Sen. Cindy Creem testifies on gas reform
December 2, 2019
Sen. Cindy Creem, D-Newton, recently joined other legislators and environmental advocates to testify in support of her legislation to reduce gas leaks, improve gas safety and reduce humanity’s carbon footprint by incentivizing the natural gas industry to move towards cleaner energy sources, including geothermal technology.
The fatal gas explosions in the Merrimack Valley one year ago underlined the thousands of leaks throughout the state and pushed advocates to reconsider the natural gas system as a whole. Especially in light of the fact that methane, the primary component of natural gas, is 86 times more potent a greenhouse gas than CO2.
The heating sector also remains one of the largest emissions sources in Massachusetts, yet regulation of this sector has not been addressed as part of Massachusetts’ Global Warming Solutions Act goals, which aim to reduce emissions 80% by 2050.
Creem’s bill, An Act For Utility Transition to Using Renewable Energy or the FUTURE Act, would enact safety reforms to prevent future gas disasters, require transparency from utilities and the Department of Public Utilities alike, and use a Renewable Portfolio Standards model to transition Massachusetts to renewable thermal heating by 2050.
Distracted driving bill on Gov. Baker’s desk
South Coast Today
By Colin A. Young
November 20, 2019
A signature from Gov. Charlie Baker is all that remains required before drivers will be told to put down their cellphones or any other electronic devices while behind the wheel.
The Senate took the final vote necessary to pass the compromise distracted driving bill (H 4203) Wednesday, and as in the House, only one member voted in opposition, saying the bill’s provisions around data collection and racial profiling do not go far enough. The Senate voted 38-1 with Sen. Becca Rausch of Needham casting the lone dissenting vote.
“Nine years ago we banned texting while driving in an effort to curb dangerous and deadly behavior on the road. But we didn’t go far enough and today we rectify that,” Sen. Cindy Creem said.
Newton Democratic City Committee honors local women
September 25, 2019
Sen. Ed Markey, D-Massachusetts, recently joined the Newton Democratic City Committee to honor three women legislators with over 20 years of service: Sen. Cindy Creem, and Reps. Ruth B. Balser and Kay Khan.
Also attending were Massachusetts Treasurer Deb Goldberg, Newton Mayor Ruthanne Fuller, and the former chair of the Democratic National Party Steve Grossman.
Creem, Balser, Khan and Grossman have endorsed Markey for the U.S. Senate.
Massachusetts Senate Unaimously Adopts Flame Retardant Bill
By Susan Petroni
September 20, 2019
The Massachusetts Senate has voted unanimously (38-0) to ban certain toxic chemical flame retardants from children’s products, including toys and nap mats, as well as in upholstered furniture, window dressings, carpeting, and bedding made or sold in the state.
Bill S2338, An Act to protect children, families, and firefighters from harmful flame retardants, introduced by Sen. Cindy Creem (D-Newton), establishes an initial list of 11 chemical flame retardants that would be banned.
2020 State Budget Includes More Than $22.7 Million For Brookline
By Jenna Fisher
July 30, 2019
The state budget includes $22.7 million in aid, and earmarked more than $1.4 million more to go to Brookline’s Steps to Success, Coolidge Corner Theatre, Brookline Center for Community Mental Health, and Security Grants for Non-Profits, according to Brookline State Rep. Tommy Vitolo. Legislators approved the final budget for FY2020 on July 22. Gov. Charlie Baker has until the end of the week to approve or exercise his line-item veto authority over the budget.
In addition to line items such as unrestricted aid and aid in the form of Chapter 70 education funding and Chapter 90 transportation funding, the budget includes earmarks for several Brookline organizations.
Poll: Voters Want Checks On Face Recognition Technology
By Katie Lannan
June 18, 2019
Nearly eight in 10 Massachusetts voters would support a moratorium on government use of face recognition surveillance, according to poll results released Tuesday.
The American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts released the findings to launch its new “Press Pause on Face Surveillance” campaign, which supports a moratorium and aims to build public awareness about civil rights concerns associated with face recognition technology.
“Face and other biometric surveillance technologies give the government unprecedented power to track who we are, where we go, what we do and who we know,” Carol Rose, executive director of the ACLU of Massachusetts, said on a conference call with reporters. “Face surveillance threatens to create a world in which all of us are tracked and identified as we go about our daily lives, whether that means attending a political rally or meeting with our friends, congregating at houses of worship or seeking medical care.”
