Skip to Content
The 191st General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

AN ACT PROVIDING FOR THE CHARTER OF THE TOWN OF PLYMOUTH.

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. Chapter 358 of the acts of 2004 is hereby repealed.

SECTION 2. The following shall be the charter of the town of Plymouth:-

PREAMBLE

We, the people of the town of Plymouth, Massachusetts, in order to reaffirm the customary and traditional liberties of the people with respect to the conduct of our local government, do hereby combine ourselves together into a civil body politic, for our better ordering and preservation and by virtue hereof do enact, constitute and frame this home rule charter for the general good of the town.

CHAPTER 1

POWERS OF THE TOWN

Section 1. Incorporation

1-1-1 The present town of Plymouth, within its territorial limits as now or may hereafter be established by law, is hereby continued as a body politic and corporate under the name town of Plymouth.

Section 2. Scope of town powers

1-2-1 The town shall possess, exercise and enjoy all powers possible under the constitution and laws of the commonwealth as fully and completely as though they were expressly enumerated in this charter.

Section 3. Form of government

1-3-1 This charter provides for the representative town meeting-selectmen-town manager form of government.

Section 4. Construction of charter

1-4-1 The powers of the town under this charter shall be construed liberally in favor of the town and the specific mention of particular powers in this charter shall not be construed as limiting any of the general powers of the town as stated in this chapter.

Section 5. Intergovernmental relations

1-5-1 Consistent with any constitutional or statutory provision, the town may exercise any of its powers or perform any of its functions and may participate in the financing thereof, jointly or in cooperation, by contract or otherwise, with any other municipalities, civil divisions, subdivisions or agencies of the commonwealth, other states or the United States government.

Section 6. Definitions

1-6-1 As used in this charter, the following words shall have the following meanings unless the context clearly requires otherwise:

(i) By-law, any by-law of the town duly adopted by the town meeting or continued in effect as provided herein.

(ii) Charter, this charter and any amendments to it made through any of the methods provided under article LXXXIX of the Amendments to the constitution of the commonwealth.

(iii) Commonwealth, the commonwealth of Massachusetts.

(iv) Days, unless otherwise provided by law, the business days, which shall not include Saturdays, Sundays and legal holidays, when the time set is less than 7 days; provided, however, that when the time set is 7 days or more, every day shall be counted; and provided further, that when the last day of the period falls on a Saturday, Sunday or legal holiday, the period shall be extended to the end of the next day which is not a Saturday, Sunday or legal holiday.

(v) Emergency, a sudden, unexpected, unforeseen happening, occurrence, event or condition which necessitates immediate action.

(vi) Financial interest, as determined by the state ethics commission and any applicable reported appellate court decisions; provided, however, the "financial interest" of a town agency shall mean any warrant article and related motions or votes that specifically refer to the town agency.

(vii) Majority vote, a majority of those present and voting in any body; provided, however, that a quorum of the body shall be present.

(viii) Multiple-member body, any board, commission, committee or subcommittee thereof consisting of at least 2 persons who are authorized to act collectively, whether elected or appointed; provided, however, that “multiple-member body” shall not include town meeting.

(ix) Precinct, the areas into which the town is divided.

(x) Quorum, unless otherwise required by law or this charter, a majority of the members of a multiple-member body notwithstanding any vacancies that might then exist.

(xi) Select board, the board of selectmen as used in the constitution of the commonwealth, the general and special laws and the town by-laws and rules and regulations.

(xii) Select person, a person elected to the select board.

(xiii) Town, the town of Plymouth.

(xiv) Town agency, any board, commission, committee, department or office of the town government, whether elected, appointed or otherwise constituted.

(xv) Town officer, an elected or appointed, compensated or uncompensated, official of the town who, in the performance of the duties of their office, exercises some portion of the sovereign power of the town, whether great or small.

(xvi) Voters, the registered voters of the town.

(xvii) Website, the electronic site officially owned and maintained by the town that contains information concerning town business.

CHAPTER 2

THE LEGISLATIVE BRANCH: REPRESENTATIVE TOWN MEETING

Section 1. Division of the town into precincts

2-1-1 The town shall be divided into voting precincts that shall contain, as nearly as possible, an equal number of inhabitants. Each voting precinct shall be composed of compact and contiguous territory as prescribed by the General Laws.

Section 2. Composition, membership and eligibility

2-2-1 The town shall have a representative town meeting that shall consist of representative town meeting members who are elected for 3-year overlapping terms. Each precinct shall elect 9 town meeting members, 3 of whom shall be elected at each annual town election occurring after the effective date of this charter. If the number of precincts in the town changes, the total number of regular town meeting members shall increase or decrease accordingly.

2-2-2 Any registered voter of the town shall be eligible for election to the town meeting.

2-2-3 The town clerk shall serve as clerk of the representative town meeting. The town clerk shall cause notice of all meetings to be posted in the town hall, in the town’s libraries and on the town’s website and take reasonable efforts to post to the town’s social media. The town clerk shall mail copies of the notice to the place of residence of all representative town meeting members, citing the place, date and time of the meeting.

2-2-4 The town clerk shall keep a detailed journal of all representative town meeting proceedings and shall perform such other duties as may be assigned by this charter, by-law or vote of the representative town meeting.

2-2-5 Representative town meeting members shall serve without compensation and shall receive no monetary allowance for any expenses they may incur in the performance of their duties.

2-2-6 Representative town meeting members shall occupy sections assigned to them by the town clerk in a section of the hall which has been reserved exclusively for them.

2-2-7 Any representative town meeting member who is unable to attend a representative town meeting session shall provide written or electronic notice of such anticipated absence and the expected duration of the absence to the town clerk prior to the session.

2-2-8 After the final adjournment of each town meeting, the town clerk shall post a complete attendance record on the bulletin board at the town hall, in the town’s libraries, on the town’s website and on the town’s social media.

2-2-9 The town clerk shall publish the contact information for the town meeting members which shall include the address, phone number and email address. Each town meeting member shall receive a printed copy of the advisory and finance committee report during their term of office unless the member indicates otherwise; provided, however, that statutory authority for withholding any of the information shall not be affected by this section.

Section 3. Powers

2-3-1 The representative town meeting shall exercise all legislative powers of the town.

2-3-2 The representative town meeting shall consider and act upon all proposed by-laws.

2-3-3 The representative town meeting may consider and act upon, pursuant to its legislative authority, with or without amendments, all proposed operating and capital improvement budgets, bond issues and other financial proposals of the town and such other matters as prescribed by law and all matters that appear on the town warrant, except as otherwise provided by the General Laws.

