“The best way to win someone’s trust is to tell the truth; clearly, forcefully, directly” -Stan
An open letter to the residents of the Franklin, Hampshire and Worcester District regarding the proposed Kinder Morgan pipeline project:
July 30, 2014
The Kinder Morgan pipeline proposal that has dominated local media recently is just that – a proposal. Unfortunately, the energy crisis our Commonwealth will face in the coming years is real.
Over the past several months I have participated in many lengthy and thoughtful discussions with a range of energy experts from the private and public sectors, including senior members of environmental organizations and the Patrick administration, in an attempt to understand all of the proposals on the table, including the pipeline and transmission lines from Canada and Maine, and how they might or might not fit into our future energy needs. The goal of these ongoing discussions is to craft viable policies to help our Commonwealth create an energy future that utilizes green and renewable technologies and indigenous sources to the greatest extent possible.
I am an unabashed policy wonk. For those of you who know me personally, that should come as no surprise. One of the things that I have learned is that the state is likely in a position to prevent the Kinder Morgan pipeline from crossing publically-owned protected land in the event that the pipeline proposal is approved by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. All of the members of the Franklin County legislative delegation are united on this.
I don’t have complete answers yet. What I do know is that the situation is complex and fluid, and unless we take appropriate steps in the near term, especially as approximately 8,300 megawatts of power from fossil and nuclear sources will have gone off-line in the New England region in the next six years, representing approximately 25 percent of all our region’s electric power, our residents, our businesses, our schools, our hospitals, our Commonwealth, could see a tripling of energy costs in the foreseeable future. Experts agree that brownouts and blackouts at peak usage times are likely across our region if those approximately 8,300 megawatts are not replaced.
I issued a challenge to the energy experts I’ve been consulting: What do we need to do to be energy self-sufficient, meaning no pipelines, no transmission lines bringing hydro energy from Canada, no wind energy from Maine, utilizing only green and renewable technologies and indigenous sources, and conservation measures? What will it cost and how quickly can it be phased in to meet current and projected usage?
As I said, I don’t have that information yet, but I will share it when I do, and I would like to enlist the commitment of all Massachusetts residents to do their part to make sure that we have the energy we need.
In the meantime, please know this: I do not want a pipeline running through some of the most beautiful areas of Franklin County. Nor do I want our residents and employers to pay exorbitant energy costs or face brownouts or blackouts because of our failure to act.
But saying “no” to a proposal we don’t want is not enough. We have to show that it is unnecessary.
I want the future to be powered by the greenest, most affordable, most sustainable energy possible. That’s what I’m working for.
BOSTON-Massachusetts Senate President Stan Rosenberg and Senator Sal DiDomenico, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Intergovernmental Affairs, today sent a letter to the Massachusetts Congressional delegation expressing their concern over the proposed cuts to the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
The Trump Administration has outlined a budget proposal with a 19% cut to NIH which, combined with other proposed budget cuts and the proposed changes to the Affordable Care Act, would result in a loss of billions of dollars in federal funding to Massachusetts by 2020. These cuts would eviscerate the Massachusetts innovation economy and our healthcare system.
“Massachusetts is a worldwide leader in medical and biotech research. The proposed cuts to NIH will devastate not only our research institutions but also our biotech companies while putting the brakes on innovation and medical breakthroughs,” said Senate President Rosenberg (D-Amherst). “We encourage our delegation to hold the line on these cuts. The Massachusetts Senate stands ready to work with them to prevent these dangerous short-sighted cuts from becoming law.”
Boston, MA –Today Senate President Rosenberg (D-Amherst) announced the “Commonwealth Conversations 2017 Tour,” bringing Beacon Hill back to main street for a second session on Tuesday, March 28. The Commonwealth Conversations Tour, cosponsored by Senate President Stan Rosenberg (D-Amherst), Senator Michael Rodrigues (D-Westport), and Senate Minority Leader Bruce Tarr (D-Gloucester), is a statewide listening tour of each Senator’s district to visit with local residents, businesses, and interest groups to listen directly to their needs and concerns.
“I am honored to continue our Commonwealth Conversations listening tour, which will take the Senate on the road again to where you live and work in cities, towns and neighborhoods across the Commonwealth,” said Senate President Rosenberg. “We must continue to hear directly from the people of the Commonwealth in their communities about their hopes for the future.”
The goal of the tour is to foster more civic engagement while helping each senator learn more about issues outside of their own districts. Each member of the Senate has committed to attending at least two of these sessions outside of their own region that is not an adjoining district to their own. Each day will end in a town hall open to the public for the specific region.
Senate President Stan Rosenberg, D-Amherst, traveled to Washington, D.C. this week to participate in a national arts advocacy event.
Rosenberg is joining Americans for the Arts for their National Arts Action Summit Monday and Tuesday.
The event comes days after President Donald Trump released a budget proposal that would eliminate funding for the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency that provides arts funding throughout the country.
Just days before a long-awaited review of the Massachusetts criminal justice system is set to be released, several Democratic state senators on Thursday detailed their policy proposals for criminal justice reform, which they say will be a major priority this legislative session.
Legislative leaders commissioned the Council of State Governments Justice Center to analyze the state's criminal justice system as it pertains to incarceration, recidivism and supervision. The final report is due out on Tuesday.
Thursday's briefing included Democrats who have all worked on a broad array of reform measures, and are looking beyond the center's proposals.