Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Senator Spilka: FY18 Senate Budget + Session Wrap Up

We did it!  Thanks to your calls, emails, tweets and testimony, we were able to stop the Baker Administration from pushing through the most sweeping reforms to Massachusetts health care without any input from the public.  The Legislature will now move forward with our efforts to vet these proposals in a formal, transparent manner.

Working with our colleagues in the House, we were also able to create a dedicated reserve for Committee for Public Counsel Services (CPCS) in the FY18 budget, to support the important work of our bar advocates and ensure access to justice for all.  

I'm also proud to report that the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act is now law. Everyone deserves a safe, healthy work environment, and that includes pregnant and nursing workers.  Women are an important part of our economic success, and we must do all we can to make sure our laws reflect the everyday reality facing our workforce.

Below are more highlights from the final Fiscal Year 2018 state budget, the beginning of the 2017-2018 legislative session, and around the district.

Please remember that this newsletter is just a snapshot of my work at the State House and in the district.  If you want the full picture, be sure to follow me on Facebook and Twitter.

It continues to be my absolute pleasure to serve the people of the 2nd Norfolk and Middlesex district, and the Commonwealth.  As always, if you have any questions, comments or ideas, please don't hesitate to contact my office! 

Photo by Mike Deehan

Spilka: Our state's health care commitment
MetroWest Daily News
These proposals, arguably the most significant changes to the state's MassHealth program since the 1990s, would rescind MassHealth eligibility or reduce benefits for 400,000 low income adults. Many stakeholder groups and health care advocates have expressed concerns to me that these changes could seriously impact our most vulnerable residents, those who are least able to afford restricted access to medications, the loss of benefits or an increase in co-pays and deductibles.
Reforms Or Rollbacks? Baker Battles Dems Over MassHealth

Ashland Sen. Karen Spilka, the Senate's top budget writer, said there need to be solutions to the cost problem that don't include limiting local Medicaid enrollment, which was expanded under the Affordable Care Act.

"If we accepted the governor's proposal on this, Massachusetts would be the first state in the nation to start rolling back Medicaid expansion. That is not a direction I would like to see Massachusetts going. We are a Commonwealth. We take care of our residents, particularly our most vulnerable residents," Spilka told WGBH News.

Commonwealth Magazine

WCVB Channel 5
Office of State Senator Karen E. Spilka
Room 212, State House
Boston, Massachusetts  02133
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Senator Karen E. Spilka, Massachusetts State House, Room 212, Boston, MA 02133

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