2-3-4 The committee of precinct chairs organized pursuant to section 2-11-4 may from time to time appoint subcommittees of itself or committees of town meeting members to review town by-laws, town meeting rules and the status of past town meeting actions and for such other purposes as it shall deem appropriate and shall make recommendations to the representative town meeting and the moderator at least annually. The committee also may perform other duties designated to facilitate the business of the town meeting. In addition to any other powers conferred upon it by the town meeting, the

committee of precinct chairs shall periodically review the rules of procedure that govern the conduct of the town meeting and report its finding to the town meeting at least annually.

2-3-5 The precinct chair shall meet within 30 days following each town election and shall organize as a committee of precinct chairs and shall elect a chair, a vice chair and a clerk.

Section 4. Procedures

2-4-1 The representative town meeting shall meet at least twice in each calendar year. The first such meeting, the spring annual representative town meeting, shall be convened during the period of March through April, at a time to be fixed by by-law. The spring annual representative town meeting shall be primarily for the determination of all matters that concern raising, appropriating or transferring funds including, but not limited to, the adoption of an annual operating budget covering all town agencies. The second such meeting shall be held during the last 4 calendar months at a time to be fixed by by-law.

The budget adopted at the spring annual representative town meeting may be reopened by a citizen-petitioned article pursuant to section 10 of chapter 39 of the General Laws or any other applicable law.

Pursuant to section 10 of chapter 39 of the General Laws the select board: (i) may, at any time following at least 14 days notice, call a special town meeting; and (ii) shall call a special town meeting upon the written request in writing of 200 registered voters of the town; provided, however, that the meeting shall be held not later than 45 days after receipt of such request; and provided further that the select board shall include in the warrant for the special town meeting therefor all subjects requested by the petition.

2-4-2 The quorum necessary for the conduct of representative town meeting business shall be 2/3 of the total number of elected representative town meeting members. A majority of those present may adjourn any meeting immediately to a stated date, time and place but no town meeting shall adjourn over the date of an election of town meeting members.

2-4-3 The representative town meeting shall operate in open session and no secret ballots shall be allowed.

2-4-4 The order of consideration of the articles on the warrant may be changed only by a 2/3 vote of those present and voting.

2-4-5 The representative town meeting may adopt rules and regulations relating to its procedures and its methods of operation.

2-4-6 An electronic roll call vote shall be required for all final main motions on all warrant articles and on any matters with respect to the following subjects: (i) adoption or amendment of zoning by-laws; (ii) adoption or amendment of general by-laws; and (iii) fiscal matters; provided, however, that “fiscal matters” shall be any appropriations, borrowing, fund transfers or the creation of or re-authorization of enterprise or revolving funds authorized by state law; provided further, if that the event of a vote which the moderator reasonably believes a vote is likely to be near unanimous, the moderator may elect to take a verbal roll call of only those voting in the minority. If the electronic voting system is unavailable or if in the moderator’s sole discretion is determined to be malfunctioning, the moderator may provide for a manual roll call vote in place of an electronic roll call.

2-4-7 An electronic roll call vote shall be required for all motions to close debate; provided, however, that if the moderator reasonably believes a vote is likely to be near unanimous, the moderator may elect to take a verbal roll call of only those voting in the minority. If the electronic voting system is unavailable or if in the moderator’s sole discretion it is determined to be malfunctioning, the moderator may provide for a manual roll call vote in place of an electronic roll call.

Section 5. Attendance of representative town meeting members

2-5-1 Representative town meeting members shall attend all representative town meeting sessions. Each calendar day during which any portion of a representative town meeting is conducted shall be deemed to be a single representative town meeting session.

2-5-2 During each representative town meeting session, the town clerk shall cause the attendance to be taken before the commencement of the session. A record of those in attendance shall be kept open until the end of each representative town meeting session to enable latecomers to be recorded as present. The attendance record shall be public and shall be made part of the representative town meeting proceedings.

2-5-3 A representative town meeting member who moves from the town shall cease to be a town meeting member and a representative town meeting member who moves from the precinct from which the representative was elected to another precinct shall only serve until the next annual town meeting. The town clerk may declare a seat vacant if the registrars of voters, pursuant to sections 47B, 48 and 49 of chapter 51 of the General Laws or any other

applicable law, determine that the representative town meeting member is illegally or incorrectly registered to vote in that precinct.

Section 6. Moderator

2-6-1 A moderator shall be elected at the regular town elections for a term of 3 years.

2-6-2 The moderator shall have no vote unless the representative town meeting members present and voting are equally divided.

2-6-3 The moderator shall preside at all representative town meeting sessions and shall perform such other duties as may from time to time be assigned to the moderator by by-law or by a vote of the representative town meeting.

2-6-4 Following the raising of a point of order at any town meeting, a motion to appeal the ruling on such point of order shall be allowed by the moderator and shall be decided by a 2/3 vote of the town meeting.

2-6-5 Immediately after the annual town election, the moderator shall appoint an assistant moderator for a term commencing at the first town meeting following the annual election or at such time as a vacancy occurs and ending on the date of the annual town election in the following year. Any appointment shall be subject to the approval of town meeting. The assistant moderator shall substitute for the moderator if the moderator is absent from a town meeting session or at the discretion and request of the moderator and shall carry out the duties of the moderator, excluding any exercise of the moderator’s appointing authority. If the moderator is unable to carry out the duties of the moderator’s office by reason of death or disability, then the assistant moderator shall carry out all of the duties of the moderator. The assistant moderator position shall be uncompensated except in the case of the death or disability of the moderator.

2-6-6 The town manager shall provide support personnel to assist the moderator in carrying out the moderator’s assigned duties.

Section 7. Rights of non-members

2-7-1 Residents and taxpayers of the town may speak on any article in a warrant subject to such procedural rules as the moderator may impose.

Section 8. Compulsory attendance

2-8-1 All town officers, the town manager, the town engineer, chair of boards, commissions and the advisory and finance committee and all department heads or their designated representatives shall attend all representative town meeting sessions. They shall have all of the privileges of representative town meeting members, except the power to vote, unless any such official has been elected to the office of representative town meeting member. The absence of any such person or representative town meeting shall not affect the validity of any actions taken at the representative town meeting.

Section 9. Filling vacancies

2-9-1 The town clerk shall immediately notify the precinct of any vacancy that occurs in a precinct delegation.

2-9-2 If a vacancy occurs, the person who received the highest number of votes among the unsuccessful representative town meeting member candidates at the most recent election in the precinct shall fill the vacancy until the next regular election. If that person declines or is unable to fill the vacancy, the person who received the next highest number of votes among the unsuccessful representative town meeting member candidates at the most recent election shall fill the vacancy. If no person is able to fill the vacancy in this manner, then the precinct caucus delegation shall vote to fill the vacancy. If necessary, the town clerk shall call members of the precinct caucus delegation together by written notice and shall conduct the election.

