BOSTON (WWLP) – State lawmakers worked through the night to act on controversial bills. It took them until almost 1 o’clock in the morning to send major pieces of legislation to the Governor’s desk.
A 2.2-billion dollar borrowing bill to fund energy, parks and conservation projects made the cut. Sen. Don Humason, (R) Westfield, said, “Ten million dollars will be spent on Connecticut River clean-up for the cities of Holyoke, Chicopee, Springfield and Ludlow.”
An 85-million dollar plan to boost job growth in under-performing cities is also awaiting Governor Deval Patrick’s signature. Rep. Joe Wagner, (D) Chicopee, said, “We’re trying, through the economic development bill, to target dollars and initiatives to things that will help grow businesses and grow jobs particularly in western Massachusetts.”
A bill allowing police chiefs to petition the courts to deny firearm ID cards for shotguns and rifles also passed both the House and the Senate, but not everyone is satisfied. Rep. Nick Boldyga, (R) Southwick, said, “I don’t believe it should be allowed up to someone to decide whether or not each of us are subject to have our civil rights and our constitutional rights and I have some major concerns over that.”
Legislation requiring insurance companies to cover treatment services for those battling addiction is also headed to the Governor’s desk.
Governor Patrick has ten days to sign the bills into law. If he doesn’t, better luck again next year.