The Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center is regularly featured in newspapers, on the radio, on blogs, and anywhere reliable information is needed.

In The News

Bay State losing ground as national leader: Editorial

Springfield Republican, May 25, 2015

According to the Annie E. Casey Foundation and the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, 16 percent of children age out of the child welfare system without a permanent family, compared to 10 percent nationally. Seventeen percent are placed in group homes, as opposed to 14 percent nationally, and the state also trails in placing children with relatives.

MA Lags in “Family Placement” for Kids in Child Welfare

Public News Service, May 19, 2015

Noah Berger, president with the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, says there is significant room for improvement when it comes to kinship care. "When a child needs to be taken out of their home, it can often be an advantage for that child to be placed with a grandparent or an aunt," says Berger. "Massachusetts is doing more of that but we still lag behind the national average in terms of how many kids get to those kin placements."

Report: Massachusetts trails in placing foster children with families

Springfield Republican, May 19, 2015

A new report released Tuesday finds that Massachusetts trails the national average when it comes to placing foster children with families.

Senate votes to increase state’s earned income tax credit

Boston Globe, May 19, 2015

An analysis by the left-leaning Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center shows the mix of tax changes approved by the state Senate — freezing the income tax, increasing the earned income tax credit, and bumping up the personal exemptions — would have a relatively modest impact on most taxpayers when compared with the alternative: allowing the state income tax rate to decline, as expected, from 5.15 to 5.1 percent next year under a formula designed to eventually bring the rate down to 5 percent.

Mass. early retirement push: Fears voiced about lack of experienced workers

Worcester Telegram & Gazette, May 16, 2015

Noah Berger, president of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, said the problem is not just the number of qualified people leaving, but the fact they're all leaving at once creating a jolt to the system. "There is a danger of brain drain," Berger said. "If we have four or five thousand people leave rapidly there's a danger that a lot of those people may have skills and expertise that are difficult to replace."

Momentum grows for doubling of earned income credit

Brockton Enterprise, May 10, 2015

“Doubling the state Earned Income Tax Credit could raise incomes of some low-income working families by $900 per year,” said Noah Berger, executive director of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center. “Money could be used for basic necessities such as rent, food and taking care of kids, or it could be used for things like after-school programs.”

Lewis, Berger talk budget at Memorial Hall

Melrose Free Press, May 10, 2015

“If you think of how much income is created in Massachusetts, we have to think about how much of that we’ll spend on state services,” Berger said. “Taxes comes out to about 10 percent of our income. That’s pretty close to the national average. It’s a bit surprising because people think of us as ‘Taxachusetts.’”

Report: Reducing Class Sizes To 15 Could Boost School Achievement

WBUR Learning Lab, May 6, 2015

“What we see in looking at states that have reduced class sizes is that if you do it right — that is if you can get class sizes in the early grades down to about 15 students with well qualified teachers — it can have very significant effect in improving student learning,” Noah Berger, president of MassBudget, said.

State clears way for 5,000 workers to retire early Some fear move may hurt services

Boston Globe, May 5, 2015

Noah Berger, president of the liberal-leaning Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, said early retirement backers hope the state will be able to deliver the same quality of services with fewer people. But, “the question is whether the personnel loss will lead to things like shorter hours at our state pools and longer lines at the Registry” of Motor Vehicles.

Where in Mass. are people most likely to claim workers' tax credit?

Springfield Republican, May 1, 2015

Typically, between 415,000 and 430,000 Massachusetts residents claim the credit each year. The state credit gives a maximum of $936 a year. It applies to families earning up to $52,400 annually for a married couple with three children, with lower income levels for smaller household sizes.

Massachusetts AG Maura Healey files draft regulations to implement Earned Sick Time Law

Springfield Republican, April 27, 2015

It has been estimated by the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, a research group, that 40 percent of workers in Springfield have no earned paid sick leave, with some 54 percent of workers earning less than $35,000 statewide having no earned paid sick leave.

House leaders target education, transportation, local aid

South Coast Today, April 26, 2015

“The House Ways and Means budget proposal has some good news for young children and their families: it provides a small increase for early education and care and it rejects the governor’s proposal to eliminate kindergarten expansion grants,” Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center executive director Noah Berger said in a statement. “Like the governor’s proposal, however, it provides mostly short-term solutions to long-term problems.”

