JOURNAL OF THE HOUSE.
Wednesday, December 31, 2003.
 
 
Met according to adjournment, at eleven o’clock A.M., in an Informal Session, with Mr. Demakis of Boston in the Chair (having been appointed by the Speaker, under authority conferred by Rule 5, to perform the duties of the Chair).

Prayer was offered by the Reverend Robert F. Quinn, C.S.P., Chaplain of the House, as follows:
Holy Spirit God, we pause to offer a prayer of thanksgiving and to reflect for a moment on spiritual matters on this new year’s eve. As legislators we ask, once again for Your assistance in our task of analyzing accurately new and emerging legislative issues and policies in the months ahead. Your gift of wisdom enables us to recognize correctly the needs of people and our communities in this changing world of human and spiritual values. Your gift of knowledge also help us to reorganize and adjust our own priorities. In the New Year may our trust in You, Our Creator, increase and aid us in deepening our trust in each other and in our basic institutions which have served us well in the past and will continue to do so in the future.

Grant Your blessings to the Speaker, the members and employees of this House and their families. Amen.

At the request of the Chair (Mr. Demakis), the members, guests and employees joined with him in reciting the pledge of allegiance to the flag.

Resolutions.

The following resolutions (filed with the Clerk) were referred, under Rule 85, to the committee on Rules:
Resolutions (filed by Ms. Blumer of Framingham) congratulating David L. Steakley on receiving the Eagle Award of the Boy Scouts of America;
Resolutions (filed by Mr. Koczera of New Bedford) congratulating Dr. Harold G. Devine on the occasion of his retirement as Superintendent of Acushnet Public Schools;
Resolutions (filed by Mr. Linsky of Natick) congratulating Stephen Holt on receiving the Eagle Award of the Boy Scouts of America;
Resolutions (filed by Ms. Peisch of Wellesley) congratulating Stephanie Geheran on receiving the Gold Award of the Girl Scouts of America;
Resolutions (filed by Ms. Peisch of Wellesley) congratulating Jemma Moore on receiving the Gold Award of the Girl Scouts of America;
Resolutions (filed by Mr. Rush of Boston) congratulating Matthew John Johnson on receiving the Eagle Award of the Boy Scouts of America; and
Resolutions (filed by Mrs. Walrath of Stow) congratulating Jeffrey Robert Hill on receiving the Eagle Award of the Boy Scouts of America;
Mr. Scaccia of Boston, for the committee on Rules, reported, in each instance, that the resolutions ought to be adopted. Under suspension of the rules, in each instance, on motion of Mrs. Teahan of Whitman, the resolutions (reported by the committee on Bills in the Third Reading to be correctly drawn) were considered forthwith; and they were adopted.

Order.

The following order (filed with the Clerk by Mr. Walsh of Boston) was referred, under Rule 24, to the committee on Rules:
Ordered, That all House matters pending before the former joint committee on Federal Financial Assistance shall be considered to be under the jurisdiction of the committee on Homeland Security and Federal Affairs.
Mr. Scaccia of Boston, for said committee on Rules, then reported that the order ought to be adopted. Under suspension of the rules, on motion of Mr. Walsh, the order was considered forthwith; and it was adopted. Sent to the Senate for concurrence.

Petitions.

Petitions severally were presented and referred as follows:
By Mr. O’Flaherty of Chelsea, petition (accompanied by bill, House, No. 4410) of Eugene L. O’Flaherty (with the approval of the mayor and city council) relative to the composition of the school committee of the city of Chelsea. To the committee on Education, Arts and Humanities.
By Mr. Hill of Ipswich, petition (accompanied by bill, House, No. 4411) of Bradford Hill and Bruce E. Tarr (by vote of the town) providing for a certain real property tax exemption in the town of Hamilton. To the committee on Taxation.
Severally sent to the Senate for concurrence.

Papers from the Senate.

