BOSTON (SHNS) – The Massachusetts Senate on Tuesday launches debate on its $49.7 billion fiscal 2023 budget and senators are eager to make major changes to the bill authored by Senate budget chief Michael Rodrigues.

According to a Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation analysis, the 1,178 budget amendments filed this year have a total fiscal impact of $3.5 billion, with 60 percent of amendments earmarking funds for local projects and totaling $280 million.

If history is a judge, the vast majority of those spending proposals will fail, as senators usually agree to tens of millions of added spending. Senate Democrats, who hold 37 of the branch’s 40 seats, are also determined to load the spending bill (S 4) with policy proposals, which are reflected in 260 amendments. Most of those will also likely fizzle out.

Budget bills in both branches typically attract scores of amendments from lawmakers who are aware that budgets make it to the governor’s desk, unlike many of their standalone proposals that are dying while technically “under review” in various committees. There are 261 budget amendments that propose new outside sections to the budget, MTF said. Such budget riders, which often have nothing to do with spending, have come in and out of favor over the years, depending on which Democrats are running the branches.

At times, Democrats have trumpeted efforts to keep policy riders out of spending bills as a good government reform. Thirty-eight amendments propose tax law changes, but some are duplicative, MTF said, leaving 19 separate tax changes on the table. Budget deliberations start on Tuesday and senators usually motor through amendments to finish well before Memorial Day weekend.

Most amendments are dispensed with without public debate. Senators often withdraw proposals after learning through private talks that their ideas lack support. To speed things along, senators also adopt and reject large bundles of amendments, often by logging them electronically into “yes” and “no” groupings and voice-voting them up or down without any public explanation.