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Session Law

1998

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Chapter 189 AN ACT PROVIDING FOR THE IMPROVEMENT OF COURT FACILITIES IN THE COMMONWEALTH.

Whereas , The deferred operation of this act would tend to defeat its purpose, which is to immediately improve court facilities in the commonwealth, therefore it is hereby declared to be an emergency law, necessary for the immediate preservation of the public convenience.


Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:


SECTION 1. The sums set forth in section 2 shall provide for planning and studies, acquisition of land and buildings, and interests therein, the preparation of plans and specifications, construction, renovation, reconstruction, alteration, improvement, demolition, expansion, repair, furnishings and equipment, and related administrative expenses, for the acquisition, construction, renovation, and repair of court facilities owned or to be owned by the commonwealth and said sums shall be in addition to previous appropriations made for the improvement of court facilities, including any amounts appropriated by chapter 203 of the acts of 1988; provided, however, that priority shall be given to those projects necessary to improve life safety, security, and structural integrity of court facilities owned, or to be owned, by the commonwealth; and provided, further, that an amount not to exceed 2 per cent of the funds authorized herein may be expended for the costs of personnel and related administrative expenses which are solely and exclusively related to the projects funded by this authorization and any previous authorizations made for similar purposes.

SECTION 1A. The general court finds and declares that the prompt accomplishment of the important public purposes of this act by promoting the public interest and labor harmony requires the construction by project labor agreement of only four courthouse projects that are sufficiently extensive in size, complexity and duration for which this act authorizes funds, namely the downtown Worcester court complex, renovations to the historic Suffolk county courthouse, renovations or replacement of the high-rise Suffolk county courthouse, and the new downtown Fall River courthouse facility. Therefore, the commonwealth, in its capacity as a market participant for public construction projects, hereby requires a project labor agreement, including a uniform grievance and arbitration procedure and an obligation not to strike, for construction and renovation work only on each of these specified projects pursuant to item 0330-2206 of section 2.

SECTION 2.

JUDICIARY.
Trial Court.

