The yearly budget for the Department of Higher Education and the community colleges, state universities and UMass system is determined by the process laid out below. Click on the buttons for details on the FY18 budget for Massachusetts public higher education, and go to mass.gov for more information on the statewide budget.
December 6, 2016— The Massachusetts Board of Higher Education issues its funding recommendations to the Executive Office of Education.
January 25, 2017— The budget begins as a bill that the Governor submits to the House of Representatives.
Expected April 2017— The House Ways and Means Committee reviews the Governor's budget and then develops its own recommendation. Once debated, amended and voted on by the full House, it becomes the final House budget bill and moves to the Senate.
Expected May 2017— The Senate Ways and Means Committee reviews the Governor's budget and then develops its own recommendation. Once debated, amended and voted on by the full Senate, it becomes the final Senate budget bill.
Expected June 2017— House and Senate leadership assign members to a "Conference Committee" to negotiate the differences between the House and Senate bills. The conference committee report can only be approved or rejected - no additional amendments can be made.
Once approved by both chambers of the Legislature, the Governor has ten days to review the Conference Committee budget. The Governor may approve or veto the entire budget, or may veto or reduce particular line items or sections, but may not add anything. Then, the House and Senate may vote to override the Governor's vetoes. Overrides require a two-thirds roll-call vote in each chamber.
July 1, 2017— The final budget, also known as the General Appropriations Act (GAA), goes into effect on July 1, 2017 when the 2018 Fiscal Year begins.