Regional News

News from the region from New England Public Radio, NPR, and other NPR stations.

'Stop This Shutdown': Federal Workers Rally In Boston

Jan 14, 2019

Since the partial government shutdown, Lilly Simmons, who works with the Environmental Protection Agency, says she’s “been at home, sitting around twiddling my thumbs for a couple of weeks.” But she’d rather be at work.

That’s why she and dozens of other furloughed federal employees rallied in downtown Boston Friday to call for an end to the shutdown, chanting, “We want to work” and “Stop this shutdown.”

Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren told more than 400 people who gathered at Manchester Community College on Saturday that her life experience informs policy goals like lifting the minimum wage, making education more affordable, and increasing inheritance taxes to pay for affordable housing.

Warren argued that the country needs leadership committed to ensuring that what she called "the rules," aren’t tilted to benefit the wealthy and well-connected.

“Rules matter, rules made in Washington matter, and that’s why I’m in this fight, that’s it.”

In Leicester, Massachusetts, Cultivate workers help customers at the counter during the first day of recreational marijuana sales in the state.
Jesse Costa / WBUR

Massachusetts cities and towns are negotiating some big money for marijuana businesses. Some regulators say it's perhaps too much money. 

A box of joints branded as Dogwalkers are sold at Rise, a marijuana medical dispensary in Amherst, Massachusetts.
Nancy Eve Cohen / NEPR

Pittsfield is the latest Massachusetts community to host a recreational marijuana store — and the second in the Berkshires.

An IRS office in western Massachusetts is closed during the shutdown.
Nancy Eve Cohen / NEPR

Two state lawmakers from western Massachusetts, Jo Comerford and Mindy Domb, sent Governor Charlie Baker a letter asking him to provide emergency funding for food banks if the federal shutdown goes on long enough to impact food stamp benefits.