Fiscal 2010 Local Aid Numbers — Preview

Governor Patrick just delivered a pre-release to legislators of his 2010
local aid numbers.

Here are the highlights:

The Governor’s budget for 2010 keeps Chapter 70 level.  This makes a
positive statement about education, but, in Arlington, Belmont or Cambridge
it does not prevent transfers of budget losses between the school and town
budgets .   These communities are already spending considerably more than
the state requires them to on schools.  These communities can transfer funds
between the school and town budget by appropriate municipal action without
state restriction.

The budget combines the three historic categories of general munipal aid:
Lottery, Lottery Supplement and Additional Assistance under the new heading
“Unrestricted Municipal Aid”.  The total local reductions are as follow
(with percents including the three old categories plus Chapter 70 in the
denominator):

Arlington, $2,695,615, 17.2%
Belmont, $802,265, 10.8%
Cambridge, $7,633,144, 21.2%
The Governor proposes to mitigate these measures with meals and rooming tax
increases.

Net of these increases, the impacts would be:

Arlington, $1,567,147, 10%
Belmont, $482,968, 6.5%
Cambridge, $3,605,401, 10%

That’s the bottom line from House 1.  There is a lot of budget process to go
yet.  We are just getting started.  Depending on the economy, things could
get a little better or they could get worse.

Published by Will Brownsberger

Will Brownsberger is State Senator from the Second Suffolk and Middlesex District.