Summer 2011

Summer 2011

Correspondence

Senator: Lawrence making progress Your article, “Lawrence on the mat,” in CommonWealth’s spring issue painted a misleading view of the city of Law­rence, which I represent in the state Senate. Author Gabrielle Gurley claims that “there’s a desperate urgency to fill the city’s leadership void” and blames city officials for failing to attract new businesses(...)

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Higher ed cheerleader

Higher ed cheerleader

Robert Caret, the new University of Massachusetts president, wants to increase investment in the state's university system--both emotional and monetary--of taxpayers, elected officials and alumni

The University of Massachusetts matters. It matters for a lot of reasons and to a lot of people—parents, students, lawmakers, government officials, and taxpayers with no connections except that their money supports the system and they all want a bang for their buck. More than 68,000 students, full- and part-time, mostly Massa­chusetts kids, attend one(...)

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State pushing bulk solar sales

state officials are trying to drive down the cost of solar power for homeowners and small businesses by bringing potential buyers together with sellers in a more cost-efficient manner. Right now, solar installers have to make their pitch house by house. The state’s new program, called Solarize Massa­chu­setts, aims to round up a bunch of(...)

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Conventions of color coming to Boston

Conventions of color coming to Boston

two african-american organizations are coming to Boston for major conventions this summer, a breakthrough for a city with a national reputation for not being welcoming to people of color.    James Rooney, executive director of the Massachusetts Convention Center Authority The Urban League, with more than 3,000 delegates, is hitting town in late July and Blacks(...)

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Swan Boats, Sullivan's get sweet deals from city, state

Swan Boats, Sullivan’s get sweet deals from city, state

the swan boats in the Public Garden and Sullivan’s hot dog stand on Castle Island in South Boston are two of Boston’s most beloved businesses. But the landmark operations are showered with more than just the love of an adoring public; they also enjoy unusually generous leases from their government landlords. The state’s deal with(...)

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Contract dispute

Contract dispute

Boston's fiscal watchdog and the city's schools tussle over the use of unadvertised, no-bid contracts

when officials at the Clarence Edwards Middle School in Charlestown needed someone to work as a lunch and hall monitor, they did what often happens in the Boston Public Schools. They hired someone they know—a retired teacher who used to work at the school—without advertising the position.    Matthew Cahill, executive director of the Boston(...)

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Divining Devens

Divining Devens

As the former Army base searches for its identity, a group of residents wants to form the state's 352nd town

massachusetts hasn’t created a new municipality in nearly a century, since East Brookfield and Brookfield divorced in 1920. Five years ago, it looked like Devens would displace East Brook­field as the state’s newest town. Commercial construction at the old Army base on Route 2 had been speeding along for a decade, and it had recently(...)

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