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Victory on the Common App in the budget!!

We are sending a brief email today to share a very exciting VICTORY!! We hope you all are staying cool. Our next Coalition meeting will be a special second Tuesday meeting - this Tuesday, August 9 at 10 AM. Here is the Zoom link. 
The Common Application for needs-tested benefits has passed! 
As Coalition members know, on July 27th, the Baker Administration implemented a portion of FY21 and FY22 budget language and began allowing low-income households applying for or renewing MassHealth online to apply for SNAP food benefits at the same time. This is a major step towards closing the SNAP gap. 
Yesterday, the Legislature officially re-enacted language from the FY23 budget that had been amended by the Governor - This language directs the Administration to create a common application for SNAP, MassHealth, cash assistance, childcare and housing subsidies, fuel assistance, and other needs-tested benefits. 
These two actions in tandem represent significant steps toward making benefit programs more efficient and effective, closing participation gaps, and ensuring more residents connect to the programs they desperately need. 
Thank you to so many partners in the Common App Coalition and the SNAP Coalition who have worked on this issue for many years - and a special shout out to the Massachusetts chapter of the National Association of Social Workers, who co-chairs the Common App Coalition with MLRI. 
We are also immensely grateful to the leaders in our legislature who made this possible and prioritized getting this over the finish line. Please thank Senator Sal DiDomenico and Representative Jay Livingstone for their work championing the need for a Common App, along with Senate President Karen Spilka, Speaker Ron Mariano, Senate Ways and Means Chair Michael Rodrigues, and House Ways and Means Chair Representative Michlewitz. 
Last but not least! Pat is on vacation this week, so I will take this opportunity to share a heartfelt thank you to Pat for her longstanding and unwavering advocacy to close the SNAP gap and move a Common Application forward. 
For more information, MLRI and NASW-MA's press release is attached and posted here.
We look forward to working with you all on implementation of a simple, accessible Common App with the next administration - but that is a conversation for another day! For today, we celebrate! Yay! 
File Attachment: 
PDF icon MLRI_Press_Release_re_Common_Apps.pdf591.54 KB