Similarities, and key differences between House, Baker budgets

The Berkshire Eagle, April 15, 2015

Noah Berger, president of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, said he was similarly pleased to see increases in education funding, especially to help move over 800 children off the waiting list for early education programs. Berger, however, said the bill provides only "short-term solutions to long-term problems" by diverting some capital gains taxes away from reserves to support spending and by pushing off major MassHealth expenses into fiscal 2017.

$38 billion budget plan released by Massachusetts House committee

Springfield Republican, April 15, 2015

Noah Berger, president of the liberal-leaning Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, said the proposal "has some good news for young children and their families" through the restoration of money to fund kindergarten expansion grants. But Berger criticized the House committee for adopting a proposal that Baker made to use capital gains tax revenue that would otherwise have gone into the rainy day fund.

Wage growth staggering behind economy’s growth

WWLP News Channel 20, April 14, 2015

TV segment on the minimum wage in Massachusetts, citing MassBudget data.

Rainy day fund taking hits: Is it really raining?

Commonwealth Magazine, April 14, 2015

Noah Berger, president of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, a nonprofit that examines how budget and tax policies affect low and moderate income people, says state officials need to either boost the state’s revenues or cut spending.

House members back film credit: Dispute is their first with Baker

Boston Globe, April 3, 2015

"Lawmakers say there is no organized opposition to the film tax credit to serve as a counterweight to the industry. But they note that Massachusetts think tanks across the ideological spectrum, from the left-leaning Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center to the business-backed Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, have been critical of the program."

Reel trouble: Film industry fights Baker's plan to scrap tax credit

The Salem News, March 31, 2015

"There is no evidence the tax credit can develop a permanent film production industry in the state, one that is not dependent on large tax subsidies to survive,” the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Budget Center, a think tank, said in recent report on the tax subsidy. “What is certain is that the high cost of the tax credit limits our ability to invest in other programs with proven track records to build more broadly-shared prosperity in the state.”

State employee retirement incentive could cause exodus in revenue, welfare, transportation, mental health agencies

Springfield Republican, March 27, 2015

Berger said the loss of auditors at the Department of Revenue would make it harder to identify tax evasion and capture revenue.

Baker’s budget plan shifts Medicaid payments

Boston Globe, March 6, 2015

Noah Berger, president of the left-leaning Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, said he sees in Baker’s budget “a postponement of really addressing the long-term challenges. In Medicaid, we see significant shifting of costs from” the new fiscal year to the one that begins in July 2016. That, he said, “has the positive effect of avoiding painful cuts that could have long-term negative effects on the Commonwealth this year, but mean that we will continue to face real challenges in the years ahead.”

Working under the weather: Boston low-wage laborers beaten down by winter

Al Jazeera America, March 6, 2015

“Over a long period of time, the state has chronically underfunded our public transportation system so that trains get older and older and systems break down when we have bad weather,” said Noah Berger, the executive director of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center.

Proposal to end Massachusetts film tax credit provokes strong reactions

Boston Globe, March 5, 2015

“Increasing the Earned Income Tax Credit is a very good use of those funds. That’s something that directly raises the wages of 400,000 people in Massachusetts,” said Noah Berger, president of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center. “Paying a star’s salary isn’t a very good way of helping the Massachusetts economy.”

Charlie Baker: Massachusetts budget proposal 'right-sizes' government while investing in priorities like transportation

Springfield Republican/MassLive, March 4, 2015

"The budget doesn't make significant new investments in those areas," Berger said. "It doesn't do anything to expand early education and care. It doesn't do anything to make higher education more affordable. Spending on public transportation is way below what everyone knows it would take to fix our public transportation system."

Gov. Baker Proposes Eliminating Film Tax Credit

WBUR, March 4, 2015

“It strengthens the economy because the money that we provide to those low-wage working people they spend right in the local community,” Berger said. “And I think this is a good example of looking at how we’re spending our economic development resources and saying, is there a better way of spending $80 million than subsidizing Hollywood movie producers?”

Gov. Baker Unveils $38B Budget Plan for Mass.

