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Governor’s cuts include earmarks, CIES language

Gov. Charlie Baker signed a $38.92 FY’17 budget on July 8, cutting $256 million from the spending plan and changing language in some line items that could affect spending. The House and Senate can choose to override the vetoes before the budget is finalized.

Of note among the Governor’s cuts is language in the Employment Services Programs line item (4401-1000) that removes the guarantee to fund Competitive Integrated Employment Services at the FY’16 level – estimated by the Providers’ Council to be about $7 million. The Young Parents Program funding is also affected by this change.

Overall, Health and Human Services line items were cut by more than $71 million, some of which comes from MassHealth and other healthcare related items. Gov. Baker left intact the more than $36 million for funding Chapter 257 rates, and included another $15 million in a supplemental budget filed simultaneously with the FY’17 budget.

Several of the Governor’s vetoes reduced allocations to match his original H2 budget proposal, striking earmarks for specific programs, such as $75,000 for transportation services also in the ESP line item. Increases in funding were maintained throughout the budget process for addiction treatment services and the Department of Children and Families. The Department of Transitional Assistance took the biggest hit, including a reduction of more than $9 million for TANF.

You can review the Governor’s vetoes here. The Providers’ Council’s budget spreadsheet is available here. If you have a question or your programs are impacted, please e-mail Bill Yelenak.