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Governor Baker, Lt. Governor Polito visit STEM Starter Academy

STEM Starter Academy Visit-7

Governor Baker and Lt. Governor Polito both got a chance to visit the first day of the STEM Starter Academy at Bunker Hill Community College on Monday, August 22, 2016. Governor Baker, Lieutenant Governor Polito, House Speaker DeLeo, Education Secretary Peyser and Higher Education Commissioner Santiago observed and engaged with two classrooms during their visit.

Many enrolled in the STEM Starter Academy are Chelsea High School students from BHCC’s TRiO Chelsea program, which helps students complete college coursework while still in high school. With thirty-five percent of TRiO graduates intending to pursue careers in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) fields, the STEM Starter Academy is a great way to help jump-start students’ major-specific courses, allowing them to complete their degree programs on time or even early.

Read more from BHCC and view photos.

Governor Baker on hand for ‘topping off’ of Springfield factory to manufacture new MBTA rail cars

On August 26, Governor Baker joined local elected officials and state transportation leaders to recognize a major milestone in CRRC MA’s construction of its $95 million factory in Springfield by signing the last beam to be hoisted atop the factory as part of a “Topping Off” ceremony. Once completed, the factory will manufacture 284 subway cars for the MBTA: 132 for the Red Line, and 152 for the Orange Line.

“Replacing cars nearly four decades old will help deliver a more reliable and comfortable rider experience,” said Governor Baker. “We remain focused on investing in the core infrastructure at the T to improve our transit system that so many people rely on and we are pleased to celebrate this that also creates local jobs and supports Springfield’s economy.”

“Topping Off” is the term used by ironworkers to indicate that the final piece of steel is being hoisted into place on a building, bridge, or other large structure, and in this case the factory has now reached its maximum height. As part of the ceremony, Governor Baker led officials in the signing of the last beam to be hoisted atop the facility, signifying the completion of a significant portion of its construction.

Construction of the factory is running ahead of schedule, with other projects including a 2,240-foot dynamic test track, and staging/storage area. The project is projected to be completed in the fall of 2017.

MassWorks grant helping to rebuild Plymouth’s T Wharf

Joining local Plymouth officials and marine businesses, Governor Baker was in Plymouth on August 31 to celebrate the beginning of construction on the new T Wharf in Plymouth’s Harbor. The town received a $4 million MassWorks award during the 2015 competitive grant round, of which $2 million will be used to support the construction of the new T Wharf. MassWorks funding leverages $1.25 million in local funding to complete the project.

“Across the Commonwealth we are investing in projects that will leverage our resources, encourage private investment and spur economic activity,” said Governor Baker during remarks at Woods Seafood in Plymouth. “Here in Plymouth, this project means more support for our commercial fishermen, aqua-culture, boating, tourism, and trade.”

The Wharf is vital to Plymouth’s blue economy as it supports existing and proposed commercial activities. The existing structure was in a state of disrepair and could no longer support the existing demand of commercial activities as parts of the wharf were closed because of unsafe conditions. The new T Wharf structure will provide the necessary infrastructure to grow the Town of Plymouth’s aquaculture industry and support the 200 – 300 jobs already generated by activities in Plymouth Harbor.

In Fairhaven, Lt. Governor Polito tours Union Wharf

Greg Desrosiers/TSM

Part of the Commonwealth’s SouthCoast region, Fairhaven’s waterfront is an important part of the town’s economy. The Union Wharf  recently underwent restoration, including to the eastern and western seawalls, and that work will continue with the support of a Seaport Economic Council grant. The $950,173 investment by the Council will support Phase 2 of the project, restoring more than 110 feet of seawall on the west side.

“Hopefully we’ll attract more of the recreational fishing opportunities to bring more people to this area,” said Lt. Governor Karyn Polito during a visit to the Wharf on August 31. “You bring more people to this area they’ll want to go to restaurants, use the hotel and maybe come again.”

Read More: Lt. Governor Polito Tours Fairhaven’s Union Wharf, Learns About Waterfront

With college students returning to school, Lt. Gov. Polito helps fire officials launch Campus Fire Safety Month

During an event at the Statehouse, Lt. Governor Polito proclaimed September as Campus Fire Safety Month and joined fire safety advocates and building officials in their call for greater awareness of the risks of off-campus housing, where all five campus-related fire deaths have occurred over the past decade. Apartments with no working smoke alarms, no working carbon monoxide alarms, and only one means of escape pose the greatest threat to students.

“Massachusetts is the home away from home to thousands of college students, and many upper classmen live off-campus, where potentially dangers are much more common,” said Lt. Governor Polito. “Every student has the right to safe housing and that includes working smoke alarms and two exit points in the event of an emergency.”

A group of fire chiefs, building officials, college safety officials and campus fire safety advocates have been meeting over the summer to share strategies for enforcing fire and building codes in off-campus housing. They are also launching a public awareness campaign about the importance of working smoke alarms and two ways out, called “Best Roomates Evah!” Go to www.BestRoommatesEvah.org.

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