Five Things: Humason Announces, 2nd Hampden and Hampshire #s, Techies Put Dems in Sights, & more.

Don Humason (R-Westfield) announces run for the 2nd Hampden and Hampshire Senate Seat

On the heels of the announcement by Senator Mike Knapik (R-Westfield) that he is resigning, his former aide, Don Humason, has announced he is going to run for the seat.   MassLive.com has the story.

Rep. Donald F. Humason said he definitely will be running to succeed Knapik and assume his unexpired term. The two-year position would also again be up for election in November 2014.

Several possible Democratic candidates include Rep. Aaron Vega of Holyoke, City Treasurer Jon D. Lumbra and Patrick B. Beaudry, a former legislative aide from Holyoke.

Westfield City Councilor Brian Sullivan, a Democrat, is also being mentioned, but he could not be immediately reached on Monday.

Humason has $5,387 on hand according to the Office of Campaign and Political Finance.

The Hampden and Hampshire District leans GOP for Special Elections

During the last two special elections the Hampden and Hampshire district, recently vacated by Michael Knapik (R-Westfield) has leaned Republican.  

The district encompasses: Second Hampden and Hampshire — Consisting of the cities of Chicopee, ward 7, precincts A and B, ward 8, precinct A, ward 9, precinct A, Holyoke and Westfield and the towns of Agawam, Granville, Montgomery, Russell, Southwick and Tolland, in the county of Hampden; and the towns of Easthampton and Southampton in the county of Hampshire.

Scott Brown won the district with over 56% of the vote in the 2010 special election and won all but two of the municipalities.  Including the precincts in Chicoppee that are in the district.

In addition Gabriel Gomez won the district by a little over 54%.  He also won all but two municipalities.  This is a winnable race.    

Carol Claros to Lyons Barn

Jim Lyons is hosting a fundraiser this evening for Carol Claros, who is running for State Representative in Worcester. This evening.  The event will be held at the Lyons Barn.

Tech Industry says its time for industry to get politically active.

The Boston Globe’s Tech Business columnist says it is time for the tech sector to get politically active.  This is because of the blindside they got with the tex tax.  It is well worth reading.

Back in March, I had a chance to interview Governor Deval Patrick on stage at a Boston hotel, in front of several hundred tech workers. The Massachusetts innovation economy, he boasted, was “one of the reasons why we are growing jobs faster than most other states,” and why the state had regained all the jobs lost in the recent recession.

Earlier that month, a group of legislators led by state Senator Karen Spilka, Democrat of Ashland, formed the Tech Hub Caucus, to help “shine a spotlight on tech’s far-reaching economic importance,” according to the press release announcing it.

But last week, Beacon Hill threw tech under a truck. On Wednesday, with exactly seven days’ notice, a law went into effect requiring anyone in the business of providing “computer system design services” in Massachusetts to collect the 6.25 percent sales tax from their in-state customers.

And what exactly does “computer system design services” mean? It isn’t yet crisply defined, but it may cover everything from the contractor who loads Microsoft Office onto the PCs at your office, to the person who builds a mobile app using open source components, to the team of consultants who customizes an Oracle database.

Later in the article he calls on the Tech Industry to get politically active.  

MassGOP lashes out at MBTA Pension Secrecy

The Boston Herald has a story about the MassGOP highlighting that the MBTA is flagrantly ignoring a law meant to get at what the actual pension costs for the agency are.  

The new gas tax meant to bail out the MBTA – while helping push the state’s gas prices to 8 cents above the national average – should be kept from the embattled transit authority until pension data is turned over, Bay State Republicans said.

“When you have glaring mismanagement with the T pension, it’s absurd to throw more money at a problem like this,” Massachusetts Republican Party spokesman Tim Buckley said. “They should have to turn over that information before they get another dime.”

The board of the MBTA Retirement Fund has refused to turn over pension data nearly a month after lawmakers passed an amendment ordering the payments be made public, and has even hired a lawyer to look at the law on its behalf, the Herald reported last week.

The amendment, attached to the budget, was pushed by House Speaker Robert A. DeLeo and Senate President Therese Murray.

About Rob "EaBo Clipper" Eno