Declaring it was time to write the next chapter in the history of the Commonwealth, Charlie Baker today became the 72nd governor of Massachusetts. The state also has a new lieutenant governor, an office that had been vacant for the last 19 months.
Baker put his hand on the family bible held by his wife Lauren, with their three children at his side, as State Senate President Stan Rosenberg administered the oath of office. It capped a political comeback for Baker and the return of a Republican to the state’s top elected office.
Massachusetts Governor-elect Charlie Baker will walk into his new office at the Statehouse next week and confront a sizable shortfall in the state budget. The amount of the mid-fiscal year budget deficit is in dispute, and Baker’s options for closing it appear limited.
Baker, a former state budget chief in the Weld administration who stressed his ability to master the complexities of state government during his successful campaign, acknowledges the projected budget gap — whatever the size --- poses an early challenge in his first term.
For eight years, western Massachusetts has enjoyed unprecedented attention from Beacon Hill. But the new year brings a new governor and administration, and some western Massachusetts lawmakers are not too fond of an early move by the governor-elect.
Michael Widmer, a long time Beacon Hill fiscal watchdog will retire early next year. Widmer has run the business-backed Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation for 23 years. The group recently issued a controversial analysis of the state’s budget deficit and an annual report on Massachusetts municipal finances. WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill spoke with Widmer.
Charlie Baker’s first cabinet pick is a Democrat. The Republican Massachusetts governor-elect has named a respected city administrator to be his economic chief.
Governor-elect Charlie Baker Wednesday named Chelsea City Manager Jay Ash to be his administration’s Secretary of Housing and Economic Development. A statement from the transition committee praised Ash as “an accomplished local government official who reflects the administration’s focus on job creation, communities, and bipartisanship.”
Massachusetts Governor-elect Charlie Baker, just three days removed from his close election victory, visited western Massachusetts today. He met privately with the mayor of the region’s largest city, and also with a suburban mayor who had endorsed Baker’s candidacy.
The Republican governor-elect and the Democratic mayor of Springfield dismissed their political differences and stressed their mutual interests in economic development and finding innovative ways to improve the state’s public schools.