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  • PART I ADMINISTRATION OF THE GOVERNMENT
  • TITLE IV CIVIL SERVICE, RETIREMENTS AND PENSIONS
  • CHAPTER 32 RETIREMENT SYSTEMS AND PENSIONS
  • Section 20 Administration by boards

Section 20. (1) State Employees’ Retirement System. — (a) The contributory retirement system for state employees shall be known as the “state employees’ retirement system” and all of its business shall be transacted under such name.

(b) The state employees’ retirement system shall be managed by the state board of retirement provided for in section eighteen of chapter ten. Said board shall have the general powers and duties set forth in subdivision (5) of this section.

(2) Teachers’ Retirement System. — (a) The contributory retirement system for teachers shall be known as the “teachers’ retirement system” and all of its business shall be transacted under such name.

(b) The teachers’ retirement system shall be managed by the teachers’ retirement board provided for in section sixteen of chapter fifteen. Such board shall have the general powers and duties set forth in subdivision (5) of this section.

(c) Whenever, after July first, nineteen hundred and fourteen, any city or town, except the city of Boston, retires a teacher who is not eligible for a pension payable by the teachers’ retirement system under the provisions of sections one to twenty-eight, inclusive, or under corresponding provisions of earlier laws, and pays to such teacher a pension in accordance with the provisions of section forty-three, or chapter five hundred and eighty-nine of the acts of nineteen hundred and eight and acts in amendment thereof, or chapter five hundred and twenty-one of the acts of nineteen hundred and twenty-two and acts in amendment thereof, and the chairman or secretary of the school committee of such city or town certifies under oath to the teachers’ retirement board the amount of such pension paid during any period prior to the immediately preceding July first for which reimbursement has not been made and furnishes such other information as the latter board may require, such city or town shall be reimbursed therefor by the commonwealth; provided, that no such reimbursement shall be granted unless such retirement has been approved by the latter board; and provided, that the amount of such reimbursement shall in no event be in excess of the amount, as determined by the latter board, to which such teacher would have been entitled as a pension had he been a member of the teachers’ retirement system. In its annual report the teachers’ retirement board shall include a statement of the amount expended prior to the immediately preceding July first by each city and town in the payment of pensions under this paragraph, for which such cities and towns have not received and should receive reimbursement. On the basis of such statement, the general court may make an appropriation for the reimbursement of such cities and towns up to such preceding July first.

(3) Systems for Counties. — (a) The contributory retirement system established in any county under the provisions of sections one to twenty-eight inclusive, or under corresponding provisions of earlier laws, shall be known and all of its business shall be transacted under a name which shall be designated by the board of such system and which shall include in its designation the name of such county.

(b) Each such county system shall be managed by a retirement board which shall have the general powers and duties set forth in subdivision (5). Said board shall consist of five members as follows: the county treasurer, but if there is no county treasurer the director of finance, who shall be a member ex officio and serve as chairman; a second member appointed by the county commissioners; two members hereinafter referred to as the elected members; and one member of the county retirement board advisory council who shall be elected by a majority of those present and voting at a public meeting of said council, properly posted, called specifically for such election pursuant to paragraph (g). The election of the elected member shall be conducted in accordance with the provisions of paragraph (h).

The elected member shall be an active or retired member of the county retirement system or one whose retirement is being reimbursed by that system in accordance with the provisions of paragraph (c) of subdivision (8) of section three. Each member of the board shall continue to serve in office until the expiration of his term, and the qualification of his successor. Upon the expiration of the term of office of any elected or appointed member, or in the event of a vacancy in either of said offices, his successor shall be elected as aforesaid for a term of three years, or for the unexpired portion thereof, as the case may be.

(c) The members of the board of any such county system shall serve without compensation, but they shall be reimbursed for any expense or loss of salary or wages which they may incur through service on such board from the expense fund of the system. Nothing in this paragraph shall prevent any county treasurer from being compensated for services rendered in the active administration of the system, in his capacity as county treasurer but not as a member of the board, provided, that such compensation shall not exceed fifteen hundred dollars per annum.

(d) The retirement board chairman shall employ such clerical and other assistants as may be required to transact the business of the county retirement system. All such clerical and other assistants, whether permanent or temporary employees, shall be removed from office only upon the two thirds vote of the county retirement board. The county retirement board shall classify and approve its employees in accordance with the general personnel guidelines and pay scales adopted for county personnel. All permanent employees employed pursuant to this paragraph shall be members of the county retirement system, but shall not be eligible to be a member or candidate for election to the county retirement board.

(e) Any such county retirement board may employ an attorney from time to time as required, but such attorney shall not be a member in service of the system or a member of the retirement board.

(f) The board of any such county system and the treasurer of the county in which it is established shall respectively be and act as the board and treasurer-custodian of such system with respect to the employees of any town or district who become members of such system as provided for in paragraph (3) (b), (3) (c) or (4) (b) of section twenty-eight, or who have become members thereof under corresponding provisions of earlier laws. The treasurer or other disbursing officer of any such town or district, as the case may be, shall act as a liaison officer between the employees thereof and the board of such system.

