BOSTON (WWLP) – Governor Baker delivered his annual State of the Commonwealth address virtually Tuesday night from the State House.
The governor set some lofty goals for the Commonwealth, including widespread COVID-19 vaccinations, re-opening the economy, and much more.
The 2021 State of the Commonwealth address was different than the one he’s delivered in years prior. Typically, Governor Baker begins his speech by outlining all of the good things that happened in the Commonwealth over the previous year.
Last year, Baker used the speech to commit to a 2050 goal for net-zero carbon emissions and to call for $135 million in new MBTA operating funds.
This time around, Governor Baker is expected to address the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, the racial injustice that led to political change and the turmoil in Washington. He was urged by his colleagues in the legislature to change his tone this year, setting an optimistic outlook for the future while defining a ‘new normal.’
“This legislation is vital to allowing MassDOT and the MBTA to commence planning on the next Capital Investment Plan, and to continuing this administration’s thoughtful and data driven approach to rebuilding, modernizing, and expanding the capacity of the Commonwealth’s transportation system,” Baker said.
Governors usually give the annual speech in the House Chamber during a joint session of the legislature attended by hundreds of lawmakers, state officials, and distinguished guests. Since COVID-19 hit Massachusetts, House and Senate leadership have moved to virtual legislative sessions.