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Maura Healey for governor

Maura Healey has spent her career standing up for the people of Massachusetts and pursuing justice and equality. She’s running for Governor to bring people together and expand economic opportunities for everyone in Massachusetts.

Maura has deep roots in Massachusetts. Her parents both grew up in Newburyport. Her maternal grandparents met in Gloucester, where her grandfather worked on the fishing docks and her grandmother, whose ancestors settled on the Parker River in Newbury in 1636, went to nursing school. Her paternal grandparents came from Ireland and worked as a domestic worker and a janitor.

Maura was born at the Bethesda Naval Hospital in 1971 while her father served as a captain in the U.S. Public Health Service, and later as a civil engineer in the Environmental Protection Agency. Her maternal grandmother was determined that her grandchild be born on Massachusetts soil. She traveled through a snowstorm down Route 1, flew to Maryland, snuck into the delivery room wearing her nursing outfit, and placed a bag of soil from a family woodlot in Byfield below the delivery bed so that Maura could be “born” over Massachusetts. What mothers and grandmothers will do!

Maura grew up the oldest of five siblings in an old farm house in Hampton Falls, New Hampshire. Her mother, Tracy, worked as a nurse at the local elementary school and was very active in town (and still is today!). Maura’s stepdad, Edward, joined the family when Maura was in high school. Ed was a teacher, local union president, and coached her high school basketball team, giving Maura a lifelong love of the game. Tracy instilled in Maura a commitment to community and hard work. Maura spent her childhood running through the woods, stealing apples (mostly drops) from the local orchard, playing sports, coaching, working as a camp counselor, and waitressing at the local Hampton Beach Casino.

Maura attended Harvard College, where she captained the basketball team, and then spent two years as a 5’4” starting point guard on a professional basketball team in Austria. She attended Northeastern University School of Law, motivated by a commitment to public service and desire to help people.

Maura went on to work in private practice before leaving to serve as Chief of the Civil Rights Division in the Attorney General’s Office. She was promoted to oversee two of the office’s most prominent divisions: the Public Protection & Advocacy Bureau and the Business & Labor Bureau. During this time, she led the first state challenge to the Defense of Marriage Act and held big banks and lending companies accountable after the 2008 financial crisis.

In 2014, Maura was elected the first openly gay Attorney General in the country. She was re-elected in 2018. As the People’s Lawyer, Maura has taken on some of the most powerful institutions on behalf of Massachusetts residents. She has protected student borrowers and homeowners from predatory lenders, sued Exxon Mobil for lying about climate change, and held Purdue Pharma and the Sackler family accountable for their role in fueling the opioid epidemic. She made the AG’s office the first statewide office to implement paid leave for families and established the office’s first-ever Community Engagement Division to go out directly into communities, share resources, and empower people through education about their rights.

Maura has delivered strong, steady leadership as AG, particularly through the tumultuous years of the Trump presidency and COVID-19 pandemic. Maura leads with a focus on teamwork, collaboration, open lines of communication, and bringing people together.

She launched her campaign for Governor to lift up Massachusetts families and invest in housing, public transportation, the clean energy economy, and job training. She believes that Massachusetts has the greatest collection of human capital, intellectual capital, business, innovation and know-how and that together these forces can be harnessed to do great things for residents, families, small businesses, and companies throughout the entire state.

You can still find Maura playing hoops at her local park or hanging out with her nieces and nephew. She lives in Boston.

Maura’s Priorities

Maura is running a campaign centered on the people of Massachusetts. Her vision is shaped by what she hears from voters on the campaign trail every day, as well as her experience as a civil rights lawyer and Attorney General. The pages that follow outline the approach she will take as Governor on some of the most pressing issues facing Massachusetts residents, providing a window into her record, her perspective, and her action plan. This platform will continue to be updated throughout the campaign.

Child Tax Credit

Maura believes the best way to help families dealing with high costs right now is by making meaningful investments while also putting money back in people’s pockets.

Too many families are struggling to keep up with the cost of living. With housing, gas, and child care costs skyrocketing, we need to give families relief. Maura believes the best way to help families dealing with high costs right now is by making meaningful investments while also putting money back in people’s pockets.

That’s why Maura supports tax relief for families. Under Maura’s Child Tax Credit, more than 700,000 families would receive $600 per child.

Her Child Tax Credit would have numerous benefits. As inflation and the cost of living continues to burden Massachusetts residents, this proposal would put more money back in their pockets. Large families would no longer be excluded from additional assistance. Further, the fully-refundable tax credit would help address the economic crisis stemming from our under-invested child care system, and families who don’t use professional child care would also see an added impact. This will be especially impactful for Black and Latino families, which are more likely to rely on informal child care. Overall, this proposal also would streamline and simplify the tax filing process for Massachusetts families.

Here’s how it works.

Currently, the Household Dependent Tax Credit is for all families with dependents, but it is capped at two dependents with a $180 benefit per dependent, for a maximum benefit of $360. The Dependent Care Tax Credit is for child care-related expenses, but it is also capped at two dependents with a $240 benefit per dependent, with a maximum benefit of $480. Under current law, a tax filer may choose either tax credit but cannot choose both. A family with two dependents who previously received the Dependent Care Tax Credit would get a maximum of $480 – under Healey’s plan, that family would receive $1200 in tax relief.

Maura’s Child Tax Credit would combine these two credits. She would more than double the value of the existing tax credits being offered and remove the dependent cap currently set at two dependents. Her plan would also index the credit to inflation moving forward. This would allow tax filers to simply include the number of dependents (children under age 13, individuals age 65 and over, and persons with disabilities) on their returns in order to receive the credits. This tax credit would also be permanent, giving families stability for years to come.

Climate

Maura has the experience, vision, and know-how to lead Massachusetts through the clean energy transition and to deliver on the promise of the opportunities presented. This is our chance to create good-paying jobs, protect our communities, and address environmental injustices that have existed for far too long.

The climate crisis is our greatest risk and our greatest opportunity. Our choice is clear: to protect our families, communities, and the environment that sustains us, we must rapidly transition to clean energy. As Governor, Maura will make climate change a top priority. She understands the critical urgency of this issue and she knows what is at stake—especially for the Commonwealth’s most vulnerable communities. The actions we must take now to protect our families and communities from climate change also present a once in a lifetime opportunity to build a healthier, more equitable future and to position Massachusetts as a global leader in clean energy technology and innovation. She will make that vision a reality by innovating state government, working directly with communities, implementing science-based policy, partnering with clean technology businesses, and supporting clean energy research and development.

Maura is a nationally recognized leader on climate and has led successful efforts to boost clean energy, protect ratepayers from costly and unnecessary investments in fossil fuel infrastructure, fight for health protective federal action on climate and push for market reforms that level the playing field for clean energy. She has the experience, vision, and know-how to lead Massachusetts through the clean energy transition and to deliver on the promise of the opportunities presented. This is our chance to build a better future for all—let’s seize it!

