An Act to protect fundamental freedoms and prohibit discriminatory registration programs

The Fundamental Freedoms Act will protect Massachusetts residents from two kinds of anti-democratic government monitoring.  1) It will bar state agencies and employees from establishing or helping the federal government to establish any discriminatory “registration” system based on religion, national origin, or any other protected identity, and 2) it will prevent government agencies from collecting information about residents’ protected First Amendment activities — speech, associations, or religious beliefs — except when law enforcement has reasonable grounds to suspect a person is involved in a crime and their protected activities are directly relevant to the investigation.

 

An Act to promote best tax expenditure practices

Tax exemptions, deductions, credits, exclusions and other deviations have a major impact on state revenues, yet, once created, largely escape later review.  There are hundreds of such “expenditures” and this bill, modeled on a national “best practices” protocol, would provide for an annual review so that these “expenditures” (many of them outdated or of questionable benefit) would be subject to the same scrutiny as all other budgetary provisions.

 

An Act to establish a Legislative Budget Office

This bill creates a Legislative Budget Office, a non-partisan office within the Legislature charged with providing independent, objective fiscal estimates and analyses to all legislators and staff upon request, similar to the federal Congressional Budget Office.

 

An Act requiring appropriation bills to include estimated amounts for the following fiscal year

To encourage more long-term thinking and planning, this bill requires the Governor and Legislature to provide budget figures for two, not just the current, fiscal years.

 

An Act to eliminate unnecessary laws

This bill would create a standing commission charged with examining the Massachusetts General Laws and making recommendations for the deletion, correction, revision, amendment, rearrangement, consolidation, compilation and recodification of the laws.

 

An Act relative to State House fees

This bill would ensure that State House spaces are available for appropriate use by non-profit advocacy organizations at no charge.

 

Proposal for a legislative amendment to the Constitution relative to a vacancy in the office of Governor or Lieutenant Governor

This amendment stipulates that in the event of a vacancy in the office of Lt. Governor, a new Lieutenant Governor would be selected through nomination by the Governor and a majority vote of confirmation by both the House and Senate, as is done in the federal government. Currently there is no mechanism for filling any such vacancy.