Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives
in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same,
SECTION 1. It is hereby declared essential that the town of Foxborough, for the benefit of the people of said town, shall continue to maintain economical and efficient sewer and water systems; that said town be provided a means to improve its water and sewer services operated in a modern, efficient, financially self-sustaining, and environmentally sound manner; that just, equitable and sufficient fees, rates and charges for water and sewer service within the town be established and all consumers, public and private, taxpayer and tax exempt, pay their fair share of the costs of such services; all to the public benefit and good, as and to the extent and in the manner provided herein. This act may be referred to and cited as the Foxborough Water and Sewer Reorganization Act of 1986.
SECTION 2. As used in this act the following words shall, unless the context requires otherwise, have the following meanings:-
"Sewer works system" The existing sewer works system in the possession of and under the jurisdiction, ownership, control and regulations of the town, and all facilities, betterments, extensions, improvements, enlargements thereto hereafter constructed or acquired.
"Water works system" The existing water supply and distribution system in the possession of and under the jurisdiction, ownership, control, and regulation of the town and its board of water commissioners, and all facilities, betterments, extensions, improvements and enlargements thereto hereafter constructed or acquired.
"Town" The town of Foxborough.
SECTION 3. There is hereby created the Foxborough board of water and sewer commissioners hereinafter called the board. Except as otherwise provided in this act, the powers of the board and the water and sewer department shall be exercised by a board consisting of three members. The initial three members shall be appointed by the board of selectmen who shall appoint the then three members of the board of water commissioners to serve as the board of water and sewer commissioners. Such persons shall be appointed for terms which shall expire at the times that said persons terms as members of the water commission were to expire. Thereafter, members of the board of water and sewer commissioners shall be elected by ballot at the annual town election next after such initial appointments, with each commissioner to be elected for a term of three years.
SECTION 4. The board shall appoint, employ and determine the duties and conditions of employment of a superintendent and such other employees and consultants as the board may deem necessary, subject to the applicable laws of the town and commonwealth. All appropriations for wages and salaries of personnel, and the establishment or amendment of a wage and salary classification plan, shall be subject to the provisions of the town personnel by-law. The superintendent shall be the chief executive officer of the water and sewer department and shall administer and direct its affairs as authorized or approved by the board and shall have such powers and perform such duties of the department as the board may from time to time delegate to him and not recall. The department and its employees shall be subject to the provisions of chapter one hundred and fifty E of the General Laws, to the extent that said provisions are applicable. For the purpose of said chapter one hundred and fifty E, and without otherwise limiting the generality of the foregoing, the town shall be considered an "employer" or "public employer" as defined therein. The department shall operate on the same fiscal year as the town of Foxborough and subject to what sums of money the town shall vote, for such purposes as the town may vote, at either an annual or special town meeting, to raise and appropriate or transfer from available funds to pay interest and maturing debts; for charges, expenses, outlays; for a reserve fund. The water and sewer department shall operate on a fiscal self-sustaining basis, with annual user charges and other revenue adjusted annually, if required, to equal annual expenditures.
SECTION 5. The board shall assume all of the rights, duties and obligations of the town's board of selectmen acting in its capacity as sewer commissioners and the town's board of water commissioners. It shall assume the care, custody, and control for all property, personal or real, which on the effective date of this act resides in the care, custody, and control of the aforesaid board of selectmen acting in its capacity as sewer commissioners and board of water commissioners. All orders, rules, regulations and by-laws duly promulgated by the town or the aforesaid board of selectmen and board of water commissioners shall remain in full force and effect, to the extent consistent with this act, until superseded, revised or rescinded by the board or town as applicable. All contracts, including collective bargaining agreements, intermunicipal agreements, leases and agreements, including interdepartmental agreements, pertaining to the sewer and water works systems shall continue in full force and effect until their expiration dates or as otherwise provided in such documents. All benefits and obligations thereunder, and all other rights and benefits pertaining to the sewer and water works systems including, without limiting the generality of the foregoing, all rights, benefits and obligations not inconsistent with the provisions of this act, which pertain to the sewer and water works systems and which are vested in the aforesaid board of selectmen acting in its capacity as sewer commissioners and board of water commissioners, by general or special law, shall be transferred to, assumed by and imposed upon the board by operation of law.
SECTION 6. This act shall be submitted to an annual or special town meeting for acceptance, and if accepted, shall be effective upon the date of appointment of the board of sewer and water commissioners by the board of selectmen as provided in section three hereof. Said appointment shall be made within thirty days of town meeting acceptance. On the effective date of this act, employees in the existing Foxborough water commission shall be transferred to the new water and sewer department and become employees of said department, subject to the provisions of this act; and the existing Foxborough board of water commissioners shall be abolished. The terms of office of such employees shall not be deemed to be interrupted by such transfer. The rights, seniority, wages, salaries, hours and working conditions of such employees, including, but only so long as such an employee holds the position which is comparable to the position in which he or she was classified prior to transfer, and rights under chapter thirty-one of the General Laws, shall be preserved in their employment by the department, provided that after such transfer, such employees shall perform their duties subject to the direction, control, and supervision of the board. Nothing in the foregoing shall be construed as a limitation on the powers of the board, subject to the provisions of this act and other applicable laws, to thereafter create, amend or abolish job positions in furtherance of the aforesaid intent of this act to provide the people of the town of Foxborough an efficient, modern and financially self-sustaining sewer and water works system.
SECTION 7. The board shall have all the rights and powers which presently exist and reside in the Foxborough board of selectmen acting in its capacity as sewer commissioners and the board of water commissioners under the General Laws and under applicable special acts, including, without limitation, and as applicable, chapter one hundred and ninety-six of the acts of eighteen hundred and seventy-nine, chapter one hundred and sixty-two of the acts of eighteen hundred and ninety, chapter four hundred and twenty-four of the acts of eighteen hundred and ninety-one, chapter two hundred and thirty-two of the acts of eighteen hundred and ninety-two, chapter three hundred and thirty-nine of the acts of eighteen hundred and ninety-four, chapter two hundred and twenty-two of the acts of eighteen hundred and ninety-seven, chapter three hundred and forty-six of the acts of eighteen hundred and ninety-eight, chapter two hundred and forty-five of the acts of nineteen hundred and eleven, chapter one hundred and seventy-five of the acts of nineteen hundred and thirteen, chapter three hundred and eleven of the acts of nineteen hundred and twenty-five, chapter two hundred and twenty-seven of the acts of nineteen hundred and thirty-one, and chapter one hundred and forty-seven of the acts of nineteen hundred and forty-nine, insofar as these do not conflict with the provisions of this act.
SECTION 8. Upon the effective date of this act, except as otherwise provided herein, any provisions of any special laws and parts of special laws, and all by-laws and parts of by-laws pertaining to the sewer and water works system, which are inconsistent with the provisions of this act, shall be inoperative and cease to be effective.