MAURA’S RECORD

Maura knows how to get this done. As Attorney General, she led groundbreaking efforts to combat the climate crisis. In 2019, Maura sued ExxonMobil in a first-of-its-kind lawsuit that alleged the company lied to consumers and investors about the risks of climate change. Maura understands that climate change harms our most vulnerable communities first and worst—she was among the first leaders nationally to draw attention to the unequal effects of COVID-19 on low income communities and communities of color due to environmental factors. She launched several initiatives to support environmental justice communities, including taking on polluters across the state, instituting a program to combat idling vehicles, and installing air monitors in Springfield, which has one of the highest rates of asthma in the country. Maura secured nearly $100 million in mitigation funds from Volkswagen for clean transportation and electric vehicle infrastructure. Her team also led the multi-state effort to block the Trump environmental rollbacks in court and called on the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities to investigate the future of natural gas utilities. Her settlement with Columbia Gas is sending millions of dollars back to low-income communities for climate resiliency and utility relief. As the ratepayer advocate, she worked to keep utility bills low, saving consumers $4.5 billion. Maura will make sure that equity is at the core of all state actions to reduce the threat of climate change and make our communities more resilient.

Last year, Massachusetts enacted An Act Creating a Next-Generation Roadmap for Massachusetts Climate Policy (the 2021 Climate Act). The 2021 Climate Act requires that, over the next eight years, we reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 50 percent below 1990 levels. Massachusetts’ greenhouse gas emission reduction mandates are on track with the most recent recommendations of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. The next Governor needs to be laser-focused on meeting this requirement, creating good-paying and sustainable jobs, and bringing direct economic benefits to the people most deeply impacted by the climate crisis. Maura has the strongest, proven record on climate change of any gubernatorial candidate in Massachusetts history. She is the right leader at the right time to guide Massachusetts to a clean energy future.

GOVERNMENT MUST ACT NOW ON CLIMATE

Climate change is not just an environmental issue—it is an issue of public health, economics, food security, national security, and housing. Our response to climate change must be as multifaceted as the problem itself. Now is the time to innovate in state government and work hand-in-hand with our local and regional partners.

The Healey Plan

Massachusetts must take swift, decisive, and comprehensive action to mitigate the risks posed by the climate crisis. In order to do this, government must be nimble and action must be coordinated across agencies. Maura will create a cabinet-level Climate Chief who will be responsible for driving climate policy across every Massachusetts agency and ensuring that climate change is considered in all relevant decision-making. The Climate Chief will report directly to the Governor, and coordinate efforts between the Executive Offices of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA), Labor and Workforce Development, Housing and Economic Development, the Department of Transportation, Health and Human Services, Public Safety and Security, MBTA, MassDevelopment, and more. Maura will also establish a network of state, regional, and local partnerships to ensure every community in all parts of the Commonwealth has a say in the energy decisions that affect them and receives necessary support to build climate resilience in ways that address community priorities.

The state will lead by example by achieving net-zero emissions by 2030 across state operations and rapidly transitioning the state fleet to electric vehicles. State agencies on the frontlines fighting climate change must have the funds to win the war. As Governor, Maura will commit at least 1 percent of the state budget to the states’ environmental and energy agencies and work with the Legislature to increase funding for the Department of Public Utilities (DPU) to support its growing mission and responsibilities.

Under Maura’s leadership, environmental and energy permitting agencies will build in equity from the ground up and ensure that new and upgraded infrastructure supports, rather than undermines, our climate mitigation, adaptation, and resilience goals. All agencies and programs will use the best science and forward-looking climate data in their planning and decision-making.

INNOVATE AND CREATE JOBS

Massachusetts knows how to solve problems and build new industries. Becoming the nation’s hub for clean energy innovation will bring industry to the state and create thousands of good-paying, sustainable jobs.

The Healey Plan

Maura will establish a Climate Action and Innovation Leadership Council charged with making Massachusetts the best place in the country to start, staff, and grow a firm that solves environmental and climate challenges. This council will bring together the private and public sectors, and our universities and non-profits to continue Massachusetts’ national leadership on incubating and scaling next-generation technology. This includes advanced storage, networked and deep geothermal, hydrogen, distributed energy, floating offshore wind, non-carbon industrial and building processes, smart modular reactors, and fusion.

As a part of their workforce development agenda, the Healey Administration will work to rapidly deploy workforce development funding to training programs. They will partner with community colleges, vocational schools, workforce investment boards, and labor in order to meet the worker demand of the clean energy economy and transition existing energy workers to high-quality clean energy jobs. They will build a skilled, trained, and large workforce to install electric heat pumps in millions of homes and buildings across the state. Workforce development programs will include wraparound services and stipends to incentivize more women, people of color, and people with low incomes to participate. Training and recruitment programs will be held within overburdened communities.

Maura will reinvigorate the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center (CEC) to spur clean tech job growth. With its strong relationships in the private sector and with our world-class academic institutions, the CEC has helped boost the clean energy sector in Massachusetts, which has grown 68 percent since 2010, with over 100,000 people employed as of 2021. Under Maura’s leadership, the CEC will realize its full potential as the state’s clean tech accelerator, driving innovation in everything from high performance buildings to clean transportation to offshore wind, and creating the finance and business models we need to grow the clean energy economy right here in Massachusetts. The CEC will also nurture the skilled workforce needed to meet this growth, creating 40,000 jobs – double the number lost to the pandemic. Maura will work to triple the CEC’s budget and charge it with establishing a Massachusetts Green Bank to facilitate investment in low-carbon, climate-resilient infrastructure and empower it to utilize other economic tools to attract and retain companies that will create new clean energy jobs, particularly in low-income communities. Using the power of public funds to leverage private investment, the Massachusetts Green Bank will finance green projects where they are most needed to deliver community benefits, jobs, reduced emissions, and climate resilience. The Green Bank will also provide seed money to clean energy companies founded in overburdened communities and by people of color.

In a Healey Administration, communities will be empowered to innovate and lead on climate change. Our municipalities have the will to act, but current state law stymies these efforts. Maura will support legislation that provides communities with the legal authority to innovate and demonstrate successful clean energy initiatives. She also will strengthen and expand municipal aggregations and climate partnerships addressing community priorities that create climate co-benefits and the sharing of ideas between communities.

CENTER OVERBURDENED COMMUNITIES

Over the next two decades, we will be investing billions of dollars in clean energy, clean transportation, energy efficiency, and climate adaptation. We have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to invest in our environmental justice communities, which bear the brunt of increasing temperatures, dangerous pollution, extreme weather, and rising sea levels, and ensure that all communities in Massachusetts are stronger, more resilient, and benefit from these clean energy investments. This is an opportunity for transformational change.

The Healey Plan

A Healey Administration will ensure that American Rescue Plan and Infrastructure Law climate spending directly benefits our overburdened communities and advances our climate goals. They will address and reverse historical disinvestment and disempowerment, and empower community members as decision makers. Communities will drive this effort from the ground up, so that the people most deeply impacted by the climate crisis are involved at every stage. The Healey Administration will support projects like clean energy improvements in public and subsidized housing, schools, or municipal buildings, converting fleets of dirty fuel vehicles to clean electric buses, and community solar. State, regional, and local agencies in urban, suburban, and rural communities alike will work together to apply for and receive every dollar available for Massachusetts and will do so with efficiency and inclusivity. Maura will work to get rid of the unnecessary fossil fuel infrastructure that plagues so many overburdened communities and will work with these communities to repurpose the land in a way that makes sense for them.