The engrossed Bill relative to the Upper Blackstone Water Pollution Abatement District (see Senate, No. 1989, amended), which had been returned to the Senate by the Secretary of the Commonwealth, Acting Governor, with recommendation of amendment (for message, see Senate, No. 2182) came from said branch with the endorsement that said amendment had been adopted as follows:
In section 2 by striking out the last sentence contained therein and inserting in place thereof the following sentence: “The votes shall be distributed so that each board member from Worcester shall be entitled to 1 vote with the remaining votes to be distributed evenly among the Worcester board members.”.
Under suspension of Rule 35, on motion of Mr. Peterson of Grafton, the amendment (reported by the committee on Bills in the Third Reading to be correctly drawn) was considered forthwith; and it was adopted, in concurrence.

A Bill authorizing the town of Rockland to transfer certain funds (printed in Senate, No. 2183) (on a message from His Excellency the Governor), passed to be engrossed by the Senate, was read.
Under suspension of the rules, on motion of Mr. Nyman of Hanson, the bill was read a second time forthwith; and it was ordered to a third reading.
Subsequently, under suspension of the rules, on further motion of the same member, the bill (having been reported by the committee on Bills in the Third Reading to be correctly drawn), was read a third time; and it was passed to be engrossed, in concurrence.

A Bill authorizing the commissioner of Capital Asset Management and Maintenance to convey certain land to the Roxbury/South End Tenants’ Council, Inc., d/b/a Roxse Tenants Council (Senate, No. 2181) (on Senate bill, No. 2179), passed to be engrossed by the Senate, was read; and it was referred, under Rule 33, to the committee on Ways and Means.

Reports of Committees.

Mr. Rogers of Norwood, for the committee on Ways and Means, on House No. 3884, reported, in part, a Bill making appropriations for fiscal year 2004 to provide for supplementing certain existing appropriations and for certain other activities and projects (House, No. 4408) [Direct Appropriation: $40,000,000.00]. Read; and referred, under Rule 7A, to the committee on Steering, Policy and Scheduling.
Mr. Kujawski of Webster, for said committee, reported that the matter be scheduled for consideration by the House.
Under suspension of the rules, on motion of Mr. Kennedy of Brockton, the bill was read a second time forthwith; and it was ordered to a third reading.
Under suspension of the rules, on motion of Mr. Smizik of Brookline, the bill (having been reported by the committee on Bills in the Third Reading to be correctly drawn), was read a third time.
Pending the question on passing the bill to be engrossed, Mr. Finneran of Boston moved that it be amended by inserting after section 2 the following section:
“SECTION 2A. There is hereby established a special commission to consist of 1 member representing the secretary of health and human services, 1 member representing the commissioner of public health, 1 member representing the commissioner of medical assistance, 4 members of the house of representatives, 1 of whom shall be designated by the speaker of the house as co-chair of the commission and 1 of whom shall be appointed by the minority leader, 4 members of the senate, 1 of whom shall be designated by the senate president as co-chair of the commission and 1 of whom shall be appointed by the minority leader, 1 member representing the Massachusetts division of the American Cancer Society, 1 member representing the New England division of the American Heart Association, 1 member representing the Massachusetts Hospital Association, 1 member representing the Massachusetts League of Community Health Centers, 1 member representing the Massachusetts Medical Society, 1 member representing the Massachusetts Nurses Association, 1 member representing the Massachusetts Association of Health Plans, 2 members from communities disproportionately affected by health disparities to be designated by the speaker of the house, and 2 members from communities disproportionately affected by health disparities to be designated by the senate president, is hereby established for the purpose of conducting an investigation on the significant racial, ethnic and linguistic disparities in medical outcomes. The investigation shall include, but not be limited to disparities in the diagnosis and treatment of breast, cervical, prostate and colorectal cancers, strokes and heart attacks, infant mortality, diabetes, asthma and other respiratory illnesses.
Said commission shall convene on or before February 1, 2004 and shall file a report not later than August 1, 2005 with the governor and the offices of the clerk of the senate and house of representatives. The report shall include but not be limited to, recommendations for designing, implementing and improving programs and services and proposing appropriate statutory and regulatory changes to reduce disparities in access to health care services and quality care to reduce disparities in medical outcomes and to address diversity in the health care workforce including, but not limited to, doctors, nurses and physician assistants.”.
The amendment was adopted; and the bill (House, No. 4408, printed as amended) was passed to be engrossed. Sent to the Senate for concurrence.

