BOSTON (WWLP) – The state legislature is still trying to agree on how to spend $5 billion from the American Rescue Plan.
After weeks of heated debate, state leaders came face to face on Monday at the statehouse to discuss how to spend federal funds. During their first leadership meeting since the beginning of the pandemic, House Speaker Ron Mariano, Senate President Karen Spilka, and Governor Charlie Baker made a case for how the American Rescue Plan funding should be spent.
Mariano and Spilka would like to see the funding go through the legislature to ensure it is spent in an equitable way, but Gov. Baker wants to see $2.9 billion spent on housing, environmental infrastructure, and job training right now.
“I think some of this stuff needs to happen sooner rather than later,” Gov. Baker said.
The money is currently in a separate fund and the ways and means committee will hold a series of hearings to decide how to spend it. It could take months before a clear spending plan is made.