0330-2206
For planning, development, land acquisition and construction of a new courthouse facility to be located in downtown Fall River, provided that said facility shall house the Bristol county Superior Court located at Fall River, the Fall River district court and a law library; and for projects in preliminary design, including downtown Worcester court complex, so-called, renovations to the historic Suffolk county courthouse, and renovations or replacement of the high-rise Suffolk county courthouse; provided, that expenditures made from this item for the acquisition of land, buildings, and interests therein, planning and studies, the preparation of plans and specifications, construction, renovation, reconstruction, alteration, improvement, demolition, expansion, and repair of the courthouse facility projects, including furnishings and equipment, relocation, compliance with life safety codes and remediation of environmental hazards shall be completed pursuant to the provisions of chapters 7, 30, and 149 of the General Laws or pursuant to the provisions of section 5 of this act; and provided further, that for each of the four courthouse projects specified in this item, the funds authorized by this item or otherwise by this act shall be expended only in accordance with the following conditions: (a) the provisions of sections 26 to 27F, inclusive, and section 29 of chapter 149 of the General Laws shall apply to all contracts for said project; and (b) all construction employees employed in the construction of said project shall be paid not less than the wage rate established for such work pursuant to a project labor agreement with the appropriate labor organization or labor organizations, which includes (1) a uniform grievance and arbitration procedure for the resolution of work-related disputes on job sites; (2) mutually agreeable uniform work rules and schedules for the project; and (3) an obligation for any such labor organization and its constituent members not to strike with respect to work on such project; provided, that it shall not be a precondition to the award of a contract that a bidder has previously entered into a collective bargaining agreement with a labor organization, but only that the bidder be willing to execute and comply with said project labor agreement for the designated project if it is awarded a contract for such designated project
.........................................$285,000,000
0330-2207
For capital needs; provided, that expenditures made from this item shall be based upon the recommendations of the masterplan required by section 7 and to meet the costs of repairs to court facilities that have been or will be transferred to the commonwealth, which shall include, but not be limited to, expenditures for the following projects: the reconstruction or replacement of the trial court facilities in the city of Salem; the construction of a new trial court facility in Berkshire county to be located in the downtown area of the city of Pittsfield; the reconstruction or replacement of the trial court facilities and law library in Norfolk county; the construction of a new trial court facility in Falmouth; the construction of an Eastern Hampshire district court facility to be located in the town of Belchertown; the construction of a Franklin county trial court facility to be located in the town of Greenfield; the reconstruction or replacement of trial court facilities in Lowell; the reconstruction or replacement of the trial court facilities in Lynn; the construction of a new trial court facility in Middlesex county and the replacement of the Middlesex family and probate court; the renovation of the trial court facility in Newton; the renovation of the existing Plymouth superior courthouse for use by the probate and family court; the design and construction of a new Plymouth trial court; the renovation of the South Boston division of the trial court; the construction of a new trial court in Westfield; the design and construction of a new probate and family court in the county of Norfolk, including adequate space for a new law library in said court; and for renovations, repairs, construction, or reconstruction of the Charlestown district court; provided further, that expenditures made from this item for the acquisition of land, buildings, and interests therein, planning and studies, the preparation of plans and specifications, construction, renovation, reconstruction, alteration, improvement, demolition, expansion, and repair of the courthouse facility projects, including furnishings and equipment, relocation, compliance with life safety codes and remediation of environmental hazards shall be completed pursuant to the provisions of chapters 7, 30, and 149 of the General Laws or pursuant to the provisions of section 5 of this act
.........................................$255,000,000
0330-2208
For other court needs, including the costs of preparing the masterplan required by section 7, to meet the costs of court repairs identified through said masterplan and to meet the costs of repairs to court facilities that have been or will be transferred to the commonwealth; provided, that expenditures made from this item shall include, but not be limited to, expenditures for the following projects: the study of a facility in or about the town of Dedham to house the archival needs of the Norfolk county trial courts, including the storage of certain court documents and records of the probate and family court; improvements to the northern Worcester county trial court facility in the city of Fitchburg; the renovation and repair of the district court facility located in East Boston; the renovation and provision for handicapped accessibility, security, and parking at the trial court facility located in Haverhill; a study of the necessary improvements to the superior court building and the existing building housing the district court located in the downtown area of the city of Taunton; the acquisition and construction of a parking facility for the new district court facility in the city of Taunton; assessment and designs, if necessary, for needed renovations or additions to the district court facility located in the city of Quincy; and for costs associated with the design and construction of a new superior court in the downtown area in the city of New Bedford; provided further, that expenditures from this item for the acquisition of land, buildings, and interests therein, planning and studies, the preparation of plans and specifications, construction, renovation, reconstruction, alteration, improvement, demolition, expansion, and repair of the courthouse facility projects, including furnishings and equipment, relocation, compliance with life safety codes and remediation of environmental hazards shall be completed pursuant to the provisions of chapters 7, 30, and 149 of the General Laws or pursuant to the provisions of section 5 of this act
.........................................$143,000,000
0330-2209
For life safety repairs, the remediation of life safety code violations and for security improvements, so-called, at court facilities owned by the commonwealth or by political subdivisions of the commonwealth, notwithstanding any contrary provision of section 1, including the construction, renovation, and repair of courthouse detention facilities; provided, that expenditures made from this item shall include, but not be limited to, expenditures for the following projects: the construction, renovation, and repair of detention facilities and remediation of court facilities within Berkshire county; repairs, renovations, security improvements, handicapped access including, but not limited to, elevator service and air quality improvements at the superior court located in the town of Dedham; air quality improvements and handicapped access at the Norfolk county registry of deeds building, the trial courts in Stoughton and Wrentham and the district court located in the town of Dedham; temporary parking improvements at the interim third district court in Falmouth; the construction of an addition and renovation of the district court located in the town of Dudley, including the construction of additional parking areas; roof repairs and construction of additional parking areas at the district court located in the town of Milford; the renovation and repairs of the prisoners' dock and expansion of the parking lot for judges and court personnel in the New Bedford division of the district court department; the renovation of the existing Lawrence district courthouse in the city of Lawrence located at 381 Common street in said city; the reconstruction or replacement of court facilities in the city of Gloucester; the relocation of the Ipswich district court facility to the building in Ipswich known as the Ipswich Whipple Middle School and the improvement thereof; the replacement of the wastewater pipe serving the district court facility located in the town of Clinton; and for costs, in addition to the amount authorized by chapter 277 of the acts of 1995, of the Brockton trial court, including the remediation of environmental hazards, additional space, security, furnishings and other courthouse needs and for acquisition and improvement of land in the block bounded by Clinton avenue, West Elm street, Belmont street and Warren avenue located in the city of Brockton for additional parking spaces for said Brockton trial court; provided further, that expenditures made from this item for the acquisition of land, buildings, and interests therein, planning and studies, the preparation of plans and specifications, construction, renovation, reconstruction, alteration, improvement, demolition, expansion, and repair of the courthouse facility projects, including furnishings and equipment, relocation, compliance with life safety codes and remediation of environmental hazards shall be completed pursuant to the provisions of chapters 7, 30, and 149 of the General Laws or pursuant to the provisions of section 5 of this act
.........................................$47,300,000