Legislature approves fee hikes to boost community preservation fund
By Colin A. Young
May 21, 2019
As it kicked off its budget deliberations Tuesday, the Senate followed the House’s lead and voted to raise the fees that are used to fund the popular Community Preservation Act in hopes of making what is supposed to be a state-local partnership more equitable.
The Senate voted 38-2 to increase the recording fees that feed the CPA Trust Fund from $20 to $50 for most documents and from $10 to $25 for municipal lien certificates, a change that the Community Preservation Coalition estimates will provide the trust fund with an infusion of $36 million in new money each year. The House did the same in its budget last month.
“We were fortunate to see the House adopted the $50 increase in their FY20 budget they just passed. Now it’s incumbent on us to do the same thing, so there won’t be any worry in a conference committee,” Sen. Cindy Creem, who sponsored the amendment, said.
Brookline Arts Center To Hold Fifth Annual Art Fundraiser Event
By Press Release Desk
May 2, 2019
The Brookline Arts Center (BAC) is pleased to present our fifth annual ART Off The Wall exhibition and fundraiser. ART Off The Wall features works by artists who support the mission of the BAC. The exhibition culminates in a wonderfully thrilling evening of art, where everyone who holds a Collector’s Ticket has the opportunity to take home a piece of art from the collection.
The exhibition will run April 27-May 11 in conjunction with Brookline Open Studios. The event will be held Saturday, May 11 from 6:30-9:00pm at the BAC, 86 Monmouth Street, Brookline MA, 02446.
Each year, the BAC presents the Berliner Award to one deserving individual. This year, we are thrilled to honor Senator Cynthia Creem in recognition of her deep commitment to our mission and support of our Art and Autism program. Artwork by students in the program will also be on display during the event. The Berliner Award, named after BAC founders Mim and Barney Berliner, serves to recognize individuals who have made outstanding contributions to art and our community and their embodiment of our founders’ vision. Past recipients include Evelyn Berde, Julie S Graham and Karen Moss.
Justice system programs offer life to young adults
South Coast Today
By Colin A, Young
April 9, 2019
A legislative task force studying how young adults are treated by the criminal justice system and the possibility of expanding juvenile court jurisdiction to include offenders younger than 21, heard Monday about two programs already at work to address justice system-involved juveniles and young adults.
Robert Lowe, deputy superintendent of the Cambridge Police Department, walked the Emerging Adults in the Criminal Justice System Task Force through his department’s “safety net collaborative,” a program which seeks to connect with young people in the city to prevent them from becoming involved with the court system and to divert them to make reparations through other programs when they commit non-violent offenses.
“We are averaging between an 82 and 86 percent success rate, in terms of those people we are seeing not come back,” Ryan told the task force, explaining recidivism among the program participants.
The task force, chaired by Rep. Paul Tucker and Sen. Cindy Creem, was created by the law Gov. Charlie Baker signed last April overhauling various elements of the state’s criminal justice system. The group is charged with studying the treatment of individuals aged between 18 to 24 in the courts and correctional system, and evaluating “the advisability, feasibility and impact of changing the age of juvenile court jurisdiction to defendants younger than 21 years of age.”
Sen. Creem, D-Newton, looks ahead to 2019 goals
By Julie M. Cohen
January 3, 2019
As state Sen. Cynthia Stone Creem marks her 20th year serving in the state Senate, she has numerous plans for 2019.
The Newton Democrat, who also represents parts of Brookline and Wellesley, was named majority leader in February 2018. The decision on who will be majority leader in 2019 has yet to be announced.
When advocacy group Progressive Massachusetts gave her an “A-” on its legislative scorecard last year, Creem said, “I was really thrilled.”
The scorecard evaluates legislators based on whether their votes on bills and amendments correspond with Progressive Massachusetts’ position, according to State House News Service.
Sen. Cindy Creem Appointed MA Senate Majority Leader
By Jenna Fisher
February 28, 2018
The state senator who represents Newton, Brookline and Wellesley was appointed Senate Majority Leader Wednesday.
“I’m thrilled. I’m very, very excited. I’m really so happy to work with the senate president She’s a great person and she has a great agenda,” said Sen. Cindy Creem in a phone interview with Patch as the senator was getting ready to board a plane back to Boston.
Sen. Cindy Creem fills the position after the previous majority leader one of the first women in the role, took over the president seat, becoming the first woman to fill that seat, too. A caucus confirmed the president’s pick today, according to a representative at Creem’s office.