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The 190th General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

AN ACT RELATIVE TO THE SELECTION OF SCHOOL COMMITTEEPERSONS IN THE CITY KNOWN AS THE TOWN OF AGAWAM.

     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 charter of the city known as the town of Agawam, which is on file in the office of the archivist of the commonwealth, as provided in section 12 of chapter 43B of the General Laws, is hereby amended by striking out section 4-6 and inserting in place thereof the following section:-
     Section 4-6.  If a vacancy shall occur, by failure to elect or otherwise, in the office of school committeeperson during the first 18 months of the term for which school committeepersons are elected, no special election shall be held. The city clerk shall immediately notify the school committee of such vacancy. The school committee shall, not more than 15 days after receiving that notification, choose as school committeeperson for the vacancy the defeated candidate for the office of school committeeperson at the regular municipal election at which school committeepersons were last elected, who is eligible and willing to serve, and who received the highest number of votes at such election. If the defeated candidate who received the highest number of votes is ineligible or unwilling to serve, the school committee shall choose the defeated candidate with the next highest number of votes until the vacancy is filled, provided that candidate remains eligible and willing to serve and provided that candidate received not less than 30 per cent of the vote received by the person receiving the largest number of votes for the office of school committee at the election.  If there is a tie in the election, the city clerk shall conduct an automatic recount of the election pursuant to section 135 of chapter 54. If the recount does not break the tie, a toss of the coin shall determine the outcome. The city clerk shall then list the order of the candidates. If no defeated candidate is eligible and willing to serve, the school committee shall by majority vote of the full committee select a registered voter of the city known as the town of Agawam to fill such vacancy.
     If a vacancy occurs after the 18 calendar months of the term for which the school committeepersons are elected, the preceding paragraph shall not apply. The person elected at the next regular town election following the creation of the vacancy who receives the highest number of votes for school committeeperson and who is not then an incumbent member of the school committee shall immediately be sworn in and shall, in addition to the term for which the person was elected, serve for the balance of the unexpired vacant term.
     SECTION 2.  This act shall be submitted for acceptance to the qualified voters of the city known as the town of Agawam at the 2017 regular election in the form of the following question:
     “Shall an act passed by the general court in the year 2016, entitled ‘An Act Relative to the selection of school committeepersons in the city known as the town of Agawam’ be accepted?”
     Below the question shall appear a fair and concise summary of the proposed charter amendments prepared by the city solicitor. 
     If a majority of votes cast in answer to this question are in the affirmative, section 1 shall be applicable in the city known as the town of Agawam and the charter shall be amended as set forth in this act, but not otherwise. 
     SECTION 3.  The city solicitor shall prepare the summary required under section 2 not later than 60 days before the election under section 58A of chapter 54 of the General Laws.
     SECTION 4.  This act shall take effect upon its passage.

Approved, January 11, 2017