The MA Legislature just voted on its FY17 budget, which now goes to the Governor’s desk, where he has 10 days to review and make any vetoes.
The news in relation to Network priorities is mixed, but given the current state fiscal picture, we also can be pleased. Please click here for line-by-line breakdown of our priorities and where they landed, but I will summarize key provisions here:
- Secure Jobs:Funded at $800,000 (minus an allocation from the Housing Trust Fund). This will require a sharp reduction in funding of our Secure Jobs program.
- Raising the individual shelter bed rate to $30/night: This did not pass. A small amount of additional funding was allocated in this line-item which will translate to very small increases to individual shelters.
- Local Consortiums (prevention/coordinated entry initiative): Not funded. This will mean that once any carry-over funds from FY16 are expended, this program ends.
- Youth housing and services:Funded at $1 million. In addition to the carryover from FY16, this funding will allow the youth initiative to continue through FY17.
- Expansion of RAFT to include individuals: PASSED. This is a huge victory!
- Expansion of HomeBASE eligibility to include families in domestic violence shelters: Another huge victory!
- Western MA Network to End Homelessness:Funded at $125,000. Once again, we are very grateful to all of our Western MA legislators, including Representative Peter Kocot as the lead sponsor, for their support of our Network.
Please reach out to your legislator to thank him or her for their hard work and support of many of our priorities (go here to find your legislator). Also, please contact the Governor’s office to urge his support of the budget in general and our priorities in particular.
Happy 4th of July!