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Budget Summary FY2016

Outside Section 31
Data Current as of:  8/19/2015




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Economic Empowerment Trust Fund 1

SECTION 31.   Said chapter 10 is hereby further amended by striking out section 35QQ, as appearing in the 2014 Official Edition, and inserting in place thereof the following section:-

Section 35QQ. (a) There shall be an Economic Empowerment Trust Fund to encourage and facilitate economic empowerment throughout the commonwealth. Funds may be expended to encourage and facilitate economic empowerment programs, including but not limited to programs: (i) establishing financial literacy programs; (ii) creating college savings accounts, in cooperation with the Massachusetts Educational Financing Authority; (iii) establishing college and career readiness programs, particularly in the areas of science, technology, engineering and math; and (iv) supporting and promoting wage equality. The state treasurer shall administer the fund in consultation with the board of trustees established under subsection (b). The fund may accept private contributions, publicly or privately-funded grants and funds appropriated by the state or federal government. No expenditure from the fund shall cause the fund to be in deficiency at the close of the fiscal year. Monies deposited in the fund that are unexpended at the end of the fiscal year shall not revert to the General Fund and shall be available for expenditure in the subsequent fiscal year. The fund shall be an expendable trust fund and shall not be subject to appropriation or allotment.

(b) There shall be a board of trustees of the Economic Empowerment Trust Fund to consist of 20 members. There shall be 6 nonvoting members, 2 of whom shall be appointed by the president of the senate, 1 of whom shall be appointed by the minority leader of the senate, 2 of whom shall be appointed by the speaker of the house of representatives and 1 of whom shall be appointed by the minority leader of the house of representatives. There shall be 14 voting members: the state treasurer or a designee, who shall serve as chair; the attorney general or a designee; the undersecretary of consumer affairs and business regulation or a designee; the commissioner of elementary and secondary education or a designee; the secretary of education or a designee; the secretary of housing and economic development or a designee; and 8 persons to be appointed by the state treasurer, 1 of whom shall have experience in education, 1 of whom shall have experience in financial services, 1 of whom shall have experience in biotechnology, 1 of whom shall have experience in health care, 1 of whom shall have experience in computers or mathematics, 1 of whom shall have experience in life, physical or social sciences, 1 of whom shall have experience in fundraising and 1 of whom shall have experience in architecture or engineering. All nonelected members shall serve for terms of 3 years, and may be reappointed. The state treasurer may expend funds, subject to the approval of the board of trustees, to cover the expenses of administering the fund which may include the hiring of professional staff or an annual independent audit of the financial activities of the fund. The state treasurer may also enter into contracts with private corporations to manage and implement the programmatic fiduciary or administrative goals of the fund, subject to the approval of the board of trustees. The state treasurer may, subject to the approval of the board of trustees, and to the extent necessary, create a 501(c)(3) corporation to fulfill the purposes of the fund. The board of trustees may support and facilitate the establishment of college savings accounts, which shall meet the requirements of a qualified tuition program under 26 U.S.C. Section 529, in cooperation with the Massachusetts Educational Financing Authority, for students throughout the commonwealth. The board of trustees shall develop by-laws and may develop regulations for the implementation of the fund, including guidelines for the establishment of college savings accounts. The state treasurer shall annually report to the clerks of the house of representatives and senate, the house and senate chairs of the joint committee on financial services, the house and senate chairs of the joint committee on education and the chairs of the house and senate committees on ways and means on all programmatic and financial activities and balances of the fund not later than the last Wednesday in December.

(c) Notwithstanding any general or special law to the contrary, the state treasurer and the members of the board of trustees or their designees shall maximize the balance of the fund by soliciting private donations, gifts, grants and bequests for the fund, including through direct and indirect fundraising.