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The 192nd General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

AN ACT FINANCING THE RECONSTRUCTION OF THE SOLDIERS’ HOME IN HOLYOKE

Whereas, The deferred operation of this act would tend to defeat its purpose, which is to provide forthwith for the immediate capital improvement needs of the commonwealth, therefore it is hereby declared to be an emergency law, necessary for the immediate preservation of the public convenience.

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.  To provide for a program to protect, repair and improve the capital facilities of the commonwealth and for a program of capital asset acquisitions, dispositions and other improvements for general government operations, the sums set forth in section 2 for the several purposes and subject to the conditions specified in this act is hereby made available, subject to the laws regulating the disbursement of public funds. The sums made available in this act shall be in addition to any other amounts previously appropriated for these purposes.

SECTION 2.

EXECUTIVE OFFICE FOR ADMINISTRATION AND FINANCE
Division of Capital Asset Management and Maintenance

4000-2026.. For costs associated with planning and studies, dispositions, acquisition of land and buildings and interests therein by purchase, prepayment of lease for a term that exceeds the useful life of the facility, gift or other transfer or by eminent domain pursuant to chapter 79 of the General Laws, for the preparation of plans and specifications, repairs, renovations, improvements, modernization, construction, reconstruction, furnishing, equipping, acquiring, remodeling, refurbishing, asset management, accessibility improvements, demolition, disposition and remediation of facilities and grounds operated by the various departments within the executive office of health and human services, all as the commissioner of capital asset management and maintenance, in consultation with the secretary of health and human services and the appropriate commissioners of the departments within the executive office, shall consider appropriate;provided, that $400,000,000 shall be expended for the design and construction of a new facility for the Soldiers’ Home in Holyoke to replace the existing Soldiers’ Home facility; provided further, that costs payable from this item shall include, but not belimited to, the costs of leases of temporary relocation space or equipment as required for completion of the project; provided further, that costs payable from this item may include facilities for additional Adult Day Health programming on the site; provided further, that design and construction of the new facility shall strive to achieve the “small house” model design, as defined in the Small House Model Design Guide published by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs; provided further, that federal reimbursements received for the new facility shall be used to reduce the amount of bonds issued and sold by the commonwealth for this item, so that the amount of federal reimbursements and bonded funds for this item shall total not more than $400,000,000 in the aggregate; provided further, that any federal reimbursement received by a state agency including, but not limited to, the project related to providing health care, human services and veterans’ services in connection with projects funded from this item may be retained by the executive office for administration and finance and expended for the purposes of the project, without further appropriation, in addition to the amounts appropriated in this item; provided further, that the executive office for administration and finance shall report on any such federal reimbursement to the joint committee on veterans and federal affairs and the house and senate committees on ways and means not less than 15 days after receipt of the reimbursement; and provided further, that if the application for federal reimbursement for this item is not approved, bonds shall not be issued or sold for this item until federal reimbursement is secured..... $400,000,000

4000-2027.. For costs associated with increasing geographic equity and accessibility related to the continuum of long-term care services for the commonwealth’s veterans not primarily served by the Soldiers’ Home in Massachusetts located in the city of Chelsea or the Soldiers’ Home in Holyoke, including the establishment of regional or satellite veterans’ homes as well as new or expanded supports for community-based care services and home-based care services..... $200,000,000

SECTION 3.  To carry out the purposes of this act, thecommissioner of capital asset management and maintenance may, notwithstanding sections 32 to 37, inclusive, of chapter 7C of the General Laws or any other general or special law to the contrary, acquire, by purchase, lease or leaseback for a term, including any extensions, not to exceed 50 years, gift or other transfer, or by eminent domain under chapter 79 of the General Laws, any interests in land and buildings considered necessary by the commissioner to carry out the purposes of this act including, but not limited to, easements for drainage, access, utilities and environmental mitigation, and may grant and retain such easements and interests as considered necessary by the commissioner to carry out the purposes of this act.

