A reminder that the chamber’s Diversity & Inclusivity Committee has created a DEI resource page,
featuring a library of articles, videos and websites on corporate leadership, racial justice and other topics.
As you’ll see, the listings aren’t nearly as robust as they should be. This is very much a work in progress. If your business falls into one of these categories,
please provide your information here
Also, please share this with anyone who should be included.
Needham Street/Highland Ave project gets real
Secretary of Transportation Stephanie Pollack was on Needham Street with Newton Mayor Ruthanne Fuller, Needham Select Chair Moe Handel, State Sen. Mike
Rush and Rep. Ruth Balser for a ground breaking ceremony for the 1.7 mile Needham/Newton Corridor Roadway Reconstruction Project.
The $28.5 million project will make the road safer for motorists, cyclists and pedestrians and will include new, separated and raised bicycle lanes behind
the curb line next to the sidewalk along with new traffic signals and crosswalks from the Route 9 in Newton to Webster Street in Needham.
Construction begins next month
on the Highland Ave end of the project and will slowly move towards Newton over the next three years. Completion date is Aug 2023.
Pollack, Fuller and others noted that three years of construction is going to be really challenging for businesses, workers, residents and commuters. But
I’ve been following this project over the years and agreed with them when they predicted the results will be worth it.
Any hopes that Washington might agree to another Paycheck Protection Program, the Restaurant Relief Bill
any other stimulus measures, grew dimmer yesterday after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell told the White House not to strike an agreement with
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi before the Nov. 3 election, the Washington Post reports.
Why should McConnell be opposed to something many Republicans, Democrats, the Fed
and virtually every economist
agrees is needed?
McConnell reportedly said that any deal they reach could disrupt the Senate’s plans to confirm Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court next week.
Meanwhile, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s drop dead deadline to reach a deal was extended from yesterday to today, the Hill reports.
She said the House would have to draft the legislation by the end of the week to get something done before the election. Others have suggested that
getting a deal done by a lame duck Congress
after the election may be even harder
“And it’s stuff that would really make a difference across the country with respect to fighting the virus across the country and would provide stability.
I would like to see them finish the job on that.”
And this will make you even madder
As Washington fails to reach any consensus for more bailout money, hundreds of billions of dollars designed to help business from the Cares Act remains
uncommitted and may go unspent
What’s behind Door No. 7? A new tavern
“It is with a heavy heart but a positive outlook that I announce the time has come for me to say goodbye to The Candy Bar,” read an email announcement.
“Through the years, our staff have guided many of our valued clients through weddings, bar and bat mitzvah’s, proms and special occasions and we have
enjoyed every minute of it! I cannot thank you enough for you loyalty, patronage and your friendship over the years.”
Newton company part of BoSox plan to transform Fenway area
Newton-based WS Development is partnering with the Red Sox to convert five acres surrounding Fenway Park from parking lots, garages and retail stores into
housing and office space, along with green space and a possible hotel. (BBJ story here
Today’s helpful bullet points
- Is your business prepared for Paid Family and Medical Leave? Go here to register for one of two webinars (Mon. Oct. 26 at 1 p.m. or Weds. Oct. 28 at 8:30 p.m.) about the complex Paid Family and Medical Leave benefits that workers can begin utilizing in January.
- And Latinx-owned businesses have until midnight tonight to apply for a grant from the Support Latino Business Impact Fund. Visit SupportLatino.Biz and apply
Public higher ed enrollment declines
Undergraduate enrollment levels at public higher education institutions took a historic tumble this fall, and education officials say they are fearful
that the pandemic may forever throw college education plans off course for some students.
The 7 percent decline is the largest single-year decrease since data collection began, according to preliminary data
Fall enrollment for first-time degree-seeking students are down across the board, with a 12 percent decrease at the community college level.
"Millions of jobs in the hospitality and retail sectors are gone and tragically many of our students have lost jobs," said Middlesex Community College
President James Marby. "They're being forced to put off their educational plans. And we are concerned that many may not be able to get back on track."
Students most commonly cited personal finances as the top factor in deciding not to attend or return to colleges or universities, according to Jonathan
Keller, an official at the Department of Education.
Other reasons why students have given for not enrolling or returning to class include increased child care and parenting responsibilities, and discomfort
or dissatisfaction with distanced learning.
"There's a fear that a lot of the students who decided they just won't go this year, may have difficulty deciding in subsequent years that they're gonna
go back to higher education," Keller said.
We got mail!
A few readers emailed yesterday in response to a quote in this newsletter from Forbes’s Bruce Brumberg about potential legal issues related to divisive political speech
in the workplace.
Please know that I was not suggesting that Black Lives Matter and Make America Great Again were parallel statements. I’m pretty sure Brumberg wasn’t either.
But that doesn’t mean the courts will see it that way. Brumberg’s column was offering a legal perspective, not personal opinion.
"We're going to spend all that and more on all those extra kids!!!!" one wrote, as if there's something wrong with spending tax revenue to educate the
next generation, just as a generation before us paid for our educations.
Either way, I wasn't mistaken. I meant "net," as in, after you calculate the cost of fire, police, schools, etc., there’s $1.65 M left. And that’s just
one of the many reasons why the Newton City Council unanimously approved this transformative, transit-oriented, project on Monday.
Yes, the vote was 24-0!
Be back tomorrow. Go Mookie!
President, Newton-Needham Regional Chamber