Opinion

Pot legalization exposes generation gap in local government

Pot legalization exposes generation gap in local government

Younger voters don’t attend meetings, marijuana opponents do

MORE THAN TWO YEARS after voters passed Question 4 to legalize adult-use cannabis, retail sales are about to finally begin. It promises to be a remarkable moment but also a chaotic debut. There will be only two recreational cannabis stores open in the entire Commonwealth, and, in fact, the only two east of the Mississippi.(...)

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Getting to better health care at lower cost

Getting to better health care at lower cost

Medicaid and private health plans can bolster ‘food is medicine’ services

FOR YEARS, “MAUREEN” struggled to manage her diabetes while battling cardiac illness, asthma, and other chronic health issues. The 70-year-old Boston-area resident was not eating well and was severely overweight – until she found a recipe that helped her shed nearly 50 pounds and get her diabetes under control. Maureen enrolled in a program that(...)

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Politics, not law, guiding Healey on Exxon suit

Politics, not law, guiding Healey on Exxon suit

US Supreme Court should rein in politically motivated investigation

IN THE AGE OF TRUMPISM, political and legal norms are regularly cast aside.  The ends, we are told, justify the means.  It is in this context that businesses, particularly manufacturers, have become skeptical of Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey’s legal action against ExxonMobil as a centerpiece of her efforts to combat global climate change.  Along(...)

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Tackling transgender health disparities

Tackling transgender health disparities

Challenges remain for gender-minority adults despite defeat of referendum repealing rights

MASSACHUSETTS VOTERS SOUNDLY rejected efforts to allow discrimination against transgender individuals – upholding the current law that protects them from unfair treatment. Despite this positive news, there are continuing efforts at the federal level to bar transgender status from discussions of gender, limiting all individuals to a designation of male or female at birth. That(...)

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Let’s encourage offshore wind competition

Let’s encourage offshore wind competition

One way to do that is to separate transmission from generation

THE DEPARTMENT OF INTERIOR’S Bureau of Ocean Energy Management announced last month that it will auction three new wind energy lease areas off the Massachusetts coast, instead of the two that were initially forecast. The move provides a fresh gust of good news for the emerging wind industry in the United States. By mapping out(...)

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Civics law provides solid foundation for teachers, students

Civics law provides solid foundation for teachers, students

Criticism of statute misses breadth of mandate

IN A RECENT CommonWealth piece, University of Massachusetts Lowell professor Jack Schneider took issue with a civics education bill recently signed by Gov. Charlie Baker. The measure is primarily designed to teach and engage students through project-based civics education, an instructional approach also known as “action civics.” Schneider took issue with the new civic education(...)

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Early education is not child’s play

Early education is not child’s play

Reggio Emilia exhibit offers preschool teachers chance to learn innovative approach

AS PARENTS, TAXPAYERS, and legislators consider how best to invest in early childhood, we need more clarity about what a high-quality preschool program looks like and we need to train – and compensate – teachers so they can deliver the early education that young children deserve. While there are lots of lovely and nurturing programs,(...)

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Ignore the charter school think-tank crowd

Ignore the charter school think-tank crowd

We don’t need and can't afford charter school expansion in New Bedford

YOU ARE AN EDUCATION RESEARCHER sent to discover best practices in urban schools so that you can replicate them to create results for more kids—kids who you believe are trapped in mediocre schools. You look at three exemplar schools to scale up: School A has 336 students and rates in the state’s 85th accountability percentile,(...)

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Sudders takes wrong tack on drug costs   

Sudders takes wrong tack on drug costs  

Regulating pharmaceutical prices would kill innovation

MARYLOU SUDDERS, the Baker administration’s secretary of health and human services, is a model public servant. Honest, smart, and an advocate for vulnerable people, the Commonwealth is lucky to have her. That said, her recent op-ed advocating government “rate setting” for drug prices in the MassHealth program displays an alarming misunderstanding of the business model(...)

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State’s manufacturing past is part of the future

State’s manufacturing past is part of the future

Industry continues to be a key cog in Massachusetts’ economy

THE DIVERSITY OF the Massachusetts economy is one of its strengths. Our leading positions in health care, higher education, technology, and the life sciences have allowed the Commonwealth to thrive during periods of expansion and weather the storms of recession better than other regions. Manufacturing remains a vital sector of our national economy, and one(...)

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