(g) There shall be a county retirement board advisory council, in this subdivision called the council, consisting of all the treasurers, elected or appointed, of each town, unit or district belonging to the county retirement system and the county treasurer. A chairman shall be elected from among the members. The council shall meet at the call of the chairman, but in no event less than twice in each year. The council shall supervise and certify the procedures involved in the election of the elected member of the county retirement board, as provided in paragraphs (b) and (h). Upon certification by the county retirement board and the council, the actuary of the division of insurance shall be furnished with an estimate of the expenses and costs of administration of the system for the ensuing year. The actuary shall, on or before December fifteenth in each year, specify by written notice to the council and the board the amounts so required to be paid from the pension fund, the annuity reserve fund, the military service fund, and the administration fund, as provided in subdivision (7) of section twenty-two. The actuary shall also advise and determine the amounts to be allocated to each governmental unit for the aforementioned amounts.

The county retirement board advisory council, at a meeting called specifically for that purpose, shall elect one of its members as a member of the county retirement board at the expiration of the current appointed member’s term, as provided in paragraph (b).

(h) The election of the elected member shall be supervised by the county retirement board advisory council, which shall serve as the election board. The council shall make available nomination papers to any member in or retired from service so requesting and shall require that such nomination papers be signed by the candidate, and returned to the office of the county retirement board for safekeeping until the election board shall meet. The county treasurer or his agent shall give a duplicate receipt for such nomination papers to each candidate. Completed nomination papers shall contain the signatures and addresses of at least five active or retired members of said retirement system. The election board shall determine whether each candidate has filed nomination papers containing the signatures and addresses of at least five active or retired members of said system. If, after investigation, the election board determines that a candidate has filed nomination papers containing less than five signatures as required, the election board shall declare said nomination papers invalid and shall notify said candidate of such determination. If, after investigation, the election board determines that only one candidate has filed the requisite number of signatures, the election board shall declare said candidate to be the elected member of the county retirement board. If, after investigation, the election board determines that more than one candidate has obtained the requisite number of valid signatures, the election board shall notify said candidates of such determination and shall immediately prepare election ballots, and set the date for the election, which shall be held within forty days.

The election board shall mail ballots to all members of the retirement system, whether active or retired. The election board shall instruct each member to place an appropriate marking on the face of the printed ballot next to the name of one candidate, insert said ballot into a ballot envelope and said ballot envelope into the prestamped envelope, seal said prestamped envelope and mail said envelope to the election board in care of the county retirement board, within twenty days after they were mailed. Any envelope postmarked later than twenty days after such mailing shall not be used to determine the elected member. The election board shall notify each candidate of the time and location of the tabulation of the ballots and shall permit all such candidates to be present at said tabulation. At the specified time for tabulation, the election board shall assemble all envelopes and inspect said envelopes. Any envelope which has been opened prior to said date, or which has not been signed on the rear by the appropriate addressee shall be invalidated and shall not be used to determine the elected member. The election board shall assemble all properly signed, unopened envelopes and shall open each envelope and separate the enclosed ballot from said envelope. The election board shall assemble all ballots and shall tabulate the vote for each candidate. Any ballot which contains a marking for more than the number of vacancies shall be declared invalid.

The election board shall notify each candidate in writing of the results of said election. All envelopes and ballots received by the election board, including those determined to be invalid, shall be preserved by the election board for two years. The costs incurred by the election board in administering the election shall be paid from the county retirement system administration fund.

(4) Systems for cities and towns. — (a) The contributory retirement system established in any city or town under the provisions of sections one to twenty-eight, inclusive, or under corresponding provisions of earlier laws, shall be known and all of its business shall be transacted under a name which shall be designated by the board of such system and which shall include in its designation the name of such city or town, as the case may be.

(b) Each such city or town system shall be managed by a retirement board which shall have the general powers and duties set forth in subdivision (5). Such board shall consist of five members and shall be chosen in the following manner, except as provided in paragraph (c), the city auditor or town accountant or other officer having similar powers and duties who shall be a member ex officio, a second member appointed by the board of selectmen in a town, the mayor in a city, the city manager in a city having a Plan D or Plan E form of government, a third and fourth member who shall be elected by the members in or retired from service of such system from among their number in such manner and for such term, not exceeding three years, as the mayor in a city or the board of selectmen in a town shall determine, and a fifth member who shall not be an employee, a retiree, or official of the governmental unit and shall be chosen by the other four for a term of three years. If the fifth member is not chosen by the other four members within thirty days after the expiration of the term of the fifth member, said member shall be appointed in a city by the mayor, subject to confirmation by the city council, or in a town by the board of selectmen. Future elections of the third and fourth members shall be held under the supervision of such retirement board and the term of the third and fourth member shall be so arranged as not to expire in the year of expiration of the term of the fifth member.

