Weekly Political Report – Week Ending November 24, 2010


Week Ending November 24, 2010

Following the release of the Ware report, detailing systemic abuse and
corruption within the Massachusetts Probation Department, Speaker Robert
DeLeo (D-Winthrop) vowed this week to overhaul the department. DeLeo
also announced that Speaker Pro Tempore Tom Petrolati (D-Ludlow), who
had been implicated as engaging in legislative quid pro quo, would not
seek reappointment to his legislative leadership position. When DeLeo
became speaker in 2009, he retained Rep. Petrolati as Speaker Pro Tem,
the same position Petrolati had held under former Speaker Sal DiMasi.
Although Governor Patrick’s attempt to place the probation department
under control of the Governor’s office failed in the House earlier this
session, Speaker DeLeo said that probation reform would be his top
priority.

On Monday, the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities approved a
plan for National Grid to buy half of the expected energy output
generated by the proposed Cape Wind offshore wind facility. DPU
officials acknowledged that residential customers could see their
electric bills increase by 1.3-1.7% while commercial and industrial
customers could see a 1.7-2.2% increase. Energy and Environmental
Secretary Ian Bowles said the benefits outweigh the costs of the project
and will allow Massachusetts to meet renewable energy and greenhouse gas
emissions reduction requirements. The DPU did not approve the second
National Grid contract with Cape Wind to purchase the remaining output,
saying that approving the contract now “would serve no clear purpose.”
On a related note, US Interior Secretary Ken Salazar this week announced
a Smart from the Start initiative which would allow the federal
government to identify priority wind areas for potential development and
accelerate the lease process.

John Nunnari, Assoc AIA
BSA/AIA MA Public Policy Director
jnunnari@architects.org <mailto:afienman@architects.org>
617-951-1433 x263
617-951-0845 (fax)

Boston Society of Architects/AIA
The Architects Building
52 Broad Street, Boston MA 02109-4301
http://www.architects.org <http://www.architects.org/&gt;

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