Section 6. In addition to all power otherwise granted to an authority by law, the authority shall have the following powers, in each case to be exercised by the administrator of the authority unless otherwise specifically provided:—
(a) to adopt and use a corporate seal and designate the custodian thereof;
(b) to establish within its area a principal office and such other offices as may be deemed necessary;
(c) to hold and manage the mass transportation facilities and equipment acquired by the authority;
(d) to appoint and employ officers, agents and employees to serve at the pleasure of the administrator except as may otherwise be provided in collective bargaining agreements, and to fix their compensation and conditions of employment provided, however, no person employed as administrative or staff personnel shall hold any elective office, except that of town meeting member, in any city or town within the jurisdiction of such authority; provided, further, that for policies of group life insurance and accidental death and dismemberment insurance, and group health insurance purchased by such authority, all active employees and their dependents of such authority shall contribute to the total monthly premium or rate applicable to said coverages at not less than the current employee share of monthly premium or rate established pursuant to the provisions of section eight of chapter thirty-two A;
(e) to make, and from time to time revise and repeal, by-laws, rules, regulations, and resolutions, and to establish penalties for violation thereof, not to exceed fifty dollars;
(f) to enter into agreements with other parties, including, without limiting the generality of the foregoing, government agencies, municipalities, authorities, private transportation companies, railroads, corporations and other concerns, providing (i) for construction, operation and use by such other party of any mass transportation facility and equipment; or (ii) for the acquisition of any mass transportation facility and equipment of another party where the whole or any part of the operations of such other party takes place within the area constituting the authority. Any such other party is hereby given power and authority to enter into any such agreements, subject to such provisions of law as may be applicable. Any agreement with a private company under any provision of this chapter which provides for the rendering of transportation service by such company and for financial assistance to such company by subsidy, lease or otherwise, shall include such standards for such service as the authority may deem appropriate and shall not bind the authority for a period of longer than one year from its effective date, but this shall not prohibit agreements for longer than one year if the authority’s obligations thereunder are subject to annual renewal or annual cancellation by the authority for just cause or lack of sufficient appropriation. Such agreements may provide for cash payments for services rendered, but not more than will permit any private company a reasonable return.
(g) to establish at or near its terminals and stations such off-street parking facilities and access roads as may be deemed necessary and desirable. The authority may charge such fees for the use of off-street facilities as it may deem desirable, or it may allow the use of such facilities free.
(h) to accept gifts, grants, and loans from agencies of local, state, and federal governments, or from private agencies or persons, and to accede to such conditions and obligations as may be imposed as a prerequisite to any such gift, grant, or loan.
(i) to provide mass transportation service on an exclusive basis, except as provided in paragraph (j) of section eight in the area constituting the authority and without being subject to the jurisdiction and control of the department of telecommunications and energy in any manner except as to safety of equipment and operations; provided that schedules and routes shall not be considered matters of safety subject to the jurisdiction and control of said department. Nothing contained in this paragraph shall be construed as exempting any privately owned or controlled carrier, whether operating independently, or under contract with the authority, from obtaining any license required under section one of chapter one hundred and fifty-nine A.
(j) to provide mass transportation service under a contract in areas outside the area constituting the authority but only pursuant to an agreement with another transportation authority or transportation area or a municipality for service between the area of the authority and that of such other authority, area or municipality, where no private company is otherwise providing such service.
(k) to provide for construction, extension, modification or improvement of the mass transportation facilities and equipment in the area constituting the authority; provided, that any such construction, extension, modification or improvement shall be subject to the approval of the advisory board, unless specifically authorized by legislation.
(l) to conduct research, surveys, experimentation, evaluation, design, and development, in cooperation with other government agencies and private organizations when appropriate, with regard to the mass transportation needs of the area, and to the facilities, equipment, and services necessary to meet such needs.
(m) to grant such easements over any real property held by the authority as will not in the judgment of the authority unduly interfere with the operation of any of its mass transportation facilities.
(n) to sell, lease, or otherwise contract for advertising in or on the facilities of the authority.
(o) to issue bonds, notes and other evidences of indebtedness as hereinafter provided.
(p) consistent with the constitution and laws of the commonwealth, the authority shall have such other powers, including the power to buy, sell, lease, pledge and otherwise deal with its real and personal property, as may be necessary for or incident to carrying out the foregoing powers and the accomplishment of the purpose of this chapter.
(q) to establish a reserve account for the purpose of meeting the cost of extraordinary expenses of the authority. The account shall consist of annual payments made by the authority into said account in an amount not to exceed three percent of the prior year’s local assessment. Any balance remaining in said account at the end of each fiscal year of the authority shall be carried forward into the next fiscal year; provided, however, the aggregate amount of said account shall not exceed twenty percent of the prior year’s local assessment at any time during any fiscal year of the authority. Any expenditure made by an authority pursuant to this paragraph for extraordinary expenses shall be subject to the approval of the secretary. The secretary shall issue guidelines to each authority establishing the type of extraordinary expenses said account may be used for and detailing the procedures for the approval process for said expenditures.