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

Universal pre-K in Massachusetts would cost $1.5 billion

WickedLocal - Acton, April 19, 2014

Discusses costs of universal pro-kindergarten in Massachusetts, and MassBudget's report on the issue. Quote from the article: State Rep. Alice Peisch, D-Wellesley, the House chair of the Joint Committee of Education, agreed that Massachusetts should work to increase early education access and quality. "The Mass Budget and Policy Center’s report on early education was informative," she said. "It is clear that Massachusetts has work to do in the field of early education and care and this report can help guide us. Early education and care is the foundation of our children’s success and we must find a way to not only open up access, but increase quality as well." [Noah] Berger [MassBudget's President] said he hopes the report will help shape policy discussions. "I think both policymakers and advocators who care about these issues can benefit from a report that lays out what the current circumstances are and provides some options or pathways to expand access, as well as lay out some evidence of value," Berger said. "The evidence out there is pretty strong that access to early education and care makes a difference in kids’ ability to do well in school."

Taunton State Hospital budget amendment among 1,175 filed by Mass. House members

Taunton Daily Gazette, April 18, 2014

Discussion of amendments to April 9 $36.5 million House Ways and Means Committee budget. Quote from article: Noah Berger, director of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, predicted there will be considerable debate on issues such as youth jobs funding when the House takes up the budget the week of April 28. He doesn’t anticipate much discussion on new revenues. “The broader context is we are still in very difficult budget times,” Berger said. “We don’t have budget surpluses. We actually have ongoing budget gaps. We are still crawling our of worst economic recession since the Great Depression.”

Interview with Noah Berger

980 WCAP , April 16, 2014

Discussion of business taxes in Massachusetts, which rank 30th or 40th in the country (depending how they are measured), and Massachusetts businesses' need for an educated workforce

Rallying tax rage

Cape Cod Times, April 13, 2014

"As much as we all love to complain about paying taxes, how many of us really know where and how tax money is spent? "For a little perspective (as my mother always said was important), the two nonpartisan organizations I like to refer to every year during tax filing season — the deadline for which is Tuesday — are the Massachusetts-based National Priorities Project and the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center (MassBudget)." Quotes Noah Berger, MasssBudget's president, extensively on how high Massachusetts taxes, including business taxes, are, especially as compared to other states.

If Massachusetts were a country, how rich would it be?

Boston Globe, Twitter @GlobeHorowitz, April 10, 2014

"What if Massachusetts were a country, rather than a state? How would this Imaginary Republic of Massachusetts stack up against the nations of the world? Would it be a rich country, or a poor one? A nation of great inequality or shared prosperity? A beacon of multicultural harmony or an especially segregated society?" The article finds, among other surprising facts, that Massachusetts is very rich, in fact fourth after Norway, Luxembourg, and Singapore and ahead of Switzerland, the US (as a whole), and Hong Kong

House leaders propose

Fall River Herald News, April 9, 2014

The House proposal calls for $25.5 million in additional unrestricted local aid for cities and towns and $100 million in additional Chapter 70 education funding. "Noah Berger, director of the Massachusetts Budget Policy Center, said the budget proposal “takes some small steps” forward, but could do more had the House chosen to introduce new revenue streams. “What this budget doesn't do is present a strong, long-term vision for expanding opportunity and strengthening our economy by providing significant new support for things like workforce training, early education and other investments in our people,” he said."

Affordable pre-K programs would cost state $1.5B

WWLP Channel 22 (Springfield) News, April 8, 2014

TV newsclip, covering Massbudget's new report Building a Foundation for Success, says that kids 3 & 4yrs old either receive no early education or pay full price for private schooling. The report found that expanding affordable access for all eligible children to pre-kindergarten education would cost the state $1.5 billion

What you need to know about tomorrow’s budget proposal

Boston Globe, Twitter @GlobeHorowitz, April 8, 2014

Describes the rudiments of the budget process in Massachusetts, concentrating on the House Ways and Means Committee budget, to be issued April 9, 2014. Includes data from Massbudget

Many families get no help to pay for early education cost

Boston Globe, April 7, 2014

About 19,000 children age 3 and 4 from low-income Massachusetts families, who probably cannot afford early education programs, do not get public assistance for preschool or prekindergarten, according to a new report from a budget research group. These children come from families in poverty or whose incomes fall below most basic cost-of-living thresholds — about $40,000 for a family of three, the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center study found, adding to the long-simmering debate about expanding school access for young children .

FAQ: The Minimum Wage In Mass.

WBUR, April 1, 2014

Answers various questions about the minimum wage in Massachusetts, and features information from MassBudget.

Businesses seek tax break to balance wage hike

Boston Globe, March 31, 2014

The article says that many Massachusetts businesses have backed off their longstanding opposition to raising the state’s minimum wage if, in return, lawmakers drop a planned increase in the unemployment insurance taxes that businesses pay. According to the article, business leaders say this “balanced approach” would probably win many employers’ tacit support for raising the pay of the lowest-paid workers. The article quotes John Regan, a lobbyist for Associated Industries of Massachusetts, a trade group. According to the article, businesses have mounted an aggressive campaign to persuade legislators to stop an average 30 percent increase in the unemployment tax from taking effect at the end of May. If that increase is canceled, businesses would avoid paying an average of $240 a year more for every worker they employ. Several states are considering increases through legislation or voter initiatives, including Massachusetts, where a proposal to raise the minimum wage to $10.50 an hour from $8 by 2016 appears headed to the November ballot. The Massachusetts House and Senate are each considering a minimum-wage increase, but differ on whether it should rise to $10.50 or $11 an hour over three years and whether to automatically increase it at the rate of inflation in subsequent years. The article mentions information provided by Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center and quotes Representative Tom Conroy, a Wayland Democrat.

Report: ‘Taxachusetts’ has lower business tax burden than New Hampshire

New Hampshire Business Review, March 31, 2014

Massachusetts – often scornfully referred to as “Taxachusetts” – actually has a lower business tax burden than most states, including New Hampshire, according to the data used in a recent report by the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center.

