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Lokvani Team

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The House Ways and Means (HWM) Committee released its proposed budget to invest in our Commonwealth for the Fiscal Year (FY) 2025, which starts in July. The proposal reflects both an increase in anticipated collections from the Fair Share “millionaire” tax and flat growth in other tax collections this fiscal year. The overall slowdown in available revenue is due in part to tax cuts enacted at the end of 2023 expected to reduce collections by $858 million. It is also largely due to the tailing off of federal pandemic aid, including $820 million less for MassHealth due to lower federal reimbursement rates to the state. The budget proposal would support growing investments in many areas while imposing cuts or failing to keep up with inflation in several others. 

A variety of important investments are made possible because budget writers anticipate an increase of $309 million in Fair Share revenue in FY 2025 above the $1 billion annual amount budgeted in FY 2024. For instance, the Committee proposes to use $190 million in Fair Share surtax funds to fully fund free breakfast and lunch programs for students in public schools across the Commonwealth. This amount, $20 million more than proposed by the Governor, would support the nutritional health of all students across the state. The HWM budget proposes to use $605 million of the available $1.3 billion in Fair Share funds for transportation, with $250 million set aside to pay future bonds for capital investments, $235 million proposed for the MBTA, $90 million toward regional transit authorities, and the remainder for ferries and municipal roadways.

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