Rep. Gordon, Senator Friedman strongly support action on climate change solutions
Senator Cindy F. Friedman (D-Arlington) and Representative Ken Gordon (D-Burlington) recently joined over 80 of their legislative colleagues in uniting to support bold climate solutions in 2019, a release from their two office states. The Burlington officials signed onto a statement circulated by Senator Marc R. Pacheco (D-Taunton) and Representative Ruth B. Balser (D-Newton) – A New Year’s Resolution: Committing to the Enactment and Implementation of Bold Climate Solutions in 2019 – which signals considerable commitment to climate action in the 2019-2020 legislative session.
Friedman said that the threats of climate change are something that must be dealt with immediately to lessen the impact on future generations.
“We must take real action to address the threat of climate change with a sense of urgency so that we can build a sustainable future for generations to come,” said Senator Friedman. “The federal government may fail to address, or even acknowledge, this threat to humanity, but Massachusetts will not.”
Gordon also said failing to address the issue of changes in the climate now could lead to devastating impacts in the future.
“If we do not stand up for our environment today, our hopes for a sustainable tomorrow will dim,” said Rep. Gordon. “We cannot hand our children a crisis, and expect them to deal with it. In Massachusetts, we will act and we will do it now.”
Rep. Gordon acquires final funding for Lowell to Burlington shuttle serving restaurant workers
Burlington area businesses have a reason to celebrate the new year, as the Middlesex 3 Coalition, Senator Cindy Friedman (D-Arlington) and Representative Ken Gordon (D-Bedford) have secured funding necessary to establish a shuttle service that will allow local restaurants to fill hundreds of job openings with otherwise unemployed workers from Lowell.
“This is the epitome of a team effort,” said Rep. Gordon. “We began by laying out a plan. Rick Parker never stopped working. Stephanie Cronin, Executive Director of the Middlesex 3 Coalition, was instrumental in the details. Rep. David Nangle (D-Lowell) offered his help and guidance. And when Sen. Friedman took office, she stepped right in and continued the hard work that Sen. Ken Donnelly began.”
“In 2014, the legislature appropriated the money for our plan, and then we turned to the Administration.,” Gordon continued. “There are many worthy causes competing for economic development support, but Jay Ash, the Secretary of Housing and Economic Development, came to Burlington several times where he listened to our challenges. We brought in the Department of Transportation, and from there the Governor’s office approved our plan.”
Rep. Gordon organizes the return of Bingo at the Burlington Council on Aging
Representative Gordon organized volunteers from the Burlington Board of Selectmen, Chamber of Commerce, District Attorney’s office, and local media members to help bring Bingo back to the Burlington Council on Aging. The Council on Aging’s weekly bingo game has become a favorite among seniors in town. However, the game was put on hold during renovations at the Murray-Kelly room. Rep. Gordon organized volunteers and called numbers to kickoff Bingo’s return after the new year.
Gordon, Friedman Work to Dedicate Burlington Bridge in Honor of Fallen Hero LCpl Gregory MacDonald
Representative Ken Gordon joined his colleagues in the House to pass a bill that would rename a bridge on Cambridge Street at I-95 in Burlington the Lance Corporal Gregory E. MacDonald Memorial Bridge, a release from his office states. Marine LCpl Gregory MacDonald of Burlington gave his life serving during Operation Iraqi Freedom. The bill is now pending before the Senate where Senator Cindy Friedman (D-Arlington) is working to get it passed.
“It is critically important that we never forget those who made the ultimate sacrifice to ensure our safety,” Rep. Gordon said. “Dedicating this bridge in honor of Greg is one small thing we can do to honor his service to our country. It shows that Burlington will never forget his sacrifice.”
Rep. Gordon Delivers Remarks at Interfaith Solidarity Service in Wake of Pittsburgh Shooting
Rabbi Abramson, members of the interfaith clergy, and all of you gathered here; thank you for allowing me to share a few thoughts with you tonight. Shabbat Shalom. First, I join the chorus of voices here tonight, across Massachusetts and the nation who have offered their thoughts and prayers to the families of the 11 victims of the mass shooting at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, and especially to Sally and her son Bill Rabinowitz, both of Bedford, whose son and brother Jerry Rabinowitz was lost that day.
We offer our thoughts and prayers as well to the two African-American victims who were shot at a supermarket outside Louisville, Kentucky. Their killer first attempted to bring his gun into a predominantly black church but was locked out because services ended 90 minutes earlier.
Thoughts and prayers.
I’ve offered them many times, and we’ve gathered for vigils and showings of solidarity often. Too often. Offering thoughts and prayers is necessary, brings us together, and makes us feel as if we’ve done something. They are useful and should not cease. But what have they accomplished?
Just after I took office, we offered thoughts and prayers to the 27 children who were gunned down at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut. That didn’t stop another gunman from murdering 17 students at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida six years later.
Three years ago we offered our thoughts and prayers to the victims of a mass shooting at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, SC, where nine people were gunned down while praying — murdered for the color of their skin. That didn’t help the 11 worshipers of the Tree of Life Congregation — murdered because they were Jews.
Friends, our thoughts and prayers are simply not enough.