Report: ‘Taxachusetts’ has lower business tax burden than New Hampshire

New Hampshire Business Review, March 31, 2014

Report says that Massachusetts – often scornfully referred to as “Taxachusetts” – actually has a lower business tax burden than most states, including New Hampshire, according to the data used in a recent report by the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center.

Taxachusetts no more: New tax study shows state is business friendly

The Enterprise, March 29, 2014

A new analysis by the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center says the state ranks 40th for overall business taxes, and is second lowest in New England

‘Taxachusetts’ is a misnomer, at least for now

Boston Globe, March 28, 2014

Massachusetts is not, in fact, “Taxachusetts.” Rather, the Bay State is right in the middle, neither high nor low, imposing less of a burden on its citizens than certain other states filled with anti-tax braggadocio (ahem, that would be you, New Hampshire). But “Taxachusetts” is also less about reality than it is a state of mind. We may not tax heavily now, but we used to — and if certain folks had their druthers, we would once again. The financial website WalletHub just released its ranking of the best and worst states to be a taxpayer. On top was Wyoming (with average annual taxes of $2,365) while Massachusetts ($6,884) came in at 21. Some states with greater tax burdens defy stereotypes. South Carolina, for example, was 23rd, Georgia 26th, and the aforementioned Granite State was 28th ($7,419). That seems a puzzle. With no sales or income taxes, how can New Hampshire be worse off than Massachusetts? Continue reading below ▼ Because politicians are crafty people. New Hampshire crows about the taxes it doesn’t have even as it finds other ways to reach into pocketbooks; its property taxes, for example, are among the highest in the nation. In fact, the myth of Taxachusetts has been widely reported. The Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center observes the Bay State takes 10.4 percent of its citizens’ incomes as taxes, less than the US average of 10.6 percent. The nonpartisan StateMaster looked at taxes as a percent of GDP and ranked Massachusetts right in the middle, at 25. The Tax Foundation notes that, when it comes to taxes, Massachusetts is a “beacon of moderation.”

Should MA raise minimum wage?

NECN, March 23, 2014

Noah Berger, President of Massachusetts Budget and Policy, and Jon Hurst, President of Retailers Association of Massachusetts, debate about raising the minimum wage.

Lift the employment floor [Op-Ed]

Berkshire Eagle, March 10, 2014

For a hundred years Massachusetts has been setting minimum wage rates. Today, however, that wage, at $8 an hour, is worth 25 percent less than it was in 1968. Adjusting for inflation, a full-time minimum wage worker made $21,000 a year in 1968. Today that worker makes just $16,000. That decline has contributed to growing inequality and to a declining standard of living for lower wage working people - even as our economy continues to grow.

Albelda and Berger: Raising minimum wage raises quality of life

Patriot Ledger, March 8, 2014

State economic policy should aim to make life better for regular people. That means everyone who works for a living should be able to make a living – not just scraping by, but a living with security and the ability to raise children and save for the future. For the past several decades, our national economy and policy-makers have not achieved these goals. Workers did their part. American productivity has doubled. But the resulting prosperity has not been broadly shared. Incomes have increased dramatically for the very wealthy, while wages for folks in the middle have barely budged – and our lowest-wage workers have seen the value of their wages decline. For a hundred years, Massachusetts has been setting minimum-wage rates. Today, however, that wage, at $8 an hour, is worth 25 percent less than it was in 1968. Adjusting for inflation, a full-time minimum-wage worker made $21,000 a year in 1968. Today that worker makes just $16,000. That decline has contributed to growing inequality and to a declining standard of living for lower-wage working people – even as our economy continues to grow.

For $1 per Big Mac, a truly livable salary for millions

Boston Globe, February 18, 2014

Because the value of the minimum wage hasn't kept pace with inflation, a full-time minimum wage worker now makes the equivalent of $5,400 a year less than in 1968, according to the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center.

Tipping system exacerbates unfair pay at restaurants

Boston Globe, February 17, 2014

Massachusetts, which often prides itself on its progressive values, is a laggard in protecting restaurant workers. Its current tipped minimum wage is worth just one-third of the regular minimum wage, and is lower than the tipped wage in 27 other states, including all other New England states, according to the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center.

Minimum wage increase: Dignity, or job killer?

The Enterprise, February 11, 2014

The increase in wages would give the workers more spending power, stimulate the economy and create more jobs, the budget and policy center argued in a 2012 report.

Commentary: Raising minimum wage is economic justice

Wicked Local Arlington, February 11, 2014

The main critique of a minimum wage increase is that it has a negative effect on job growth. The Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, however, notes that increasing the minimum wage has historically had negligible effects on job growth.

Warren pushes minimum wage hike in Boston visit

Boston Globe, February 10, 2014

Senator Elizabeth Warren and Senator Richard Durbin of Illinois listened as Noah Berger, president of the Massachusetts Budget Policy Center, spoke during a minimum wage roundtable discussion at a Boloco location on Congress Street.

Durbin unsure about minimum wage hike’s odds in Senate

22WWLP.com (via State House News), February 10, 2014

Noah Berger, president of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, said 500,000 Massachusetts workers would benefit from an increase in the minimum wage.

Agency saw program improvements despite cuts

The Recorder, February 1, 2014

Berger, president of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, said that there is a direct correlation between having a well-educated state and having a higher median wage. He said that Massachusetts has the highest percentage of workers with at least a bachelor’s degree (about 45 percent) and the third-highest median salary (about $19 an hour). There’s still room for growth, he said. "If we can make sure all our kids are getting the support they need, from their earliest days, to be successful, we’ll have a dramatically different economy 20 years from now," he said.

Will a Minimum Wage Hike Hurt or Help Worcester’s Economy?

GoLocalWorcester.com, January 30, 2014

"Both proposals would raise the wages of about half a million minimum-wage workers," said Noah Berger, president of the Boston-based Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center. He said the increase would also restore the real value of the minimum wage to about what it was in 1968. "That decline in the minimum wage has contributed to increasing income inequality and a decline in quality of life."

Did budget let down Jeremiah Oliver?

