BOSTON – The Massachusetts House of Representatives and State Representative Richard M. Haggerty (D-Woburn) passed its Fiscal Year 2024 (FY24) budget. This budget responds to the needs of residents and makes targeted investments that provide support for families across the Commonwealth. Funded at $56.2 billion, the House’s FY24 budget provides strong support for the Commonwealth’s cities and towns, and among many critical investments, includes significant funding for education, transportation, health care, housing, and workforce development.
Representative Haggerty was pleased to have secured $275,000 in direct state funding for the City of Woburn. Haggerty filed several amendments on the City’s behalf during this year’s budget debate, with the House approving a $100,000 earmark for downtown improvements to implement the recommendations of the City of Woburn’s report from the Massachusetts Downtown Initiative Local Rapid Recovery program and $175,000 to the Woburn Youth Hockey Association for capital improvements to the Ned O’Brien Ice Rink.
“This budget reflects our values by further investing in education and infrastructure, as well as making sure the Commonwealth and its residents can continue to compete in a dynamic economy,” said Representative Haggerty. “I am particularly pleased Woburn will benefit from the direct funding for improvements and investments to our downtown, the Ned O’Brien Ice Rink, and the allocation of money for free school meals for our school children. Furthermore, the local aid resources will help our communities support public safety efforts and the general operations of our municipality.”
The $100,000 for downtown builds upon a separate $125,000 earmark the representative secured from the American Rescue Plan Act monies appropriated last year. That money is currently being utilized alongside city funds to rebuild the pocket park in downtown.
The funding for capital improvements to the Ned O’Brien Ice Rink will be used to create new signage for the rink, honoring U.S. Navy Seaman Edward ‘Ned’ O’Brien who was killed in action during Vietnam. Other portions of the monies may be utilized by Woburn Youth Hockey for landscaping improvements, to replace the rink-wide humidifier or the rinks heating units.
The FY24 House budget funds Unrestricted General Government Aid (UGGA) for the City of Woburn at $7 million and Chapter 70 education funding at $13.5 million.
The House’s action represents preliminary approval of the funding, as these earmarks must still be agreed to by the Senate and signed by Governor Maura Healey before the money can be released to the city.