Recent Stories

Give us a break, Amazon

Give us a break, Amazon

Forget tax breaks, think about your obligation to the country

IT’S A STORY TYPICAL of 21st century America. Amazon, a $150 billion company with $12 billion a year in profit and more than $20 billion in the bank, tells governments across North America they should drop what they’re doing and compete, with just a few weeks notice, for the promise of thousands of new workers(...)

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Bus maintenance outsourcing makes sense

Bus maintenance outsourcing makes sense

MBTA needs to adopt 21st century management practices

IT’S ALL BUT irresistible to characterize the MBTA’s efforts to contract out part of its bus maintenance operation as a union issue: Will bus maintenance continue to be performed by unionized T employees or will it be privatized? But focusing on that question misses the point. The proposal is really about bringing bus maintenance management and practices into the(...)

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For Mass., high stakes in health debate

Efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act gained some momentum this week as Republicans put forward legislation that would put the brakes on federal health care spending in a way that would disproportionately impact blue states such as Massachusetts, New York, and California. The legislation, filed by Sens. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and Bill(...)

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T notes: Ramirez says riders don’t think MBTA cares

T notes: Ramirez says riders don’t think MBTA cares

New website is here, plus fare and signals systems on the way

NEW MBTA GENERAL MANAGER LUIS RAMIREZ said he spent a lot of time traveling on buses and subways over the last week and came away convinced that most riders don’t think the T cares about them. At his first meeting of the MBTA’s Fiscal and Management Control Board, Ramirez said he wants to change “the narrative(...)

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T, bus repair union negotiating again

T, bus repair union negotiating again

Lang, of oversight board, working both sides

MBTA OFFICIALS AND THE UNION representing workers at three bus maintenance garages facing privatization have entered into serious negotiations, with a member of the T’s oversight board working to bring both sides together. The T and the union, which had barely talked for months, have met three times in the last two weeks and are(...)

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Baker opens a legal can of worms

Baker opens a legal can of worms

Pushes strict liability for deaths caused by distributing illegal drugs

GOV. CHARLIE BAKER filed new legislation last month to battle the opioid crisis. His bill proposes some “important updates” to our arsenal of weapons in this fight, one of which, he says, would add a measure of “accountability” to the current strategy of treatment, education, and prevention. Specifically, the governor intends to “ensure that those who(...)

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Nonprofits deserve a lot more scrutiny

Nonprofits deserve a lot more scrutiny

Current tax policy may make sense, but let’s investigate

THE ISSUE ARISES every so often, like a phoenix from the flames, especially around budget time.  This year was no different.  How do we, and how should we, tax nonprofit entities? Are nonprofit entities paying their fair share? Are nonprofit entities truly nonprofit? Before we answer that question, we need to take a closer look(...)

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Preserve ‘Grand Bargain’ in education 

Preserve ‘Grand Bargain’ in education 

Legislation, Democratic Party platform plank against testing are steps backward

IN 1993, THE Democratic-led Legislature, together with a Republican governor, entered into a “Grand Bargain” in education policy: The state would substantially increase education funding in exchange for schools using high standards and implementing a strong accountability system to measure progress against those standards. The Patrick administration and the overwhelmingly Democratic Legislature renewed and strengthened that bargain in(...)

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