Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Councilor Edwards Calls Hearing to Help Bostonians Repay Back Taxes

Boston can increase flexibility around property taxes to benefit seniors and other low-income homeowners 

Councilor Lydia Edwards this week called a hearing to ensure the City of Boston uses every tool at its disposal to ensure taxpayers can stay in their home during times of economic difficulty. 

Today, seniors and low-income homeowners who are “house rich, cash poor” face a big hurdle when they fall behind on property taxes. Although the city offers payment plans for back taxes, these plans require a substantial down payment and must be completed within one year. Homeowners who cannot repay back taxes within one year are at risk of foreclosure.

Councilor Edwards is pushing for Boston to expand the length of tax repayment and forgive a portion of interest on back taxes. State law allows municipalities to extend repayment of property taxes from one year to as long as five years and to forgive up to half the interest on back taxes. Adopting these provisions would reduce burdens on homeowners and allow more residents to stay in their homes. 

“As city agencies work to stabilize our communities and address the many housing and economic challenges we face, we should use all tools at our disposal to prevent crisis scenarios before they start,” said Councilor Edwards. “Offering another tool to seniors and low-income homeowners on repayment of late taxes is one simple step we could take to prevent foreclosures and allow residents facing economic challenges to stay in place.”

"Today, too many elderly and low income Boston residents face increasing property tax bills that they cannot afford," said Todd S. Kaplan, Senior Attorney of Greater Boston Legal Services. "By offering these residents more flexible payment plans to pay their back taxes with the opportunity to reduce accrued interest, we can help homeowners get current on their taxes and take real steps to ensuring Boston is a city for people of all ages and income levels."


Thursday, April 19, 2018

Mayor Walsh opens nominations for SPARK Boston's Annual Impact Awards

Awards shine a spotlight on young adults aged 20-34 doing outstanding work to improve the City

(BOSTON - Thursday, April 19, 2018) - Mayor Martin J. Walsh today announced nominations are now open for SPARK Boston's 2017-2018 Impact Awards. The annual Impact Awards shine a spotlight on young adults aged 20-34 doing outstanding work to improve the City of Boston. Nomination forms are available online, and will remain open through Friday, May 18, 2018.  

"Boston is a city shaped by the actions and leadership of our residents, and our millennial population works especially hard to make their mark on our community," said Mayor Walsh. "The Impact Awards reflect the City's appreciation for this generation and the emerging leaders in our neighborhoods and industries."

"The Impact Awards are a grassroots recognition of Boston's leaders between the ages of 20 to 34," said Amy Mahler, SPARK Boston Director. "Nominees are submitted from our community, reviewed by our selection committee composed of SPARK Council members, and voted on by the Boston community. If you are or know of someone who deserves an Impact Award, nominate them today."

"The most amazing thing about the Impact Awards is being recognized by your peers and fellow change agents in communities across Boston," said Matt Parker, 2016 Impact Award winner and 2017-2018 SPARK Council Member. "SPARK and the City of Boston creates platforms lifting up the millennials that strive to lift up this great city. I am humble and blessed to receive such an award and look forward to this year's recipients."

This year's award categories reflect the diverse ways millennial residents act as leaders and change-makers in Boston:
  • Arts & Culture: Visionaries who weave arts and culture into the fabric of our communities to engage and inspire those around them.
  • Entrepreneurship & Innovation: Civic innovators who help our city attract and keep talented people, expand economic opportunity and create a culture of engagement.
  • Activism & Issue Advocacy: Emerging leaders elevating the voices of young Bostonians on the issues that impact us all.
  • Public Service & Civic Leadership: Public servants, elected officials and other civic leaders working to ensure strong democracy and successful governance in our city.
  • Community Building & Neighborhood Improvement: Engaged citizens who work collaboratively to strengthen their neighborhoods and promote their communities' interests.
  • "Unsung Heroes": Outstanding teachers, social workers, nurses, emergency responders and human services professionals whose everyday dedication supports a healthy, thriving city.
Nominees must be between the ages of 20-34 and live/work in Boston to be considered. A selection committee comprised of members of the SPARK Boston Council will review all nominations and select the top nominees in each category. A round of online voting will follow, and winners will be announced at the SPARK Impact Award ceremony in June. To nominate a friend, colleague, neighbor or yourself, click here.  

About SPARK Boston

Boston is home to a large and diverse millennial population. SPARK Boston is a City of Boston initiative that aims to empower the millennial generation to play a greater role in planning for the future of our city.

SPARK Boston focuses on engaging the next generation of civic leaders and social entrepreneurs in the work of city government. This will shape how the City designs and develops policies, convenes stakeholders for important initiatives and works collaboratively with young people to shape Boston's future.

