By Bob Katzen
Governor Baker signed into law a supplemental budget designed to close out the books on the fiscal year that ended on July 30. The funds are from the state’s surplus leftover as a result of higher than expected tax revenue.
The package puts $240 million in the state’s Rainy Day Fund, boosting its total to more than $2 billion. Other provisions include $7.5 million in grants to invest in security-related infrastructure upgrades at public schools; $40 million for road and bridge repairs; $1.5 million to administer the state’s new paid family and medical leave law; $7.5 million for increased access to mental and behavioral health in public schools; $10 million for a neighborhood and community-based gun and violent crime prevention program targeting youths aged 17 to 24.
“This bill will invest additional resources to address the mental health needs of students and make important upgrades to school infrastructure,” said Gov. Baker. “Since taking office, we have worked with the Legislature to protect and rebuild the state’s reserves, and I am pleased that this supplemental budget will also result in us nearly doubling the Rainy Day Fund over the past four years.”
“This bill will provide additional support to our partners in the commonwealth’s cities and towns to address their security, education and infrastructure needs,” said Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito. “We are thankful to the Legislature for passing a supplemental budget that invests the surplus funds from Fiscal Year 2018 in a responsible and meaningful way.”