Boston Marathon And Other Events Cancelled

Boston Marathon And Other Events Cancelled

The Boston Marathon is one of the most exciting events for the city. For years it has been a staple in raising awareness for countless charities. This year has proven disastrous for almost all cities and states across the country. Due to COVID-19 the city will not be having the marathon for the 2020 year.

Boston Marathon To Reopen Next Year

The threat of COVID-19 has been the source of most of the worlds current problems. While many cities have not been as drastically effected by the virus, Boston remains a large fighting ground against it.

The effects have halted almost all small businesses and events for the remainder of the year. The threat of COVID-19 has pushed back almost all events for the city.

Boston Calling Cancelled

Another one of the largest events in the city is Boston Calling. Every year the festival hosts a multitude of huge names in the music industry. From The Gorillaz to the Beastie Boys to even metal acts such as Tool, the event gathering thousands.

The concert has already undergone their refund stages. The end date was April 28th but for those who could not fill out the refund request form, their tickets have rolled over to the 2021 event.

Events and bars will remain closed for an undetermined amount of time. This has caused a devastating blow to shop owners and event organizers who look forward to putting n these events for the public.

The precautions are necessary for the city to open up to regular performance. Event organizers have been cautious to continue with their concerts. Many have opted not to continue due to not wanting people to get sick or to be responsible for those who do.

For next year, things might look better. For the time being, events will be postponed to a later date.

Mayor Walsh Pushes Back Boston’s Reopening

Mayor Walsh Pushes Back Boston’s Reopening

Much discussion has taken place over the past few weeks regarding the timing of the economy’s reopening. With local officials taking the lead, it seems up to governors and city leaders to determine the best date for them. In Boston, Mayor Walsh recently made comments indicating the previous end date for quarantine no longer applies.

Instead, he opted for a more indefinite timeline in an address Monday. Definitively, Mayor Walsh stated, “I can tell you right now Boston will not reopen on May 4.” He reiterated the city remains in its worst stretch, otherwise known as the surge of coronavirus. As such, easing restrictions bodes poorly for the city.

Therefore, Mayor Walsh spoke of continued social distancing and closures of non-essential businesses. He said the city should move forward cautiously and avoid missteps. “We never want to put ourselves in a position where we move too quickly and undo the progress we have made,” he added.

During this time, however, he and city officials aren’t simply waiting out the virus. Presently, they are building a “recovery framework” to assist in the eventual return to normalcy for Bostonians and area businesses.

Mayor Walsh Joined by Gov. Baker in Extending Orders

In addition to the decision made my Mayor Walsh, Massachusetts’s Governor Baker announced Tuesday a 2 week extension of the statewide order. Gov. Baker expressed empathy with those frustrated at the prolonged quarantine. However, he also spoke of the importance of following the guidelines recommended by health experts.

“There is literally no one who thinks you can open the door and put people back into working environments if you haven’t seen any negative trends,” he said.

Additionally, he announced the formation of a special task force. Its duty includes determining the phased approach for the state’s reopening, once case counts exhibit a downward trajectory.

At present, Massachusetts has a covid-19 total confirmed case count of 56,462, third in the nation after New York and New Jersey. Boston’s case count presently exceeds 8,100. Mayor Walsh urged residents to remain at home. He also said people should wear masks in public, shared spaces.

Food Trucks Slammed By Pandemic Downturn

Food Trucks Slammed By Pandemic Downturn

While social distancing measures appear to effectively flatten the curve, the economic impact on most businesses continues to sting. Restaurants operate exclusively with take out and delivery orders. However, food trucks don’t ordinarily offer those options. Without bustling business districts and campuses, many close down for the outbreak’s duration.

Since they provide food, the Massachusetts executive order considers them essential businesses. However, vital hubs for food trucks such as Harvard Science Center Plaza and the Financial District emptied out. In the absence of important hot spots, food trucks struggle to identify viable areas.

Some also run catering orders, a valuable additional source of revenue. Though, with Governor Charlie Baker’s prohibition on gatherings of 10 or more in one place, little demand exists for catering. Meetings, lunches, and events remain on pause until further notice.

Food Trucks Cut Staff, Adapt

As business dries up for food trucks, many are forced to cut staff. One popular chain, Chicken and Rice Guys, which offers halal food, closed all of its trucks. “We tried operating them but literally had four orders in three hours,” CEO Ian So told Eater Boston. He also said they discussed potentially transitioning to suburban business, but opted against it.