Press Office, Thursday, April 19, 2018

Friday, April 13, 2018

MassDOT: RMV Preparing for high number of customers April Vacation Week

Customers encouraged to start applications online, visit to learn about new document requirements, and to check wait times online

BOSTON – Ahead of April vacation week, beginning on April 16, a time during which the Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) traditionally sees a record number of customers at its service locations, the RMV is reminding the public to consider waiting if possible to visit a service location until after April 23.

The RMV encourages customers that, if they must visit a location April 17-April 20, to go online first to find out what documents are needed for the credential the customer seeks, fill out credential applications online and look at “real time” wait times for the service location the customer plans to visit.  In addition, the public is reminded that because Commonwealth of Massachusetts offices are closed on Monday, Patriot’s Day, RMV service locations will also be closed on Monday, April 16.

“While school vacation time can be a great time to run certain kinds of errands, some locations, including Registry service centers, can be busier than normal,” said Registrar Erin Deveney. “During an ordinary year, RMV centers on school vacation days see a high number of customers but next week will be especially busy with offices only open four days not five, and with each customer’s transaction taking longer on average than ever before because of the new federal and state requirements for more documents per customer to be validated. If people wish to take care of an RMV transaction between April 17 and April 20 we welcome them but they should go online to get informed and to find out where the shortest waits may be on a particular day.”

The best way to start any transaction is to visit the RMV’s website, at, where customers can “Get Ready” online by starting their application. The online application process includes entering contact information and proof of lawful presence which may be a U.S. birth certificate or passport number. After the application is submitted online, customers receive a confirmation email that reminds them of the documents they selected to bring to the RMV. The confirmation also includes a QR code that can be scanned at an RMV location, (from the confirmation email or a mobile device), which will speed the customer’s visit.

Students can also download the driver’s manual from the RMV website and study for their learner’s permit so they are completely prepared when they arrive for a test.

Before visiting a RMV Service Center, customers can visit to find out waiting times for all locations, and plan their trip accordingly.

Source:  MassDOT Press Office: 857-368-8500

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Sumner Tunnel Toll Plaza Reconstruction: Advance for April 15 - April 21

Sumner Tunnel Toll Plaza Reconstruction
Weekly Look-Ahead

Period of April 15, 2018 to April 21, 2018

Throughout the period covered by this look-ahead, MassDOT’s contractor for the Reconstruction of the Sumner Tunnel toll plaza will resume operations. No lane closures will be required and work will be during daytime hours between 6:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. No work will take place on Monday, April 16, Patriot’s Day.

At the Sumner Tunnel entrance, SNR will be installing light pole foundations and conduit in the Massachusetts State Police parking lot on Tuesday, April 17 and Wednesday, April 18. Crews from SNR will also install manholes, drywells and pipe in the Massachusetts State Police parking lot Thursday, April 19 and Friday, April 20. MassBay will install mast arm foundations Wednesday, April 18 through Friday, April 20. Crews will perform survey work as required. Police details will be onsite to assist with moving equipment across the road. No traffic setups will be required, and all work will be done in construction work zones.


The Sumner “swing lane” will open at 2 p.m. Friday, April 13 and it will remain open throughout the weekend and the Patriots Day Holiday/Marathon Day, Monday, April 16. The swing gate will close at 5 a.m., Tuesday, April 17 and resume normal operations for the rest of the week, opening 3 p.m. to 8 p.m., Tuesday through Friday.

The District will continue to monitor all traffic.  We will send out notification if there are any temporary adjustments to the swing lane hours.

To receive email and text alerts for a low balance on an EZPass transponder, go to and sign into your account. Select “Statement Options” and there you can sign up for email or text alerts on your EZPass transponder balance.

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Boston Landmarks Commission to solicit comments on 151 Liverpool Street demolition

Boston Landmarks Commission (BLC) received a complete application from Anthony Gilardi with Citypoint Liverpool, LLC, to demolish the commercial structure at 151 Liverpool Street in East Boston, MA 02128. Read more here

Monday, April 2, 2018

April 3: Boston city councilor Lydia Edwards to hold hearing on housing speculation

Boston City Councilor Lydia Edwards to hold hearing on Housing Speculation 

Council to examine displacement, affordability standards, progress on meeting Boston’s housing production goals

WHAT: The Committee on Housing and Community Development will hold a hearing on housing speculation and other trends affecting residents and the real estate market, including displacement of communities, the proliferation of luxury units and whether the standards of affordability in new development match incomes of current Boston residents. 

Members of the public are encouraged to attend or submit testimony.

WHERE: Iannella Chamber, 5th Floor, Boston City Hall

WHEN:   1 p.m., April 3rd


  • Boston City Councilor Lydia Edwards, Chair, Committee on Housing and Community Development

  • Representatives of the Boston Department of Neighborhood Development and the Boston Planning and Development Agency 

  • Members of Right to the City Boston

  • Various real estate industry representatives have been invited to testify

Link to official notice: