MA Probation Controversy Adds To Anti-Incumbent Fervor


The controversy over the Massachusetts Probation Department is reverberating in political races as candidates for the legislature and other offices seize on reports of the agency's record of patronage as yet another reason to sweep incumbents out of office, the Boston Globe reports. The Globe reported that the Probation Department became a haven for politically connected hiring and lax spending controls in the nine years since the Legislature took control of the agency away from the courts and handed it to the probation commissioner, John O'Brien.

Democrat Charles Rudnick, who is challenging Democratic state Senator Cynthia Stone Creem of Newton, accused Creem of a “lack of any action or leadership.'' After the Globe’s series appeared, Creem, chair of the Judiciary Committee, unveiled changes, which passed the Senate, to give the judiciary more power over the agency's hiring and spending.

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