By Mr. Mariano of Quincy, for the committee on Insurance, on a petition, a Bill relative to liquor legal liability insurance (House, No. 1881). Read; and referred, under Rule 7A, to the committee on Steering, Policy and Scheduling.
Mr. Kujawski of Webster, for said committee, reported that the matter be scheduled for consideration by the House.
Under suspension of the rules, on motion of Mr. Kennedy of Brockton, the bill was read a second time forthwith; and it was ordered to a third reading.

By Mrs. Owens-Hicks of Boston, for the committee on Local Affairs and Regional Government, on a petition, a Bill regarding the payment obligations of the city of Brockton under a water supply contract (House, No. 4314) [Local Approval Received]. Read; and referred, under Rule 7A, to the committee on Steering, Policy and Scheduling.
Mr. Kujawski of Webster, for said committee, reported that the matter be scheduled for consideration by the House.
Under suspension of the rules, on motion of Kennedy of Brockton, the bill was read a second time forthwith; and it was ordered to a third reading.

By Mr. Kujawski of Webster, for the committee on Steering, Policy and Scheduling, that the Bill relative to the city council of the city of Northampton (House, No. 4106) ought to pass [Local Approval Received].
Under suspension of Rule 7A, on motion of Mr. Smizik of Brookline, the bill was read a second time forthwith; and it was ordered to a third reading.

By Mr. Kujawski of Webster, for the committee on Steering, Policy and Scheduling, that the Bill designating the Brockton District Courthouse as the George N. Covett Courthouse (House, No. 4156, changed) ought to pass.
Under suspension of Rule 7A, on motion of Mr. Peterson of Grafton, the bill was read a second time forthwith; and it was ordered to a third reading.

Orders of the Day.

The House Bill relative to parking violations in the town of Wellfleet (House, No. 4122), reported by the committee on Bills in the Third Reading to be correctly drawn, was read a third time; and it was passed to be engrossed. Sent to the Senate for concurrence.

Emergency Measure.

The engrossed Bill relative to the Upper Blackstone Water Pollution Abatement District (see Senate, No. 1989, changed), having been certified by the Clerk to be rightly and truly prepared for final passage, was considered, the question being on adopting the emergency preamble.
A separate vote was taken, as required by the provisions of Article XLVIII (as amended by Article LXVII) of the Amendments to the Constitution; and the preamble was adopted, by a vote of 7 to 0. Sent to the Senate for concurrence.
Subsequently, the Senate having concurred in adoption of the emergency preamble, the bill (which originated in the Senate) (which had been returned by the Acting Governor with recommendation of amendment) was passed to be re-enacted, in its amended form; and it was signed by the acting Speaker and sent to the Senate.

Engrossed Bills.

Engrossed bills
Authorizing the town of Rockland to transfer certain funds (see Senate bill printed in Senate, No. 2183) (which originated in the Senate);
Relative to preliminary elections in the town of Framingham (see House, No. 4170, amended) (which originated in the House);
Severally having been certified by the Clerk to be rightly and truly prepared for final passage, were passed to be enacted; and they were signed by acting the Speaker and sent to the Senate.

Order.

On motion of Mr. DiMasi of Boston,—
Ordered, That when the House adjourns today, it adjourn to meet on Monday next at eleven o’clock A.M.
At eighteen minutes after eleven o’clock A.M., on motion of Mr. Peterson of Grafton (Mr. Demakis of Boston being in the Chair), the House adjourned, to meet on Monday next at eleven o’clock A.M., in an Informal Session.