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Three cost centers consume half of state budget

MAY 22, 2019 | by Michael Norton, Katie Lannan | WGBH NEWS (MASSACHUSETTS)

By Katie Lannan and Michael Norton, includes “About half of the $42.7 billion Senate budget proposal is consumed by spending in just three areas — health care, pensions and debt service … spending on MassHealth, the health care program that serves 1.8 million seniors, children and low-income residents, totals $16.55 billion, or about 38 percent of the budget … Rodrigues said proposed spending on public employee pensions, at $2.84 billion, accounts for 6 percent of total spending. And spending on debt service is set to rise by $86 million to $2.56 billion, also accounting for 6 percent of state spending.” (Note: there is a difference between “spending” money on contributions to pension plans, and “spending” money in accrual expenses for pension costs.)

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