The Landscape

All eyes, ears and Zooms will be focused on Chairman Aaron Michlewitz as he leads the $47.65 billion dollar House Ways and Means fiscal year 2022 budget debate this week. In years past, members would advocate for their amendments in person with the Chairman at designated times based on consolidated amendment topics. This year, those meetings will be held virtually. Amendments that would reconstruct the budget’s revenue base will be taken up first and then the House will proceed with consolidated amendments based on policy subjects. Over 1,100 amendments were filed for consideration this year. Speaker Ron Mariano’s office is urging lawmakers to participate remotely during debate which is scheduled tentatively for Monday through Wednesday with roll calls beginning at 11:00 a.m. 

The Joint Committee on Revenue meets Monday afternoon to discuss four possible constitutional amendments including petitions on agricultural and horticultural land taxation and “The Millionaires Tax.” Only written testimony will be accepted. The Joint Committee on Judiciary will meet virtually this afternoon regarding a proposed constitutional amendment for appointment terms of constitutional officers. Registration is required to participate. On Tuesday, the Joint Committee on Health Care Finance will hear a petition by request to change the state Constitution that would give all residents “the right to health care.” Advanced registration is required.

Middle school students and staff are expected to make a full return to classrooms this week to comply with Commissioner Jeff Riley’s ruling last month that dictates the amount of time students are required to learn in a physical classroom. While the majority of middle schools began to phase out remote learning after last month’s guidance, there remains no deadline for high school students to return to their classrooms.

The News


Man’s best friend(s): Here’s the story behind the dogs posing on the Longfellow bridge.