Section 10. Conflict of interest

2-10-1 Notwithstanding any general or special law to the contrary, any representative town meeting member who also holds a position of employment by the town shall be prohibited from voting on any town meeting article in which such employee, or such employee’s department, has a financial interest. The representative town meeting member shall notify the town clerk, in writing, before the representative town meeting session or during such session at such time as such member becomes aware of any article giving rise to such financial interest. This section shall apply to the annual budget article and any later amendment thereto. The representative town meeting member shall not vote on the budget line item for other member’s or department or agency; provided, however, that such member may vote on any other line item and on the overall budget appropriation.

2-10-2 Notwithstanding any general or special law to the contrary, no representative town meeting member shall vote on any town meeting article in which an immediate family member or any business or organization in which the representative town meeting member serves as an officer, director, partner or employee or has a financial interest. For the purposes of this section, “immediate family member” shall mean the representative town meeting member, the town meeting member’s spouse and each of their parents, children, brothers and sisters. Any such representative town meeting member shall

notify the town clerk, in writing, before the representative town meeting session as to any articles giving rise to such financial interest.

2-10-3 For the purposes of this section, the financial interest of a representative town meeting member shall be determined pursuant to the interpretation of the term “financial interest” by the state ethics commission and applicable reported appellate court decisions. The “financial interest” of a department shall mean any particular warrant article and any related motion or vote that specifically refers to that department.

Section 11. Caucuses

2-11-1 The representative town meeting members from each precinct shall, within 20 days following each town election, meet and elect from among their own precinct’s representative town meeting members, a chair, vice-chair and clerk to serve for a term of 1 year and shall file a notice of such organization with the town clerk. If the town clerk is not provided with such notice of organization from a precinct within 21 days following a town election, the town clerk shall immediately call a meeting of the representative town meeting members from any such precinct for the purpose of organizing.

2-11-2 Each precinct delegation shall hold a caucus meeting to review the subject matter of the upcoming representative town meeting. Caucus meetings may be held in conjunction with other precinct delegations.

2-11-3 Each precinct chair shall arrange for the posting of notices of caucus meetings in town hall and on the town’s website. Each caucus meeting shall be conducted under the open meeting law established by section 20 of chapter 30A of the General Laws.

2-11-4 The precinct chair shall meet together within 45 days following each town election and shall organize a committee of precinct chairs and elect a chair and a clerk.

Section 12. Advisory and finance committee

2-12-1 An advisory and finance committee of 15 members shall be appointed by the moderator for 3-year overlapping terms. There shall be not more than 3 members from each precinct of the town; provided, however, that if the number of incumbent members from a particular precinct increases due to redistricting or to the change in residency of that member or another, no incumbent member shall be required to be removed and such member may serve out their respective term. The advisory and finance committee shall choose from its members a chair and shall fill such other offices as it may create. The moderator may fill any vacancy by appointment and the term of that appointment shall be for the remainder of the unexpired term of the person causing the vacancy.

Persons not registered to vote in the town, employees of the town and representative town meeting members shall not be eligible for appointment to, or service on, the advisory and finance committee.

2-12-2 (a) The advisory and finance committee shall conduct at least 1 or more public hearing on the proposed operating and capital budget and shall issue its recommendations in a detailed written report that shall be electronically posted to the town’s website and mailed by regular mail to the town meeting members, both of which shall be completed not later than 14 days before the scheduled date of the town meeting. In preparing its report, the committee may require any town department, board or office to furnish it with appropriate financial reports and budgetary information.

(b) If the advisory and finance committee fails to consider a warrant article, the town meeting may consider that article upon a 2/3 vote of the town meeting members in attendance.

(c) If the article proponent has not appeared at a meeting of the advisory and finance committee to explain their article and answer reasonable questions with respect thereto or, with the permission of the chair of the committee, instead submitted a written explanation, the town meeting may act on that article upon a 2/3 vote of the town meeting members in attendance.

(d) If the advisory and finance committee fails to timely issue its recommendations as required by subsection (a) of section 2-12-2, the scheduled town meeting shall convene and then adjourn to a date that would allow the advisory and finance committee to electronically post copies of its detailed written report at least 14 days prior thereto; provided, however, that 2/3 of the town meeting members in attendance may instead vote to waive the 14-day posting requirement and proceed with the scheduled town meeting.

2-12-3 The advisory and finance committee shall present the proposed budget to the representative town meeting.

2-12-4 In the final month of the fiscal year, no department, commission, office or agency may expend, except for amounts previously encumbered, more than 1/12 of its annual appropriation, unless expenditures have been approved by the advisory and finance committee.

2-12-5 The advisory and finance committee may appoint such subcommittees as it deems advisable.

2-12-6 The advisory and finance committee may investigate the town’s accounts and management. The books, records and accounts of all departments

of the town shall be open to the inspection by the advisory and finance committee and any of its authorized subcommittees and persons employed by it.

CHAPTER 3

THE EXECUTIVE BRANCH: THE SELECT BOARD, THE TOWN MANAGER AND PLANNING BOARD

Section 1. The select board: composition and terms

3-1-1 A select board of 5 members shall be elected for 3-year overlapping terms. The regular election for the office of select board shall be held in accordance with chapter 5.

3-1-2 Vacancies in the office of select board shall be filled by special election in accordance with section 10 of chapter 41 of the General Laws and any other applicable law.

Section 2. Select board: general powers and duties

3-2-1 The select board shall be the chief executive body of the town. The select board shall serve as the goal-setting, long-range planning and policy making body of the town. The select board shall make recommendations on major courses of action to the representative town meeting. The select board shall adopt policy directives and guidelines which the officers, boards, committees, commissions and employees of the town shall implement. The select board shall maintain a policy handbook containing such policy directives and guidelines.

3-2-2 The select board may enact rules and regulations to implement its policies.

3-2-3 The select board shall review the annual proposed operating and capital budgets submitted by the town manager and make recommendations with respect thereto as it deems advisable. The town manager shall incorporate the select board’s recommendations and then present the budget to the advisory and finance committee.

3-2-4 The select board shall act as the licensing authority of the town and may issue licenses and make all necessary rules and regulations regarding the issuance of licenses, including attaching conditions and imposing restrictions in the public interest. As the licensing authority, the select board shall enforce or cause to be enforced all laws, rules and regulations relating to the businesses so licensed.

3-2-5 The select board shall approve all collective bargaining agreements to which the town is the contracting agency and may designate 1 select person to participate in the negotiating of collective bargaining agreements.

3-2-6 The select board shall be responsible, through the town manager, for the efficient and orderly operation of all agencies of the town except those under the direction of another elected town agency.

