Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker is proposing a $137 million annual increase in the excise tax paid on real estate transfers that he says would generate $1 billion over the next decade to protect properties and help cities and towns cope with the impact of climate change. For real!

"There is no program in Massachusetts that's going to put a billion dollars on the table to put the kind of resiliency programming in place that we're going to need to deal with the intensity and frequency of storms," Baker said in a release.

"Over the last four years, we have increasingly witnessed the effects that climate change has on communities and infrastructure across the Commonwealth, and know that the investments we make today are critical to ensure cities and towns are prepared to face the challenges of tomorrow," Baker said.

Have they opened a pot shop at the State House? What the hell is he talking about? Can he document any of that?

Marc Pacheco

Senate President Karen Spilka (D-Ashland) is vowing to make climate change "the" priority this session and Sen. Marc Pacheco (D-Taunton) has his very own committee on the issue. Isn't that special?

Let's examine the record. Baker's total compensation package went from $151,000 to $252,000 just three weeks ago. The legislature and the constitutional officers have gotten three pay raises in two years. Revenue collections in December collapsed quicker than Liz Warren's chances of being elected president, and appear to be in free fall for January as well. But let's raise taxes and hand out pay raises.

Baker has rocks in his head if he thinks the people of Massachusetts want or should be saddled with new taxes for climate change initiatives or anything else while the roads and bridges are crumbling beneath our feet and the fat cats are getting fatter.

Tell Baker to take his tax increase and his climate change and shove them in one of the potholes that threaten to swallow my car on any given road in the Commonwealth.

Enough is enough with these loons.

Barry Richard is the host of The Barry Richard Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from noon to 3 p.m. Contact him at and follow him on Twitter @BarryJRichard58. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author. 

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