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Update: Mass. governor slashes proposed nursing home wage increase

July 14, 2016
by Nicole Stempak, Senior Editor
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Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker halved the raise legislators budgeted for nursing home staff wages.

The Legislature approved a $35.5 million increase on “wages, benefits and related employee costs of direct care staff” at nursing homes in April.  

Days before the budget was to go into effect, Baker cut that money in half in the budget he signed into law citing significant tax revenue shortfall.

1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East executive vice president Tyrek Lee noted in a letter to state lawmakers that money that the pay raise was not dependent on state revenue and urged legislators to override Baker’s veto.

“Workers deserve quality jobs and quality wages, and this critical funding is essential to ensuring quality long-term care for Massachusetts seniors, people with disabilities, and their families,” Lee said in a statement Wednesday. “Many of these workers are struggling to survive on little more than minimum wage, and this funding provides a much-needed boost.”

Related: Mass. lawmakers want to raise nursing home wages