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Kyle Cheney, State House News Service

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Strong testimony at State House hearing on immigration rules

Advocates for immigrants sat visibly frustrated as they listened to testimony that portrayed illegal immigrants as responsible for numerous crimes.

SJC rules party hosts not liable for underage BYOB drinking

Only hosts who supply alcohol to their visitors can be held legally responsible for off-premises damage caused by intoxicated guests the court ruled.

Legislative committee buries wind siting bill

Less than two years after it won overwhelming passage in the House and Senate, a bill intended to streamline the permitting process for land-based wind turbines was buried in study Tuesday by a legislative committee, likely denying the Patrick administration a long-held priority in its effort to increase renewable energy production.

SJC immigrant health care ruling expected to cost $150 million

The decision paves the way for thousands of legal Massachusetts immigrants to rejoin a heavily subsidized health program for low-income residents.

SJC says state must provide health coverage to legal immigrants

The program, known as the Commonwealth Care Bridge Program, unfairly discriminates against legal immigrants, the court ruled.

Report says fiscal squeeze on local aid expected to continue for towns

Towns may be forced to cope with revenue shortages for "the foreseeable future," according to a report by the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation.

AG would review health care providers’ market clout

Hospitals and health care providers that dominate a substantial share of the health industry would be subject to a "market impact review" to ensure that their clout isn't hurting consumers, according to a plan outlined Friday by Attorney General Martha Coakley.

Lots to do before state legislators begin their holiday

In typical, eleventh-hour fashion, lawmakers wrote a frenetic final chapter to the 2011 legislative session, blazing through bills to introduce casino gambling, protect transgender residents, and implement pension reforms that have languished for years on Beacon Hill.

Cost of health care seen rising steeply

Although tax collections are on the rebound, the state's rainy day fund is the third-highest in the nation, and the state has added 48,000 jobs this year, the Patrick administration's top finance official warned municipal leaders Tuesday to expect a "challenging" 2012 budget cycle with nearly 40 percent of the appropriations expected to be needed for health care programs.

State spent $93 million on illegal immigrants

About 1 percent of the $9.6 billion spent on Medicaid claims last fiscal year covered services for immigrants who couldn't prove their legal status.

State aproves average 4.8 health insurance rate hike

Administration regulators announced that they have approved an average 4.8 percent increase in base premiums for individuals and small businesses.

Federal cuts would slash Mass hospital funding

Mass. hospital funding may be in jeopardy as federal government considers budget cuts.

New bottle bill backers favor legislative route

Backers of a long-stalled effort to expand the state's 30-year-old bottle recycling law by adding a 5-cent deposit to the cost of bottled waters, juices and sports drinks have abandoned their push to take the plan to the voters in 2012, advocates told the News Service on Thursday.

Fed security chief counters Gov’s claims on Secure Communities

Janet Napolitano's comments put her directly at odds with Gov. Deval Patrick on a federal program that identifies illegal immigrants.

AG certifies 21 ballot questions, including life ending measures

Initiative petitions regulating medical marijuana, empowering terminally ill, suffering patients to take life-ending drugs moved toward the 2012 ballot.