Humason appointed to Senate’s retail task force

Sen. Don Humason (R-Westfield) Photo Courtesy: The Westfield News

BOSTON, Mass. (MASenate.gov) – State Senator Don Humason (R – Westfield) has been appointed to the Senate’s newly-created Special Senate Task Force on the Local Retail Sector of the Commonwealth by Senate Minority Leader Bruce Tarr (R-Gloucester).

“This task force represents a great opportunity to gain a deeper understanding of a rapidly changing and vitally important sector of both our state and local economies,” said Senator Humason. “As a long-time supporter of policies that would help strengthen our retail economy, I look forward to digging into how we, as a state, can support local retailer’s efforts to grow and compete in our expanding, 21st century marketplace.”

Earlier this year, the Senate approved a measure to create a 17-member task force that will review and report on efforts to strengthen the local retail sector in the Commonwealth.

Joining Senator Humason on the panel:

  • Senator Michael Rodrigues (D – Freeport), who will chair the task force
  • Senators Vinny deMacedo (R – Plymouth)
  • Kathleen O’Connor Ives (D – Newburyport)
  • Michael Barrett (D – Lexington)
  • Jason Lewis (D – Melrose)
  • Julian Cyr (D – Truro)

The retailers appointed by Senate President Rosenberg:

  • Judy Herrell, owner of Herrell’s Ice Cream in Northampton
  • Peter Kavanaugh of La-Z-Boy Furniture Galleries in Dartmouth
  • Barry S. Rotman, Board Chair of Rotman’s Furniture in Worcester
  • Malcolm Sherman, a retail consultant with expertise in turning around struggling businesses

The retailers appointed by Senate Minority Leader Tarr:

  • Christopher Carlozzi, State Director of the National Federation of Independent Business
  • John Cahill of Landry & Arcani Rugs in Salem
  • Christopher Connolly, President of the Massachusetts State Automobile Dealers Association

The Senate’s order calls for a report to the Legislature of the group’s findings by June 2018.

Humason has long been an advocate in the legislature for strengthening the state’s retail economy, earning praise and endorsement from the National Federation of Independent Businesses. He has supported legislative efforts to create an annual sales tax holiday in the state and a reduction of the state’s sales tax, while opposing repeated attempts to increase the state’s minimum wage.

“While it will be helpful to examine the ways we can assist retailers, we also must recognize that laws we have enacted or could enact may be harmful to retailers as well, so I hope we include that in our discussions,” said Senator Humason.

Senator Humason represents the 2nd Hampden and Hampshire District, which consists of the cities of Agawam, Easthampton, Holyoke, Westfield, and parts of the city of Chicopee; and the towns of Granville, Montgomery, Russell, Southampton, Southwick and Tolland.

The Senator maintains a district office for the convenience of his constituents and encourages them to contact him at his district office at 64 Noble Street in Westfield, Massachusetts 01085, (413) 568-1366; or his Boston office, State House, Room 313A, Boston, Massachusetts 02133, (617) 722-1415. His email address is Donald.Humason@MASenate.gov.