A Herald blackout and Olympic assurance that ‘people adjust’

If a debate falls on a Thursday night in a semi-forested office park but no one from the Boston Herald is there to hear it, did it really happen?

Last night’s Boston Olympics showdown was the story of the day, but its sponsorship by Fox 25 and the Boston Globe seems to have gotten in the way of the Herald even acknowledging that it took place. Today’s Herald has a news story on concerns by area mayors about Olympic-sized traffic problems and an editorial on Boston 2024’s grudging decision to release the full bid document it originally submitted to the US Olympic Committee. But there is no mention of last night’s prime-time televised debate, where Boston 2024 chairman Steve Pagliuca and board member Dan Doctoroff squared off at Fox’s Dedham studios against No Boston Olympics co-chair Chris Dempsey and Smith College economist Andrew Zimbalist.

Granted the debate wasn’t always riveting or entirely illuminating, but it was indisputably a thing that happened that was part of an ongoing, huge local story.

Though there was a lot of talking over each other and delving into weedy matters, there was some news. Doctoroff put to rest any lingering doubts about the issue of taxpayer exposure, saying the International Olympic Committee would not allow a Boston bid without a taxpayer guarantee from the city to backstop the enterprise. That seems pretty consequential, given Mayor Marty Walsh‘s past statements that he would not put taxpayer dollars at risk.

Reaction from Hizzoner will be worth tracking.

Also worth watching will be Gov. Charlie Baker, who, as Shirley Leung writes, will soon have to show his hand. Baker has been decidedly noncommittal on the Olympics, but has suggested he’ll have something to say once he’s received a report on the Olympic proposal from an independent consulting firm, which is due next month. The US Olympic Committee will be watching closely, Leung writes descriptively, to see whether Baker will “bring out the pom poms – or sit on the sidelines.” There’s plenty of reason to think he’d like the whole idea to go away so he can focus on the things he ran for office to work on.

Meanwhile, a Murderers’ Row of power-hitting Globe sports writers have made clear what they think. After tough takedowns of the Games from John Powers and Bob Ryan, Dan Shaughnessy weighs in today, saying Boston 2024 boosters all fall into one of two categories: “1. People who stand to profit; 2. Hopelessly naive people.”

Though the Download did make a glancing, and positive, Yankees reference in the previous paragraph, there was nothing in-your-face about it. It was inevitable, on the other hand, that Boston 2024’s decision to put a brash multimillionaire New Yorker forward to argue its case would prove to be yet another bad call. Of Doctoroff’s awkward attempt to tamp down concerns about Olympic disruptions, Shaughnessy says, “We don’t need to have a rich guy from New York tell us that ‘people adjust.'”

–MICHAEL JONAS

 

BEACON HILL

An emaciated 7-year-old Hardwick boy is hospitalized and in state custody, his father is being held without bail on assault and endangerment charges — and there are now lots of questions for the state’s Department of Children and Families, which was supposed to be providing services to the family. (Boston Globe) “There’s a big difference between a family in need of services and an abuser in need of a jail cell, and DCF does not understand the difference,” attorney Wendy Murphy, a child welfare advocate, tells the Herald.

Gov. Charlie Baker isn’t saying where he stands on updating the state’s Public Records Law, possibly because the status quo suits him fine. (CommonWealth)

Attorney General Maura Healey testifies in support of legislation that would bar the state from taking away the driver’s licenses of those convicted of drug offenses. (Associated Press) CommonWealth spotlights the issue in the cover story of the new summer issue.

Westminster tried to ban the sale of tobacco products last year, so lawmakers are circulating bills on Beacon Hill that would make it illegal to ban retailers from selling tobacco products they are legally allowed to sell currently. (The Sun)

MUNICIPAL MATTERS

Cambridge may triple the fee it charges to large-scale development projects to fund affordable housing. (Boston Globe)

Lynn restaurant owners lobby to move last call from 1 am to 2 am. (The Item)

Telegram & Gazette columnist Clive McFarlane says the Worcester City Council has never been an aggressive financial monitor, which makes councilor Michael Gaffney’s proposed audit of the Mosaic Cultural Complex so unusual. Could politics be involved, he asks.

New Bedford envisions a new downtown. (Standard-Times)

OLYMPICS

Five takeaways from the Olympics debate. (CommonWealth) Here’s the Globe account of the face-off.

CASINOS

The US attorney’s office files a testy motion in the Everett land case, and in the process calls the city of Boston’s lawsuit against the Massachusetts Gaming Commission “vicious.”(CommonWealth)

WASHINGTON/NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL

Three are killed as a gunman opens fire at a movie theater in Lafayette, Louisiana showing Trainwreck. (Time) The incident comes just after the gunman in a similar 2012 theater showing is sentenced.

Sandra Bland is dead, writes Michael Cohen in today’s Globe, because a Texas police officer could not keep his cool and “de-escalate” a situation.

ELECTIONS

Two inspectors general ask the Justice Department to open a criminal investigation into the handling of Hillary Clinton’s email account as secretary of state. (New York Times)

The Lynn City Council moves to do away with this fall’s preliminary election. (The Item)

Worcester County is becoming fertile ground for Massachusetts Republicans. (Boston Globe)

BUSINESS/ECONOMY

A group of horse trainers and owners say one of the largest horse-racing companies in the world has expressed interest in leasing or possibly buying Suffolk Downs, but the track’s owners say they have received no proposal. (WBUR)

The Boston Redevelopment Authority wishes it could call urban renewal something else. (Bay State Banner)

HEALTH CARE

Dr. David Rideout says his business as Salem’s first medical marijuana doctor is starting to catch on. (Salem News)

Steward Health Care is facing state fines for the second time for failing to submit required financial reports on time. (Boston Globe)

CRIMINAL JUSTICE

Ex-priest Ronald Paquin’s 12-year prison sentence for sexual molestation is about to end, but Essex County District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett is petitioning the court to keep him locked up. (Eagle-Tribune) Meanwhile, in Derry, New Hampshire, a town councilor is outed as someone who served six months in jail for third degree sexual assault 30 years ago. (Eagle-Tribune)

MEDIA

The Washington Post explains its polling methodology.