AMHERST, Mass. (WWLP) – In just about eight weeks, there will be a new face and a new party moving in to the Corner Office at the State House. After eight years under the leadership of Governor Deval Patrick, Massachusetts voters can expect some changes.
Massachusetts Democrats want the next Republican governor to prove he can work with leaders in their party. And while there are pressing issues that need attention throughout the Commonwealth, some voters told 22News that they hope Charlie Baker doesn’t forget about causes that were important to Deval Patrick during his time in office.
“Environmental issues and the use of fossil fuels. I hope he’s going to continue Deval Patrick’s legacy of really trying to bring renewable energy to the state of Massachusetts, and that that doesn’t fall by the wayside,” said Abbie Jenks of Pelham.
Baker has accused Patrick, who campaigned for Martha Coakley, of poor management — from the slow rollout of the state’s medical marijuana dispensaries, to welfare fraud, and scrutiny of the foster system, after the tragic death of a child. Voters told 22News DCF needs more support to continue their crucial mission.
“The Department of Children and Families is probably one of the hardest working agencies in our state. They’re so underfunded, so understaffed. They’re doing amazing work with what little resources they have,” said Linda Pisano of Amherst.
During a meeting this week, Patrick and Baker talked about issues like the rocky launch of the state’s health care website, and the challenge of carving out a new budget.