- Budget Message
- Issues in Brief
- Budget Recommendations
- Local Aid to Cities and Towns
- Capital Budget and Debt
Outside Section Summary
Outside Sections (view all) (view all - with summaries) (view all - summaries only)
SECTION 4 - State Finance and Governance Oversight BoardSummary:
This section renames the Finance Advisory Board as the State Finance and Governance Oversight Board and broadens its mission to enhance oversight of and ensure best practices for finances and governance at state entities that manage public funds.
SECTION 5 - Secretary Performance Management ProgramsSummary:
This section requires each Secretary to develop a strategic plan and establish an office of performance management to execute the plan as part of a performance management program for the agencies within the Secretary's executive office.
SECTION 6 - Improve Services to Children, Youth and FamiliesSummary:
This section authorizes the Executive Office of Health and Human Services (EOHHS) to better coordinate its agencies' activities to benefit children, youth and families, and authorizes appropriate data sharing among those agencies. Additionally, in order to improve educational opportunities for children and students receiving services from EOHHS agencies by making more effective use of data, the section authorizes health and human services agencies, state education agencies and school districts to share certain data, subject to federal law. Regulations governing this data and the manner in which it can be shared are to be proposed for public comment within 90 days after enactment.
SECTION 7 - Superintendent Responsible for State House OnlySummary:
The section changes the name of the Bureau of State Office Buildings to the Bureau of the State House. This section transfers the responsibility of all of the buildings currently under the responsibility of the Bureau of State Office buildings, except the State House, to the Divison of Caiptal Asset Management (DCAM). The Bureau of the Statehouse will maintain responsibility for oversight of the State House.
SECTION 8 - Transfer State Lab from DPH to State PoliceSummary:
This section transfers the state laboratory that tests illegal drugs from the Department of Public Health to the State Police.
SECTION 9 - Changes to Present Tax LawsSummary:
This section changes present tax laws by: * modernizing the sales factor for apportioning the corporate excise among states, by sourcing to where services are received; * clarifying that the present room occupancy excise applies to Internet room resellers; * delaying for one additional year the "FAS 109" deduction from the corporate excise; * closing a loophole, by taxing non-insurance subsidiaries of insurance companies as if they were business corporations; * repealing the exemption of candy and soda from the sales tax; * clarifying that losing lottery tickets cannot be claimed as trade or business expenses; * increasing the cigarette excise by 50 cents to $3.01 per pack; and increasing other tobacco taxes (cigars, smokeless, roll-your-own, etc.) to reflect the previous and new cigarette excise increases.
SECTION 10 - Extend Property Tax Exemption for Gold Star Surviving SpousesSummary:
Currently Gold Star spouses receive a property tax exemption for five years, with a cap of $2500/year in years six and after. This section makes this exemption permanent until the Gold Star spouse dies or remarries. The estimated $135,000 annual cost is included in the property tax abatement appropriation.
SECTION 11 - Expand Bottle BillSummary:
This section expands the state's bottle deposit law to include containers for non-carbonated drinks like water, juices, coffee-based drinks and sport drinks.
SECTION 12 - Restrict Funeral Expense PaymentsSummary:
This section prevents funeral homes from charging more than $3,500 if they want to receive state payment for funeral, burial, and cremation expenses of public assistance recipients.
SECTION 13 - Criminal Defendant Indigency Verification-- Require Data MatchSummary:
When a court's chief probation officer verifies a criminal defendant's indigency before free counsel is appointed, this section requires (rather than allows) the officer to access relevant data held by the state Departments of Revenue and Transitional Assistance and the Registry of Motor Vehicles.
SECTION 14 - Extend Authority to Terminate and Renegotiate LeasesSummary:
This section extends through fiscal year 2013 the present legislative authorization for DCAM to terminate state agency and court facility leases for insufficient funding, and to realize operating budget cost savings by renegotiating lease terms in return for extending lease terms to as much as a total of 15 years.
SECTION 15 - Postpone Regional Transit Authority Forward FundingSummary:
This section postpones until July 1, 2014 the requirement for forward-funding the regional transit authorities.
