Senate Leaders Roll Out $39.5 Billion State Budget Plan

State House - 2BOSTON (AP) — Massachusetts Senate leaders are rolling out a $39.5 billion state budget plan that increases spending on local schools and public higher education.

The proposed spending plan for the fiscal year starting July 1 relies on no new taxes and has a bottom line lower than budget plans approved by the House and proposed by Republican Gov. Charlie Baker.

Democratic Senate Ways and Means Chairwoman Karen Spilka said the budget includes more rental vouchers for homeless families, money to combat elder abuse, an increase in trial court spending and a bump in clothing allowances for homeless children.

Spilka said despite the additional spending, the Senate budget represents an increase of just 2.9 percent compared to the current fiscal year.

The full Senate is expected to debate the budget next week.

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