Worcester Telegram & Gazette, January 24, 2014

Pointing to Mass Budget & Policy Center data, children's advocates noted that adjusting for inflation, the state budgeted approximately $336 million for children and family services in fiscal 2009, while the 2015 budget provides $310 million for comparable services.

AIDS Action, MassCreative & MassBudget React to Gov. Patrick’s Budget

The Rainbow Times, January 23, 2014

Noah Berger, President of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, also responded to the Governor’s budget proposal for FY 2015..."This budget sets smart priorities—including targeted investments in education, some innovative reforms in criminal justice, and a commitment to fiscal responsibility—but there is a lot of work still to be done to create an economy that can deliver broadly shared prosperity. Without significant new tax revenue the Governor is not able to make the kinds of investments that could really strengthen our economy in the long run by ensuring that all of our young people get the support they need to reach their full potential."

Gov unveils no-surprises $36.4B state budget

22 WWLP.Com, January 23, 2014

"Without significant new tax revenue, you really can't make the kinds of investments that would strengthen our economy in the long term," said Massachusetts Budget & Policy Center President Noah Berger.

Patrick budget puts focus on education, transportation

Boston Globe, January 22, 2014

Noah Berger, president of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center...said Patrick's focus on education and transit is commendable but his ability to make a lasting impact in those areas is limited since he chose not to push for larger tax increases in this budget..."The governor called it a sensible budget, which I think is somewhat accurate," Berger said. "But without significant new tax revenue, you really can't make the kind of investments that would strengthen our economy in the long-term..."

Gov. Deval Patrick's $36.4 billion budget increases education funding, level funds aid to cities and towns

MassLive (Springfield Republican), January 22, 2014

Meanwhile, Noah Berger, president of Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, a research group focusing on policies affecting low and middle income individuals, criticized Patrick for the lack of new revenue. "Without significant new revenue, it's not able to make the kind of investments that in the long term could really strengthen the economy by making sure all of our kids get the quality of education they need and the support that will enable people to develop into the most effective workers and to contribute to a really strong economy in the Commonwealth in the long term," Berger said.

Budget group predicts $514M structural deficit for state in '15

Boston Business Journal, January 15, 2014

Massachusetts is expected to face a $514 million structural budget gap in the upcoming fiscal year, the sixth-consecutive year in which the cost of maintaining current services will exceed ongoing revenue collections, according to the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center.

DeLeo resists call to divorce minimum wage from insurance system changes

Wicked Local, January 14, 2014

Coakley said raising the minimum wage would help families and the overall economy, citing a report by the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center that $1.5 billion in new wages generated by a $3 increase in the minimum wage would be spent in the local economy.

Coakley and Baker engage on minimum wage

Sentinal & Enterprise (via State House News), January 13, 2014

Coakley said raising the $8 an hour minimum wage would not only help families but the overall economy, citing a report by the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center that $1.5 billion in new wages generated by a $3 increase in the minimum wage would be spent in the local economy.

Massachusetts State Debt Among Highest in US

GoLocalWorcester.com, January 10, 2014

"While it is important to keep debt at a reasonable level, state policy should also reflect the fact that a state can strengthen its economy by borrowing to make smart investments in, for example, high quality transportation infrastructure – just as it is important for state budgets to invest in the education and skills of people to increase the productivity of the state economy...The importance of long-term economic strength should always be considered as part of any discussion about debt," Noah Berger concluded.

MA Residents Face Among Highest Transportation Costs in US

GoLocalWorcester.com, January 9, 2014

The Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center calculated last year that had the state indexed the gas tax for inflation in 1991 (the last year the excise tax changed), the rate would be 36 cents per gallon today...That center acknowledged a greater impact on low and moderate income households by indexing the tax, but cited other beneficial effects, including curbing consumption.

Mass. Losing Ground on Economic Opportunity

Boston Neighborhood News, January 9, 2014

A new report shows a widening gap in earnings for Massachusetts, despite a relatively high median income. Interview for BNN News with Noah Berger, Executive Director of the Mass. Budget and Policy Center.

Polls: public confidence in government down

Bay State Banner, January 8, 2014

Noah Berger, president of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, said that it is important that people distinguish between the actions of certain elected officials and the government in general and he worries that the numbers that show low trust in the government are impacted by those not making this distinction. "I think when you think about government it is important to keep in mind that government is not just those politicians in Washington, it is how we work together to do important things," Berger said.

The economy, especially in the Attleboro area, appears poised for growth in 2014

Sun Chronicle, January 5, 2014

Noah Berger, president of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, said it remains to be seen whether improved business and economic conditions will filter down to workers. "The challenge is whether those improvements will turn into the hiring of local people," Berger said. "Since World War II up to the 1970s, we saw conditions where every time the economy improved, wages and employment improved as well. But over the past 30 years, the economy has kept on expanding but wage growth has remained slow."

A portrait of poverty: Demographic study reveals spike in poverty-level Cape Codders

Wicked Local Chatham, December 27, 2013

The Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center projected raising the state minimum wage by that amount would directly or indirectly benefit 18,700 workers on the Cape and Islands. That's 22 percent of the Mid Cape work force, and 16 percent of workers in the rest of the Cape and Island.

Minimum wage debate a battle of ideologies

Worcester Telegram & Gazette, December 15, 2013

According to the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center...the value of the state's minimum wage rate, based on increases in the cost of living, has declined by 25 percent since its peak in 1968, when it was at $10.72 in today's dollars...A minimum-wage worker in Massachusetts today earns $16,000 per year, which is right on the poverty line for a family of two, and $5,400 less than he or she would earn at the 1968 value.

Waltham's senator votes with majority to boost minimum wage

Wicked Local Waltham, December 10, 2013

According to the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, 485,000 workers would directly benefit from a bump to $11 per hour by 2016.

Inequality Hits People Hardest At Worst Possible Moment, In 1 Chart

Huffington Post, December 9, 2013

According to The Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, "incomes for the highest income families in Massachusetts have grown almost five times as fast as those for low-income families and nearly twice as fast as those for middle-income families," over the past two decades. According to the organization, the inequality gap has increased more during this time in Massachusetts than in 47 of the other states.

