To the Honorable Senate and House of Representatives:
I am filing for your consideration a bill recommending Fiscal Year 2007 supplemental appropriations totaling $88.9 million. This legislation is necessary to address $70.3 million in immediate deficiencies in addition to the $23.5 million in Fiscal Year 2007 appropriations be made available for expenditure in Fiscal Year 2008 for collective bargaining costs, the Summer Jobs program and the Public Safety initiatives.
The supplemental items to fund existing obligations include:
- $17 million for county corrections costs related to rising inmate populations and fixed costs along with decreases in deeds revenue;
- $15.6 million for unanticipated costs due to the re-procurement of the system of care at Department of Social Services (DSS);
- $8 million for snow and ice removal from the past winter season.
In addition, $15 million has been added for public safety initiatives, which includes $11 million for "Shannon Grants" in an effort to combat gang violence through coordinated prevention and intervention programs. These grants will be distributed by the Executive Office of Public Safety on a competitive basis. Separately, $4 million has been recommended for municipal police officer grants for targeted police hiring, training and other related costs.
Lastly, $3.6 million has been added to support the dairy farmers of Massachusetts including an outside section to study the problem further.
Pursuant to Section 7 of Chapter 150E of the General Laws, I submit for your consideration appropriation recommendations to fund the Fiscal Year 2007 and 2008 incremental costs contained in two collective bargaining agreements between the Berkshire Sheriff and the Berkshire County Sheriff's Office Employees' Association and the Berkshire County Sheriff's Office Communications Center. This legislation places a total of $472,438 in 2 reserves from which funds may be transferred to departments' operating accounts to meet the Fiscal Year 2007 and 2008 costs of
the salary adjustments and other economic benefits which are required by the agreements. Copies of the agreements, and estimates of the costs thereof for Fiscal Years 2007 and 2008 are being submitted separately to the Committees on Ways and Means.
Sufficient revenues are estimated to be available to finance these appropriations. I urge your prompt and favorable consideration of this bill.
Deval L. Patrick