President Obama, fresh off an extended vacation in Massachusetts, plans to return to New England on Friday. Obama plans to visit Newport, Rhode Island on the eve of Labor Day weekend to participate in a Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee event, according to the White House. - M. Norton/SHNS


Already under scrutiny from Republican Charlie for supporting costly ventures such as universal pre-kindergarten, Democratic gubernatorial candidate Martha Coakley on Wednesday rolled out a plan to spend $500 million over 10 years on regional economic development programs. The Regional Investment for a Sustainable Economy initiative, dubbed RISE, would be modeled after Gov. Deval Patrick's $1 billion life science initiative started early in his first term to support the now booming industry. Coakley's campaign said the funding would support targeted investments around the state for infrastructure improvements and a competitive program for local officials, businesses and non-profits to support the unique strategies to grow the economy tailored to individual regions. "Too many of our regions are still struggling to recover. It is the responsibility of the next governor to make sure that all of our residents have the opportunities to succeed, no matter where they live," Coakley said in a statement.


The total proposed spending would include $400 million for capital improvements and $100 million for grants to businesses and non-profits. Coakley said she would pay for the initiative by "streamlining existing revenue streams" and finding new sources of revenue "where necessary." The competitive grants would promote collaboration between high schools, colleges, workforce development agencies and business to train workers with the skills they will need to find jobs in the changing economy, according to the plan. Successful applications would also be required to have quantifiable job creation, workers trained or revenue goals. - M. Murphy/SHNS


Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan picked up a rare and coveted endorsement on Wednesday when Gov. Deval Patrick threw his support behind the woman he appointed to the district attorney position in 2013. Patrick rarely inserts himself into Democratic primaries, but he has made exceptions for those public officials running for re-election to offices that he appointed them to when a vacancy was created. "Of all the applicants I considered for appointment as Middlesex District Attorney, Marian Ryan was the strongest choice," Patrick said in a statement released by Ryan's campaign. "Her experience in the courtroom, her management skills as part of the Middlesex leadership team, and her commitment to working with the community clearly set her apart. I am proud to endorse her for election." Patrick appointed Ryan district attorney in April 2013 after Gerry Leone resigned to enter the private sector. Patrick has also endorsed Suffolk County Sheriff Steven Tompkins and Middlesex County Sheriff Peter Koutoujian during their re-election bids after he appointed them to fill vacancies in each position. Ryan, who has been criticized for her management style as well as the office's handling of Jared Remy prior to his murder of girlfriend Jennifer Martel, is running against Middlesex County clerk of courts Michael Sullivan in the Sept. 9 Democratic primary for a full four-year term as top prosecutor in the state's most populous county. - M. Murphy/SHNS


Maura Healey and Warren Tolman, the two Democrats running to succeed outgoing Attorney General Martha Coakley, are set to face off again next week. The Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce on Wednesday announced plans to host Healey and Tolman for an 8 a.m. forum on Sept. 3 at the Fairmont Copley Plaza Hotel. The attorney general's office wields significant powers in the business regulation arena and the candidates are likely to be face questions about their approaches in that area. - M. Norton/SHNS