SECTION 3. To meet the expenditures necessary to carry out the provisions of this act, the state treasurer shall, upon request of the governor, issue and sell bonds of the commonwealth, in an amount specified by the governor from time to time, but not exceeding in the aggregate, the sum of $730,300,000. All bonds issued by the commonwealth as aforesaid, shall be designated on their face, Court Improvement Loan, Act of 1998, and shall be issued for such maximum term of years, not exceeding 20 years, as the governor may recommend to the General Court pursuant to Section 3 of Article LXII of the Amendments to the Constitution of the Commonwealth; provided, however, that all such bonds shall be payable not later than June 30, 2023. Bonds and interest thereon issued under the authority of this section, notwithstanding any other provisions of this act, shall be general obligations of the commonwealth.

For each of the four courthouse projects specified in item 0330-2206, the funds authorized by said item or otherwise by this act shall be expended only in accordance with the following conditions: (a) the provisions of sections 26 to 27F, inclusive, and section 29 of chapter 149 of the General Laws shall apply to all contracts for said project; and (b) all construction employees employed in the construction of said project shall be paid not less than the wage rate established for such work pursuant to a project labor agreement with the appropriate labor organization or labor organizations, which includes (1) a uniform grievance and arbitration procedure for the resolution of work-related disputes on job sites; (2) mutually agreeable uniform work rules and schedules for the project; and (3) an obligation for any such labor organization and its constituent members not to strike with respect to work on such project; provided, that it shall not be a precondition to the award of a contract that a bidder has previously entered into a collective bargaining agreement with a labor organization, but only that the bidder be willing to execute and comply with said project labor agreement for the designated project if it is awarded a contract for such designated project.

SECTION 4. The state treasurer may borrow from time to time on the credit of the commonwealth such sums of money as may be necessary for the purpose of meeting payments authorized by this act and may issue and renew from time to time notes of the commonwealth therefor, bearing interest payable at such time and at such rates as shall be fixed by the state treasurer. Such notes shall be issued and may be renewed one or more times for such term, not exceeding one year, as the governor may recommend to the general court in accordance with Section 3 of Article LXII of the Amendments to the Constitution of the Commonwealth, but the final maturities of such notes, whether original or renewal, shall not be later than June 30, 2002. Notes and interest thereon issued under the authority of this section, notwithstanding any other provisions of this act, shall be general obligations of the commonwealth.

SECTION 5. (a) As used in this section, the following words shall have the following meanings:-

"Commissioner", the commissioner of the division of capital planning and operations.

"Design/build", a construction method which utilizes a single company for the design and construction of a building, rather than separately contracting with a designer and then a general contractor.

"Project", any of the courts, courthouses or appurtenant facilities authorized by section 2.

"Site", any parcel or parcels of land acquired for any of the courts, courthouses or appurtenant facilities authorized by section 2.

(b) Notwithstanding the provisions of sections 40E to 40I, inclusive, of chapter 7 of the General Laws or any other general or special law to the contrary, the commissioner is hereby authorized, subject to the requirements of this section, to acquire by purchase or by eminent domain pursuant to chapter 79 of the General Laws, any and all interests in the land and buildings deemed necessary by said commissioner to carry out the purposes of this act, including, but not limited to the acquisition of land, buildings, and easements for drainage, access, utilities, and environmental mitigation.

The commissioner shall not acquire a site by eminent domain unless a competitive site selection process has first been conducted in conformance with subsection (d) and the commissioner determines that as a result of said process, it is not in the best interests of the commonwealth with respect to cost and other requirements of a project to acquire any of the proposed sites. The commissioner shall explain the reasons for such determination in a written report, which shall be available for public inspection.