(c) In any city or town exercising the local option contained in this subsection shall upon the recommendation of the city manager with the approval of the city council or the board of aldermen in a Plan D or Plan E city, or the mayor with the approval of the city council or the board of aldermen in any other city, or board of selectmen with the approval of town meeting in a town may adopt the following method for selection of the members of the retirement board. Such board shall consist of five members and shall be chosen as follows:

The city manager in a Plan D or Plan E city, the mayor in any other city, the board of selectmen in a town shall appoint two members for a period of three years, a third and fourth member who shall be elected by the members in or retired from service of such system from among their number in such manner and for such term, not exceeding three years, as mayor in a city, or city manager in a Plan D or Plan E city, or town council or board of selectmen in a town shall determine. The fifth member shall be appointed by the public employee retirement administration commission after being nominated by the other four members provided, however, in the event said four members cannot agree on such nominee to submit to the commission within ten days, then each member shall within five days submit a list of three names of individuals ready and willing to serve, and the commission shall then appoint the fifth member from such list who shall be a resident of such community and who shall not be a current or former member of the retirement system under this chapter or an official of the governmental unit. Each member of the city or town retirement board provided for in paragraphs (b) and (c) shall continue to hold office until the expiration of his term and until the qualification of his successor. Upon the expiration of the term of office of any elected or appointed member or in case of a vacancy in either of said offices, his successor shall be elected or appointed as aforesaid for a three-year term or for the unexpired portion thereof, as the case may be, except that in no event shall the term of the third and fourth member expire in the same year as the term of the fifth member. The mayor of a city, the board of selectmen of a town under the manager of a municipality having a town council form of government shall notify in writing all heads of departments of such city or town of any such vacancy in said board to be filled by election, and a notice of such vacancy and election shall be posted in a conspicuous place in such city or town.

(d) The members of the board of any such city or town system shall serve without compensation, but they shall be reimbursed from the expense fund of such system for any expense or loss of salary or wages which they may incur through service on such board. Nothing in this paragraph shall prevent any city auditor, town accountant or other officer having similar powers and duties, or any other person who serves in the active administration of the system in lieu of the city auditor, town accountant or other officer having similar powers and duties, from being compensated for services rendered in the active administration of the system; provided, that the compensation for such services shall be not less than two hundred nor more than fifteen hundred dollars per annum, and shall be payable from the expense fund of the system.

(d1/2) Notwithstanding the provisions of paragraph (d), in any city or town which accepts the provisions of this paragraph, nothing shall prevent the city auditor, town accountant or other officer having similar powers and duties or any other person who serves in the active administration of the system in lieu of the city auditor, town accountant or other officer having similar powers and duties being compensated for services rendered in the active administration of the system; provided, that the compensation for such services shall be not less than two hundred nor more than three thousand dollars per annum, and shall be payable from the expense fund of the system.

(e) Each such board by majority vote shall elect one of its members to serve as chairman until the election of his successor and shall appoint a secretary who may be, but need not be, one of its members. The board shall employ such clerical and other assistants as may be required to transact the business of such system.

(f) The city solicitor or town counsel, or other officer having similar powers and duties, shall be the legal adviser of such board, except in such cases as such board deems necessary, it may employ a private attorney whose fees shall be paid from the expense fund of such board. In case there is no town counsel in a town, such board may employ an attorney from time to time as required.

(g) A city or town treasurer, may be compensated for services rendered as custodian of the funds of the retirement system; provided, that the compensation for such services shall be not more than fifteen hundred dollars per annum, and shall be payable from the expense fund of the system.

(h) Notwithstanding the provisions of paragraph (g), in any city or town which accepts the provisions of this paragraph, nothing shall prevent a city or town treasurer from being compensated for services rendered as custodian of the funds of the retirement system; provided, that the compensation for such services shall not be more than three thousand dollars per annum, and shall be payable from the expense fund of the system.

(41/4) (a) The contributory retirement system established for the Massachusetts Housing Finance Agency under the provisions of sections one to twenty-eight, inclusive, shall be known as, and all of its business shall be transacted under the name of, the “Massachusetts Housing Finance Agency Employees’ Retirement System”.

(b) Said system shall be managed by an retirement board which shall have the general powers and duties set forth in subdivision (5). Said board shall consist of five members as follows: the treasurer of the agency who shall be a member ex officio, a second member appointed by the appointing authority of the agency, a third and fourth member who shall be elected by the members in or retired from service of such system from among their number in such manner and for such term, not exceeding three years, as the chairman of the agency shall determine, and a fifth member who shall not be an employee, retiree, or official of the governmental unit and shall be appointed by the other four members for a term of three years. Future elections of the third and fourth members shall be held under the supervision of such retirement board and the term of the third and fourth members shall be so arranged so as not to expire in the year of expiration of the term of the fifth member. Each member of such retirement board shall continue to hold office until the expiration of his term and until the qualification of his successor. Upon the expiration of the term of office of any elected or appointed member or in case of a vacancy in either of said offices, his successor shall be elected or appointed as aforesaid for a three year term or for the unexpired portion thereof, as the case may be, except that in no event shall the term of the third and fourth member expire in the same year as the term of the fifth member.

(c) The members of the board shall serve without compensation, but they shall be reimbursed from the expense fund of the system for any expense or loss of salary or wages which they may incur through service on such board. Nothing in this paragraph shall prevent the treasurer, or any other person who serves in the active administration of the system in lieu of the treasurer, from being compensated for services rendered in the active administration of the system; provided, that the compensation for such services shall be not less than two hundred nor more than fifteen hundred dollars per annum, and shall be payable from the expense fund of the system.

(d) The board by majority vote shall elect one of its members to serve as chairman until the election of his successor and shall appoint a secretary who may be, but need not be, one of its members. The board shall employ such clerical and other assistants as may be required to transact the business of the system.

(e) The resident counsel of the agency shall be the legal advisor of the board.

(f) The treasurer may be compensated for services rendered as custodian of the funds of the retirement system, provided that the compensation for such services shall not be more than fifteen hundred dollars per annum and shall be payable from the expense fund of the system.