John F. Kennedy knew they weren’t enough when he delivered his inauguration address. He said, “with a good conscience our only sure reward, with history the final judge of our deeds, let us go forth to lead the land we love, asking His blessing and His help, but knowing that here on earth God’s work must truly be our own.” Or, as Ben Franklin said, “God helps those who help themselves.”
On Tuesday you will have a chance to do more than offer your thoughts and prayers: you will be able to help yourselves, because you will be able to VOTE. It is said that the thought is father to the deed. But a thought without action is an orphan. And there are far too many orphans these days.
Many of you have joined Rabbi Abramson and some of the other members of the Interfaith Counsel on Jericho Walks and I commend you. These protests are worthwhile expressions. But now is the time for action. Now is the time for voting. Because protesting without voting is like whistling in the wind.
Many of us were offended that the Squirrel Hill shooter posted on social media about his desire to shoot Jews, because he equated Jews with HIAS, a group he believes is sympathetic to asylum seekers he concludes are objectionable because of how they are portrayed by government leaders.
Being offended and not voting is not worth the paper that an unused ballot is printed on.
Please honor the memory of Jerry Rabinowitz. When he heard the shots ring out at his synagogue, he was in a side room, safe from the bullets’ path. He left that safety and rushed toward the bullets, because, as a physician, he thought someone might need his help.
You don’t have to run toward the bullets as Jerry did, but you can walk toward the ballots on his behalf, and on behalf of all those silenced by senseless hate and violence. Most of all, you can walk the walk for yourself, for your sense of dignity and for your sense of our shared humanity. Because then you will know that “with a good conscience your only sure reward, with history the final judge of your deeds, you went forward to lead the land you love, asking His blessing and His help, but knowing that here on earth you truly made God’s work your own.”
If you have voted early, I applaud you. If you have not voted yet, it’s up to you. Please, help. Please, vote.
Rep. Gordon Attends Governor’s School Safety Roundtable in Burlington
Gov. Charlie Baker was joined by more than a dozen legislatures, superintendents and police chiefs on Monday, Aug. 20 for a roundtable discussing his supplemental spending plan to aid public school security.
“I believe that there are additional opportunities that we should be considering especially when it comes to what takes place on the ground at the schools,” Baker said. “That has led to a $72 million proposal that is currently in front of the legislature that contains many of the proposals that have been brought in front of our staff.”
Baker’s plan includes $40 million in aid to school districts in hiring school counselors, social workers and mental health workers; as well as $20 million in matching grants for security and communication upgrades in public schools and universities.
Rep. Ken Gordon, D-Bedford, said the aid is needed in schools across the state, and that further development in school safety is something that is not only on the minds of legislatures and parents, but students as well.
“It addresses some very important issues in our schools. I had a young boy scout come to me a few weeks ago and he was working on a merit badge for community service, and I said ‘why don’t we work on a project together; what would be meaningful to you?,” Gordon said. “He said ‘in the schools, I feel safe if there is a fire, I know what to do. If we ever had a shooter, I wouldn’t know what to do.’ So that worries me, because our kids are thinking about this stuff.”
Rep. Gordon Joins Legislature to Address Campus Sexual Misconduct, Civics Education, and Consumer Protections as Formal Session Concludes
The Bedford Citizen
Representative Ken Gordon (D-Bedford) joined his colleagues in the Legislature to numerous pieces of legislation last week including a bill requiring civics education curriculum in all Massachusetts public schools, a bill that would protect Massachusetts consumers, and a bill that would require higher education institutions to conduct climate surveys relative to sexual misconduct every two years.
With the goal of fostering safe and inclusive campus environments, the surveys – known as campus climate surveys – will assist institutions with gathering sexual misconduct data, including the number of incidents of misconduct as well as provide information about student awareness of campus policies and procedures, and help campuses identify at-risk groups.
“Campus climate surveys are crucial to ensuring that Massachusetts college campuses are places where students feel safe. I applaud the efforts of students across the Commonwealth including the students at Middlesex Community College who made their voices heard in advocating for this legislation” said Rep. Ken Gordon.
Burlington Resident and Rep. Gordon Work to Help Veterans After They Come Home
Wicked Local Burlington
From the outside, most would assume a veterans hardest battle would be fought abroad during war, but for many veterans, it is not.
It is estimated on average 22 veterans commit suicide a day, due to the aftereffects of war and isolation. Burlington’s Robert “Bobby” Colliton knows this too well.
The 18-year veteran served in Bosnia, Iraq and Afghanistan, but in coming home he found himself isolated from society, often turning to alcohol to help him cope. That is when Colliton picked up hockey, a longtime passion of his. After finding the team camaraderie made it easier for him to deal with his post traumatic stress disorder, he thought it could help others like him. He and another veteran, Charlie Bobbish, created a free veterans hockey league based in New England called Skate for the 22.
“I have several friends who have committed or attempted to commit suicide since coming back from Afghanistan or Iraq [and a] few others who have overdosed on drugs,” said Colliton. “I myself had experienced post-traumatic stress and not really knowing what to do, so hockey helped me. And I figured if it helped me maybe it could help a group of other people.”