Maura also will ensure that overburdened communities have a seat at the table. Agencies like the DPU, the Massachusetts Environmental Policy Act Office (MEPA), Energy Facilities Siting Board (EFSB), and the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) are making decisions that directly affect the health and economic success of our overburdened communities. Agency decision-making must be equity-focused and responsive to community concerns. Maura will appoint representatives from environmental justice communities to the EFSB, create a new DPU Office of Public Participation, and establish intervenor funds to level the playing field and support all interested parties having a voice in agency proceedings. Maura will require that these agencies have diversity, equity, and inclusion programs. Top-level officials will all be trained in environmental and energy justice decision-making. And Maura will finally convene the Environmental Justice Advisory Council, which will advise her and her team on the needs of overburdened communities and ensure that the process for distributing climate investments is inclusive of community voices.

Maura will dramatically expand community-based environmental monitoring in overburdened communities across the state, including air monitoring data, using new and transparent technology, and acting on the opportunities the data present to address local air and water pollution. In a Healey Administration, DEP will be empowered to aggressively implement the 2021 Climate Act’s directives and to address cumulative impacts of air pollution and other environmental degradation.

ELECTRIFY EVERYTHING

Today, fossil fuels used by our gas furnaces, oil-fired furnaces and boilers, water heaters, and gas stoves in residential and commercial buildings are responsible for 27 percent of the state’s greenhouse gas emissions. Transportation is responsible for 42 percent of greenhouse gas emissions and industrial uses emit 5 percent. In the next two decades, we need to electrify everything—including our buildings and transportation system. We can do this. Our state is home to industrious and innovative workers who can lead this swift transition. Doing so will create jobs, improve public health, and strengthen our economy.

THE HEALEY PLAN

Clean Buildings

Electrifying buildings will be one of our biggest challenges– but also an opportunity for safer, healthier homes and buildings. We have the technology that we need, but we need a bold set of policies to obtain the level of greenhouse gas emissions reduction necessary and to do so equitably.

We also need to change the business model of our gas utilities, which are, after all, public utilities. The Healey Administration will require the gas utilities to adopt transition plans that are customer-focused, equitable, and consistent with the state’s emission reduction requirements. Maintaining the status quo by kicking the can down the road will not be acceptable. Maura will also work with the Legislature and stakeholders to ensure that the state’s law on gas pipe repair and replacement reduces leaks and is consistent with the state’s climate requirements.

Energy efficiency is the most cost-effective way to address emissions and lower customer costs. We must continue and expand our award-winning MassSave energy efficiency program. But we cannot get the job done by relying solely on the MassSave program or by continuing to build homes and buildings that rely on fossil fuels. That is why, in a Healey Administration, municipalities will have the option to adopt a specialized energy code that gives them the authority to ban gas use in new construction.

A Healey Administration will also install one million heat pumps by 2030 by focusing on market transformation: workforce training, customer and installer education, and lower installation costs. Maura will prioritize whole home retrofits for low-income households to help them weatherize, install heat pumps and other efficient electric appliances, and make other health and safety home improvements. And, she will work with the Legislature to establish building emission standards like the new ordinance in effect in Boston (BERDO) and establish a home energy rating system.

Clean Transportation

Affordable, reliable transportation is a crucial backbone of the economy. Massachusetts is among the lowest ranked states when it comes to commute times, and the Greater Boston area has some of the worst traffic congestion in the country. Impoverished riders all face longer commute times, often because their communities are poorly served by public transit, or the cost of housing near transit is prohibitive. Maura understands that access to transportation is access to opportunity. And she knows that transportation is also the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in Massachusetts, and a source of other dangerous air pollution. Fixing the state’s transportation system is a win-win-win for equity, the Commonwealth’s economy, and the environment.

We need to quickly electrify all modes of transportation. At the same time, we need to reduce car usage by improving the reliability and frequency of transit services, expanding transit to economically growing zones, and adjusting land use patterns so more homes and jobs are near transit. Maura’s vision for a clean transportation system will increase transportation choice, reduce emissions, and improve public health. As a part of her transportation agenda, a Healey Administration will electrify public transportation so that all modes operate on 100 percent clean power by 2040, starting with school and MBTA buses by 2030.

Maura will ensure that the nearly $3 billion in new federal transit funding for Massachusetts state and regional transit authorities will pay dividends in better, expanded, and affordable MBTA and RTA service and she will leverage state dollars to target additional federal funds. But she knows that these additional funds are not sufficient to maintain and expand the Commonwealth’s public transportation system to meet our goals. The Commonwealth needs long term, sustained state funding sources to support the RTAs and tackle the projected shortfalls in the MBTA capital and operating funds. Maura will evaluate options, including revenue-generating incentives to decarbonize transportation, as part of her commitment to solving this longstanding problem.

Maura will also put 1 million electric vehicles on the road by 2030 by providing larger rebates for used and low-cost electric vehicles, while making it easy for customers to access these rebates at the time they buy or lease their vehicle. She will prioritize public spending on electric vehicle charging infrastructure projects that benefit low- and moderate-income households and overburdened communities.

The Healey Administration will end the sale of new passenger cars and light duty trucks powered by gasoline or diesel by 2035. All public fleet purchases will be electric by 2028. They will require utilities to offer discounts for charging at night when electricity demand is low. The Healey transportation agenda will also include bold investment in electric vehicle infrastructure and strong incentives for their adoption, including for heavy duty vehicles, as well as pedestrian walkways, and safe, expanded bike lanes.

The last two years have demonstrated that telework is a viable alternative to the daily commute for many jobs and industries. The Healey Administration will work with employers to reduce car usage through smart telework policies and expand on measures to reduce single occupancy vehicles. These policies are not only good for the environment, but they also reduce commuting times.

Recognizing that different communities and regions have different clean transportation needs, Maura will put communities in the driver’s seat by establishing a community-based transportation equity program to support planning for projects that local communities most need.

BUILD A MODERN, CONSUMER-ORIENTED CLEAN ENERGY GRID

To meet the goal of electrifying everything, Massachusetts needs to exponentially expand clean energy to power all electricity. This means deploying wind, solar, hydro, storage, and other emerging clean technologies—and to do so faster than ever before. We need to expand our electric transmission system to move power to where people are, modernize our distribution grid, and invest in energy efficiency and long-duration energy storage. Accelerating the pace of renewable development will create jobs, strengthen our economy, and enhance reliability while addressing climate change and local air pollution.

The Healey Plan

Under a Healey Administration, Massachusetts will achieve 100 percent clean electricity supply by 2030.

Maura will position Massachusetts as the nation’s offshore wind capital by expeditiously permitting the 5,600 MW of offshore wind procurements currently authorized by law and more than doubling the Commonwealth’s target to 10,000 MW offshore wind by 2035. She will do that by increasing our offshore wind procurements and exploring market mechanisms to procure wind-powered energy at the lowest cost as well as facilitating corporate, municipal, and non-profit agreements to buy directly from the power producer. Through project labor agreements, she will ensure that union workers build this industry and do so with prevailing wages. Maura will also increase investments in port infrastructure to $200 million to ensure that Massachusetts retains its leadership role in offshore wind development.

