FUNDING FOR AVON, CANTON, AND STOUGHTON
Representative Galvin recently helped to secure funding for the following projects:
$2.5 Million for the Metropolis Rink Project in Canton
$30+ Million for the Dedham Street Project
$1+ million for the reconstruction of Harrison Boulevard in Avon
$250,000 for the redevelopment of Stoughton Center
$5 Million to redesign canton Junction Station
$300 Million to redesign the I-95/I-93 interchange in Canton
$500 for heaters at the MBTA stations to Canton and Stoughton
$1.6 Million for road improvements in Avon
$15 Million to improve 139 in Stoughton
$125,000 to rehab the Stoughton Train Depot
$250,000+ to rehab the Stoughton Theatre
$2 million to repair the Reservoir Dam and the Shepard Pond Dam in Canton
$5 million to clean up the Canton Airport to build the Farnham-Connolly Park
Helped secure funding for the construction of the new Stoughton library and Stoughton High School
$100,000 for the preservation of the Tilden House
$100,000 economic development grant for the Town of Avon
During the annual state budget debate, Representative Galvin works to ensure programs that benefit the residents of Avon, Canton, and Stoughton are funded. Priority items for Representative Galvin include:
Early Education and Early Intervention Programs for children
Youth Programs (Horizons for Homeless Children Play Spaces, YMCA programing, youth jobs)
Programs that help the elderly (Council on Aging, Meals on Wheels)
Programs that assist families caring for a developmentally disabled child
Housing vouchers and programs that aid low-income families
Environmental items (Department of Environmental Protection, Department of Conservation and Recreation)
SPED Circuit Breaker
Funding for food banks
Healthy Incentives Program (HIP)
Heating assistance for low-income residents
LEGISLATURE APPROVES FY22 BUDGET
July 9, 2021
BOSTON – The Massachusetts State Legislature unanimously passed a $48.07 billion budget for Fiscal Year 2022 (FY22). This budget increases funding for education, local aid, economic development, and environmental protection initiatives, while also depositing funds into the state’s ‘rainy day’ account.
“The last year and half has been a real challenge, and I am pleased that we were able to produce a budget that will help in the recovery effort and positions the state for stability in the future,” said Representative Bill Galvin (D-Canton). “Despite the uncertainty created by the pandemic, this budget fully funds vital programs, while also increasing funds and creating new programs in the areas of education, job training, environmental protection, and assistance for low-income residents. It is vital that the state provides a variety of assistance programs that are accessible and effective to allow families to rebound from the effects of the pandemic.”
Representative Galvin filed the following successful amendments:
$150,000 for the Pappas Rehabilitation Hospital’s summer program in Canton
$50,000 for the Norfolk County Regional Fire and Rescue Dispatch Center
$50,000 for the Blue Hills Weather Observatory
$25,000 for the restoration of the Tilden House
$50,000 for repairs of the Redman House (located on Ponky Golf Course and owned by the state, but home to the Neponset River Watershed Association).
Representative Galvin supported numerous local amendments including:
$250,000 for the Trailside Museum
$40,000 for renovating the Stoughton Train Depot
$30,000 for hockey boards in Stoughton
$20,000 for OASIS in Stoughton
$20,000 for the Canton Alliance Against Substance Abuse
$20,000 for the Avon Coalition for Every Student
$36,000 for the Canton Fire Department to conduct trainings
Avon schools will receive $2.4 million and the Town of Avon will receive $761,741
Canton schools will receive $6.6 million and the Town of Canton will receive $2.3 million
Stoughton schools will receive $17.2 million and the Town of Stoughton will receive $3.5 million
The FY22 budget prioritizes funding for education by depositing $350 million into the new Student Opportunity Act Investment fund to be utilized in the coming years for the implementation of the state’s landmark Student Opportunity Act (SOA). The SOA increased the state’s level of investment to guarantee that school districts across the Commonwealth have adequate and equitable resources to provide high quality educational opportunities for all students. The FY22 budget also includes a $40 million reserve to provide additional aid to districts experiencing increases in student enrollment compared to October 2020.
To help families get back to work, the FY22 conference report includes $820 million for the early education sector, including $20 million to increase rates for early education providers, $15 million for Massachusetts Head Start programs, $10 million for the Commonwealth Preschool Partnership Initiative to expand public preschool, and $9 million to cover the cost of fees for parents receiving subsidized early education in calendar year 2021. The budget funds early intervention services at $40.8 million to ensure supports are accessible and available to infants and young toddlers with developmental delays and disabilities, including funds to support health equity initiatives.