Colliton believes hockey is the perfect sport to help veterans because of the spirit and teamwork of the sport is similar to that of the military. Many veterans struggle with the lack of structure the military provided them once they discharge, so having an outlet can provide stability and a sense of community, Colliton said.
“It transcends hockey and goes back to that core comradeship that friendship that you had in the military that you can’t find sometimes in life outside of this environment,” said Colliton.
State Rep. Ken Gordon, D-Bedford said he believes Massachusetts is the perfect place for Colliton and Bobbish’s idea to thrive.
“This is why Massachusetts is such a great place and I’m not saying this only happens in Massachusetts, but we really care,” Gordon said.
Skate for the 22 currently has 300 members throughout New England. Being a former hockey player is not a prerequisite to join the organization as they have learn-to-skate programs and volunteer opportunities for those who do not wish to skate.
Now having teams set up throughout New England, Skate for the 22 is hoping to expand nationally, not only to help veterans, but spread awareness that 22 veterans take their lives a day – something Colliton believes most people are not aware of.
“Our goal is to take this as far and as wide as we basically can,” he said.
In the meantime, Skate for the 22 holds events and practices for veterans starting in August and ending in May. They hope by having programs such as their own they will be able to save lives and start friendships within the veteran community.
“I see positive impacts on more than 300 people’s lives. I no doubt that Skate for the 22 has saved people’s lives and changed people,” said Colliton
Rep. Gordon, Legislature Repeal Archaic Laws Governing Women’s Reproductive Rights
The Bedford Citizen
Representative Ken Gordon (D-Bedford) recently joined his colleagues in the Legislature to pass legislation repealing unconstitutional laws that impose criminal penalties for such health and family care treatment as abortion and contraception in Massachusetts. With an uncertain future for federal action on landmark reproductive rights, Massachusetts took decisive action to protect the rights for women across the Commonwealth. The bill was signed into law by Governor Charlie Baker on Friday, July 27, 2018
“I was proud to join my colleagues in standing up for the rights of women throughout the Commonwealth as the Legislature passed this bill to protect a woman’s access to reproductive healthcare. That access is put in jeopardy when we leave archaic laws on the books” said Rep. Gordon
Rep. Gordon, Legislature Send Final FY19 Budget to Governor Baker
The Bedford Citizen
Senator Michael Barrett (D-Lexington) and Representative Ken Gordon (D-Bedford) joined their colleagues in the Legislature to send a final version of the Fiscal Year 2019 (FY19) budget to the Governor on Wednesday following a conference committee report submitted on Wednesday morning. In addition to funding important programs and services throughout the Commonwealth, the House FY19 budget included important local aid and Chapter 70 Education funding increases for the Town of Bedford, as well as $517,000 for the education of the children of military families who live at Hanscom Air Force Base.
Bedford received $4,832,310, a $207,668 increase over FY18. Shawsheen Valley Technical High School, which educates Bedford students, received $6,431,361, a $40,110 increase over FY18. In addition, Bedford received $1,186,907, a $40,137 increase over FY18.
“I’m delighted that the Commonwealth has maintained its commitment to Bedford’s residents,” said Gordon. “This budget shows a continued commitment to our state’s priorities and to our cities and towns.”
For the fifth consecutive year, the legislature will contribute to the expenses of the education of students who attend Bedford High School and live at Hanscom. The expenses for these students are not otherwise covered by town taxes. The budget item was a priority for Sen. Barrett, who made sure the commitment was reflected in the Senate budget, and to Rep. Gordon, who filed a successful amendment to the House budget to add the funding. The line item also appears in the governor’s budget, giving the legislators a reason for confidence that it will remain in the FY19 budget.
“In properly reimbursing Bedford for educating the children who live on base,” Senator Barrett said, “the Legislature is acknowledging and strengthening the connection between local public education and military families. We should do no less”.
“I am thrilled that funds were included in the FY19 budget to support so that Bedford can continue to provide a fantastic education to our military students, without the town residents bearing the full financial impact,” said Rep. Gordon.
Rep. Gordon Joins House Colleagues in Support of Addiction Resources Act
Earlier this week, State Representative Ken Gordon joined his colleagues in favor of passing a bill to engage the opioid epidemic.
The House approved the Comprehensive Addiction Resources Emergency (CARE) Act, addressing the issue of opioid addiction in the state of Massachusetts. The CARE Act includes a number of provisions to improve the treatment of opioid addiction and prevent drug abuse. The bill includes prescription reforms to help officials better supervise opioid use, and increases access to anti-opioid overdose drugs such as Naloxone or Narcan.
“This bill with help our residents battling opioid addiction, and keep these dangerous drugs out of the reach of our families,” Rep. Gordon said.
Rep. Gordon Votes in Favor of Legislation to Create Automatic Voter Registration in Massachusetts
The Bedford Citizen
Representative Ken Gordon joined his colleagues in the House to pass legislation creating an efficient and streamlined automatic voter registration (AVR) system, while also protecting the privacy of individuals.
This legislation directs the Secretary of State to work with the Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) and MassHealth to automatically enroll eligible individuals to the Commonwealth’s voter rolls. The Secretary of State will adopt regulations governing the AVR system, including provisions requiring electronic transmission, data security protocols, and integration with online portals.