The Healey Administration will capitalize on the strong existing Massachusetts solar industry with a total of 10 GW of deployed solar by 2030. They will deploy rooftop solar installations in the communities where widespread adoption is lacking and encourage smart siting of large solar facilities. Maura will also press utilities to plan for and upgrade the distribution system to integrate this new solar equitably, without the delays customers face today due to utility backlogs. Investing in a smarter grid will help ensure that it will continue to perform as we increase our dependence on electricity for heating and transportation.

Maura will quadruple energy storage deployment by 2030 and invest in research and development to make long-duration storage a reality. She also will build upon Massachusetts’ award-winning energy efficiency programs by ending fossil fuel incentives, encouraging fuel switching and beneficial electrification, and focusing on whole building electrification in low-income and overburdened communities. And a Healey Administration will give customers greater control over their energy use through home solar and storage systems, community energy systems, advanced meters, time varying rates, and smart appliances.

Regional transmission lines, both within New England and connecting with other regions, will allow Massachusetts to import and export power. These lines are crucial for a reliable and clean electric system. There are large reserves of reliable hydropower from existing dams in Canada which would complement solar and offshore wind energy, but thus far, Massachusetts has not succeeded in finding a way to bring these supplies to the Commonwealth. Maura will be a leader among our neighboring states that, like Massachusetts, are seeking to decarbonize their economies and leverage our region’s shared vision for our energy transition. Maura will work closely with regional partners to ensure that ISO-New England markets for buying and selling power do not discriminate against clean power. Federal markets, transmission planning, and siting all must align with our path to a modern, renewable energy grid focused on consumers. In the first six months of a Healey Administration, Maura will convene a regional energy summit to develop a strategy for addressing transmission, siting, market reform, and cost allocation issues. A Healey Administration will also reduce technical process delays that keep clean energy from connecting to the grid, increase the states’ roles in transmission planning, and ensure that our distribution and transmission systems are up to date and can work with each other.

Maura will establish a new DPU division on grid modernization to remove delays and barriers to renewable resources connecting to the distribution grid and ensure that utilities plan for and build a modern grid that will support distributed resources and building and heating electrification. She will support programs that decrease electricity use during times of high demand and incentivize electricity use when demand is low. Maura will direct the EFSB, together with an advisory group, to review and make recommendations to the Governor and the Legislature on how the Commonwealth can best facilitate the siting of clean energy in appropriate places. The recommendations will prioritize energy and environmental justice and develop options for more efficient and less costly permitting processes.

KEEP CARBON IN THE GROUND AND PROTECT OUR FARMS & FORESTS

To meet our climate goals, we have to both reduce emissions from all sectors and remove existing carbon dioxide pollution from our atmosphere. Protecting our forests, agricultural soils, and wetlands reduces emissions, and removes carbon pollution from our atmosphere. Massachusetts’ forests are of an age and condition to draw down significant quantities of carbon from the atmosphere in the next decade, by 2050 and by 2100. These natural climate solutions offer other benefits, including making our ecosystems more resilient, providing natural cooling and shade, flood control, protecting species, promoting biodiversity, recreation, and supporting local agriculture and access to healthy food. Establishing Strategic Forest Reserves to provide these services and preserve our matured forests to draw down carbon is essential to meeting our climate goals. Providing incentives for sustainable forest and farm management practices will allow us to preserve our agricultural heritage and continue to produce forest products over the long term.

The Healey Plan

There are currently about 3 million acres of forested lands in Massachusetts, and most are unprotected or lack sufficient protections. The Healey Administration will establish a Forest Protection Program that will provide enhanced incentives to willing private landowners to keep their trees growing rather than harvesting them. The program will reward private landowners who manage their forests for reducing emissions over each harvest cycle, including by increasing intervals between harvests, conserving the oldest mature trees, protecting soil carbon during harvest, and other improved harvesting and management practices.

Rapid growth in solar power is crucial to ensuring Massachusetts meets its emission reduction mandates, yet it must be sited appropriately. The Healey Administration will carefully tailor solar incentive programs to ensure a balanced approach that achieves our solar potential while protecting our mature forests. They will do this by prioritizing deployment of rooftop solar and solar installations in parking lot canopies, brownfields, landfills, unused industrial or commercial sites, powerline and other rights of way, and suitable agricultural and horticultural lands.

The Commonwealth’s wetlands also store large volumes of soil carbon. While we can be proud of our strong wetlands protections—among the most effective in the world—our wetlands are still being lost, in part because our no-net-loss policy permits wetlands to be replaced with man-made alternatives. Maura will strengthen wetlands protections to ensure they remain carbon sinks, not sources.

Burning wood for bioenergy depletes our forests, increases greenhouse gas emissions, and is a threat to human health. Maura will end subsidies for forest bioenergy for electricity and commercial-scale heat.

Maura will place a temporary moratorium on commercial harvesting on state-owned public forest land. Within her first year as Governor, she will develop and implement a science-based state forest management plan that accounts for the impacts of climate change on our forest resources and the role our forests can play in protecting the climate.

Massachusetts has a vibrant farming community, including young farmers, and farmers markets and Community Supported Agriculture opportunities are popular across the state. Through the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources, Maura will establish a Climate-Friendly Farming program to provide technical assistance to farmers interested in farm management practices that can reduce emissions and help drawdown carbon. And, the Healey Administration will measure and track outcomes to verify reductions and gain more knowledge about the techniques that work best for our soil types and crops. Through this voluntary program, they will also provide information and assistance to farmers seeking to reduce costs and climate-warming nitrous oxide emissions through smarter use of fertilizers—a measure that also protects our streams, wetlands, and waterbodies from polluted runoff.

MASSACHUSETTS STRONG BUILDING RESILIENCY

Climate change is already causing more extremes in temperature, precipitation, runoff and flooding, extended droughts, high winds, and storms. Faster-than-historical increases in temperature and sea-level rise cause disruptive and irreversible shifts in seasons and shorelines. The expected extremes and gradual changes will combine in unexpected ways to cause ecological, agricultural, infrastructure, human, and economic impacts sooner and larger than expected. Making the needed investments now will strengthen our communities and protect our vital resources, while addressing community priorities.

The Healey Plan

The urgent need for adaptation measures is one that spans our state, and adaptation needs vary from community to community. Rural Western Massachusetts has different needs from our coastal areas, which are in turn different from the needs in the urban centers of the Boston metro region, Worcester, and Springfield. 93 percent of Massachusetts cities and towns (328 municipalities) have enrolled in the Massachusetts Vulnerability Preparedness (MVP) program. Maura will increase the budget for this successful program, allowing more communities to focus on implementation and action. She will also work to build capacity in and provide technical assistance to lower-capacity rural and urban communities so that they can take advantage of funding opportunities to improve planning for climate resilience.

