Local News
4:28 pm
Wed January 29, 2014

DeLeo Pledges Progress On Minimum Wage, DCF, Gun Violence

A day after the State of the Commonwealth and the State of the Union addresses, Massachusetts House Speaker Robert Deleo unveiled his priorities for the coming year.
President Obama pressed his so called opportunity agenda. Governor Patrick vowed to tackle inequality. And on Wednesday, Speaker Deleo pledged to take on poverty.

Massachusetts House Speaker Robert DeLeo during a press conference at the Statehouse in Boston Thursday, April 21, 2011 where he discussed and unveiled legislation designed to overhaul the state Probation Department.
A file photo of Massachusetts House Speaker RobertDeLeo during a press conference at the Statehouse in Boston in 2011.
Credit (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)

“We need to make sure that we extend the circle of opportunity from Boston to the Berkshires, from Cape Ann to the South Coast, from Fall River to Fitchburg.”
Deleo promised to raise the minimum wage and to reform unemployment insurance. Last year, the Senate voted to raise the minimum wage from $8 to $11. Deleo didn’t say how much of an increase he’s looking for.
In the speech, the Speaker said he'd address problems at the department of children and families.
“If funding is the problem, we will address funding.”
The speaker also said the house will take up legislation aimed at reducing gun violence and domestic violence. He didn’t provide any details.
Though Governor Patrick’s State of the Commonwealth speech attracts more attention, Deleo arguably has more influence over what gets done. And while Patrick is in his final year in office, Deleo could serve up to three more years at the head of the House.