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Sens. Spilka, Brownsberger, and Rosenberg spoke to reporters after the Senate adjourned early Friday morning.
Andy Metzger / State House News Service

The Senate passed legislation early Friday that could make drug traffickers in Massachusetts liable for murder while substantially reducing other criminal penalties for drug dealing in an effort to reduce the state's prison population and give offenders a better chance at turning around their lives.

Amid the Trump administration's efforts to arrest people living in the country illegally, the Department of Homeland Security is looking at locations for five new detention centers around the country that could hold thousands of detainees.

The Connecticut Capitol in Hartford.
Photo Phiend flickr.com/photos/photophiend / Creative Commons

A compromise budget passed Thursday in the Connecticut House of Representatives, 126-23. Earlier, the $41.3 billion budget overwhelmingly passed the state Senate, 33-3.

Hampden County Jail in Ludlow, Mass.
File photo / MassLive

The Massachusetts Senate on Thursday begins debate on criminal justice legislation designed to reduce the number of people incarcerated. But there's uncertainty over what it means for the state budget.

According to the Gun Violence Archive, nearly 900 people have been shot and killed in the U.S. since the mass shooting October 1 in Las Vegas. U.S. Senator Chris Murphy along with Senator Richard Blumenthal and others introduced legislation on Wednesday that would expand federal background checks.

State Sen. William Brownsberger, at right, has proposed a criminal justice bill that he says is about "lifting people up."
Sam Doran / State House News Service

The Massachusetts Senate begins debate Thursday on a wide-ranging criminal justice bill

Judge Thomas Estes, seen here March 21, 2016, at an arraignment in Eastern Hampshire District Court in Belchertown, Mass.
Don Treeger / The Republican

Two investigations are underway involving a Massachusetts court judge accused of sexual harassment. 

It was the Friday before a Monday deadline, and federal health officials in Washington, D.C., were working feverishly with their counterparts in Oklahoma to finalize the details of a new state reinsurance program.

Tahirah Amatul-Wadud
Joyce Skowyra / NEPR

In her day job, Chicopee, Massachusetts, attorney Tahirah Amatul-Wadud does family law -- divorce, custody, child support. But on her own time, she's filed civil rights lawsuits on behalf of Muslim communities who feel threatened, especially African-American Muslims like herself.

It’s not clear if Massachusetts health insurers will receive more than $10 million that’s due next week — their monthly federal reimbursement for subsidies that help make insurance affordable for tens of thousands of residents in the state.

The White House said Thursday night that the payments are unlawful and must end.

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