(c) Notwithstanding the provisions of sections 38A½ to 38 O, inclusive, of chapter 7 of the General Laws, section 39M of chapter 30 of the General Laws, and sections 44A to 44J, inclusive, of chapter 149 of the General Laws, or any other general or special law regulating the design, construction, advertising, or bidding of design and of construction contracts, or any other general or special law to the contrary, the commissioner may select and contract with a single contractor to provide design/build services for the design and construction of the project; provided, however that the design/build contractor shall be certified by the commissioner to perform the work required and shall be selected through a competitive process conducted in conformance with subsection (d).

(d) The commissioner shall develop procedures for site selection or procurement of design/build services in consultation with the office of the inspector general. Said procedures shall include but shall not be limited to the following provisions:

(1) The commissioner shall obtain the site and design/build services utilizing sealed competitive proposals unless the site has been acquired by gift. The commissioner shall solicit proposals through a request for proposals which shall include: the time and date for receipt of proposals; the address of the office to which a proposal shall be delivered; proposed contractual terms and conditions, some of which may be deemed mandatory or non-negotiable; standards by which acceptability will be determined as to quality, workmanship, results of inspections and tests, and suitability for a particular purpose; all evaluation criteria that will be utilized by the commissioner; and such other matters as may be determined by said commissioner. The request for proposals for design/build services shall also describe the scope of the design/build project and identify all quality and performance requirements for said project.

(2) Evaluation criteria for selecting the site shall include, but not be limited to, location in areas of cities and towns, as authorized by section 2, which are in need of revitalization and renewal and where such revitalization and renewal are deemed important by the municipality for acquisition and other costs. Evaluation criteria for design/build services shall include, but not be limited to, relevant technical and management experience of the offeror's proposed design/build team, including subcontractors, the financial stability and resources of the offeror, quality of construction materials, and the costs and life cycle of installed equipment.

(3) Public notice of each request for proposals shall be published at least three weeks prior to the time specified in such notice for the receipt of proposals in the central register published by the state secretary and in a daily newspaper of general circulation in the municipality or county where each project is proposed. The request for proposals for design/build services shall also be published in at least one trade journal of national distribution.

(4) Each request for proposals may incorporate documents by reference; provided, however, that the request for proposals shall specify where offerors may obtain such documents. The request for proposals for design/build services may provide for the separate submission of price, and so provided, shall indicate when and how offerors shall submit the price, and shall specify that bid security in a form specified by the commissioner and in an amount equal to 5 per cent of the proposed contract price shall accompany such proposal. The commissioner shall make copies of each request for proposals available to all offerors on an equal basis. The commissioner may conduct pre-proposal conferences and interviews with interested parties prior to receiving proposals. An offeror's proposal shall be unconditional except as provided in this paragraph. An offeror may correct, modify, or withdraw a proposal by written notice received in the office designated in the request for proposals prior to the time and date set for the opening of proposals.

(5) At the opening of the proposals, the commissioner shall prepare a register of proposals which shall include the name of each offeror and the number of modifications, if any, received. The register of proposals shall be open for public inspection. After the opening of the proposals, an offeror may not correct, modify, or withdraw the price or any other provisions of its proposal in a manner prejudicial to the interests of the commonwealth or fair competition. The commissioner may waive minor informalities or allow the offeror to correct them.

(6) The commissioner shall not open the proposals publicly, but shall open them in the presence of one or more witnesses at the time specified in the request for proposals. Notwithstanding the provisions of any general or special law to the contrary, until the completion of the selection process, the contents of the proposals and the selection process shall not be disclosed to competing offerors and shall not be public documents.

(7) The commissioner shall appoint a site selection committee and a design/build selection committee which may be the same committee. The design/build selection committee shall be composed of experts in design, construction, and court administration, including the chief justice for administration or his designee. The appropriate committees shall evaluate the proposals received by the commissioner. Each selection committee shall conduct its evaluations of the proposals based solely on the criteria set forth in the request for proposals. In the event that price proposals are to be submitted separately from proposals for design/build services, the design/build selection committee shall not evaluate these and the commissioner shall not disclose such price proposals to the committee until the committee has completed its evaluation of the proposals for design/build services.

(8) For each proposal, the appropriate selection committee shall specify in writing on each evaluation criterion a rating of highly advantageous, not advantageous, or such additional rating as the committee finds reasonable, and shall specify in writing a composite rating for each proposal and the reasons for such composite rating.

