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Reps. Robertson, Nguyen Announce Additional Funds for Tewksbury in Supplemental Year-End Budget

Nov 05, 2019 01:07PM

David Robertson

Tram Nguyen

(Editor's note: The following information was submitted by the office of State Rep. David Robertson, D-Tewksbury)

Boston – Following a lengthy debate over a number of amendments the House of Representatives, including Representatives Robertson, Nguyen, and Gordon, voted to allocate additional resources into a number of critical areas including local education aid, municipal infrastructure, and fighting the opioid crisis. Contributing $400 million to the “rainy day fund”, the House also invested in matching private funds for supporting public colleges and universities, as well as creating educational incentive grants to fill a dire shortage of pre-school teachers.

Tewksbury received special attention with the inclusion of $150,000 that was previously unused for improvements to the Frasca soccer fields. Earmarked for the construction of an outhouse and other facilities, the money will be used to support the growing soccer and other recreational programs that use the fields, including supporting regional tournaments often held on site.

“This budget targeted the right areas of the state and the district” said Representative Robertson. “The $60 million in additional road funds help increase the amount of roadwork that is desperately needed, such as the designing of the segments in the MassDOT pipeline both in Tewksbury and Wilmington. These funds can greatly speed up the process. In addition the $50 million towards the accelerated capital programs of the MBTA will help those who rely on the service to commute into Boston, and fix problems like the North Wilmington train station.”

The budget also included an earmark for $24 million dollars in testing for polyfluoroalkyl substances, known as PFAS, in public drinking water. PFAS's are used in a wide variety of products and have not been manufactured in the United States for a long time, but due to persistence have long contaminated local drinking water. If exposed to PFAS consumers can develop thyroid issues, cancers, reduced immune systems, and low infant birth weights in nursing mothers. Monitoring of chemicals is important, especially in contaminated areas such as the Olin Chemical Plant property. 

The budget will next head to the Senate for approval and modification.

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