(TheRedWire.com) – Massachusetts lawmakers continue to debate their annual $2.8 billion funding bill which includes shelter system emergency funding. Democratic Gov. Maura Healey has been pushing for an additional $250 million to be added to shelter spending as the state is struggling to accommodate all the new migrant families that have arrived in the state.
The House and Senate versions of the budget have agreed to the additional $250 million however, where the disagreement lies is in the measures and restrictions they will have for the use of these funds, with the House pushing for more restrictions.
According to their proposal, $75 million should be used for school costs, $18 million for temporary shelter, $65 million for shelters, $6 million for municipal support, and $12 million for family services.
The Senate has argued on the other hand that more flexibility was required when handling the migrant issue and noted that the problems with the shelter system could end up resulting in a humanitarian crisis.
Democratic state Senators who are in control of the upper chamber have also stated that they are reluctant over the language that would allow for an overflow site to be created within 30 days in order for the state’s 7,500-family cap to be maintained.
The spending bill failed to pass only one day after the Senate passed its version.
Democratic lawmaker Michael J. Rodriguez added that this has been a “long time coming.” As he pointed out they were providing the administration with flexibility that would allow them to make changes to certain issues as the crisis developed every day.
Massachusetts is not the only state that has issues with the migrant crisis. In New York, the mayor of New York City Eric Adams had repeatedly argued that more assistance is needed from both state and federal officials as the city struggles to provide housing to close to 110,000 asylum seekers.
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