PulseLine, April 26, 2013

Hi! I just got back from the variety store and had my lottery ticket checked and I won a whole whopping four dollars. What a joke! I can remember when the lottery first came out. I’m old enough to remember that. That was supposed to solve all the financial problems in the state. Well, we still got all these financial problems and the only things that is happening are the people are making money off the lottery and are just handing it out a little bit at a time to keep the customer happy. In Fiscal Year 2012, the Massachusetts State Lottery returned over $983 million in net profit to the Commonwealth, of which over $883.7 million in Direct Local Aid was distributed to the 351 cities and towns. Lottery revenues are distributed to the 351 cities and towns of the Commonwealth according to a local aid formula established by Legislature (the Lottery doesn’t dictate how funds are allocated.  They are solely responsible for generating revenue and returning it to the Commonwealth for distribution). Lottery funds are not earmarked for any specific programs, allowing cities and towns to choose how they would like to spend the funds. In FY12, the city of Westfield received $4,939,735 in Unrestricted General Government Aid (a combination of Lottery Aid and Additional Assistance). In FY13 (which closes on June 30, 2013), Westfield will receive $5,324,736. Improved Lottery revenues contribute to the increase in local aid/UGGA funds. You can find historic local aid figures on the DOR’s website by clicking on the Cherry Sheet for any given year for Westfield.  http://www.mass.gov/dor/local-officials/municipal-data-and-financial-management/cherry-sheets/

Good morning! I’m driving down downtown Westfield today and I’ll tell you: it looks super-super. The roads are nice and smooth, the lighting is awesome, the flowers are starting to turn green in the Park Square… it really and truly looks stunning. I hope that we can continue our growth pattern, our pattern concerning how great it looks to our eyes. City of Westfield: you should be very, very proud of yourself. Do your homework. Do things right. Add as many possible new types of businesses and we can be very, very lucky, if – I know we’ll turn it around. I know we’ll turn it around. Thank you very much for your time.

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