DeLeo: Options exist to close budget gap

Rep. Robert DeLeo, third from left, speaks with Lowell Rep. Dave Nangle as fellow Lowell Reps. Rady Mom and Thomas Golden look on from left during a visit to UTEC on Tuesday. SUN/KORI TUITT

LOWELL — With just about two months left until the end of the fiscal year, House Speaker Robert DeLeo said a number of options are under active consideration to reduce a budget deficit that’s approaching a half-billion dollars.

DeLeo spoke to The Sun in Lowell Tuesday after touring UTEC, where he learned more about how the nonprofit s successfully working to reduce the rate of recidivism among young adults.

When it comes to the state budget, DeLeo said they are still in the process of resolving what will be done to address the issue for next year.

“We’re going to have, in a couple of weeks, a discussion about the fair share tax plan relative to half of the funds, so-called millionaires tax, going to transportation and education,” he said. “I think, also, we’re going to be talking about revenue through the marijuana law, through Airbnb and whatnot. So, we’ve got some discussions to do.”

DeLeo added that he understands the concerns of middle-class families when it comes to taxation.

“I think the biggest thing that we did in the budget was to make sure that the neediest amongst us are cared for, that we keep our bond rating where we keep it and that we make major investments relative to some industries as well, that hopefully grow the economy — grow and provide for more jobs.”

Rep. David Nangle said the state may also be impacted by whatever tax reform President Donald Trump may put in place. He said it’s a “wait-and-see approach.

” He said representatives are also waiting…

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