Chapter 40 of the General Laws is hereby amended by inserting after section 32B the following section:-
Section 32C. Each city and town in the commonwealth shall make available online, on the city or town website, a complete and updated version of the city or town ordinances and by-laws, including the zoning ordinances and by-laws. The online ordinances and by-laws shall be in a format that is easily accessible to the public at no charge.
Each city and town in the commonwealth shall also make a complete and updated version of the city or town ordinances and by-laws, including the zoning ordinances and by-laws available for viewing upon request by the public at the Principal Municipal building. The municipality may elect to provide access to the public in either a paper format or a format viewable by an electronic device located within the principal municipal building. The Municipality shall provide paper copies of ordinances as requested and may charge copying fees as allowed by law.
Any citizen of the Commonwealth alleging a violation of this section may file a written complaint with the city or town requesting compliance. The city or town shall, within 10 business days of receipt of a complaint, send written notification to the complainant and the attorney general of proof of compliance or any remedial action taken to bring the city or town into compliance. If the city or town does not comply with this section and notify the complainant and the attorney general of such compliance within 10 business days after receipt of the complaint, the complainant may file a written complaint with the attorney general, including the original written complaint filed with the city or town. Upon the receipt of a complaint pursuant to this section, the attorney general shall determine, in a timely manner, whether there has been a violation of this section. The attorney general may, and before imposing any civil penalty on a municipality shall, hold a hearing on any such complaint. Upon a finding of a violation of this section and a failure to take remedial action within 10 business days of receipt of the complaint, the attorney general shall impose a civil penalty of not more than $1,000 for each such violation, and shall issue an order to compel immediate and future compliance with this section. The attorney general may, without holding additional hearings, impose additional civil penalties of not more than $1,000 for each additional 10 day period after the issuance of such order unless and until the city or town is found to be in compliance with this section.
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