Category Archives: Issues

Ballot Questions Chapter 40b Tax Cuts

Ballot Questions for 2010 Massachusetts State Election: Arguments For and Against

There are three questions on the Massachusetts 2010 Election ballot.  They are:

Question 1: Repeal the sales tax on alcoholic beverages

Question 2: Repeal chapter 40b

Question 3: Cut the sales tax from 6.25% to 3%

If any of these questions passed the legislature would be required to pass these questions into law. For each question we list the exact text of the ballot initiative, an issue summary, and the arguments of those for and against the question, as well as the issue groups supporting or opposing each question.

Like most ballot initiatives, the sides for and against will try to make their organizations look like grass roots popular movements. But they are often funded by powerful industry lobbies that have an interest in the outcome. We will detail those connections as well.

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Budget Naughton Gettens

James Gettens, 12th Worcester Representative Candidate – Position of State Budget

Jim Gettens

BLOATED STATE PAYROLLS, PERKS, PENSIONS, AND PROGRAMS

In 2008-2009, while approximately 109,000 Massachusetts private sector workers lost their jobs, and many thousands more suffered pay and benefit cuts, our reckless and irresponsible INCUMBENT legislators and governor added a net 2000 ‘on-budget’ state employees, bringing the total to 98,000, as reported by the Boston Globe. The ‘on-budget’ state payroll now totals approximately $4.5 billion annually. These figures do not include the many thousands of ‘off-budget’ state employees in the various so-called ‘independent state authorities,’ such as the MBTA, MWRA, and new Transportation Authority, we taxpayers also bail out. All of these so-called ‘public servants’ enjoy perks and pension benefits unheard of in ‘the dreaded private sector.’ It is time to end this legislatively constructed, taxpayer funded, class system. Wasteful state payrolls, perks, pensions and programs must be gutted and eliminated to free up more money for local aid and education and to reduce the taxes and fees extracted from ordinary, hard-working, Massachusetts citizens and taxpayers.

Naughton Gettens Tax Cuts

James Gettens, 12th Worcester Representative Candidate – Position on Taxes

I oppose the new and increased taxes and fees implemented in August, 2009, to feed bloated state payrolls, perks, pensions and programs. These were passed by irresponsible and reckless INCUMBENT LEGISLATORS, including my opponent; and a GOVERNOR, wholly owned by public employee unions, expanding an unresponsive, burgeoning state government at the expense of ordinary citizens and taxpayers. These craven legislators and governor, unwilling to face down greedy public employee unions, added a net 2000 ‘on-budget’ state employees in 2008-2009, and then cut local aid and outreach programs across Massachusetts by a total of $456 MILLION. That shows us who these INCUMBENTS really answer to and to whom they are beholden.

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Ballot Questions Casinos and Slots Tax Cuts

Question 3 and Casinos – A missing link

It’s surprising the “Rollback the sales tax” crowd hasn’t hit on an important point in favor of their ballot question, Question 3.

According to a recent report Mohegan Sun casino in Uncasville CT will begin laying off employees. This is due to a decline in business caused by the recession. Massachusetts on the other hand wants to build three casinos.

Where the Question 3 people are missing the boat is they should turn this negative into a positive. Besides the fact the casino industry is not doing well, which in itself is reason to not pass casino legislation, there are other reasons as well, which tie in nicely with the reasons to pass Question 3.

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Alimony Reform Shared Parenting

Fathers & Families: Candidates’ Positions on Shared Parenting and Other Family Court Issues

Tomorrow (Tuesday, September 14), there will be primary elections throughout the state. For the first time in years, many of the races are contested, and a few votes could make the difference between a candidate winning or losing.

I urge all of you to vote tomorrow. Remember that if you are registered as an Independent (also called “Unenrolled”), you may vote in either the Democratic or Republican primary.

We have information on only a few races. Please keep in mind that as a 501(c)(3) non-profit, Fathers and Families does not endorse or oppose any particular candidate.

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Alimony Reform Creem Rudnick

Does Cynthia Creem Have a Conflict of Interest on Alimony Reform?

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The Globe Says Yes – Creem Says No. What are the Facts?

Cynthia Creem is Senate co-chair of the Joint Committee on the Judiciary. In that position she has the power, along with Representative Eugene O’Flaherty, of deciding the Committee’s agenda. That power allows a legislator to essentially block any bill before that committee. If there is a law that either chair doesn’t want to see passed – it doesn’t matter how much support it has – the chair persons can block it.

