State Representative Dave Rogers

UPDATES

Election Round Up


Thank You! On Tuesday, November 4th the people of the 24th Middlesex District reelected me to serve a second term in the Massachusetts House of Representatives. Serving Arlington, Belmont, and Cambridge continues to be a great honor, a chance to make a real difference in people’s lives and a lot of fun. Although I did not have an opponent, during the campaign season I still made a point of getting out into the community at a wide range of events and also went door-to-door in a number of our neighborhoods. I always intend to stay close to the people I represent and I am grateful for each and every vote. By my estimation, my first term was productive. In fact, as I have written to you before, this was a productive term for the Massachusetts Legislature generally. I look forward to getting back to work for the residents of Arlington, Belmont, and Cambridge and the Commonwealth as a whole.

The results of the election predictably left Massachusetts politics somewhat changed, in addition to giving us a chance to take stock in where we are and what we face going forward. Here are a few of my thoughts on the results:
  • Charlie Baker’s defeat of Martha Coakley was narrow and hardly a mandate for a radical departure from the kind of progressive, forward-thinking governance we expect here in Massachusetts. I hope very much that Governor-Elect Baker reaches out and finds ways to work effectively with our Democratic Legislature and I believe he will. Where I am in agreement with him, I will certainly look to work constructively with the new Governor to get things done. And when I feel he is trying to steer us in a direction we should not go, you can count on me to make a stand.
  • I believe that the ballot question that de-indexed the gas tax from inflation is an unfortunate turn of events. The indexing of the gas tax was a critical part of the transportation finance package, and one I took a very tough vote to help make happen. The planning for state–wide infrastructure investments was based on the revenue from indexing the gas tax. Now, those capital spending plans will have to be revised, to be less ambitious in scope precisely at a time when we should be doing more to stay competitive with other states and, in this increasingly inter-connected world, with other countries. The roughly $500 million revenue package was already insufficient to fully ensure needed transportation infrastructure investments over the coming decades. The hard truth is that, sometime in the not too distant future, I believe that we are going to need to do more to invest in this lifeblood of our economy.
  • It turns out that Massachusetts voters believe that sick time is a right to which all who work should be entitled. Although many people in America are still denied this right, the people of Massachusetts searched their consciences and did the right thing. Once again we are one of the first states in the nation (joining only California and Connecticut) to adopt a key provision to protect the people living and working in our state. With luck, others will follow.
Once again, I am proud and tremendously grateful for the opportunity you have given to me to serve as your State Representative in the Massachusetts House. I could not ask for a more caring, engaged, and intelligent constituency, and that makes my job a joy and an honor.
 

The Coming Session


January 2015 marks the beginning of a new legislative session, my second in office. A new session comes with some changes and some opportunities. The coming session will be both Governor-Elect Baker’s and new Senate President Stan Rosenberg’s first in office, two new leaders for Massachusetts who will seek to make an impact. A new slate of legislation will be filed, providing legislators with the opportunity to make suggestions for how to improve our Commonwealth. I am currently working on the legislation I plan to file and will be focusing in part on criminal justice reform. A number of new legislators have joined the House and Senate, providing fresh insight and a slightly new balance to the Legislature. Finally, I may find myself moving offices and changing committees, potentially affording me the opportunity to develop expertise in and lend my voice to new areas of public policy. This past session I have served as a member of the Joint Committees on Housing, Health Care Financing, and Municipalities and Regional Government. I look forward to the coming two years and to lending my efforts to what should prove to be another productive legislative session for Massachusetts Government.
 

Receiving Honors from the Massachusetts Rivers Alliance


I am proud to report that, on the evening of Thursday, December 4th at the Habitat Education Center and Wildlife Sanctuary in Belmont, I will be recognized at the Massachusetts Rivers Alliance Annual Meeting for my work on behalf of Massachusetts’ Rivers. The recognition is in particular due to my work spearheading the effort to increase funding for the Department of Environmental Protection and for my work to protect the Sustainable Water Management Initiative. Our rivers (and all of our environment) are indispensable to our quality of life, our economy and our health, and protecting them is paramount. This recognition is an honor and I look forward to continuing my work to protect our waterways and other facets of the environment in the Commonwealth.

