Charles Baker Robert DeLeo360 William Weld.jpg Stanley Rosenberg

General Session
From Politics to Statesmanship: Solving Problems in a Partisan World

Solving complex problems is always difficult, and the job is harder when the participants are from different parties. Hear from Massachusetts’ two legislative leaders—both Democrats—and the Commonwealth’s Republican governor on how they roll up their sleeves and reach consensus to move their state forward.
1-2 p.m. | Ballroom

Presiding: Senator Dan Blue, North Carolina
Moderator: William Weld, former Governor, Massachusetts
Panelist: Governor Charles Baker, Massachusetts
Panelist: Speaker Robert A. DeLeo, Massachusetts
Panelist: Senate President Stanley Rosenberg, Massachusetts

Featured Sessions

  • Legislator Compensation Decisions: Do Commissions Help?
    2:15-3:45 p.m. | 253 B

  • Immigration in 2017
    2:15-3:45 p.m. | 156 BC

  • Budget Challenges in Medicaid
    3:15-4:15 p.m. | 151 AB

  • Financial Services for Marijuana
    4-5:30 p.m. | 152

Sunday's Streaming Sessions

  • Captioning Legislative Webcasts
    2:15-4 p.m. | 206 AB

  • Expecting the Unexpected
    4:15-5:30 p.m. | 206 AB

All times are Eastern.

Social Event | The Lawn on D

Come join the party at The Lawn on D! After your last session, head to the convention center's outdoor space for a night of Boston fun. Our opening night extravaganza gives you the chance to interact with our life size BOSTON-OPLY game board, entertainers and chance wall. Network with your peers over festive appetizers and cocktails. This is a one-of-a-kind event you won’t want to miss! You must have your badge to enter.
5:30-7:30 p.m. | Lawn on D

Business Meeting Business Meeting Business Meeting

NCSL Business Meeting

All legislators and legislative staff are encouraged to attend the Business Meeting and consider policy directives and resolutions that will guide NCSL's advocacy efforts before Congress and the administration; amendments to the bylaws and rules of procedure; election of NCSL officers; and approval of the Conference budget. All other meeting participants are welcome to observe.
3:15-5 p.m. | 210 ABC

Featured Sessions

  • What Would It Take to Balance the Federal Budget
    8:45-10 a.m. | 156 A

  • Legislative Staff University: Making Work Worthwhile
    10-11:45 a.m. | 205 ABC

  • Effective Legislatures: How Does Your State Stack Up?
    1:30-3 p.m.| 253 B

  • Excellence in Education: Lessons From Massachusetts
    1:30-3 p.m. | 206 AB

Monday's Streaming Sessions

  • Legislator Pride: Reclaiming the Image of Public Servants
    10:15-11:45 a.m. | 206 AB

  • Excellence in Education: Lessons from MA
    1:30-3 p.m. | 206 AB

  • Policies for Legislative Technologies
    3:45 -5 p.m. | 206 AB

All times are Eastern.

Social Event | A Night at the Garden

You’re invited to experience the magic of Boston sports first hand during this unique event at TD Garden. Step onto the legendary parquet floor of the Boston Celtics and shoot a few baskets like some of Boston’s most famous players. Then head upstairs for a reception in the Sports Museum and enjoy a walk through Boston’s sports history. You must have your badge to enter. Note: Transportation is not provided for this event. 5-8 p.m. | TD Garden

Franz Luntz

General Session
Voters’ Opinions: Where Do We Stand?

From budgets to taxes, education to health care, Americans are demanding action from their legislators. But what issues matter most? What do voters truly want to hear? Frank Luntz, one of the nation’s foremost political commentators and pollsters, will offer his perspective.
9-10 a.m. | Ballroom

Deep Dive Sessions

  • Disruptive Innovation in Higher Education
    10:15 a.m.-12:30 p.m. | 153 ABC

  • Police Community Relations
    10:15 a.m.-12:30 p.m. | 102 AB

  • Fixing Health Care: What’s Next?
    10:15 a.m.-12:30 p.m. | 157 ABC

  • Communicate to Succeed
    10:15 a.m.-12:30 p.m. | 206 AB

  • Beyond the Horizon: U.S. Economic Outlook
    10:15 a.m.-12:30 p.m. | 204 AB

  • The Changing Nature of Jobs: Is Our Workforce Prepared?
     10:15 a.m.-12:30 p.m. | 104

Tuesday's Streaming Sessions

  • Deep Dive: Communicate to Succeed
    10:15-12:30 | 206 AB

  • Critical Thinking: An Objective Analysis for Today’s World
    2:15-3:30 p.m. | 206 AB

All times are Eastern.

Social Event | Fenway Park

What’s a trip to Boston without visiting Major League Baseball’s oldest and most beloved ballpark? Fenway Park is opening its doors for a night of behind-the-scenes fun. Take a tour of the ballpark, go for a walk along the field, and get up close and personal with the Green Monster, all while snacking on delicious ballpark cuisine. A night at Fenway Park is a night you won’t soon forget! You must have your badge to enter.
6:30-9:30 p.m. | Fenway Park

Doris Kearns Goodwin

General Session
2018 Kickoff Luncheon – Where Do We Go from Here: Leadership in Challenging Times?

Presidential historian Doris Kearns Goodwin will reflect on more than 150 years of U.S. history to put into context our most recent unconventional presidency. Goodwin will bring to life some of our most successful presidents to provide insight for today’s leaders, and to demonstrate that however fractured our modern political culture has become, our democracy is also resilient and has survived—even thrived—through troubling times in the past.
12:30-2:15 p.m. | Ballroom

Featured Sessions

  • Republican Breakfast | Ambassador John Bolton
    8-9:15 a.m. | 253 BC

  • Democratic Breakfast | Speaker TBD
    8-9:15 a.m. | 258 AB

  • State Strategies to Address Opioid Misuse
    9:30-10:45 a.m. | 157 ABC

  • The Legal Landscape of Autonomous Vehicles
    11 a.m.-12:15 p.m. | 104

Wednesday's Streaming Sessions

  • What Happened to the American Dream?
    9:30-10:45 a.m. | 206 AB

  • Cannabis Crosses the Country
    11 a.m.-12:15 p.m. | 206 AB

All times are Eastern.


  • Redistricting Goes to Court


    “Redistricting is a game of margins,” attorney Kate McKnight told lawmakers at the Legislative Summit in Boston. Legislatures always start with existing district maps and work from there, she said. No one starts completely from scratch.


  • Regulating Drones: Who and How?


    As a retired major general and former fighter wing commander, Marke "Hoot" Gibson is not much given to hyperbole. So here's what he said during an NCSL Legislative Summit session on regulating drones: "This is the most fundamental change in aviation in our lifetime."


  • Angry Voters Want Leaders Who Solve Problems

    Pollster and political analyst Frank Luntz brought his combative, often in-your-face style to NCSL’s Legislative Summit on Tuesday in a session on what voters want to hear from their elected officials.

  • Money and Marijuana: An Uneasy Alliance for Bankers

    The legal marijuana business has exploded into a multibillion-dollar industry in the past several years and will grow even more once California and others states implement recreational sales. Banking and insurance services, however, remain difficult for the industry to access because of conflict between state and federal laws. And with the vast majority of states allowing some level of access to marijuana products, the situation is reaching a tipping point.