Powers and duties of commission; funds; assistance; tax levy
Section 9. (A.) A charter commission may adopt rules governing the conduct of its meetings and proceedings and may employ such legal, research, clerical or other employees, who shall not be subject to the provisions of chapter thirty-one, or consultants as its account may permit. In addition to funds made available by a county the charter commission account may receive funds from any other source, public or private, provided, however, that no contribution of more than five dollars shall be accepted from any source other than the county unless the name and address of the person or agency making the contribution, the amount of the contribution and the conditions or stipulations as to its receipt or use, if any, are disclosed in writing filed with the office of the county commissioners. The consent of a charter commission to any such condition or stipulation shall not be binding upon the county. Within thirty days after submission of its final report the charter commission shall file with the office of the county commissioners a complete account of all its receipts and expenditures for public inspection. Any balance remaining in its account shall be credited to such county’s surplus revenue account.
(B.) Each such county shall provide its charter commission, free of charge, with suitable office space, and each county, and each city and town within the county shall provide the county charter commission free of charge, with reasonable access to facilities for holding public hearings.
The board of commissioners and the advisory board on county expenditures shall, upon request of the county charter commission contribute reasonable clerical and other assistance to such commission, to supplement the resources of the commission provided for in this chapter, and each county and each city and town within the county, shall permit the charter commission to consult with and obtain advice and information from county, city, or town officers and employees during ordinary working hours.
Within twenty days after the election of a charter commission the county treasurer shall credit to the account of the charter commission, with or without appropriation, the sum of thirty-five thousand dollars, provided, however that, in no event shall a county or its treasurer provide said commission with more than one-tenth of one per cent of the total county budget unless said appropriation has been approved by the advisory board on county expenditures.
If payment is to be made after the annual tax levy of the county, it shall be provided by transfer from available funds, or by exercise of emergency borrowing powers without, however, any reference of the question to the registered voters of the county. In any other county, such sum shall be levied against the cities and towns in the county in proportion to their respective borrowing limits, as determined under the provisions of chapter forty-four. Such levies shall be met in the manner provided in subsection (b) of section eight of chapter forty-three B. A county through its advisory board on county expenditures may appropriate additional funds for its charter commission provided the aggregate contribution to the charter commission does not exceed five times the initial contribution required under this section.