Their usual posts at Harvard University, Boston Public Library, and the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston no longer offer lines of hungry customers. As a result, they furloughed the entirety of their truck staff.

Some attempt to operate through the economic downturn. Daddy’s Bonetown Burgers continues to sell orders to some regulars and occasional walk-ups. They also utilize an online transaction system that eliminates the need for cash, a helpful safety measure during the health crisis.

Furthermore, transitioning to deliveries provides additional business. Food truck businesses adapt to compete in an unfamiliar market, using Google forms and social media ads. It allows several to retain their staff in hopes of weathering the coronavirus storm.

Parking Tickets Ease During Outbreak

Parking Tickets Ease During Outbreak

While Boston residents shelter in place, many raised concerns over the parking space where their cars reside. In response, the city eases the issuing of parking tickets and towing for most parking infractions during the coronavirus outbreak.

In an announcement on Sunday, Boston’s Mayor Marty Walsh laid out the policy shift to the public. Standing before city hall, Walsh said, “Until further notice, the Boston transportation department will no longer be issuing tickets for expired inspection stickers or registrations.”

However, as recently as last week attendants issues parking tickets for failure to pay the meter. As reported by the Boston Herald, a ticket was spotted on the windshield of a silver Lexus on March 23. That car sat on an otherwise empty street. The offense runs the owner $35.

The policy shift creates more wiggle room for locals in their own neighborhoods. So long as a car features the respective permit sticker, its owner may park it in their neighborhood at meters or 2 hour spots without paying or moving.

Additionally, though street sweeping begins this week, Walsh stated no tickets will be issued for cars in the way of sweepers.

Parking Tickets Remain for Specific Cases

However, despite the leniency, certain rules still merit tickets. For example, if you park within a handicap spot, parking attendants still issue a ticket.

Additionally, cars parked in crosswalks or in front of fire hydrants also receive tickets or towing.

These exceptions serve the public safety. Pedestrians need safe walkways, and those with disabilities need reserved spaces nearer to front entrances.

Addressing handicap spaces, Walsh said during his press conference, “So don’t be sitting in there waiting for somebody to come out, or any type of handicapped spot because that is causing problems, we’re hearing.”

Perhaps to ease the misuse of handicap spots, the city is also creating 5 minute waiting zones directly in front of restaurants. With dine-in service presently on hold until further notice, take-out service picks up. 5 minute parking cuts down on customer walking.

Traffic In Boston Worst In Nation

Traffic In Boston Worst In Nation

For the second year in a row, Boston took top spot in a study of traffic across the United States. INRIX, a company that provides traffic analytics, found the city displayed the most congestion in the country.

Additionally, Boston also came in just second across all of North America, trailing Mexico City in first. Following Boston, the top five US cities also include Chicago, Philadelphia, New York, and Washington DC, respectively.

Quantified in lost productivity, each Bostonian driver on average lost 149 hours sitting in traffic. While an improvement over 2018, in which the average was 164, the reduction failed to improve its ranking.

A variety of factors contribute to the congestion clogging up the city’s streets. For one, as an old New England town, its roadways originally saw traffic of a very different, must less demanding kind. Prior to the advent of the automobile, horse-drawn carriages and carts maneuvered considerably shorter distances, localizing much of the city’s traffic.

Since the city developed its paths based on an older form of conveyance, its infrastructure built up around unorganized streets. Modern architecture replaced its predecessors but inhabited the same spaces. The introduction of cars forced a new technology into an unprepared and inadequate system.

The problem plagues a number of east coast cities, beholden to a map not conducive to contemporary travel.

Traffic Woes With Mired Solutions

Now, as populations continue to concentrate in urban centers, Boston’s traffic problem only worsens. With an increasing demand for city housing, prices soar, pushing tenants out into the surrounding area. However, with jobs still in the city, commutes extend miles outside of it. Thus, traffic to and from Boston gets worse.

Proposed solutions include building up apartment and condo complexes near public transit stops. The hope there is to inspire tenants to take public transit, reducing the number of cars on the road. The issue there involves cooperation between different municipalities. Boston requires the collaboration of surrounding cities, who themselves fear increased traffic alongside the construction of denser housing.

For now, it appears few cities rival Boston’s congestion.

