Thursday, July 16, 2015

Tarr Priorities Reflected in State Budget

Governor Baker’s Approval Expected by Saturday

Boston- In addition to advancing several policy initiatives with state-wide implication in the $38.1 billion annual state budget, Senate Minority Leader Bruce Tarr (R-Gloucester) notes that, upon Governor Baker’s signature, our region is slated to receive substantial support across an array of needs.

Some regional budget highlights championed by Tarr include:
  • $75,000.00 for the Grace Center in Gloucester, which serves individuals dependent on shelter housing with a wide array of programming and support services.
  • $120,000 for the North Shore Health Project’s Hepatitis C program.
  • $50,000 for skills training to be conducted by the Gloucester Marine Genomics Academy. These funds will provide training for those seeking to enter the marine sciences and biotechnology fields, building on the success of the Gloucester Marine Genomics institute.
  • $100,000 for an opiate diversion and treatment program in Gloucester and potentially two other communities.
  • $20,000 in funding to assist the town of Rockport in further exploring the creation of dockage and other facilities through a 600 foot extension of Granite Pier and other changes in the harbor.
  • $300,000 to fund a Buy Local Seafood program including locally harvested seafood.
  • $50,000 to continue a phragmites mitigation plan in marshes between Gloucester and Salisbury.
  • $25,000 to conduct research by the University of Massachusetts Extension program relative to honey bee mortality, as well as to provide general support and make recommendations on preventing hive loss to the apiary inspection program, county beekeeping associations and statewide pollinator stewardship efforts.
  • $100,000 for a Great Marsh green crab trapping program.
  • $15,000 for a North Reading Safety Grant for the Community Impact Team’s efforts in community safety.

The budget was given final approval by the House and Senate on July 8th, Governor Baker has until Saturday the 18th for his final approval of the budget document. Gubernatorial vetoes can only be overridden by a two-thirds vote of both the House and Senate.