NECN, March 4, 2015

Quote from Noah Berger on NECN

Gov. Baker unveils $38B state budget plan

WCVB Channel 5, March 4, 2015

Quote from Noah Berger on WCVB Channel 5

End Mass. film tax credit

Boston Globe, March 3, 2015

Mass. budget shortfall could hit $1.5 billion

Boston Globe, February 25, 2015

More Accurate Poverty Measure for MA and Nation

Public News Service, February 25, 2015

Welfare reform major test for Rosenberg’s Senate leadership

Daily Hampshire Gazette, February 24, 2015

It’s Time to Address Homelessness

The Daily Free Press, February 20, 2015

Lawmakers consider budget fixes

Boston Globe, February 3, 2015

The other deflategate: our state budget

Boston Globe, January 23, 2015

Analysts expect state budget woes to continue

Boston Herald, January 22, 2015

Baker cites $765 million budget shortfall

Boston Globe, January 20, 2015

Massachusetts feels impact of tax cut

Woburn Advocate, January 11, 2015

Many will benefit from the minimum wage hike

WWLP News Channel 20, January 1, 2015

Minimum wage rising in much of US

Boston Globe, January 1, 2015

Why Have A Longer School Day?

WBUR Learning Lab, December 30, 2014

Drop in income tax will cost state $70M

South Coast Today, December 20, 2014

Study: Mass. not among the worst for taxes

WWLP News Channel 20, December 19, 2014

Survey finds acute homelessness in Boston

Boston Globe, December 11, 2014

Poverty rate study reveals troubling numbers

WWLP News Channel 20, November 13, 2014

Poverty rate in Mass. highest since 1960

Boston Globe, November 10, 2014

Low-wage workers applaud sick-time victory

Boston Globe, November 5, 2014

Question 4: Healthy debate over sick leave

Cape Cod Times, November 2, 2014

A ‘yes’ on Question 4 will help Dorchester

Dorchester Reporter, October 22, 2014

Baker opposes sick-time ballot question

Lowell Sun, September 30, 2014

Many Lack Paid Sick Time

Boston Globe, September 30, 2014

GOP’s Baker proposes earned sick time alternative: 40% of workers in Springfield do not get time off

WWLP News Channel 20, September 29, 2014

TV news story cites findings from MassBudget paper "Earned Paid Sick Time by the Numbers: Regional and Local Access In Massachusetts."

Center Argues for Earned Paid Sick Time

Boston Neighborhood Network News, September 25, 2014

Kerrigan touts pre-K education at St. Agnes

Worcester Telegram & Gazette, September 24, 2014

Worcester’s Emerging Film Industry: Boon or Bust?

Go Local Worcester, September 24, 2014

Child poverty continues to climb in Mass.

Boston Globe, September 22, 2014

Cost of film tax credit: $108,000 per Mass. job

Boston Globe, September 19, 2014

Coakley, GOP exchange jabs on early ed costs

Boston.com, September 16, 2014

Graduated tax rates seen as one strategy for states like Mass.

Boston Globe, September 15, 2014

The article quotes Noah Berger as saying that tax changes over the last 15 years that have benefitted the wealthy, have meant that "the lowest income households — those on living less than $21,000 a year — are paying 9.5 percent of their income toward state and local taxes while those in the top 1 percent — those earning about $700,000 or more — are paying just 6 percent."

New study on 'income inequality' looks at Mass.

Attleboro Sun Chronicle, September 14, 2014

Our Kids in MA Are Alright, But We Can Do Better

Huffington Post, September 9, 2014

State considers new charter schools

Wicked Local Bourne, August 22, 2014

The article says: "A recent panel discussion held in Boston to launch an educational research partnership between the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center and the Rennie Center for Education Research and Policy focused on several topics, including alternative routes to a high school diploma."

Researchers explore diverse approaches to education

Taunton Daily Gazette, August 20, 2014

Noah Berger ... presented data showing that the higher the average level of education is in a state, the higher that state’s wages typically are.

Pricing out state university students

Boston Globe, August 5, 2014

"Even with the nation’s third-highest jump in higher-ed spending from FY 2012 to FY 2014, Massachusetts is still 21 percent below its spending levels of 2001: the $1.2 billion set aside in fiscal 2015 does not come close to the $1.5 billion in 2001 inflation-adjusted dollars."