David Nangle, State Representative, Arrested

David Nangle, State Representative, Arrested

For charges that include bank fraud, wire fraud, filing false tax returns, and lying to a bank, FBI and IRS agents arrested State Representative David Nangle Tuesday.

According to a lengthy indictment unsealed Tuesday, Rep. David Nangle accrued a great many gambling debts throughout New England. As a result, he turned to his campaign coffers to make up the difference. The misuse of campaign funds constitutes a serious crime, as demonstrated by the national story in 2018 involving Donald Trump’s hush money payment to Stormy Daniels.

In this case, Nangle used campaign funds to cover various personal expenses unrelated to his campaign. Joe Bonavolonta of the FBI explained, “Time after time he allegedly used campaign funds to pay for personal expenses, spending thousands of dollars on golf club fees, gas, gift cards, hotels, restaurants, flowers and rental cars for trips to casinos, some of which he had already been reimbursed for by taxpayers.”

Upon examination by regulators, Nangle lied, claiming a political purpose for each expense.

His gambling problem led to tens of thousands of dollars of debt. He frequented casinos in Connecticut, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island. Additionally, he lost thousands on online betting.

Furthermore, he borrowed in excess of $100,000 from friends and business owners to fill in some of his debt. He returned these personal loans with campaign contributions.

Nangle also paid for a country club membership and its green fees with campaign funds, fraudulently labeling them as catering fees. He rented cars to travel to casinos with money from his campaign account.

On his taxes, Nangle claimed deductions that were highly improbable. For example, he claimed deductions for 47,000 miles of driving related to consulting work. That amounts to 345 miles per day for an entire year.

Liquor Licenses Proposed For Outlying Areas

Liquor Licenses Proposed For Outlying Areas

Thirsty? Outlier neighborhoods in Boston may see an increase of restaurants serving spirits thanks to an initiative proposed in the city council. Liquor licenses have been hard to come by there, but that could change.

The new bill, proposed by Councilor Frank Baker, provides for 150 new liquor licenses specifically for outlying neighborhoods. Increasingly, these neighborhoods lose watering holes, forming a dearth of options.

The bill provides an opportunity for restauranteurs to enter these neighborhoods and provide choice. The bill allots the 150 licenses for issuance between 2021 and 2023. Furthermore, the licenses return to the city for reissue in the event a holder goes under.

The following neighborhoods receive 15 licenses each in the bill: Dorchester, Roxbury, Mattapan, Hyde Park, Allston/Brighton, Roslindale, South Boston, West Roxbury, Charlestown, and East Boston.

“It gives us as a city the ability to look at economic opportunities for different neighborhoods,” explained Baker to the Boston Herald.

Because so many restaurateurs shell out for existing licenses in more bustling districts like the Seaport and downtown, local restaurants dwindle. Businesses in outlier neighborhoods shutter as their owners move on.

Baker also suggested the price tag to attain a license proves a barrier to entry for many aspiring entrepreneurs.

Liquor Licenses Face Approval Process

Councilmembers introduced similar bills in the past, hoping to benefit outlier districts. Ayanna Pressley, once a city councilmember before winning a congressional seat, introduced a bill bringing 75 licenses. That bill targeted neighborhoods outside downtown. However, many neighborhoods still lost out due to a lack of specific earmarking in that bill.

Mayor Martin Walsh also sought to increase the number of liquor licenses throughout his tenure.

Baker’s proposal requires a series of approvals before implementation. First, council takes it up. Then, it requires the mayor’s signature. Finally, the Legislature votes and the governor signs off. Historically, such “home run” bills faced push back from Beacon Hill.

Baker remains confident, though, given the momentum of previous efforts.

Racial Bias Case To Be Heard by SJC

Racial Bias Case To Be Heard by SJC

A case revolving around racial bias in police practices heads to the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court. Its decision will determine what constitutes a valid justification for police stops.

The case involves an arrest made on January 9, 2017. Then, two white police officers, Joseph Abasciano and Brian Garney, patroled the Roxbury/Dorchester area. That area features a history of violent crime.

Around 7:30 pm, shots rang out, leaving one victim critically injured. Abasciano and Garney began a search for possible suspects. At the same time, Tykorie Evelyn, a 17-year-old black man, walked through the neighborhood alone. When the two police officers encountered him, they pulled alongside Evelyn and requested to speak with him.

Officers characterized Evelyn as nervous and evasive, walking briskly and possibly hiding something from their view. They asked if Evelyn knew anything about the shooting in the area. When he replied no, they continued to follow him.

