The Back Story

About-face on marijuana

About-face on marijuana

Some towns voted for pot in fall, against in spring

THERE’S BEEN A LOT of pot talk lately on Beacon Hill, as the House and Senate battle back and forth over whether changes should be made (and which ones) to the law voters approved last fall legalizing recreational marijuana. But there has also been a lot of chatter at the local level, where communities concerned(...)

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Greenway is no secondhand coat

Greenway is no secondhand coat

‘We ought to be so much better than this’

RECENT NEWS THAT state and city officials are attempting to devise new funding mechanisms for the Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway Conservancy prompts a reflection on how the Conservancy came into being, and what the expectations were about how this urban gem would be funded and sustained over time. Let’s take a short trip down memory(...)

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Fear and loathing on Haverhill school vote

Fear and loathing on Haverhill school vote

Charter school at the center of charged debate

THE SILVER HILL Horace Mann Charter School in Haverhill is seeking a five-year extension of its charter, but the seemingly routine process has mushroomed into a high-stakes battle reminiscent of last fall’s statewide ballot fight over charter school expansion. Members of the Haverhill teachers union will vote next week on whether to allow the K-5(...)

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Tito Jackson’s address? It’s complicated

Tito Jackson’s address? It’s complicated

Boston mayoral candidate is both a Roxbury and Dorchester guy

TITO JACKSON, the Boston city councilor who is challenging Mayor Marty Walsh this fall, is not generally one to shrink from a tough question or dodge and weave around a topic. Which makes it all the more remarkable to see Jackson tiptoe his way through a seemingly simple inquiry: What neighborhood does he live in?(...)

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Mass. teachers union snubs National Teacher of the Year

Mass. teachers union snubs National Teacher of the Year

Votes down motion congratulating Dorchester charter school teacher

SYDNEY CHAFFEE WAS WELCOMED to the White House last month. She was honored at an event in Boston by the governor and the state education commissioner. But the first Massachusetts educator ever named National Teacher of Year was given the cold shoulder by the state’s largest teachers union. Delegates at the Massachusetts Teachers Association annual(...)

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Few answers on corrections spending  

Few answers on corrections spending  

Baker, sheriffs offer muted explanations for findings  

GOV. CHARLIE BAKER and the state’s sheriffs offered no clear explanation this week for why corrections funding is going up as inmate populations are declining. The puzzling spending pattern was detailed in a study released on Monday by MassINC, the nonpartisan public policy research organization that publishes CommonWealth. The report found that spending on corrections, especially in the county systems overseen by the state’s 14 elected(...)

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Tracking assisted living ‘incidents’

Tracking assisted living ‘incidents’

Half of reports were filed late with state

Massachusetts assisted living facilities reported 305 cases of abuse, neglect, and exploitation involving residents in 2015 – and half of the reports were filed late. Reports are supposed to be filed with state officials within 24 hours of the incident, but the data indicate 155 came in late. Most came in fairly quickly after the(...)

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Boston abandons Long Island Bridge

Boston abandons Long Island Bridge

Unclear what the city will do with the island and buildings

A correction has been added to this story. BOSTON MAYOR MARTY WALSH appears to be backing away from plans to rebuild the bridge to Long Island, partly because of opposition from the city of Quincy and partly because all the homeless and drug treatment services on the island have successfully been relocated to the mainland.(...)

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What’s going on at Millennium Tower?

What’s going on at Millennium Tower?

Developer shuffles units to secure $36m mortgage

IT’S ALL A BIT MYSTERIOUS, but a recent real estate transaction at Millennium Tower sheds some light on the financial challenges of catering to the whims of well-to-do condo buyers. According to records at the Suffolk County Registry of Deeds, 16 units in the ultra-luxury condo building in Downtown Crossing were recently sold for the(...)

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Baker’s ‘streamlined’ diversity disclosures

Baker’s ‘streamlined’ diversity disclosures

Overall numbers are good, but no breakdown for his office

Gov. Charlie Baker is doing slightly better than his predecessor in recruiting blacks, Hispanics, and Asians to work in the executive branch, but the way his administration goes about presenting demographic data makes it impossible to learn how individual agencies are faring, including his own office. A recent report from the state Office of Diversity(...)

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