Property-tax bills climbing across region

Lowell Sun, December 8, 2013

"In a way, it's a shift from one tax to another," said Noah Berger, president of the nonpartisan Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center...According to the center, state local aid has fallen by 46 percent from fiscal 2001 to 2012. Early-education funding has dropped 28 percent, and general education aid known as Chapter 70 funds is down by 8 percent

Local faith groups join statewide push for minimum wage, sick time on the ballot

Enterprise, December 5, 2013

In Brockton, one of four workers makes $10 or less per hour, compared to one in five statewide, according to the Brockton Interfaith Community, according to according to the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, a nonpartisan research group...In the greater Brockton workforce, 22 percent or 11,500 people, would be directly or indirectly affected by the proposed change to the state minimum wage. Only greater Lowell, Springfield and greater New Bedford would have a higher percentage of workers who would be affected according to their analysis.

Community colleges try to control costs

Wicked Local Lexington, December 2, 2013

According to an October 2013 report from the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, the state reduced higher education spending by $366.1 million, 25 percent, between fiscal 2001 and 2013. However in fiscal 2014, the state increased spending by $86.6 million.

Minimum wage proposal gets mixed reviews

Wicked Local Lincoln, December 1, 2013

According to a study by the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, about 8,600 workers in the Framingham and Natick area would be affected if the minimum wage increased to $10.50 by 2016, a figure based on a proposed ballot initiative. That is 17 percent of the total number of workers in the area.

Arguments around raising state's minimum wage

Sun Chronicle, November 29, 2013

Noah Berger, director of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, said paying workers more will pump up the local economy because the workers will have more money to spend..."It puts more money in the pockets of consumers," he said.

Community colleges try to control costs

Wicked Local Chelmsford, November 27, 2013

According to an October 2013 report from the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, the state reduced higher education spending by $366.1 million, 25 percent, between fiscal 2001 and 2013. However in fiscal 2014, the state increased spending by $86.6 million.

Screening children for mental health issues may not guarantee care

Boston Globe, November 25, 2013

Six years after the state launched an unprecedented effort to address the mental and developmental needs of young children, doctors in Massachusetts are screening more children for behavioral health concerns than any other state...Nearly 7 in 10 Massachusetts children under age 6 in low-income families were screened in 2011 and 2012 — more than twice the rate in the United States as a whole, according to data released this month by the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center as part of the national Kids Count report.

Student-loan debt a concern for Sen. Donoghue, others

Lowell Sun, November 25, 2013

Funding to Massachusetts state colleges and universities has plunged over the past decade, but this year, the Legislature appropriated $1.1 billion in funding, allowing state universities to freeze tuition and fees. The funding saw an increase of 8.3 percent from fiscal 2013, adjusted for inflation, according to the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center.

Are Mass. children getting the behavioral and mental health care they need?

Boston.com, November 24, 2013

Nearly 7 in 10 Massachusetts children under age 6 in low-income families were screened in 2011 and 2012--more than twice the rate of screening in the United States as a whole, according to data released this month by the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center as part of the national Kids Count report.

How Much? MV High School Budget Goes Public Monday Night

Martha's Vineyard Patch, November 24, 2013

According to the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center (MassBudget), the majority of funding for public schools in the Bay State--53.8 percent in 2010--comes from local property taxes, making us seventh in the nation for local funding of schools. (Connecticut is #1, with taxpayers furnishing 57.5 percent of the money for public schools.) The state chipped in 38.8 percent of Massachusetts public school funding in 2010 and the federal government pitched 7.4 percent into the budget pot, according to MassBudget.

Time is right for a boost to state’s minimum wage

Boston Globe, November 22, 2013

Because the value of the minimum wage hasn’t kept pace with inflation, a full-time minimum wage worker now makes $5,000 a year less than in 1968, according to the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center. The Senate bill would restore the minimum wage to the purchasing power it would have if inflation were factored in...As the center also points out, many people wrongly associate minimum-wage work primarily with teenage workers. In fact, about 73 percent are age 20 or older.

O'Brien didn't do it all alone

Worcester Telegram & Gazette, November 22, 2013

Although median household income grew from $35,623 to $45,846 during Mr. O'Brien's tenure, the median value of a house went from about $119,600 to $234,400. Meanwhile, the number of Worcester residents living below the poverty level went from 17.9 percent in 1999 to 19 percent today.

DeLeo wary of minimum wage hike for Mass.

Boston Globe, November 20, 2013

Supporters say the Senate bill would boost the pay for 485,000 workers who currently earn between $8 and $11 an hour. Another 104,000 workers who earn between $11 and $12 an hour would see their pay rise as a result of a ripple effect from the higher minimum..."While our economy has become increasingly productive, wages for middle- and low-income workers have been stagnant and the value of the minimum wage has declined,” Noah Berger, president of the center, said in a statement. “When too many of our working people don’t make enough to pay for basic necessities, it hurts those workers and their families—and the reduced demand for goods and services harms local businesses, as well."

Massachusetts Senate overwhelmingly approves minimum wage increase to $11 an hour

MassLive (Springfield Republican), November 20, 2013

According to a study by the nonpartisan Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center in Boston, 17,800 workers in Springfield would be affected if the minimum wage goes to $10.50 an hour, with 14,600 workers currently receiving less than $10.50 an hour and 3,200 earning just above that...Statewide, if the wage rises to $10.50, 495,000 workers would be affected, including 440,000 because they earn less than that.

Tipped workers wage hike included in minimum wage bill

South Coast Today, November 20, 2013

Noah Berger, president of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, which supports the increase, said several states pay tipped workers 100 percent of the regular minimum wage..."We hear these horror stories about (raising the minimum wage), but in California tipped workers get full minimum wage, and restaurants still do well in California," he said...Poverty also goes down when the minimum wage of tip workers is raised, Berger added, claiming 16 percent of tip workers in the states with the lowest minimum wages are under the poverty line, while that drops to 12 percent in states that pay tip workers the regular minimum wage.