3-2-7 The select board may investigate, or authorize the town manager or another town officer or agency to investigate, the conduct of any town department, office or agency. A detailed written report of any such investigation shall be filed in the office of the town manager and a report summarizing such investigation shall be printed in the next published annual town report.

3-2-8 The select board shall meet jointly with the school committee, planning board and all other elected boards of the town for the purpose of sharing information. The select board shall schedule such joint meetings, which shall be held not less than twice a year.

Section 3. Appointments

3-3-1 The select board shall appoint a town manager, town counsel, registrars of voters, election officers, constables and members of all multiple-member boards, committees and commissions, except as otherwise provided in this charter or in the town by-laws.

Section 4. Town manager: appointment and removal

3-4-1 The select board shall appoint a town manager by an affirmative vote of 4 members of the board.

3-4-2 The town manager shall be appointed solely on the basis of executive and administrative qualifications. The town manager shall be a professionally qualified person of proven ability, especially fitted by education, training and previous experience in municipal administration, to perform the duties of the office. The town manager shall have not less than 5 years of full-time paid experience as a city or town manager, assistant city or town manager, town administrator or assistant town administrator or the equivalent level of experience.

The town may, from time to time, establish such additional qualifications as deemed necessary and appropriate. The town manager shall not be subject to a personnel by-law, if any.

In addition to other terms as set forth in this charter, generally, and in this section 4 of this chapter, specifically, the town manager shall devote full time to the office and shall not hold any other public office, elective or appointive. The town manager shall not engage in any other business or occupation during the term of office unless such action is approved in advance, in writing, by the select board. With the approval of

the select board, the town manager may serve as the town’s representative to regional boards, commissions and other similar entities, but the town manager shall not receive additional compensation from the town for such services.

To the extent permitted by law, the terms of the town manager’s employment shall be the subject of a written agreement between the parties that shall set forth the length of service, compensation, vacation, sick leave, benefits and any other matters, excluding tenure, as are customarily included in an employment contract.

3-4-3 The select board may discipline or discharge the town manager by an affirmative vote of 4 members of the select board. Within 7 days thereafter, the town manager may appeal the decision of the select board by filing a written request for a public hearing with the select board. If such a request is filed, the select board shall conduct a public hearing within 14 days after the written request and shall act on the appeal within 7 days after the public hearing.

3-4-4 The select board shall designate a qualified person to serve as acting town manager to perform the duties of the office during any vacancy of the town manager that exceeds 30 days and that is caused by the town manager's absence, illness, suspension, removal, or resignation. The term of appointment of an acting town manager shall not exceed 180 days.

Section 5. Town manager: powers and duties

3-5-1 The town manager shall be the chief administrative officer of the town. The town manager shall be responsible to the select board for the effective management of all town affairs placed in the town manager's charge by this charter, the select board, by-law, or vote of the representative town meeting. The town manager shall be responsible for the implementation of town policies established by the select board.

The town manager shall:

(i) unless otherwise provided herein and in section 2 of chapter 6 and except as may be otherwise provided in the civil service law, appoint, suspend, or remove all department heads, a board of assessors and all officers, subordinates and employees of the town, including those under grant funding, except employees of the school department; provided, however, that the town manager shall appoint a town clerk whose duties shall be as specified in general or special laws; provided further, that if an employee works with a multiple-member board or the Plymouth Public Library Corporation, the town manager shall act in accordance with this section but only after consultation with the multiple-member board or the Plymouth Public Library Corporation, as the case may be; provided, further, that except as otherwise provided in civil service laws, appointments, suspensions or removals of department and division heads or any equivalents thereof, regardless of title, shall take effect on the fifteenth day after the town manager filed notice of the action with the select board unless the board shall, within that time, by a vote of 4 members, vetos such action. The select board may, by a majority vote, waive such 15-day period and, upon such waiver, the action shall take effect immediately; and provided further that the planning board, in the case of the appointment, suspension or removal of the director of Planning and Development, may veto the action of the town manager relative to any such appointment, suspension or removal;

(ii) fix the compensation of all town officers and employees appointed by the town manager within the limits of existing appropriations and personnel by-laws;

(iii) supervise all departments under the jurisdiction of the select board and direct the operations of the town;

(iv) establish, reorganize, consolidate or abolish, with the approval of the select board any department or position under the town manager’s direction and supervision;

(v) administer, either directly or through designees, all provisions of general and special laws applicable to the town and all by-laws and regulations established by the select board;

(vi) coordinate the operational and strategic planning for the town;

(vii) administer all grants received by the town;

(viii) submit to the select board a written proposed operating budget for the ensuing fiscal year, providing in detail the estimated revenue from all sources and all expenditures, including debt services, for the previous, current and ensuing years;

(ix) submit annually to the select board a 5-year capital improvements program, including a list of all capital improvements proposed for the ensuing 5 fiscal years and any supporting data, cost estimates, methods of financing, recommended time schedules and the effect on the operating budget or revenues for each proposed capital improvement;

(x) keep full and complete records of the financial and administrative activities of the town and render a detailed written report on all operations as often and for such periods as may be required by the select board;

(xi) administer and enforce collective bargaining contracts and personnel rules, regulations, and by-laws adopted by the town;

(xii) develop and maintain a complete inventory of real and personal property of the town, except school property, at least annually.

(xiii) procure from the school department, a detailed written report, which shall be prepared by the school department, of the complete inventory of real and personal school property for annual submission to the select board.

(xiv) have full jurisdiction over the lease, rental, disposal and use of all town property, except schools, after approval of the select board and be responsible for the maintenance and repair of all town property;

(xv) be the chief procurement officer under chapter 30B of the General Laws, responsible for the purchasing of all supplies, materials and equipment for the town, except for the school department, including the bidding and awarding of all contracts;

(xvi) approve all warrants and vouchers for payment of town funds submitted by the town accountant;

(xvii) negotiate collective bargaining contracts on behalf of the select board unless the town manager specifically designates another negotiator or negotiating team;

(xviii) represent the town at local, state and regional meetings and undertake public relations activities for the select board;

(xix) have authority to examine, without notice, the activities of any agency under the town manager's control and the conduct of any officer or employee thereof;

(xx) have access to all town books and records necessary for the performance of the duties of the town manager;

(xxi) conduct periodic operational and staffing evaluations of selected town departments and provide a written report of the assessments performed to the select board and to the representative town meeting; and

(xxii) perform any other duties required by the town by-laws, by the select board or by vote of the representative town meeting.

Section 6. Department of public works

3-6-1 The town manager shall appoint director of public works. The director of public works shall be qualified by education and experience including a master’s degree in a related field for the duties of the office.

