Republican Gov. Charlie Baker's administration has released $100 million, much of it targeted for human services programs, six months after the heavily Democratic Legislature mandated the spending.
Baker had made no secret of his fiscal austerity plan, saying in October he would not release money designated by legislators for specific purposes until he was confident tax revenues were meeting projections to balance the $40 billion state budget.
Baker's budget aides told The Boston Globe on Tuesday that Baker felt comfortable spending the money now because December tax collections were strong.
The refusal to release the money had created anxiety among advocates for some of the state's neediest residents.
Baker had also been criticized by Democratic lawmakers.
Democratic House Speaker Robert DeLeo said Tuesday he was "pleased" the money was released.