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BOSTON – Gov. Deval L. Patrick says his fiscal 2015 budget proposal supports job-growth priorities and works to close the so-called “achievement gap” in education.
Patrick’s budget, filed last month, proposes state spending of $36.374 billion, a 4.9 percent increase from the fiscal 2014 package passed by the state legislature. The spending increase is in line with projected tax-revenue growth of 4.9 percent, Patrick said in a statement. Additionally, the budget relies on $334 million in one-time revenue.
On the transportation front, Patrick’s budget increases funding for the Mass. Department of Transportation and the Mass. Bay Transit Authority by $141 million. “Investing in a comprehensive and reliable transportation system for the commonwealth creates jobs and opportunity for all our residents and is essential to our economic vitality,” Patrick said in a statement.
The budget includes $25 million for the Mass. Life Sciences Center to provide research grants and accelerator loans to researchers and early-stage companies, and support workforce-development efforts in the life sciences field.
Patrick proposed $3.1 million for kindergarten-expansion grants and a record $100 million increase in Chapter 70 local education aid.
The budget proposal also includes $1.1 billion in funding for higher education. •