Katie Lannan

Reporter, State House News Service

Stories by Katie Lannan

Criminal justice reform at the State House

Criminal justice reform at the State House

Advocates make their case to lawmakers

STATE HOUSE NEWS FOR MONTHS, CRIMINAL justice advocates have said this legislative session is the time for Beacon Hill to tackle sweeping reforms aimed at reducing recidivism and incarceration rates, and Monday afternoon gave them the opportunity to make their case straight to lawmakers. The Judiciary Committee packed 96 bills dealing with criminal procedure onto(...)

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Feds crack down on Lawrence drug network

Feds crack down on Lawrence drug network

34 arrested, and at least 10 were in the country illegally

STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE THIRTY PEOPLE WERE ARRESTED Tuesday on gun, drug, and immigration charges in a sweep that brought down a Lawrence-based network that Acting US Attorney William Weinreb described as “one of the largest fentanyl trafficking organizations ever seen in Massachusetts.” Approximately 250 law enforcement officers were involved in the sweep, seizing several(...)

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Baker backs Paris climate accord

Baker backs Paris climate accord

Joins Vermont governor on letter to Trump administration

STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE Students had prepared Wednesday to attempt to persuade Gov. Charlie Baker to speak out in support of the Paris climate change agreement. Instead, they ended up visiting his office to thank him for his support. Representatives from youth climate groups had announced plans on Tuesday to visit the State House to(...)

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Senate budget pinned on shaky revenue projections

Senate budget pinned on shaky revenue projections

Weak collections so far spread concern, trigger search for new taxes

STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE SENATE WAYS AND MEANS Committee members on Tuesday unanimously approved a $40.3 billion spending plan for fiscal 2018 that they said recognizes the state does not have as much revenue as it needs to pay for desired programs and service. With approximately $400 million in new revenues proposed, the budget tries(...)

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Health panel finds some common ground

Health panel finds some common ground

Draft plan calls for rate floor for community hospitals

STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE AFTER SIX MONTHS OF SEEKING WAYS to address the variation in prices charged by Massachusetts medical providers, officials plan to recommend a host of solutions including a rate floor for lower-paid community hospitals, regulation of rate growth, and protections against out-of-network charges, according to a draft proposal. The recommendations are made(...)

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Opioid deaths continued to climb in 2016

Opioid deaths continued to climb in 2016

State report projects increase by as much as 24% over 2015

STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE THE NUMBER OF PEOPLE DYING from opioid overdoses in Massachusetts each year continues to climb, according to a new state report projecting an estimated increase of between 13 and 24 percent from 2015 to 2016. A total of 1,465 people died of unintentional opioid overdoses in 2016, with another 469 to(...)

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Panel considers hospital price floor

Panel considers hospital price floor

May also let state disallow contracts between insurers, health providers

STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE OFFICIALS EXAMINING VARIATIONS in prices charged by medical providers on Tuesday floated the idea of setting a minimum rate for hospitals at the bottom end of the price spectrum. The potential policy fix surfaced at a meeting of a 23-member commission that has until March 15 to release its report and(...)

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Two longtime reps skip speaker vote

Two longtime reps skip speaker vote

DeLeo antagonists Scaccia, Rogers ask not to be called

STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE TWO LONGTIME MEMBERS of the House, both with a prickly history with Speaker Robert DeLeo, opted out of voting for DeLeo’s reelection to the post, even asking that their names not be mentioned during the roll call vote. While present for parts of the ceremony, including the swearing-in, Reps. Angelo Scaccia of(...)

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Rosenberg: Legal age for marijuana use should be 25

Rosenberg: Legal age for marijuana use should be 25

"It's not going to be a popular proposal, I'm sure of that"

STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE SENATE PRESIDENT STANLEY ROSENBERG WANTS  his fellow lawmakers to consider raising the age for legal marijuana use to 25, a policy change he expects to be unpopular. Marijuana use, possession and home-growing become legal for adults aged 21 and over on Thursday after the passage of a ballot question in the(...)

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Activists fear criminal justice reform will be limited to probation, parole

Activists fear criminal justice reform will be limited to probation, parole

Worried legislation from Beacon Hill leaders will not address all aspects of the system.

STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE ENDING MANDATORY MINIMUM SENTENCES FOR drug offenses will be a top priority next year for criminal justice reform advocates, who said they are worried legislation from Beacon Hill leaders will not address all aspects of the system. The Jobs Not Jails coalition rallied Tuesday at a Bowdoin Street church, where SEIU Local(...)

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