We provide this press release from the Senate Ways and Means Committee.
Senate Passes Supplemental Budget to Fund Time Sensitive Deficiencies for FY 2014
(Boston) – The Senate on Thursday voted 37-0 to pass a $200.8 million supplemental budget to cover time sensitive deficiencies and unexpected cost increases in FY 2014. This supplemental budget includes funds to address critical needs in the state’s emergency shelter programs, as well as provide additional funds for snow and ice removal.
“This supplemental budget is an important bill-paying exercise which addresses several spending deficiencies and time sensitive policy issues,” said Senator Stephen M. Brewer (D-Barre), Chairman of the Senate Committee on Ways and Means. “I am very pleased that the Senate has passed a bill that makes necessary, mid-year investments while maintaining our disciplined fiscal approach that has served us so well in recent years.”
“The supplemental budget provides much-needed funds to critical services and programs across the Commonwealth, such as our snow and ice removal and heating assistance programs,” Senate President Therese Murray (D-Plymouth) said. “In addition, it will allow the Department of Transportation to pay snow and ice removal bills on time for the next two fiscal years. These are important investments that will contribute to the economic health of our communities as well as the personal well-being of our residents.”
The supplemental budget includes a $45.3 million investment to cover shelter contracts for emergency assistance and to pay for the cost of keeping families in motels. This is a critical investment to ensure housing and homelessness prevention resources are available for children and families across the Commonwealth.
This supplemental budget also includes $30 million to cover a portion of over-budget snow and ice costs that the Commonwealth will incur over the course of this winter. This bill also enables MassDOT to pay future snow and ice bills in anticipation of supplemental funding, allowing payments to plow drivers to get out the door faster.
The bill also includes $28.6 million to cover ongoing deficiencies for eleven county sheriffs, and $8 million to cover indigent court costs.
Additional provisions in the supplemental budget include:
- $17.4 million to fund the costs associated with new collective bargaining agreements;
- $16 million to cover the premium costs associated with three communities joining the GIC, which will then be reimbursed by the municipalities;
- $15 million to recapitalize the Brownfields Redevelopment fund;
- $10.7 million to annualize the FY 2013 human service salary reserve in FY 2014;
- $7.9 million to support the Department of Youth Services’ implementation of the Raise the Age legislation;
- $4.8 million to fund the Safe and Successful Youth Program; and,
- $2.8 million to support increased capacity at the Department of Children and Families.
The Senate also adopted amendments related to elevator inspections, required net school spending for public school districts, and Youth At-Risk Summer Jobs.
Earlier in the week the House of Representatives passed a similar bill. The two branches will now work out the differences between the two, before bringing the bill before the Governor for his final approbation.