[There is no subdivision (41/2).]

(43/4) (a) The contributory retirement system established for the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority police under the provisions of section one to twenty-eight, inclusive, shall be known as, and all of its business shall be transacted under the name of, the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority police retirement system.

(b) Said system shall be managed by an retirement board which shall have the general powers and duties set forth in subdivision (5). Said board shall consist of five members as follows: the treasurer of the authority who shall be a member ex officio, a second member appointed by the appointing authority of the authority, a third and fourth member who shall be elected by the members in or retired from service of such system from among their number in such manner and for such term, not exceeding three years, as the chairman of the authority shall determine, and a fifth member who shall not be an employee, retiree, or official of the governmental unit and who shall be appointed by the other four members for a term of three years. Future elections of the third and fourth members shall be held under the supervision of such retirement board and the term of the third and fourth members shall be so arranged so as not to expire in the year of expiration of the term of the fifth member. Each member of such retirement board shall continue to hold office until the expiration of his term and until the qualification of his successor. Upon the expiration of the term of office of any elected or appointed member or in case of a vacancy in either of said offices, his successor shall be elected or appointed as aforesaid for a three year term or for the unexpired portion thereof, as the case may be, except that in no event shall the term of the third and fourth member expire in the same year as the term of the fifth member.

(c) The members of the board shall serve without compensation, but they shall be reimbursed from the expense fund of the system for any expense or loss of salary or wages which they may incur through service on such board. Nothing in this paragraph shall prevent the treasurer or any other person who serves in the active administration of the system from receiving compensation; provided, that the compensation for such services shall be not less than two hundred nor more than fifteen hundred dollars per annum, and shall be payable from the expense fund of the system.

(d) The board by majority vote shall elect one of its members to serve as chairman until the election of his successor and shall appoint a secretary who may be, but need not be, one of its members. The board shall employ such clerical and other assistants as may be required to transact the business of the system.

(e) The resident counsel of the authority shall be the legal advisor of the board.

(f) The treasurer may be compensated for services rendered as custodian of the funds of the retirement system provided that the compensation for such services shall be not more than fifteen hundred dollars per annum and shall be payable from the expense fund of the system.

(47/8) (a) The contributory retirement system established for the Massachusetts Port Authority under the provisions of sections one to twenty-eight, inclusive, shall be known as, and all of its business shall be transacted under the name of, the “Massachusetts Port Authority Employees’ Retirement System”.

(b) Said system shall be managed by an retirement board which shall have the general powers and duties set forth in subdivision (5). Said board shall consist of five members as follows: the secretary-treasurer of the authority who shall be a member ex officio, a second member appointed by the appointing authority of the authority, a third and fourth member who shall be elected by the members in or retired from service of such system from among their number in such manner and for such term, not exceeding three years, as the chairman of the authority shall determine, and a fifth member who shall not be an employee, retiree or official of the governmental unit and who shall be appointed by the other four members for a term of three years. Future elections of the third and fourth members shall be held under the supervision of such retirement board and the term of the third and fourth members shall be so arranged so as not to expire in the year of expiration of the term of the fifth member. If a fifth member is not chosen by the other four members within thirty days after the expiration of the term of the fifth member, the authority board shall appoint a fifth member for a term of three years. Each member of such retirement board shall continue to hold office until the expiration of his term and until the qualification of his successor. Upon the expiration of the term of office of any elected or appointed member or in case of a vacancy in either of said offices, his successor shall be elected or appointed as aforesaid for a three year term or for the unexpired portion thereof, as the case may be, except that in no event shall the term of the third and fourth member expire in the same year as the term of the fifth member.

(c) The members of the board shall serve without compensation, but they shall be reimbursed from the expense fund of the system for any expense or loss of salary or wages which they may incur through service on said board. Nothing in this paragraph shall prevent the secretary-treasurer, or any other person who serves in the active administration of the system in lieu of the secretary-treasurer, from being compensated for services rendered in the active administration of the system; provided, that the compensation for such services shall not be less than two hundred nor more than fifteen hundred dollars per annum, and shall be payable from the expense fund of the system.

(d) The board by majority vote shall elect one of its members to serve as chairman until the election of his successor and shall appoint a secretary who may be, but need not be, one of its members. The board shall employ such clerical and other assistants as may be required to transact the business of the system.

(e) The chief legal counsel of the Authority shall be the legal advisor of the board; provided, that in such cases as the board deems necessary it may employ other counsel whose fees shall be paid from the expense fund of the system.

(f) The secretary-treasurer may be compensated for services rendered as custodian of the funds of the retirement system, provided that the compensation for such services shall not be more than fifteen hundred dollars per annum and shall be payable from the expense fund of the system.

(47/8A) (a) The contributory retirement system established for the Greater Lawrence Sanitary District under the provisions of sections one to twenty-eight, inclusive, shall be known as, and all of its business shall be transacted under the name of, the “Greater Lawrence Sanitary District Employees Retirement System”.

