Commonwealth Conversations

Earlier this year, the Massachusetts Senate embarked on a statewide listening tour with the goal of bringing government to the people and fostering civic engagement. Throughout the nine stop tour, my colleagues and I gathered input from thousands of constituents on the issues most important to them and their communities.

While this session’s central theme was improving our public transportation system, there was much discussion on topics ranging from combating climate change to ensuring expanded access to early education for working families.

These individual conversations were vital to our efforts in crafting a bipartisan legislative agenda that represents every one of our residents, while also addressing the needs of every community in Massachusetts.

While each of us in the Senate is keenly aware of the goings on throughout the state, it is always nice to gain some additional perspective by engaging with communities outside of our own districts. That is why I was happy to host a town hall forum at the UMass Lowell, where residents of the Merrimack Valley were able to share their viewpoints with senators from other regions of the state.

The Commonwealth Conversations tour was a wild success and the Senate has been hard at work this session to work towards making your input a reality.

If you would like to learn more about our statewide tour or get a better look at the conversations that were had, the full report can be found here.

Clean Energy Tour

Massachusetts has a proud history of environmental activism. We continue to work to reduce our carbon footprint to mitigate the adverse effects of climate change on future generations. The hurricanes that ravaged Florida and Texas remind us that these issues should lie beyond politics given their increasing impacts on people.

Since May, the Senate Committee on Global Warming and Climate Change has held hearings throughout the Commonwealth to get input on pressing issues in clean energy and climate and to help the legislature determine the next steps that the Commonwealth should take to keep Massachusetts healthy, sustainable and strong.

On September 25 at Groton-Dunstable Regional High School, I hosted a spirited public forum on climate change featuring State Senator Marc Pacheco and State Representative Sheila Harrington. We heard thoughtful suggestions from constituents that will help drive our legislative agenda. Thanks to all who turned out for the discussion on this critical topic.