When I began at The Arc of Massachusetts in late 1991, a transition was underway at the Governor’s office as Bill Weld was in his first year as Governor. The House leader, Charlie Flaherty, was recently elected by peers as Speaker, while the Senate’s William Bulger would continue as President until 1996.
Yesterday, the House and Senate agreed to a compromise conference report on the supplemental budget which includes significant relief funds for our and other constituencies. Speaker Ronald Mariano and Senate President Karen Spilka said the House will take up the compromise bill today, Thursday, December 2 with the Senate planning to follow suit tomorrow. We trust that no member blocks the passage of this budget bill during this critical time.
On the morning of Friday, November 19, the Build Back Better Act passed the House, including the $150 billion investment in home and community-based services for people with disabilities. Thank you to Nicole Jorwic and others at The Arc; Nicole has worked endlessly on this and The Arc will keep up the drum beat and get this through the Senate as fast as we possibly can. Keep your eye out for our renewed action alert with a focus on the Senate!
I’m lucky. Even during COVID and after thirty years, I so appreciate serving at The Arc of Massachusetts, due to our significant mission, and the wonderful colleagues throughout the decades. I gratefully nod at the staff and volunteers who welcomed me in those early days, and although I’ll mention just a few, they represent many.
In my September 30 blog titled “Rebooting the Workforce Initiative,” I also advocated for rebooting the way we deliver services. We have no choice given the workforce crisis we face.