(b) Said system shall be managed by an retirement board which shall have the general powers and duties set forth in subdivision (5). Said board shall consist of five members as follows: The treasurer of the district who shall be a member ex officio, a second member appointed by the appointing authority of the districts, a third and fourth member who shall be elected by the members in or retired from service of such system from among their number in such manner and for such term, not exceeding three years, as the director of the district shall determine, and a fifth member who shall not be an employee, retiree, or official of the governmental unit who shall be chosen by the other four for a term of three years. Future elections of the third and fourth members shall be held under the supervision of such retirement board and the term of the third and fourth members shall be so arranged so as not to expire in the year of expiration of the term of the fifth member. If a fifth member is not chosen by the other four members within thirty days after the expiration of the term of the fifth member, the district commission shall appoint a fifth member for a term of three years. Each member of such retirement board shall continue to hold office until the expiration of his term and until the qualification of his successor. Upon the expiration of the term of office of any elected or appointed member or in case of a vacancy in either of said offices, his successor shall be elected or appointed as aforesaid for a three year term or for the unexpired portion thereof, as the case may be, except that in no event shall the term of the third and fourth member expire in the same year as the term of the fifth member.

(c) The members of the board shall serve without compensation, but they shall be reimbursed from the expense fund of the system for any expense or loss of salary or wages which they may incur through service on said board. Nothing in this paragraph shall prevent the secretary-treasurer, or any other person who serves in the active administration of the system in lieu of the secretary-treasurer, from being compensated for services rendered in the active administration of the system; provided, that the compensation for such services shall not be less than two hundred nor more than fifteen hundred dollars per annum, and shall be payable from the expense fund of the system.

(d) The board by majority vote shall elect one of its members to serve as chairman until the election of his successor and shall appoint a secretary who may be, but need not be, one of its members. The board shall employ such clerical and other assistants as may be required to transact the business of the system.

(e) The legal counsel of the district shall be the legal advisor of the board; provided, that in such cases as the board deems necessary it may employ other counsel whose fees shall be paid from the expense fund of the system.

(f) The treasurer may be compensated for services rendered as custodian of the funds of the retirement system, provided that the compensation for such services shall not be more than fifteen hundred dollars per annum and shall be payable from the expense fund of the system.

(47/8B) (a) The contributory retirement system established for the Blue Hills Regional Vocational School under the provisions of section one to twenty-eight, inclusive, shall be known as, and all of its business shall be transacted under the name of, the “Blue Hills Regional Vocational School retirement system”.

(b) Said system shall be managed by an retirement board which shall have the general powers and duties set forth in subdivision (5). Said board shall consist of five members as follows: The treasurer of the school system who shall be a member ex officio, a second member appointed by the appointing authority of the system, a third and fourth member who shall be elected by the members in or retired from service of such system from among their number in such manner and for such term, not exceeding three years, as the superintendent-director of the school system shall determine, and a fifth member who shall not be an employee, retiree, or official of the governmental unit who shall be chosen by the other four for a term of three years. Future elections of the third and fourth members shall be held under the supervision of such retirement board and the term of the third and fourth members shall be so arranged so as not to expire in the year of expiration of the term of the fifth member. If a fifth member is not chosen by the other four members within thirty days after the expiration of the term of the fifth member, the school system board shall appoint a fifth member for a term of three years. Each member of such retirement board shall continue to hold office until the expiration of his term and until the qualification of his successor. Upon the expiration of the term of office of any elected or appointed member or in case of a vacancy in either of said offices, his successor shall be elected or appointed as aforesaid for a three year term or for the unexpired portion thereof, as the case may be, except that in no event shall the term of the third and fourth member expire in the same year as the term of the fifth member.

(c) The members of the board shall serve without compensation, but they shall be reimbursed from the expense fund of the System for any expense or loss of salary or wages which they may incur through service on such board. Nothing in this paragraph shall prevent the treasurer, or any other person who serves in the active administration of the system in lieu of the treasurer, from being compensated for services rendered in the active administration of the system provided that the compensation for such services shall be not less than two hundred nor more than fifteen hundred dollars per annum, and shall be payable from the expense fund of the system;

(d) The board by majority vote shall elect one of its members to serve as chairman until the election of his successor and shall appoint a secretary who may be, but need not be, one of its members. The board shall employ such clerical and other assistants as may be required to transact the business of the system;

(e) In such cases as the board deems necessary it may employ counsel whose fees shall be paid from the expense fund of the system;

(f) The treasurer may be compensated for services rendered as custodian of the funds of the retirement system, provided that the compensation for such services shall not be more than fifteen hundred dollars per annum and shall be payable from the expense fund of the system.

(47/8C) (a) The contributory retirement system established for the Minuteman Regional Vocational Technical School District under the provisions of sections one to twenty-eight, inclusive, shall be known as, and all of its business shall be transacted under the name of, the “Minuteman Regional Vocational Technical School District Employees’ Retirement System”.

(b) Said system shall be managed by an retirement board which shall have the general powers and duties set forth in subdivision (5). Said board shall consist of five members as follows: The treasurer of the district who shall be a member ex officio, a second member appointed by the appointing authority of the district, a third and fourth member who shall be elected by the members in or retired from service of such system from among their number in such manner and for such term, not exceeding three years, as the superintendent-director of the district shall determine, and a fifth member who shall not be an employee, retiree, or official of the governmental unit who shall be chosen by the other four for a term of three years. Future elections of the third and fourth members shall be held under the supervision of such retirement board and the term of the third and fourth members shall be so arranged so as not to expire in the year of expiration of the term of the fifth member. If a fifth member is not chosen by the other four members within thirty days after the expiration of the term of the fifth member, the district school committee shall appoint a fifth member for a term of three years. Each member of such retirement board shall continue to hold office until the expiration of his term and until the qualification of his successor. Upon the expiration of the term of office of any elected or appointed member or in case of a vacancy in either of said offices, his successor shall be elected or appointed as aforesaid for a three year term or for the unexpired portion thereof, as the case may be, except that in no event shall the term of the third and fourth member expire in the same year as the term of the fifth member.

