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GOP, Administration Spar over Mass. Aid Cut

BOSTON (AP) — A Republican leader at the Statehouse says Gov. Deval Patrick’s administration is giving incorrect and misleading information about its proposal to reduce state assistance to cities and towns.

But the governor’s top budget official shot back that critics of the local aid cut are being “disingenuous.”

The dispute follows Patrick’s unveiling of a plan to close an estimated $540 million state budget shortfall, which includes a $9 million, or 1 percent, cut in local aid.

House GOP leader Brad Jones said Thursday that Patrick was not being upfront with taxpayers because the plan also includes other reductions that could be “disastrous” for cities and towns.

But Secretary of Administration and Finance Jay Gonzalez says the criticism disregards the many steps the governor has taken over the past six years to help local communities.

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