How Massachusetts’ $1 trillion budget will affect businesses
The Massachusetts Senate has approved a $1.8 trillion budget for the next two years, and lawmakers are set to take the final step of the year on Wednesday to set up the budget process for the rest of the session.
The budget, passed by the House of Representatives on March 9, will now head to the House floor for a vote, where lawmakers will have to approve it by a simple majority.
The House passed the budget in a vote of 235-198.
The Senate, which passed the bill in the same fashion, has yet to take a vote.
This year, Massachusetts is set to have its first $1 billion deficit since 2010, and the budget, which was approved in the statehouse by a vote that was over 100-0, was widely criticized as a failure to address the state’s serious economic challenges.
Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker and lawmakers have vowed to address these challenges by making investments to address the long-term challenges facing the state, such as the opioid epidemic and the rising cost of healthcare.
President Donald Trump’s administration has also pushed for more investment in infrastructure and education, but there are concerns about how this budget will be paid for.
While the budget is expected to provide the majority of the state budget, the state could face cuts to programs like education, which are critical to keeping our children and families safe and thriving.
In its current form, the budget does not have a single dollar earmarked for the state education budget, a critical priority for the education system.
With an estimated $11 billion deficit, the Senate budget would be the largest in the country.
Governor Baker has promised to make significant investments in education funding, but it is unclear whether these investments will be made before the end of the legislative session.