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The 190th General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

AN ACT ESTABLISHING A DEPARTMENT OF MUNICIPAL FINANCE IN THE TOWN OF MILFORD

     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.  (a) There shall be a department of municipal finance in the town of Milford, which shall be responsible for the performance of all fiscal and financial activities of the town, including those duties and responsibilities related to municipal finance activities which prior to the effective date of this act were performed by or under the authority of the town accountant, town treasurer and tax collector. The board of assessors of the town of Milford shall be part of the department of municipal finance but shall continue to exercise all of the duties and responsibilities of a board of assessors under the General Laws, except as otherwise provided in section 3. The department of municipal finance shall have additional powers, duties and responsibilities with respect to municipal finance-related functions and activities as the town may from time to time provide by by-law.
     (b)  The department of municipal finance shall be under the direct control and supervision of a director of municipal finance who shall be appointed by and be responsible to the board of selectmen, upon the recommendation of the town administrator. The director of municipal finance shall be a person especially fitted by education, experience and training to perform the duties of the office. The educational qualifications shall consist of an advanced degree, preferably in accounting or business administration, granted by an accredited degree-granting college or university. The professional experience shall include at least 3 years of prior full-time compensated service in accounting or business administration. Alternatively, 5 years or more of such professional experience and a bachelor’s degree in an appropriate discipline shall qualify an applicant. Five years or more of prior full-time compensated experience in accounting or business administration shall also qualify any applicant. The board of selectmen may waive the education or experience requirements of this section. The salary, fringe benefits and other conditions of employment of the director of municipal finance including, but not limited to, severance pay, relocation expenses, reimbursement for expenses incurred in the performance of the duties or office, liability insurance, conditions of discipline, termination, dismissal, reappointment, performance standards and leave may be established by contract.
     (c)  The director of municipal finance shall be responsible for the supervision and coordination of all activities of the department in accordance with any General Laws, town by-laws, administrative codes and rules and regulations. The director of municipal finance may also serve as the town accountant and shall be responsible for coordinating the fiscal management procedures of the office of the town treasurer, tax collector, board of assessors and town accountant, and shall be the administrator of budgeting, including financial reporting, accountability and control, as well as an advisor on financial and programmatic implications of current and future policies to all town departments, the town administrator and the board of selectmen. The director of municipal finance shall be responsible for coordinating all financial tasks required of the town by the General Laws and shall accomplish those tasks in accordance with the dates specified in the department of revenue municipal calendar, as it may be amended from time to time. 
     SECTION 2.  Upon the effective date of this act, the position of elected tax collector in the town of Milford shall be abolished and the term of the elected incumbent shall be terminated. The appointed town accountant holding office as of the effective date of this act shall become the director of municipal finance in the town of Milford. The appointed or elected incumbents holding the offices of town treasurer and tax collector for the town of Milford, as of the effective date of this act shall become the first appointed town treasurer and tax collector, respectively. Thereafter, appointments to the position of town treasurer and tax collector shall be made by the board of selectmen upon consultation with the town administrator and director of municipal finance.  The town treasurer and tax collector shall, subject to appropriation, maintain the same salary and benefits as they have received in their elected or appointed capacities. Notwithstanding sections 108A and 108C of chapter 41 of the General Laws and any by-law adopted under those sections, the board of selectmen may establish an employment contract with a director of municipal finance, town treasurer or tax collector appointed under this act upon the same terms and conditions and subject to the same limitations as contained within section 108N of said chapter 41, applicable to other municipal employees as designated within that section. The town treasurer and tax collector shall be employees of the department of municipal finance under the direction and supervision of the director of municipal finance.
     SECTION 3.  This act shall take effect upon its passage.

Approved, January 29, 2016.