Noah Berger Discusses Minimum Wage on WGBH

WGBH, Greater Boston, November 20, 2013

Senate passes wage bill

Sentinel & Enterprise, November 20, 2013

According to its data, 9,400 workers in Fitchburg and Leominster would benefit directly by a minimum wage increase to $10.50 per hour. "What citizens need most right now are consumers to spend money in their stores, that can help their local businesses," said Noah Berger, the center's president.

State Senate votes: These wages should go to $11

Boston Business Journal, November 20, 2013

According to a study by the nonpartisan Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center in Boston, 17,800 workers in Springfield would be affected if the minimum wage goes to $10.50 an hour, with 14,600 workers currently receiving less than $10.50 an hour and 3,200 earning just above that. Statewide, if the wage rises to $10.50, 495,000 workers would be affected, including 440,000 because they earn less than that.

Massachusetts Senate Overwhelmingly Opts for Minimum Wage Increase

BostInno, November 20, 2013

According to the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center 589,000 Bay Staters would see an increase in their pay come 2016 and those in the retail industry would be most affected. In that same respect, the retail industry is the bill's largest opponent.

Local reps say proposed increase in minimum wage too much for small businesses to bear

Sun Chronicle, November 20, 2013

The Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center estimates that 589,000 workers in Massachusetts would get a pay raise from a higher minimum wage, including 10,600 in Attleboro. About 88 percent of those affected are age 20 or older and are mostly concentrated in poorer cities, according to the center.

Pols push procrastination on wage hike

Boston Herald, November 19, 2013

About 94,000 Massachusetts workers make the minimum, according to the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center. It lists 27 percent of minimum-wage earners as teens and 
73 percent as older than 20. Women make up 60 percent of minimum-wage earners, and only 20 percent overall are parents. Proponents say the pay hike is necessary to pay families a living wage. Opponents say it will lead to job cuts, hitting teens hard.

Minimum-wage hike a matter of fairness

itemlive.com, November 18, 2013

According to the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center (MBPC), a full-time minimum wage worker today earns $16,000 per year. When adjusted for inflation, that is $5,000 less than what the same worker would have earned in 1968..."The minimum wage hasn't kept pace with inflation," said MBPC President Noah Berger. "When too many of our working people don't make enough to pay for basic necessities, it hurts those workers and their families - and the reduced demand for goods and services harms local businesses as well."

Op-Ed: Higher Learning, Lower Funding

Bay State Banner, October 30, 2013

Recently, the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center released a paper entitled "Higher Learning, Lower Funding: The Decline in Support for Higher Education in Massachusetts." The paper analyzes trends in state funding for higher education over time, compares public higher education spending to other states, and identifies where Massachusetts students come from and where they go after graduation.

Sound Bite: Higher Education Funding in Massachusetts

Bill Newman Show - WHMP-AM, October 30, 2013

MassBudget president Noah Berger discusses public higher education funding in Massachusetts and the value of a well-educated workforce.

Minimum wage boost in Massachusetts eyed by DeLeo as business relief effort

The Greenfield Recorder (via State House News), October 29, 2013

In Massachusetts, there are nearly half a million workers who earn the $8 an hour minimum wage or very close to it. Approximately 94,000 people earn the minimum wage and around 398,000 earn between $8.25 to $11 per hour, according to the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, which estimated 73 percent of minimum wage earners are 20 years old or older.

Young job seekers struggling in a sputtering economy

Sun Chronicle, October 26, 2013

The recession played havoc with states' job training and youth employment programs that have only recently begun to return pre-2007 funding levels, said Luc Schuster, deputy director of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center...State support for higher education remains about 25 percent lower than 2001 when adjusted for inflation, Schuster said.

Push renewed for forced mental treatment

Boston Globe, October 22, 2013

Since 2001, state leaders have reduced the state mental health care budget by nearly $100 million, or more than 12 percent, according to the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, a nonprofit, nonpartisan group that adjusted the figures for inflation.

What about the lost tech tax income?

Boston Globe, October 20, 2013

After the tech tax repeal, Noah Berger, president of the liberal-leaning Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, issued a report warning about its long-term consequences...The report also points out that while increases in gas and cigarette taxes "may be good for public health and for the environment, they are also taxes that generally require lower-income people to pay a larger share of their income than higher-income people."

Lawmakers Consider Update of School Foundation Budgets

Sentinal & Enterprise (via State House News), October 18, 2013

Luc Schuster, deputy director of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, said during the first decade of Education Reform, the state followed through on its commitment to Chapter 70 funding. It doubled from approximately $2.5 billion in 1993 to nearly $5 billion by 2003. It was a different story during the second decade, he said, with Chapter 70 funds cut $600 million since 2002.

Home prices heading up, while pay still down

Boston Globe, October 5, 2013

Despite a slight increase in 2012, median family income in Massachusetts remains 5.4 percent below what it was before the downturn, the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center reports.

Median income down since pre-recession, poverty up since 2007

Wicked Local Wareham (via State House News), September 17, 2013

In a statement following the release of the data, Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center President Noah Berger said government should work to address the income and poverty numbers by rebuilding infrastructure, investing in schools, and raising the minimum wage.

An educated work force is a thriving one

Orlando Sentinel, September 15, 2013

For example, in 22 states where fewer than 30 percent of workers hold bachelor's degrees, median pay is typically about $15 an hour. But in the three states where 40 percent or more of residents have at least a bachelor's degree, median wages are about $20 an hour...That $5 an hour bump is a big deal, say authors Noah Berger and Peter Fisher. It's the difference between making $41,000 a year and $31,000 a year.

In a reversal, DeLeo and Murray back repeal of computer services tax

Boston.com, September 12, 2013

Liberal watchdog groups said diverting surplus money to plug the gap created by the repeal of the tax will only paper over the problem...Noah Berger, president of the left-leaning Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, called it “a temporary solution to a permanent problem.” “We have long-term needs in transportation and education, and to try to patch over those needs with one-time solutions doesn’t solve the problem,” Berger said.

