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July 20, 2024 Clouds | 79°F
The 193rd General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

AN ACT CREATING A FIRE DEPARTMENT CADET PROGRAM IN THE CITY OF BOSTON

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 board or officer in the city of Boston authorized to appoint firefighters for the city may, when so authorized by the affirmative vote of a majority of the city council and approval of the mayor, appoint as a fire cadet, for a period of full-time “on the job” training, any citizen resident of the city who is not less than 18 nor more than 25 years of age who meets the physical qualifications required of applicants for appointment as a firefighter in the city and who is determined by the appointing authority to be of good moral character. Such appointment shall not be subject to the civil service law or rules; nor shall a fire cadet be entitled to any benefit of such law or rules. Such appointment may be terminated by the appointing authority at any time and shall be terminated whenever a cadet fails to maintain a passing grade in any course of study the appointing authority determines the cadet should undertake and when the cadet reaches the age of 27. A fire cadet shall receive such compensation and such leave with pay as the appointing authority shall determine. No person shall be too old for appointment as a cadet if the person was of qualifying age at the time of application to a cadet program. An appointment to a cadet program shall not be terminated for age unless the cadet has completed 2 years of service.

A fire cadet shall maintain and file records, operate office machines, answer telephones, receive complaints, enter and index official documents, prepare routine reports, prepare and tabulate facts and figures for statistical purposes and have similar duties of an administrative rather than firefighting type. Such fire cadet shall be considered an employee of the city of Boston for the purposes of workers' compensation.

A fire cadet shall not be subject or entitled to the benefits of any retirement or pension law nor shall any deduction be made from the fire cadet’s compensation for the purpose thereof; provided, however, that a fire cadet who, prior to or during the period of the fire cadet’s “on the job training,” passes a competitive civil service examination for appointment to the fire force of the city of Boston, and is appointed a permanent full-time firefighter, shall have the fire cadet’s fire cadet service considered as "creditable service" for purposes of retirement; provided further, that the fire cadet pays into the annuity savings fund of the retirement system such amount as the retirement board determines equal to that which the fire cadet would have paid had the fire cadet been a member of said retirement system during the period of the fire cadet’s training as a fire cadet.

SECTION 2.  Notwithstanding chapter 31 of the General Laws, any person who has completed not less than 2 years of service as a fire cadet under this act may, subject to a program established by the fire commissioner of the city of Boston and approved by the personnel administrator of the human resources division within the executive office for administration and finance, be appointed to fill a vacancy in a position in the lowest grade in the fire force of the city of Boston without certification from an eligible list prepared under said chapter 31; provided, however, that such person is either on a fire entrance eligible list prepared under said chapter 31 or passes a qualifying examination to be given by said personnel administrator.

SECTION 3.  If any federal or state, administrative or court order requires the listing of candidates in separate groups, each group to be listed according to the law of the commonwealth, then this act shall be subject to such listing.

SECTION 4.  Not more than 33 1/3 per cent of the total number of appointments to the regular fire force of the city of Boston in any calendar year shall be made pursuant to this act. The fire commissioner of the city of Boston shall report in writing forthwith to the personnel administrator in said division of personnel administration any appointment made pursuant to this act.

SECTION 5.  This act shall take effect upon its passage.

Approved, December 28, 2021.