(9) The commissioner shall make a determination of the most advantageous proposal for the site and for design/build services from a responsible and responsive offeror based upon the ratings given to the proposals by the appropriate selection committees. If price proposals have been submitted separately for design/build services, the commissioner shall also base such determination on an evaluation of such price proposals. The commissioner may negotiate all contract terms not deemed mandatory or non-negotiable with such offerors. If, after negotiation with such offerors, the commissioner is unable to finalize a contract for either acquisition of the site or for design/build services, or both, that is in the commonwealth's best interests, the commissioner may negotiate with the offeror of the next most advantageous proposal submitted by a responsible and responsive offeror based upon the ratings of the appropriate selection committee and upon an evaluation of the relevant price proposal if separately submitted.

(10) The contract to acquire the site and the contract for design/build services shall be awarded by the commissioner to the responsible and responsive offerors submitting the most advantageous proposals based upon the evaluation criteria set forth in the request for proposals and the terms of the negotiated contract. The commissioner shall complete the selection process by written notice to the selected offeror or by notice of rejection to all proposers, as specified below. The commissioner may reserve the right to reject any or all proposals if it is in the public interest to do so.

(11) For the purposes of this section, the term "responsible offeror" shall mean a person, corporation, or other organization or entity which has the capability to perform fully the contract requirements, and the integrity and reliability which assures good faith performance, and the term "responsive offeror" shall mean a person, corporation, or other organization or entity which has submitted a proposal which conforms in all respects to the request for proposals.

(12) If the commissioner awards the contract to acquire the site or the contract for design/build services to an offeror which did not submit the lowest price proposal, the commissioner shall explain the reasons for such award in writing, which shall be available for public inspection.

(13) Prior to execution of a design/build contract, the selected offeror shall furnish to the commissioner a performance bond and payment bond, each in the sum of the contract price and issued by a surety company qualified to issue bonds in the commonwealth and satisfactory to the commissioner. If the selected offeror fails to execute a contract or to furnish the necessary bonds within the time period specified in the request for proposals, the commissioner may award the design/build contract to the offeror of the next most advantageous proposal.

(14) The commissioner shall return the bid security to all design/build offerors which are not selected. The design/build selection committee shall have conferences describing relative strengths and weaknesses of each proposal with the other qualified offerors which were not selected if the offerors request to have such conferences.

(15) The commissioner shall prepare a written report of the reasons for its selection determinations and any subsequent determinations to negotiate with additional proposers, including the recorded votes, if any, that were taken which shall be available to the public.

(e) The commissioner shall submit final procedures for site selection or procurement of design/build services to the inspector general for comment at least 30 days prior to the publication of notice of request for proposals. Such procedures and the inspector general's comments shall be submitted to the governor, the senate president, the speaker of the house and the members of the general court at least 45 days before the execution of any contract for site selection or procurement of design/build services.

SECTION 6. The commissioner of the division of capital planning and operations is hereby authorized, notwithstanding chapter 7 of the General Laws, to grant easements for drainage, access, utilities and other purposes, as deemed necessary by the commissioner to carry out the purposes of this act.

SECTION 7. The division of capital planning and operations, in consultation with the supreme judicial court and the administrative office of the trial court, shall inspect all facilities owned or used by the courts of the commonwealth and shall prepare and periodically update a masterplan for said facilities. Said masterplan shall not distinguish between county owned and state owned courthouses in prioritizing construction and renovation. Said masterplan shall include, but not be limited to, the following standards and criteria, regardless of whether said facilities are publicly or privately owned: standards for the delivery of services in different sizes and types of court facilities; standards for evaluating the adequacy of existing court facilities and the need for new or renovated court facilities, based upon, among other criteria, the physical condition of the facility, the number of cases per courtroom or other comparable measures; and criteria for the prioritization of necessary court facilities capital projects developed on the basis of the aforesaid inspection. Said masterplan shall include recommendations for the consolidation or elimination of court facilities based upon an evaluation of facility utilization and caseload demands, facility redundancy based upon the availability of accessible alternative facilities, and the cost-effective repair or replacement of existing facilities. Said masterplan shall identify how each facility has been evaluated according to said standards and criteria, and shall recommend a schedule for improvement, repair, renovation or replacement for any facilities not recommended for consolidation or elimination by said masterplan. Every facility identified in the masterplan for improvement, repair, renovation, or replacement, regardless of ownership, shall be subject to the approval of the chief justice for administration and management of the trial court, subject to the general superintendence of the supreme judicial court, and the approval of the commissioner of the division of capital planning and operations. Copies of said masterplan shall be submitted to the secretary of administration and finance and the house and senate committees on ways and means on or before January 1, 1998.

