Mayor Walsh today announced a set of initiatives to make Boston roads safer and less clogged that include lowering the default citywide speed limit from 25 to 20 m.p.h., dedicated bus lanes on Brighton Avenue in Allston and North Washington Street along the North End, special pickup/drop-off lanes for Uber and Lyft cars - but also rush-hour surcharges for riding in them - and free T passes for all students in grades 7 through 12, regardless of whether they're BPS students. Read more.
Mayor Walsh announced today that the city will begin to put its cash on hand in environmentally and socially conscious investments - and in local financial institutions.
The operating funds, which the city uses to pay bills, could total about $150 million a year in short-term fixed income securities of companies that have strong environmental and societal records, and about $100 million to be deposited in local banks.
On the way home after the Patriots parade this evening, Mayor Walsh spotted a car on fire on the Expressway. The Boston Fire Department reports Hizzona stayed with the driver until firefighters could arrive to douse the flames.
Anybody remember the time there was a fire in the Pru tower and Ray Flynn ran up the stairs towards it?
Mayor Walsh has filed a proposed ordinance that would let scooter companies begin lining city sidewalks with their for-hire two wheelers - as long as register with the city and promise to get their users not to block sidewalk ramps, crosswalks, fire hydrants and building entrances. Read more.
Mayor Walsh said this morning he is introducing a series of bills in the state legislature that, if enacted, would let the city increase the fees developers of commercial buildings have to pay into a fund aimed at increasing the stock of affordable housing, increase the surcharge on all property transactions for affordable housing, parks and historical preservation, ban arbitrary evictions of people over 75, give some low-income residents the right to a lawyer in eviction proceedings and give groups of tenants in buildings going condo the right to buy the building from its owner. Read more.
The Globe reports former state Rep. Carlos Henriquez as an aide to work on several issues, including reducing violence in the city.
A city spokesperson said the mayor believes in second chances and that Henriquez, convicted and expelled from the house in 2014 has long worked to support youth, reduce violence and help people with trauma.
Mayor Walsh and a local philanthropic family are starting a fund to provide financial support to Boston students at certain local colleges who are nearing graduation but who might be forced to drop out because of financial hardships. Read more.
Mayor Walsh joined with State Treasurer Deb Goldberg today to announced a program in which the state will put $50 into a 529 college-savings account for every baby born or adopted in Massachusetts after Jan. 1, 2020. Cool idea, but the name sounds like something from an Austin Powers movie.
From elected officials to rape victims and their supporters, several thousand people gathered on City Hall Plaza to send a message to Sen. Jeff Flake to vote no on Brett Cavanaugh - a message he may not have heard since his scheduled 10:30 a.m. talk on another part of the plaza was pushed back to this afternoon. Read more.
Mayor Walsh announced this morning Boston is upping its 2030 housing goals by 30% - from 53,000 new housing units by then to 69,000, based on new projections that show the city's population growing to nearly 760,000 by then.
The Boston Sun reports the mayor, who once completely opposed the idea of allowing a place where people with opioid addictions could shoot up under medical supervision, told the South End Forum he has been impressed by the experience in Edmonton, where they're spread among hospitals in the city, reducing the odds of creating a single point where people would be preyed on outside. In addition to medical supervision, people are given the opportunity to sign up for programs to help them beat their addiction.
The question might be moot for now, however, because the local US Attorney has vowed to go after any medical professionals who participate in such a program.
Mayor Walsh today announced the city has sued 13 drug companies, four drug distributors - and a pain doctor now serving an eight-year federal prison sentence for handing out opioid prescriptions like Halloween candy - for the $64 million the city alleges their negligence with opioids has cost and will continue to cost Boston. Read more.
Mayor Walsh announced yesterday that the city will solicit bids next week for a consultant to develop a "municipal electricity aggregation program" that would essentially buy electricity in bulk for participating ratepayers - with a higher percentage of power coming from renewable sources than from your typical electric utilities. Read more.
The Herald reports Mayor Walsh is warning scooter companies that their wheeled products will be ruthlessly rounded up and stuck in storage if they show up in Boston, at least before the city comes up with regulations for them.
The things suddenly appeared Friday on the streets of Cambridge and Somerville.
The mayor's office says it finally has a plan to permanently convert the vast field of bricks outside City Hall into a place that can support even more festivals and become a place where people will want to come for more than just special events, but that the work to achieve the seemingly impossible will require it to cancel the annual winter festival that had brought hundreds of thousands of people to the plaza over the past two winters, and don't you dare think the timing might have had to do with increasing friction between the city, the festival's operator and its subcontractors. Read more.
Mayor Walsh said today he's picked a South Carolina-based lawfirm to file suit against the makers of opioids to try to recover some of the costs he says the city has incurred treating and dealing with users of their products. Read more.
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