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General Laws

Section 36. As used in this section the following words and terms shall have the following meanings:—

“Community organization”, a charitable or educational organization incorporated under the provisions of chapter one hundred and eighty to meet the special social or educational needs of adults or children, including, but not limited to, neighborhood houses, multi-service centers, senior citizen organizations, rehabilitation agencies, community schools, and other community service organizations, as further defined by the department.

“Cultural organization”, any public library, library corporation or library association organized under the provisions of chapter seventy-eight, and any nonprofit organization, public or private, such as a museum, historical society, zoo, aquarium, or performing or visual arts organization, as further defined by the department, which is primarily concerned with the advancement of the arts and humanities or the broad aspects of science, and which (a) owns or utilizes, maintains and regularly exhibits tangible objects to the public or provides a regular schedule of public performances or arts services; (b) is professionally staffed to conduct its educational programs; (c) has demonstrated to the satisfaction of the department the ability to provide effective educational programs; and (d) in the case of a nonprofit organization, is exempt from income taxation pursuant to section 501(c)(3) of Title 28 of the Internal Revenue Code.

The department shall promote the use of the educational services of museums and other cultural organizations located in the commonwealth by schools and community organizations as part of their regular programs. To assist in making such educational services available, the commissioner may seek, accept and administer specific grants from federal agencies and from private foundations and other private sources. Such grants may be expended by said commissioner with the approval of the board of education without further appropriation.

The department may, subject to appropriation and pursuant to regulations of the board of education, provide additional assistance from the commonwealth in the purchase of the educational services of museums and other cultural organizations as provided in this section in accordance with the following provisions:—

By monetary grants to city, town, and regional school district committees, educational collaboratives organized under section four E of chapter forty, and to museums or other public or private nonprofit cultural organizations for expenditure in accordance with contracts approved by the department between said organizations and community organizations, as defined herein, for the provision of such educational services. Monetary grants under this section may be spent jointly with such federal grants, if any, or with any other funds available to the school committees, collaborative boards, or cultural organizations for like purposes; provided, however, that no monetary grant shall, when added to any federal or private funds, exceed in total seventy-five per cent of the costs of purchasing such services and of any incidental costs of administration and transportation. Such amounts shall be in addition to grants made pursuant to the last paragraph of section four E of chapter forty.

The department may contract with any appropriate public or private agency to assist schools and private organizations in the planning and development of educational services for the purposes of the two preceding sections.

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