Who is a member?
Our members are the local governments of Massachusetts and their elected and appointed leadership.
The Honorable Nick Collins, Senate Chair
The Honorable Danielle W. Gregoire, House Chair
Joint Committee on Bonding, Capital Expenditures and State Assets
State House, Boston
Dear Chair Collins, Chair Gregoire, and Distinguished Members of the Committee,
On behalf of cities and towns across the Commonwealth, we are writing to express our strong support for several municipal priorities included in H. 4336, An Act financing the general governmental infrastructure of the Commonwealth, which was recently heard by your committee.
We were pleased to see a bond bill that acknowledges several critical needs throughout all municipalities in the Commonwealth: local infrastructure, improvements to drinking water supply, housing programs, cultural facilities, and technology initiatives.
We respectfully ask for your support for these programs within H. 4336:
The proposal includes $100 million for municipal grants to support a range of local infrastructure improvements and projects. All cities and towns throughout the Commonwealth can point to local infrastructure that is in need of renovation or repair, making this a critical priority for municipalities.
State Revolving Fund
H. 4336 includes $64 million to support the Massachusetts State Revolving Fund, specifically for the state’s matching funds required to secure federal dollars for the fund, which helps cities and towns improve water supply infrastructure and drinking water safety. This investment will allow municipalities to leverage local, state and federal dollars to maximize the positive impact on our drinking water systems.
Included in the proposal are two housing investments of importance to cities and towns. The first is $60 million for the Housing Stabilization Fund, which provides funding for municipalities, nonprofits, for-profit developers and local housing authorities in support of affordable rental housing production and rehabilitation. Secondly, the bill includes $25 million for Housing Choice grants to municipalities that receive a Housing Choice designation through high housing production and/or demonstration of best practices. As the Commonwealth addresses the ongoing housing crisis, these funds provide important tools for municipalities to address this multifaceted challenge.
Cultural Facilities Fund
H. 4336 provides $50 million to the Cultural Facilities Fund to allocate grants for planning, acquisition, rehabilitation and construction of cultural facilities administered through the Massachusetts Cultural Council and MassDevelopment.
The proposal includes $30 million for the Community Compact IT competitive grant program for innovative technology initiatives at the local level. This program helps drive innovation, creates government efficiencies, saves taxpayer money, and makes it easier for residents to interact with their local government.
Thank you for your continued support for cities and towns. If you have any questions regarding our comments or require additional information, please do not hesitate to have your office contact MMA Senior Legislative Analyst Jackie Lavender Bird at 617-426-7272, ext. 123, or firstname.lastname@example.org at any time.
Geoffrey C. Beckwith
Executive Director & CEO