BOSTON (WWLP) – More than a billion dollars in surplus revenue will now go towards things like rural school aid and public higher education, a net positive for residents in the western part of the state.
On Friday, Governor Charlie Baker signed the spending plan after it was passed by both branches of the state legislature. The supplemental budget was the last thing that needed approval to close the fiscal year which ended almost 6 months ago.
“We’ve both said that we wanted to see a Supp, and we had a series of elements associated with it that we wanted to see in it and while we didn’t get many of the things we were looking for it is a far better solution than not doing something,” Governor Baker said.
Western Massachusetts lawmakers told 22News they were also happy to see a supplemental budget pass because key funding would have been taken away from residents in their district.
Pittsfield State Senator Adam Hinds voiced his support for the $1 million that will now go towards Rural School Aid. Longmeadow State Senator Eric Lesser said the bill will also do more to keep students across the Commonwealth safe at school.
“There’s also going to be new funding for school security grants that help improve security at our schools, especially our middle schools and high schools,” Sen. Lesser said.
Funding was also secured for regional school transportation, public transportation, and many other local causes. The governor did veto four parts of the bill related to automatic voter registration.