By Erin Farley 1-29-14
Governor Deval Patrick delivered his final State of the Commonwealth address Tuesday night in the House Gallery at the State House.
The second term Governor focused on the past and the present. Patrick pledged to continue to work on making it easier to register to vote, the unemployment insurance system, and education.
Patrick received a standing ovation after calling for an increase in the state’s minimum wage. He asked the state lawmakers and members of the administration to ask themselves if they could live on minimum wage.
As expected, Patrick also spoke about strengthening the Department of Children and Families. This department came under fire after a 5-year-old boy went missing while under state-care.
Patrick reflected on all he has accomplished since taking office in 2007 such as bringing Massachusetts to the top of the list in student achievement, health care coverage, economic competitiveness, and entrepreneurial activity. But the Governor noted even with those achievements there is still work to be done.
“We lead the country in student achievement but some of our students remain stuck in achievement gaps. We’re using better tools to combat youth violence but still lose too many people to a cycle of violence. We are the only state to guarantee emergency shelter but too many people need it,” he said.
Patrick, who is not seeking re-election, finished his final address saying this is not a time to celebrate any victories, there is still work to do and it is time to get to it.