Massachusetts lawmakers still must pass $1.1B spending plan

Legislative leaders are returning from Thanksgiving with one big leftover on their plate.

BOSTON (AP) — Massachusetts lawmakers are returning from Thanksgiving with one big leftover on their plate — what to do with a $1.1 billion surplus in tax revenue from the last fiscal year.

Passing such spending bills is usually a routine matter on Beacon Hill.

Legislative leaders had hoped to button down the bill before Thanksgiving but failed to meet that goal.

The debate now carries on into December when lawmakers are typically taking a break from heavy legislative lifting before returning in earnest in January.

The beginning of the year also marks the start of budget negotiation on the next fiscal year’s budget — in this case the 2021 fiscal year.

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That budget is supposed to be passed by lawmakers and signed by Republican Gov. Charlie Baker by the end of June.

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