“This legislation is especially important now given the recent Supreme Judicial Court ruling that certain restrictions on access to the ballot are constitutional. It is important that we remove barriers and allow any person qualified to vote access to the ballot. Above all, we live in a democracy and the right to vote is critical” said Rep. Ken Gordon.
Legislature passes Rep. Gordon’s Bill to Create Paid Family and Medical Leave Program as Part of “Grand Bargain”
The Bedford Citizen
The Massachusetts House and Senate passed a statewide program that will provide a Paid Family and Medical Leave program to most all workers in the Commonwealth, as part of a consolidated bill that will also incrementally raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour over five years and raise the minimum wage for tipped workers to $6.75. The bill will also create a permanent sales tax holiday each August and eliminate the requirement that employers pay their workers time a half on Sundays and holidays.
Rep. Gordon authored much of the Paid Family Leave bill that was incorporated in the package. He spoke about the family leave policy at the State House as 126 House members voted in favor of the bill, to 25 against. In the Senate, the bill passed 30-8.
“We in government like to talk about family values. Here today, in Massachusetts, we are passing a bill that reflects our family values,” said Gordon. “The Paid Family Leave program is designed to keep families together at times of great joy and to allow families to be together at times of great stress and great sorrow. Compare that to what we see coming out of Washington, where for the past few weeks all we’ve heard is excuses for ripping families apart. Once again Massachusetts sets the example”.
The family leave portion of the bill will provide partial wage replacement for up to 12 weeks for workers to care for the birth or adoption of a child, or to care for a hospitalized child, parent, spouse or other specified relative or one who is under constant medical care. It will provide for up to 20 weeks of wage replacement for a worker’s own non-workplace related injury. Lower paid workers will receive a greater wage replacement than higher paid workers.
Rep. Gordon, House Pass Legislation to Temporarily Suspend a Gun License from Those Who Pose a Risk to Themselves or Others
The Bedford Citizen
Representative Ken Gordon(D-Bedford)joined his colleagues in the House to establish a process for family, household members or licensing authorities (petitioners) to petition the court for an Extreme Risk Protection Order (ERPO) for individuals who “pose a risk of causing bodily injury to self or others” by owning, possessing or having a firearm. An ERPO, if issued by the court, is in effect for up to one year and results in the immediate suspension and surrender of all firearms and ammunition.
Licensing authorities are required to provide the recipient of ERPO with a list of services “relating to crisis intervention, mental health, substance abuse and counseling.”
“This is a well-balanced and common sense approach to protecting our residents,” said Representative Ken Gordon.
Rep. Gordon joins House in vote to raise tobacco sales age to 21
Wicked Local Bedford
Rep. Kenneth Gordon joined his colleagues in the Massachusetts House of Representatives to pass legislation that seeks to reduce tobacco use and nicotine addiction among youth across the Commonwealth.
An act to protect youth from the health risks of tobacco and nicotine addiction, H.4479, will prohibit the sale of all tobacco, including nicotine delivery products and other vapor products to individuals under the age of 21. Additionally, the bill expands Massachusetts’ Smoke-Free Workplace Law to include e-cigarettes and vapes, thereby ensuring that all tobacco and vapor products will be banned in establishments where the use of traditional tobacco is currently prohibited.
More than 170 cities and towns in Massachusetts have already raised the minimum sales age for tobacco products to 21 years old. With this legislation, Massachusetts will join five other states who have established a statewide minimum sales age of 21, including California, Hawaii, Maine, New Jersey and Oregon. Needham pioneered this movement in 2005 by becoming the first municipality in the country to raise the tobacco sales age to 21.
“Plenty of research shows at 18 years old our brains may be more susceptible to addiction,” Gordon said. “I’m especially pleased this bill covers e-cigarettes or ‘vaping’ which introduces a sweet tasting and highly addictive form of nicotine attractive to young people.”
Rep. Gordon Joins House to Pass Balanced FY19 Budget
The Bedford Citizen
Representative Ken Gordon (D-Bedford) joined his colleagues in the Massachusetts House of Representatives in passing its budget for the Fiscal Year 2019 (FY19) last week. In addition to local aid, the over $41.065 billion spending bill targets areas such as education, health and human services, housing and homelessness, and veteran services.
In addition to funding important programs and services throughout the Commonwealth, the House FY19 budget included important local aid and Chapter 70 Education funding increases for the Twenty-First Middlesex District.
“I am proud of this fiscally responsible budget that ensures our cities and towns have the resources they need to operate at the highest standard. We are once again following through on our promise to protect local aid and assistance to our schools” said Rep. Gordon.
A $15,000 allocation was included to support renovations at Burlington Council on Aging. “I am happy to see that the House budget includes funding for the Burlington Council on Aging so that Burlington can continue to provide improved services for our seniors,” said Rep. Gordon.
The House appropriated funding pursuant to another Rep. Gordon amendment, which will be used for the education of the children of military families who live on Hansom Air Force Base and attend Bedford Public Schools. Rep. Gordon joined Senator Mike Barrett in the 2015 session to pass a law that requires the Commonwealth to reimburse the town for the education of the military students, but the law is subject to appropriation.
