Friday, March 19, 2010

Mass Health, 295 million in the red

Get ready for another budget cut before July. Deval will be forced to do something about the huge and growing whole generated by Mass Health. The huge Mass Health program, 60% which is paid by the feds costs the State about 10 Billion a year out of the 27 Billion dollar budget. This program has nothing to do with the Health Care debate going on.

Our reserve fund in the State stands at 675 million and could be used to offset the gap this year. But the long term solution is jobs, cost control and fraud detection.

Bullying Bill Passes the House

In a stunning turnaround, the House approved a bill that would require teachers, buss drivers, principals, cafeteria workers and others to report bullying to law enforcement. It will make bullying a crime. It also mandates training for teachers and others on how to identify bullying which won't take effect until 2011-12 school year. What it doesn't do is provide a fine for those who don't report it. And further, it some how leaves out the parents. It still needs to go back to the Senate for tweaking. Wait until a 5th grader is taken out of school in hand cuffs.

The bill defines bullying, in part, as “the repeated use by a perpetrator of a written, verbal, or electronic expression, or physical act or gesture . . . directed at a victim that causes physical or emotional harm or damage to the victim’s property; places the victim in reasonable fear or harm to himself or of damage to his property; [or] creates a hostile environment at school.’’