A number of “Green Budget” priorities were incorporated, including record funding levels for the state’s Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Program, funding for the Department of Ecological Restoration to address flooding concerns, and $13 million for a workforce development program for wind. The budget also boosted spending for the Department of Conservation and Recreation’s funding for state parks to $50 million.
This budget aims to address the increasing costs of caregiving by converting the existing tax deductions for young children, elderly or disabled dependents and business-related dependent care expenses into refundable tax credits. These tax credits will benefit low-income families who have little or no personal income tax liability and cannot claim the full value of the existing deductions. The conversion to a refundable tax credit will provide an additional $16 million to over 85,000 families each year. The budget also includes $30.5 million for Emergency Food Assistance, $7.5 million for grants to Community Foundations to support communities disproportionately impacted by the pandemic, and $5 million for the Secure Jobs Connect program, providing job placement resources and assistance for homeless individuals.
The FY22 budget builds on the success of last year’s efforts to tackle ‘deep poverty’ with a 20 per cent increase to Transitional Aid to Families with Dependent Children (TAFDC) and Emergency Aid to the Elderly, Disabled and Children (EAEDC) benefits over December 2020 levels, ensuring families receive the economic supports they need to live, work and provide stability for their children. The budget also provides resources to help with housing instability, including $150 million for the Massachusetts Rental Voucher Program to expand access to affordable housing, $85 million for grants to local housing authorities, $22M for the Residential Assistance for Families in Transition Program and $8 million for Housing Consumer Education Centers to help administer nearly $1 billion in federal housing relief.
The budget makes the state’s film tax credit permanent and requires an increase in the percentage of production expenses or principal photography days in the Commonwealth from 50 per cent to 75 per cent. The film tax credit was set to expire in January 2023. The budget also includes a disability employment tax credit for employers that hire employees with a disability.
The FY22 budget repeals three ineffective tax expenditures as recommended by the Tax Expenditure Review Commission (TERC), namely the exemption of income from the sale of certain patents, the medical device tax credit, and the harbor maintenance tax credit, effective January 1, 2022. The TERC found that these tax expenditures are either obsolete, fail to provide a meaningful incentive, or fail to justify their cost to the Commonwealth. The TERC was created as part of a Senate budget initiative in Fiscal Year 2019.
Understanding that the pandemic has been a stressor on mental and behavioral health, the FY22 budget invests $175.6 million for substance use disorder and intervention services provided by the Bureau of Substance Addiction Services. It also invests $12.5 million to support a student telebehavioral health pilot, public awareness campaigns, loan forgiveness for mental health clinicians, and initiatives to mitigate emergency department boardings for individuals in need of behavioral health support, as well as $10 million for Programs of Assertive Community Treatment (PACT) grants to provide intensive, community-based behavioral health services for adolescents.
The budget includes $56.1 million for domestic violence prevention services, $6 million for Social Emotional Learning Grants to K- 12 schools to bolster social emotional learning supports for students, and $15 million to support local and regional boards of health as they continue to work on the front lines against the ongoing impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Investments in economic and workforce development include a $17 million transfer to the Workforce Competitiveness Trust fund, $15.4 million for Career Technical Institutes, and $9.5 million for one-stop career centers to support economic recovery. $15 million will go to the Community Empowerment and Reinvestment Grant Program, $6 million for Regional Economic Development Organizations to support economic growth in all regions of the state, and $2.5 million for the Massachusetts Cybersecurity Innovation Fund, including $1.5 million for new regional security operation centers, which will partner with community colleges and state universities to provide cybersecurity workforce training to students and cybersecurity services to municipalities, non-profits, and small businesses
To protect residents of the Commonwealth, the FY22 budget codifies and expands the existing Governor’s task force on hate crimes to advise on issues relating to hate crimes, ways to prevent hate crimes and how best to support victims of hate crimes. The conference report makes the task force permanent and expands its membership to include members of the Legislature and an appointee from the Attorney General. The conference report also contains a provision that supports immigrants who are victims of criminal activity or human trafficking.
Having been passed by the House and Senate, the legislation now goes to Governor Baker for his signature.
