BOSTON – The Senate has passed a four-year, $1.7 billion Environmental Bond Bill with multiple initiatives by Senator Brian A. Joyce. The legislation will invest in tree plantings to promote energy savings and stormwater mitigation, reduce energy consumption at state sites to save taxpayer money, support Massachusetts’ Green Bonds Program, and invest in a Water Infrastructure Trust Fund to support a growing economy.
“The environmental bond bill offers us an opportunity to continue our state’s leadership in energy efficiency, to promote clean and alternative forms of energy and, by funding a water innovation trust fund, to allow us to partner with our fine universities and the private sector to develop leading edge clean water technology that will create jobs,” said Joyce.
Massachusetts is the first in the nation to offer Green Bonds, which have attracted bids from 154 retail investors, including orders from 7 new investors. The program, administered by the Treasury, goes toward clean drinking water projects, energy efficiency and conservation in state buildings, river revitalization and habitat restoration projects, and more.
Additionally, Massachusetts is now home to nearly 300 water industry companies, organizations and institutions that create local jobs in a global market estimated to generate nearly $4 billion in annual revenues. Support for a water infrastructure innovation trust fund outlined in the bill will help foster new innovation and drive economic development and job growth in this industry.
The Senate Committee on Bonding chaired by Joyce again reduced the terms of the bonds which will save taxpayers millions of dollars. This year, the Senate’s reduction of bond terms authored by Joyce over the multiple bills before the Legislature will save Massachusetts taxpayers over one billion dollars.