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SENATE DOCKET, NO. 873        FILED ON: 1/17/2013

SENATE  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  No. 982


The Commonwealth of Massachusetts



Daniel A. Wolf, (BY REQUEST)


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 amend the Barnstable County home rule charter by adding a recall provision .






Ronald Beaty

245 Parker Road
West Barnstable, MA 02668

SENATE DOCKET, NO. 873        FILED ON: 1/17/2013

SENATE  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  No. 982

By Mr. Wolf (by request), a petition (accompanied by bill, Senate, No. 982) of Ronald Beaty  for legislation to amend the Barnstable County home rule charter by adding a recall provision.  Municipalities and Regional Government. 


The Commonwealth of Massachusetts



In the Year Two Thousand Thirteen



An Act to amend the Barnstable County home rule charter by adding a recall provision .


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

              The following section amends, by insertion, Article 7 of Chapter 163 of the Acts of 1988

              Section 7-7. Recall of County Officers

              (1) Application – Any person who holds an elected county office, with more than six months 

              remaining of the term of office at the time of the filing of the application, may be recalled from 

              the office by the voters in the manner provided in this section. 6

              (2) Recall Petitions – If the officer is elected from the county at large, one hundred and fifty or 

              more voters may file with the county clerk an affidavit containing the name of the officer whose 

              recall is sought and a statement of the grounds for recall; if the officer is elected from any 

              municipality into which the county is divided the signatures on such petitions shall contain the

              names of at least twenty-five voters from the said municipality. The petitions relating to an

              officer elected from the county at large shall contain the names of at least twenty-five voters in

              each of any six municipalities within the county. When submitted to the county clerk the

              signatures shall bear the certification of the registrars of voters of the municipality in which

              collected that they are the names of voters in said municipality.

              Within seven days following receipt the county clerk shall certify such petitions with regard to 

              the sufficiency and validity and shall thereupon deliver to the ten persons first named on such

              petitions, petition blanks demanding said recall, printed forms of which the county clerk shall 

              keep available. The blanks may be completed by printing or typewriting; they shall be

              addressed  to the assembly of delegates; they shall contain the names of the ten persons to

              whom they are  issued and the grounds for recall as stated in the affidavit; they shall demand the

              election of a  successor to the office; they shall be dated and signed by the county clerk. The

              recall petitions shall be returned to the office of the county clerk within twenty days following the

              date they are issued, signed by at least fifteen percent of the total number of persons registered

              to vote in the county as of the date of the most recent state election if the officer is elected at

              large and by fifteen percent of the total number of persons registered to vote in the municipality

              as of the date of the most recent state election if the officer is elected from a municipality. 

              The county clerk shall within three days following such filing, submit the petitions to the board 

              of registrars of voters in the several municipalities from which collected which boards of 

              registrars of voters shall within five days thereafter certify thereon the number of signatures 

              which are the names of voters. 

              (3) Recall Elections – The county clerk shall review the petitions as certified by the registrars of 

              voters of the several municipalities and if the county clerk determines that collectively the 

              petitions are sufficient, the county clerk shall forthwith submit the same with a certificate so 

              stating to the assembly of delegates. Upon its receipt of the certified petition, the assembly of 

              delegates shall forthwith give notice, in writing, of said petition to the officer whose recall is 

              sought. If said officer does not resign from office within five days following delivery of the said 

              notice, the assembly of delegates shall order a special election to be held not less than ninety nor 

              more than one hundred twenty days after the date of the certification of the county clerk that the 

              petition is sufficient; provided, however, if a regular biennial state election is to be held within 

              one hundred fifty days of such certification the recall election shall be held in conjunction 

              therewith and no special election shall be held. If a vacancy occurs in the office after a recall 

              election has been ordered, the election shall nevertheless proceed as provided in this section, but  only the ballots for candidates need be counted. 

              (4) Nomination of Candidates – An officer sought to be recalled may not be a candidate to be

              elected to the same office if the vote on the recall is in the affirmative. The nomination of other

              candidates, the publication of the warrant for the recall election, and the conduct of the same

              shall be in conformity with the provisions of law relating to county elections generally, unless

              otherwise provided in this section.

              (5) Propositions on the Ballot – Ballots used at the recall election shall state the proposition in

              the order indicated:

              For the recall of (name of officer)

              Against the recall of (name of officer)

              Adjacent to each proposition shall be a place to vote for either of said propositions. After the

              said proposition shall appear the words "candidates" and the names of candidates arranged by a

              lottery drawn by the county clerk. If a majority of the votes cast is in favor of the recall, and

              provided at least twenty five percent of the total number of voters as of the date of the most 

              recent biennial state election have participated at such recall election, the officer shall be deemed

              to be recalled and the ballots for candidates shall then be counted and the candidate receiving

              the highest number of votes shall be declared elected.

              (6) Officeholder – The incumbent shall continue to hold office and perform the duties until the

              recall election. If not then recalled, the officer shall continue in office for the remainder of the

              unexpired term, subject to recall as provided in section (7) below.

              If the officer is recalled, the office shall be deemed vacant upon the certification of the election

              results. The candidate who receives the highest number of votes shall serve for the balance of

              the unexpired term.

              (7) Repeat of Recall Petition – No recall shall be filed against an officer within six months after

              taking office, or in the case of an officer subjected to a recall election and not recalled thereby,

              until at least six months after the election at which the recall was submitted to the voters.

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