Mass. lawmakers approve military bond bill

f-15 jet Barnes air national guard base

BOSTON (AP) — The Legislature has approved a bill authorizing the state to borrow up to $177 million to upgrade the state’s military installations.

The five-year military bond bill, sent to Gov. Deval Patrick’s desk by the Senate on Thursday, would include repairs to the runway at Barnes Air National Guard Base in Westfield.

MassDevelopment, the state’s independent financial agency, would have the task of overseeing projects funded by bonds authorized under the bill.

Senate President Therese Murray says military bases play a key role in the overall health of the state’s economy.

The Donahue Institute at the University of Massachusetts has estimated the installations support 46,000 jobs and bring a $14.2 billion economic benefit to the state.

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