House Budget Season
We’re navigating the State House’s new hybrid work environment, alongside a return to the regular rhythms of the legislative calendar. Right now, that means it’s budget season! It has been wonderful to spend the last budget of my career back in the chamber with colleagues. I’m even more excited because of the progressive policies that we passed in the House budget. First, though, let me tell you a little bit about what we included for organizations in the 11th Suffolk District. Mental and behavioral healthcare expansion was my focus for the 2023 fiscal year. I’m grateful to leadership and to my colleagues for passing 3 of the budget amendments I filed to the FY23 budget:
$200,000 for substance abuse treatment continuum of care at Dimock Community Health Center
$100,000 for substance use prevention and treatment outreach at Project RIGHT in Grove Hall
$100,000 for medically tailored meals for chronically ill people and job training for individuals in recovery provided by Community Servings (please consider volunteering at their newly expanded facility on Amory St.)
I am going to keep advocating for additional funding for the trauma-informed trainings and in-school mental health care that the Alliance for Inclusion and Prevention provides to K-12 districts, for funding for ESOL programs at Casserly House, and for money for substance use treatment outreach for veterans at Harvard Street Community Health Center. As my colleagues in the Senate prepare to debate their version of the budget over the next few weeks, I am looking forward to their support of these programs.
As I said, in addition to the funding that we were able to secure in the House’s version of the state budget, I was energized by the progressive legislation that we were able to pass. From ending exploitative fees when prisoners call their families to banning child marriage, providing resources for youth who could benefit from PrEP HIV prevention, offering incentives for electric vehicles to help meet our climate challenges, and legislation that encourages state agencies to collect accurate and inclusive demographic data, this house budget moves us forward. Now it’s time for us all to continue our advocacy for these priorities as the Senate prepares to debate its version of the budget.
There’s always more work to be done, but we are making some big strides forward together. I look forward to updating you on the final FY’23 budget once our process is completed in the coming months.