NOTICE: - While reasonable efforts have been made to assure the accuracy of the data herein, this is NOT the official version of Senate Journal. It is published to provide information in a timely manner, but has not been proofread against the events of the session for this day. All information obtained from this source should be checked against a proofed copy of the Senate Journal.
JOURNAL OF THE SENATE.
Thursday, August 11, 2011.
Met according to adjournment at eleven o’clock A.M. (Mr. DiDomenico in the Chair) (having been appointed by the President, under authority conferred by Senate Rule 4, to perform the duties of the Chair).
The Chair (Mr. DiDomenico), members, guests and employees then recited the pledge of allegiance to the flag.
Communications were severally received and placed on file:
Communication from the Honorable Bruce E, Tarr, Senate Minority Leader, in compliance with Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 268A (received in the Office of the Clerk of the Senate on Tuesday, August 9, 2011, at twenty-six minutes before five o’clock P.M.);
Communication from the Honorable Bruce E. Tarr, Senate Minority Leader, announcing the appointment of Senator Richard J. Ross to the Special Commission established (pursuant to Section 189 of Chapter 68 of the Acts of 2011) to make an investigation and study of the Commonwealth’s criminal justice system; and
Communication from the Honorable Bruce E. Tarr, Senate Minority Leader, announcing the appointment of Senator Robert L. Hedlund to the Special Commission established (pursuant to Section 175 of Chapter 68 of the Acts of 2011) to make an investigation of home mortgage refinancing assistance to non-delinquent homeowners.
Mr. Hedlund presented a petition (subject to Joint Rule 12) of Robert L. Hedlund, Stephen Kulik, Barry R. Finegold, Chris Walsh and other members of the General Court for legislation to promote craft brewing in Massachusetts;
Referred, under Senate Rule 20, to the committees on Rules of the two branches, acting concurrently.
Reports of Committees.
By Mr. Rodrigues, for the committee on Children, Families and Persons with Disabilities, on petition, a Bill encouraging low-income savings and economic development (Senate, No. 27);
By the same Senator, for the same committee, on petition, a Bill relative to the authority of the disabled persons protection commission pursuant to chapter 19C (Senate No. 39);
By the same Senator, for the same committee, on petition, a Bill promoting financial stability and asset development (Senate, No. 1839); and
By Ms. Clark, for the committee on Public Service, on petition, a Bill relative to the eligibility of David L. Grafton for appointment to the position of firefighter within the Commonwealth (Senate, No. 1281);
Severally read and, under Senate Rule 27, referred to the committee on Ways and Means.
By Mr. Rodrigues, for the committee on Children, Families and Persons with Disabilities, on petition, a Bill relative to the disclosure of information held by the disabled persons protection commission pursuant to General Laws chapter 19C (Senate, No. 38);
Read and, under Senate Rule 26, referred to the committee on Ethics and Rules.
PAPERS FROM THE HOUSE
Messages were severally referred, in concurrence, as follows:
Message from His Excellency the Governor (under Section 8 of Article LXXXIX of the Amendments to the Constitution) recommending legislation relative to validating the actions taken at certain elections held in the town of Abington (House, No. 3664);
To the committee on Election Laws.
Message from His Excellency the Governor (under Section 8 of Article LXXXIX of the Amendments to the Constitution) recommending legislation relative to validating the actions taken at the June 7, 2011 annual town meeting held by the town of North Andover (House, No. 3665);
To the committee on Municipalities and Regional Government.
A Bill establishing a sick leave bank for Michael Jordan, an employee of the Trial Court (House, No. 3446,— on petition),-- was read and, under Senate Rule 27, referred to the committee on Ways and Means.
The following resolutions (having been filed with the Clerk) were severally considered forthwith and adopted, as follows:-
Resolutions (filed by Mr. Kennedy) “recognizing Edward P. ‘Ned’ Kirby for his exemplary service and outstanding contributions to the Commonwealth”; and
Resolutions (filed by Mr. Ross and Ms. Spilka) “honoring the Shea family on the occasion of the dedication of the Shea Family Square in the town of Natick.”
Matters Taken Out of the Orders of the Day.