She is also a practicing divorce attorney. She charges over $400 per hour to represent clients.

She is a partner at her family’s law firm, Stone Stone & Creem. As a founding partner, Sen. Creem has a financial interest in every case handled by a high end law firm with 4 partners. At over $400 per hour, it is likely that almost every case handled by her firm will consider Alimony.

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Clean Elections Governor Jill Stein

Eli Beckerman on Jill Stein: And then there was one.

Jill Stein

As the dust settled on the first televised debate for this year’s gubernatorial contest in Massachusetts, one clear truth emerged. There was one candidate, and only one, who could legitimately be called “the people’s candidate.”While Scott Brown positioned himself as the people’s candidate in his January special election victory, a late surge of campaign cash and get-out-the-vote efforts from Wall Street executives and lobbyists and other special interests surely put his campaign over the top.

Capitalizing on the Democratic Party machine’s condescending sense of entitlement to the late Senator Kennedy’s seat, Brown asserted that it was “the people’s seat”, and rode his truck right into the leadership vacuum that the Democratic Party has helped to create. But Brown’s slick posturing does not make for genuine leadership. And as economic and ecological meltdown continues, that leadership vacuum continues to grow.

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Patronage Jobs Rush Williams Walsh

As the Probation Department Scandal and Inquiry Widens, Rush’s Silence is Deafening

[ed_note]We received this message from the Brad Williams campaign.[/ed_note]
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Mike Rush
Mike Rush

State Representative Rush failed to adequately respond to State Senate candidate Brad Williams’ call for Rush to fully disclose and explain his involvement with the Massachusetts Probation Department scandal as outlined by the Boston Globe Spotlight Team on May 23, 2010. In an article published on May 29, the Boston Globe states, “Rush responded in an e-mail to the Globe, writing, ‘I have no comment.’”

Williams stated that “Rush’s flip response to these serious allegations against him only serve to discredit Rush’s denials of impropriety. In particular, he should respond to allegations from within and outside of the Probation Department that he has used his position on the House Ways and Means Committee to unduly influence the hiring decisions at the Probation Department – or what I called ‘tribal patronage’ in a recent Boston Globe article.” As long as the Probation Department is under investigation, Williams calls on Representative Rush to disclose and disgorge any campaign contributions received from Probation Department employees and their families over his four terms in office.

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Guy Glodis Mary Connaughton Mike Lake Patronage Jobs State Auditor

Mike Lake Calls for Sheriff Guy Glodis to Resign Over his Refusal to Pay Taxes

Suzanne Bump Issues a Statement Condemning Glodis’ Failure to Pay Taxes

Plus a list of Guy Glodis’ “top 10″ other Ethics Problems

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The Globe published an article today about political campaign committees who have failed to pay taxes on earnings from the investments made with campaign money. Most of the candidates (Tim Cahill, Tim Murray, and Martha Coakley), have acknowledged the oversight and said they will pay their taxes immediately.

Guy Glodis’ campaign is also named, but he is taking a very strange position – he claims that it wasn’t an oversight – and he won’t pay.

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Alimony Reform Creem Rudnick Shared Parenting

Cynthia Creem's Campaign Manager Lies About Creem's Record on Family Court Reform

[ed_note]The Globe article has been corrected. Sherry was either misquoted or retracted the statement. The correction isn’t clear about what happened. We don’t have any issue with the Creem campaign’s current statement.[/ed_note]

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Cynthia Creem

Following today’s endorsement of Charles Rudnick by Warren Tolman and George Bachrach, the Globe contacted the Creem Campaign for a reaction.

Toward the end of the article, Mike Sherry, Cynthia Creem’s campaign manager, tells a whopper:

“Sherry said Creem has set up a task force that is going to report back with a proposal to change state child custody and alimony laws, and he said that by this time next year the senator expects consensus legislation will be passed.”

Creem is in a very tough race, with Rudnick probably in the lead. (See the Newton Tab’s online poll). And she finds herself on the defensive about her failure to make progress on two popular family court reform bills for Alimony Reform (H1785) and Shared Parenting (H1400).

Creem has tried to portray her obstructionist record, and the fact that she belatedly organized a lobbyist filled task force to study Alimony Reform as a record of leading on Alimony Reform. And she has parsed her words carefully minimizing her work as a divorce lawyer by saying she only “litigated” a few divorces this year. Anyone with experience in family law knows that only about one case in 20 is litigated. For each case litigated probably 20 were represented.

But her campaign has avoided saying outright untruths – until now.

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