Report: Mass leads US in child well-being

Bay State Banner, August 2, 2014

Patrick talks child poverty, Shattuck Center

Jamaica Plain Gazette, August 1, 2014

Minimum wage hike to impact one of five workers

Wicked Local Chelmsford, July 29, 2014

Noah Berger is quoted, saying “The largest impact will be in areas where there are more low wage workers, but there are lower-wage workers in most cities and towns in the commonwealth.”

Top Ranking for Massachusetts In Child Well-Being

Public News Service, July 24, 2014

Mass ranked first, N.H. fourth in Kids Count report

Lawrence Eagle Tribune, July 23, 2014

Massachusetts leads rankings in child welfare report

Springfield Republican, July 22, 2014

Study: Massachusetts Kids Better Off Than Most In U.S.

WBZ, July 22, 2014

Radio interview with Noah Berger and print article.

Massachusetts Gets Highest Rank for Children

Boston Neighborhood Network News, July 22, 2014

Central MA Battle Brewing Over Statewide Minimum Wage Increases

Worcester Go Local, July 22, 2014

"Two new studies – one by the Department of Labor and the other by the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center – both have data points suggesting that the minimum wage increases will be beneficial to both Central Massachusetts and the Commonwealth as a whole, saying that increased jobs and sales will both occur as a result of increasing minimum wage from $8 an hour to $11 an hour."

1 in 4 workers in Greater Brockton to be affected by minimum wage hike

Brockton Enterprise, July 16, 2014

The article covers MassBudget's report "The Regional Impact of an $11/Hour Minimum Wage" and describes the extent Brockton's workers will be helped by the increase in minimum wage.

Minimum wage increase will affect cities like Taunton more than others

Taunton Daily Gazette, July 13, 2014

State lawmakers voted last month to raise the minimum wage to U.S.-leading $11 an hour by Jan. 1, 2017, increasing it incrementally from the current $8 minimum wage in Massachusetts. MassBudget's Noah Berger is quoted: "The largest impact will be in areas where there are more low-wage workers, but there are lower-wage workers in most cities and towns in the commonwealth." The article summarizes a MassBudget report "The Regional Impact of an $11/Hour Minimum Wage." Among other findings in the report are that statewide, an estimated 605,000 workers, or 20 percent of the Massachusetts labor force, can expect to see their wages rise.

Massachusetts Becomes Latest State to Raise its Minimum Wage

National Law Review, July 2, 2014

Discusses some details of new Massachusetts minimum wage law. Refers to MassBudget findings that the provision applicable to non-tipped employees alone will affect more than 600,000 workers in Massachusetts (1 out of every 5 workers in the state).

Why A Repealed Casino Law Wouldn’t Affect The Mass. Budget Much

WBUR, July 1, 2014

This radio peice says that even if voters vote down casinos in Massachusetts, the projected loss in revenues that would otherwise be received from casinos may not make much of a dent in the budget. MassBudget's Noah Berger is quoted as saying there are plenty of unpredictable risks in calculating a budget. "You build the budget based on assumptions about economic growth and a number of other factors that affect tax revenue,” he said. “And, if the tax revenue numbers are off by 1 percent in either direction, that’s a significantly larger swing than the casino revenue money."

State lawmakers poised to vote on new budget: More state funds for DCF, antidrug effort in $36.5b plan

Boston Globe, June 30, 2014

State lawmakers are will vote today [Monday, June 30] on a budget that would boost spending on the troubled Department of Children and Families to lighten caseloads for social workers, put new money toward drug addiction treatment, and increase support to cities and towns that have felt the pinch in previous years. MassBudget's Noah Berger called the budget "modest" and said it “makes smart, targeted investments in areas like higher education, strengthening child welfare services and addressing substance abuse prevention and treatment. . . but "is “not a dramatic attempt to address some of our biggest challenges at the scale of those problems.”

Massachusetts Governor Signs Minimum Wage Hike Into Law: Minimum wage rate increases from $8 to $11 an hour by 2017

NACS online, June 30, 2014

Massachusetts is “on course to have the highest minimum wage of any state in the country,” reports the Boston Globe. Last week Governor Deval Patrick signed into law a bill raising the minimum wage incrementally by one dollar a year: $9 on Jan. 1, 2015; $10 on Jan. 1, 2016, and $11 on Jan. 1, 2017. The article quotes MassBudget from the Globe: "Furthermore, the new law isn’t tied to inflation, meaning that as prices for groceries, rent and electricity rise, “workers will fall further behind. … The Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center estimates that by 2017, $11 will be worth $10.32 in today’s dollars.”

