Matt Murphy

State House News Service

Stories by Matt Murphy

Insurers sound alarm on Senate health bill

Insurers sound alarm on Senate health bill

Warns of price hikes, say cost penalties not broad enough

InsuSTATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE SEVERAL LARGE HEALTH INSURERS are sounding the alarm on the eve of Senate debate on a health care bill that seeks to shrink the gap between rates paid to the most expensive hospitals and lower-paid providers, warning that without changes the bill would drive up costs for consumers. The insurers, including(...)

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House, Senate end bickering, sign budget deal

House, Senate end bickering, sign budget deal

Bill bans bump stocks, provides $3m for gang initiative

STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE DEVICES KNOWN AS BUMP STOCKS that were used in the Las Vegas shooting a month ago to turn ordinary rifles into automatic weapons would be banned in Massachusetts under a bill the Legislature sent to Gov. Charlie Baker’s desk on Thursday after weeks of bickering between the House and Senate. The(...)

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House bans ‘bump stock’ devices

House bans ‘bump stock’ devices

Anything that could increase discharge rate of firearms barred

STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE HOUSE LAWMAKERS on Wednesday moved rapidly, and some critics said rashly, to ban any device that could be used to increase the rate of discharge of a firearm. The bill’s passage came 10 days after a shooter in Las Vegas is believed to have used a “bump stock” device to rain(...)

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Income up, poverty and inequality down

Income up, poverty and inequality down

Positive news as state readies for tax and minimum wage debates

STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE WITH THE STATE moving toward major decisions over wages, income taxation and health care spending, new data published by the US Census Bureau Thursday shows Massachusetts to be a state with declining poverty and rising incomes that rank among the highest in the country. An estimated 65,474 fewer residents of Massachusetts(...)

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Pro-charter school group hit with record campaign finance fine

Pro-charter school group hit with record campaign finance fine

State says group served as pass-through to shield donor identities

STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE THE PROMINENT NEW YORK education group that financed the bulk of last year’s failed ballot campaign to expand charter schools in Massachusetts has agreed to pay the largest fine in state campaign finance history to resolve questions over whether it participated in a scheme to conceal the identities of well-heeled donors.(...)

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Ballot opponent to head legal pot commission

Ballot opponent to head legal pot commission

State treasurer taps former Bain executive as chair of regulatory board

STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE A RETIRED BUSINESS executive and former Bain and Company partner who voted against the referendum to legalize marijuana has been tapped by Treasurer Deborah Goldberg to chair the new Cannabis Control Commission and lead the state’s efforts to get a recreational pot industry off the ground by next summer. Steven Hoffman,(...)

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Baker pushes new drug dealing charges

Baker pushes new drug dealing charges

Backs tougher penalties on sales that lead to opioid overdose deaths

STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE A YEAR AFTER WORKING with the Legislature to try to stem the flow of opioids and improve addiction treatment options, Gov. Charlie Baker is targeting the peddlers of dangerous narcotics with a proposal to enhance penalties for dealing drugs that lead to overdose deaths. The governor, who sits on President Donald(...)

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Baker taps pot foe for cannabis control board

Baker taps pot foe for cannabis control board

Dem senator is second opponent governor put on regulatory panels

STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE SEN. JENNIFER FLANAGAN, a Leominster Democrat, has become the first of five members of the powerful new Cannabis Control Commission, tapped by Gov. Charlie Baker to help take on the responsibility of regulating the nascent recreational marijuana industry and licensing retail pot shops. Flanagan, who voted against the 2016 ballot question(...)

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Tsongas not seeking reelection

Tsongas not seeking reelection

Her exit will likely spur heavy competition for her seat

STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE US REP. NIKI TSONGAS, who has served in Congress since 2007, will not seek reelection in 2018. Tsongas, who is the widow of the late Sen. Paul Tsongas, won a special election when UMass President Marty Meehan resigned his seat to become the chancellor of UMass Lowell. The Lowell Democrat representing(...)

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Healey outlines criminal justice vision

Healey outlines criminal justice vision

Backs what Baker proposed, but wants to take more holistic approach

STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE ATTORNEY GENERAL MAURA HEALEY sent a letter to two key lawmakers this week outlining her vision for criminal justice reform, including an overhaul of bail and sentencing practices that could serve as a guidepost for a debate that’s expected to heat up this fall. Democratic leaders in the House and Senate(...)

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