Rep. Ultrino secures money for community garden, education
BOSTON – Malden State Representative Steve Ultrino joined his colleagues in the Massachusetts House of Representatives to pass its FY16 budget which emphasizes economic growth through investments in multiple areas including education and local aid, reform to the state’s transportation system, and an acute focus on improving behavioral health services. Before passing its final budget, the House approved several amendments offered by Representative Ultrino that invest in the City of Malden.
The $38.05 billion spending bill highlights the House’s ongoing commitment to fiscal prudence and targeted investments, a practice that has resulted in Massachusetts retaining its AA+ bond rating, the highest in the state’s history. The budget includes no new taxes or fees and reduces its reliance on one time revenue sources. For the first time since 2007, it does not withdraw any funds from the Commonwealth’s stabilization fund, leaving the balance in excess of $1 billion.
The final House budget also incorporates amendments offered by Representative Ultrino, including $35,000 for a community garden and an additional $550,000 for the state’s expanded learning time (ELT) grant, which supports the Salemwood and Ferryway schools, as well as other schools throughout the state.
"I am pleased that this budget incorporated much-needed funding for Malden," said Representative Ultrino. "These investments will help our community grow for years to come."
"Representative Ultrino was instrumental in securing additional funding for the ELT grant, which had been cut earlier in the process," said Susan Lovelace, the Massachusetts State Director for the National Center on Time & Learning. "Malden was the first city to adopt an expanded learning time program under this grant, and the schools have seen tremendous results with this investment."
"The expanded learning time grant has proven very beneficial to Malden Public Schools," said Malden Superintendent David Derousi. "We reached out to Rep. Ultrino when this funding was cut, and we have been able to get some of that money back."
The FY16 budget now moves on to the Massachusetts Senate.
- Alex Pratt, Office of State Representative Steven Ultrino