Evironmental Bond Bill Signed by Governor Patrick

$2.2 Billion Environmental Bond Signed

Gov. Deval Patrick signed a $2.2 billion environmental bond bill Wednesday that supporters said is an investment for future generations. The four-year borrowing bill authorizes spending on environmental restoration, land conservation and urban agriculture. A tax incentive for land conservation would have its cap increased from $50,000 to $75,000 under the new law. The compromise bill provides funding for what officials have said would be a $65 million state contribution toward a $300 million project dredging Boston Harbor to allow larger ships to use terminals. New Bedford Harbor would also receive $35 million in state funding earmarked for a federal dredging project. Urban agriculture programs could see $8 million in funding and up to $111.2 million would be used to fund the cleanup and development of recreation areas in populous areas with limited access to parks. During a bill-signing ceremony at the State House, Patrick said he was proud to sign the legislation that would allow the state to have a “green future and a strong economy.” Sen. Marc Pacheco, co-chair of the Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture Committee, said the bill authorizing investments in environmental projects “will truly be an investment in the air that we breathe, the water we drink, and the land that we walk on that produces the food that we all consume here in this great Commonwealth of Massachusetts.” The governor in his final term asked lawmakers to advance more than $20 billion in long-term borrowing bills and the proposals, while redrafted, were all shipped back to him to become laws.
- C. Quinn, State House News Service

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