Wellesley police chief in spotlight

Wellesley Police Chief Terrence Cunningham, who is serving as president of the International Association of Chiefs of Police, apologized on Monday at the organization’s annual conference for “the role that our profession has played in society’s historical mistreatment of communities of color.”

In his speech at the San Diego conference, Cunningham hailed policing as a noble profession focused on service to the community. But he said the history of policing has also had “darker periods” where law enforcement officials were required to perform “unpalatable tasks” that “created a multigenerational — almost inherited — mistrust between many communities of color and their law enforcement agencies.”

Cunningham said it was time to acknowledge and apologize for the actions of the past and work with all groups “to break this historic cycle of mistrust.”

The stunning admission by the head of the nation’s largest police organization generally drew praise from civil rights groups, condemnation from some police officials, and a standing ovation at the conference.

Cunningham is the police chief of a tony, low-crime suburb of Boston where the median home price is $1.2 million and the population of 26,000 is 90 percent white, 6 percent Asian, 2 percent African American, and 2 percent Hispanic. Even so, Wellesley has not been immune from racial incidents. In 1990, Wellesley police gained notoriety for pulling over Boston Celtics rookie Dee Brown after mistaking him for a bank robber.

Leaders of the Black Lives Matter movement said they wanted to see the words of Cunningham backed up by actions. Sherrilyn Ifill, president of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, applauded the speech and said her organization was working with the International Association of Chiefs of Police on ways to improve policing. (Ifill and Cunningham appeared together on Face the Nation in July on this very issue; their comments start at the 31-minute mark.)

At the same time, some police officers thought Cunningham’s remarks sent the wrong message. “Our profession is under attack right now and what we don’t need is chiefs like him perpetuating that we are all bad guys in law enforcement,” said Lt. Bob Kroll, head of the Police Officers Federation of Minneapolis. “I think it’s an asinine statement.”



Bob Katzen of Beacon Hill Roll Call reports that 35 percent of Democratic reps in the House voted with Speaker Robert DeLeo 100 percent of the time. (Sun Chronicle)

A Gloucester Times editorial hails the Baker administration for drastically reducing the number of homeless families in hotels and motels.


The Quincy Housing Authority moved more than 40 tenants from units in a Germantown complex and an elderly housing building on the other side of the city as officials fight recurring bedbug infestations at both sites. (Patriot Ledger)

As winter approaches, Brockton city councilors are moving to pass an ordinance to fine residents up to $200 for failing to remove snow and ice from sidewalks in front of their homes. (The Enterprise)

Fairhaven selectmen are revisiting a controversial proposal to allow members of town boards to participate in public meetings remotely. (Standard-Times)


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Oh no! Boston Herald columnist Steve Buckley says Tom Brady has a Trump problem.

A WBUR poll of likely voters indicates Hillary Clinton has a 26-point lead over Donald Trump in Massachusetts. (WBUR) Brent Benson reports that the size of Clinton’s victory could have an impact on down-ballot races for the State House. (CommonWealth)

Sen. John McCain, arguing for a Republican majority to get voters to the polls, made a blanket promise to block any Supreme Court nominee put forth by Hillary Clinton if she becomes president. (U.S. News & World Report)

Heather Hill, a professor of education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, takes issue with her colleague Thomas Kane’s support for Question 2. (CommonWealth) State Rep. Alice Peisch, the cochair of the Legislature’s education committee and a one-time charter school opponent, pens an op-ed explaining why she supports the November ballot question that would allow more charter schools. (MetroWest Daily News)

Opponents of marijuana legalization roll out their first TV ad, which “imagines an almost dystopian neighborhood overrun by pot shops and stoners,” writes Josh Miller. (Boston Globe) The Yes on 4 campaign is rolling out its second ad, this one featuring internist Susan Lucas talking about the benefits of legalization. (Masslive) State Reps. David Rogers of Cambridge (yes) and Hannah Kane of Shrewsbury (no) debate the question on Greater Boston.

The Globe backs passage by Boston voters of the Community Preservation Act.

A Lowell Sun editorial welcomes the fact that incumbent Rep. Rady Mom has a Republican challenger, Kamara Kay, who is also Cambodian-American.


Tuscan Brands owner and CEO Jack Faro completes the purchase of Rockingham Park in Salem, New Hampshire. (Eagle-Tribune)

Donald Trump is facing a new group of protestors: his brand customers, who are boycotting products and resorts stamped with his name. (New York Times)


Former New York mayor Michael Bloomberg, who says regular visits there as a boy growing up in Medford “changed his life,” is donating $50 million to the Museum of Science to fund its education programs. (Boston Globe) Here is a 2008 CommonWealth interview with museum president Ioannis Miaoulis about his determination to ramp up engineering education.

After some tough spending reductions, the construction of a new Billerica high school is now back on track. (Lowell Sun)


State health officials hear why it’s hard to get health care costs under control: It’s the prices, stupid. (CommonWealth) Health care cost increases are hitting particularly hard at Massachusetts small businesses, some of which are seeing premium hikes of 20 percent. (Boston Herald)

When the federal HealthCare.gov marketplace opens in two weeks, consumers will have an option for a standardized health plan for basic services without a deductible. (New York Times)

Gov. Charlie Baker says he supports the proposed $1 billion expansion of Boston Children’s Hospital. (Boston Globe)

A planned merger between Southcoast Health and Rhode Island-based Care New England announced nearly a year ago has been called off by mutual agreement though officials would not say why. (Herald News)


The MBTA’s Fiscal Management and Control Board gives the green light for staff to begin the process of hiring companies to design, finance, operate, and maintain a new cashless system for collecting fares. (CommonWealth)

The Boston Carmen’s Union says the T is overstating the savings from privatizing the agency’s money collection and counting operations. (CommonWealth)

T officials unveil initiatives to curb Green Line derailments. (CommonWealth)

Gov. Charlie Baker says “acts of God” justify the waiver of penalties incurred by Keolis, the commuter rail operator. (CommonWealth)


A Washington ballot question establishing a carbon tax has split the environmental community, in part because of how the money raised would be spent. (Governing)


East Boston casino foes are gearing up yet again to keep gambling facilities out of their community — and next-door Revere. (Boston Globe)


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Police say a call that prompted a massive SWAT team response to a Revere rooming house may have been a hoax. (Boston Globe)

US District Court Judge Mark Wolf is asking lots of questions about prosecutors’ call for the early prison release of ailing former House speaker Sal DiMasi, with his concerns centering on whether DiMasi is being given special treatment because of his status as a former high-ranking pol. (Boston Globe)

Falmouth District Court Judge Michael Creedon, a former state representative and senator, has agreed to retire early after an investigation into allegations that he made racially insensitive comments to another judge in his chambers. (Cape Cod Times)


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The Center for Public Integrity says people working in journalism have donated about $396,000 to one of the presidential candidates this year, most of it to Hillary Clinton.

Dan Kennedy says freedom of the press is under assault in the country and suggests it will only get worse if Donald Trump is elected. (Media Nation)