State universities, community colleges sound funding alarm

Boston Globe, June 30, 2014

The state budget approved by legislators today will give the University of Massachusetts system enough funding to freeze tuition and fees for a second straight year, but leaders of the state’s nine other public universities and 15 community colleges said their funding allocation is likely to mean higher prices and cuts to programming and staff. The article quotes MasssBudget's Noah Berger as saying that maintaining the affordability that community colleges and state universities provide is important to building the state’s workforce. “Tuition and fee increases are dangerous potentially for the future of the state economy,” Berger is quoted. “More so than many other states, we depend on a well-educated workforce to drive the state economy.”

Local aid increases don’t offset years of cuts

Winchester Wicked local, June 29, 2014

While the House and Senate budget proposals for fiscal year 2015 call for increases to local aid, the additional funding doesn’t offset several years of cuts and level spending. "Local aid is an area of the budget that has been cut the most dramatically since the tax cuts of the 1990s," said Luc Schuster, deputy director of MassBudget.

New commission could rethink Mass. education funding

WorcesterTelegram.com, June 29, 2014

New scrutiny would come from the Foundation Budget Review Commission, which, if a proposed law is enacted, would mandate a far-reaching examination of the Chapter 70 law used to allocate aid to schools. Brian E. Allen, the Worcester school's chief financial and operations officer, provided the data. "The inflation factor does not accurately reflect the true costs of health insurance increases; and also the foundation budget has never accurately captured the true cost of paying for special education services," Mr. Allen said in an interview. He pointed to a 2011 study by the nonprofit Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center that concluded $2.1 billion more is needed statewide to close the gap "between what the foundation budget says districts need for certain cost categories — and what districts are actually spending."

OUR VIEW: Why college costs so much

Bristol (Conn.) Press, June 27, 2014

The article starts as follows:"Many of us were stunned, reading Thursday’s paper, to learn that the cost of attending the University of Connecticut next year will be $24,518. Here in the newsroom, we remember a time when people, including us, went to state schools because they were affordable. That’s not how we see the 6.5 percent tuition hike that the University of Connecticut’s Board of Trustees approved Wednesday. In fact, according to the New York Times, college tuition and fees today are 559 percent of their cost in 1985." The article quotes an article authored in part by Noah Berger: "States can build a strong foundation for economic success and shared prosperity by investing in education. Providing expanded access to high quality education will not only expand economic opportunity for residents, but is also likely do more to strengthen the overall state economy than anything else a state government can do."

Minimum wage increase doesn’t add up to a living wage

Boston Globe, June 26, 2014

The article says that the new minimum wage law -- which pushes the hourly rate in Massachusetts from $8 to $11 dollars over the next few years — gives the state the highest base pay in the nation. But it will still not be enough for some workers to live on. The article notes that MassBudget estimates that by 2017, $11 will be worth $10.32 in today’s dollars.

Minimum Wage Hike Affects Thousands of Berkshire Workers

iBerkshires, June 26, 2014

Gov. Deval Patrick on Thursday, June 26 signed a bill making the state's minimum wage the highest in the nation, raising it from the current $8 to $11 over the next several years. MassBudget is quoted to the effect that the hike will directly affect some 11,000 workers in the greater Pittsfield area and indirectly another 2,600, or about 27 percent of wage earners. According to MassBudget: "According to MassBudget, more than 600,000 workers are at minimum wage, and more than 85 percent of those are age 20 and older. More than half are women and 140,000 are parents.

Massachusetts maxes out on minimum wage, but is $11 enough?

Commonwealth Magazine, June 24, 2014

The article concerns itself with the lack of indexing for inflation in the new law raising the minimum wage. It refers to a new policy brief in which MassBudget concludes that the increase will have a significant impact in regions of the state where there are large numbers of low-wage workers, such as outside Boston.

Massachusetts minimum wage raised to $11 by 2017

Wicked Local Chelmsford, June 23, 2014

The Massachusetts Legislature has voted to boost the state’s minimum wage to $11 per hour by 2017, increasing it by $1 dollar per year starting in 2015. The article says: "According to the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, the increase to $11 per hour will benefit roughly 600,000 workers, over 85% of whom are above the age of twenty. Nearly one in four is a parent."

