Globe seeks more women in House leadership
The Boston Globe editorial page is demanding more women in House leadership, particularly at the helm of the House Ways and Means Committee.
The message is a familiar one for Shirley Leung, who has made breaking the glass ceiling a theme of her work as the acting editor of the editorial page and previously as a columnist. The editorial urges House Speaker Robert DeLeo to get out of his “comfort zone” and appoint a woman to the Ways and Means post and other leadership positions.
“Surely the loss this year of his trusted Ways and Means chair, Jeff Sanchez – ousted by Nika Elugardo – ought to serve as a warning that there is a price to be paid for loyalty, that the face of his membership is changing and the face of its leadership should as well,” the editorial says.
Certainly Sanchez took heat from progressives for not bucking DeLeo and delivering on a number of issues, but is the Globe really suggesting that DeLeo should bring aboard a woman who won’t be a team player?
What role do women play now? In two areas, women have higher representation in leadership than their numbers would suggest. In a third area, they have no representation at all.
According to the Legislature’s website, women account for 5 of the 21 House leadership positions (31 percent) and 9 of the 29 joint committee chairmanships (31 percent). Women hold no chairmanships at all, however, on the 11 House-only committees.
Nationally, women are not well represented in state legislatures. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, women accounted for 25.4 percent of state lawmakers this year. The state with the highest female representation was Arizona at 40 percent; the lowest was Wyoming at 11.1 percent. Massachusetts was slightly below the national average, at 24.5 percent, and below every other state in New England. Next year, Massachusetts will move up, with 28.5 of its lawmakers women.
In the wake of the Merrimack Valley gas disaster, lawmakers on Beacon Hill grill the executives of a number of gas utilities and their regulators. (WGBH)
In case you hadn’t heard, things got a little testy during an Oval Office get together between President Trump and Democratic congressional leaders Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer. (Washington Post) A Herald editorial urges Trump to press ahead with his wall-building effort at the Mexican border.
There are rumblings of a Democratic primary challenge in two years to US Rep. Seth Moulton, but like the challenge to Democratic House leader Nancy Pelosi he has led — which is the cause of the local talk — there is at this point a key missing ingredient: a candidate. (Boston Globe)
Who needs Amazon, asks Jon Chesto, when we have Wayfair, which is growing like crazy. (Boston Globe)
The Carver excavation firm employing a man who died at a Scituate job site on Friday when a bulldozer backed over him has been cited in the past for federal workplace safety violations. (Patriot Ledger)
The state’s third recreational pot store will open on Saturday in Salem, but buyers need to be registered ahead of time for specified time slots to make purchases. (Boston Herald)
The private equity firm that owns the Friendly’s restaurant chain is buying up a lot of the company’s old locations. No word on why. (MassLive)
A coalition of business groups launched an effort to reduce unnecessary emergency room visits, which it says could lower health care costs in the state by as much as $100 million. (Boston Globe)
A Dracut physician has been charged with manslaughter in connection with the overdose death of a patient he prescribed opioids for, the first such charges to be brought in the state against a health care provider. (Boston Globe)
Private companies are looking to fill the gap in mental health services provided by colleges to their students. (Boston Globe)
Luis Ramirez is out and Steve Poftak is in as the MBTA’s general manager. Ramirez is exiting with a separation agreement that pays him three months of salary ($81,200), an in-lieu-of-a-bonus payment ($44,600), and an expense reimbursement ($26,600) for helping the transition to new leadership. (CommonWealth) Adrian Walker says it’s not a good statement about the state that we seem to have a low tolerance for leaders brought in from outside from the region. (Boston Globe)
The price of electricity is going up in eastern Massachusetts to its highest level since the winter of 2015. (CommonWealth)
Federal prosecutors have handed the defense more than 18,000 pages of documents as part of the discovery process in the the corruption case against Fall River mayor Jasiel Correia, and December 18 has been set as the next hearing date in the matter. (Herald News)MEDIA
Northeastern’s Dan Kennedy interviews Heidi Radford Legg of the Shorenstein Center at Harvard about efforts to fight fake news. (WGBH)