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Updates from around the state - June 19

Somerville/Medford (Jehlen senate district)

Sofia Wolman: Eric and I have been committing a lot of time to Jehlen's district, mainly at the Shaw's in Porter Square. We each get about 10-15 signatures/hour there. We're going out now for another go at it. We were going to go to the Davis Square market, but the rain is keeping us away. Paul has our sheets so I've sort of lost track of where we're at, but I feel good that we'll make the 1200.

Marilyn Levin: First tried Star Market on Beacon St., Somerville. It was dead, so I went to Foodmaster in Somerville, also a liquor store. Did a couple of hrs there. Pace was pretty good but miss a lot of people because of two different entrances. Also, many immigrants and too many people from Arlington – it’s on Arl/Som line. Then went to Whole Foods, Medford. Steady stream, also two entrances, a Starbucks & liquor store. Mainly Medford and Somerville shoppers. Good response.

A woman who signed had a suggestion that Sun after Catholic church services would be a good place to petition. Mainly older people, all registered voters. She suggested St. Rafael’s in West Medford.

Bette Keva, Marblehead/Swampscott

6/14: Jobs and military spending is the most oft-cited reason people decide against signing the petition.

I've got 153 signatures!

Sunny Robinson, Gloucester

6/14: Up here on Cape Ann where we have been working on this, people have been very responsive. We have half our district sigs verified and hope by Friday to have 2/3rds! By and large for us it has been enjoyable.

6/15: For Gloucester we have 125 verified sigs, and for Rockport 70 ...so 195. Our city clerk here says to have at least 15% above what you need. So that's 230. We have a few more in at Gloucester and Rockport both, which ought to yield us about 205. Plus I got turned in to me today another 14. Unfortunately they can't go to the clerk until the 27th, but they have been turning things around in 24 hrs, so I am sure I can get them verified and still into Cambridge on the 28th or 29th.

2nd Essex

Rachel Williams, Groveland, 6/15: Have 35 signatures so far and plan on attending a number of town events in next few weeks!

Barb Haack, West Newbury, 6/15: I will be going to Byfield Days tomorrow morning. At the moment I have about 60 signatures.

DiDomenico Senate district (Cambridge)

6/15: Michelle Surka, Sara Katz and Alex Suarez were at the Cambridge main library Thursday. Three people were too many, even two were maybe too many. The Whole Foods on Prospect St. did not work; you can’t stand in the parking lot, the sidewalk is narrow, and there is a Spare Change vendor also working that area.

Eileen Kurkoski (Waltham)

6/16: Getting sigs here in Waltham is a bit more challenging than Newton - with 2 reps who have 4 out of 9 overlapping wards; those 4 wards vote in the same places. The map I got of streets/wards is 30x30 inches
so not easy to manage. When in doubt to save time I have them sign for both Lawn and Stanley's areas.

Today, Ann Glick, Nancy Wrenn, Pauline and I went to the Waltham farmer's market and a Moody St. fair.
Tomorrow Nancy and I will go to the service and picnic at First Parish, a Unitarian church.

6/18: This morning I dropped off at the town hall
100 sigs. for Tom Stanley and
50 for John Lawn
(All but 20 of these were obtained this weekend.)

The town clerk said they will be ready by Friday. Because of the confusion re. rep. wards I suspect
at least 10 will be knocked off of each.

The Shaws on River St is probably our best weekday bet for John Lawn sigs. and the Shaws on north
Lexington St best for Tom Stanley; both would be busier at lunchtime or from 5-6:30pm.
We will be trying the library between 5-6:30pm too. It is in Stanley territory but should attract both.
Ann and Nancy are helping as much as they can. Pauline wants to help more. I touched base with
Lois in the Watertown John Lawn area. She is not having much luck there so is considering the River St. Shaws.

Isabel Espinal, Amherst

6/16: Rick Purcell and I had a really good time in Holyoke today at the Peace March and family day. We got a lot of signatures and also registered people t o vote (who then signed the petition)

Rick Purcell, Holyoke

6/16: Great time, and we collected a total of 75 signatures for Holyoke today. May I make a suggestion, most 4th of July celebrations are actually not celebrated with Rockets Bomb Bursting in Air on the 4th of July, but the firework displays are 4 or 5 days before hand, this would be a great time to collect as there are usually Huge Crowds from neighboring towns that attend. Holyoke's is on 6/29 with a raindate of 6/30, and some of your cites/towns maybe different. Good Luck everyone lets get this done.

Boston/Cambridge

Virginia Pratt: I got between 40 - 50 signatures this weekend. I went to a block party in Cambridge and to 28 signatures there. I collected a few at CCB. And, I went to a park in East Boston near Orient Heigths and got a few from East Boston, Winthrop, and Somerville. -- I found the park in East Boston to be a really great place to collect signatures. Had it been a warmer sunner day on Saturday I think I would have been able to get more signatures. I would also recommend block party -- were people are warm and friendly.

Maryellen Kurkulos, Fall River

Fall River: we have just over 100 in the Seventh Bristol district. As far as the other two (D6 and D8), we have 88 altogether so the final push is for D7 alone. I'm confident that I can get at least 50 certified in D7 this week and am deploying new troops (my volunteers have fallen through except for one person). So my aim is to get 60 more certified by the end of this week.

The trouble I've had is the process of organizing w so many unknowns and schedules that don't coincide. And of course folks not following through. I suppose this is all second nature to you veterans but it's been such a valuable and steep learning experience for me especially bc we're getting trained in basic civic activity - something that I certainly have been pretty clueless about. So on many levels this is brilliant campaign. Thank you all for pushing it through.

Becky Pierce, Dorchester (Sen Hart district)

6/18: We figure we are 100-150 signatures away from being assured of getting the Budget for All referendum on the ballot this November! So we need a last big push this weekend.

Today I turned in 614 Hart signatures and 189 Chang-Diaz signatures from Hart-district folks to City Hall, bringing our total turned in to 1873 Hart. I will go in Tuesday morning with what we get this weekend and Monday, and find out how many were validated from today's turn-in. The Election Board's monthly meeting is Thursday, and that is when the validated signatures are officially certified, then given back to us to take to the Secretary of State, to put the question on the ballot in our district.

So we should know for sure by Friday that we've made it!

I'll send a note around with updated numbers on Tuesday, and another one Friday, so stay tuned!

If we finish as expected on Friday, we'll have a week and two weekends before the July 3 final deadline. Many of us are already planning to gather signatures during that time in the Chang-Diaz district, which so far only has not quite half the needed validated signatures (563 as of today). So please join in if you can and help Right to the City, BWA, NEU4J, the 25% Coalition, MAHT, Project HIP-HOP and others working on that district to finish it up in time.

(Later) 140 Chang-Diaz just came through mail slot from NEU4J. Now I'm a little less pessimistic, but still holding my breath.

Pat Salomon, 4th Berkshire

6/18: This week I've done little but I'll focus more next WK.

Maggie Constan, Milton

6/18: We've handed in 6 signed petition with 4 outstanding which will be turned in before June 21. The town clerk will let us know on Monday, June 25, what the count is of approved signatures. We will continue to get signatures until the deadline in July.