Massachusetts OKs funds to offset Planned Parenthood losses

BOSTON (AP) — Massachusetts has become the first state to approve money to offset the potential loss of federal funding to women’s reproductive health organizations since the Trump administration adopted a new rule meant to ban federally funded family planning clinics from making abortion referrals.

The Massachusetts law sets aside $8 million in state dollars to close any gaps in federal Title X funding for health clinics that could lose funding by the proposed change — adopted by the administration in February and derided as a “gag rule” by critics.

Republican Gov. Charlie Baker becomes the first governor to sign such legislation.

Maryland passed a similar law in 2017 to protect funding for Planned Parenthood in anticipation of the rule. That bill became law in 2017 without Republican Gov. Larry Hogan’s signature.

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