Finally: Census Bureau to release local data next week

The U.S. Census Bureau is expected to release data at the local level for Massachusetts next week. The data will be used to redraw the state's Congressional, Governor's Council, and state House and state Senate districts.

The other states also receiving their local data include Maine, Michigan, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, South Carolina, West Virginia, the District of Columbia and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico. For each state, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.  Read more

This week's Reporter: Hit or miss with community centers, Connolly v. BPS and more

Couple of things worth highlighting in this week's Reporter:

-- Stephen Kurkjian, a senior investigative fellow at Watchdog New England, and Northeastern University's Rachel Zarrell and Gal Tziperman Lotan offer up a must-read on the state of the city's community centers.  Read more

Email offers insight into potential timeline for Warren Senate bid

A top adviser to Newton Mayor Setti Warren is looking for young people with campaigns under their belt to potentially staff his U.S. Senate bid. In an email seeking help earlier this month, obtained by the Reporter, political consultant Deborah Shah wrote that she may be staffing up at the end of April for the potential Senate campaign.

Pay may be “limited,” she wrote, but “top performers” will have a shot at staff jobs starting over the summer or right after Labor Day in September.  Read more

Obama gives pep talk at TechBoston Academy: President hails school as model for nation

Pres. Obama: President Obama spoke at TechBoston Academy on Tuesday, March  8, 2011. Photo courtesy BPSPres. Obama: President Obama spoke at TechBoston Academy on Tuesday, March 8, 2011. Photo courtesy BPS
For Archana Ailawadhi, a college counselor at TechBoston Academy in Dorchester, it was all about the numbers when President Barack Obama stopped by the school on Tuesday afternoon.

“The students here come from some tough neighborhoods – am I right?” asked the president. “Yes. And yet the graduation rate is almost 20 points higher than the rest of the city – 20 points higher,” Obama said to applause. “Ninety-four percent of the most recent graduating class went to college. Eighty-five percent of those students were the first in their family to do so. Your math and science scores are consistently higher than other Boston schools, and the attendance rate here is 94 percent.”

Ailawadhi smiled, recalling the moment. “I was overwhelmed,” she said after the speech, as local politicians and students milled around the gymnasium of the former Dorchester High School, still soaking in the pomp and circumstance of a presidential appearance.  Read more

Monahan stepping down from Mass. Dem party post

State House News Service reports that Stacey Monahan, a Dorchester resident, is stepping down from her post as executive director of the Massachusetts Democratic Party. Clare Kelly, who worked on Gov. Deval Patrick's re-election efforts in the field, will take over the job.

Monahan is a former aide to U.S. Rep. Stephen Lynch and she founded the Ashmont-Adams Civic Association in 1999. A former candidate for state representative, she is on the list of folks who have held the ceremonial post of Mayor of Dorchester.

Concerns flood Lower Mills over MWRA pipeline rehab

Lower Mills MWRA map. Click to enlarge.Lower Mills MWRA map. Click to enlarge.

Fasten your seatbelts, Lower Mills residents.

Starting next month and running into November, Washington Street, Adams Street, and River Street are scheduled to be periodically closed as part of a project of rehabbing and replacing a major pipeline that distributes water to the area.  Read more

Dot Day Essay Contest now open to students

Parade GuyParade GuyThe Dorchester Day Parade Committee is seeking students to compete in an annual essay contest that will earn two winners a $500 US Savings Bond. A completed registration form and essay must be postmarked by March 12, 2011 to be considered for a prize. Two prizes will be awarded to the winning essays — one from grades 9-10 and a second from grades 6-8. The winners will be announced at the Dot Day Kickoff dinner on March 24.

Forms can be downloaded here.

RFK grandson slated to speak at St. Patrick's brunch March 19 in Dorchester

The grandson of Robert F. Kennedy is slated to speak at Dorchester's fifth annual St. Patrick's Day brunch.

Joseph P. Kennedy III is an assistant district attorney on Cape Cod whose speech on the Massachusetts State House floor a week after the shootings in Arizona and 50 years after his great-uncle John F. Kennedy gave the "City on a Hill" speech raised eyebrows.  Read more

Imperiled block grants called key factor in local economy

Gintautas Dumcius, News Editor
Feb. 17, 2011

Dave McDonald, a Mattapan-based contractor, gets 75 percent of his business from the city of Boston and has worked on more than 60 housing projects with the help of a block grant program.

But his business is now in danger, he says, with President Obama’s budget axe poised to come down on the federal Community Development Block Grants (CDBG), which also support programs for the homeless, economic development, and human services.  Read more

Malibu ‘splash’ planned as fundraiser for beaches

Rachel Zarrell, Special to the Reporter
Feb. 17, 2011

Instead of dressing up in black and white, fundraisers for the inaugural Cupid Splash benefit for Save the Harbor/Save the Bay will be wearing bows and wings – and maybe even a bathing suit.

Nine beaches across the state will host the costumed dip-and-dash on April 2 , which raises money for their free events and programs, like the near-annual Dorchester Beach Festival. (The event was originally set for Feb. 12, but was postponed this week.)  Read more