Voices

Turning around New Bedford

Turning around New Bedford

Mayor Jon Mitchell’s game plan for his Gateway City

Photographs by Frank Curran JON MITCHELL WALKS a fine line as the mayor of New Bedford. On the one hand, he is the self-professed squeaky wheel, constantly pressing state and federal officials for more money, whether it’s for dredging the harbor, building a rail link to Boston, or replacing the ancient bridge that connects New(...)

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Youth movement

Youth movement

At 22, Solomon Goldstein-Rose is poised to claim a House seat

Photograph by Frank Curran THE SCENE: The Amherst town cemetery, sitting on a stone wall circling an old burial plot, not far from Emily Dickinson’s grave. Solomon Goldstein-Rose, who won the Democratic primary for an open Amherst-based House seat and faces no opposition in November, suggested the graveyard over a busy bagel shop because his(...)

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Charter showdown

Charter showdown

A charter school leader and teachers union president debate the ballot question

IN NOVEMBER, MASSACHUSETTS voters will have their say on a ballot question that would allow up to 12 new or expanded charter schools each year above the existing state cap on the independently-run, but publicly-funded, schools. The issue has inflamed passions on both sides. We asked two prominent Boston education leaders, Jon Clark, co-director of(...)

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The missing piece of education reform

The missing piece of education reform

Leadership by superintendents and principals is key

TWENTY-FIVE YEARS ago a broad coalition of legislators, business people, education experts, and state officials put together and passed a wide-reaching education reform law. That law reflects a set of shared beliefs—basically, that a combination of increased funding, state testing tied to graduation requirements, new state curriculum frameworks, charter schools, and increased authority for superintendents(...)

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Baker’s big health care move

Baker’s big health care move

Revamping MassHealth offers great potential — and great risks

FOR THE THIRD time since 1996, the Massachusetts Medicaid program, called MassHealth, is preparing for transformation. After submitting a final proposal in July, state officials are anxiously awaiting a decision on the plan from the US Centers for Medicaid & Medicare Services. The goals are to: first, transform how medical services are delivered to many(...)

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A nation divided

A nation divided

Alan Wolfe, who told us two decades ago we were "One Nation, After All," isn’t so sure anymore

ALAN WOLFE HAS had a long interest in American democracy and in Americans’ attitudes toward it and toward issues related to religion and morality. But the longtime sociology professor at Boston College is a restless inquirer, having also authored books on topics as diverse as gambling, school choice, political evil, and, most recently, the Jewish(...)

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To serve and elect

To serve and elect

Emily Cherniack wants to get more people with military or civilian service backgrounds into public office

Photograph by Frank Curran   The organization you founded, New Politics, is committed to finding and helping elect candidates for office who have backgrounds in the military or civilian service organizations such as AmeriCorps or the Peace Corps. Why is it important to have people with those backgrounds in public office? We’re about people who(...)

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The art of the non-deal deal

The art of the non-deal deal

Health care ballot showdown averted, but pricing issue remains

ON MAY 31, Gov. Charlie Baker signed a new law to avert a proposed 2016 state ballot initiative that would have redistributed as much as $450 million annually from Partners HealthCare hospitals to most of the state’s other hospitals by establishing stringent limits on hospital price variation. The new law, “Chapter 115, An act relative to(...)

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Fusion: The next big thing

Fusion: The next big thing

A Q&A with a remarkably optimistic Dennis Whyte from MIT

GREATER BOSTON IS on a roll, propelled by innovation. The US Chamber of Commerce recently named the region number one in the nation for “fostering entrepreneurial growth and innovation.” Our universities, medical institutions, research labs, and venture capitalists have combined to develop enterprises on the spearhead of biotech and high technology, producing whole industries that(...)

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The income-growth challenge in Gateway Cities

Wage stagnation has hit mid-sized cities particularly hard.

IT’S POSSIBLE FOR an economy to grow in ways that expand opportunity and promote broadly shared prosperity. We know that’s possible because it’s exactly what happened in the United States in the three decades after World War II. Each year, the economy grew at a strong clip and incomes grew for low, middle, and high-income(...)

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