Massachusetts is the only state in the country without a budget for the current fiscal year, which started July 1. One item that could slow legislators down is a proposed immigration amendment.
A measure included in the state Senate's budget would limit cooperation between local police and federal immigration officials. The House did not include a similar item.
State Sen. Eric Lesser is not on the six-member committee hashing out the budget's details. But the Longmeadow Democrat said the immigration amendment is important, even if it's an obstacle.
“With everything happening with the detentions of children, separating them from their parents, Massachusetts is not immune from those issues,” Lesser said Monday. “We need to make sure that that’s thoroughly scrubbed and looked at, and we need to make sure that state funds, and state taxpayer funds are not being used to support that kind of activity.”
Even though there is currently no budget, all state programs are still funded because of a stopgap bill passed on Beacon Hill.
Governor Charlie Baker has suggested that lawmakers send him a budget without any policy amendments.