By Bob Katzen


“Body-worn camera programs also provide law enforcement agencies with an important tool to improve training and advance best practices. This grant program and the resulting implementation of advanced technology will improve safety for police and communities across the commonwealth,”
—Public Safety and Security Secretary Terrence Reidy announcing that the Baker administration awarded more than $4 million in state grant funds to 64 municipalities across the state to provide departments with resources to start or expand Body-Worn Camera programs.

“The Department of Public Health has a long history of smoking cessation programs aimed at reducing access to and the influence of tobacco and vaping products in our communities. Making the decision to quit smoking can be overwhelming. This program provides a pathway of support and resources for residents who want to stop using tobacco and nicotine products. It’s never too late to quit.”
—Acting Public Health Commissioner Margret Cooke announcing the launch of Take the First Step, a campaign to help adults quit smoking, vaping or using other tobacco or nicotine products. For more information call the Massachusetts Quitline (1-800-QUIT-NOW) or visit http://www.mass.gov/quitting

“For everything there is a season. For this campaign, that season has come to a close. Today, I am formally ending my bid to become the next governor of Massachusetts.”
— Former Democrat state senator Ben Downing announcing his withdrawal from the 2022 gubernatorial race.

“We are working with our state partners and as soon as we’re able to access more rapid tests from them, we will order as many as we can get our hands on and distribute them in a way that we think is equitable across the city.”
— Boston Public Health Commission Executive Director Dr. Bisola Ojikutu on plans to open three additional testing sites in Boston by mid-January as demand for COVID-19 tests soars.

HOW LONG WAS LAST WEEK’S SESSION? Beacon Hill Roll Call tracks the length of time that the House and Senate were in session each week. Many legislators say that legislative sessions are only one aspect of the Legislature’s job and that a lot of important work is done outside of the House and Senate chambers. They note that their jobs also involve committee work, research, constituent work and other matters that are important to their districts. Critics say that the Legislature does not meet regularly or long enough to debate and vote in public view on the thousands of pieces of legislation that have been filed. They note that the infrequency and brief length of sessions are misguided and lead to irresponsible late-night sessions and a mad rush to act on dozens of bills in the days immediately preceding the end of an annual session.

During the week of December 27-31, the House met for a total of 29 minutes and the Senate met for a total of 37 minutes… .

Mon. Dec. 27 House 11:04 a.m. to 11:27 a.m.
Senate 11:05 a.m. to 11:28 a.m.

Tues. Dec. 28 No House session
No Senate session

Wed. Dec. 29 No House session
No Senate session

Thurs. Dec. 30 House 11:01 a.m. to 11:07 a.m.
Senate 11:13 a.m. to 11:27 a.m.

Fri. Dec. 31 No House session
No Senate session

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