The Codcast: Walsh’s woes

These are not the happy days of summer for Boston’s mayor Marty Walsh.

The city’s first-term mayor is reeling from one crisis to another, whether it’s the botched IndyCar race he championed — which has left thousands of ticket buyers stiffed of refunds — the troubles at Boston Latin School, or, most ominously, the ongoing federal investigation of union-friendly strong-arming by City Hall officials. The score on that front: two indictments and, possibly, more to come.

Following yesterday’s indictment of intergovernmental affairs chief Tim Sullivan, the Herald’s Bob McGovern speculates that US Attorney Carmen Ortiz is looking to snag someone higher up the City Hall food chain, potentially even Walsh himself. Whatever one thinks of the merits of the political corruption cases Ortiz has pursued, the track record suggests it’s not wise to bet against her, writes Joan Vennochi.

Regardless of the legal entanglements his administration is facing, Walsh is facing growing calls from local columnists for a “reboot” or “serious shake-up” of his team at City Hall.

MassLive’s Gin Dumcius and Kyle Clauss of Boston magazine join CommonWealth’s Michael Jonas to ponder the troubles in Walsh’s City Hall.

“Walsh is now halfway through his term and it looks like he needs to right the ship,” says Dumcius in this week’s Codcast. “The question is, who he hires and whether he can stabilize his administration, which right now, I think it’s fair to say in some instances, is definitely flailing.”

–MICHAEL JONAS

 

BEACON HILL

Lawmakers from the House and Senate reach a quick consensus on a budget that trims the fiscal 2017 spending plan by $413 million. (State House News)

Sen. Linda Dorcena Forry, the chamber’s only black member, chastised opponents of her amendment to fingerprint ride-hailing service drivers, who argue the background check is discriminatory to minorities. (CommonWealth) While some expected fingerprinting to be part of the Senate bill, Scott Harshbarger explains how things run on Beacon Hill and it has something to do with money. (Greater Boston) The Senate bill would shield information Uber and Lyft file with the state from the Public Records Law. (Salem News)

The Senate energy debate could get heated with debates on a natural gas pipeline “tax,” the size of hydroelectricity and offshore wind procurements, and solar power. (CommonWealth) Realtors say the Senate bill’s requirements for energy audits and grades could hamper sales.

A Globe editorial says summer jobs for teens should be a priority in the state budget, despite the tight times.

MUNICIPAL MATTERS

The latest indictment of public officials by US Attorney Carmen Ortiz further raises her profile as a no-nonsense prosecutor. (Boston Herald)

CASINOS

A federal judge has put the suit by foes of the Mashpee Wampanoag casino in Taunton on a fast track and has narrowed the focus to the issue of whether the Interior Department legally granted recognition to the tribe. (Cape Cod Times)

The MGM casino in Springfield begins to reshape Main Street. (Masslive)

ELECTIONS

An advocacy group has filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission accusing Donald Trump of illegally soliciting campaign donations from foreign citizens. (U.S. News & World Report)

Trump Boston fundraiser draws protesters. (WBUR) Former senator Scott Brown says Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s obsession with criticizing him is a little creepy. (Masslive)

BUSINESS/ECONOMY

Boston-based Santander bank fails a Federal Reserve capital examination for the third year in a row. (Boston Business Journal)

The Senate approved a bill already passed by the House to allow Puerto Rico to restructure $72 billion in debt to give the island some breathing room to get its fiscal house in order. (New York Times)

EDUCATION

UMass Lowell buys two more private properties in Lowell, effectively cutting the city’s tax revenues by $22,000. (The Sun)

Civil rights activists demand a role for black parents and teachers in the selection of the next headmaster at Boston Latin School. (Boston Herald)

Bridgewater State University has signed an agreement with Cape Air to extend the airline’s partnership with the school’s aviation curriculum. (Standard-Times)

TRANSPORTATION

Mark Williams of Boston University’s Questrom School of Business offers a five-point plan to save the MBTA pension fund. (Boston Globe)

ENERGY/ENVIRONMENT

A report from Entergy indicates the Pilgrim nuclear power plant was operating at full power one day without either of the emergency backup generators, which are required to safely shut the reactor down. (Cape Cod Times)

The gypsy moths are back — in a big way. (Boston Globe)

CRIMINAL JUSTICE/COURTS

William Cintolo, the attorney for Timothy Sullivan, a top aide to Boston Mayor Marty Walsh who was indicted on Wednesday, calls the case “crap.” (Masslive)

Several members of the Governor’s Council, a number of whom are defense attorneys, claim too many prosecutors have been nominated for judgeships in the past six years. (State House News Service)

Police say an 81-year-old Kingston man was shot and killed by an 80-year-old Rhode Island man, who was later killed by police in a shootout, in a dispute over an unpaid church loan. (Associated Press)

MEDIA
Facebook is giving preference to family and friends on its news feed, which is a blow to news publishers. (New York Times)