Fall 2010

Fall 2010

Overcoming tough times

Overcoming tough times

We need to get serious about supporting working families in Massachusetts

Economic crises are social accelerators—things that were abstractly understood as trends are suddenly new and crushing realities. Twenty-five years ago, while the “Massachusetts Miracle” of growth charmed a generation of optimists, some observers of “deindustrialization” warned us about a looming vision of an hourglass economy of un­equal incomes and unremitting pressures on single-parent families and(...)

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Jobs held hostage by housing

Jobs held hostage by housing

Trends suggest the state’s high housing costs could drag down job growth once again

Like new england Patriots victories, high housing costs became matter of fact in Massachusetts over the last decade. As we rebuild from the Great Recession and the housing bubble that precipitated it, now is a good time to revisit whether the high cost of living is something the state can continue to take for granted.(...)

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Tribes lobby for reservation land

Seeking leverage in state gambling debate, Wampanoags push for law that would let them take Massachusetts land into trust

The demise of state gambling legislation this summer was a blow to Gov. Deval Patrick and many legislators, but no one was more disappointed when the deal fell apart than members of two Massachusetts Indian tribes, the 2,200-member Mashpee Wampanoag and the 1,200-member Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head (Aquinnah). For years, both tribes have eyed(...)

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Big citizen

Big citizen

Alan Khazei hoped to become the state’s next US senator, but he says “citizen” is the highest office in the land. In a new book, the co-founder of City Year says a robust national service movement can repair broken communities, tap our “justice nerve,” and help reinvigorate American civic life

  Alan Khazei stepped into the spotlight last fall when he ran in the special election race to fill Ted Kennedy’s seat in the US Senate. But the high-profile race was hardly his initial foray into public service. In fact, it represented more of a capstone to the more than 20 years Khazei has devoted(...)

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Legislative pay

Legislative pay

The wages of sausage-making

many massachusetts legislators say the salary they receive as full-time lawmakers is not enough to live on and raise a family, so the majority—nearly 60 percent—report some form of outside income. But a look at legislative salaries throughout the United States indicates the pay in the Bay State is not half bad. While it certainly(...)

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Advice to the governor: Tough medicine

Advice to the governor: Tough medicine

A statewide global budget is needed to control the rising cost of health care

Click here for more advice for the governor Health care spending is back at the top of the agenda in Massachusetts, and addressing it must be a top priority of the next governor. Four years ago, the state made a historic commitment to expand insurance coverage to nearly all citizens of the Commonwealth. Last spring,(...)

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Advice to the Governor: Think smart

Advice to the Governor: Think smart

The best economic development strategy is to cultivate smart people and get out of their way

Click here for more advice for the governor During a painful recession, gubernatorial candidates make too many promises about fixing our near-term problems and too few commitments about the investments needed for enduring economic prosperity. In truth, the governor of Massachusetts can do little to impact next year’s state unemployment rate, which is determined by(...)

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