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2nd Essex District

Beverly, Danvers, Peabody, Salem, and Topsfield
Dear Constituent,

Good morning! First, I would like to congratulate the New England Patriots on their unforgettable Super Bowl victory!

While the Patriots season comes to a close, the Legislature just began its two-year legislative session last month. Throughout the entire month of January, my office received countless emails, letters, and phone calls about sponsoring or supporting various pieces of legislation. I want to thank all the constituents and local organizations who took the time to contact my office and express their views. As your legislator, I appreciate your advocacy because it provides me with a better understanding of the important issues affecting the Second Essex District.

In this update you will find the latest news and events from my Senate office, including:
For more information about the items you see below, please feel free to call my office--my staff and I would be happy to speak with you.
                                                                      Thanks for reading,
                                                                      Joan B. Lovely
Connect with me on Facebook & Twitter!
Welcome, Governor Baker!

On January 8th, Governor Baker took the oath of office to become the 72nd Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. I am looking forward to working with Governor Baker, Lieutenant Governor Polito, and the entire administration on the ways we can best serve our constituents. Congratulations!
Committee Assignments

Last week, Senate President Stanley Rosenberg announced committee assignments for the upcoming legislative session. I am pleased to announce that I will serve as Senate Chair of the Joint Committee on State Administration and Regulatory Oversight. The committee reviews all matters concerning competitive bidding on public contracts, public construction, open meeting laws, state regulations, state agencies, and lobbyists’ reporting laws. I will serve on a total of six committees and I have included a complete list of my committee assignments below:
  • Chair, Committee on State Administration & Regulatory Oversight
  • Vice Chair, Committee on Children, Families, & Persons with Disabilities
  • Vice Chair, Committee on Mental Health & Substance Abuse
  • Vice Chair, Committee on Municipalities & Regional Government
  • Committee on Public Health
  • Committee on Tourism, Arts & Cultural Development
Emergency Assistance Housing Legislation

This session I filed two pieces of legislation related to the Department of Housing and Community Development’s (DHCD) emergency assistance housing program and its practice of housing families in hotels and motels across the Commonwealth. The two bills aim to support children, families, and communities affected by the hotel and motel program:

An Act Relative to the Emergency Assistance Housing Program

This bill includes a section to reduce the loss of local motel tax revenues to cities and towns hosting families through the hotel and motel program. Current state law does not require local motel taxes to be paid after a room is rented for 90 days. Since DHCD rents motel rooms across Massachusetts for extended periods of time through the emergency assistance program, this can result in a loss of significant revenue for the host municipalities. This bill would mandate that the state continues to pay the hotel and motel tax to local communities for motel rooms under this program regardless of the length of stay.

An Act Creating the Home Works Program

The Home Works Program would create additional placements at current afterschool and summer programs specifically for children, ages five through fourteen, living in motels. Subject to appropriation, DHCD would help cover the cost of the additional placements, including transporting the
children to and from the out of school time program.
Annual Veterans’ Agents & Legislators Luncheon
Recently, I attended the Annual Veterans’ Agent and Legislators Luncheon at the State House with Rep. Jerry Parisella! During the event, I had the opportunity to speak with Salem Veterans Agent Kim Emerling and Danvers Veterans Agent Peter Mirandi.
North of Boston Tourism Summit

Last week, I spoke at the 9th Annual North of Boston Tourism Summit in Danvers hosted by the North of Boston Convention and Visitors Bureau. The summit brought together a cross-section of businesses, organizations, and public officials, with the goal of continued collaboration and advancing commerce in our region. At the event, I shared my experiences serving on the Committee on Tourism, Arts, & Culture and focused on the state’s tourism industry and how it can help further our local economy here on the North Shore.
Kiwanis Club of Danvers
Early last month, I provided a legislative update to members of the Kiwanis Club of Danvers. I reflected on my first term in the Senate, my work as the Senate Chair of the Mental Health and Substance Abuse Committee, and my goals for the upcoming session. I would like to thank the Kiwanis Club of Danvers for inviting me to speak to its group!
State of the City Addresses

This past month I had the opportunity to attend the state of the city addresses by Mayor Bettencourt in Peabody and Mayor Driscoll in Salem. For Salem, Mayor Driscoll provided information on the gas power plant, the completed MBTA parking garage, and the new senior center. For Peabody, Mayor Bettencourt discussed the progress of the new Higgins Middle School, the ongoing development of downtown Peabody, and the city's financial position. It was great to hear about all the exciting new projects and initiatives taking place in these two communities!
Thank you, Governor Patrick!

On January 7th, Governor Deval Patrick conducted the ceremonial "Lone Walk" from the State House, which symbolizes his return to society as a private citizen. The "Lone Walk" has been a tradition of departing governors since 1884. I would like to thank Governor Patrick for his years of service to the Commonwealth and I wish him the best of luck going forward.
Upcoming Events
February District Hours:
Beverly City Hall, February 6th, 9:00AM-10:00AM
Danvers Town Hall, February 13th, 9:00AM-10:00AM
Peabody City Hall, February 20th, 9:00AM-10:00AM
Salem City Hall, February 27th, 9:00AM-10:00AM
Topsfield Town Library, February 27th, 12:00PM-1:00PM

Please call (617) 722-1410 to schedule an appointment with my office.

Commonwealth Conversations-North Shore

Over the next six weeks, the Senate will be traveling across the Commonwealth holding forums to learn more about the challenges and opportunities facing Massachusetts residents.The daylong listening tour of the North Shore will take place on February 23rd.
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For more information, call (617) 722-1410 or email

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