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The 193rd General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Section 9: Annual meeting; other meetings; election of officers; times; adjournment; holidays

[ Section impacted by 2020, 45, Secs. 1 and 1A, as amended by 2020, 92, Secs. 1 to 3, effective March 23, 2020, 2020, 92 Secs. 9 and 15 to 17 effective June 5, 2020 and 2021, 5, Secs. 1 and 2, effective March 16, 2021, relating to elections in order to address disruptions caused by the outbreak of COVID-19.]

  Section 9. Except as otherwise provided by special law or a charter adopted or revised or amended under Sections two, three, or four of Article LXXXIX of the Amendments to the Constitution of the Commonwealth which may provide for a different time for the election of town officials and other matters to be determined by ballot, the annual meeting of each town shall be held in February, March, April, May or June; and other meetings may be held at such times as the selectmen may order or the charter or by-law prescribe; provided, however, that, notwithstanding the provisions of this section or of any other law, by-law, or charter to the contrary, a town, by the vote of its board of selectmen or town council may delay the annual town meeting; and provided, further, that such a delayed annual town meeting shall complete its business on or before June 30 except in the event of an emergency that poses an immediate threat to the health or safety of persons or property that prevents the completion of the business of the delayed town meeting on or before June 30 if the governor has declared a state of emergency with respect to such emergency. Town meetings shall be held within the geographic limits of the town unless a special law, charter or by-law provides otherwise; provided, however, that any meeting for the election by ballot of federal, state or other officers or the determination of other matters that are to be determined by ballot at an election shall be held within the geographic limits of the town. Meetings may be adjourned from time to time and meet and adjourn to any place authorized by law provided that officers shall be elected, and matters required by law to be elected or determined by ballot, shall be so elected or determined during the hours during which polls shall remain open as hereinafter provided. If the day set for a town meeting by by-law or otherwise falls on a legal holiday, such meetings shall be held on the day following. A town may by by-law designate the hour at which the annual town meeting shall be called and subject to section sixty-four of chapter fifty-four by vote or by-law designate the hours during which polls shall remain open in meetings for the election of officers and the determination of other matters that are required by law to be determined by ballot.