Maura will prioritize efforts to ensure storm and flood preparedness (coastal and inland), with a focus on reviewing and improving existing flood protection and insurance, awareness campaigns, and training for emergency management personnel. She will establish a blue-ribbon commission charged with developing a statewide framework devoted to addressing the impacts of sea level rise, erosion, and extreme storms on our treasured and vulnerable coast. This commission will leverage our scientific community’s increasingly sophisticated data about the risks we presently face and consider best practices to encourage retreat in areas where sea level rise or riverine flooding is too extreme to be addressed by reasonable modifications.

One of the most immediate impacts of climate change in Massachusetts will be heat. Heat waves disproportionately impact people of color, the elderly, people with disabilities, and people living in public and subsidized housing. Maura will implement an Extreme Heat Action Plan to build community resilience. The plan will include large-scale tree planting, identifying heat islands, training for local health officials, cooling schools, and a public health monitoring system to identify heat illness events early, and monitor trends.

Climate resilience includes creating awareness of the potential health, including mental health, impacts of climate change. Maura will partner with Massachusetts’ leading health care providers to promote awareness of climate change related health issues.

Criminal Justice Reform

We have a lot more work to do to address systemic racism in our criminal justice system – and across all realms of our society. Maura will continue to advocate for criminal justice reforms.

Maura’s background is as a civil rights lawyer, and her work has been and continues to be guided by a commitment to equity. It’s why she’s brought cases against predatory landlords and lenders. It’s why she’s worked to address the broken student loan system and reduce the debt burden on families of color and immigrants. It’s why her office has invested in recovery services in Black and Latino/Hispanic communities. It’s why she revealed civil rights violations in the Bristol County Sheriff’s Office, leading to the termination of its contract with the federal government. It’s why she’s taken on pollution and environmental injustices.

And it’s why she’s supported criminal justice reforms – the 2020 police reform bill in Massachusetts, repealing mandatory minimums, bail reform, adopting uniform policies on eyewitness identification, increasing the property crime thresholds amounts and thereby downgrading many of these offenses from felonies to misdemeanors, releasing terminally ill incarcerated individuals, ending mandatory drivers license revocations for non-driving offenses, creating and supporting Conviction Integrity Units in all her prosecutorial offices to address wrongful convictions, and more.

Voters can count on Maura to use this same equity lens as Governor. She knows that we have a lot more work to do to address systemic racism in our criminal justice system – and across all realms of our society. That includes:

  • Police reform: Maura will be committed to seeing through full implementation of the landmark 2020 police reform bill. The new Peace Officer Standards & Training Commission has a lot of work to do to ensure that our departments and officers have uniform training standards, certification and decertification policies, de-escalation tactics and other life saving procedures, and so much more. Massachusetts was one of the last states to adopt this type of independent oversight Commission, but Maura knows they are up to the task.
  • Appointments: Maura will appoint leaders who share a commitment to public safety, equity and criminal justice reform.
  • Prevention: Maura will continue to support investments that prevent entry into the criminal justice system in the first place, including, expanding affordable housing, increasing access to behavioral health care and recovery services, and hiring more social workers in schools. For those re-entering our communities, she will look to advance opportunities that increase access to jobs and education. Real alternatives, when partnered with housing, health care and other support services, can help reduce recidivism.
  • Workforce development: Maura sees workforce development opportunities as a means to support people who are re-entering society, especially if we invest in wraparound services and provide stipends for people to live off while they train. Maura will continue to advocate for removing barriers to employment because of someone’s criminal record.
  • Other reforms: Maura will also continue to advocate for passage of several reforms currently before the legislature. She supports legislation to ensure that incarcerated individuals are not charged for phone calls to their loved ones. She believes we must remove barriers to re-entry, like losing a driver’s license or being barred from good-paying jobs or affordable housing. Maura will also support investing in multidisciplinary crisis response teams to respond to certain emergency calls, including those involving behavioral health and homelessness. And she’ll continue to advocate for reforms to protect the confidentiality of crime victims.

Economic Development

Maura will promote economic development that creates opportunity, serving and balancing the needs of all stakeholders – our communities, workers, employers, and investors.

With a visionary public-private partnership, we are poised to create the next Massachusetts Miracle, expanding our place as a world leader, engaging our resources in investment and capital, high-tech innovation, and academic creativity to build a dynamic economy that embraces climate resiliency and sustainable growth. Maura will make certain that these partnerships, first and foremost, serve the current and future needs of our residents and our environment.

Maura knows that a healthy economy for all our citizens must be built from the bottom up, the middle out, and the top down. She will continue to lift up workers by advocating for universal child care, fair wages, and strong benefits. She will build out our middle class by investing in education, workforce training, housing affordability, and public transportation. Maura will also take a close look at our tax policy to make sure it addresses today’s extreme concentration of wealth and income such that our sources of revenue and our expenditures lead to a fairer and more balanced economy.

Maura’s economic development agenda will include the following:

  • Approach all efforts through an equity lens, ensuring that everyone in Massachusetts has the opportunities to access high-quality jobs and careers by supporting wraparound services like child care and living stipends.
  • Undertake historic investment and recommitment to connecting workers everywhere in the Commonwealth to good jobs, including to critical industries like health care, education, clean energy, advanced manufacturing, and behavioral health.
  • Lead the nation in training and preparing workers to participate in the clean energy economy by establishing a Climate Action and Innovation Leadership Council charged with making Massachusetts the best place in the country to start, staff, and grow a firm that solves environmental and climate challenges, as well as tripling the budget for the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center (CEC) to spur clean tech job growth.
  • Promote and expand Early College efforts across the Commonwealth, providing more young people with pathways to opportunity and post-secondary success.
  • Encourage entrepreneurism, especially for women and people of color by creating an Office of Economic Assistance to advise and assist in developing business plans, facilitate regulatory compliance, and help people access needed capital and borrowing.
  • Partner with labor and industry to create pathways to meaningful opportunities and steady careers in important sectors.
  • Ensure that Massachusetts remains competitive by creating a regulatory environment that encourages and supports opportunities for start-ups, as well as growth of existing businesses, that are consistent with our community’s vision.
  • Bring new resources and attention to Massachusetts’ robust network of vocational and technical high schools, coordinating those assets with regional community colleges and industries to maximize their impact and fulfill their potential.
  • Enact stronger protections against wage theft so that workers are better protected.
  • Expand opportunities for employment, housing, and more for individuals leaving places of incarceration.

Education

Maura comes from a family of educators. Her mom, Tracy, is a middle school nurse and her stepdad, Edward, was Maura’s basketball coach and the president of their local teacher’s union. As a middle school basketball coach herself, Maura believes strongly in the importance of a well-rounded, quality education for every child in Massachusetts.

Massachusetts is home to globally-recognized public schools and educators. But this achievement masks the persistent reality that Massachusetts is also home to wide opportunity gaps that plague our students of color, English language learners, students with disabilities, and low-income students. The past two years have been especially hard on our students, educators, and parents. Our entire education system has been upended by COVID-19. Every child has had their education and development disrupted at some level and the disparities that existed before the pandemic have only widened. As we emerge from the pandemic, we need to rebuild our education system so it works better for everyone and to ensure that all children have equal access to a quality education.

