SENATE DOCKET, NO. 2160        FILED ON: 1/6/2012

SENATE  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  No. 2124


The Commonwealth of Massachusetts



Richard T. Moore


To the Honorable Senate and House of Representatives of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in General
Court assembled:

The undersigned legislators and/or citizens respectfully petition for the adoption of the accompanying bill:

An Act to reduce the property tax liability in exchange for volunteer service for veterans.






Richard T. Moore


Kenneth J. Donnelly


John Hart, Jr.


Michael O. Moore


Benjamin B. Downing

Berkshire, Hampshire, Franklin and Hampden

Sal N. DiDomenico

Middlesex and Suffolk

Michael R. Knapik


Barry R. Finegold


James B. Eldridge


Susan C. Fargo


Kimberly N. Ferguson

1st Worcester

James M. Cantwell

4th Plymouth

James J. Dwyer

30th Middlesex

Cory Atkins

14th Middlesex

Geraldine M. Creedon

11th Plymouth

John H. Rogers

12th Norfolk

Peter J. Durant

6th Worcester

Randy Hunt

5th Barnstable

James E. Timilty


Thomas M. McGee

Third Essex

Brian A. Joyce

Norfolk, Bristol and Plymouth

Marc R. Pacheco


Richard J. Ross

Norfolk, Bristol and Middlesex

Paul McMurtry

11th Norfolk

Todd M. Smola

1st Hampden

Stephen L. DiNatale

3rd Worcester

Jason M. Lewis

31st Middlesex

John V. Fernandes

10th Worcester

Gailanne M. Cariddi

1st Berkshire

Christopher G. Fallon

33rd Middlesex

James R. Miceli

19th Middlesex

Walter F. Timilty

7th Norfolk

Bradley H. Jones, Jr.

20th Middlesex

Dennis A. Rosa

4th Worcester

David M. Nangle

17th Middlesex

Marc T. Lombardo

22nd Middlesex

Shaunna O'Connell

3rd Bristol

Kevin J. Kuros

8th Worcester

Ryan C. Fattman

18th Worcester

David B. Sullivan

6th Bristol

Carolyn C. Dykema

8th Middlesex

Denise C. Garlick

13th Norfolk

Geoff Diehl

7th Plymouth

Louis L. Kafka

8th Norfolk

George T. Ross

2nd Bristol

Matthew A. Beaton

11th Worcester

David M. Torrisi

14th Essex

Robert M. Koczera

11th Bristol

Mark C. Montigny


SENATE DOCKET, NO. 2160        FILED ON: 1/6/2012

SENATE  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  No. 2124

By Mr. Moore, a petition (subject to Joint Rule 12 and Senate Rule 20) (accompanied by bill, Senate, No. 2124) of Richard T. Moore, Kenneth J. Donnelly, John Hart, Jr., Michael O. Moore and other members of the General Court for legislation relative to reduction of property tax liability for veterans.  Revenue.


The Commonwealth of Massachusetts



In the Year Two Thousand Twelve



An Act to reduce the property tax liability in exchange for volunteer service for veterans.


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.  Chapter 59 of the general laws, as appearing in the 2010 Official Edition, is hereby amended by inserting after Section 5M, the following new section:-

Section 5N. In any city or town which accepts the provisions of this section, the board of selectmen of a town or in a municipality having a town council form of government, the town council or the mayor with the approval of the city council in a city may establish a program to allow persons who are veterans, as defined in clause forty-third of section 7 of chapter 4, to volunteer to provide services to such city or town.  In exchange for such volunteer services, the city or town shall reduce the real property tax obligations of such veteran on his tax bills and any reduction so provided shall be in addition to any exemption or abatement to which any such person is otherwise entitled and no such person shall receive a rate of, or be credited with, more than the current minimum wage of the commonwealth per hour for services provided pursuant to such reduction nor shall the reduction of the real property tax bill exceed $750 in a given tax year.  It shall be the responsibility of the city or town to maintain a record for each taxpayer including, but not limited to, the number of hours of service and the total amount by which the real property tax has been reduced and to provide a copy of such record to the assessor in order that the actual tax bill reflect the reduced rate.  A copy of such record shall also be provided to the taxpayer prior to the issuance of the actual tax bill.  Such cities and towns shall have the power to create local rules and procedures for implementing this section in any way consistent with the intent of this section.

In no instance shall the amount by which a person's property tax liability is reduced in exchange for the provision of services be considered income, wages, or employment for purposes of taxation as provided in chapter 62, for the purposes of withholding taxes as provided in chapter 62B, for the purposes of workers' compensation as provided in chapter 152 or any other applicable provisions of the general laws, but such person while providing such services shall be considered a public employee for the purposes of chapter 258, but such services shall be deemed employment for the purposes of unemployment insurance as provided in chapter 151A.

A city or town, by vote of its legislative body, subject to its charter, may adjust the exemption in this clause by: (1) allowing an approved representative, for persons physically unable, to provide such services to the city or town; or (2) allowing the maximum reduction of the real property tax bill to be based on 125 volunteer service hours in a given tax year, rather than $750.