Volume 3, Issue 5 | December 4, 2020
Hello everyone,

Now is the time to stay vigilant. The daily COVID-19 infection numbers are as high as we have seen through the pandemic. We need to do our part as individuals to keep our community healthy and safe. Please follow the guidelines. Remember to social distance and to use a mask when leaving your homes.

We continue to work remotely and our office is fully operational. Questions? Need assistance? Please reach out through the main office number, 617-722-2320, or my email, joan.meschino@mahouse.gov. Stay healthy and safe!

Very truly yours, Joan Meschino
#GetBackMass Campaign Launched
The Administration has launched the #GetBackMass campaign to urge promote awareness of public health guidelines that are critical to return to a state of normalcy. You can participate in restoring Massachusetts -- wear a mask, keep your distance, and get tested. You can find more information on each of these actions here.
A Call for COVID-19 Staffing Help at Field Hospitals
Massachusetts has an urgent need for trained professionals at both the Worcester and Lowell locations. Both UMass Memorial Health Care and Lowell General Hospital have established staffing application portals for doctors, RN and nurse practitioners, physician assistants, respiratory therapists, social workers, and other positions. Individuals with clinical training and experience are encouraged to apply by visiting the following sites:

EEA Public Webinar on MA Decarbonization Roadmap
To achieve long-term emission reduction goals within the Commonwealth, the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) is undertaking a planning process to identify cost-effective and equitable strategies to ensure Massachusetts reduces greenhouse gas emissions to net-zero by 2050. The 2050 net-zero emission target is responsive to my bill, originally filed as H3983, and now advancing as part of H4933 An act creating a 2050 roadmap to a clean and thriving Massachusetts.

EEA is hosting a public webinar on Monday, December 7th from 12-1:30pm. Later in the month, EEA will release several reports on pathways to a net-zero emissions future as well as a Clean Energy and Climate Plan for 2030. This webinar is an opportunity to learn about the research process and provide feedback on the state’s outreach plan around policies for 2030.

Legislature Passes FY 21 Budget (H.5164)
On Friday evening, I joined my colleagues in the House and the Senate to pass the $46.2 Billion FY21 budget (H.5164). As Massachusetts continues to cope with the pandemic and economic recovery, the FY21 budget continues to meet the needs of our communities with a commitment to local aid and schools, and support for the vulnerable within our community.

The conferenced budget contains three of my legislative priorities:
  • Increased funding for ecological restoration (line item 2300-0101);
  • Increased funding from FY 20 for library technology (line item 7000-9506);
  • An outside section allowing the committee for public counsel services to provide greater compensation for attorneys in underserved counties (Section 92).

The FY21 budget now moves to the Governor for his final signature.
Save Our Transit!
Thank you! On November 9, the MBTA released an initial service cut plan, which would eliminate the Hingham/Hull ferry, eliminate the 714 Hull, and drastically reduce Greenbush commuter service. Working closely with our local elected officials, we embarked on a grassroots advocacy plan to educate the MBTA about the value of public transit in our community and to the riders. The public engagement has been tremendous. Well done, everyone.

Next Step! Next Monday, December 7, the MBTA will present its final proposal to the FMCB. Again, we ask residents to show support by registering for this meeting to watch the livestream and hear the final proposal.

Watch! Use this link to register. You can also find more details, including the agenda as it becomes available, here.

As always, residents may participate in the meeting by submitting public comments in one of three ways:
  1. Written comment via email to publiccomment@dot.state.ma.us or mailed to the address listed in the agenda.
  2. Voice message comments may be submitted by calling 857-368-1655 and leaving a brief message by 10:00am on Monday, December 7th. No more than 3 minutes.
  3. Real-time comments may be made through telephone conference call; please email publiccomment@dot.state.ma.us by 10:00am on Monday, December 7th to sign up. No more than 3 minutes.
Successful Greenbush Advocacy Day
On Friday morning, state elected officials, local elected officials, and local residents joined together to show support for the Greenbush commuter rail line. The town of Scituate organized a rally at the Greenbush station to advocate for commuters. The rally highlighted BC High students who take the commuter rail to get to school.

Thank you to everyone who turned out in support of another successful event in demonstrating how much the South Shore values public transit services!
Scituate's Cheryl Ann Fishing Vessel Receives Food Security Grant Funding
On November 24, the Administration announced over $4.7 million in grants to address urgent food insecurity as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic under the Food Security Infrastructure Grant Program. Of that, $82,600 is awarded to the Fishing Vessel Cheryl Ann in Scituate for an innovative collaboration. This funding will purchase fish processing equipment for the deck of the Cheryl Ann, a ground-fishing vessel out of Scituate. A portion of the catch will be donated to the Scituate Food Pantry for those in need.
Weekly Office Hours - Virtual

We continue to hold office hours via Zoom! Please call the office at 617-722-2320 or email to reserve a time slot:

  • Monday, December 7, 4-5 PM
  • Monday, December 14, 4-5 PM

To learn more about our constituent services, please visit our website.
Important Links and Resources

  • HandholdMA.org website for parents of school-aged children in Massachusetts concerned about their child's mental health.

  • Massachusetts residents can seek COVID-19 testing through the Stop the Spread Initiative which provides free testing in high-priority locations.

  • DESE's report on the number of positive COVID-19 cases in schools.

  • SafeLink 24/7 Crisis Hotline for Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault: 877-785-2020.

Stay Informed
Visit your town websites to learn the most recent information, local services, and guidance from our municipal officials.

State Resources

Federal Resources
Constituent Questions | 617-722-2320 | Office Contact Information
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