SENATE AND GOV SIGN LAW $15 MILLION FOR PUERTO RICO STUDENTS

By Bob Katzen

House and Senate approved and Gov. Charlie Baker signed into law a fiscal 2018 supplemental budget.

Provisions include $15 million to help school districts educate students who came to the Bay State from Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands following Hurricanes Maria and Irma. Another $420,000 is for the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination (MCAD) to hire additional employees and to conduct training on sexual assault and harassment to address the recent rise in these complaints.

Supporters said the $15 million will help reimburse cities and towns for the additional costs of absorbing an estimated 2,400 new students who fled here with their families following the hurricanes. They argue that the additional funding for the is needed in order to do its job properly.

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