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  • Acts
  • 2001
  • Chapter 160 AN ACT AUTHORIZING THE TOWN OF BRAINTREE TO ESTABLISH A DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS.

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. There is hereby established in the town of Braintree a department of public works, in this act called the department, which shall be under the supervision and control of the board of selectmen, in this act called the board.

SECTION 2. The board shall have all the powers and duties now or from time to time vested by general or special law or by town by-law in the following boards, commissions, or officers: the board of water and sewer commissioners, the cemetery commission, and the tree warden. The board of water and sewer commissioners, the cemetery commission and the office of tree warden are abolished. No existing contract or liability shall be affected by the abolition, but the board shall in all respects be the lawful successor of the offices so abolished.

SECTION 3. The department shall have all the functions now or from time to time vested by general or special law or by town by-law in the following departments or offices: highway department, water and sewer department, cemetery department, tree warden department and engineering department.

SECTION 4. The department shall have additional powers related to the duties and responsibilities of a department of public works as the town may from time to time by by-law provide, any other provisions of law to the contrary notwithstanding.

SECTION 5. There shall be a public works permitting and advisory board, consisting of 5 members, 1 of whom shall be the director of public works and 4 of whom shall be appointed by the board of selectmen. Initially 2 members shall be appointed for terms of 3 years, 1 member shall be appointed for a term of 2 years, and 1 member shall be appointed for a term of 1 year. Thereafter, all members shall be appointed for a term of 3 years. The public works permitting and advisory board shall be responsible for the issuance of permits and licenses and setting of fees pertaining to public works issues as defined in the town by-laws. The public works permitting and advisory board shall also be responsible for making recommendations to the board of selectmen as to long range planning in the areas served by the department and for doing other studies as the board of selectmen may require.

SECTION 6. The department of public works shall consist of divisions as defined by town by-law.

SECTION 7. The board shall appoint, fix the tenure and compensation of, and enter into a contract with a director of public works, subject to appropriation and the provisions of the town by-laws and personnel by-laws. The director shall exercise and perform, under the supervision and direction of the board, the powers, rights and duties which have been transferred to the department hereunder as the board may from time to time designate. The director shall be responsible for the efficient exercise and performance of the powers, rights and duties. The director shall be specially fitted by education, training, and experience to perform the duties of the office, with other qualifications as set forth in the town by-laws. The director need not be a resident of the town during tenure of office.

During tenure, the director shall not hold elective or appointed office within the town, other than as a member of the public works permitting and advisory board or as a town meeting member, nor be engaged in any other business or occupation, without the express written prior authorization of the board. If the board requires, he shall give to the town a bond with a surety company authorized to transact business in the commonwealth for the faithful performance of duties in the sum and upon the conditions as the board may require. Subject to town personnel by-law and appropriation and unless objected to by the board within 30 days of the date of appointment, suspension or removal, the director shall appoint and may suspend or remove such assistants, agents and employees as the exercise and performance of his powers, rights and duties, may require. The director shall keep records of the doings of his office, and render to the board as often as it may require, a report of all operations under his control during the period reported upon; and annually and from time to time as required by the board, shall make a synopsis of the reports for publication. The director shall keep the board advised as to the needs of the town within the scope of his duties, and shall furnish to the board each year, upon its request, a detailed estimate in writing of the appropriations required during the next succeeding fiscal year for the proper exercise and performance of all said powers, rights and duties.

SECTION 8. Each permanent employee of any board, department or office abolished by this act shall be transferred to and become an employee of the department.

SECTION 9. All equipment owned by the town of Braintree and under the control of the offices, boards, or commissions abolished by this act shall be transferred to and be under the control and direction of the department.

SECTION 10. This act shall be submitted to the voters of the town of Braintree for acceptance at the next town election, in the form of the following question which shall be placed on the official ballot to be used at said election:

"Shall an act passed by the general court entitled 'An Act authorizing the town of Braintree to establish a department of public works', be accepted?"

If a majority of votes cast in answer to this question are in the affirmative, this act shall take effect on July 1, 2002.

Approved November 28, 2001.