Skip to Content
The 191st General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

AN ACT ADDING A FIFTH MEMBER TO THE BOARD OF ELECTIONS COMMISSION IN THE CITY OF EVERETT.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:

SECTION 1.  Subsection (a) of section 7-3 of the charter of the city of Everett, which is on file in the office of the archivist of the commonwealth, as provided in section 12 of chapter 43B of the General Laws, is hereby amended by striking out the words, “registrars of voters” and inserting in place thereof the following words:- board of election commissioners.

SECTION 2.  Subsection (c) of section 8-2 of said charter is hereby amended by striking out the words “registrars of voters”, each time they appear, and inserting in place thereof, in each instance, the following words:- board of election commissioners.

SECTION 3.  Said subsection (c) of said section 8-2 of said charter is hereby further amended by striking out the words “registrars of voters” and inserting in place thereof the following words:- board of election commissioners.

SECTION 4.  Subsection (b) of section 8-5 of said charter is hereby amended by striking out the last sentence and inserting in place thereof the following sentence:- The city clerk shall immediately submit the petition to the board of election commissioners and the board shall, within 5 working days, certify thereon the number of signatures that are names of voters.

SECTION 5.  (a) Notwithstanding section 16A of chapter 51 of the General Laws, the charter of the city of Everett or any general or special law to the contrary, there shall be in the city of Everett a board of election commissioners. The board shall have all the powers, rights, duties and liabilities under the General Laws of a board of registrars of voters, including creation of street and voters lists, caucuses, primaries and elections, and all the powers, rights, duties and liabilities of a city clerk with respect to elections, except for the power and duty of giving notice of elections, fixing the days and hours of holding elections, preparing initiative and referendum petitions as provided in the city charter and as otherwise provided in this act.

(b)  The board of election commissioners shall consist of 5 members, 1 of whom shall be the city clerk of the city of Everett, who shall serve in an ex officio capacity with a voice and a vote in all matters within the jurisdiction of the board, and 4 of whom shall be appointed by the mayor, subject to confirmation by the city council, in accordance with section 3-3 of the charter, so that as nearly as possible the members of the board represent the 2 leading political parties as defined in section 1 of chapter 50 of the General Laws; provided, however, that if the city clerk is enrolled in a political party as defined in said section 1 of said chapter 50 or for purposes of section 12 of chapter 4 of the General Laws, 1 appointee to the board shall be unenrolled. If a change in the enrollment of the city clerk creates an imbalance in the representation of the leading political parties on the board, 1 member enrolled in the over-represented party shall resign or, if no such member resigns, 1 such member may be removed by the mayor at the mayor’s sole discretion.

The members shall receive such compensation as the mayor and city council may determine. The board shall organize annually by selecting a chair, vice-chair and a clerk. If the members are unable to select an officer, that officer shall be designated by the mayor. The clerk shall keep a full and accurate record of the proceedings of the board.

(c)  To assist the board of election commissioners, the mayor may appoint assistant commissioners who shall have the powers granted to assistant registrars of voters by chapter 51 of the General Laws and shall perform such duties as are requested by the board. The city clerk shall provide administrative and operational support to the board and shall serve as the department head for the board; provided, however, that the mayor may appoint an executive director of the board of election commissioners to be responsible for management and supervision of election-related functions and responsibilities.

SECTION 6.  On the effective date of this act, the board of registrars of voters of the city of Everett shall be abolished and the terms of the incumbent members of the board of registrars terminated; provided, however, that the incumbent members of the board of registrars shall become the first members of the board of election commissioners of the city of Everett and shall serve for a period equivalent to the remainder of their appointed terms or their earlier vacating of office and until their successors are appointed and qualified. The mayor shall immediately make such additional appointments to the board of election commissioners consistent with the requirements for appointment as set forth in subsection (b) of section 5.

SECTION 7.  Immediately upon the effective date of this act, the books, papers, records and all other property in the possession of the board of registrars of voters of the city of Everett relating to the conduct of elections and all contractual obligations and rights of the board of registrars shall pass by operation of law to the newly formed board of election commissioners. The board of election commissioners shall be the lawful successor to the board of registrars and, with respect to elections, the city clerk, except as otherwise provided in this act.

SECTION 8.  This act shall take effect upon its passage.

Approved, December 6, 2018.