Officials alert public to possibility of measles exposure
The first case of measles in Massachusetts this year has been confirmed. The infected individual lives in the greater Boston area, and visited multiple locations across the state during their infectious period. Measles has been on the rise across the United States, with a large outbreak in a suburban New York county prompting a state of emergency just last week. Since measles can be spread through the air and can remain alive in the air for up to two hours, it is highly infectious. People without the vaccine are, of course, the most vulnerable.
Massachusetts secretary of state already concerned about return rate for the 2020 Census
William Galvin has been Massachusetts’ secretary of state since 1995. Though he has been through two census counts, he is particularly worried about the 2020 census. Massachusetts has always been a difficult state for the census, due in part to its large immigrant population and high number of students. With President Trump’s plan to include a question about citizenship, the return rate could be even lower, and Galvin is not happy. A Democrat in a state with 1 million immigrants, about 25 percent of whom are undocumented, Galvin is fighting back against Trump, saying that his plan has only one purpose, which is “to scare people from responding.”
Electric scooters come to Massachusetts with launch in Brookline
The scooters ubiquitous in other cities and college campuses across the United States are now in Massachusetts. A pilot program with 200 scooters will be running in Brookline until the fall. Brookline closely borders Boston, where the scooters are not allowed yet because it is unclear as of now if they are illegal in the state of Massachusetts. Since Boston is a restricted area, scooters are allowed to cross into the city but a trip cannot be started there. However, one reporter found his scooter slowing down when he crossed from Brookline into Boston, a safety hazard. Also casting a shadow on the scooters’ success was an injury at their launch. A woman fell off a scooter and was sent to Beth Israel Deaconess Medical center, where she received four stitches. Supporters tout the electric scooter as a more sustainable mode of transportation to driving while still being convenient.
Median home sale prices in Massachusetts increased this year
The year-to-day median home price sale in Massachusetts, which currently sits at $356,000, has increased by 4.9 percent in the past year. However, seven of the 14 counties located in Massachusetts have year-to-day median home price sales that fall below the statewide average. The general trend is that it has become more expensive to live in areas closer to Boston and cheaper to live in communities further from the city. Two exceptions to this rule are Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket, which are far from the city but have year-to-day median home prices well above the state average. Though counties further from the city offer more affordable living options, residing in these areas present some challenges for workers who commute to Boston. These include traffic congestion and sometimes unreliable Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) services.