HOUSE PASSES BALANCED BUDGET WITH TARGETED INVESTMENTS
IN HOUSING, ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT, AND FOOD SECURITY
November 20, 2020
BOSTON – State Representative Bill Galvin (D-Canton), joined his colleagues in the Massachusetts House of Representatives to approve a Fiscal Year 2021 (FY21) budget, which invests in programs and services across the Commonwealth. Funded at $46 billion, the House budget aims to address the sweeping effects of the global pandemic by making targeted investments in housing, food security, economic development, substance use addiction services, and establishes a grant program to assist victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. The budget also invests in programs that provide COVID-related supports for students and increases funding for developmental services.
Through the amendment process, Representative Galvin was able to secure additional funding for local organizations. The Pappas Rehabilitation Hospital for Children, which is based in Canton and educates children with physical disabilities, would receive $75,000 for the school’s summer program from a Galvin amendment. Representative Galvin’s second successful amendment would provide $50,000 for the operation of the Norfolk County Regional Fire and Rescue Dispatch Center. The Representative’s final amendment would provide $50,000 for the operation of the Blue Hill Weather Observatory, which is the oldest weather observatory in the country.
“This was a particularly difficult budget, but it is a balanced budget that provides the maximum funding possible to crucial programs that residents rely on, including programs that provide assistance to residents who are facing housing and food insecurity. Despite a funding shortfall, this budget does not include drastic cuts, while maintaining local aid to communities and increasing funding for our schools,” said Representative Galvin.
The budget provides $1.1 billion for local aid for municipalities and invests $5.3 billion in public schools through Chapter 70. The Town of Canton will receive $2.2 in local aid funding and Canton schools will receive $6.5 million, which is a slight increase over last year. In addition to the $5.3 billion in Chapter 70 funding, the House budget provides $53 million for COVID-related student supports, $340 million for the Circuit Breaker Special Education reimbursement, $117 million for Charter School Reimbursement, and $82 million for Regional School Transportation reimbursement.
The House budget also funds Early Education and Care (EEC) and Higher Education. The budget invests in those who work with children by increasing rates for early education providers by $20 million and supports continuing education opportunities with community colleges. The House budget also includes $15 million for Head Start grants, $10 million for sliding fee scale reserve for childcare subsidies, $10 million for EEC Workforce Higher Education Opportunities, $2.5 million in early childhood mental health grants, $11 million for child care resource and referral agencies, and establishes the Early Education and care Economic review commission to review childcare funding and make recommendations on policy changes to expand access.
The budget supports public higher education institutions and increases scholarship funding for students. These investments include $284 million for state universities, $305 million for community colleges, $560 million for the University of Massachusetts system, $120 million in scholarship funding, and $4.8 million for the STEM Starter Academy, to support underrepresented students in STEM fields at community colleges.
In an effort to assist residents who may be struggling with housing insecurity during the pandemic, the House is providing additional funding for rental and housing assistance to combat the eviction crisis. This includes $50 million for the Residential Assistance for Families in Transition Program (RAFT), $135 million for the Massachusetts Rental Voucher Program (MRVP), $80 million for public housing subsidies, $56 million for homeless individual shelters, $13 million for homeless student transportation, $11 million for Department of Mental Health Rental Subsidy Program, and $8 million for unaccompanied homeless youth.
Due to the widespread economic effects of the COVID crisis, the House makes specific investments in labor and economic development programs that provide opportunities for the Commonwealth’s workers and locally-owned businesses. The House maintains its support for the Massachusetts Manufacturing Partnership with an investment of $2 million, which will continue to help Massachusetts manufactures retrofit their businesses for the PPE market. Other investments include $15 million for a local Paycheck Protection Program, $6 million for small business technical assistance grants, $1.4 million for small business development, $2.5 million in Urban Agenda Grants, and $19 million for summer jobs for at-risk youth.
Funded this fiscal year $19 billion, MassHealth is the largest investment the Commonwealth makes in its most vulnerable residents. The budget also invests in critical health and human services agencies and providers including $30 million in emergency food assistance and $13 million for the Healthy Incentives Program, which helps low-income families and local farmers by providing funds for families to purchase locally produced food at farmers markets and stands. An additional $307 million will be provided to the Department of Children and Families for social workers, family support and stabilization, and foster care and adopted fee waivers.
