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The 190th General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Section 14: Petitions for adoption or revision of charters

Section 14. (a) The charter may be revised in the same manner as provided for in its original adoption by section three.

(b) A petition for the adoption or revision of a charter shall conform with the requirements of subsection (c) and shall have a sentence in substantially the following form at the top of each page.

Each of the undersigned requests that the county revise its present charter or adopt a new charter, and each of the undersigned certifies that he is a registered voter of said county whose residence addresses at the times set forth below were as shown below, and that he has not signed this petition more than once.

(c) The state secretary shall prescribe the form of all petitions under this chapter. Section seven of chapter fifty-three shall apply to all such petitions. No petition shall contain or be accompanied by any indication of party or political designation.

(d) Duplicate certificates shall be prepared setting forth any charter revisions approved, and shall be signed by the state secretary. One such certificate shall be deposited in the office of the state secretary and another shall be recorded in the records of the county and deposited among its archives. All courts may take judicial notice of the charter and charter revisions of the county.

The executive body of the county shall, at intervals of not greater than ten years, cause the charter of said county as revised to be reprinted for distribution to such registered voters of said county as may apply therefor at the office of the executive body of the county. Acts of the general court which are included in such charter may be referred to by appropriate subject headings and statutory citations instead of being set forth at length. Copies of said document may be sold at a price not to exceed the cost of paper, printing and binding thereof, plus mailing charges if any, as determined by the county executive body.

(e) A new charter or charter revision approved by a majority of the voters of the county voting thereon shall take effect on the day specified in such charter or revision. If two or more charter adoption or revision proposals are submitted to the voters in the alternative and are approved, only the alternative proposal receiving the highest number of affirmative votes shall take effect. If two or more charter adoption or revision proposals containing conflicting provisions are submitted to the voters, but not as alternatives, and are approved, all such proposals shall take effect, but the proposal receiving the highest number of affirmative votes shall be construed to prevent all conflicting provisions contained in other proposals from taking effect.