Governor Baker Files Supplemental Budget to Expand Shelter Capacity
November 28, 2022
On November 18th, Governor Baker filed a Supplemental budget H.5394 to provide housing and other necessary services for refugees and migrants. The arrival of refugees and migrants from countries like Afghanistan, Haiti, Venezuela, and Ukraine has led to increased demand for emergency shelters in Massachusetts. The Governor proposes establishing a reserve of $130 million through the supplemental budget for increased shelter capacity, healthcare costs, and services across all state agencies responding to the increased need.
Massachusetts is a right-to-shelter state and provides shelter to all individuals and families eligible. In addition to the $20 million reserve allocated through the recently passed Economic Development bill, the supplemental budget proposes to:
Cover the projected cost of the Emergency Assistance (EA) program through the end of the fiscal year 2023
Facilitate the recruitment and retention of service providers
Support renovation and construction costs to bring new shelter units online
Establish and operate a temporary centralized intake center for families eligible for shelter
The budget bill also includes $37 million of the reserve for local school districts through the next two school years for student aid and authorization for the transfer of funds between EA and HomeBASE programs. For more information, see the Governor's letter to the Legislature on the Supplemental Budget.