(c) The members of the board shall serve without compensation, but they shall be reimbursed from the expense fund of the system for any expense or loss of salary or wages which they may incur through service on said board. Nothing in this paragraph shall prevent the treasurer, or any other person who serves in the active administration of the system in lieu of the treasurer, from being compensated for services rendered in the active administration of the system; provided, however, that the compensation for such services shall not be less than two hundred nor more than fifteen hundred dollars per annum, and shall be payable from the expense fund of the system.

(d) The board, by majority vote, shall elect one of its members to serve as chairman until the election of his successor and shall appoint a secretary who may be, but need not be, one of its members. The board shall employ such clerical and other assistants as may be required to transact the business of the system.

(e) The legal counsel of the district shall be the legal advisor of the board; provided, however, that, in such cases as the board deems necessary, it may employ other counsel whose fees shall be paid from the expense fund of the system.

(f) The treasurer may be compensated for services rendered as custodian of the funds of the retirement system, provided that the compensation for such services shall not be more than fifteen hundred dollars per annum and shall be payable from the expense fund of the system.

(47/8D) (a) The contributory retirement system established for employees of the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority under sections 1 to 28, inclusive, shall be known as, and all of its business shall be transacted under the name of the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority Employees’ Retirement System.

(b) The system shall be managed by a retirement board which shall have the general powers and duties set forth in subdivision (5). The board shall consist of 5 members as follows: the secretary of the authority who shall be a member ex officio, a second member appointed by the board of directors of the authority for a term of 3 years, a third and fourth member who shall be elected by the members in or retired from service of this system from among their number for a term of 3 years, and a fifth member who shall not be an employee, retiree or official of the government unit and who shall be appointed by the other 4 members for a term of 3 years. Future elections of the third and fourth members shall be held under the supervision of the retirement board and the term of the third and fourth members shall be so arranged so as not to expire in the year of expiration of the term of the fifth member. If a fifth member is not chosen by the other 4 members within 30 days after the expiration of the term of the fifth member, the public employee retirement administration commission shall appoint a fifth member for a term of 3 years. Each member of the retirement board shall continue to hold office until the expiration of that member’s term and until the qualification of the member’s successor. Upon the expiration of the term of office of any elected or appointed member or in case of a vacancy in either of those offices, a successor shall be elected or appointed as provided in this paragraph for a 3 year term or for the unexpired portion of the term, but in no event shall the term of the third and fourth member expire in the same year as the term of the fifth member.

(47/8E) No employee, contractor, vendor or person receiving remuneration, financial benefit or consideration of any kind, other than a retirement benefit or the statutory stipend for serving on the retirement board, from a retirement board or from a person doing business with a retirement board shall be eligible to serve on a retirement board; provided, however, that an employee of a retirement board may serve on a retirement board other than the retirement board by which the person is employed; and provided further, this subdivision shall apply only to individuals who first become members of a retirement board on or after April 2, 2012.

(5) General Powers and Duties of Boards. — (a) The board of any system established under the provisions of sections one to twenty-eight inclusive, or under corresponding provisions of earlier laws, shall meet at least once in each month for the transaction of such business as may properly come before it. It shall keep a record of all of its proceedings.

(b) Any such board may adopt by-laws and make rules and regulations consistent with law, which shall be subject to approval as provided for in subdivision (4) of section twenty-one. It shall provide for the payment of retirement allowances and other benefits and for all other necessary expenditures under the applicable provisions of sections one to twenty-eight inclusive, or under corresponding provisions of earlier laws or of any special law, and shall have such other powers and shall perform such other duties and functions as are necessary to comply with such provisions. The head of any department upon request from the board shall promptly furnish it with such information as shall be required to effectuate the provisions of sections one to twenty-eight inclusive. Any such board shall have the power to take evidence, subpoena witnesses, administer oaths and examine such parts of the books and records of the parties to a proceeding as relate to questions in dispute. Fees for such witnesses shall be the same as for witnesses before the courts in civil actions, and shall be paid from the expense fund of such system.

(c)(1) Whenever any such board shall find it impossible or impracticable to consult an original record to determine the date of birth, length of service, amount of regular compensation or other pertinent fact with regard to any member, it may, subject to the approval of the actuary, use estimates thereof on any basis which in its judgment is fair and just. The board, upon discovery of any error in any record of the system, shall, as far as practicable, correct such record.

(2) When an error exists in the records maintained by the system or an error is made in computing a benefit and, as a result, a member or beneficiary receives from the system more or less than the member or beneficiary would have been entitled to receive had the records been correct or had the error not been made, the records or error shall be corrected and as far as practicable, and future payments shall be adjusted so that the actuarial equivalent of the pension or benefit to which the member or beneficiary was correctly entitled shall be paid. If it is determined that a member has contributed an incorrect amount to the retirement system, the member shall be required to contribute an amount sufficient to correct such error or the board shall pay an amount to the member to correct such error, as the case may be.