Vote to raise minimum wage 'a step forward,' Waltham legislator says

Wicked Local Waltham, June 23, 2014

The Massachusetts Legislature has voted to boost the state’s minimum wage to $11 per hour by 2017, increasing it by $1 dollar per year starting in 2015. According to MassBudget, the increase to $11 per hour will benefit roughly 600,000 workers, over 85 percent of whom are above the age of 20. Nearly one in four is a parent.

Local aid gets boost

Wicked Local Concord, June 20, 2014

The article says that while the House and Senate budget proposals for fiscal 2015 call for increases to local aid, the additional funding doesn’t offset several years of cuts and level spending. In particlular, it quotes MassBudget's Deputy Director, Luc Schuster: "Local aid is an area of the budget that has been cut the most dramatically since the tax cuts of the 1990s."

Lawmakers, advocates focus on DCF improvements

Boston Globe, June 19, 2014

The article concerns the recent difficulties facing the Department of Children and Families. The article includes a MassBudget chart showing the decline over the last several years in funding for the Department.

State’s taxpayer advocate sums up without division

Boston Globe, June 14, 2014

The article extols Michael Widmer, retiring President of Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, and points out his support for educational programs in Massachusetts. MassBudget's Noah Berger, although often at odds with the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, is quoted as saying that Widmer “consistently steers our public debates away from divisiveness and toward a spirit of working together toward a positive vision of the common good.”

Officials appeal to moral obligation in poverty fight

Fitchburg Sentinel and Enterprise, June 14, 2014

The article discusses a conference about poverty in north central Massachusetts. It mentions that Noah Berger spoke about the benign effect of the recent raise in the minimum wage.

Mass. poised to be pacesetter for minimum wage

Boston Globe, June 13, 2014

The Massachusetts Senate has voted overwhelmingly to increase the minimum wage from $8 to $11 per hour by 2017. The House of Representatives is expected to approve the legislation next week, and Governor Deval Patrick has said he will sign it. The article quotes Noah Berger as saying; “Establishing an $11 per hour minimum wage will raise the wages of a half-million people in Massachusetts, which will be very important to those working people and their families and will also have a positive impact on the state economy.”

Local aid increases don't offset years of decreases

Wicked Local Fall River, June 11, 2014

The House and Senate budget proposals for fiscal 2015 call for increases to local aid, but the additional funds don’t offset several years of cuts and level spending. MassBudget's Luc Schuster is quoted as saying: “Local aid is an area of the budget that has been cut the most dramatically since the tax cuts of the 1990s.”

In school budget woes, state bears brunt of blame

Newburyport Daily News, June 2, 2014

Article deals with who is to blame for escalating costs in the public schools. The article says: "As the financial watchdog organization Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center has pointed out, the state’s spending on local aid, which includes our public schools, is 46 percent below what it was in 2001, when adjusted for inflation. That is an enormous sum of money."

Bridgewater State Hospital slow to embrace change

Boston Globe, June 1, 2014

The article says that Bridgewater resisted trend to more humane ways and that harsh handling of mentally ill increased. MassBudget is cited for the proposition that Massachusetts has actually cut its mental health care budget by $100 million, or more than 12 percent, since 2001, adjusting the figure for inflation.

Tax cuts that continue to haunt Mass

Boston Globe - Op-Ed, February 12, 2013

Tax policy debates are about how we pay for the things we do together for our communities, our families, and our economy. Working together through government allows us to accomplish things that are vital to us as a Commonwealth and that we can't do alone...About 15 years ago, at the height of the dot-com bubble, our state made tax policy choices that have shaped state policy ever since...The state enacted a series of cuts to the income tax that are now costing us close to $3 billion a year. We cut the tax rate on most income from 5.95 percent to 5.3 percent, costing over $1.5 billion. We cut the tax rate on dividends and interest from 12 percent to 5.3 percent, costing about $850 million. We increased the personal deduction to $4,400, costing $550 million.

Look at what the state is doing right

Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, January 23, 2011

WITH THE governor scheduled to file his budget proposal for the coming year on Wednesday, and the Commonwealth facing a budget gap of close to $2 billion, knowing that our government provides services as efficiently as possible will be more important than ever.