Rep. Dykema Supports FY22 Funding for Holliston in State Budget

(BOSTON) – This week, Rep. Carolyn Dykema (D-Holliston) joined her colleagues in voting to unanimously support the House’s $47.7 billion Fiscal Year 2022 budget. Budget deliberations lasted from Monday to Wednesday, where legislators considered over 1100 amendments to the state budget as the Commonwealth continues to navigate the challenging economic atmosphere created by the COVID-19 pandemic.

In January, the Legislature and the Baker Administration agreed on a consensus revenue number for FY22 of $30.12 billion, 3.5% growth over the revised FY21 projections. This modest growth, paired with slow but continuing recovery from the pandemic and new federal relief funds, allowed the House to increase spending for key programs in the budget while minimizing withdrawals from the state’s stabilization fund.

Budget highlights included $5.5 billion in Chapter 70 funding for public K-12 schools, $1.2 billion in unrestricted local aid, and a $1.4 billion increase in MassHealth spending to fully fund health care needs due to COVID-19. Funding was also increased for critical programs for vulnerable residents including $1.8 billion for disability services, $160 million for addiction treatment, and nearly $600 million for housing assistance.

Under this budget, Holliston is projected to receive $8,014,336 in Chapter 70 school funding and $1,701,961 in Unrestricted General Governmental Aid. Increases to Special Education Circuit Breaker reimbursements and one-time school supports related to COVID-19 impacts, will help support school programming while keeping students safe and healthy.

Rep. Dykema also secured $100,000 for improvements to Goodwill Park and $30,000 for a memorial dedicated to veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts. In addition, Rep. Dykema led the statewide effort to secure $1.3 million in funding for YMCA Youth-at-Risk grants to support afterschool and remote learning programs, scholarships, and summer camps for vulnerable youth and teens.

“I was pleased to join my colleagues in unanimously supporting a comprehensive, sensible budget that helps our towns continue to weather the impacts of COVID-19,” said Rep. Dykema. “So many of the programs that we’ve funded will have direct impacts on our local residents at this challenging time, particularly funding for schools and health care.”

Rep. Dykema, the newly appointed House Chair of the Joint Committee on the Environment, Natural Resources, and Agriculture, also helped lead efforts to secure over $300 million in environmental funding, including increases for state parks, environmental protection, and the endangered species program. Additional investments include millions for hazardous waste site cleanup, river protection and access, and water infrastructure. The House also adopted an amendment to increase the popular Conservation Land Tax Credit for the preservation of open space.

“With this budget, we are reinforcing our Commonwealth’s commitments to national leadership in climate response, supporting our agriculture economy, and protecting our water and precious natural resources,” said Rep. Dykema. “The limitations that COVID-19 has placed on our everyday life over the past year have underscored the value of outdoor spaces. This budget will fund upkeep of our state parks and ensure equitable access to outdoor recreation for all Massachusetts residents.”

The FY22 budget now travels to the Senate for consideration. Once each chamber has approved its version of the budget, the House and Senate will work to produce a final consolidated document for the Governor’s signature.

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