Charlie Baker in 2018 Governor's State of the State speeches


On Drugs: Reduce opioid prescribing and drive Fentanyl off our streets

We began in the midst of an opioid crisis in which deaths, overdoses and prescriptions had been growing by double digits for more than a decade. It was the worst case of negative momentum I'd ever seen. Today, with your help and support, we've reduced opioid prescribing by 29%. And overdose deaths have dropped for the first time in over a decade by 10%. In addition, we have to deal with Fentanyl. Fentanyl was present in less than 30% of overdose deaths in 2014 but was present in more than 80% of overdose deaths in 2017. Federal, state and local law enforcement agencies are working this issue hard. But we have more to do to drive this deadly drug off our streets.

A bipartisan fentanyl bill that makes it easier to arrest and convict dealers and traffickers is in your hands. I ask you to enact it as soon as possible.

Source: 2018 State of the State speech to Massachusetts legislature Jan 23, 2018

On Health Care: Health Connector: replace mess with hope

We began with a Health Connector that was, by all accounts, a mess. Today it just finished its third consecutive positive open enrollment. Providing more than 240,000 working families with affordable health care coverage.

We began with a state hospital in Bridgewater that for decades was beset by a series of terrible tragedies--yet nothing was done. Today, Bridgewater State Hospital is a completely different place. And families who never expected anything to get better finally have hope.

Source: 2018 State of the State speech to Massachusetts legislature Jan 23, 2018

On Social Security: Make Massachusetts the most age-friendly state in the nation

Last spring, I appointed a Council to address aging. With a goal of making Massachusetts the most age-friendly state in the nation. The council has provided a platform to think beyond public programs and to draw on expertise in technology, health care, business & innovation.

We're pleased to announce that AARP has formally designated Massachusetts as one of only two age-friendly states in the country. We'll also be increasing state support for the Councils on Aging to the highest level ever.

Source: 2018 State of the State speech to Massachusetts legislature Jan 23, 2018

On Technology: Hundreds of millions to fix decades of neglect on the MBTA

We've allocated more than $700 million in local road and bridge funding--the largest investment in years. And another $3.6 billion has been spent on hundreds of road re-surfacing and improvement projects. All in we've repaired or replaced 80 bridges and paved enough miles of roadway to crisscross the Commonwealth five times.

Our public transportation system collapsed during the brutal winter of 2015. But three years later the T is investing hundreds of millions of dollars more on upgrading its core infrastructure than it has in years, modernizing its operations and rescuing projects like the Green Line Extension.

There is more to do on the T. Much more. But for the first time in years the plan to modernize the system is in place and moving forward. Fixing decades of neglect doesn't happen overnight. But make no mistake we will deliver the public transit system the people of this Commonwealth deserve.

Source: 2018 State of the State speech to Massachusetts legislature Jan 23, 2018

On Technology: High speed wifi in Western Massachusetts

When we took office, more than 50 communities in Western Massachusetts didn't have access to high speed internet services. I first heard about this when a local official told me horror stories about what life was like without it: students who often did homework sitting in the car next to the library after hours--to get access to their wifi. That community--Mt. Everett Regional High School--c'mon; the parking lot?--now has high speed internet. And the vast majority of the communities that had none when we took office either have it now or have plans to install it. Thanks to this Legislature's help with funding for the build out they will all have this must have infrastructure over the next two years.
Source: 2018 State of the State speech to Massachusetts legislature Jan 23, 2018

The above quotations are from 2018 Governor's State of the State speeches.
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Page last updated: Apr 22, 2018