Maura Healey Sworn in as Massachusetts Governor

Photo by Soben Ung

Boston –Governor Elect Maura Healey and Lieutenant Governor Kimberly Driscoll swore in on January 5th. She is the first woman and openly gay person ever elected as Governor in the Massachusetts history.

She thanked Governor Charlie Baker for his care and integrity over the past eight years. She began with an aggressive agenda to address the housing crisis, improve transportation, and mitigate climate change.  “We have to make Massachusetts a place where people can afford to call home. Our people can’t realize their dreams until we end the nightmare of high cost,” she said.

To solve this problem, Governor Healey pledged to file for a Secretariat of Housing to work with across the government, city and towns to build more housing and homes on unused, state-owned lands. She also asked citizens to join this effort by rezoning and/or preserving existing homes.

In her first budget, she will create a new fund called Mass Reconnect. The legislation will offer free community college to students of age 25 without a college degree.

“The state of our trains, and roads and bridges is unacceptable. Let’s acknowledge that we can’t have a functioning economy without a functioning team,” she said. Governor Healey said she will also provide funding to hire 1,000 additional workers focused on the operation of MBTA, which will take place within the first year of her administration.

Moreover, the Governor said her administration will center around equity. “We cannot reach our potential as a state when so many are held back from reaching their own. People of color, people of disabilities, women, LGBTQ residents continue to face barriers that have held them back for generations”, she said, declaring that she will direct every agency in her administration to conduct a full equity compliance. “Let Massachusetts be the place that shines the light on every systemic barrier, and then does the hard work to break it down,” she said.

Her first executive order is to create the country’s first Cabinet-level climate chief, and for the first time in the state’s history, she proposed that at least 1% of the state budget be dedicated to environmental and energy agencies. “Let’s commit to making climate innovation the next big investment,” she said.

She called on unity between party lines in Massachusetts despite the widespread political divisiveness in the country. “We will act with empathy and equity. As your governor, I promise you, these principles will be my north star.” She ensures that Massachusetts will welcome people and businesses throughout the country, and that they will be included and protected. “The state will never relinquish the right to reproductive freedom,” she said.

Governor Maura Healey was sworn in by Madam Senate President Karen Spilka. Former United State Secretary John Kerry and U.S Senator Ed Markey were also in the attendance.