Double Dutch champ Sharrice Perkins remembered in memorial tournament

Will Taylor, Special to the Reporter
Mar. 27, 2014

Sharrice Perkins, one of three victims in a horrific 2012 shooting on Harlem Street, was remembered last Saturday at a Double Dutch tournament in Roxbury, an event at which Perkins would have felt quite at home. Perkins was a state championship jumper herself, traveling with her team to the worlds championship competition as a middle and high-school student.

Perkins was just 22 when her life was taken in a parked car. Two other women—Kristen Lartey and Genevieve Philip— were also shot dead and a fourth woman was left wounded. The case remains unsolved.  Read more

Katie’s Quest: Support mounts to help Galway’s O’Halloran

Jordan Frias, Special to the Reporter
Mar. 27, 2014

Katie O'HalloranKatie O'HalloranA correction has been appended to the article.

“They say the closest city to Galway is Boston,” said Rosario Sullivan of Ireland.

Sullivan was present at Mayor Marty Walsh’s Community Luncheon in West Roxbury at the Irish Social Club of Boston on Saturday, passing out fliers and talking to guests about her friend Katie O’ Halloran.

Sullivan has been in Boston for almost two weeks to help spread the word about the Katie O’Halloran Benefit that will be held here in Boston.  Read more

Man acquitted for murder of Irish immigrant after Irish festival in 2011

A Suffolk Superior Court jury today acquitted John Graham, 19, of Lynn on a charge of first-degree murder for the death of Ciaran Conneely following the annual Irish festival in Adams Corner on Oct. 10, 2011, the Suffolk County District Attorney's office reports.

Prosecutors had charged Graham killed Conneely in a robbery attempt on Nahant Avenue.  Read more

House breathes new life into charter school bill

Colleen Quinn, State House News Service
Mar. 26, 2014

House lawmakers on Wednesday resurrected legislation that would lift the cap on charter school enrollment in underperforming school districts, adopting a new version of the bill after the Education Committee failed to agree on a proposal.

During a lightly attended session Wednesday morning, the House adopted a plan offered by Education Committee Co-chair Rep. Alice Peisch that allows more charter schools without addressing increases in reimbursements to traditional public schools that some lawmakers and advocates have demanded.  Read more

Reporter's Notebook: Golar Richie mulls run for statewide office — but is time on her side?

Gintautas Dumcius, News Editor
Mar. 26, 2014

“Charlotte for Mayor” didn’t work out. Could “Charlotte for Treasurer” or "Charlotte for Lt. Governor" happen any differently?  Read more

Bid for compromise on charter school cap falls short

Gintautas Dumcius, News Editor
Mar. 26, 2014

State Sen. Sonia Chang-Diaz and state Rep. Russell Holmes, two lawmakers who represent parts of Dorchester and Mattapan, were unsuccessful this week in pushing a compromise that would lift the cap on charter schools.

Chang-Diaz’s office announced the compromise on Saturday, days after the Education Committee had given itself a one-week extension to March 25 to put together a bill. But March 25 came and went with no action on legislation.  Read more

Two fires displace 16

Deering Road fire

Ladder 29 extended to the roof at 44 Deering Rd. Photo by BFD.

A two-alarm fire on Deering Road in Mattapan and a smaller fire on Talbot Avenue in Dorchester Tuesday night and early Wednesday displaced 14 people, according to the Boston Fire Department.

Firefighters responded around 9:10 p.m. to 44 Deering Rd., where a fire that started on the second floor spread to the walls and ceiling on the third floor.

The department says there were no injuries from what turned into a two-alarm fire. Damage was estimated at $300,000. The cause remains under investigation.  Read more

Letter: Blasi's Cafe made Team MR8 fundraiser a success

Suzanne (Morrison) McDevitt
Mar. 25, 2014

John Hanlon and Suzanne (Morrison) McDevitt, two members of the Team MR8 Boston Marathon team, who organized a fundraiser at Blasi's on March 16.

To the Editor:

I just wanted to send a warm thank-you to Blasi’s Cafe in Adams Corner for hosting the TEAM MR8 St. Patrick’s Day fundraiser on March 16th, organized by John Hanlon and myself.

