BOSTON (WWLP) – The $3.8 billion economic development bill includes funding for a host of state needs.
A deal was finally struck after months in conference committee, but such things as permanent tax relief did not make it into the final bill. After over three months of negotiations, a deal between the House and Senate was finally struck and on Thursday, both chambers voted to accept the report. However, both bills were originally slated to include nearly $1 billion in tax relief.
Roughly $500 million was in permanent tax cuts and another $500 million was in one-time $250 rebate checks to middle-class tax filers. Due to the emergence of Chapter 62F, tax relief was completely scrapped from the final bill.
Also taken out of the final bill, was a local happy hour option that would have given cities and towns a way to do away with the state ban on drink promotions. Governor Baker’s school safety initiative which would have provided matching grants for security and communication upgrades across grade levels was also left out of the bill.
after years of asking for it, Treasurer Deb Goldberg hit another dead end when the final agreement left out the Massachusetts Lottery’s ability to sell products online. The Treasurer said in a statement:
“I appreciate the excitement that the House had shown including online lottery in its original bill. I look forward to working with the Legislature to pass an online lottery in the next session.”
Top lawmakers announced this week that they also plan to look at permanent tax relief in the next legislative cycle, which begins in January. Having been accepted by both chambers, the final Economic Development bill now sits in front of the Governor.