Lawmakers approve $34B Mass. budget
BOSTON (AP) -- A state budget is headed to Gov. Deval Patrick's desk after lawmakers approved the $34 billion spending plan Monday afternoon.
The budget includes additional state aid for cities and towns and enough funding for the University of Massachusetts to avoid a tuition increase in the upcoming academic year.
The House voted 123-29 and the Senate 36-3 to accept the compromise spending plan worked out by a six-member conference committee over the past several weeks.
The new fiscal year started on Monday, but the state will continue to operate under a stopgap budget until Patrick reviews the spending plan.
The budget calls for a $21 million increase in unrestricted local aid and provides $479 million for the University of Massachusetts.
The spending plan relies in part on $500 million in new taxes included in a separate transportation finance package on Patrick's desk.