Patrick meets with top political supporters
Gov. Deval Patrick planned this week to sit down with his top political supporters as he weighs some of his biggest decisions and readies for a re-election campaign next year.
The Massachusetts Democrat’s top political aide sent an e-mail to his supporters last Friday, inviting them to Somerville for a meeting on Tuesday.
It comes as he considers signing transportation and ethics overhaul bills, as well as a fiscal 2010 budget that includes tax increases and cuts in some of his favored programs.
Aide Charlotte Golar Richie says the governor has called the meeting to obtain input and guidance “regarding the difficult decisions ahead.”
Patrick has already said he will seek a second term in 2010.
A company that tracks real estate data in Massachusetts says a drop in the number of foreclosed homes in May is an encouraging sign, but also cautions that the foreclosure crisis could be far from over.
The Warren Group says there were 582 foreclosure deeds recorded in the state last month, a drop of nearly 25 percent from April and almost 60 percent from May 2008. The number of homes foreclosed on last month was the lowest since 2007.
Warren Group CEO Timothy Warren says many lenders are taking steps to keep people in their homes whenever possible. But he points out that the pace of foreclosure petitions — the first step in the foreclosure process — rose 15 percent from April.
Warren says unemployment continues to creep up and people without jobs will have trouble paying their mortgages.
New Bedford factory workers rally to save jobs
NEW BEDFORD — Workers from a New Bedford leather-goods factory raided in 2007 by immigration agents held a rally with community leaders to try to save their jobs.
Employees from Eagle Industries were joined last Saturday by political officials, including representatives from Sen. John F. Kerry’s office, who read a joint statement from Kerry and Sen. Edward M. Kennedy.
Eric Sharfstein, a spokesman for Workers United, a group trying to organize the workers, said the employees are also planning to meet with Army officials in Washington, D.C., and Natick.
The plant’s owner, Minneapolis-based military contractor Alliant Techsystems, announced last month it was closing the plant.
In 2007, federal immigration agents raided the same plant, which was under another owner at the time, and arrested 361 undocumented workers.
The Massachusetts Historical Society in Boston has received $450,000 in federal funds for its project to preserve the papers of John Adams.
The money comes from a $250,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and a $200,000 matching offer.
It will be used to help prepare three volumes of John Adams’ papers, two volumes of the Adams Family Correspondence and conversion of some of those papers to digital format.
The Massachusetts Historical Society has one of the most significant collections of Adams family papers in the world.
The NEH grant was part of $21.4 million in awards to 154 humanities projects nationwide.
Puerto Rican Korean War unit honored in Mass.
WORCESTER — A ceremony has been held in Worcester to honor a Puerto Rican infantry unit that fought in the Korean War and Puerto Rican service men and women killed in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The ceremony Saturday at the Korean War Memorial highlighted the experiences of the Puerto Rican 65th Infantry Regiment known as the “Borinqueneers.”
The unit won four Distinguished Service Crosses and its soldiers earned 125 Silver Stars.
U.S. Rep. James McGovern, D-Mass., and Puerto Rican Lt. Gov. Kenneth McClintock-Hernandez were on hand Saturday and also paid tribute to Puerto Rican service men and women killed recently in Iraq and Afghanistan.
WENHAM — The former chief executive of Raytheon has donated his archives to Gordon College and has established a $100,000 scholarship at the school on Boston’s North Shore.
The archives span the 42 years that Thomas Phillips spent with the company from 1948 to 1991. They include speeches, letters, articles and photographs taken of Phillips with five U.S. presidents.
The collection also includes an original Amana microwave oven, which was the product of technology developed by Raytheon, and a model of a Hawk guided missile, first produced by the company in the 1950s.
Phillips, a longtime trustee at Gordon College in Wenham, created the scholarship for women or minority students who major in science, technology, engineering or math.
BARNSTABLE — Cape Cod law enforcement agencies have launched a nutritious way to get unwanted guns off the streets.
Local police departments in conjunction with the sheriff’s department and the district attorney’s office last Thursday started a “Guns for Groceries” program that gives residents a $50 gift certificate to local supermarkets in exchange for weapons.
Barnstable County Sheriff Jim Cummings tells WXTK-FM radio that the aim is not to make arrests, but to take unwanted weapons out of circulation.
Barnstable Police Chief Paul McDonald says that his department recovered more than 50 firearms last year alone.
The program is being funded with money forfeited in drug cases.
Residents can turn in their unwanted guns at police stations in Barnstable, Falmouth, Orleans and Truro.