As Governor, Maura would be laser-focused on closing these opportunity gaps, from early childhood, to K-12, to higher education.

EARLY CHILDHOOD

Our early childhood education and care system – which is essential to the basic functioning of our economy – is in desperate need of investment. We saw what happened during this pandemic to our child care system – children suffered, parents couldn’t go to work, and businesses and the economy struggled. Now, two years later, we still have 10 percent fewer child care slots than we had before the pandemic and families are struggling to afford the cost. Massachusetts ranks second in the country for infant care costs, higher than what most would pay to attend a public university. It’s not surprising that the percentage of women in the workforce has dropped significantly. And our early education and care workforce – 40 percent of whom are women of color – is depleted by burnout and low wages.

Maura has been a strong advocate for greater investment in early education and care. She called on Congress to invest billions in the industry, pass federal child care legislation, and make the child tax credit permanent.

As Governor, she will continue to advocate for federal funding for early education and care, as well as explore state solutions to the child care crisis. Maura supports the Common Start proposal, which would make child care free for the lowest-income families, limit child care costs for most families to no more than 7 percent of their income, and significantly increase pay for early educators to address the workforce crisis in the early education field.

Maura will also support early education and care providers. As Governor, she will partner with educational institutions to create an early education and care workforce pipeline – including expanded access to career development opportunities – and implement strategies focused on workforce retention. Maura also supports efforts in the Legislature to increase salaries of early education providers and the effective implementation of the Early Education and Care Public Private Trust Fund.

K-12 EDUCATION

Maura is a longtime advocate for equitable funding for our public schools and improved behavioral health services for our students. She supported the Student Opportunity Act, which provides more equitable funding for our school districts. She opposed the 2016 ballot measure that would have drained millions from our public schools by expanding the number of charter schools in the state. And she’s funded groundbreaking programming across the state to prevent substance use disorder, combat sexual assault, stop gun violence and bullying, and help young people build healthy relationships in school. Her partnership with Sandy Hook Promise has helped deploy their violence prevention program in 50 school districts throughout the state.

As Governor, Maura would continue her focus on closing achievement gaps and better supporting students and their families, including:

  • Fully fund the Student Opportunity Act. Our Gateway Cities and rural communities have historically been underfunded. These districts serve large populations of Black and brown students, and they deserve equitable funding.

  • Invest in behavioral health and wraparound services. With the disruptions and isolation of the pandemic, a rise in hate nationwide, and the stresses of the digital world, we are in the midst of a youth behavioral health crisis. There are long wait times for pediatric psychiatric beds and alarming instances of bullying across the state. As Governor, Maura would seek to invest in more school counselors and social workers to better address the behavioral health needs of students and their families. She also would prioritize more programming to identify other needs of families – such as housing, health care, or food insecurity – and work with school districts to connect them with the services they need.

  • Update our school buildings. Many of our school facilities are in disrepair, outdated, lack modern science labs and equipment, suffer from poor ventilation, and are not environmentally sustainable. The buildings most in need of renovation or replacement are disproportionately in lower-income communities that serve larger populations of Black and brown students and educators, who deserve to learn in modern and healthy environments. Maura would lead efforts to reevaluate the Massachusetts School Building Authority’s reimbursement formula to support districts in need.

  • Recruit, retain, and promote educators of color. Our students of color deserve to walk into a classroom and learn from someone who shares their lived experiences. But in Massachusetts, where more than 40 percent of our student population are students of color, less than 10 percent of our educators are people of color. Twenty-five percent of Black students in Massachusetts attend a school without a single Black teacher. Research shows that having a single teacher of color can boost academic achievement, high school graduation rates, and college enrollment for students of color. As Governor, Maura will promote policies and legislation that will create a pipeline to better recruit, retain, and promote educators of color. This includes legislation that would explore alternatives to the teacher licensing exam (the MTEL), improve financial support for prospective teachers, invest in professional development, hire more support staff, and promote Diversity, Equity & Inclusion programs in local districts to better retain and elevate teachers of color to administrative positions.

  • Assess the role of standardized testing. Maura supports the efforts of the Massachusetts Consortium for Innovative Education Assessment and will work with stakeholders to determine what reforms to our assessment and accountability system would best support the goals of advancing excellence and equity, especially for students with disabilities, English learners, and those from marginalized communities.

  • Expand early college programs. The Massachusetts Early College Initiative helps students from low-income families and communities of color earn free college credits and receive support while still in high school. Maura will expand early college programming to help make higher education more attainable and equitable.

HIGHER EDUCATION

Massachusetts’ colleges and universities are some of our greatest resources. They drive economic growth and higher wages, and foster an environment of curiosity and innovation for which our state is renowned. But underneath these achievements are persistent disparities. In 2001, our public university graduates had one of the lowest student debt in the nation. By 2016, debt levels climbed to 10th. One important driver of this change is cuts to state spending on higher education – Massachusetts spends 31 percent less on higher education per student than it did 20 years ago, and instead places that burden on our students in the form of increased tuition and fees. Higher education can be an important pathway to economic mobility, and our public university graduates are much more likely to stay in Massachusetts after graduation, starting their families, contributing to our economy, and forming the fabric of our communities. The jobs are here – a 2016 report predicted that many good-paying jobs in our thriving tech and health care industries would go unfilled. Today, that’s truer than ever.

Maura knows all too well how student debt holds back our residents. She is the first and only Attorney General in the country to create a Student Loan Assistance Unit, and she’s helped thousands of borrowers navigate our broken student debt system. She sued the Department of Education and brokered huge settlements with Navient and FedLoan that will help borrowers pay down their debt and receive loan forgiveness. She led the call with Senator Elizabeth Warren and Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley for President Bident to cancel up $50,000 in federal debt per borrower. For Maura, tackling our student debt crisis is a matter of basic economics and racial justice. Too many borrowers can’t buy a home, start a family, or get ahead because of their debt. And Black and brown borrowers bear a disproportionate debt burden. As Governor, Maura would continue her focus on improving access to affordable public higher education and reducing student debt, including:

  • Continue to urge President Biden to cancel up to $50,000 in federal student debt per borrower;
  • Invest in our community colleges, which are an important driver of economic mobility;
  • Increase investment into our public colleges and universities, update school facilities, and better support students, adjunct faculty, and other staff at these critical institutions.
  • Work to improve access and affordability of higher education so more students can graduate debt-free.

Health Care and Behavioral Health Care

Maura is focused on addressing the affordability crisis and promoting health equity, while maintaining the highest quality of care.

Massachusetts is lucky to have the best hospitals and health care institutions in the world. The strength of our health care system has never been more apparent than during the last two years of the pandemic. In particular, we have seen the best of our health care workforce, as they have gone above and beyond to serve our communities. But Maura knows that, despite the world class care here in Massachusetts, families are still struggling to afford it, as we have some of the highest costs in the country. Racial and ethnic disparities that have existed for generations continue to prevent equitable access to care and have been exacerbated by the pandemic.

