Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Gaining Steam: The Campaign to Ban Non-Competes in Massachusetts

A bill was introduced on Beacon Hill this week to make non-competes illegal and unenforceable in Massachusetts.

Richard Tibbetts of StreamBase offers some advice about how you can get your Massachusetts representative and state senator behind the bill.

Will Brownsberger is the state rep from Belmont/Cambridge who introduced the bill.

Here's the key legalese:

    Any written or oral contract or agreement arising out of an employment relationship that prohibits, impairs, restrains, restricts, or places any condition on, a person’s ability to seek, engage in or accept any type of employment or independent contractor work, for any period of time after an employment relationship has ended, shall be void and unenforceable with respect to that restriction.

Just today, Play Hard Sports CEO Jeffrey Anderson was telling me how non-competes make it really challenging to get the best people aboard a new company... not a problem they have out in California.

Worth reading is Angelo Santelli's blog post on the bill:

    One argument that has been made in favor of non-competes is to prevent a cadre of engineers from leaving a company en masse to start another potentially competing company. I actually witnessed this first hand while at Shiva and I still don’t like non-competes. It was a mistake to lose these great engineers in the first place. The second mistake was not investing in their business and getting a seat at the table in the event that they were successful, which they eventually were.

    I commend Rep. Brownsberger for filing this bill and hope it passes. All in favor say, “Aye”.

...To which I offer a hearty "Aye."

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Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Gov. Patrick: Let's Crack the Energy Crisis

Gov. Deval Patrick writes about the state's new energy law in today's Globe:

    Our vision capitalizes on the Commonwealth's natural advantages in technology and entrepreneurship to combat rising energy costs and satisfy the need for new, clean, affordable ways to meet energy needs - creating a whole new industry along the way.

Later, he mentions a few companies by name:

    ...A123 Systems in Watertown, which is developing batteries for plug-in hybrid cars to enable them to get up to 150 miles per gallon; Evergreen Solar, which is set to open a new solar-panel manufacturing facility in Devens, encouraged in part by the state's new rebate program for solar electricity installations, Commonwealth Solar; Mascoma in Cambridge and Sun Ethanol in Amherst, two leaders in cellulosic biofuel, the non-petroleum, non-food-based fuel of the future, which will get a boost from a gas-tax exemption now pending in the Legislature, the first of its kind in the country; and GreatPoint Energy, a Cambridge firm now demonstrating its innovative technology for turning coal and biomass into clean-burning natural gas at the Brayton Point power plant in Somerset.

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