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Governor Patrick Signs 2014 Budget

People-Deval Patrick2BOSTON (WGGB) — Governor Deval Patrick today signed a $33.6 billion budget for Fiscal Year 2014.

It makes significant investments in education, health care cost containment and youth violence prevention.

The budget includes a significant investment in the state’s public universities and colleges, moving the state towards funding 50 percent of public higher education costs within the UMass system, and thus avoiding tuition and fee increases for students at our public campuses across the state in the coming year.

Additionally, $15 million in new investments for early education will help reduce the waitlist for high-quality early education programs.

That will provide access for over 1,000 new eligible children.

The FY14 budget also reflects the Patrick Administration’s efforts to reduce the state’s reliance on one-time budget solutions.

It includes a withdrawal from the Stabilization Fund of $350 million, leaving the fund with a balance of at least $1.25 billion, and positioning the Commonwealth to have one of the nation’s largest reserve fund balances.

The Governor also took action today to ensure that the budget is in balance, in light of the currently unresolved status of the transportation finance bill, which raises revenue to support not only transportation, but also other needs in the FY14 budget.

In order to balance the budget, the Governor vetoed $240 million in transportation funding and $177 million in Unrestricted General Government Aid.

Governor Patrick also filed a FY14 supplemental budget as well today.

That includes a provision to automatically restore full funding for transportation and unrestricted local aid, should the Legislature accept his amendment to the transportation finance bill.

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