City Council President Bill Linehan presided over today's council meeting with the help of his very own Bill Linehan bobblehead.
The Jamaica Plain Gazette interviews Boston 2024 President Dan Oâ€™Connell, who says that the committee has already IDed a North Shore site (hmm, so maybe they're not so short-sighted?) in case the local city councilor comes out against shutting down Franklin Park for use by the horsey set:
If, for example, â€ś[City Councilor] Matt Oâ€™Malley came to me and said there is no support [in his district] for using Franklin Park as a venue, we would look elsewhereâ€ť for another option, he said.
Councilor Michelle Wu (at large) last night gave birth to her and husband Conor's first child, Blaise Francis Pewarski, 7 lbs., 13 oz. and 20 inches long. Mom, father and son are doing fine.
Mayor Walsh wants to eliminate a restriction that limits voters to signing nominating petitions for just one district councilor and mayoral candidate and four at-large councilors in an election year.
The Daily Free Press reports BU President Robert Brown and the City Council have reached an agreement under which Brown will discuss the diversity of his school's workforce at a hearing on Dec. 19.
The Globe reports Boston University has gone to court to try to block a City Council subpoena requiring President Robert Brown to show up at a council committee hearing on Tuesday.
The council demanded Brown's presence after Councilor Tito Jackson reported he had been disrespected by Brown when Brown sent him a note the afternoon before an earlier council hearing that Brown could not make it.
For the second straight meeting, the City Council agreed to delay a vote on Councilor Charles Yancey's proposal for a $120 million high school in Mattapan.
The council approved borrowing for the high school last month, but the measure needs two positive votes before it can go to the mayor for his consideration.
The City Council today ordered the president of Boston University to appear before one of its committees on 4 p.m. on Dec. 2 to discuss the university's workforce diversity.
The council unanimously approved the formal summons after Councilor Tito Jackson (Roxbury), who is studying diversity in post-secondary education in Boston, said Brown stood him up for a hearing on the issue after having agreed to appear.
Jackson acknowledged Brown did send a letter begging off the 10 a.m. hearing - to which his office had earlier agreed. But, he added, "it is unacceptable to send a letter at 4:45 the day before."
City Councilors Charles Yancey (Dorchester) and Tito Jackson (Roxbury) want the council to approve an ordinance requiring all companies with more than 100 employees in Boston:
File a report each year stating the race, gender, number and percentage of Boston workers employed at each level of the companyâ€™s operation as well as the racial and gender composition of the Boston workers at each level of the companyâ€™s operations.
The City Council today was about to vote for the second time on Councilor Charles Yancey's proposal to borrow $120 million to build a new high school in Mattapan - which would have sent the matter to Mayor Walsh - when Yancey asked for the vote to be delayed for two weeks.
The City Council today approved a hearing on aggressive collection tactics by a company working for the city to collect on back auto-excise taxes that Councilor Tim McCarthy (Hyde Park, Roslindale, Mattapan) says many people may not even realize they owe.
McCarthy, who called for the hearing, said today he has a constituent unable to renew his driver's license because of a 1988 bill for $100 that, with interest, now totals $1,784.29. The company demanded all the money at once, he said.
Councilors Tito Jackson (Roxbury) and Ayanna Pressley (at large) want the school department to just say no to pepper spray.
School police, who do not carry guns, say pepper spray would help them better control violent situations. But in a request to the council for a hearing on the BPS idea, the two councilors say they don't understand the need when violence in Boston schools is declining and when pepper spray brings with it a variety of health risks and legal liabilities for the city:
Lawrence Harmon ponders Councilor Charles Yancey's pursuit of a new high school in Mattapan and says the idea could work - if the city converts the current West Roxbury Education Complex into a K-8 school.
Yancey and Mattapan would get a state-of-the-art high school (open to students from across the city), even as secondary enrollment across the city drops, while West Roxbury parents would get the extra K-8 seats they've been arguing for for years, he writes.
However, the $20,000 raise - which would also mean pension increases for councilors - got enough votes to show the council could override a mayoral veto. The raises would go into effect in 2016, which might be soon enough to save the councilors from poverty.
The City Council today approved a hearing on BPL finances to rein in what at-large City Councilor Steve Murphy called an apparent "shadow government" overseeing Boston libraries
UPDATE: The Dorchester Reporter reports Baker doesn't want to rent out space in libraries but instead wants to look at how to include libraries in new mixed-use developments, such as the one that will eventually replace the Globe complex on Morrissey Boulevard.
City Councilor Frank Baker (Dorchester) will ask his fellow counselors tomorrow to consider the idea of turning some branch libraries into revenue generators by renting out space in them.
The City Council voted 9-4 today to increase councilors' wages from $87,500 to $107,500 a year, starting in 2016.
The delay in raises means councilors won't have to face potential fines and jail time for possible violations of state ethics laws because the raises will only apply to councilors elected in the 2015 city elections.
City councilors said today they're not going to stand for being disrespected by the Zoning Board of Appeals. So they're calling a hearing.
Councilors Steve Murphy (at large) and Councilor Josh Zakim (Fenway, Mission Hill, Back Bay, Beacon Hill) say they were infuriated and aghast at a Sept. 23 zoning hearing on a project on Hereford Street. The two councilors and Mayor Walsh asked the board to defer any action on the proposal, in part because not all nearby residents had been notified of the hearing. Murphy said the board acknowledged the requests and yet still voted 5-2 to approve the work.
City Council President Bill Linehan today announced he's keeping the proposed 29% wage hike for councilors in a committee for now, rather than letting councilors vote.
Linehan has vociferously backed increasing councilor pay to $112,500, saying councilors are well worth it, have not gotten raises in eight years and cost city residents less than $9 apiece a year. But at a hearing on Monday, a city attorney warned councilors could be risking fines and prison time if they gave themselves pay hikes under state conflict-of-interest laws.