I know you all get alerts from various advocacy groups to call your Senator today to urge her/him to support a budget amendment. The one below came into my email last night from Lew Finfer around youth jobs, youth leadership and anti violence programs are near and dear to my heart. And they are dear to my head because these programs really do make a difference in thousands of kids lives.
……YouthWorks, School to Career, Shannon, DPH Youth Violence Prevention Program and YARG, Safe and Successful Youth Initiative, let alone MAP, Youth Build…..
It can get tiring to have to fight these battles every year.
When a program, to use just one example, like the state youth jobs program that was funded at $9 million only gets $2 million in this year’s House Ways and Means budget despite the need and despite all the meetings so many have attended with legislators, it can get discouraging.
We did get the full House to increase it up to $5 million….Senate Ways and Means recommended to $8 million….but now in this week’s Senate budget debate, we need $1 million more to just get back to level funding and then make sure this is the final level passed in the June House-Senate Conference Committee.
I wonder what goes on in the minds of the powerful legislators who decide these things….Do they think these programs are unimportant? Are the proposed cuts used as bargaining chips to get the other branch to have to back what’s more important to them on some other budget program? Are they mad at our or your organization or some person because they push for this?
I’m a little tired too, but I do believe that if we don’t do anything, that cuts would continue, so we do have to fight each year. Despite the terrible budget cuts, we have built back some restorations in part of the cuts to Shannon and DPH YVP and have added $1 M to what was in the past spent on YouthWorks. And on other terrain, we have a chance to increase the state minimum wage lawto help 580,000 low wage earners…
What you can do this week on the Senate Budget decision….
**You have between now and Wednesday mid-day, to ask your State Senator to co-sponsor these budget amendments and fight for them,
[see amendments below, the amendment number, and co-sponsors as of Friday afternoon....]
–Youth Jobs: YouthWorks Amendment #703 of Senator Chang-Diaz and Amendment # 41 of Senator Wolf
–Youth Jobs: School to Career Connecting Activities Amendment # 347 of Senator Brownsberger
—Shannon Anti-Gang Violence Grant Program Amendment #436 of Senator Donoghue
–Safe and Successful Youth Initiative SSYI Amendment # 695 of Senator Chang-Diaz
–DPH Youth Violence Prevention Program Amendment # 700 of Senator Chang-Diaz
See also on amendments on Pathways from Poverty, Youth Build….further below
Amendment 703 [YouthWorks] Youth At-Risk Job Programs Senator Chang-Diaz
Ms. Chang-Diaz and Messrs. Donnelly, DiDomenico, Moore, Rush, McGee, Wolf and Knapik moved that the bill be amended, in Section 2, in item 7002-0012, by striking out the figure “8,000,000” and inserting in place thereof the figure:- “11,000,000”
Amendment 41 Youthworks Senator Wolf
Mr. Wolf and Ms. Chang-Diaz and Messrs. DiDomenico and Rodrigues moved that the bill be amended, in Section 2, in item 7002-0012, by striking out the figure “8,000,000″ and inserting in place thereof the figure: “11,000,000.”
Amendment 347 School-to-Career Senator Brownsberger
Messrs. Brownsberger, Donnelly, DiDomenico, Rodrigues and Moore and Ms. Chang-Diaz moved that the bill be amended, in Section 2, in item 7027-0019, by striking out the figure “$2,870,000″ and inserting in place thereof the following figure:- “4,100,000″
Amendment 436 Shannon Grants Senator Donghue
Ms. Donoghue and Mr. Finegold and Ms. Clark and Mr. Rodrigues moved that the bill be amended, in Section 2, in item 8100-0111, by striking out the figure “$6,250,000″ and inserting in place thereof the following figure:- “7,750,000″.
Amendment 695 Safe and Successful Youth Initiative Senator Chang-Diaz
Ms. Chang-Diaz and Messrs. Donnelly, Rodrigues, Finegold, Moore and DiDomenico and Ms. Candaras and Messrs. Knapik, Welch and Kennedy moved that the bill be amended, in Section 2, in item 4000-0005, by striking the figure “4,000,000” and inserting in place thereof the following figure:- “10,000,000”
Amendment 700 Violence Prevention Grants Senator Chang-Diaz
Ms. Chang-Diaz and Ms. Clark and Mr. Knapik moved that the bill be amended, in Section 2, in item 4590-1506, by striking out the figure “$1,501,220” and inserting in place thereof the following figure:- “2,000,000”
Amendment 293 Pathways to Family Economic Self-Sufficiency Senator Donoghue
Ms. Donoghue and Messrs. Donnelly and Knapik and Ms. Clark and Mr. Eldridge and Ms. Jehlen and Mr. Finegold and Ms. Chang-Diaz moved that the bill be amended by inserting after section __, the following new section:-
“Section __. (a) Notwithstanding any general or special law to the contrary, the comptroller shall transfer $2,000,000 from the General Fund to the Commonwealth Corporation, under contract with the Department of Transitional Assistance, for the administration of a three-year pilot program called Pathways to Family Economic Self-Sufficiency.
(b) Said pilot shall equip low-income families for long-term economic stability by providing enhanced preparation for, increased access to, and support for success in education and training programs leading to employment in high-demand occupations.
(c) Eligible individuals include adults and teens with responsibility for the care of one or more dependent children who: (i) are receiving or have within the past two years received Transitional Aid to Families with Dependent Children, or, (ii) who are receiving or have within the past two years received Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits, or, (iii) are receiving or have within the past two years received Mass Health benefits on behalf of her or himself or one or more dependent children, and, (iv) who are determined suitable for participation in the Pilot based on an assessment of education, work experience, interest in participation and other factors;
(d) At least 40 percent of the Pathways participants shall be recipients of Transitional Aid to Families with Dependent Children at the time their participation begins.
(e) The pilot shall be administered by the Commonwealth Corporation under contract with the Department of Transitional Assistance; the Commonwealth Corporation will administer a request for proposal to select the pilot sites. Qualified respondents must demonstrate their capacity for and experience in supporting the efforts of low-income families to prepare for, obtain, and maintain employment. Commonwealth Corporation shall engage an independent evaluator for the purposes of documenting implementation to support replication and evaluating outcomes of the Pilot.
Amendment 374 YouthBuild Senator Donoghue
Ms. Donoghue and Messrs. Rodrigues, Moore, Donnelly, Welch, Brownsberger and Kennedy and Ms. Candaras and Messrs. Montigny, DiDomenico and Knapik moved that the bill be amended, in Section 2, in item 7061-9626, by striking out the figure “$1,500,000″ and inserting in place thereof the following figure:- “2,770,000″.
Amendment 710 on 4590-1507 DPH Youth at Risk Senator Jehlen
Teen Empowerment [earmark]
Ms. Jehlen moved that the bill be amended, in Section 2, in item 4590-1507, by striking out the words “that each organization previously included in the youth-at-risk grants shall receive in fiscal year 2014 a grant in an amount not less than that received in fiscal year 2013” and inserting in place thereof the following words:-
“that the department of public health shall award not less than $100,000 to the Center for Teen Empowerment, Inc.”;
and in said item by striking out the figure “$2,950,000” and inserting in place thereof the figure:-