Mass. Gov. Patrick open to repeal of 'tech tax'

Boston Herald, September 11, 2013

Gov. Deval Patrick said Wednesday that he was open to repealing an unpopular new tax on computer and software services...Noah Berger, president of the independent Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, said the state could consider abolishing some of the hundreds of millions in annual tax breaks offered to private companies as one means for recouping any lost revenue.

Egerman and Berger: Education is the path to prosperity

Op-Ed MetroWest Daily News, September 8, 2013

Better educated states have higher wage economies—and the wage differences between better educated states and less well educated states are substantial.

Op-Ed: Educated workforce key to high wages

CommonWealth Magazine, September 4, 2013

When we look at data from across the country, two clear conclusions emerge: there is no correlation between the overall level of taxation in a state and the ability of the economy to support high-wage jobs; There is a very strong correlation between how well-educated a state workforce is and the ability of the economy to support high wage jobs.

Despite increase in productivity, Mass. workers still make the same

BU Daily Free Press, September 4, 2013

"Back in post-war years when productivity went up, wages went up right along with it, but that changed in the 1980s," said MassBudget President Noah Berger. "There has been wage growth, but it’s been mostly among the people at the very high end of the income distribution. It's gone up pretty dramatically, but those in the middle have seen very little growth."

A Labor Day look at how workers are faring

Wicked Local Avon, September 2, 2013

Even as the Massachusetts economy grows more productive, workers continue to find that their wages don't reflect these productivity gains....The Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, a nonpartisan research group, offers a snapshot of the economic situation for workers on this Labor Day, including information on wages, job growth and inequality.

Report: Productivity soars but wages lag in Mass

MetroWest Daily News, August 31, 2013

As the day to honor those who labor approaches, a research center has released a report showing that productivity is increasing but wages are not keeping pace. "Even as the Massachusetts economy grows more productive, workers continue to find that their wages don't reflect these productivity gains," the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center report says.

What’s a real living wage in Massachusetts?

Patriot Ledger, August 31, 2013

In Massachusetts, 21 percent of all leisure and hospitality workers and one-quarter of all education workers earn less than $11 an hour, according to the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, a non-profit research center funded by foundations, unions and private donations.

All Carrot, No Stick: Rethinking Corporate Tax Breaks

Cognoscenti, August 29, 2013

A year ago, an analysis by the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center came to the same conclusion, arguing that the assumptions underlying tax incentives for businesses are "long overdue for a careful analysis of their costs and benefits."

Study: Massachusetts wages stagnate despite productivity growth (BBJ Slideshow)

Boston Business Journal, August 29, 2013

Over the past three decades, the Bay State's economy has more than doubled its output. During that same span, wage growth has more or less stagnated. That's according to a new analysis — appropriately timed four days before Labor Day — by the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center.

Spending money to make money

American City and County, August 26, 2013

"It becomes very clear, when you look at the higher-wage states, they have one thing in common: They have a well-educated work force," Noah Berger, president of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center and one of the study's lead authors, told The Washington Post. "The states that have poorly educated workforces have low median wages."

Report: Long-term education investments lead to higher wages

Washington Post, GovBeat, August 22, 2013

"It becomes very clear, when you look at the higher-wage states, they have one thing in common: They have a well-educated work force," said Noah Berger, president of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center and one of the study's lead authors. "The states that have poorly educated workforces have low median wages."

Report: States Can Build a Stronger Economy by Focusing Resources on Education

The Skanner, August 22, 2013

Authors Noah Berger, president of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, and Peter Fisher, research director at the Iowa Policy Project, found what they called a striking consistency in the findings...."Overwhelmingly, high-wage states are states with a well-educated workforce. There is a clear and strong correlation between the educational attainment of a state's workforce and median wages in the state."

For States, Investing in Education is the Key to Economic Prosperity

Paramus Post, August 22, 2013

In A Well-Educated Workforce is Key to State Prosperity, Noah Berger, president of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, and Peter Fisher, research director at the Iowa Policy Project, find a strong link between the educational attainment of a state’s workforce and both productivity and median wages in the state. Expanding access to high quality education will create more economic opportunity for residents and do more to strengthen a state's overall economy than anything else a state government can do.

Report: Educated Workforce Directly Linked To Economic Prosperity

WGBH, August 22, 2013

"We lead the country with about 46 percent of our workers with a college degree but that means over half of them don't have a college degree and looking into the future--in 20 or 30 years, I think it's important to ask what would our economy look like if instead of 46 percent with a college degree, it became 56, or 66 or 70 percent," Berger said.

In tax policy, Mass. looking more red than blue

Boston Globe, August 18, 2013

Any increase in the reliance on the sales tax is of concern because of its regressive nature, said Noah Berger, president of the liberal Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center. At the same time, he said, the state needs to increase revenues to support services...."But what's the option?" he asked, noting that lawmakers and voters have consistently either beaten back efforts to raise or even maintain income tax rate levels. "Short of raising [the income tax], it becomes a difficult and complicated question."

Hollywood scam; Tax credits cost taxpayers

Union Leader, August 18, 2013

Noah Berger, president of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, told the Globe that the tax break to film companies equals 25 percent of their payroll and production costs, as well as a sales tax exemption. "Even if the movie does make any money, we don’t get back any of those profits," Berger said. "The way the law works, you can make a movie and it can be great, terrible, popular, not popular . . . and we will simply pay 25 percent of the cost of making it."

Legislature tackles minimum wage issue

Worcester Telegram & Gazette, August 15, 2013

According to the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center an increase would directly affect 332,500 workers who now earn between $8 and $10 an hour and have a ripple effect of pushing up wages for another 248,400 who now earn between $10 and $12 an hour....That group estimated that if the minimum wage goes up to $10 an hour those making the minimum would see an annual pay increase of about $1,760 per year. The average increase for indirectly affected workers currently making between $10 and $12 an hour would be about $528 per year according to their estimates.