There being no objection, the following matters were taken out of the Orders of the Day and considered, as follows:
The Senate Bill exempting certain positions in the town of Shrewsbury from civil service law (Senate, No. 1937),-- was read a second time, ordered to a third reading, read a third time and passed to be engrossed.
Sent to the House for concurrence.
The House Bill authorizing the town of Norwood to grant an additional license for the sale of wines and malt beverages (House, No. 973),-- was read a third time and passed to be engrossed, in concurrence.
PAPERS FROM THE HOUSE
The following engrossed bills (the first of which originated in the Senate), having been certified by the Senate Clerk to be rightly and truly prepared for final passage, were severally passed to be enacted and were signed by the Acting President (Mr. DiDomenico) and laid before the Governor for his approbation, to wit:
Exempting Joseph Walklett from the maximum age requirement for appointment as a firefighter in the city of Malden (see Senate, No. 1924); and
Designating a certain bridge in the town of Bolton as the Harold E. Brown Jr. Memorial Bridge (see House, No. 1791).
Petitions were severally referred, in concurrence, as follows, to wit:
Petition (accompanied by bill, House, No. 3669) of William M. Strauss and Michael J. Rodrigues for legislation to preserve public water supplies is Assawompset Pond Complex communities;
Under suspension of Joint Rule 12, to the committee on Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture.
Petition (accompanied by bill, House, No. 3670) of William M. Straus and Michael J. Rodrigues, (by vote of the town) for legislation to require the city of New Bedford to make certain payments to the town of Rochester for the use of water supplied by said town;
Under suspension of Joint Rule 12, to the committee on Municipalities and Regional Government.
Petition (accompanied by bill, House, No. 3671) of Christopher M. Markey that the Division of Capital Asset Management and Maintenance be authorized to release a certain agricultural preservation restriction on land under the control of the Commonwealth and located in the town of Dartmouth;
Under suspension of Joint Rule 12, to the committee on State Administration and Regulatory Oversight.
On motion of Mr. Tarr,--
Ordered, That when the Senate adjourns today, it adjourn to meet again on Monday next at eleven o’clock A.M., and that the Clerk be directed to dispense with the printing of a calendar.
Moment of Silence
At the request of the Chair (Mr. DiDomenico), the members, guests and employees stood in a moment of silence and reflection to the memory of Navy SEAL Kevin Houston.
Adjournment in Memory of Navy SEAL Kevin Houston
The Senator from Plymouth and Barnstable, Ms. Murray, and the Senator from Cape and Islands, Mr. Wolf, move that when the Senate adjourns today it adjourn in memory of Navy SEAL Kevin Houston.
Navy SEAL Kevin Houston was killed in Afghanistan on Saturday, August 6.
Thirty-six years old, Kevin Houston was on his fourth tour of duty in Afghanistan, already the recipient of a Purple Heart, two Bronze Stars, and many other decorations, when the helicopter he was aboard was shot down, reportedly by enemy fire. He was one of 30 American troops who lost their lives in the crash.
A 1994 graduate of Barnstable High School, captain of the football team, handsome, popular, gregarious, fun-loving, since he was a young boy Kevin had said that he would one day become a Navy SEAL. Within a year of graduating high school, he was fulfilling that dream, finishing his SEAL training in 1999. According to press reports, he participated in more than 100 high-risk missions.
In his hometown of Barnstable, Kevin Houston remembered as a fiercely loyal and protective friend, a devoted son, brother, and then husband and father. He also was known for his toughness. The day before his senior prom, Kevin was in a motorcycle accident and suffered a broken back. Instead of being crowned prom king as planned, he was in a hospital bed, friends in tuxedoes and evening gowns coming to visit before their big night. He graduated in a wheel chair, but six months later, passed the arduous physical exam necessary to enlist in the Navy.
Mr. Houston and his family lived in Virginia in recent years. He is survived by his wife Mei Ling, sons Michael and Ethan, daughter Jana, mother Janette Brown, and younger brother Craig.
Our hearts, prayers, and deepest gratitude are with Kevin Houston’s family, as we honor his and their sacrifice.
Accordingly, as a mark of respect to the memory of Navy SEAL Kevin Houston, at six minutes past eleven o’clock A.M., on motion of Mr. Tarr, the Senate adjourned to meet again on Monday next at eleven o’clock A.M.