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

“Whoever you are, you’re one of us.”

Forry-Dorcena families at St. Patrick's Day Breakfast: The group gathered for a photo after the event. Photo © Don WestForry-Dorcena families at St. Patrick's Day Breakfast: The group gathered for a photo after the event. Photo © Don West

I don’t typically write about events involving my wife, state Sen. Linda Dorcena Forry. But Sunday’s St. Patrick’s Day Breakfast in South Boston, it seems to me, merits some comment from this space.

I’ll leave it to other journalists – those unencumbered by a certificate of marriage – to weigh in on my spouse’s performance. Instead, here are some observations from the “green room” offered up in the spirit of historic preservation.  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

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

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

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

Garrison suing state elections chief for ballot access in Henriquez seat race

Gintautas Dumcius, News Editor
Mar. 6, 2014

Althea Garrison, a frequent candidate for public office, is suing state elections chief Bill Galvin, claiming she should be on the Democratic primary ballot in the special election to replace former state Rep. Carlos Henriquez.  Read more

Dan Hunt wins primary vote to succeed Walsh in House

Gintautas Dumcius and Mike Deehan
Mar. 4, 2014

Dan Hunt celebrated his primary election victory on Tuesday, March 4 with supporters at Phillips Old Colony House. Photo by Mike Deehan

This post was updated at 3:06 p.m. on Wednesday with the latest version of the story.

Dan Hunt will be the next representative for the 13th Suffolk House District. The former State House aide and Department of Conservation and Recreation staff member won a decisive victory in Tuesday’s special primary, besting four other Democrats in an election that drew a sparse turnout to the polls.

With no Republicans on the ballot on Tuesday, a Hunt win in the April 1 general election is a foregone conclusion.  Read more

WHERE THEY WILL BE: Walsh seat candidates on Primary Election Night

Polls open at 7 a.m. and close at 8 p.m. Five Democrats are on the ballot in the primary to replace Marty Walsh at the State House. Listed below are the locations of their election night parties.  Read more

Walsh seat candidates appear on BNN

Reporter Staff
Feb. 28, 2014

The five candidates hoping to replace Marty Walsh in the State House talked public safety and education during individual appearances on BNN News.

BNN's Chris Lovett interviewed them in the videos below. The Democratic primary is March 4, and with no Republicans running, the election is expected to be determinative of who will take the 13th Suffolk seat after the April 1 general election.  Read more