Daily News

Governor Signs $1.8 Billion Bond Bill to Improve IT, Public Safety, Food Security

BOSTON — Gov. Charlie Baker signed “An Act Financing the General Governmental Infrastructure of the Commonwealth,” which authorizes up to $1.8 billion in capital funding for key investments in public safety, food security, and information technology (IT). This includes programs to enhance the security of the Commonwealth’s IT assets, improve the delivery of state and local services, and continue responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We are pleased to have worked closely with the Legislature to sign this bill into law and continue investing in information-technology improvements, public-safety upgrades, and food security across the Commonwealth,” Baker said. “We are continuing to support critical capital investments that modernize our technology infrastructure and allow us to deliver effective and reliable government services for the people of Massachusetts during the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic.”

Authorizations totaling $660 million in the legislation will support IT-infrastructure needs throughout the Commonwealth, strengthening cybersecurity and improving how state agencies serve their constituents. The bill authorizes $90 million for public safety, including $10 million to establish a new fire-training facility in Southeastern Mass.

In addition, $346.5 million is authorized for municipal grant programs, including $25 million for firefighter-safety grants, $10 million for a municipal ADA-accessibility grant program, and $5 million for the Community Compact program. The legislation also authorizes $37.3 million in capital funding to ensure food security for residents across the Commonwealth.

Other notable authorizations in the bond bill include $115 million for library-construction grants, $20 million for a program to enhance fiber-optic connectivity in key municipal buildings, and $375 million for repairs and improvements to facilities across the Commonwealth.