Section 9N: State advisory council; board of review
Section 9N. (a) There shall be in the department of unemployment assistance, but not subject to the control of the director of unemployment assistance, a state advisory council of six members, citizens of the commonwealth, to be appointed by the governor. Two of said members shall be persons who, because of their vocations, employments, occupations or affiliations, can be classed as employers; two shall be persons who, for like reasons, can be classed as employees from a list of 3 persons recommended by the president of the Massachusetts AFL-CIO; and two shall be persons representative of the public. The governor shall from time to time designate as chairman one of the members who was appointed as representative of the public. Of the members originally appointed, one of each of the aforesaid groups shall be chosen for a term of four years, and one of each group for a term of six years; and thereafter as their terms expire the governor shall appoint members for terms of six years. Vacancies shall be filled by appointment by the governor, with like advice and consent, for the remainder of the unexpired term. All members shall serve until the qualification of their respective successors. Each of the members of the council shall receive the sum of forty dollars as compensation for each day's attendance at meetings of the council; provided, that the total amount paid hereunder to any such member shall not exceed twenty-four hundred dollars in any period of twelve months. The council shall meet at least once a month, but not more than sixty times a year. Members of the council shall receive their traveling and other necessary expenses incurred in the performance of their duties. The director of unemployment assistance shall provide for the council suitable quarters and such clerical and other assistance as the council may deem necessary. Said offices and the incumbents thereof shall not be subject to chapter thirty-one and the rules and regulations made thereunder.
The state advisory council shall serve as the nominating panel for the board of review established pursuant to subsection (b). Before any submission of nominations for appointment or reappointment to the board of review, the advisory council shall review applications for such nominations and consider the following factors:
(1) skills in fact-finding;
(2) demonstrated basic understanding of the unemployment insurance law; and
(3) a bachelor's degree or demonstrated writing ability as evidenced by at least 4 years in positions in which writing skills are a major job responsibility.
The review shall be made on the basis of the application, experience, education and training of the applicant, writing samples, interviews, and any other information the panel may require. When the application is for reappointment, the panel shall review, in addition to any other information, the performance since the candidate's appointment including, but not limited to:
(1) three decisions written and selected by the applicant;
(2) where applicable, the total number of cases decided by the applicant heard by an appellate body, and the number of those cases which were remanded for further proceedings;
(3) any decisions of an appellate body which specifically reference the candidate's demeanor or temperament;
(4) at the discretion of the director, written complaints from attorneys received by the director regarding the candidate's demeanor or temperament; and
(5) evidence of any demonstrable bias against particular defendants, claimants or attorneys.
The state advisory council shall rate the candidate as highly qualified, qualified or unqualified.
Any information regarding a candidate compiled by the state advisory council or the director shall be forwarded to the governor.
(b) There shall be in the department a board of review consisting of 3 persons to be appointed by the governor, with the advice and consent of the council. Nominees to the board of review shall be selected from a list submitted to the governor by the state advisory council. Of the members first appointed, 1 shall be appointed for a term of 2 years, 1 for a term of 4 years and 1 for a term of 6 years and thereafter, as the term of a member expires, his successor shall be appointed for a term of 6 years. Vacancies shall be filled in like manner for the remainder of an unexpired term. All members shall serve until the qualification of their respective successors. The governor shall from time to time designate 1 of the members as chairman; provided, however, that the member designated as chairman shall be an attorney. The offices and the incumbents thereof shall not be subject to chapter 31 and the rules and regulations thereunder. The positions of chairman and each of the other members of the board shall be classified in accordance with section 45 of chapter 30 and the salaries shall be determined in accordance with section 46C of said chapter 30 and each member shall devote his full time during business hours to the duties of his office. Members of the board shall receive their traveling and other necessary expenses incurred in the performance of their duties.