Senate President Spilka Announces Reimagining Massachusetts: Post-Pandemic Resiliency Committee

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BOSTON – Massachusetts Senate President Karen Spilka (D-Ashland) today, February 11 announced a Senate Special Committee on Reimagining Massachusetts: Post-Pandemic Resiliency.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has upended assumptions about the way we live, work, and travel in Massachusetts. It has also laid bare long-standing inequities in various aspects of our economy and communities. As we look to the future as we recover from the pandemic, we have a rare opportunity—and a responsibility—to question the status quo and reimagine the path towards continued vibrancy for the Commonwealth,” said Senate President Spilka.

“Massachusetts has historically been a leader in innovation, and we are well poised to lead in the “new normal.” But we must ensure that our efforts are integrated across multiple areas. This committee will serve as a hub to synthesize information and share best practices that have been developed in response to COVID-19, as well as a forum for new ideas as to how to move forward. The committee will also work to actively ensure that historical inequities are addressed,” said the Democrat from Ashland.

“COVID-19 has impacted every aspect of our lives; this committee acknowledges that and asks how we help direct the change we know lies ahead. While the newly-created COVID-19 committee will be focused on pandemic response and the challenges posed by COVID-19 today, the Reimagining Mass committee will be focused on tomorrow and the next day. We have not experienced anything like this pandemic in a hundred years, and this crisis deserves our attention and our best efforts at mitigating its effects,” said Sen. Spilka.

“The Reimagining Mass committee doesn’t look like anything the Senate has done in the past, but that’s intentional. We will need collaboration and creativity to reimagine our future. But it does draw on the best practices from the working groups the Senate developed last session—on revenue, transportation, COVID-19 and racial justice. These working groups were cross-functional and called on experts from across the Commonwealth, as well as the experience of the Senate members and their constituents. The efforts of the COVID-19 working group resulted in legislation such as vote-by-mail, telehealth, more flexibility for municipalities to work remotely, expansive outdoor and take out options for restaurants, and other innovations spurred by the pandemic. It is my hope that this committee will catalyze innovation in a similar way,” said the Senate President.

“I look forward to the Senate Special Committee on Reimagining Massachusetts: Post-Pandemic Resiliency acting as a forum for oversight, coordination and ideas as we create a new vision for the Commonwealth’s future,” she said.


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