SECTION 8. The division of capital planning and operations, in consultation with the appropriate district attorney, is hereby authorized and directed to provide adequate space allocation to accommodate the staff of the district attorney's office, including executive and administrative staff, the grand jury unit, superior court staff, appellate unit staff, or any other unit of said office in any newly constructed, reconstructed, or substantially renovated courthouse facility. No design, redesign, construction, or renovation of any court facility referenced in section 2 shall be finalized by the commissioner of the division of capital planning and operations until a formal presentation has been given to the district attorney on the design plans for the new, reconstructed, or substantially renovated facility. Further, said division of capital planning and operations, in consultation with the appropriate county sheriff, is hereby authorized and directed to provide adequate space allocation in courthouses constructed, reconstructed, or substantially renovated in the commonwealth to accommodate the duties and responsibilities of said sheriff. No design, redesign, construction, or substantial renovation of any court facility referenced herein shall be finalized by the commissioner of the division of capital planning and operations until a formal presentation has been given to the county sheriff on the design plans for the new, reconstructed, or substantially renovated facility. The provisions of this section shall not be applicable to the courthouse projects in the cities of Brockton and Taunton.

SECTION 9. Section 1 of chapter 218 of the General Laws, as appearing in the 1994 Official Edition, is hereby amended by striking out the first paragraph under the caption Hampshire, and inserting in place thereof the following two paragraphs:-

The district court of Hampshire, held at Northampton, Cummington, Huntington, and Easthampton; Hampshire county, except Amherst, Belchertown, Granby, Hadley, South Hadley, Pelham, Ware, and any violation of law committed on the land of the metropolitan district commission comprising the Quabbin reservation or used for the supply or protection of the Quabbin reservoir.

The district court of eastern Hampshire, held at Belchertown, Amherst, Granby, Hadley, South Hadley, Pelham, Ware, and any violation of law committed on the land of the metropolitan district commission comprising the Quabbin reservation or used for the supply or protection of the Quabbin reservoir.

SECTION 10. Section 15 of chapter 203 of the acts of 1988 is hereby amended by striking out, in lines 19 and 28, the word "deputy".

SECTION 11. Section 17 of chapter 203 is hereby amended by striking out the first sentence, as amended by section 201 of chapter 379 of the acts of 1992, and inserting in place thereof the following sentence:- On or before January 1, 2000, any county, by vote of the county commissioners or the county advisory board; any city, by vote of the city council and approval of the city manager in a city having a Plan D or Plan E form of charter, or by order of the mayor in any other city; and any town, by vote at the annual town meeting or a special town meeting; may elect to transfer to the commonwealth all right, title and interest held by said county, city, or town in any or all buildings and land occupied by the judicial branch and owned by said city, county or town.

SECTION 12. The third sentence of said section 17 of said chapter 203 is hereby further amended by striking out, in line 2, the word "deputy".

SECTION 13. The fifth sentence of said section 17 of said chapter 203 is hereby amended by striking out, in line 4, the word "deputy".

SECTION 14. Said section 17 of said chapter 203, as amended by section 201 of chapter 379 of the acts of 1992, is hereby further amended by adding the following sentence:- Any transfer of buildings or land pursuant to this section or section 18 shall require the approval of the chief justice for administration and management, subject to the general superintendence of the supreme judicial court and the approval of the commissioner of the division of capital planning and operations.

SECTION 15. Section 19 of said chapter 203 is hereby amended by striking out, in lines 8, 9, 14 and 16, the word "deputy".

SECTION 16. Section 20 of said chapter 203 is hereby amended by striking out, in line 22, the word "deputy".

SECTION 17. Section 21 of said chapter 203 is hereby amended by adding the following sentence:- Notwithstanding any provision in this chapter, the obligation of the respective counties, cities and towns to pay workers compensation benefits to employees injured on or before the date of transfer to the employment of the trial court pursuant to chapter 152 of the General Laws will continue to be borne by the respective counties, cities and towns and shall not be transferred to or borne by the commonwealth.

SECTION 18. Section 22 of said chapter 203 is hereby amended by striking out, in lines 1, 43, and 51, the word "deputy".

SECTION 19. Section 24 of said chapter 203 is hereby amended by striking out, in lines 13 and 31, the word "deputy".

SECTION 20. Section 26 of said chapter 203 is hereby amended by striking out, in lines 3, 8, 14, 24, 31, 32, 37, 38 and 40, the word "deputy".

