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HomeUSA NewsMassachusetts lawmakers approve greater than $52B price range plan

Massachusetts lawmakers approve greater than $52B price range plan

By STEVE LeBLANC Related Press 

BOSTON (AP) – Massachusetts lawmakers authorized a $52.7 billion state price range Monday, greater than two weeks into the state’s new fiscal 12 months. 

The unanimous votes in each chambers got here after a six-member Home and Senate convention committee completed hammering out the small print of the ultimate compromise price range plan over the weekend. The settlement was crafted after every chamber authorized their very own variations of the spending plan earlier within the 12 months. 

The price range negotiators elevated by greater than $2.6 billion their unique estimate for obtainable tax revenues for the 2023 fiscal 12 months, primarily based partially on a hefty price range surplus for the present fiscal 12 months. 

The price range – which now heads to Republican Gov. Charlie Baker for his signature – doesn’t embody any new broad-based taxes.
The state has been working on an interim price range because the new fiscal 12 months started on July 1 to keep away from any disruption in authorities providers whereas the ultimate particulars of the brand new price range had been labored out. 

The price range plan authorized by lawmakers Monday consists of $1.2 billion in unrestricted support to cities and cities, practically $6 billion for native faculty support and greater than $110 million to extend entry to high school meals. 

The plan additionally units apart $266 million to assist the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority handle security issues spotlighted in a current evaluate of the transit company by the Federal Transit Administration. 

As well as, the price range creates a two-year pilot program geared toward offering people and households who earn as much as 500 p.c of the federal poverty stage – about $68,000 a 12 months for a person and $139,000 for a household of 4 – entry to backed well being care protection with diminished premiums, co-pays and deductibles. 

The laws additionally consists of a number of nonbudget associated sections, together with one eliminating charges for parole and probation and a second banning marriage of individuals beneath age 18 in Massachusetts. Advocates stated Massachusetts would turn out to be the seventh state to ban marriage for these beneath 18. 

The brighter fiscal outlook for the state additionally allowed price range negotiators to plan to funnel extra money into the state’s wet day fund – which might prime greater than $7.3 billion by the top of the 2023 fiscal 12 months. The fund is used to assist the state bridge price range spending gaps within the occasion of a sudden financial downturn. 

The price range now goes to Baker, who deliberate to attend a gathering of the Republican Governors’ Affiliation in Colorado through the first a part of the week and return to Massachusetts on Wednesday night. 

Baker has 10 days to evaluate the price range, signal it and situation any vetoes. The Home and Senate, managed by Democrats, can search to override particular person vetoes, though they might seemingly should take the votes rapidly earlier than the top of the formal session on July 31. 

Lawmakers are additionally hoping to ship a separate $1 billion tax aid proposal to Baker’s desk by the top of the month. 



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