3-6-2 The department of public works shall be responsible for:

(i) the design, construction, maintenance, repair and cleaning of roads, sidewalks, storm drains, bridges and other public way-related structures;

(ii) the maintenance, repair and cleaning and custodial services of all buildings and grounds owned or leased by the town;

(iii) the development and maintenance of all cemeteries, parks and recreation facilities;

(iv) snow and ice removal;

(v) providing for and supervising the collection and disposal of garbage and other refuse and the maintenance and operation of all facilities for the disposal of the same;

(vi) the supervision, care and replacement of trees;

(vii) the design, construction, operation and maintenance of all water and sewer facilities;

(viii) other functions as the town manager may assign; and

(ix) the master planning of all infrastructure elements under its jurisdiction including, but not limited to, public roadways, sidewalks, stormdrains, bridges, cemeteries, parks and recreation facilities, solid waste and waste water facilities, all of which shall be coordinated and consistent with the comprehensive master plan provided for in section 3-14-4.

Section 7. Board of health

3-7-1 A board of health consisting of 5 members shall be appointed by the select board for 3-year overlapping terms.

3-7-2 The board of health shall exercise such powers and duties as prescribed by the General Laws, this charter and the town by-laws.

Section 8. Establishment and scope of the department of finance

3-8-1 There shall be a department of finance that shall be responsible for the fiscal and financial affairs of the town and for the coordination and overall supervision of all fiscal and financial activities of all town government agencies, except the school department. The department of finance shall include the functions of accountant, treasurer, collector, assessors and director of data processing.

3-8-2 The department of finance shall be responsible for:

(i) the coordination of all financial services and activities of town government;

(ii) the maintenance of all accounting records and other financial statements for all town government offices and agencies;

(iii) the payment of all financial obligations on behalf of the town;

(iv) the investment of town funds and management of debt;

(v) the receipt of all funds due to the town from any source;

(vi) maintaining the system of property valuation;

(vii) rendering advice, assistance, guidance and recommendations to all other town offices and agencies in any financial or fiscal affairs;

(viii) monitoring throughout the fiscal year the expenditure of funds by town offices and agencies;

(ix) the general supervision of the purchase of all goods, services, materials and supplies by the town; and

(x) the general supervision of all data processing functions, activities and equipment of town government offices and agencies.

Section 9. Director of finance

3-9-1 The town manager shall appoint a director of finance. The director of finance shall be especially fitted by education, training and experience to perform the duties of the office.

3-9-2 At the discretion of the town manager, the director of finance may serve as the head of any division within the department. The town manager may designate a person to serve as the head of more than 1 division within the department.

3-9-3 The director of finance shall be responsible to the town manager for the effective operation of the department of finance and all fiscal and financial activities of town government. The director shall coordinate and provide overall supervision for all activities of the department of finance and, in consultation with the division head and the town manager, direct and assign all personnel serving in the department of finance.

3-9-4 The director of finance shall be responsible to the town manager and subject to the direction of the town manager, shall:

(i) coordinate the financial functions of all departments and agencies and supervision of the following functions: accounting; treasury; tax collections; assessing; data processing; budgeting; and procurement and shall ensure that each function is operating efficiently and in accordance with the applicable law, by-law, code or accepted practice;

(ii) account for the planning, organizing and provision of administrative direction for all financial functions;

(iii) work with the town manager and the select board in developing strategic financial plans and policies;

(iv) compile and submit an annual operating budget and an annual capital improvement plan to the town manager; provided, however, that the director shall receive all requests made for the expenditure of town funds from every town office and agency and shall assemble all such requests into a form deemed to be best suited to show a complete financial plan for all town funds and activities for the ensuing fiscal year; and provided further that the proposed budget shall show in detail all estimated income from the proposed property tax levy and from every other source by category; and

(v) have general oversight of the expenditure of all town funds pursuant to all budgets and expenditures authorized by the representative town meeting.

Section 10. Conservation commission

3-10-1 The select board shall appoint a conservation commission that shall consist of 7 members who shall serve for 3-year overlapping terms.

3-10-2 The commission shall exercise such powers and duties as prescribed by the General Laws, this charter and the town by-laws.

Section 11. Development and industrial commission

Section 12. Zoning board of appeals

3-12-1 The select board shall appoint a zoning board of appeals that shall consist of 5 members and 2 associate members, all of whom shall be appointed for 3-year overlapping terms.

3-12-2 The board shall exercise such powers and duties as prescribed by the General Laws, this charter and the town by-laws.

Section 13. Establishment and scope of the department of planning and development

3-13-1 There shall be a department of planning and development that shall be responsible for the planning of the land use, environmental, community planning and economic planning and development functions of the town. The department of planning and development shall supervise and coordinate all planning and development activities of all town government offices and agencies. The department of planning and development shall include the functions of comprehensive planning, subdivision control, zoning appeals, preservation of natural open space, community development, economic development, design review, redevelopment and planning of new buildings and facilities.

3-13-2 The department of planning and development shall:

(i) development and maintenance a comprehensive master plan;

(ii) coordinate all land use planning and development activities of town government;

(iii) administer subdivision control rules and regulations;

(iv) preserve natural open space and provided for land acquisition and management;

(v) provide for conservation administration and enforcement;

(vi) provide for redevelopment, revitalization and rehabilitation activities;

(vii) administer design review, historic district review and zoning board of appeals and the review and planning of affordable housing;

(viii) provide for the administration of economic development;

(ix) maintain all land use planning, development and related records and reports for all town government offices and agencies;

(x) render advice, assistance, guidance and recommendations to all other town offices and agencies on land use, environmental, community and economic planning and development matters; and

(xi) cooperate with, and participate in regional area planning.

Section 14. Planning board

3-14-1 The town shall elect a planning board that shall consist of 5 members who shall be elected for 5-year overlapping terms.

3-14-2 The planning board shall exercise such powers and duties as prescribed by the General Laws, this charter and any applicable town by-laws.

3-14-3 The planning board shall serve as the long-range planning body of the town with respect to the planning of the physical, environmental, community and economic development of the town. The planning board shall be responsible, through the director of planning and development, for the efficient and orderly operation of all planning board functions and related activities.

3-14-4 The planning board shall develop and maintain a comprehensive master plan that shall be the guidance document for departmental duties under section 3-13-2 and for the planning board's recommendations to the representative town meeting. The plan shall be updated periodically to address current issues concerning the physical, environmental, community and economic development of the town, including planning strategies for open space preservation, land acquisition, village centers development, economic development, housing and historic preservation. The planning board shall report annually to the representative town meeting to inform the town of all updates to the plan and any implementation measures that may require town meeting approval. The planning board’s recommendations on zoning by-law amendments shall be consistent with the plan. The planning board shall solicit public comment and participation throughout the comprehensive master planning process and shall adopt the plan or any annual plan updates only after a duly-noticed public hearing.