Based on his behavior, police records show, the officers determined Evelyn acted suspiciously enough to warrant a search. They exited their cruiser and Evelyn gave flight. They chased after him until he lay down near a parked car. Following, they arrested him and found a gun nearby.

Now, attorneys for Evelyn claim the officers illegally arrested and searched their client, citing racial bias.

Court to Decide if Racial Bias led to Arrest

The defense hinges on a conclusion regarding Evelyn’s behavior. Various legal experts, from NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund to Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice at Harvard Law School, argue in favor of Evelyn. They believe his behavior mirrors reasonable suspicions of police officers within the Black community. Therefore, his behavior did not suggest guilt or association with the nearby shooting.

Thus, stopping him becomes unwarranted.

The logic asks what a reasonable individual would do in similar circumstances. Evelyn’s defense argues the court must consider police practices. Since police disproportionately stop and frisk young Black men, Evelyn’s flight can reasonably be attributed to fears of racial profiling – it cannot be cited as evidence of guilt to justify his arrest.

The implications of the SJC’s ruling will likely impact police policy moving forward for all departments within the commonwealth.

Man Who Murdered Boston Doctors Sentenced

Man Who Murdered Boston Doctors Sentenced

BOSTON, MA – The man who killed two Boston doctors was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole. He beat, bound, and stabbed the engaged couple to death with a carving knife inside their upscale South Boston condo.

Apart from this, 33-year-old Bampumim Teixeira was found guilty by a Suffolk County grand jury on Tuesday. The man from Chelsea was convicted of murdering two Boston doctors, Dr. Lina Bolanos and Dr. Richard Field.

However, Teixeira was forced to watch the sentencing on a video monitor in another room per Judge Mitchell Kaplan’s instruction. The judge’s order stemmed from several outbursts Teixeira had earlier in the week. Still, he was given the opportunity to speak before his sentencing but chose not to. 

It should be noted that Teixeira was a doorman at the Macallen Building on Dorchester Avenue where the doctors lived. Before violently killing the couple on May 5, 2017, he duct-taped them. Reportedly, authorities discovered the bodies in pools of blood.

Furthermore, on Tuesday, Teixeira was pulled out of court for verbally attacking Suffolk County Assistant District Attorney John Pappas. In addition to this, he made offensive remarks and threatened to sexually assault Pappas’ wife. 

Moments before the guilty verdicts were announced, Teixeira yelled out, “Do you want to know his last words?” Undoubtably, Field’s family were brought to tears. And, as a result of his outburst, Teixeira was swarmed by officers and ushered away.

During a police interview, Teixeira told detectives that he and Bolanos were having an affair. Additionally, stating that Field stabbed Bolanos to death after walking in on them.

He said he murdered Field in an act of self-defense.

The Boston doctors planned to get married and have children. As well as open a health clinic in the Bahamas for the less fortunate.

Driver Hits Police Cruiser 3 Times

Driver Hits Police Cruiser 3 Times

BOSTON, MA – A 42-year-old man allegedly rammed his vehicle, head on, into a police cruiser. In fact, he drove his vehicle into the squad car a total of three times. As a result, he is now facing multiple charges, including attempted murder with a motor vehicle.

The suspect’s identity has not been released. However, in addition to attempted murder, he is also charged with possession of ammunition without a license, and assault and battery with a dangerous weapon. Along with operating under the influence, negligent operation, and failure to stop for police. Not only that but attempting to commit a crime: larceny of a firearm and attempting to commit a crime: larceny from a building as well. 

Following the Middleborough Police Department’s investigation, the suspect will likely face additional charges. His arraignment will be held Thursday in Wareham District Court.

According to a news release, police responded to a call around 9:34 p.m. which led them to Wareham Street. The call was regarding a reported disturbance at a home. However, once police arrived at the scene, the suspect allegedly fled. As a result, police followed. He led authorities into a parking lot, about a mile from where the initial disturbance was reported.

At that time, the suspect allegedly drove his vehicle head on into the police cruiser as it approached. As stated by police, he then backed up, and drove into the cruiser again. Then, backing up and driving head-on into the cruiser a third time. Subsequently, the suspect got out of the car and was arrested by police. Afterwards, he was transported to a hospital nearby by way of an ambulance.

Importantly, the officer in the police cruiser at the time sustained minor injuries. He was taken to another area hospital where he was treated and then released.

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