SECTION 16 - Allow Medical Security Trust Fund Deficit for Fiscal Year 2013Summary:
This section extends the law allowing the Medical Security Trust Fund to be in deficit at the close of fiscal years 2010 to 2012, to apply also to fiscal year 2013.
SECTION 17 - Expenditures from Fiscal Year 2012 SurplusSummary:
This section distributes any surplus at the end of fiscal year 2012 in the following order, to the extent that funds are available: * $15,000,000 to the Massachusetts Life Sciences Investment Fund * $10,000,000 to the Workforce Competitiveness Trust Fund, including funding to establish regional centers of excellence at community colleges, vocational or technical high schools, * $65,000,000 in additional local aid; * the remaining balance to the Commonwealth Stabilization Fund.
SECTION 18 - Extend Authorization to Transfer Trust BalancesSummary:
This section extends to fiscal year 2013 authorizations in the fiscal year 2011 and 2012 budgets to transfer to the General Fund certain trust and account balances.
SECTION 19 - Inspector General's Health Safety Net Audit UnitSummary:
This section allows the Inspector General's Office to continue to audit the Health Safety Net Trust Fund.
SECTION 20 - Nursing Home AssessmentSummary:
This section establishes the amount of revenue to be obtained from the nursing home assessment in fiscal year 2013.
SECTION 21 - Pension Cost of Living AdjustmentSummary:
This section provides for a 3% increase on the first $13,000 in pension benefits for retired state employees. The section is included each year in the budget.
SECTION 22 - Personnel Cost SavingsSummary:
This section sets up a mechanism to accomplish up to $30 million in savings from reducing the number of state employee positions in fiscal year 2013.
SECTION 23 - Stabilization Fund TransfersSummary:
This section: * transfers $400 million to the General Fund from the Commonwealth Stabilization Fund, but allows the Secretary of Administration and Finance to reduce the amount transferred; * cancels for fiscal year 2013 the automatic deposit into the Stabilization Fund of 0.5 percent of total tax revenue, but allows some or all of the transfer to be made if the Secretary certifies that funds are available; and * transfers interest on the Stabilization Fund during fiscal year 2013 to the General Fund.
SECTION 24 - Suspension of Tourism FormulaSummary:
This section suspends the statutory tourism fund formula for fiscal year 2013. This section has been routine in recent budgets.
SECTION 25 - UMass/Health and Human Services Interagency Service AgreementsSummary:
This section enables the Executive Office of Health and Human Services to contract services to the University of Massachusetts to perform them in the most cost-efficient manner.
SECTION 26 - Authority to Restructure MassHealth BenefitsSummary:
This section authorizes the Secretary of Health and Human Services to restructure MassHealth benefits within state appropriation limits and as allowed by federal law, and requires 90 days advance report to the Legislature on the fiscal impact of any proposed restructuring.
SECTION 27 - Initial Gross Payments to Qualifying Acute Care HospitalsSummary:
This section provides for the annual transfer from the General Fund of "seed money" to make initial gross payments to acute hospitals. This seed money is later repaid to the General Fund.
SECTION 28 - MassHealth and CommCare Dental CoverageSummary:
This section gives EOHHS and the Commonwealth Health Connector Authority board the necessary discretion to make MassHealth and Commonwealth Care dental coverage or service limitation decisions.
SECTION 29 - Nursing and Resident Care Facility Base YearSummary:
This section changes to 2005 the base year for setting fiscal year 2013 nursing and resident care facility rates.
SECTION 30 - Community College ReformSummary:
In order to ensure that the community colleges are aligned to execute a coherent mission that best serves students and responds to the needs of the workforce and regional employers, this section authorizes the Board of Higher Education to allocate funds among the community colleges and to appoint and remove their presidents. It also provides that the Governor will appoint the chair of each community college board of trustees. This section also establishes a study commission on higher education financing, chaired by the Secretary of Education.
SECTION 31 - Effective DateSummary:
This section provides that this budget takes effect on July 1, 2012 unless otherwise specified.
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