State Representative, Hannah Kane, was the speaker at the September 25th meeting of the Shrewsbury Rotary Club. Hannah is no stranger to our club and it was great to welcome her back to speak with us.
Hannah gave a quick paced update on the 109th biennial session of the Massachusetts State legislature. Among the committees on which Hannah serves is Public Health and the Food Policy Council. She has also been giving substantial attention to mental health and substance abuse issues. She noted that Massachusets is a leader in combatting opioid abuse and noted that this is a major focus of District Attorney, Joe Early's committee on teens and tweens.
Representative Kane has filed 24 bills. Twelve of those are related to the marijuana ballot issue that was promoted by the industry. She favors requiring the industry to answer to five--and not just one--commissioners. She is also concerned about limiting marketing access to youth and favors requiring the industry to illustrate that 85% of its ad audience are over the age of 21.
Another of Hannah's bills has to do with good waste. She believes that we need to make it easier to donate food to programs to feed those who cannot afford food prices. She noted that we dispose of $700 worth of food per person per year which is both a disposal and an economic issue. She favors supervised medical parole for prisoners with terminal illnesses, which is both a humanitarian issue and a matter of the high cost of keeping these individuals incarcerated and cared for.
Other bills she supports propose the requirement of a fiscal note to be attached to any bill affecting municipalities (which she says will not go anywhere), proposing regional school transportation for students from Shrewsbury to Assabet, supporting the Lake Quinsigamond Commission and another extending the definition of affordable housing to mobile homes. 
Among the accomplishments of the legislative year are a pregnancy fairness act, increased survivor benefits for public safety officials' families. 
In addition to all of the above, Hannah is interested in some twenty initiative petitions