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Baker signs bill to crack down on fentanyl trafficking

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

BOSTON — A law signed Tuesday by Gov. Charlie Baker makes trafficking of fentanyl, a powerful synthetic drug sometimes mixed with heroin, a crime punishable by up to 20 years in prison. The Legislature approved the bill as one response to an opioid abuse epidemic that claimed an estimated 1,250 deaths in Massachusetts last year, almost triple the number from five years ago. The measure is intended to close a …

Brandeis students occupy administration building for diversity demands

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

WALTHAM (AP) — Hundreds of Brandeis University students have occupied the school’s administration building and say they won’t leave until officials address their demands regarding diversity. A group of students called #ConcernedStudents2015 began occupying the Bernstein-Marcus Administrative Center on Friday after they say interim president Lisa Lynch failed to address 13 concerns about racial equality outlined in a letter sent to her on …

Baker: State will continue to support refugees

Monday, November 23, 2015

BOSTON — Gov. Charlie Baker said Monday that Massachusetts will continue to support refugee resettlement, even as the debate over the U.S. role in sheltering some refugees fleeing Syria continues to roil political debate in the country. Offering shelter to refugees is part of Massachusetts’ history, Baker told reporters Monday. “I don’t intend …

Baker: Opioid bill designed to ‘disrupt the status quo’

Monday, November 16, 2015

BOSTON — Gov. Charlie Baker is acknowledging his opioid abuse bill likely won’t reach his desk until sometime early in 2016. But Baker said Monday he hopes lawmakers will continue to work on the legislation even after formal sessions end this week so they can get the measure …

Baker aims to ‘set bar really high’

Monday, November 16, 2015

BOSTON — Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker says he’s opposed to allowing Syrian refugees into the state in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks in Paris. The Republican said Monday the safety of Massachusetts residents is his first priority. He said he would have to know a lot more …

Boston rallies for Paris

Monday, November 16, 2015

BOSTON — A crowd in Boston waved French flags and consoled each other Sunday during a rally supporting the people of Paris in the aftermath of attacks there that killed 129 people and wounded more than 350. A …

State’s leading Democrats lining up behind Clinton

Sunday, November 15, 2015

BOSTON — Hillary Rodham Clinton is picking up strong support among top Democrats in Massachusetts, while fellow Democratic presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders of neighboring Vermont has failed to catch fire among the party higher-ups. The Associated Press attempted to contact all 25 of the state’s Democratic superdelegates to …

New England, Quebec officials urge hydropower push

Saturday, November 14, 2015

BOSTON — Quebec and New England officials called Friday for stepped up efforts to deliver hydropower across the U.S.-Canada border to the six-state region, arguing it would lower energy costs and help tackle climate change. Philippe Couillard, the …

As AG reviews fantasy sports, Governor Baker says its a game of skill

Thursday, November 12, 2015

BOSTON — Gov. Charlie Baker says he does not consider daily fantasy sports to be a form of gambling. The Republican, responding to a reporter’s question, said he believes it’s a game of skill. He says he played a free game online to get a sense of what …

US counter extremism program debates European efforts

Thursday, November 12, 2015

BOSTON — Organizers of a federal pilot program designed to root out homegrown extremists are looking to lessons learned in Europe, where government programs to confront radicalization have been in place for years but continue to generate debate. …

State announces new mortgage loan program for veterans

Thursday, November 12, 2015

BOSTON (AP) — Massachusetts has taken the wraps off a mortgage program that Gov. Charlie Baker says will make it easier for veterans to purchase their first homes. Baker announced the “Operation Welcome Home” loan program on Wednesday as Veterans Day was commemorated with parades and other observances …

‘Woodland partnership’ would offer financial and technical assistance for forest-based economic development

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Eleven western Franklin County towns could get an economic boost with state and federal grants to help preserve woodlands, manage timber, boost tourism and forestry industries — including wood-pellet manufacturing to heat town-owned buildings, according to a new …

Springfield slaying victim identified as delivery driver

Monday, November 9, 2015

SPRINGFIELD — Police say the victim of a fatal weekend shooting in Springfield was delivering food for a city restaurant when he was killed. Police on Monday identified the victim of the Saturday night shooting as 40-year-old Fan Cheung Li. Li was found on a street in the …