(3) At the request of a member or beneficiary who has been determined to have been paid amounts in excess of those to which he is entitled or at the request of a member who has been determined to owe funds to the retirement system, the board may waive repayment or recovery of such amounts provided that:

(i) the error in any benefit payment or amount contributed to the system persisted for a period in excess of one year;

(ii) the error was not the result of erroneous information provided by the member or beneficiary; and

(iii) the member or beneficiary did not have knowledge of the error or did not have reason to believe that the benefit amount or contribution rate was in error.

(4) This paragraph shall apply to any demand made after January 1, 1995 for repayment of excess payment or amounts owed to a retirement system made by a retirement board.

(d) Any such board may designate a neutral medical doctor or doctors with training or experience in the particular field of medicine applicable to the disability to advise the board in the determination of applications for ordinary disability retirement, accidental disability retirement, or in the case of an application for accidental death benefit.

(e) The board of each system shall keep a record of the date of birth of each member of the system, and also shall keep a record of the date of birth of each other employee who entered or re-entered the service of the governmental unit to which such system pertains after attaining age sixty and after the date when the system became operative therein. It shall be the duty of such board to notify each such member or employee, the head of his department and the treasurer or other disbursing officer responsible for paying his compensation, of the date when such member or employee will attain the maximum age for his group, and such member or employee shall not be employed in any governmental unit after such date except as otherwise provided for in sections one to twenty-eight, inclusive. Such notification shall be made in writing not less than thirty days nor more than four months prior to such date.

(f) The board of each such system shall annually submit to the appropriate authority an estimate of the expense of administration and the cost of operation of the system for the fiscal year for which an appropriation for the system is to be made as provided for in subdivision (7) of section twenty-two.

(g) Each board of each system shall keep in convenient form such data as is required under section fifty of chapter seven and section twenty-one of this chapter, by the public employee retirement administration commission, for the purpose of valuing the assets, determining the liabilities of the system, making actuarial investigation of the experience of the system, and for promulgating rules and regulations governing the administrative procedures for maximizing the assets of such systems. Such data shall be submitted to the office of the public employee retirement administration commission within such time as he may specify. If the commission determines that there has been unreasonable delay in the filing of any such required data, the commission shall so notify such board in writing. If within thirty days thereafter the commission has not received such required data, he shall so notify the board and the chief executive officer for the governmental unit or units to which the system pertains. The commission may petition the superior court to compel compliance with this paragraph. To ensure the maintenance of accurate and current membership records and payment information, the commission may, for any system which fails to submit the requested information within sixty days of the second board notification, send his agent or agents to examine the records and accounts of the system and to direct such actions by the board or its employees as may be required to comply with acceptable recordkeeping and accounting standards.

(h) Each board shall annually, on or before May first, file in the office of the public employee retirement administration commission the financial statement of the system which is required by the provisions of paragraph (c) of subdivision (1) or paragraph (e) of subdivision (2) of section twenty-three. The state board of retirement and the teachers’ retirement board shall each file such report annually, on or before December 31, in the office of the public employee retirement administration commission which shall show the financial condition of their respective retirement system as of June 30 of the prior fiscal year as required by paragraph (a) of said subdivision (1) of said section 23. Investments of the system shall be carried at values determined by the commissioner in accordance with the requirements of paragraph (b) of subdivision (1) of section twenty-one.

(i) Each board shall prepare annually a report which shows the financial condition of the system as of December thirty-first of the previous year in a manner which can be easily understood by the members of said system. Such report shall contain information showing the financial transactions of the previous year, statistical information with reference to the membership of the system, a summary of the findings of any timely audit reports, a summary of the board’s investment policy, a summary of the system’s investment portfolio as of December thirty-first of the previous year, and information with regard to the system’s most recent actuarial valuation including the unfunded actuarial liability as of the valuation date. Each board shall file a copy of its report with the governmental unit in which the system is established. A copy of the report or a summary thereof shall be made available upon request to each member of the system and to other interested persons. Each board shall annually, on or before July first, furnish to each member of the system an annual statement for the previous calendar year relative to the status of the member’s account. Such statement shall show either the total contribution since the member entered the retirement system, the total amount of interest which has accrued, and the combined total in the account as of the end of the previous calendar year, or the regular deductions for the previous calendar year, additional deductions, if any, for the previous calendar year, regular interest credited for the previous calendar year, and accumulated total deductions as of the close of the previous calendar year. The state retirement board shall file a copy of its report with the governor, and with the state treasurer for publication in his annual report. The teachers’ retirement board shall file a copy of its report with the governor and with the state treasurer, and with the commissioner of education for publication in the annual report of the department of education. The retirement board of each county, city or town system shall file a copy of its report with the county commissioners, the mayor or the board of selectmen, for publication in the annual report of the county, city or town, as the case may be. The retirement board of the Massachusetts Department of Transportation employees’ retirement system shall file a copy of its report with the authority for publication in the authority’s annual report to the governor and to the general court. The retirement board of the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority police retirement system shall file a copy of its report with the authority for publication in the authority’s annual report to the governor and to the general court. The retirement board of the Massachusetts Housing Finance Agency employees’ retirement system shall file a copy of its report with the agency for publication in the agency’s annual report to the governor, to the general court and to the comptroller. The retirement board of the Massachusetts Port Authority employees’ retirement system shall file a copy of its report with the Authority for publication in the Authority’s annual report to the governor and to the general court. The retirement board of the Greater Lawrence Sanitary District employees’ retirement system shall file a copy of its report with the district commission for publication in the district’s annual report. The retirement board of the Blue Hills Regional Vocational school system shall file a copy of its report with the school system for publication in the authority’s annual report to the governor and to the general court. The retirement board of the Minuteman Regional Vocational Technical School District shall file a copy of its report with the district for publication in the district’s annual report. Copies of the reports of the retirement board shall be furnished upon request to members of the system and to other interested persons. Each board shall annually, on or before July first, furnish to each member of the system an annual statement for the previous calendar year relative to the status of the member’s account. Such statement shall show either the total contribution since the member entered the retirement system, the total amount of interest which has accrued, and the combined total in the account as of the end of the previous calendar year, or the regular deductions for the previous calendar year, additional deductions, if any, for the previous calendar year, regular interest credited for the previous calendar year, and accumulated total deductions as of the close of the previous calendar year.