Maura is focused on addressing the affordability crisis and promoting health equity, while maintaining the highest quality of care. Last year, her office released a robust report on racial inequity in health with recommendations in key areas to move toward racial justice in health care. As Governor, Maura will build on that vision to ensure we have a system that serves every community. This includes:

  • Treating mental and behavioral health care as seriously as all other forms of health care. Maura will invest in workforce development and support, create enforceable standards for parity in coverage, and build on successful models for providing behavioral health access in the community.
  • Lowering the cost of prescription drugs by increasing transparency in the pharmaceutical industry and exploring ways to ensure that prices correlate with the value new drugs add to available treatment regimens.
  • Focusing on ways to lower overall health care costs for families, including rising premiums and out-of-pocket costs, and ways to address unwarranted increases in provider prices.
  • Requiring health care providers and insurance carriers to improve the collection and reporting of patient race, ethnicity, and other demographic characteristics.
  • Including health equity as part of the state’s Annual Health Care Cost Trends Hearing to measure the state’s progress towards identified equity benchmarks.
  • Expanding access to telehealth services by increasing the availability of free and low-cost broadband, internet plans and devices, and making sure that underserved patients are aware of available resources.
  • Expanding affordable and inclusive educational opportunities to increase access to health professions
  • Ensuring that anti-racist, cultural humility, and implicit bias training is required of all licensed providers.
  • Expanding and supporting our local and regional public health agencies and integrating their expertise into our health care system.
  • Promoting the use of community health workers to meet the needs of underserved communities.
  • Fostering greater integration of our health care system with other public and private resources and experts to address key social determinants of health that are outlined in other sections of this page – including education, employment, housing, and the environment.
  • Working together with our health care, health sciences and information technology research leaders to maintain and grow our robust biotechnology sector, creating opportunities for young people to develop careers and contribute to scientific advancement.

Housing

Maura’s background in housing has been focused on making it easier for people to afford to stay in their homes.

Maura’s background in housing has been focused on making it easier for people to afford to stay in their homes. When she was chief of the Attorney General’s Civil Rights Division, she led the office’s efforts to hold banks accountable after the mortgage crisis. She’s worked for years to stop illegal evictions, help tenants navigate the eviction process, and hold landlords accountable. She’s sued realtors for discrimination, and brokered a settlement with the Boston Housing Authority over health concerns in its facilities. In Lynn, she’s been working to help a family after their landlord forced them to live in filth, harassed them, and then called ICE on them. As Massachusetts approached an eviction crisis due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Maura instructed her team to step up their efforts to help tenants navigate the state’s process to access rental assistance. The office purchased tables for community centers to provide people with a local place where they could fill out the application and launched an internal task force to handle evictions in multiple languages.

One of the top issues Maura hears from residents and business owners across the state is housing affordability as they struggle to keep up with rising rents and mortgages. As Governor, Maura proposes:

  • Expanding and preserving housing supply through increasing state resources, addressing local zoning barriers, and protecting 40B.
  • Increasing first-time homeownership and helping close the racial wealth gap through expansion of down payment assistance and housing counseling.
  • Combating homelessness through expansion of permanent, supportive housing.
  • Increasing economic mobility of low income residents in public and assisted housing through workforce development and other services.
  • Incentivizing the creation of units around MBTA stations.
  • Making our rental assistance process more transparent and accessible to people without computers or who don’t speak English.
  • Empowering communities to enact local rent stabilization policies.

Additionally, Maura believes expanding rail service will help ease the housing crunch in Boston and bring economic development to other areas of the state. Maura also knows that climate plays a significant role in our housing crisis. We can’t let our communities become vulnerable to extreme weather, nor trapped in a situation where they can’t afford mounting utility bills, like what we’re seeing right now. State funds need to go toward weatherizing and preparing existing housing for solar, targeted at low-income communities.

Immigration

Maura has been a leading advocate for immigrant rights. As Governor, she will ensure that all Massachusetts families can thrive.

One of the first steps Maura took as AG was to create an Advisory Council on New Americans to help address the needs of the state’s immigrant and refugee communities. She also instituted a language access plan and a first-of-its-kind Division of Community Engagement to lead trainings on immigrant rights, tenant rights, and more in different languages in communities across the state.

Her team has stood up for the rights of the DREAMers, temporary protected status holders, and asylum seekers, successfully challenged President Trump’s xenophobic policies that targeted immigrants and refugees, and advocated for a fair and accurate Census that counted every person, regardless of legal status. She also launched an investigation that found that the Bristol County Sheriff’s Office violated the civil rights of federal immigration detainees. After her office published a report about these violations, the Department of Homeland Security terminated its contracts with the Sheriff. Maura also put out multiple advisories on immigrant rights in the context of scams, higher education, COVID-19, and food pantries. Just recently, she secured a settlement with an immigration attorney running an asylum scam in the Brazilian community.

As Governor, Maura will continue to defend our immigrant communities and work to find meaningful ways to make sure everyone in our state feels safe, welcome and has the tools needed to thrive. That includes:

  • Ensuring that eligible undocumented residents can receive a driver’s license, regardless of immigration status.
  • Ending state and local law enforcement’s involvement in federal immigration matters.
  • Expanding the state’s capacity to meet the language access needs of our communities.
  • Providing health care coverage for children regardless of their or their parents’ immigration status.
  • At the federal level, providing a meaningful pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants.

LGBTQ+ Rights

Maura is a longtime advocate for LGBTQ+ rights. She will be a Governor who stands up for LGBTQ+ youth.

Maura has proudly served as the first openly gay Attorney General in the country. She’s seen her role as a way to open doors for future LGBTQ+ leaders and show young people what’s possible for them. Now, she’s running to be the first lesbian Governor in the country at a time when politicians across the country are launching heartless attacks on LGBTQ+ youth.

Maura’s message to the LGBTQ+ community, particularly young people, is that they are loved and that she will fight for them. That’s what she has done throughout her career. She brought the first successful challenge to DOMA when she was Civil Rights Chief in the Attorney General’s Office, helping to lay the groundwork for marriage equality nationwide. As AG, she championed non-discrimination protections for trans people in Massachusetts, pushed for gender neutral markers on a state and federal level, and stood up to the Trump administration’s numerous attacks on the LGBTQ+ community – from undermining anti-discrimination protections in health care, to rolling back protections for transgender students in schools, to banning transgender individuals in the military, and much more.

As Governor, Maura will continue to stand up to efforts to infringe on LGBTQ+ rights and work to ensure that everyone in Massachusetts can live a happy, healthy, authentic life. That includes:

  • Adopting gender neutral markers on more official documents.
  • Banning the LGBTQ+ panic defense, which is a legal strategy that allows a defendant to claim a victim’s sexual orientation or gender identity/expression is to blame for their crime.
  • Streamlining the process of co-parent adoption.
  • Supporting comprehensive, LGBTQ-inclusive, consent-focused, and medically accurate sex education.
  • Ending the ban on LGBTQ+ blood donations.
  • Advocating for passage of the Equality Act at the federal level.

Reproductive Freedom

With our reproductive rights under attack like never before, Maura will ensure patients and providers are protected here in Massachusetts.

