SECTION 1. The Massachusetts General Laws are hereby amended by inserting the following new chapter: An Act to Improve the Functioning of Various Boards and Commissions.
1.) The Office of Boards and Commissions, within the Executive Office for Administration and Finance, shares, and helps perform, the important tasks related to filling appointments, in over 700 Boards and Commissions. While the performance, has improved, there are certain additional abilities, that can be added, in order to improve the filling of appointments, the renewal of appointments, and the more complete membership of especially important bodies. This legislation is created, to add these powers, and opportunities, to The Office of Boards and Commissions.
2.) Whereas, the various Boards, and Commissions, of Massachusetts, have been created over time, to accomplish a variety of public tasks, and decisions, in a manner that allows informed consideration, deliberation, and decision making.
3.) Whereas, a large and persistent problem has continued, of the nature that members, and memberships of many of the said Boards, and Commissions, have failed of renewal, appointment, and/or reappointment, often leaving boards absent of quorums, and/or ability to make legally binding decisions.
4.) Therefore, this legislation sets the following requirements, in order to improve the functioning of boards, and commissions:
A general Registry Of Available Volunteer Board and Commission Members, for appointment, shall be created; as a mechanism to recruit individuals capable of service on such bodies. This Registry will engage in regular and suitable publicity, and recruitment activities, through all forms of media, printed, electronic, and social media, seeking competent professionals, talented career individuals, and general citizens, with both specific and general skills. These publicity efforts should include, regular News Releases, and Public Service Announcements (PSAs) for general distribution.
As individuals are identified, suitable personnel screenings, shall be conducted, to establish eligibility for this Registry.
Once individuals are determined to be qualified for various bodies, they may be identified, also, as particularly qualified, for particular bodies.
As this roster is compiled for the Registry, it should be updated on a yearly basis.
All winning, and losing, candidates for any elected public office in Massachusetts, shall be contacted, and may be included in such a list(s) of potential appointees, since they, by being candidates for public office, have indicated an interest in aspects of public service.
All members, of all existing Boards and Commissions, shall be annually queried by postal mail, and other means, as to the continuing nature of their activity as a member, their interest in remaining as a member, such thoughts as they may have in the continuation of their service, and of the Board, or Commission, of which they are a member; and also ideas about effective recruitment of members such as themselves.
In the cases of those Boards, and Commissions, which intersect with, or relate to decision making on the licensure, or the determination of conduct of professional paid activities, employment, or activities; and meeting at least every three (3) months, a nominal stipend of three (3) hours per meeting, of the equivalent value of the Minimum Wage, may be compensated to members, if so authorized by the General Court.
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