Wednesday Morning: Municipal Health Care On The Docket

Published May 25, 2011

The state Senate is set to open debate on a budget proposal that would allow local officials to shift municipal workers into lower-cost health care plans without union approval. Massachusetts labor leaders, according to the Globe, have accepted that some form of the plan is likely to be enacted.

A former advisor to Gov. Deval Patrick’s administration testified yesterday that former House Speaker Sal DiMasi pushed for a $13 million contract for the software company Cognos, from which DiMasi allegedly took kickbacks. David Simas will be cross examined by the defense today in DiMasi’s ongoing federal corruption trial.

Even if you’d fail them, it’s hard to fire a teacher. That means many poor teachers are still in classrooms, just shifted around the system. As part of WBUR’s Making An A+ Teacher series, WBUR’s Monica Brady-Myerov looks at the problem of bad teachers in public schools.

The number of English Language Learners identified as have a learning disability has skyrocketed in Massachusetts. According to a report, the number of ELL students with learning disabilities has more than doubled in the past decade.

Thanks to budget cuts, police officers in the embattled city of Lawrence are struggling to cope with rising crime rates and dwindling resources.

There’s a fever sweeping Boston, but you won’t need to head to the hospital. The Bruins need only win tonight to notch a berth in the Stanley Cup Finals for the first time in 21 years, and the city is getting behind its team. Goalie Tim Thomas will need a strong game to lead the team to victory.

What we’re following: We’ll continue to report on the state Senate’s budget debate, testimony in the DiMasi case and the criminal charges for the founder of the Judge Rotenberg Educational Center.