Gov. Baker, Congressman Moulton to join Rep. Gordon in honoring LCpl Travis Desiato and PFC John Hart
The Bedford Citizen
Bedford will kick off Memorial Day this year in a special way, as Gov. Charlie Baker and Congressman Seth Moulton will come to town to honor two fallen heroes, Pfc John Hart and Lance Corporal Travis Desiato, by naming a bridge in their honor. The ceremony will commence at 4 p.m. on Friday, May 25, at the boat launch beside the bridge on State Road 225 that spans the Concord River.
The dedication was arranged by Senator Mike Barrett (D-Lexington) and Rep. Ken Gordon (D-Bedford), who carried the bill dedicating the bridge in honor of these heroes through the legislature. Governor Baker signed the bill into law in December.
The soldiers were killed within 13 months of each other in Iraq, fighting the war on terror. Hart, who served in the Army, lost his life in an ambush in Tikrit on October 18, 2003. He graduated from Bedford High School in 2002. Desiato joined the Marines after his graduation from Bedford High in 2002. He was lost on November 15, 2004, in Fallujah.
“Each year we remember our fallen heroes on Memorial Day, but this year will be special in Bedford,” said Rep. Gordon. “This year we will pause to be with a family and recognize a town that has given so much. As Memorial Day weekend approaches and the tumult of travel begins for some, Bedford will slow down and reflect.”
State Sen. Mike Barrett, D-Lexington, and Rep. Ken Gordon, D-Bedford, both of whom represent Bedford in the state legislature, joined their colleagues in passing criminal justice reform legislation that will lead to a more equitable system that supports young and vulnerable residents, reduces recidivism, increases judicial discretion and enhances public safety.
The bill, an act relative to criminal justice reform, includes many provisions championed by Barrett to address fines and fees that engulf criminal defendants, a problem he has highlighted in his own work. It also includes reforms led by Gordon that allow first-time offenders in some situations to avoid prosecution in a program called Restorative Justice. The legislature also passed an accompanying bill, an act implementing the joint recommendations of the Massachusetts Criminal Justice Review, which is designed to complement the comprehensive criminal justice reform legislation. This bill allows individuals to earn early release by participating in recidivism-reduction programs.
“The compromise states that a defendant may not be incarcerated for failure to pay fees if paying would cause severe hardship,” said Barrett. “People are guaranteed a right to a lawyer at ‘fine time’ hearings and defendants deemed indigent will have an associated $150 fee waived.”
“This compromise legislation takes a measured approach to criminal justice, increasing the penalty for such offenses as trafficking in fentanyl and carfentanil, synthetic opioids that threaten our community, while providing an avenue for people with low-level, non-violent drug offenses to get the help they need,” Gordon said. “It increases the penalties for serial offenders convicted of drunk driving but eliminates mandatory-minimum sentences so that discretion can be restored to judges who preside in our courts.”
Rep. Gordon hits the road for the March for Meal campaign
Representative Ken Gordon, Minuteman Senior Services’ Meals on Wheels Volunteer 1st Lt. John Bennion – Courtesy image (c) 2018 all rights reserved
The Bedford Citizen
Representative Ken Gordon prepares to deliver meals to homebound seniors in Bedford for Minuteman Senior Services’ Meals on Wheels Program, a valuable community service that provides a safety check and friendly visit as well as a nutritious meal.
Community Champions nationwide are volunteering their time this month in an outreach effort designed to draw attention to senior hunger in our communities, to recruit volunteer drivers and to raise needed funds.
Call toll-free 888-222-6171 for more information or to volunteer to be a Meals on Wheels Driver.
Testimony: Rep. Gordon testifies on bill to address sexual harassment in the workplace
By Elisha Machado
March 12, 2018
The “Me Too” movement is sparking state governments across the nation to take action against sexual harassment. Massachusetts lawmakers hope to reduce instances of sexual harassment in the workplace through a bill filed by Majority Leader Cynthia Creem, (D) Newton.
Sexual harassment in the workplace is illegal but instances often never get reported and some offenders escape detection through confidentiality agreements. Creem said the legislation aims to ensure repeat harassers can not hide behind confidentiality agreements.
“Many people find that if they do come forward, they’re not believed, they’re ridiculed, their potential for future employment becomes reduced,” State Rep. Kenneth Gordon, (D) Bedford, said.
Rep. Gordon talks transportation with the Planning Board
By MARK BIAGIOTTI
BURLINGTON – State Rep. Kenneth Gordon (D-Bedford) recently visited the Planning Board to update them on the state of transportation in Burlington.
Rep. Gordon’s district includes Burlington.
As Rep. Gordon said to the start discussion, he was in front of the planners to update them on the state of transportation and how it’s affecting Massachusetts and Burlington.
He started off by detailing the “bad news” which chiefly focused on the lack of money available for transportation projects.
“We have been dealing with a deficit with the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) Operating Budget for a while,” informed Rep, Gordon. “Large amounts of money are hard to come by, but [Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker] is continuing to look into it.”
