Five Worst Pieces of Pork In The Massachusetts House Fiscal Year 2025 Budget Proposal

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Massachusetts state legislators are working on yet another bloated budget, this time for the upcoming fiscal year 2025.

With more than $57.9 billion in the proposed House budget and various non-monetary provisions, state legislators do not seem interested in embracing fiscal responsibility anytime soon.

The House budget has 1,495 proposed amendments. Here are five of the worst pieces of pork:


1. More Migrant Money 

It’s not enough that Massachusetts lacks a residency requirement in the state’s right-to-shelter law and now spends $75 million per month on the emergency shelter system to put up people from all over the world, including illegal immigrants, at long-term hotel stays on the taxpayers’ dime.

No, we need to spend more money to make our state a magnet for migrants, according to one lawmaker.

State Representative Carlos Gonzalez (D-Springfield) proposed Amendment 1278, which would give $2.2 million to the Massachusetts Immigrant and Refugee Advocacy Coalition to provide more services for newly arrived migrants using the state’s emergency shelter system. The money would go towards “legal screenings, work authorization assistance, employment services programming and other non-housing-related supports for newly-arrived immigrants and refugees,” according to the amendment.

Here’s my counter-proposal:  the state puts a six-month residency requirement on the state’s emergency shelter system, bars illegal immigrants from using it, and spends the money more efficiently. There should never be a no-bid contract in the state’s emergency shelter system, nor should it cost $64 per day per person to feed people.

The state already enacted $375 million in emergency cuts elsewhere the current state budget earlier this year — in part, because of emergency shelter system costs. We don’t need lawmakers spending ever-more of our tax dollars on it. 


2. American Indian Mascot Ban

State Representative Brandy Fluker Oakley (D-Mattapan) found something to be offended about.

The lawmaker proposed Amendment 1458, which would bar Massachusetts high schools from having American Indian names, mascots, and logos.

The proposal is an unfunded mandate that provides no money for public high schools to transition to a new team name, something that can cost schools more than $50,000.

It’s also a solution in search of a problem.

Historically, towns have adopted American Indian nicknames and mascots out of pride in the local connection to indigenous peoples, not to insult them.

If communities want to keep or change their mascots, that’s a decision they can make locally. They don’t need Beacon Hill forcing political correctness down their throats.


3. NAACP Funding

This pork sandwich of a state budget would provide $100,000 to the left-wing National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, thanks to state Representative Russell Holmes (D-Mattapan), who filed Amendment 27 to the House budget.

That’s after the state gave the organization $200,000 in federal American Rescue Plan Act funds in 2022.

If you’re thinking civil-rights lunch-counter sit-ins and protests against back-of-the-bus treatment for African-Americans, think again.

The modern version of the NAACP urged pro athletes not to sign with Texas teams over the state’s heartbeat abortion ban in 2021; that alone should disqualify the organization from receiving one cent from the government.

Additionally, a group that advocates on behalf of one racial group shouldn’t get money from the government because it’s by definition excluding everyone else.

Does the black community disproportionately face problems that need addressing?

Yes. But since one of those issues is people being killed before they’re born, this isn’t the best organization to solve those problems. The lives of black unborn children also matter.


4. Basketball Hall of Fame

The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame is a great museum if you like basketball. I visited it this past winter. 

Yet, that doesn’t mean the Hall of Fame needs government funding.

Thanks to state Representative Brian Ashe (D-Longmeadow), the Hall could get $350,000 “for an archive project that will protect irreplaceable historical materials including priceless artifacts, digital media (video footage), historical images, books, and art/memorabilia and also construct comprehensive digital catalogs to preserve historic artifacts that cover the world of basketball,” according to the proposal (Amendment 410).

The Basketball Hall of Fame is a private museum that honors uber-wealthy basketball players and executives. If the Hall of Fame needs money, it should turn to the millionaires and billionaires the museum honors, rather than the working men and women in municipalities like Springfield, where the median household income is about $43,000 per year. 

The money might go to better use helping working-class people in Springfield, rather than going to a museum honoring the wealthy and connected.


5.  LGBT Chamber of Commerce

Massachusetts has an LGBT Chamber of Commerce.

And state Representative Adam Scanlon (D-North Attleboro) wants to provide it with $250,000 in taxpayer funding in fiscal year 2025 (Amendment 936).

The organization’s web site says the Massachusetts LGBT Chamber of Commerce is “a small, lean non-profit powered by hundreds of brilliant LGBT-owned businesses.”

Here are the aims of the organization, according to its web site:


  • We foster meaningful relationships amongst and between member businesses and our corporate partners. These relationships help to identify opportunities and meet the business goals behind them. They also build an ever-stronger network of people committed to both economic growth and diversity and inclusion.

  • We support our members and corporate partners in their goals for improvement. Whether it’s presenting their businesses in the best possible light or creating workplaces that welcome and support LGBT employees and vendors, we are here to help.

  • We champion the innovative practices that ensure LGBT inclusion in our marketplace and their contributions to driving growth throughout the Commonwealth.


If individual businesses want to support gay and transgender-identifying people, they can do that. But they don’t need Massachusetts taxpayers paying for it.


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