Wednesday, January 14, 2009


“MassTV” Will Make State Video Available for Community Television

BOSTON – Wednesday, January 14, 2009 – Governor Deval Patrick today joined legislators and representatives from Massachusetts community access television stations to celebrate the launch of an independent online video network – MassTV – that will allow hundreds of community access television stations to share and access state video content.

“This is another way for communities, and, most importantly, citizens to get involved in their state government,” said Governor Patrick. “We will use this free network to help spread information about what we are doing on Beacon Hill and how it affects residents from around Massachusetts.”

The Governor’s Office and MassAccess – the Massachusetts Chapter of the Alliance for Community Media – worked together to develop the network, which allows local television access centers to broadcast videos produced by Massachusetts state agencies, non-profit organizations, and federal and state legislators through an innovative video sharing site.

“This has been an amazing collaboration,” said Bill Nay, Committee Chair of MassAccess and Director of Shrewsbury Local Media. “Governor Patrick and his staff are truly committed to fostering civic engagement efforts in the Commonwealth, and community television is here to help.”

Along with providing broadcast-ready videos to local access centers, “MassTV” offers a streaming size video for citizens on their Web site ( free of charge. More than 100,000 subscribers of local access television stations are already receiving programming from the MassAccess test Web site. There are an estimated two million subscribers to local cable access channels across the state.

“MassTV” is a civic network connecting local media, municipalities and Massachusetts citizens to provide citizens a better window into the progress and activities of state government.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Join the Impact's DOMA Protest Rally January 10, 2009 in Boston

Friday, January 09, 2009

Rep. Ehrlich to Donate Pay Raise

We need more politicians like Lori Ehrlich!

From the Marblehead Reporter:

Thu Jan 08, 2009, 02:32 PM EST

Marblehead - State Rep. Lori A. Ehrlich, D-Marblehead, will donate the entirety of her 5.5 percent raise for the 2009-2010 legislative session to organizations in her district that have been affected by state budget cuts, her office announced Thursday.

Under a state law approved by voters in 1998, lawmakers’ pay rises or falls every two years in sync with the state’s median household income. This year’s increase would lift lawmakers’ base pay from $58,237 to $61,440, an increase of just over $3,200 a year.

The law requires the governor to determine the change to the household income at the start of each two-year legislative session, which for the 2009-2010 session was Wednesday, leading to the announcement from Gov. Deval Patrick’s office.

Ehrlich said she made the decision to donate her raise due to the current state of the economy.

“With about 6 percent of Massachusetts residents unemployed, and businesses, organizations and families struggling, every little bit helps,” said Ehrlich. “Instead of turning down the raise and sending it back to the state’s general fund, I would prefer to put that money back to work in my district by supporting the organizations that feed, educate and care for those who are struggling during this time of financial difficulty.”

Ehrlich, who represents Marblehead, Swampscott and a part of Lynn, is donating to groups that have a direct impact on her district. The $3,200 will be split among the Marblehead Food Pantry, Swampscott Food Pantry, My Brother’s Table, Friends of Lynn and Nahant Beach, Aging in Place-Lynn, Marblehead Council on Aging, Swampscott Council on Aging, Friends of the Marblehead Public Schools and Swampscott Public Schools revolving fund.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

DOMA Rally Scheduled in Boston Saturday Jan. 10, 2009

Join The Impact MA, Inc.

Is Proud to Sponsor Boston’s Participation
In the Nationwide Join The Impact

Saturday, January 10, 2009
1:30 PM
Boston City Hall Plaza (North Side)
With March to Indoor Location at Emerson College

Endorsed by

Greater Boston Civil Rights Coalition
Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders
Mass Equality
Mass Trans Political Coalition
Guerilla Queer Bar
Young Democrats of Mass.
The Progressive Project
National Lawyers Guild
(partial listing)

Governor Patrick Asks Legislature for Expanded Budget AUTHORITY

Additional authority allows the Governor to distribute up to $1 billion in cuts more equitably across state government

BOSTON – Wednesday, January 7, 2009 – Facing a likely additional $1 billion budget gap this year, Governor Deval Patrick today filed legislation requesting expanded budget-cutting authority in order to avoid disproportionate cuts to programs and services residents rely on most during challenging economic times.

“A budget gap of the magnitude we face will require tough choices that impact individuals, families and businesses across the Commonwealth,” said Governor Patrick. “It’s necessary for us to have everything on the table when making these decisions.”

The expanded 9C power will give the Governor emergency budget authority over agencies outside of the Executive Branch – including the Legislature, the Judiciary, District Attorneys, Sheriffs, and other Constitutional Officers – and local aid.

Without 9C authority, the Governor’s budget cutting powers are limited to Executive Branch agencies. In October, with revenues sharply declining, the Governor issued $1.4 billion in cuts and spending controls. At that time, many Constitutional Officers and departments outside the Executive Branch voluntarily offered to reduce their budgets.