3-14-5 The planning board shall make recommendations to the representative town meeting and to the select board on all matters concerning the planning of the physical, environmental, community and economic development of the town as prescribed by the General Laws, this charter and any applicable town by-laws and specifically with reference to the consistency of such matters with the current comprehensive master plan.

3-14-6 At the request of the planning board, a town board or agency dealing with significant public improvements relating to the physical, environmental, community or economic development of the town shall report the status of such plans or development to the planning board so as to be evaluated and included in the comprehensive master plan and in the planning board’s recommendations to the representative town meeting and the select board.

3-14-7 The planning board may appoint committees to assist and advise the board in carrying out its duties under this charter, such as a master plan committee and such other committees as the planning board deems necessary. Failure of the planning board to appoint any such committees shall not relieve the planning board of any of its responsibilities under this charter.

3-14-8 An open space committee, that shall consist of 9 persons shall be appointed to act in an advisory capacity to the planning board and the town meeting with respect to the preservation of natural open space. Five members shall be appointed by the planning board, 2 members shall be appointed by the select board and 2 members shall be appointed by the conservation commission. The open space committee shall report its activities and recommendations directly to the town meeting at least once each calendar year.

3-14-9 A land use and acquisition committee, that shall consist of 7 members shall be appointed to act in an advisory capacity to the select board with respect to the acquisition of real estate by the town pursuant to chapter 61 of the General Laws. Two members shall be appointed by the select board, 2 members shall be appointed by the planning board, 2 members shall be appointed by the conservation commission and 1 member shall be appointed by the open space committee.

Section 15. Director of planning and development

3-15-1 There shall be a director of planning and development who shall be appointed by the town manager with veto authority by the planning board pursuant to chapter 3. The director shall be a professionally qualified person of proven ability,

perform the duties of the office. The director shall have not less than 5 years of full-time paid experience in community planning and development.

3-15-2 At the discretion of the town manager, the director of planning and development may serve as the head of any division within the department of planning and development. The town manager may also designate 1 person to serve as the head of more than 1 division within the department.

3-15-3 The director of planning and development shall be responsible to the planning board for the effective operation of all planning board functions and related activities. The director shall coordinate and provide overall supervision of all activities of the department, and shall, in consultation with the division head and the town manager, direct and assign all personnel serving in the department.

3-15-4 The director of planning and development shall:

(i) coordinate the land use, environmental, community and economic planning and development functions of all town departments and agencies;

(ii) supervise the following functions: planning; preservation of natural open space; land acquisition; community development; economic development; design review; subdivision control; affordable housing; and zoning appeals;

(iii) assure that each function in clause (ii) is operating efficiently and in accordance with applicable laws, by-laws, codes and accepted practices;

(iv) account for long-range planning and organizing;

(v) provide administrative direction for all functions of the department; and

(vi) work with the planning board, the town manager and the select board in developing strategic plans and policies.

Section 16. Building committee

3-16-1 The select board shall appoint a building committee that shall consist of 9 members. The building committee shall have among its members 1 member of the planning board, a registered professional engineer or architect, an attorney, a person employed in the construction industry or a related trade or occupation, 2 members of the school committee and 3 other residents. Members of the committee shall be appointed for 3-year overlapping terms.

3-16-2 Upon the request of the town manager or a department head, the building committee shall meet with various town departments from time to time to determine the need for additions or renovations to any existing buildings or facilities, for the construction of new buildings or facilities or for the demolition or disposal of existing buildings. The committee shall report its recommendations to the select board and the representative town meeting and the school committee when applicable. Once work is authorized by the representative town meeting, the building committee shall be responsible for the oversight of all work relating thereto, including site planning, preliminary architectural drawings, final plans and the oversight of all construction.

3-16-3 Upon request of the building committee, the town manager may provide support personnel to assist the building committee in carrying out its duties.

CHAPTER 4

ELECTED TOWN BOARDS AND OFFICERS

Section 1. General provisions

4-1-1 Beginning with the first town election held after the effective date of this charter, the town shall elect the following boards and offices:

(i) a select board that shall consist of 5 members;

(ii) a school committee that shall consist of 7 members who shall serve for 3-year overlapping terms;

(iii) a housing authority that shall consist of 5 members; provided, however, that notwithstanding the foregoing, 4 members shall be elected and 1 member shall be appointed in accordance with applicable law; and provided further, that the members shall serve for 5-year overlapping terms;

(iv) a planning board that shall consist of 5 members; and

(v) a redevelopment authority that shall consist of 5 members; provided, however, that notwithstanding the foregoing, 4 members shall be elected and 1 member shall be appointed in accordance with applicable law; and provided further, that the members shall serve for 5-year overlapping terms.

4-1-2 The terms of office of multiple-member boards shall overlap, except as otherwise provided in any general or special law. Representative town meeting members shall be elected in accordance with section 2-2-1.

4-1-3 During the term for which a member is elected and for 1 year following the expiration of such term, no member of an elected board under this charter shall be eligible to accept a paid position under such board or in the same department.

4-1-4 Vacancies in boards established under this chapter, except the select board, shall be filled by the select board, together with the

remaining members of the appropriate board in accordance with the General Laws.

Section 2. Simultaneous elected offices

4-2-1 A representative town meeting member or elected town official representing the entire town shall not simultaneously hold another elected town office other than as a member of a charter commission. A person who holds multiple offices in violation of this section shall promptly inform the town clerk of which office that person shall vacate. Election to a county, state or federal office, other than to a county charter commission, shall be an event disqualifying an elected town official including, but not limited to, a representative town meeting member, from continuing in an elected town office beginning on the day the such person is sworn in to the county, state or federal office.

Section 3. School committee

4-3-1 The school committee shall have all powers that are conferred on school committees by law, this charter, bylaw, or otherwise and are not inconsistent with the grant of powers conferred by the General Laws.

4-3-2 The school committee shall:

(i) appoint a superintendent of the schools who shall manage the school system in a manner consistent with law and with the policy determinations of the school committee and, upon the recommendation of the superintendent, the school committee may establish and appoint positions of assistant or associate superintendents as authorized by law;

(ii) establish educational goals and policies for the schools in the town consistent with the requirements of law and statewide goals and standards established by the state board of education;

(iii) propose and oversee the administration of an annual operating budget for the school department, subject to appropriation by the town meeting; and

(iv) have general charge and superintendence of all school buildings and grounds and shall furnish all school buildings with proper fixtures, furniture and equipment.

4-3-3 The school committee shall report on the state of the schools directly to town meeting at least once each calendar year and shall meet jointly with the select board as directed by section 3-2-8.

CHAPTER 5

ELECTIONS

Section 1. Town elections

5-1-1 The regular election for all town offices shall be by official ballot held on the third Saturday of May of each year.

