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Massachusetts Legislature To Begin New Session

The Massachusetts State House

The Massachusetts Legislature will begin a new two year session on Wednesday.  WAMC’s Paul Tuthill reports.

New and returning representatives and senators will take their oaths of office, and will vote to confirm the leadership choices that were settled earlier at closed door caucuses.   Robert Deleo  is  expected to be re-elected House speaker.  Therese Murray will continue as senate president, but it will be her final term under senate rules.  Among the first items of business for the new legislature will be requests from Governor Patrick for help in closing a $540 million dollar budget gap.  Patrick ordered mid fiscal year spending cuts, but he needs the legislature to approve a 1 percent cut in local aid and a $200 million dollar withdrawal from the state’s rainy day fund.

Paul Tuthill is WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief. He’s been covering news, everything from politics and government corruption to natural disasters and the arts, in western Massachusetts since 2007. Before joining WAMC, Paul was a reporter and anchor at WRKO in Boston. He was news director for more than a decade at WTAG in Worcester. Paul has won more than two dozen Associated Press Broadcast Awards. He won an Edward R. Murrow award for reporting on veterans’ healthcare for WAMC in 2011. Born and raised in western New York, Paul did his first radio reporting while he was a student at the University of Rochester.