Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Spilka Announces Restored Funding for Downtown, MA Projects

A message from Senator Karen Spilka - Great news for the Town of Franklin and the downtown!
Dear Franklin Town Officials,
I am pleased to announce that the Massachusetts legislature restored funding to critical local and statewide programs by overriding the Governor’s budget vetoes to the fiscal year 2016 budget.    

Funding was restored for the following initiatives:

·         $50,000 for a NEW initiative for substance abuse coalition in Franklin.
·         $60,000 for school zone safety improvements.
·         $50,000 for a NEW initiative to construct a statue of Horace Mann.
·         Fully funds the Regional Transit Authorities at $82 Million ($2 Million increase from FY 2015).
·         $9 Million in local state aid for libraries ($55,000 increase over FY 2015) to directly provide aid and support to local library initiatives. These funds will allow local libraries to increase technology resources, educational resources, as well as retain crucial staff levels.
·         $9.9 Million for Regional Library aid ($29,000 increase over FY 2015) to help to fund the interlibrary loan system in the Commonwealth for increased sharing of resources.
·         Includes $18 Million for Kindergarten Expansion Grants which help to support and maintain full-day kindergarten programs.
·         $14.2 Million for Massachusetts Cultural Council ($2.4 Million over the FY 2015 post-9c amount). This is the highest it has been funded since FY 2002.
·         $14.6 Million for Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism which is $300,000 over FY 2015 post-9C amount.
·         Maintains existing funding for DCR State Park Operations, ensuring the same high level of service in FY 2016 as in FY 2015 and keep the same 143 parks open this year as were open last year.
·         $100,000 to establish the 495/MetroWest Suburban Edge Community Commission to study development challenges being experienced by suburban communities.   

As always, if you have any questions or would like additional information, please call Puja Mehta in my office at (617) 722-1640. I look forward to continuing to work with you to make Franklin stronger.
Puja Mehta, J.D.
District Director
Office of Senator Karen E. Spilka
Senate Ways and Means
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