In order to support programs for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, the House budget increases funding for developmental services to $2.1 billion and includes $264 million for community day and work programs across the Commonwealth. The House budget also includes $236 million for state-operated residential services, $78 million for family respite services, and $39 million for autism omnibus services.
The budget furthers the House’s ongoing commitment to fight the opioid epidemic. To provide assistance to those who are battling substance addiction, the budget increased funding for the Bureau of Substance Addiction Services to $162 million while offering continued support for step-down recovery services, jail diversion programs, and expansion of access to life-saving medication.
The House budget includes funding for the judiciary and ongoing criminal justice reform, including a $761 million investment in the trial court and $20 million for criminal justice reform implementation. The budget also includes $29 million for civil legal aid to provide representation for low-income individuals via the Massachusetts Legal Assistance Corporation, $9.6 million for a new community-based re-entry program, and $4 million for a pre and post-release services grant program.
The House calls for $302 million in spending for environmental programs, which aim protect the Commonwealth’s natural resources. These investments include $50 million for state parks and recreation, $40 million for the Department of Environmental Protection, $16 million for fisheries and wildlife protection, $8.1 million for agricultural resources, $2.1 million for ecological restoration, and $500,000 for the Commonwealth’s endangered specials program.
HOUSE PASSES BALANCED 2020 BUDGET WITH FOCUS ON LOCAL AID, EDUCATION, HOUSING, AND THE ENVIRONMENT
May 3, 2019
BOSTON – The Massachusetts House of Representatives passed their version of the FY20 budget, which makes targeted investments across the Commonwealth in education, housing, environmental protection, substance use disorder services, and local aid.
The budget also deposits $200 million into the State’s Stabilization Fund. The fund, also called the “rainy day fund”, will total $2.5 billion to safeguard the state if there is a future economic downturn.
The FY20 Budget provides an unprecedented $5.1 billion in Chapter 70 local education funding, which is a billion dollar increase since 2011. Additional statewide educational investments include $238 million for Circuit Breaker Special Education and $73.8 million for Regional School Transportation. The budget also invests in early education by adding additional funding for Head Start grants and increasing rates for early education providers by $20 million.
“This is a sound budget that increases aid for municipalities and education, funds critical state programs, and saves money for a rainy day,” stated Representative Bill Galvin (D-Canton).
Representative Galvin filed several successful amendments to the budget, including $500,000 for Canton’s Metropolis Rink project, $100,000 for the operation of the Blue Hill Observatory and Science Center, $100,000 for the Norfolk County Fire and Rescue Dispatch, $50,000 to renovate the Stoughton Train Depot, and $150,000 for the Pappas Rehabilitation Hospital for Children’s Summer Program.
The budget continues the Legislature’s commitment to fight the opioid epidemic – a public health crisis that has touched nearly every household across the Commonwealth. To help those in need, the House budget provides all EMS and ambulance companies access to discounted naloxone. In addition, the budget includes $143.9 million for the Bureau of Substance Addiction Services to create five new recovery centers across Massachusetts and $49.4 million for the Substance Use Disorder Trust Fund.
Access to safe, adequate, and affordable housing provides the foundation from which families and individuals can lead successful lives. To this end, the House has made investments in permanent housing solutions and efforts to eliminate homelessness. Since 2013, shelter caseloads have declined dramatically and the number of families living in hotels and motels has decreased to nearly zero. This year, the House included $110 million for the Massachusetts Rental Voucher Program (MRVP), $72 million for Public Housing Subsidies, $7.2 million for Alternative Housing Voucher Program, and $53.4 million for shelters.
The House calls for over $282 million in spending for environmental programs, which will ensure that the state keeps up with the needs of its parks and environmental protection programs. These investments include $46 million for State Parks and Recreation, $61 million for the Department of Environmental Protection, and $1.5 million for Watershed Protection.
This budget ensures funding for crucial health and human services agencies and providers, including $17.9 million towards the Councils on Aging to help senior citizens and $109.8 million to continue reforms that protect children at the Department of Children and Families. In an effort to assist nursing homes and their residents, the budget contains a $35 million increase in the supplemental rates for nursing homes across the Commonwealth and an emergency task force aimed at helping to bring stability to the industry.
For the first time in nearly 20 years, the budget will be increasing the Commonwealth’s contribution into the Community Preservation Act. $36 million more will be distributed to projects across the Commonwealth in FY20. This will help raise the state’s match up to 30 percent for investments in open space, affordable housing, and historic preservation.