Rep. Gordon mentioned the “new transportation plan” devised by the White House limits the amount of funds for industrialized states, which includes Massachusetts. As has always been the case, the Federal Government grants autonomy to states to run their transportation programs.
Rep. Gordon, Sen. Creem File Bills to Support AG in Sexual Harassment and Discrimination Cases
The Bedford Citizen
The Attorney General will receive increased power to investigate and enforce Massachusetts’ sexual harassment and discrimination laws, and clouds of secrecy will be lifted in cases involving serial harassers, if identical bills filed by Representative Kenneth Gordon (D-Bedford) and Senator Cynthia Stone Creem (D-Newton) are passed.
“Many of us want to get to the bottom of allegations involving multiple instances of harassment. We are frustrated by confidential settlements that prevent victims from telling their story,” said Gordon. “However, victims often rely on these agreements as a tool to resolve their claims short of a public trial and we don’t want to interfere with their ability to address the emotional and financial harm they have suffered.These bills propose a way to figure out how to discover who is engaged in serial harassment without upsetting the rights of victims to resolve their cases”.
“The MCAD does a good job handling matters involving one-time harassment and discrimination cases, and this bill leaves those cases alone. However, if the MCAD credits more than one charge against an alleged harasser in the relevant window of time, the findings will be made available to the public. That means that after even one credited allegation the accused person has to be wary of any future allegation, since a public record will be created. That record will follow the alleged harasser, as it will be subject to review by any future victim, and available for any future job interview.”
Rep. Gordon Invites Applications for Summer Internships at the State House
The Bedford Citizen
Representative Ken Gordon is accepting applications for college level internships in his office during Summer 2018. Internships at the State House are unpaid.
While each internship is unique and largely reflects the interests of the intern, the following provides a broad outline of the program:
Summer internships run from mid-June to the first week of August
Interns will work from the State House 2-3 days per week
Summer interns have the opportunity to attend daily briefings given by Massachusetts political, non-profit, and business leaders
Responsibilities include but are not limited to:
Assisting staff in legislative matters:
Drafting letters of support for bills the Rep. has co-sponsored
Attending legislative briefings
Executing a long-term research project:
Interns will select a policy area of interest to research. The project summarizes a problem, explores possible solutions (including other states’ solutions or international solutions) and proposes a solution for Massachusetts. Meaningful final projects are between 6-10 written pages or an equivalent presentation. Past examples include work on driverless cars, water permitting, transportation within the Rep’s district, health programs in prisons, and the opioid crisis.
Interns will meet with Representative Gordon on a weekly basis to discuss their project
Gov. Baker Signs Bill Introduced by Gordon, Barrett to Rename Bedford Bridge after Two Soldiers Who Fell in Iraq
Wicked Local Bedford
The bridge on Carlisle Road spanning the Concord River will be re-named this Memorial Day, dedicated in honor of two Bedford natives who died serving in Iraq.
Pfc. John Hart and Lance Cpl. Travis Desiato were both graduates of Bedford High School and were killed in the line of duty in Iraq. On Friday, Dec. 22 state representative Ken Gordon, D-Bedford, and state senator Mike Barrett, D-Lexington, announced that next Memorial Day, the bridge on Carlisle Road will be dedicated and named after the two men. Gordon and Barrett filed the bill and Gov. Charlie Baker signed the bill last week.
“We are a town of 14,500 people, and we had two heroes who knew each other, die in action less than 15 months apart,” Gordon said. “During the Memorial Day ceremony in 2017 I spoke with the families of both men and they were talking about a way to honor the men, and I thought it was a great idea. Since I’m a state representative I knew we could do something on a state road, so we decided to dedicate a bridge.”
Rep. Ken Gordon Joins House on Legislation to Support and Honor Military Veterans
The Bedford Citizen
Rep. Ken Gordon joined his colleagues in the House of Representatives to pass two bills to support Massachusetts’ veterans. “This legislation is a small but important step toward showing gratitude for the sacrifice of our veterans,” said Rep. Gordon.
“I am immensely proud that Massachusetts ranks first in the nation when it comes to military-benefit programs and services,” House Speaker Robert A. DeLeo said. “This legislation sends a message to our heroes and their families that we appreciate their bravery, sacrifice, and service. While these two bills are small steps, the House is continuing its work in providing critical and well-deserved supports.”
Under legislation passed by the House, every municipality in the Commonwealth will now designate one parking space at its town or city hall as “veterans-only parking.”
The House also took action to enable municipalities to more easily collect donations for their Veterans Memorial and Patriotic Celebration Funds. This legislation allows cities and towns to include a check-off box on municipal tax or motor vehicle excise tax bills through which residents can pledge donations to be used for the creation and restoration of monuments and other activities that honor the contributions and sacrifices of local veterans.
Rep. Gordon Leads Bipartisan Effort in Push for Gas Industry Reforms
Wicked Local Burlington
State Rep. Ken Gordon, D-Bedford, led a group of 125 state legislators who have signed onto bipartisan testimony calling for the passage of legislation to permanently protect consumers and the environment from risks associated with gas pipeline expansion.