SECTION 21. Section 27 of said chapter 203 is hereby amended by striking out, in lines 1, 9 and 20, the word "deputy".

SECTION 22. Notwithstanding the provisions of any general or special law to the contrary, plans for the construction or reconstruction of court facilities with funds authorized in section 2 shall take into account the recommendations and findings detailed in the report of the chief justice's commission on the future of the courts known as "Reinventing Justice 2022".

SECTION 23. Notwithstanding any other provision of this act or of any general or special law to the contrary, the commissioner of capital planning and operations is hereby authorized to enter into a lease for all or any portion of the federal post office and courthouse building at Post Office Square in the city of Boston on such terms and conditions as may be determined by said commissioner and the chief justice for administration and management for use by the courts of the commonwealth. Notwithstanding any other provision of this act, said commissioner is hereby authorized to expend any bond funds authorized by this act to make any improvements to said federal post office and courthouse building as may be deemed appropriate or necessary by said commissioner and said chief justice for the use of said building by the courts of the commonwealth.

SECTION 24. Notwithstanding any other provision of this act or of any general or special law to the contrary, the commissioner of the division of capital planning and operations is hereby authorized and directed to promote the use of the latest technologies available in order to ensure the best available air quality standards are employed in each project funded pursuant to section 2 that is initiated or designed after the effective date of this act.

SECTION 25. Notwithstanding the provisions of any general or special law to the contrary, all court facilities constructed or reconstructed with funds authorized in section 2 shall be constructed so as to accommodate state of the art telecommunications equipment.

SECTION 26. Notwithstanding the provisions of chapter 7 of the General Laws or any other general or special law to the contrary, the commissioner of capital planning and operations is hereby authorized to employ the designer currently employed to prepare plans and specifications for the construction and renovation of court facilities in the city of Worcester to provide all design services for the construction, renovation, reconstruction, alteration, improvement, demolition, expansion, and repair of any court facility in said city of Worcester, including, but not limited to, updating, revising and expanding the existing study, program and cost estimates, preparing plans and specifications and supervising and administering construction contracts; provided, however, that not less than 45 days prior to the execution of any contract for such employment the commissioner shall file with the inspector general and with the house and senate committees on ways and means a report stating its reasons for selecting such designer.

SECTION 27. Notwithstanding section 7 or any other provision of this act or of any general or special law to the contrary, the commissioner of capital planning and operations, in consultation with the supreme judicial court and the administrative office of the trial court, is hereby authorized and directed to prioritize courthouse construction and renovation projects in the following manner; first priority shall be given to those projects for life safety repairs, the remediation of life safety code violations, and for security improvements contained in item 0330-2209 of section 2 and thereafter projects shall be prioritized in accordance with table 6 of the interim report "Establishing a Framework for a Master Plan for Court Facilities in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts: Preliminary Findings Regarding Improvement Needs and Priorities" developed by the court facilities unit of said division, in conjunction with the administrative office of the trial court and the supreme judicial court in January 1997. After the submission of the final master plan to the secretary of administration and finance and the house and senate committees on ways and means, pursuant to said section 7, projects will be prioritized in accordance with said master plan.

SECTION 28. Notwithstanding the provisions of any general or special law to the contrary, the commissioner of capital planning and operations, the chief justice for administration and management, and the secretary of the executive office of public safety shall study the costs and benefits of locating regional lockups and pre-trial detention centers at or within appropriate trial courts. Said study shall be conducted on a statewide basis, but shall include, a study of locating such lockups and detention center facilities in trial court facilities in the city of Lowell. Said study shall be completed no later than March 1, 1998 and a report thereof shall be submitted to the house and senate committees on ways and means.

SECTION 28A. A special commission is hereby established to consider the circumstances under which project labor agreements should be utilized, including consideration of their appropriateness and function and the size, complexity and duration of the public construction projects for which they should be utilized. Said commission shall consist of the secretary of administration and finance or designee thereof, the attorney general or designee thereof, the auditor or designee thereof, the commissioner of capital planning and operations or designee thereof, a representative of the Construction Industries of Massachusetts and a representative of the Massachusetts Building Trades Council. Said commission shall report its findings, together with drafts of any legislation it recommends, to the joint committee on commerce and labor not later than July 1, 2000.

SECTION 29. The provisions of section 9 shall take effect January 1, 2002.

Approved July 28, 1998.

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