Blasi’s was kind enough to open the entire restaurant to our guests that Sunday evening where they enjoyed the live Irish music of the talented Henry Brothers and were able to bid on multiple raffle items donated by many generous friends, family members and establishments from near and far. Blasi’s also contributed all of the delicious appetizers served that night.  Read more

Report: Agent acted in self-defense in shooting of Todashev

Michael P. Norton, State House News Service
Mar. 25, 2014

The FBI agent who shot and killed Ibragim Todashev in his Orlando residence in May 2013 acted in self-defense, according to an investigation by Florida State Attorney Jeff Ashton, who concluded there was no evidence that the agent committed “intentional misconduct or acted with any degree of malice.”  Read more

Chang-Diaz: Charter school compromise reached ahead of deadline

Gintautas Dumcius, News Editor
Mar. 22, 2014

Lawmakers have reached a compromise on lifting the cap on charter schools, state Sen. Sonia Chang-Diaz's office said Saturday.

Chang-Diaz co-chairs the Legislature's Education Committee, which had given itself a one-week extension to March 25 in order to kick out a bill on the charter school cap. Chang-Diaz, a Jamaica Plain Democrat, had come under pressure from charter school advocates to move the legislation out of committee.  Read more

BPL exhibit maps changing face of the city’s neighborhoods

David Eisenstadt
Mar. 20, 2014

Vietnamese population mapVietnamese population mapFrom Irish, Jews, and Italians to Vietnamese, Haitians and Cape Verdeans, a new map exhibition covering the past 100 years shows Boston’s changing population. “City of Neighborhoods: The Changing Face of Boston” opens Saturday, March 22, at the Norman B. Leventhal Map Center at the Boston Public Library in Copley Square.

“The original inspiration was all of this great data that came out of the 2010 census,” said Michelle LeBlanc, director of education at the Leventhal Map Center and co-curator of the show. “It told us about what has been going on with population and demographics, and being the map center we wanted to show this through maps.”

As researchers pulled the information together, it was clear that each neighborhood had its own story within the larger picture of the city of Boston, LeBlanc said.  Read more

Reporter's Notebook: More time for talk on charter school cap issue

The debate over lifting the charter school cap will stretch into next week as the Legislature’s Education Committee continues to seek a compromise. Charter school advocates have ratcheted up pressure on lawmakers, including state Sen. Sonia Chang-Diaz, co-chair of the Committee on Education, calling on them to release a bill lifting the cap. Separately, public school parents who oppose charter schools sent a petition to the committee this week, demanding that the cap stay in place.

In a meeting at the State House on Tuesday, the committee gave itself an extension to kick out a bill.  Read more

Violins make a connection at Elder Service Plan center

Jordan Frias, Special to the Reporter
Mar. 20, 2014

Elizabeth Moody, left, and Dr. Bernice Wong play together at the Elder Service Plan on Morton Street.

At age 66, Elizabeth Moody said a prayer that she would be able to play the violin again. And that prayer was answered, in large part by her violin teacher, Dr. Bernice Wong, medical director at the Elder Service Plan center on Morton Street.  Read more

Public asked to weigh in on Mt. Vernon Street revamp

The Boston Redevelopment Authority is asking Dorchester residents to help redesign Columbia Point’s Mt. Vernon Street. The city planning agency has set a meeting for next Thursday, March 27 at 6 p.m., inside the Corcoran Jennison Community Building at 270 Mt. Vernon St.  Read more

St. Patrick's Day Breakfast serves up laughs, leaders

Gintautas Dumcius, News Editor
Mar. 19, 2014

Sen. Forry with Governor Patrick: The governor quipped: “Have a good look everybody. This is what a Forry and a Patrick looks like these days." Photo © Don WestSen. Forry with Governor Patrick: The governor quipped: “Have a good look everybody. This is what a Forry and a Patrick looks like these days." Photo © Don WestLinda Dorcena Forry took the microphone on Sunday morning and looked out into the crowd at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center where some 700 residents from Dorchester, South Boston, and Mattapan were dining on eggs, hash, and sausages.

“Last year I got eight seconds,” she quipped.

This year, it was two hours and a half. She is the First Suffolk District’s state senator now, instead of a candidate, and with the position comes the job of hosting the annual St. Patrick’s Day breakfast, where politicians traditionally have traded light barbs with one another.  Read more

Boston pols see liquor law as key in livening up neighborhoods

Andy Metzger, State House News Service
Mar. 18, 2014

Chris Douglass, of Ashmont Grill; Karen Henry-Garrett, of Dot 2 Dot Café; and Donnel Singleton, a Roxbury businessman, testified in favor of a bill to give Boston more control over liquor licensing. Photo by Mike Deehan, State House News Service

Boston pols and business people seeking to wrest control of restaurant liquor licensing from state lawmakers and a governor-appointed board told a legislative committee Tuesday that some neighborhoods are starved for nightlife.  Read more

Car hit with hail of gunfire near Ronan Park

Reporter Staff
Mar. 17, 2014

A mid-afternoon shooting erupted across from the entrance of Ronan Park on Monday, according to neighbors. Six to nine shots were fired at a car around 4 p.m. on Mt. Ida Road. The targeted vehicle, a black sedan, crashed into two parked cars. The broad-daylight incident drew a swift and massive police response.

