Activists are planning on another run next year at overhauling the state's criminal offender record information system.
Saying the records are sometimes inaccurate, hard-to-read and burdensome for individuals with minor criminal records who are seeking jobs, activists will re-launch their efforts after failing again earlier this year to help individuals remove what they call a "scarlet letter" from their record. Read more
Dec. 23, 2008
In a meeting last week that was insulated from the lenses of TV cameras and newspaper reporters, former State Senator Dianne Wilkerson lashed out at several ministers affiliated with the Black Ministerial Alliance of Greater Boston and the Boston Ten-Point Coalition, essentially accusing them of conspiring to remove her from office. Read more
Dec. 23, 2008
Capitalizing on the political moment, Dorchester's at-large City Councillor Sam Yoon is clamoring for a little more transparency in city government of late, and last week his efforts produced a baby step forward on that. Read more
Dorchester's Charlotte Golar Richie, a top government relations adviser to Gov. Deval Patrick, is leaving the administration to helm Patrick's political operation, according to sources familiar with the change.
A former lawmaker and housing chief in Boston, Richie joined Patrick as senior director of federal, state and community affairs in July 2007, as the administration was recovering from early difficulties. Read more
Council President Maureen Feeney appointed former Chief Magistrate Judge Charles B. Swartwood III this week as an independent fact finder to advise the council on whether District 7 Councillor Chuck Turner is fit to serve on the council.
"He began his work yesterday," said Feeney's chief of staff Justin Holmes. "It isn't to find guilt or innocence, it is a question of qualification." Read more
The news out of Illinois this week that the state's Governor Rod Blagojevich has been charged with multiple counts of corruption is just one more chapter in a seemingly steady stream of public malfeasance allegations against elected officials.
In Boston, local politics are in an upheaval as State Senator Dianne Wilkerson and City Councillor Chuck Turner each face charges of taking bribes. On Tuesday, each was named in an additional conspiracy charge. Read more
Dec. 10, 2008
Boston Mayor Thomas Menino said Tuesday that the capital's loss in a local aid rollback could be as much as $60 million, warning that economic realities could force the city to face the same service cutbacks that have prompted other mayors to stop plowing residential streets.
Accepting instead of bucking House Speaker Salvatore DiMasi's pronouncement Monday that state assistance to cities and towns could drop 10 percent next fiscal year, Menino said, "We as a city have been realizing that might happen." Read more
Complaints from civic leaders about candidate Doug Bennett's bumper stickers - plastered on public equipment all over Dorchester in recent weeks - have resulted in a fine from the city's inspectional services department. This sticker was one of two improperly displayed at the intersection of Columbia Road and Dorchester Ave. this week. Read more
"Not guilty, your honor."
Those words, said firmly and confidently, made up former Sen. Dianne Wilkerson's first public comments since she was ushered out of her Senate office by her sons and family friends, after formally resigning on Nov. 19.
Before an audience in the jury box comprised of visiting prosecutors, judges and defense attorneys from Macedonia, Wilkerson pleaded not guilty during her arraignment on Monday in U.S. District Court in Boston, kicking off what could be a long legal fight for the Roxbury Democrat. Her next court date is Jan. 22. Read more
Hours after he was indicted by federal prosecutors as a co-conspirator in the same bribery case that has ensnared former Sen. Dianne Wilkerson, City Councillor Chuck Turner again denounced U.S. Attorney Michael Sullivan and the media.
Turner, accused of attempted extortion and lying about it, maintained his innocence and said Sullivan, a Republican, was playing a "little game." A member of the Green-Rainbow Party, Turner said, "He didn't know he was going to kick off a movement. We are going to cleanse the soul of America." Read more