After big tax break, cop film ‘RIPD’ was a flop

Boston Globe, August 14, 2013

Noah Berger, president of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, a Boston think tank that has studied Massachusetts’ incentive programs, said the state provides a very generous tax break to film companies--a credit equal to 25 percent of their payroll and production costs, as well as a sales tax exemption--but gets relatively little in return...."Even if the movie does make any money, we don’t get back any of those profits," Berger added. "The way the law works, you can make a movie and it can be great, terrible, popular, not popular...and we will simply pay 25 percent of the cost of making it."

Time to raise the minimum wage

Worcester Telegram & Gazette, July 31, 2013

What is worse is minimum wage workers have seen the purchasing power of their earnings decline since 1968, when the minimum wage hit its peak. At that time, in 2013-inflation adjusted dollars, minimum wage workers made roughly $10.72 an hour, according to the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center.

State House News -- Study predicts minimum wage hike will cost jobs, cut economic output

Wicked Local Hingham (via SHNS), July 25, 2013

According to the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, the minimum wage has increased six times since 1995, and each time employment growth in industries with high concentrations of minimum wage workers has been more positive than total employment growth, and "markedly higher" than growth in sectors with low concentrations of minimum wage workers.

Revenue smoke signals

CommonWealth Magazine, July 24, 2013

Health benefits make the [cigarette tax] proposal a “twofer,” said Noah Berger, president of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center. The number of packs bought decreased from 278 million to 225 million after the 2008 tax hike. “As public health policy, [the cigarette tax] is extremely good,” said Berger. “There is strong evidence it reduces smoking rates, in particular among young people.” In turn, this leads to long-term savings for the Commonwealth since fewer smokers mean fewer smoking-related diseases.

Seattle-area resident nostalgic about BHS

Brookline TAB Blog, July 17, 2013

It's true that Massachusetts ranked in the top 10 among states for per pupil spending* while Washington is 10th from the bottom. And Washington is third from the bottom in education as percentage of total economy, according to the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center. But in that category, the Bay State is not setting the world on fire, it's smack dab in the middle, just one percentage point above the national average.

Kids Count report gives top rating to Mass. education

Worcester Telegram & Gazette, July 11, 2013

"It's good that we've seen some progress, but the progress has been slow," said Noah Berger, president of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, which is a local partner of the Casey Foundation for Kids Count. He said a well-educated workforce is simply good for the state economy, and he is in favor of measures that will benefit children and young families, such as jobs for young adults, a higher minimum wage and affordable, high-quality child care.

Is it enough? Living on minimum wage in Worcester

Worcester Magazine, July 10, 2013

The Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center estimates the minimum wage increase being considered would help 325,000 workers who earn between $8 and $10. Those workers will see annual incomes increase by about $1,760. Collectively, minimum wage workers will earn $724 million that advocates say they will spend in their local economies.

Inspections of health care facilities likely to expand

Boston Globe, July 4, 2013

The $1.2 million increase for the safety and quality bureau, which licenses hospitals, nursing homes, and other health care facilities, restores some of the previous reductions to its budget. During the past four years, the bureau has lost about $4.7 million, a 26 percent cut when adjusted for inflation, according to an analysis by the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center.

$34B budget approved on Beacon Hill

Worcester Telegram & Gazette, July 2, 2013

One budget watch group, however, said local aid and higher education funding is still far below earlier funding levels. Noah Berger, president of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, said when adjusted for inflation, general local aid allocations will be 25 percent lower than 2001, while higher education funding will fall 44 percent lower than the 2001 funding level.

Lawmakers approve $34B Mass. budget

Boston Herald (via AP), July 2, 2013

Noah Berger, president of the independent Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, noted that while the budget restores funding that has been slashed in several key areas in recent years, higher education remains 25 percent below and higher education 44 percent below 2001 levels after being adjusted for inflation.

State budget just needs to be signed

Sun Chronicle, July 2, 2013

"This budget begins to restore funding that has been cut from a number of crucial programs, including general local aid and higher education," said Noah Berger, president of Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center...Berger said local aid is still 44 percent below 2001 levels when adjusted for inflation. Higher education is 25 percent below that level.

Legislators' budget out of balance, needs compromise on taxes

Lowell Sun, July 1, 2013

"This budget begins to restore funding that has been cut from a number of crucial programs including general local aid and higher education," Noah Berger, president of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, said in a statement. "But funding in those areas, which was cut deeply in the wake of large income tax cuts about fifteen years ago, remains far below what it had been. Adjusting for inflation, general local aid in FY 2014 will still be 44 percent below the 2001 level and funding for higher education will still be 25 percent below the 2001 level."

In Massachusetts, more support needed for early education

Bay State Banner, June 26, 2013

There are also serious long-term consequences for children who fall into this achievement gap. In our changing economy, a high school diploma is often not enough to find employment that will pay a livable wage. The Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center has shown that Massachusetts workers with a bachelor’s degree or higher earn over twice as much as workers with just a high school degree.

Employers fear pain ahead from wage-hike push

Lowell Sun, June 23, 2013

The nonpartisan Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center published research earlier this year that found a higher minimum wage generally benefits an economy. Because the economy is so large, a wage increase wouldn't have a major impact, but the negative aspect of higher costs for employers would be offset by more money in the pockets of many workers, said Noah Berger, the center's president.

Food stamps, minimum wage hike invest in our future

Somerville News, June 20, 2013

Meanwhile, the minimum wage has not kept up with inflation. The real value of the minimum wage in Massachusetts today is 24 percent below its 1968 level, when it represented $10.58 per hour in today’s dollars, according to Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center.

Cities, towns eye rainy day fund windfall

Boston Herald, June 19, 2013

State aid of all kinds to municipalities has dropped by 46 percent since 2001, according to the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center.

What a Wage is Worth

Boston Globe, June 18, 2013

According to the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, if the minimum wage had grown over the last 35 years at the same rate as worker productivity, it would be $16.02 today. If it rose at the same rate as CEO compensation, it would be $62.36.

Senate releases welfare proposal

Sentinel & Enterprise (via State House News), June 18, 2013

According to the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, total state spending between 1995 and 2013 on the TAFDC grant program, or Transitional Aid to Families with Dependent Children, has dropped from $992 million to $315 million when accounting for inflation. Murray said the welfare reforms of the mid-1990s helped reduce caseloads by half from a high of 103,000 families to a low of 49,000 families.

