Budget week begins – Muni health at heart of debate – DiMasi trial kicks off – Lantigua troubles deepen

Welcome to Budget Week

The opening salvos of this year’s budget debate are imminent (AP). Provisions granting municipalities greater control over employee health care (WBUR) are expected to be at the heart of the battle, which begins in the House at noon today. The Salem News takes a look at the divisions in the House over the health care plan.

DiMASI: Across the harbor, the corruption trial of former House Speaker Sal DiMasi is also set to begin today (Sun). The Herald sets the tone for the "drawn-out, complicated trial."

LANTIGUA: Lawrence Mayor William Lantigua didn’t have a super great weekend, as it was revealed that he is the subject of federal and state probes (Globe). He denies any wrongdoing (Eagle Trib.) as city officials call for his resignation (Eagle Trib) and/or possible recall (Herald).

BUDGET/HEALTH CARE:
Health insurance debate looms in Massachusetts House | AP
Municipal Health Proposal Key As House Begins Budget Debate | WBUR: feeds.wbur.org
Advocates plan campaign on immigrants health care – AP: news.google.com
Changes to health care split area reps » Local News » SalemNews.com, Salem, MA : www.go

STATE/MISC. NEWS:
Most mall escalators lack full state inspections – The Boston Globe: www.boston.com
Worcester Telegram & Gazette – telegram.com – Special tax status sought for company: www.telegram.com
State targets boating discharge | CapeCodOnline.com: www.capecodonline.com
For Obama team, a Mass. touch – The Boston Globe: www.boston.com
Patrick pick for Mass. high court to face council – AP: www.google.com
Cuts go too far, agency says – The Boston Globe: news.google.com

DiMASI:
Tough justice expected for Sal DiMasi – BostonHerald.com: bostonherald.com
DiMasi trial will pull back curtain on behind-the-scenes power – Lowell Sun Online: www.lowellsun.com

LANTIGUA:
Mayor denies wrongdoing in face of corruption probe » Merrimack Valley » EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA : www.eagletribune.com
Councilor calls for Lantigua to "step aside" pending probe’s outcome » Merrimack Valley » EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA
William Lantigua recall premature – BostonHerald.com: www.bostonherald.com
Lawrence Mayor Denies Corruption Allegations | AP: feeds.wbur.org
Lantigua is focus of federal, state probe – Boston.com: www.google.com
William Lantigua ties add to Gov. Deval Patricks latest woes – BostonHerald.com: www.google.com

LEGISLATURE:
Poirier organizing fundraiser for quake victims – The Sun Chronicle Online – News: www.thesunchronicle.com
Spilka pushing for further delay of MPO vote – – WickedLocal.com: www.wickedlocal.com

GAMBLING:
In Bay State Casino Debate, Nothing Is As It Seems – Banker & Tradesman: www.bankerandtradesman.com

LOCAL HEADLINES:
Patrick can’t attend Mansfield Green summit – The Sun Chronicle Online – News: www.thesunchronicle.com
Surprising wins in Wilmington elections – Lowell Sun Online: www.lowellsun.com

BEST OF THE BLOGS/OPINON:
Dems can beat Scott Brown in 12 ­ heres how – BostonHerald.com: www.bostonherald.com
Expect debate on the budget to be study in Dem bullying – BostonHerald.com: www.bostonherald.com

AROUND NEW ENGLAND:
ME Lawmakers face final weeks with big workload | The Portland Press Herald / Maine Sunday Telegram : www.pressherald.com
RI Political scene: Legislative leaders meeting requested for Tuesday | Politics | projo.com | The Providence Journal : www.projo.com
CT Double-Dipping: Many Retired State Employees Still Collect Pensions And Paychecks – Courant.com: www.courant.com
NH State plans scoresheet for disabled | Concord Monitor: www.concordmonitor.com
VT Lawmaker calls for tough law against VY – Brattleboro Reformer: www.reformer.com

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