The House Committee on Ways and Means released its FY18 budget
proposal earlier this week. Proposed amendments to the pending
budget are due back today and debate is set to begin the week of
The Trial Court received $656.6 million in funding for FY18. This
number is greater than the $646.8 million proposed by Gov. Charlie
Baker. This budget maintained funding for the court's specialty
sessions. However, the measure on expanding the scope of the
Housing Court is still under debate and was not included in the
House Ways and Means recommendation. The budget includes funding
for the judicial pay increases that were part of a larger pay
increase passed by the Legislature earlier this year. The bar is
grateful for these increases as a number of clerks and registers
and their staff will also receive a boost in compensation.
The Massachusetts Legal Assistance Corporation (MLAC) was funded
at $19.5 million, a $1.5 million increase from FY17 funding. Rep.
Ruth Balser (D-Newton) has filed an amendment for an additional
$1.5 million in funding for a total of $21 million. Please contact
your state representative today and ask them to support Amendment
#822 to increase legal aid funding during the budget debate. To find your legislator, click here.