Though now suspended, Kinder Morgan’s Northeast Energy Direct pipeline and Enbridge’s Access Northeast proposal each threatened conservation efforts, private property and Massachusetts’ climate goals. In 2016, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruled the project’s primary financial mechanism, a “pipeline tax” on electric ratepayers, was illegal and placed consumers with a significant burden that would otherwise be borne by investors. Pipeline proponents are currently seeking to amend Massachusetts law to enable the pipeline tax. A House letter circulated by Gordon; state Rep. Stephen Kulik, D-Worthington; and Minority Leader Bradley Jones, R-North Reading, garnered 100 signatures, while a concurrent Senate letter circulated by state Sens. Pat Jehlen, D-Somerville, and Jamie Eldridge, D-Acton, has 20 signers.
“It’s very simple, ratepayers should not be forced to assume the financial responsibility and environmental risk associated with paying for pipelines that a majority of our constituents do not want,” said Gordon.
Gordon, House Pass Legislation Banning Bump Stocks
Wicked Local Burlington
State Rep. Ken Gordon, D-Bedford, joined his colleagues in the Massachusetts House of Representatives to pass an amendment sponsored by state Rep. David Linsky, D-Natick, to the 2017 Supplemental Budget banning the sale, purchase or ownership of a bump stock device.
“I was proud to join with almost every member of the Legislature in voting to ban this dangerous equipment in Massachusetts,” said Gordon. “Our job in government is to keep us safe and this is an important step in making sure that this type of device it’s not used in our state to harm our residents.”
Wicked Local Burlington LETTER: A student’s vote for Ken Gordon
Thursday Posted Oct 6, 2016 at 12:36 PM | Updated Oct 6, 2016 at 12:40 PM
Long before I set foot in the Massachusetts State House as a legislative intern this summer, I knew the name and face of the man I’d be working with. Politics were on the periphery of my life, but this elected official was not— I already knew Rep. Ken Gordon, D-Bedford, to be a part of his district’s fabric, to be a visible leader that everyone could look up to. As early as my middle school graduation, I could see that Gordon embodied the democratic spirit of working from and for his constituents. His frequent appearances and participation at school and town events cemented his place in my mind as a politician whose first priority was not his party or his politics, but his people and their well-being. Massachusetts’s strength in our challenging economic and social landscape stems from the tireless efforts of officials like Gordon to put their constituents’ needs first.
And indeed, how tireless his efforts are. During my tenure in his office, the representative would have me and my fellow interns research a wide range of issues faced by communities all around Massachusetts, from the recent opioid scourge, to higher education access programs, as well as anticipating future challenges, like the integration of driverless cars into existing infrastructure, all to stay up to date on problems facing Massachusetts residents. No matter how diverse the issues were, however, Gordon would always tackle them from his district’s perspective, developing unique solutions and resources to help ensure that the 21st Middlesex district was ready to meet the bevy of challenges facing Massachusetts communities today.
In a time of uncertainty and political gridlock in Washington, D.C., officials like Gordon helped revive this apathetic student’s faith in the effectiveness of civic institutions. I never worked for Gordon— I worked with him, because his work ethic is one of fostering inclusive, co-operative solutions to problems that affect a wide range of people. His is an M.O. of civil service in the truest sense of the term, and American democracy is all the better for it.
— Pranav Menon, Burlington High School, Class of 2014
Wicked Local Burlington LETTER: Ken Gordon is a ‘shining light’ seniors
As a senior citizen, I am most interested and concerned about the race for State Representative. Ken Gordon has been a shining light for us seniors – he meets with us at the senior center or at True North every month to listen to our concerns and to explain his vision for Burlington. He not only does this at election time, he has done it every month for four years. Issues that affect seniors every day: Traffic: Ken worked to get $800,000 from the U.S. Department of Transportation to help eliminate the traffic congestion at the intersection of Route 3 and Route 95. Access to Public Transportation: Ken has worked closely with the Middlesex 3 coalition which has been bringing shuttle bus service to our businesses for their employees. Once enough of these shuttles are on the road the plan is to make them available to residents, including seniors. This will be a big help to those of us who do not drive. Senior Housing: Ken arranged a forum on the issue of senior housing, bringing in several speakers to discuss this ever-growing need in our town. He fought for and will continue to fight to get state funds for programs that will help seniors stay in their homes avoiding the expense of nursing homes or assisted-living facilities.
Council on Aging: The COA funding was increased by about $50,000 this year. Ken worked to get this done for us. We all know that our senior center can use some updating and Ken will continue to work for State funding for this purpose.
What I really like most about Ken is that he is readily available to take telephone calls, to listen to us seniors and to offer solutions to our issues. He may not have all the answers but he’ll get them and return our calls.
I am urging all seniors and those who have not yet become seniors to join with me to re-elect Ken Gordon as our State Representative.
There are two kinds of legislators on Beacon Hill. Some show up just to talk, some to act. Some wave their fist in righteous indignation as opportunities pass them by; others sit down with colleagues, discuss their differences and get things done.
In my four years in the Legislature I have focused on solving problems rather than making speeches about them. I have listened to your concerns, and addressed them. That is why I enter the coming election season with the momentum of accomplishment. In the past two years, they include the following:
Posted: Thursday, July 14, 2016 10:29 am | Updated: 10:30 am, Thu Jul 14, 2016.
