BARRE, Vt. — Vermont legislators have approved appropriations to expand homeless services in anticipation of the colder winter months.

The Barre-Montpelier Times Argus reports (http://bit.ly/2u7iOp0 ) the Legislature approved $300,000 to add 40 beds to the Good Samaritan Haven homeless shelter in Barre. Additional funding will go toward expanding services in Barre and Rutland.

Brooke Jenkins, Good Samaritan Haven shelter director, says the appropriation will help decrease money spent on hotel vouchers. She says the shelter is usually filled between November and April.

State Rep. Mary Hooper says while the funding supports temporary housing, it will help connect the homeless with services to guide them into permanent housing.

Jenkins and other advocates say shelters help the homeless find affordable housing, mental health and disability services.