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Michelle Wu is, by conventional standards, an unlikely figure to be challenging a sitting Boston mayor (though incumbent Mayor Marty Walsh has yet to declare his candidacy, he is widely expected to seek a third term next year). She is shy by temperament, and when she entered Harvard as an undergraduate in 2004, politics was so removed from Wu’s upb…
 
Massachusetts voters will be asked in November whether to update the Right to Repair law -- but they may have a hard time wading through the complexities of a ballot question when supporters and opponents cannot even agree on the basics of what it will do.Tommy Hickey, director of the Right to Repair Coalition, and Conor Yunits, a spokesman for No …
 
I took a Red Line train last week that was crowded according to the MBTA’s COVID-19 crowding standards, but the consensus on this week’s Codcast was that I didn’t need to worry.Jim Aloisi, the former secretary of transportation and TransitMatters board member, called my story on the crowded train ride a mild over-reaction “Your article might have g…
 
With less than two weeks until school starts, parents from Somerville and Newton say they have yet to get any details on what classes will look like for their children and whether remote learning will be better than it was when schools suddenly shut down last spring amid COVID-19.“Families cannot live in a state of uncertainty,” said Keri Rodrigues…
 
The federal government allows states to recoup Medicaid costs after the deaths of patients who use the program. Estate recovery allows homes to be seized and sold to pay off expended Medicaid dollars, a move advocates decry as penalizing low-income families, and making Medicaid into a loan program.Some states take the federal rules a step further. …
 
6/7/20-- Rep. Russell Holmes and Segun Idowu, the Executive Director of the Black Economic Council of Massachusetts, discuss the impact of George Floyd's death and racial justice reform. Holmes is a sponsor of several bills, including one that would allow for decertification of officers for misconduct. Idowu addresses misconceptions about recent pr…
 
With a portion of the state’s casino revenues, the Massachusetts Cultural Council is testing whether arts and culture can be prescribed just like medicine.The organization is running three pilot projects where health providers, counselors, and social workers prescribe cultural activities for those with whom they work. The goal is to see whether goi…
 
SOME OF THE STATE’S leading transit advocates are calling for extending the life of the existing MBTA Fiscal and Management Control Board for six months to a year and making buses free across the state.On the TransitMatters Codcast hosted by CommonWealth magazine, Jim Aloisi, the former transportation secretary and TransitMatters board member; Josh…
 
There’s a back to the future feel to some of the changes taking place in US health care, and Atrius Health, which provides care to some 740,000 patients, is a leading player in that effort in Massachusetts. After years of soaring health care costs, there is growing interest in moving away from the fee-for-service model that has long dominated care,…
 
There is a struggle going on for the soul of the Massachusetts Republican Party between Trump loyalists who control the party apparatus and a more moderate brand of Republicanism espoused by Gov. Charlie Baker.The state party is headed by Jim Lyons, a social and economic conservative who said in a recent email to state Republicans that President Tr…
 
The Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce’s “City to City” program sets out to take Boston civic and business leaders to other cities so they can expand their thinking on challenges at home by learning about policies and practices elsewhere. Walsh, who was part of the program’s trip earlier this month to Los Angeles, has clearly taken that mission to …
 
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