Massachusetts Needs Major K-12 Funding Changes, Group Argues

Education Week, June 18, 2013

The state's Education Reform Act, passed in 1993, now needs reform itself, according to a report from the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center released on June 18, "Ed Reform at Twenty." This landmark law created the basic structure for K-12 funding in the Bay State, including a "foundation" amount per pupil required for so-called adequate education, a required local contribution, state aid to fill in any gap between the "foundation" level, and then any additional per-pupil funding local districts wish to provide.

Education Reform at 20

Boston Globe, June 15, 2013

In contrast to the generous expansion of the 1990s, education funding for the last decade has remained flat. As a result, according to the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, many (mostly low-income) school districts simply do not have the resources needed to provide the caliber of education envisioned in the reform act's foundation budget.

Massachusetts Cigarette Tax Top 10 In US–Ranking

Go Local Worcester, June 13, 2013

There is a method to this madness, says Mass Budget President Noah Berger. “The Tax Foundation data shows that our tobacco tax is above average, which represents a state policy to reduce smoking rates–particularly among young people–by increasing the cost of tobacco products."

Should Massachusetts Raise The Minimum Wage? Here’s What The Research Says

WBUR, June 11, 2013

Noah Berger, president of MassBudget, replied that the nation is far wealthier than it was in the 1930s or even the 1960s. And the incomes of low-wage workers, he said, haven’t kept up with the state's median wage.

Mass. Legislative Commitee Will Hold Hearing On Raising Minimum Wage

WAMC, June 11, 2013

Noah Berger, President of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, said that a raise in the minimum wage would strengthen the purchasing power for low-income individuals and families, which would strengthen local economies..."One of the things to remember about low-wage workers is that those are the people who are more likely to spend what they earn right away in their local community," said Berger.

Mass. will consider minimum wage hike

Boston Globe, June 11, 2013

The Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, a nonpartisan research group, says poverty level for an individual in the state is $11,484; it is about $22,800 for a family of four.

There’s A Push to Raise the Minimum Wage in Massachusetts

Boston Magazine, June 10, 2013

Data from the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center also shows that when the minimum wage does not increase from year to year, but prices and the cost of living continue to go up, minimum-wage workers have lose the ability to purchase the products that they bought the previous year, often cutting back on certain expenses.

Former MassHealth CEO fined $25,000 for conflict of interest

Patriot Ledget (via State House News Service), June 5, 2013

Tasked with providing health care to certain low and medium income individuals, MassHealth has a budget of just under $11 billion in the current fiscal year and covers about 1.4 million people, according to a Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center analyst.

Census Data Suggests Mass. Punching Below Its Weight On Education Spending

WBUR, May 20, 2013

But in an analysis of the 2010 census data, the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center identified another, short-term factor that helps explain the state’s low rank: Massachusetts front-loaded its spending of federal education stimulus dollars, pouring more into its schools in 2009 than most states and leaving little left over for 2010 and 2011.

Lost In The Budget Debate, A Shrinking State Government

WBUR, May 17, 2013

Noah Berger, president of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, says the Great Recession is partly to blame for the cuts over time. But a series of tax cuts phased in between 1998 and 2002, he adds, is the prime structural factor.

UMass fee freeze possibly stymied by Senate

WWLP.com 22News, May 16, 2013

"This adds $15 million to last year's level, which is more than $200 million below where we had been. So there are still tens of thousands of kids who don't have access to early education," said Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center President Noah Berger.

Senate budget tack leaves room to negotiate key issues with House

Dorchester Reporter (via State House News Service), May 15, 2013

Noah Berger, president of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, said new investments in early education, public health and local aid still fall below levels from 1998 through 2002 when income tax rates were cut, reducing revenue by $3 billion. "We know that investing in our people is essential to building a strong economy, and that public health investments and oversight can save both money and lives. We see in this budget, as we saw in the House budget, that without restoring more of the revenue lost to income tax cuts it is nearly impossible to make major investments to improve the long-term economic prospects of our state," Berger said.

With Mass. Economy Slowly Recovering, Senate Proposes Modest Budget

WBUR, May 15, 2013

Noah Berger, president of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, had a lukewarm response to the Senate budget unveiled Wednesday..."While the Senate Ways and Means Budget makes some modest investments in transportation and education that are good for the long term strength of our economy," he said in a statement, "it leaves funding levels for early education, public health and local aid well below where they were before the income tax cuts of 1998-2002 — cuts that still cost the state $3 billion per year."

State Senate budget would freeze local aid, boost school funding

MetroWest Daily News, May 15, 2013

The state has cut or held this type of aid level every year since fiscal 2008, according to the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center. After adjusting for inflation, unrestricted aid this year is down about 46 percent since fiscal 2001, according to the center.

Budget Cuts Have Left Massachusetts Unable To Inspect Food Plants, Hospitals, And Air Quality

ThinkProgress, May 15, 2013

Over the past four years, the bureau responsible for health care safety has seen its budget reduced by about $4.7 million, a 26 percent cut when adjusted for inflation, according to an analysis by the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center.

Senate unveils nearly $34B state budget

WWLP, May 15, 2013

"But in a lot of areas it’s still investing much less then we were just 15 years ago," said Massachusetts Budget & Policy Center President Noah Berger. "A smart plan to begin to restore some of that revenue in a fair way so that we can make those investments would be really good for our economy in the long run."

Citing backlog, state health agency pleads for funds

Boston Globe, May 14, 2013

Over the past four years, the bureau responsible for health care safety has seen its budget reduced by about $4.7 million, a 26 percent cut when adjusted for inflation, according to an analysis by the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center.

Rep. Brodeur: Budgeting for our future

Wicked Local Melrose, May 5, 2013

If you have any questions about the budget, the Mass. Budget website is very helpful: massbudget.org. As always, I welcome your comments, ideas and priorities and the budget process continues.

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.