5-1-2 The order in which names of candidates appear on election ballots for any office, including that of representative town meeting member, shall be determined by a drawing by lot conducted by the town clerk that shall be open to the public. Notification to the candidates and to the public shall be by publication in a local newspaper during the week preceding the week in which the day of the drawing is to take place. The ballot shall identify candidates seeking re-election with the phrase “Candidate for Re-election” placed next to the candidate’s name.

5-1-3 Notwithstanding section 22A of chapter 55 of the General Laws, section 21C of chapter 59 of the General Laws or any other general or special law to the contrary, the official election ballot in the town shall include a fair and concise summary of any binding or nonbinding question to be submitted solely to the voters of the town, along with a 1-sentence statement describing the effect of a yes or no vote, both of which shall be prepared by the town counsel and approved by the select board. Submission to the town clerk of the summary and 1-sentence statement shall be governed by section 42C of chapter 54 of the General Laws. The select board shall, not less than 7 and not more than 14 days before an election at which a question is to be voted upon, publish in a newspaper of general circulation in the town: (i) the full text of the question; (ii) a fair and concise summary of the question; and (iii) a 1-sentence statement describing the effect of a yes or no vote on the question; provided, however, that failure to timely publish such information shall not affect the validity of the election. The select board shall also post the full text of each ballot question, the summary and the 1-sentence statement in at least 1 location in the town or on the town’s official website and shall make the same available at each polling place on the day of the election. The town may, by by-law, require additional posting or publishing of such information, subject to available funds and any other conditions that may be imposed by by-law.

Section 2. Elections to be nonpartisan

5-2-1 All town elections shall be nonpartisan and election ballots for town offices shall be printed without any party mark, emblem, vignette or designation whatsoever.

Section 3. Time of taking office

5-3-1 Any person duly elected to any office or board shall take up the duties of the office or board immediately upon certification; provided,

however, that such person shall first have been sworn to the faithful performance of the duties of that office or board by the town clerk.

5-3-2 Elected town meeting members shall present themselves to the office of the town clerk within 30 days after their election, for the administering of the oath of office or they shall make alternate arrangements with the town clerk. Failure to comply with this section shall result in a vacancy. An elected official shall not act in any capacity until the oath of office is taken.

Section 4. Nomination of candidates for election to representative town meeting

5-4-1 The nomination of a candidate for election or reelection as a representative town meeting member shall be made by separate nomination papers signed by at least 10 registered voters of the precinct in which the candidate resides or in accordance with section 6 of chapter 43A of the General Laws to the extent applicable. Nomination papers shall be filed with the town clerk not later than the last day on which the nomination papers of candidates for other offices are required to be filed.

5-4-2 Nomination papers shall identify representative town meeting members seeking reelection with the phrase “Candidate for Reelection” placed next to each candidate’s name.

5-4-3 The nomination procedure for all other elected positions shall be as set forth in any general or special law.

Section 5. Initiative

5-5-1 At least 10 registered voters of the town may secure the inclusion of an article in the warrant for either of the annual representative town meetings by written petition to the select board. At least 100 registered voters of the town may secure the same for any special town meeting.

Section 6. Referendum

5-6-1 A vote of the town meeting under any article in the warrant shall not be operative until 10 days after its final passage, except a vote to: (i) adjourn; (ii) appropriate money for the payment of principal and interest of bonds and notes of the town; (iii) authorize the temporary borrowing of money in anticipation of revenues; and (iv) amend the zoning by-laws or as otherwise provided by law.

5-6-2 If within 10 days after an affirmative vote for final passage by the town meeting, a referendum petition is filed with the town clerk, signed by not less than 3 per cent of the registered voters in the town as of the date of the most recent annual town election, asking that any question involved in such a vote be submitted to the voters of the town at an election, then the town shall hold a referendum election for such purpose. Within 5 days after receipt of the referendum petition, the town clerk shall determine whether the petition contains a sufficient number of signatures and provide notice thereof to the select board. If there is a sufficient number of signatures, the select board shall provide for a referendum election to be held not less than 35 days from its vote and provision of written notice to the town clerk and not more than 90 days after the town clerk’s determination; provided, however, that if there is another election already scheduled within 100 days of the clerk’s determination, the referendum question may appear on the ballot at such election. The referendum question shall take the following form: “Shall the town vote to approve the action of the [date] town meeting under Article [#] whereby it was voted that (here insert a brief summary of the substance of the vote)?”

5-6-3 A nonbinding public opinion advisory question may be placed on the ballot at an annual or special town election by vote of the select board with not less than 35 days written notice to the town clerk of the form of the question. A nonbinding question may also appear on the ballot at a regular town election by vote of the annual town meeting under a warrant article for such purpose or in conformity with the procedure hereafter provided. A proposal to place a nonbinding public opinion advisory question on the ballot for a regular town election may be presented to the select board not less than 100 days before the date of the next regular election on a petition signed by not less than 10 registered voters of the town. If the select board shall not approve the petition not less than 90 days before such election, then the question may be so placed on the ballot when a petition signed by not less than 3 per cent of the registered voters of the town requesting such action is filed with the board of registrars not less than 42 days before the date of the next annual election. Upon certification of the required number of signatures, the town clerk shall cause the question to be placed on the ballot at the next regular town election held more than 35 days after such certification.

5-6-4 The vote on a referendum question shall be in accordance with the General Laws regulating special town elections.

Section 7. Recall of elective officeholders

5-7-1 Voters may recall any elected townwide officeholder.

5-7-2 At least 500 registered voters of the town may file with the town clerk an initial petition signed under the penalty of perjury containing the

name of the officeholder sought to be recalled and a statement of the grounds for recall. Not more than 50 names shall be counted from any 1 precinct. One voter shall be identified as the lead petitioner and the lead petitioner shall notify the town clerk of the names of the registered voters listed thereon who shall be deemed to be the first 10 signers for the purposes of section 5-7-3.

5-7-3 The town clerk shall thereupon prepare recall petition blanks and notify the lead petitioner that a sufficient number of blanks may be picked up at the office of the town clerk containing the number of signature lines required, plus at least 2/5 more. The town clerk shall keep these printed forms available. The town clerk shall sign and affix the official seal to the recall petition blanks that are issued. Photocopies of recall petitions shall not be accepted by the town clerk. The recall petition blanks shall be dated and addressed to the select board and shall demand the election of a successor to the office. The recall petition blanks shall contain the names of the first 10 signers, the number of recall petitions issued, the name and office of the officeholder whose recall is sought and the grounds for recall as stated in the initial petition.

