Grace Ross among advocates calling for empowerment of local officials to combat foreclosure spike [plus video] | Passage of a one-sentence bill (H 4553) filed late last month would give cities and towns the clear authority necessary to use their health and safety powers to implement programs like pre-foreclosure mediation without expanding the rights of municipalities.
State invests millions to close gap between shelter and services for homeless | “We’re building more inclusive communities, providing pathways to better economic and social opportunities for working families, individuals and our most vulnerable to reach stability and end cycles of generational poverty and homelessness,” Gov. Charlie Baker said. Worcester is included in the $90 million initiative. Find out how and where.
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Tips from the Pros: Small business owners, employees should consider staying flexible with FSAs | “These flexible spending programs have been around for quite some time, but typically have only been popular with larger companies. Smaller businesses tend to see reservations from both employer and employee perspectives.” Vanessa Costa, cofounder of a Worcester-based benefits management firm, weighs in on why now might be the right time to stretch your comfort zone and get a little more flexible, no matter the size of your business.
Editorial: There’s a Better Way to address panhandling problems | An innovative approach to combating homelessness and panhandling is about to celebrate its first anniversary. Despite promising results the program has not caught on. One of the many cities nationally to attempt punitive measures to reduce panhandling, Worcester should consider if There’s a Better Way.
Sun Spots with Hitch [Vol. 85]: For Paris Cinema, one last swing at glory | The Rio Olympics are in full bloom, and as usual we Americans are eating up the Summer Games. Michael Phelps and Simone Biles, the volleyball girls, the Muslim fencer and green pool water. The sports-adjacent among us now have months of athletic conversation-starters tucked away for just the right social occasion. Which is really what this global spectacle is all about. Speaking of global spectacles — Hitch in one corner, Paris Cinema in the other. You’re going to want to see this!
Inbox [Aug. 17]: HECCMA picks Maloney for board chair, McGovern announces $7.3M in college-readiness grants, Providence and Worcester Railroad set for $126M sale, Hanover Insurance given five-star rating | Interesting and worthwhile things happen every day in our community. Alas, we can’t cover them all. That’s where Inbox comes in, to offer readers an easily digestible compilation of interesting and noteworthy items you and your neighbors keep telling us about. Have a release or a photo you or your group would like to share? Let us know by emailing it to firstname.lastname@example.org. Be sure to include a link to the full release on your site or Facebook page so we can include it and send Sun members your way.
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Worcester-Providence rail plans picking up steam
Boston Surface Railway Co. is in negotiations with city and rail officials on a timeframe to begin construction of a commuter rail platform at Union Station next year. Indeed, there are a number of items causing serious momentum to build behind the initiative to connect Worcester to Providence and beyond.
Sun Shine: Brattle Street, last stop on the way to freedom
“Jeffry was fired from his job as a teacher, he could not go shopping and had to hide in his home. His family threw him out of the house at 17 years old, but even at home Jeffry was not allowed to eat dinner unless he brought his own utensils and plate. He was not even allowed to worship at his church.” From Jamaica, where homophobia runs rampant, Jeffry made his way to Worcester, where he found not just acceptance but caring assistance. Sloane M. Perron tells the story.