(j) Each board shall, at the time of the retirement of any member, or at the time of the determination of the allowance for the beneficiary of a deceased member, give to such member or beneficiary in writing the following notice:— “The pension or retirement allowance hereafter payable under the contributory retirement law shall not be a bar to the receipt of old age assistance or public welfare, except in so far as it shall be treated as an available resource under such laws.”

(k) Upon the written request of any member or his authorized representative, each board shall provide such member or representative, within thirty days of receipt of such request, a written notice of the benefits to which such member is or may be entitled under the provisions of this chapter, including the dates on which such member will become eligible to receive such benefits, and the effect of such benefits, if any, on any benefits such member may be eligible to receive pursuant to the federal social security act. Such notice shall be on a form prescribed by the public employee retirement administration commission.

(l) Each board shall file the reports required by section 14 of chapter 119A which shall include the filing of a report on or before March 1 with the IV-D agency providing the name, address, date of birth, status and social security number of all members of the system as of December 31 of the previous year. The IV-D agency shall use such information solely for the purposes outlined in chapter 119A and the use of such information shall be subject to the limitations set forth in said chapter 119A.

(m) For the purposes of paragraphs (h) and (i) of this subdivision and paragraph (a) of subdivision (1) of section 23, the state board of retirement and the teachers’ retirement board may write off outstanding pension payments that remain payable or receivable to the respective systems and which the systems have been unable to recover or properly pay for more than 3 calendar years. All write-offs of receivable and payable amounts shall be approved by the state board of retirement or the teachers’ retirement board, whichever is appropriate. The state employees’ retirement system and the teachers’ retirement system shall maintain a record of all amounts written off.

(6) Retirement Board Members Compensation. — The elected and appointed members of a city, town, county, regional, district or authority retirement board upon the acceptance of the appropriate legislative body shall receive a stipend; provided, however, that the stipend shall not be less than $3,000 per year and not more than $4,500 per year; provided, further, that the stipend shall be paid from funds under the control of the board as shall be determined by the commission; and provided, further, that an ex-officio member of a city, town, county, district or authority retirement board upon the acceptance of the appropriate legislative body shall receive a stipend of not more than $4,500 per year in the aggregate for services rendered in the active administration of the retirement system.

(7) Retirement Board Member Training. — During each full term of service retirement board members shall undertake 18 hours of training; provided, however, that not less than 3 hours of such training shall take place each year and not more than 9 hours may take place in any single year; provided, however, that nothing in this subdivision shall prohibit such retirement board members from undertaking more than 18 hours of training.

Such training shall consist of 9 hours sponsored by the commission, which shall include, at a minimum, the topics of fiduciary responsibility, ethical conduct and conflict of interest and 9 hours of training on topics prescribed by the commission provided by the Massachusetts Association of Contributory Retirement Systems or other local, state, regional and national organizations recognized by the commission as having expertise in retirement issues of importance to retirement board members or other entities, as the commission may determine.

The commission shall arrange for at least 18 sessions during each year for members to complete this requirement. In addition, the commission shall schedule additional sessions or otherwise make accommodations to ensure that members are afforded the maximum opportunity to complete this requirement.

The commission shall annually provide retirement boards with a statement of completion of education form on or before December 31. The board shall provide the forms to their members. The form shall set forth the training as required by this subdivision the member has undertaken during that year. Board members shall submit the completed form to the commission by January 31 of the year following. The commission shall annually provide the member with a summary of the member’s status regarding the completion of this requirement by March 1.

Failure to successfully complete the requirements of this subdivision shall prohibit a board member from serving beyond the conclusion of the term in which the failure took place. If the non-complying member is an ex-officio member or a second member, of a board the appointing authority for the second member shall appoint a different individual to serve on the board; provided, however, that the replacement of an ex-officio member shall be an individual experienced in the field of finance or auditing; and provided further, that in a regional retirement system non-complying members shall be replaced in the same manner as is set forth for the selection of the members.

Each retirement board shall notify all board members and prospective board members of the requirement to complete education requirements at the time of receiving information about seeking election to a retirement board or prior to being appointed to a retirement board.

The commission shall annually notify board members of the requirement to complete continuing education.