: “Reopening schools should not be an us-versus-them argument. It’s not a Democratic vs. Republican argument. It’s about our children and about the evidence. We should be following the science that says in-person schooling for our kids is too valuable to give up and that the risks of school-based transmission appear to be low. We should be investing in adequate testing and tracing resources, making our physical school environments safer, and encouraging a practical balance of social distancing in the classroom with learning and the reality of children’s lives.”
— “While tackling police reform, don’t ignore crucial bills on immigrant rights,” by Tiffany Joseph, CommonWealth Magazine: “If state legislators are serious about creating racial equity in the Commonwealth, they must pass police reform and the Safe Communities and Work and Family Mobility bills. Concerned residents should call and encourage their representatives to make these policies the law of the land. Doing so will make Massachusetts safer and healthier and demonstrate that black, Latinx, and immigrant lives matter.”
— “Xander Bogaerts, Boston Red Sox SS, ‘fine’ after tweaking hamstring, likely to play exhibition games vs. Blue Jays,” by Chris Cotillo, MassLive.com: “Red Sox shortstop Xander Bogaerts isn’t expected to miss any time after tweaking his hamstring during an intrasquad scrimmage on Sunday night, manager Ron Roenicke said Monday.”
— “Zero positive results in latest round of NBA coronavirus tests,” by John Karalis, MassLive.com: “The latest round of COVID-19 tests from inside the NBA’s Walt Disney World bubble has come back completely clean, the league and the National Basketball Players Association announced on Monday. ‘Of the 346 players tested for COVID-19 on the NBA campus since test results were last announced on July 13, zero have returned confirmed positive tests,’ they said in a joint statement.”
— CAM NEWTON THE VEGAN?: “Cam Newton Shows He’s ‘Vegan Strong’ In New Campaign For PETA,” CBS Boston: “After years of hearing about Tom Brady’s unique diet, Patriots fans are now getting a serving of what Cam Newton has on his dinner table. Newton, however, isn’t selling his methods of eating, and is instead discussing the benefits of a vegan diet.”
Did any Boston sports teams play yesterday? No, although the New England Revolution will face off against Toronto FC this morning at 9 AM and the Boston Red Sox will face the Toronto Blue Jays in spring training at 7:30 PM this evening.