Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Representative Roy: What's happening in the district - January 2015 newsletter

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Israel study tour a success

The Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC) of Greater Boston continued its long history of leading Massachusetts community leaders on a study tour of Israel, providing state and local officials with an in-depth look into the political, security, and economic challenges and successes facing Israeli society.
From December 8-18, 2014, I was one of 16 participants who traveled throughout the state, learning from government officials and religious, academic, media and business leaders. The trip allowed us to deepen our understanding of Israel's politics and culture and examine some of the business and economic ties that bring Israel and Massachusetts together. 
While there we met with government officials and other influential leaders from all sectors of Israeli society. We visited Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Haifa, and the West Bank. We encountered Israel's economy, including its booming research, development, and tech sector.

The trip helped me understand how a young nation, which is similar in size to New Jersey and Massachusetts, has become one of the most creative and economically strong countries. Beyond that, it gave me a sense of empathy for Israelis, Palestinians, and the Arab world around them. Empathy leads to better decision-making, and thus will help me be a better legislator. I look forward to sharing more about the trip over the coming weeks.

Governor's Inaugural

Great pageantry surrounded the inauguration of Charlie Baker as the new Governor for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

As he put pen to paper and signed the book on the House rostrum, it was a sign that a new chapter was about to begin for our great state. Rep. Roy is happy to begin his second term as this new chapter unfolds.

Congratulations Governor Baker. We look forward to working with you and your team.

For more pictures from Inauguration Day, click here. For the Milford Daily News report, click here.

MCSW Commission

The MetroWest Commission on the Status of Women and Girls now has 9 new Commissioners! At a ceremony at Framingham State University, Franklin's Denise Schultz joined her fellow commissioners to take the oath from Framingham District Court First Justice David Cunis.

Rep. Roy was delighted to attend the swearing in ceremony. Thank you to Sen. Karen Spilka for filing the legislation. Rep. Roy was honored to be a co-sponsor and looks forward to working with the Commission.

For the Milford Daily News report on the event, click here.

Promoting biotech

Rep. Roy hosted a Life Sciences Development Meeting in Franklin earlier in the month. Local biotechnology companies, Franklin town officials and members of the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center joined the discussion about the opportunities within the Life Sciences Industry, the potential for future development within the region, and what Franklin has already done to successfully attract and retain life science companies.

Cornerstones of Life Sciences Industry range from pharmaceuticals and medical devices to diagnostics and biotechnology. Thanks to its world-class academic institutions and medical centers, its talented and innovated workforce and its industry-sector leading companies, Massachusetts has firmly established itself as a global leader in the Life Sciences and has fully committed the state's economic well-being to the development and advancement of these Industries.

"Franklin has positioned itself well to attract life science businesses to the area," said Rep. Roy "In 2014 its BioReady ranking was elevated from Gold to Platinum signifying Franklin's readiness to work with biotechnology companies interested in locating in the area. On top of that, it has great schools and reasonable housing prices, making it a great place to live, work and raise a family."

Click here for the Milford Daily News report on the event. To view the press release on the event, click here.

Study tour to Israel links

To review the Milford Daily News reports on Rep. Roy's trip, click here and here.

To view photographs from the tour, click here.

To view the book that Rep. Roy put together about the journey, click here.

To view the Jewish Community Relations Council website, click here.

To view the JCRC press release on the trip, click here.

To view the report from The Jewish Journal on the trip, click here.

To view an op-ed piece from Boston City Councilor Josh Zakim on the trip, click here.

Sworn in for second term

Wednesday, January 7, 2015, was quite a special day in Boston.

At 11 a.m., Rep. Roy was sworn in for his second term as a member of the House of Representatives. "It is an honor and privilege to serve the citizens of Franklin and Medway and I am grateful to everyone who helped me get here," said Roy after the ceremony.

Later that day, Governor Patrick took his lone walk out of the State House for his last day in office. Rep. Roy was one of many onlookers and noted that it was a pleasure serving with Governor Patrick.

To see photos from the swearing in ceremony and lone walk, click here.

State House time capsule opened at MFA

Rep. Roy attended the opening of the State House time capsule from 1795 at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. It was simply amazing to see these pieces of history come alive and bring us back in time.

Artifacts from Samuel Adams and Paul Revere, along with newspapers and coins from that period were revealed in great condition. The artifacts will undergo some preservation work, and then will be displayed for the public before getting buried again.

For more details on the capsule opening, click here. For pictures from the capsule opening, click here. Click here to see workers removing the cornerstone at the State House to retrieve the capsule.

Bills filed for 189th General Court session

Last Friday was the deadline to timely file legislation for the 189th General Court. By 5 p.m. that day, the House Clerk had recorded over 5,333 bills filed by 200 legislators.

Rep. Roy filed several bills dealing with higher education financing, teen sexting, privacy of student data, the independent contractor law, and loan repayments for human service workers. He also modified and re-filed some legislation from last session which includes bills on distinctive license plates, online legal notices, and genocide education.

Over the next two weeks, Rep. Roy will be reviewing legislation filed by other representatives for the purpose of co-sponsoring the bills.

You can review and follow the progress on Rep. Roy's bills by clicking here. You can set up an account to track all legislation and legislators throughout Massachusetts by clicking here.
The revived Foundation Budget Review Commission is hearing testimony through March 2015. The Commission will be required to present its findings in a report on or before June 30, 2015.

The Commission is reviewing the adequate spending level for school districts known as the "foundation budget." The charge to the commission is to review the way foundation budgets are calculated and to make recommendations for potential changes in those calculations as the Commission deems appropriate.

Citizens are encouraged to testify live, or otherwise let your voice be heard by providing written testimony. Anyone interested in getting on the record is urged to contact our office for hearing dates, locations, or the address for submitting written testimony. You can also get more information by clicking here.

We will report on the Commission findings and recommendations later in the year.
Copyright © 2015 State Rep Jeff Roy, All rights reserved.
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