While there’s not a groundswell around adding new revenues, state senators have collectively proposed adding $1.7 billion to the budget this week, according to an independent analysis.

Senators will begin culling through nearly 1,200 amendments proposed to the Ways and Means Committee’s $41.4 billion fiscal year 2019 budget on Tuesday.

The budget reported out of the Senate Ways and Means Committee (S 4) represents a 3 percent increase in spending over the current year’s budget and is based on an agreement that state tax revenue will grow by 3.5 percent in fiscal 2019, significantly less than tax revenue growth so far this fiscal year.

The spending plan relies on revenue from new taxes on legal marijuana sales and short-term rentals, as well as $65 million in new corporate tax payments stemming from the repatriation measure in the new federal tax law.

Senators are proposing 1,196 amendments, with 855 of them (roughly 71 percent) having a quantifiable fiscal impact, according to the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation.

If the Senate were to adopt all 1,196 amendments, it would add $1.7 billion in spending to the bottom line, MTF said. Last year, the Senate added $52.1 million to its budget via floor amendments.

Most of the amendments that are not withdrawn from consideration, usually an indication of that the amendment would not pass, will be adopted or rejected without debate. But deliberations usually lead to a spirited debate and recorded votes on a few specific proposals.

The Senate is scheduled to gavel in at 10 a.m. Tuesday and has scheduled formal sessions for Wednesday and Thursday. Another budget session is planned for Friday if necessary.

Once the Senate approves its budget, a six-member House-Senate conference committee will be named to come up with a consensus budget, working with the July 1 start of the new fiscal year as its deadline.

Senate Amendments Would Grow Budget by $1.7B

by State House News Service time to read: 1 min