April 29 2019

Proposed House Budget Includes Funds for Burlington Transportation and Increase in Education Funding

By: BNEWS

A House of Representatives budget for the next fiscal year includes funds to help with transportation issues in Burlington.

State Representative Ken Gordon (D-Bedford) joined his colleagues in the House of Representatives to pass its Fiscal Year 2020 (FY20) budget, which invests in programs and services across the Commonwealth, a release from Gordon’s office says. Funded at $42.7 billion, the House budget makes major investments in education, substance-use disorder services, health care, and other areas.

The release says that two important amendments filed by Rep. Gordon were included in the House FY20 budget.

The first is the House allocated $125,000 for a shuttle service that will support restaurants in Burlington by providing transportation for otherwise unemployed workers from Lowell so that they can get to work and fill more than 400 open positions at local restaurants. The plan is that the program will be funded largely by public investment in the first year, and then will transition to private support over the next three years. It will operate through the Middlesex 3 Transportation Management Association.

The public portion of funding had been approved by the Administration through authority provided by previous legislation, but at the last minute the Federal Highway Administration advised that its portion of funding was inaccessible, the release says.   

“The Commonwealth has stepped in to make up for that lost funding,” said Gordon. “We will not allow red tape or political complication stand in the way of people finding jobs, or employers filling openings.”

The House budget also has an increase for Burlington in education funding and local aid. According to the release Burlington’s Chapter 70 Education Funding will be $6,851,477, a $333,543 increase over last year, if the budget passes as it currently stands. Additionally local aid will increase by $73,110 for a total of $2,780,883.

"I am proud that the House has yet again assembled a fiscally responsible budget that increases funding to public schools and local governments, ensuring that our cities and towns have the resources they need to continue to succeed,” Gordon said. “This budget represents a significant step forward for our residents and particularly our students, who will benefit from important education funding increases.”

The FY20 budget proposal now goes to the Massachusetts State Senate, where debate begins in May.


 

 
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