Mass. House GOP Question Patrick Administration Over Budget

Massachusetts House Republicans sharply questioned Deval Patrick’s administration Tuesday over the governor’s proposed budget.

Rep. Matt Beaton asked why the governor hasn’t come through on his campaign promise to cut property taxes.

“I don’t think there’s a single community that can say that property taxes have gone down,” Beaton says.

The Shrewsbury Republican says the governor’s plan to freeze local aid payments next year would force cities and towns to rely even more on property taxes.

Patrick’s budget secretary, Glen Shor, says the governor has provided communities with the ability to raise meal and hotel taxes and save money from pension and health care reforms.

“We believe the full breadth of measures we have provided to municipalities gives them tools, important tools to manage finances and property tax relief,” Shor says.

Republicans also slammed the governor’s plan to withdraw money from the state’s rainy day fund and to tax candy and soda.

In many ways, Republicans are on the same page as Democratic House Speaker Robert DeLeo. He’s has already said he would not approve any new taxes and that he plans to give more money to cities and towns.