Maura knows that reproductive freedom is under threat like never before. It’s a direct attack on women, people of color, and the LGBTQ+ community. With Roe v. Wade overturned, our next governor needs to continue to protect access to safe and legal abortion in Massachusetts, break down systemic barriers to these services, and expand access to comprehensive reproductive care for all. Maura will work closely with legislative leaders, public health experts, and advocates like the Beyond ROE Coalition to ensure Massachusetts remains a beacon of hope for all who are seeking care.

Maura has long been a strong advocate for access to reproductive care. Before she was AG, she defended Massachusetts’ Buffer Zone Law to protect patients from harassment at health centers, investigated crisis pregnancy centers for deceptive practices, led efforts to protect the public safety of abortion providers, and worked on litigations in various federal courts to defend access to abortion.

As AG, Maura has challenged unconstitutional abortion restrictions across the country and took on the Trump administration for its attacks on birth control access, Title X, and abortion via telehealth. She secured a settlement with an advertising company to stop them from targeting advertisements around health centers that provide abortion care. She was also an early and strong supporter of the ACCESS Law, which expanded access to contraception, and the ROE Act, which removed several anti-abortion restrictions from Massachusetts law in 2020. And while she was Co-Chair of the Democratic Attorneys General Association, it became the first and only Democratic campaign committee to require candidates to publicly state their support for abortion rights in order to receive endorsements.

While there is not currently a federal abortion ban and abortion remains legal in Massachusetts, in her role as Attorney General, Maura has pledged that she will never enforce such a ban.

As Governor, Maura will stand for reproductive freedom by:

  • Shielding providers and patients from civil and criminal liability for performing and receiving reproductive or gender-affirming care.
  • Protecting providers from licensing-related consequences for performing reproductive and gender-affirming care services that are legal in Massachusetts.
  • Prohibiting Executive Department agencies from cooperating with extradition requests or investigations by other states into providers, clinics or patients who deliver or receive reproductive and gender-affirming care services that are legal in Massachusetts.
  • Barring Massachusetts police from providing information or assistance to federal agencies, other state law enforcement or private citizens who are seeking to take legal action against someone for providing or receiving services that are legal in Massachusetts.
  • Increasing access to emergency contraception by calling on the Department of Public Health to issue a statewide standing order for individuals to access it at no cost at a pharmacy.
  • Mandating health insurers cover reproductive and gender affirming care, including abortion, with no deductibles, co-pays or cost-sharing requirements
  • Ensuring reproductive and gender-affirming health care providers’ home addresses remain confidential Permitting abortions after 24 weeks of pregnancy in cases of a severe fetal anomaly. Working to enact other recommendations of the Beyond ROE Coalition.
  • Ensuring every Massachusetts resident can access quality affordable health care, including abortion care, contraception, STI testing and treatment, and gender-affirming care.
  • Supporting comprehensive, LGBTQ-inclusive, consent-focused, and medically accurate sex education.
  • Fulfilling the recommendations of the Massachusetts Racial Inequities in Maternal Health Commission and - advancing legislation to address racial disparities in maternal health outcomes.
  • Expanding access to and insurance coverage of doula care.
  • Providing free menstrual products in places of incarceration, shelters, schools, and beyond.
  • Advancing efforts to protect patients, doctors, and staff at reproductive health clinics from violence, harassment, threats and intimidation.
  • Providing medication abortion access on all college campuses, with appropriate support for community colleges and other higher education institutions that do not have health centers or only offer limited health services.
  • Opposing the Hyde amendment and any other efforts to restrict access to abortion care.

Transportation

Public transportation is a key building block for economic mobility in Massachusetts. Maura will work to ensure our public transportation system is safe, reliable, and accessible throughout the state.

Maura knows that if we are going to create jobs in every region of our state, if we are going to reduce costs that are crushing our families, if we are going to do something about our climate crisis – then we have to invest in our transportation system. That starts with fixing our crumbling bridges and roads. And it means dramatically investing in our public transportation – our subway, trains, and buses. We’ve just received an influx of federal funding, and the next Governor will oversee how it is spent. Maura will make sure that no region, no community is ignored.

Public transportation is a key building block for economic mobility in Massachusetts. Our residents and businesses need a public transportation system they can rely on to get them home, to work, to doctor’s appointments safely and on time. Done well, transportation infrastructure investments generate jobs, good neighborhoods, and environmental progress, and can make more affordable housing regions practical commuting options. Done poorly, transportation projects can worsen inequity, lead to disinvestment, and contribute to climate change. Disinvestment in transportation, or in maintenance, can strangle economic growth.

Massachusetts has seen both sides of this dichotomy. We had the first rapid transit system in the country – which now means we have the oldest system, most in need of the unglamorous demands of repair and maintenance. We also have, on the country’s oldest public transit line, new cars, extensions and stations, including in Somerville and soon in Medford. In Massachusetts, we have seen economic transformation from smart infrastructure investments: Route 128 and the tech revolution, Logan Airport in the 1950s, the Turnpike Extension and the revival of Boston, the extensions of the Red Line south to Quincy and north to Somerville and Alewife, and the Big Dig’s impact on the Seaport, North End, and Charlestown.

Here’s what Maura will focus on:

  • Increasing investments in public transportation, including regional transit authorities, with the help of federal funding.
  • Shifting rail service patterns to serve throughout the day instead of a rush-hour focus. Technology and the pandemic have changed commuting patterns, and we should adjust accordingly.
  • Advancing and build transformative projects: West-East Rail to Springfield and Pittsfield and the Inland Route, South Coast Rail, the Allston Multi-Modal project, the Red-Blue Connector and the Extension of the Blue Line to Lynn.
  • Electrifying public transportation so that all modes operate on 100 percent clean power by 2040, starting with school and MBTA buses by 2030.
  • Putting 1 million electric vehicles on the road by 2030 by increasing point of sale incentives for used vehicles and low-costs electric vehicles.
  • Prioritizing public spending on electric vehicle charging infrastructure to projects that benefit low- and moderate-income households and overburdened communities.
  • Ending the sale of new cars and trucks powered by gasoline or diesel by 2035, including making all public fleet purchases electric by 2030.
  • Increasing investments in electric vehicle infrastructure and strong incentives for their adoption, including for heavy duty vehicles, as well as pedestrian walkways, and safe, expanded bike lanes.
  • Establishing a community-based transportation equity program to support the projects that local communities most need.

Voting Rights

Maura is committed to protecting and expanding access to the ballot in Massachusetts and across the country.

The 2020 presidential election made clear that there are two forces in our country: those fighting to protect our democracy and those trying to undermine it. Across the country, people of color are being disenfranchised, and disinformation and violent rhetoric continue to spread across digital spaces. Protecting the integrity of our democracy and expanding access to it have been top priorities for Maura. In 2020, she convened a task force to protect voters from intimidation, led a voter education campaign that included materials for people who are incarcerated, and took multistate legal action to assist officials in other states to make sure every vote counted.

But she knows we still have a lot of work left to do to make sure that everyone not only has the right to vote, but is able to use it. As Governor, she will focus on:

  • Passing the VOTES Act in Massachusetts, including same day voter registration and election day voting, and making voting more accessible to people who are incarcerated.
  • At the federal level, passing the Freedom to Vote Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act.
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