Community Events

Public Meeting on Airplane Noise


Many of you have become aware that airplane noise has become a quality of life issue for a number of Belmont, Arlington, and Cambridge residents, as well as those in neighboring communities (Watertown in particular). I have joined with many of my colleagues at the state, federal, and local levels in working to find some accommodation for those who have been adversely affected by the new flight patterns. The new flight patterns are the product of a new Federal Aviation Administration initiative “Route Area Navigation (RNAV)”. As such, efforts to affect change in these federally designated flight patterns will be challenging. At 7:00 p.m. this Wednesday, December 3rd, there will be a public meeting to discuss airplane noise at the Beech Street Center in Belmont. Joining me in attendance will be officials from Belmont and Watertown, as well as Representative Jon Hecht, Senator Will Brownsberger, and staff from Congresswoman Katherine Clark’s office. I hope many of you will attend to learn about our work on this issue and share your experiences, so we can more accurately press your concerns.

Annual Belmont Tree Lighting


The annual tree lighting in Belmont Center, hosted by the Belmont Center Business Association, will be held on the evening of Thursday, December 4th. The tree lighting is a fantastic family event that is great for kids and, in the moment when the lights turn on, quite beautiful.

Cambridge Democratic City Committee Holiday Party


Join the Cambridge Democratic City Committee for its annual Holiday Party on the evening of Friday, December 5th. The party will be held from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at the Cambridge Citywide Senior Center. Please bring a dish to share!

Arlington First Lights


The Arlington Chamber of Commerce will host the annual First Lights event from Friday, December 5th to Sunday, December 7th. On the evening of December 5th at 6:30 p.m. in Arlington Center there will be a tree lighting followed by caroling. Saturday, December 6th will feature two trolleys carrying shoppers up and down Mass Ave. Come out to see fellow members of the community and to enjoy the special First Light promotions offered by many of the shops along Mass Ave!

Annual Gifts of Hope Telethon


Each year the Belmont Media Center and Belmont Citizen-Herald team up to support the Belmont Food Pantry by way of their Gifts of Hope Telethon. This year’s Gifts of Hope Telethon will take place on Saturday, December 6th from 12:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m at the Belmont Media Center. I will be participating from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m., but please stop by or tune in (the telethon will be live on local channels: Comcast 8,9, and 96 as well Verizon 28, 29, and 30). You can also stream the telethon live at the Belmont Media Center website. As always, talented performers and helping hands are needed. Find out how to participate or help out here!
 

Friends of Spy Pond Annual Meeting


The Friends of Spy Pond will be holding their annual meeting on Sunday, December 7th starting at 5:00 p.m. at the Jefferson Cutter House. The meeting will be a potluck dinner and will feature landscape architect Carol R. Johnson as well as a review of 2014 accomplishments, an election of a new slate of officers, and the setting of 2015 goals.

Sustainable Belmont Planning Meeting


Join Sustainable Belmont for a planning meeting on Wednesday, December 3rd at 7:00 p.m. in the Assembly Room of the Belmont Public Library. You can RSVP yes or no, and if you cannot attend have the opportunity to offer comment on the question of Sustainable Belmont’s organizing principle: “helping Belmont become and environmentally responsible community.”

Contact Me


I welcome your input and hope to hear from you on issues of mutual concern. Email: rep.dave.rogers@gmail.com. State House office phone: 617-722-2400. Personal cell phone: 617-817-9395. Website: repdaverogers.com.

December Office Hours


I will hold office hours at the following times and places during December. I encourage any and all to stop by and speak with me about any concerns or to offer any input you might have.

Tuesday, December 2nd from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. at the Beech Street Center in Belmont (266 Beech Street, Belmont, MA 02478).

Tuesday, December 9th from 4:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. at the Kickstand Café in Arlington (594 Mass Ave, Arlington, MA 02476).

Saturday, December 20th from 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at Dunkin' Donuts in North Cambridge (2480 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA 02140).

Saturday, December 20th from 2:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. at Bruegger’s Bagels in Belmont (41 Leonard Street, Belmont, MA 02478).

You can also always contact me at any time in my office at 617 722 2400 or at dave.rogers@mahouse.gov.
 

Talk on Coastal Ecosystems and Climate Change


On Wednesday, December 17 at 6:30 p.m. the Belmont Media Center will host a talk on Coastal Ecosystems and Climate Change featuring Brian Helmuth, PhD, Professor, Department of Marine and Environmental Sciences and School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs; Director, Sustainability Science and Policy Initiative, Northeastern University. Dr. Helmuth will explain how the health of those ecosystems determines the vitality of the planet, and what the public can do to help restore these bio-communities that are severely impacted by climate change, contaminants and development.

Other Events


You can also look at the town and city calendars for Arlington, Belmont, and Cambridge to find out about more town meetings and community events.

Social Media


I am glad to have already connected with many of you on Facebook. Due to the limitations on personal Facebook pages, however, I plan to start to do more of my political and community outreach from my political page. Please like my official State Representative page here. You can also follow me on twitter to find out more about my representation of the 24th Middlesex District.
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