Thursday, November 23, 2017

Carbon Pricing

     Massachusetts has to reduce emissions from the fossil fuels, oil, coal and gas. These emissions cause global warming. We are facing a deadline we will not meet. The 2008 Global Warming Solutions Act calls for reduced emissions. The goal for 2020 is 25% less than the 1990 level. It is unlikely we can meet that deadline.
     We are also behind in meeting the deadline for 2050. That deadline is an 80% reduction in emissions from fossil fuels. Other countries use a plan called "carbon pollution pricing". This plan is reducing global warming pollution emissions around the world.
     The state legislature is proposing two bills on carbon pricing. Senator Mike Barret is the sponsor of bill S.1821. Representative Jennifer Benson is the sponsor of the second bill, H.1726. Altogether, there are 79 sponsors. That would be almost a quarter of the legislature.
     These bills put a tax on coal, oil or gas that is imported into Massachusetts. The state would rebate all or part of the revenues back to state residents and businesses. Everyone would get an incentive to reduce fossil fuel use in order to keep more of their rebates.
    One of the bills would set aside some of the revenues for a Green Infrastructure Fund. This bill would help municipalities pay for energy efficiency, clean energy, and climate resiliency projects. These bills would reduce air pollution. Bay State residents would be healthier.
    Each year Massachusetts spends over 20 billion dollars on fossil fuels. Both bills would help us keep more of that $20 billion.  Eventually we will grow our own renewable energy businesses. That means more good jobs for our residents.
     Governor Baker recently voiced his support for the Paris Accord. His key interest is the emissions reductions targets. Most economists agree that putting a price on carbon pollution is the single most effective way to help us meet those targets. It would encourage shifting to cleaner, more reliable renewable energy systems.  We do not have time to wait. Let us put a price on carbon pollution now.

Fair Taxes - How money is distributed in USA

Distribution of Wealth

Wealth inequality in the United States. In Wikepedia retrieved 11/23/17, from

One person pays $40
19 pay $2.80
80 pay $0.09

More recently, in 2017, an Oxfam study found that eight rich people, six of them Americans, own as much combined wealth as half the human race.[10][11][12]

     What is a fair way to assess taxes? Suppose a company of 100 people goes out for holiday coffee. These people represent how America's wealth is distributed. They decide to split the bill according to how much wealth they have. Assume the total bill was $100. One person would pay $40. Nineteen would pay $2.80. The remaining 80 would pay only $.09 each.

     Reference information came from Wikipedia, Wealth inequality in the United States.

Sunday, November 12, 2017


Jay Morrison
Nov 11 (1 day ago)

to me
Hi Steve,  I called you as a part of EMIT (End Mass Incarceration Together).  The Senate already passed an "omnibus" bill on October 27th.  The House bill is not as strong as the Senate bill, so we are asking that people call Lori not only to support the H.4011, but also amendments to that bill as well. The house debate is scheduled to start on Monday 11/13, but I don't know if they will get to it by then. Lori's phone is 617-722-2810 and email:  Thanks for your interest! Jay Morrison

Thursday, November 9, 2017

How an Idea Becomes a Law

SUBJECT: Civics. History or Government

TITLE: How Citizens Can Influence What Laws Are Passed
(This lesson gives students a chance to use what they learned about government)


  1. Learn the steps in how laws are made
  2. Learn how to use the hearings and events website
  3. Learn how to find my legislator


How an Idea Becomes a Law
Below is an explanation of how an idea becomes a law in Massachusetts.

Step 1: Proposal

Step 2: Petition is filed

Step 3: Hearing is Held and Testimony Heard
The committee holds a public hearing and hears testimony regarding the petition from the public, government officials and office holders. After the hearing is held, the committee issues a report recommending whether the petition “ought to pass”, “ought not to pass”, be subject to further study or discharged to another committee.

Hearings and Events

Sunday, November 5, 2017

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

three for governor

Setti Warren

Bob Massie

Jay Gonzalez

fletcher method

Letter to President Gentile About Student Involvement at NSCC

Steven Levy, BS Mechanical Engineering, MBA
26 Sagamore Road, Marblehead, MA 01945-2129

October 31, 2017

Patricia A. Gentile, Ed.D., President
North Shore Community College
1 Ferncroft Road
Danvers, MA 01923

Subject: Student Involvement Civics Project

Dear President Gentile,

Is there a teacher at your school who would be interested in a civics project on legislation?

Student Benefits:
  • Learn about government
  • Feel empowered, become involved with the governance process
  • More likely to vote
  • Help the school and other students

What the students could do:
  • Pick bills they would like to promote, possibly bills about education
  • Write emails, make calls
  • Attend a hearing locally or the statehouse, give testimony
  • Visit their representative and/or senator

My background:
  • Registering new voters at NSCC
  • Active in environmental work
  • Give testimony and lobby for bills at the state house
  • Former engineer and teacher
  • Give brief talks to students about the importance of voting
  • GED tutor and teacher in math

I could help them with each step.


Steven Levy

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