BURLINGTON – Representative Ken Gordon (D-Bedford), whose district represents Burlington, secured funding for the Middlesex 3 Coalition to administer a shuttle to transport employees from Lowell to retail and restaurant jobs in Bedford and Burlington as a part of the House’s Economic Development Bill.
In recent years, the number of restaurants servicing the residents and businesses of Bedford and Burlington has flourished, due in part to the influx of new companies with impressive workforces…
Posted Jul. 11, 2016 at 2:23 PM By Rep. Ken Gordon, D-Bedford
Last Friday, the day the news of the horrific sniper attack in Dallas woke us from our sleep, I joined Middlesex County Sheriff Peter Koutoujian and Burlington’s assistant police chief Tom Duffy at the graduation of the Sheriff Department’s Youth Public Safety Academy.
Some 50 excited elementary school-aged children, half from Burlington, completed a one-week program that introduced them to the members of the sheriff’s department and the police and fire departments of their town…
Boston Globe Reports on Ken’s Efforts to Address Traffic in our District.
June 12, 2016 After convening a forum involving engineers from MassDOT to discuss the traffic in December, Rep. Gordon joined with Senator Ken Donnelly and convinced Secretary Stephanie Pollack to include traffic improvements to the intersection of Routes 128 and 3 in a federal highway project. Work will begin by the end of the year…
THE FEDERAL HIGHWAY ADMINISTRATION recently approved a set of short-term improvements to the interchange of Interstate 95/Route 128 and Route 3 at Exit 32, which will result in a re-striping and widening of small strips of Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) land along the highway. The improvements will create dedicated lanes with the use of signage, lane striping, and lane barriers. State Senator Ken Donnelly (l) and Representative Ken Gordon (r), both of whom represent Burlington in their districts, championed the efforts by bringing the proposal to MassDOT engineers last December when they hosted a forum on the traffic issues facing Burlington drivers…
Rep. Ken Gordon to host charity event, senior forum
June 23, 2016 The Skate for the 22 Foundation and State Rep. Ken Gordon will join in a charity ice hockey game against the New England Eagles Veterans’ Hockey Club to raise awareness about the struggles veterans face when returning home at 7 p.m. May 13 at Ristuccia Memorial Arena, 190 Main St., Wilmington.
Students Proudly Walk the Runway Thanks to Rep. Ken Gordon
June 3, 2016 On Tuesday May 31 the State House filled with young artists and fashion designers! I was delighted to see students who work so hard all year honored with a show that highlighted their hard work and properly showed what public school education is producing and was spectacular…
Rep. Gordon’s Paid Family & Medical Leave Bill One Step Closer To Law
May 23, 2016 BOSTON, MA — Rep. Ken Gordon’s efforts to bring paid family and medical leave to workers and small business throughout the Commonwealth took a big step forward last week when his bill passed with unanimous approval from the Joint Committee on Labor and Workforce Development…
U.S. Secretary of Labor Met With Rep. Ken Gordon on Paid Family Leave Bill
May 2, 2016 A proposed Massachusetts House bill that will help new parents spend more time with their children was the focus of a meeting that featured a member of President Obama’s cabinet.
Representative Ken Gordon, the sponsor of the House bill to bring paid family and medical leave to all workers in Massachusetts, was joined U.S. Labor Secretary Tom Perez, Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey, Co-Chairman of the Joint Committee Labor and Workforce Development John Scibak (D-South Hadley), and Senate Co-Sponsor Karen Spilka (D-Ashland) at Cambridge startup Tamr to discuss the issues surrounding the proposed program, a release from Gordon’s office states…
MassDOT holds detailed session with residents on Rt. 3/128 interchange
Dec. 30, 2015 THERE WAS A FULL HOUSE at Town Hall recently for State Rep. Ken Gordon’s special “Rappin’ with the Rep” show where a public information session was held with Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) engineers to discuss the four plans they provided Rep. Gordon on behalf of the town last summer to revise the exit and entrance ramps that connect Route 3 to I-95/Route 128. This was the first time MassDOT officials were able to explain the designs to the public, in addition to providing a platform for resident to ask questions…
Muslims hold interfaith event to ‘re-tag’ Burlington mosque
Nov. 4, 2015 For the fourth time in five years, Munir Gandevia and the Islamic Center of Burlington were left reeling after another incident of vandalism, each one of them larger in scale than the last. Early Sunday morning members found an entire wall of the mosque covered with eggs and red spray-paint that read “USA.”
This Just In: Rep. Gordon Delivers Important News that MassDOT Salt Shed is No Longer in Bedford’s Future
January 26, 2105
The Massachusetts Department of Transportation has abandoned its plan to relocate its existing Crosby Drive salt shed to the cloverleaf at the intersection of Routes 3 and 62, according to a letter from Thomas J. Tinlin, Massachusetts Department of Transportation Chief of Highway Operations and Maintenance, that State Rep. Ken Gordon delivered to Chairman Margot Fleischman at the Selectmen’s 6 pm meeting on Monday, January 26, 2015.