5-7-4 The town clerk shall enter a copy of the recall petition in the town records. The recall petition shall bear the signatures and residential addresses of not less than 15 per cent of the registered voters as of the date of the most recent annual town election and shall be returned to the town clerk within 20 business days after the notification to the lead petitioner of the availability of the recall petitions. Completed recall petitions containing the signatures requesting a recall election shall not be required to be submitted simultaneously.

5-7-5 The town clerk shall submit the recall petition to the board of registrars of voters within 1 business day after receipt thereof. The registrars of voters shall certify thereon the number of signatures that represent registered voters within 7 business days thereafter.

5-7-6 If the recall petition is certified by the board of registrars of voters as sufficient, the town clerk shall submit the same to the select board with a certificate stating that the petition is sufficient. Within 3 business days after receipt of the certificate of sufficiency, the select board shall give written notice of the receipt of the certificate to the officeholder sought to be recalled.

5-7-7 If the officeholder does not resign within 5 business days after the date of receipt of the notice, the select board shall order a special election to be held on a date fixed by it which shall be not less than 64 days from the date of the vote of the select board to call for the election and not more than 90 days after the date of the town clerk’s certificate that a sufficient recall petition has been filed; provided, however, that if any other town election is to occur within 100 days after the date of the certificate of sufficiency, the select board shall postpone the holding of the special election to the date of such other election and the question of recall shall appear on the ballot at such other election. If a vacancy occurs in the office after a recall election has been ordered, the election shall nevertheless proceed.

5-7-8 An officeholder sought to be removed may be a candidate at the recall election and, unless such officeholder requests otherwise in writing, the town clerk shall place the officeholder’s name on the ballot without nomination. The nomination of candidates, the publication of the warrant for the recall election and the conduct of the same shall all be in accordance with the General Laws relating to elections unless otherwise provided herein.

5-7-9 The officeholder who is the subject of a pending recall shall continue to perform the duties of the office until the recall election. If not recalled, the incumbent shall continue in office for the remainder of the unexpired term unless the officeholder sooner vacates. An officeholder who having successfully survived a recall election shall not again be subject to recall during the same term of office. If recalled, the incumbent shall be deemed removed upon the qualification of the successor and the successor shall hold office for the remainder of the unexpired term. If the successor fails to qualify within 10 business days after receiving notification of election, the officeholder shall thereupon be deemed removed and the office shall be deemed vacant.

5-7-10 The form of the question to be voted upon at a recall election shall be substantially as follows: “Shall (insert the name and title of the elective officeholder whose recall is sought) be recalled?” The action of the voters to recall shall require a majority vote and shall not be effective unless the total of those voting for and against recall exceeds 20 per cent of the registered voters of the town as of the date of the last annual election. If the question of recall is not approved as provided in this section, the votes for candidates shall not be counted.

5-7-11 No person having been removed from office by recall or having resigned from office following certification of names on an initial petition

filed under section 5-7-2 shall be appointed to any town office within 2 years following such removal or resignation.

5-7-12 Recall proceedings shall not be initiated during the first or last 180 days of an officeholder's term of office.

Section 8. Recall of representative town meeting members

5-8-1 Representative town meeting members shall be subject to recall as generally provided in section 7 provided, however, that in said section 7, “representative town meeting member” shall be substituted for “officeholder”, each time it appears; provided further, that in section 5-7-2, “125” shall be substituted for “500” and that names submitted shall be those of registered voters residing in the precinct of the intended recall election; provided further, that in section 5-7-4, the recall petition shall include the signatures and residential addresses of not less than 15 per cent of the registered voters residing in the precinct; provided further, that in said section 5-7-4, the “10” shall be substituted for “20”; provided further, that in section 5-7-7, “special precinct election” shall be substituted for “special election”; provided further, that in section 5-7-10 “precinct” shall be substituted for “town”; and provided further, that any vacancy created by a recall election shall be filled in accordance with the section 9 of chapter 2.

CHAPTER 6

TOWN BOARDS, COMMISSIONS, COMMITTEES AND DEPARTMENT AND DIVISION HEADS

Section 1. General provisions

6-1-1 All boards, commissions and committees of the town shall organize annually as soon after the annual election as practicable to elect necessary officers, establish quorum requirements, adopt rules of procedure and maintain minutes. All boards, commissions and committees shall regularly file approved meeting minutes with the town clerk. Such minutes shall be made available for inspection to anyone upon request.

Section 2. Delegation of appointment, discipline and removal power

6-2-1 The powers conferred upon the town manager in clause (i) of the second paragraph of section 3-5-1, for all employees subject to, the civil service law in chapter 31 of the General Laws, except department and division heads or their equivalents regardless of title and school employees, may be delegated to the appropriate department heads. To the extent permitted by law, such powers, which shall include the authority to appoint, discipline or discharge an employee, shall be subject to final approval by the town manager, without appeal or recourse to the select board.

6-2-2 All multi-member board and committee appointments made under this charter shall be for a specific term. Any person whose cumulative attendance falls below 50 per cent in a 12-month period and such attendance record has been duly certified to the town clerk by a majority vote of the board or committee shall, upon such certification, be deemed to have resigned from the appointed position. Thereafter, the position shall be considered vacant for all purposes.

6-2-3 All bodies that have the power to appoint shall have the power to remove any such appointee for cause, by a vote of the appointing authority, as defined in the established process developed by the appointing authority.

CHAPTER 7

GENERAL PROVISIONS

Section 1. Charter amendment

7-1-1 This charter may be replaced, revised or amended in accordance with the General Laws.

Section 2. Specific provisions to prevail

7-2-1 To the extent that any specific provision of this charter conflicts with any general provision, the specific provision of this charter shall prevail.

Section 3. Severability of charter

7-3-1 If any provision of this charter shall be held to be invalid, no other provision of this charter shall be affected thereby. If the application of this charter or any of its provisions to any person or circumstances is held to be invalid, the application of this charter and its provisions to any other persons and circumstances shall not be affected thereby.

Section 4. Continuation, revision, and republication of by-laws

7-4-1 All special acts, by-laws, resolutions, rules, regulations and votes of the town meeting in force on the effective date of this charter that are not inconsistent with this charter shall continue in full force and effect.

Section 5. Enforceability of this charter

7-5-1 The provisions of this charter may be enforced by any applicable general or special law including, but not limited to, section 14 of chapter 43B of the General Laws and chapter 231A of the General Laws.

Section 6. Periodic charter review

7-6-1 At least once every 5 years, a charter review committee shall review this charter and make a report, with recommendations, to the town meeting concerning any proposed amendments that the committee may determine to be necessary or desirable. The members of the charter review committee shall be appointed by a special committee consisting of the moderator, who shall serve as chair, 1 member of the select board and 1 member of the committee of precinct chairs.

Approved, March 18, 2020.