Two people who were in the car jumped out and ran off, leaving behind a person in the crashed car, neighbors said. The person, a female, appeared to be shaken but uninjured, according to one neighbor who spoke to the Reporter.  Read more

Mayor Walsh skips South Boston parade after fruitless negotiations

Gintautas Dumcius
Mar. 16, 2014

The long back-and-forth over whether an advocacy group for equality can march in the South Boston St. Patrick’s Day parade is over, at least for this year. Mayor Marty Walsh did not march, though he kept the door open until the last minute, hoping that parade organizers and the group, MassEquality, could come to an agreement on whether gay veterans could openly march.  Read more

Pols yuk it up at Southie St. Patrick's Day breakfast

Michael P. Norton, State House News Service
Mar. 16, 2014

State Senator Linda Dorcena Forry took center stage at Sunday's event in South Boston. Photo by Chris Lovett

The state’s political elite paused for a group selfie, turned the probation department hiring scandal into a laugh line, and took pokes at Republicans Charlie Baker and Scott Brown during the annual St. Patrick’s Day political breakfast Sunday morning.

Sen. Linda Dorcena Forry opened the proceedings at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center by dedicating the event to former Boston Mayor Thomas Menino, urging participants to make him laugh amid reports over the weekend that he’s battling advanced form of cancer.  Read more

Woman indicted for hit and run that killed seven year old; faces 20 years in prison

A Suffolk County grand jury has indicted Olivia Mora, 36, for manslaughter for the death of Briana Rosales, 7, on an Olney Street sidewalk last November.  Read more

School finance issues influence debate on charter cap lift

Matt Murphy, State House News Service
Mar. 13, 2014

With the press on from charter school advocates to lift or eliminate the cap on charter enrollment in poorly performing school districts, the battle brewing over the issue in the Legislature appears to have as much, if not more, to do with the distribution of state education aid than the merits of charter schools.  Read more

MBTA gears up for March 28 launch of late-night service pilot

Andy Metzger, State House News Service
Mar. 13, 2014

MBTA weekend service into the wee hours will start March 28, the Patrick administration plans to announce at a Cambridge subway station Thursday.  Read more

Condos planned for infamous Savin Hill Ave. “hole”

An architect’s rendering depicts a proposed condominium project above and next to Savin Bar & Kitchen on Savin Hill Avenue. Image courtesy RODE Architects Inc.An architect’s rendering depicts a proposed condominium project above and next to Savin Bar & Kitchen on Savin Hill Avenue. Image courtesy RODE Architects Inc.

Developers behind a proposal to build condominiums on top of the Savin Bar & Kitchen and a long-vacant plot of land next door explained some details of the plan on Tuesday night. In an appearance before the Columbia Savin Hill Civic Association’s planning committee, the developers and their architects discussed the transit-orientated proposal for 14 units of housing, which would be located directly across from the Savin Hill MBTA station. There would be space for retail on the first level.  Read more

Race heats up for Fifth Suffolk state rep’s seat; Garrison lawsuit over ballot is tossed out

One special primary election down, one more to go.

Dorchester voters have gone to the polls eight times in the last 12 months, including last week, when they picked former State House aide Dan Hunt as Marty Walsh’s successor in a five-way Democratic primary.

The next one is set for April 1, with five Democrats competing to replace former state Rep. Carlos Henriquez, who was ousted from his Fifth Suffolk seat in February by an overwhelming majority of his House colleagues.  Read more

Reporter's Notebook | Gov hopeful Berwick: Voters ready for a ‘new progressivism’

Don Berwick stays away from caffeine.

“Decaf, please,” he reminds a waitress at McKenna’s in Savin Hill, as she goes to refill his cup.

He got off caffeine just before he moved to Washington, D.C. He had a headache for three or four months. And then, it “changed my life.”

“I didn’t like the stimulation all the time,” he says.

On the campaign trail, stimulation can seem like a necessity. The days are long, a never-ending schedule of greeting voters and phoning donors.

No wonder campaigns run on Dunkin’, or a reasonable facsimile. But Berwick does not.  Read more