Invests in food security, education, and public safety accountability

(BOSTON) – State Representative Joan Meschino (D-Hull) joined her colleagues in the House and Senate to pass legislation authorizing up to $1.8 billion in spending for the improvement of information technology equipment and other capital projects in Massachusetts.

The legislation also authorizes funding for food security, law enforcement body cameras, and investments in educational technologies in Massachusetts schools.

“At the core of these investments is a deep understanding of how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected the Commonwealth,” said Representative Meschino. “It is time to be proactive to ensure that the needs of all are being met. This bill meets the challenges of the moment to bring support to our constituents, especially our most vulnerable.”

The capital plan, which includes $794 million for state and local general technology and physical infrastructure, features the following targeted investments.

  • $110 million in public safety infrastructure and equipment;
  • $134 million in statewide economic development grants and reinvestment in disproportionately impacted communities;
  • $80 million in educational IT and infrastructure grants, including $50 million to assist public schools in facilitating remote learning environments;
  • $10 million to fund technology investments at community health centers;
  • $37 million in food security grants;
  • $25 million in capital improvements for licensed early education and care providers and after school programs to ensure safe reopening during COVID-19; and,
  • $30 million in public safety accountability technologies including body cameras and a race and ethnicity data sharing system.

The legislation has been signed into law by the governor.

Updated from May 22, 2020.