SECTION 4.  Annually, not later than December 31, and until the completion of the new facility for the Soldiers’ Home in Holyoke, the department of veterans’ services, in consultation with the division of capital asset management and maintenance, shall file a report on the construction of the new facility. The report shall include, but not be limited to: (i) a brief, current description of the project and any substantial changes in the description of the project during the previous year; (ii) the state of progress of the project; (iii) a summary of the total and major costs of the project as originally estimated and as currently expended or currently estimated to be expended; (iv) the original project schedule and the current and estimated schedule and progress of the project; and (v) identification of the designers and contractors who have contracted to provide materials or services for the new facility, including how the designers and contractors meet any applicable participation goals for minority and women workers. The report shall be filed with the clerks of the senate and house of representatives, the joint committee on veterans and federal affairs and the house and senate committees on ways and means.

SECTION 5.  (a) The funds authorized by item 4000-2026 of section 2 for the construction of a new facility for the Soldiers’ Home in Holyoke that is sufficiently extensive in size, complexity and duration to replace the existing Soldiers’ Home facility shall be expended in accordance with the following conditions:

(i)  sections 26 to 27F, inclusive, and section 29 of chapter 149 of the General Laws shall apply to all contracts for the project; and

    (ii)  all construction employees employed in the construction of the project shall be paid not less than the wage rate established for the work pursuant to a project labor agreement with the appropriate labor organization that shall include: (A) a uniform grievance and arbitration procedure for the resolution of work-related disputes on job sites; (B) mutually agreeable uniform work rules and schedules for the project; (C) an obligation for any labor organization and its constituent members not to strike with respect to work on the project; (D) participation goals of minority, veteran and women workers to be employed on each contract and the processes and procedures to ensure compliance with those workforce participation goals, including, but not limited to, a requirement to employ a sufficient number of apprentices to allow for the training and employment of individuals who would not otherwise qualify for employment on the project, the establishment of an access, inclusion and diversity committee and the reporting and enforcement requirements of paragraph (G) of subsection 2 of section 44A of said chapter 149; and (E) an agreement to facilitate the entry of interested veterans into the building and construction trades by designating an entity or organization to serve as a resource for preliminary orientation, apprenticeship programs and other needs, as mutually agreeable, to foster veteran employment opportunities.

(b)  The access, inclusion and diversity committee shall meet publicly not less than monthly to implement and monitor diversity, inclusion workforce and enterprise goals. The committee shall receive regular reports from the project owner and all contractors and subcontractors regarding work hours, diversity, inclusion and progress toward the participation goals for minority, women and veteran workers employed as set forth in the agreement. The committee shall review reports describing: (i) the number of contracts; (ii) total dollar amounts contracted with and actually paid to minority business enterprises, veteran business enterprises and women business enterprises, as those terms are defined in section 58 of chapter 7 of the General Laws, for design and construction of the Soldiers’ Home in Holyoke; (iii) the total number and value of all subcontracts awarded to minority business enterprises, veteran business enterprises and women business enterprises; and (iv) a comparison of these reports with the goals established by the division of capital asset management and maintenance, in consultation with the committee. The committee shall regularly assess progress and identify any obstacles to successfully achieving inclusion of socially and economically disadvantaged workers and businesses in the design and construction opportunities associated with this project and shall make related recommendations to the division on how to overcome such obstacles and increase the level of minority, women, and veteran workers employed on the project and minority business enterprise, veteran business enterprise and women business enterprise participation as contractors and subcontractors for the project. The committee may participate in public forums and other educational or outreach activities designed to inform the general public about the project as determined by the division. The committee shall consist of: 1 member appointed by the governor, who shall serve as chair; the deputy chief of the office of access and opportunity or a designee; the executive director of the supplier diversity office or a designee; the secretary of veterans’ services or a designee; the secretary of labor and workforce development or a designee; and 14 members appointed by the commissioner of the division of capital asset management and maintenance, 2 of whom shall be representatives of the city of Holyoke as recommended by the mayor of the city of Holyoke, 2 of whom shall be representatives of the union trades working on the project as recommended by the Massachusetts Building Trades Council, 2 of whom shall be representatives of contractors as recommended by an established trade organization in the commonwealth, 2 of whom shall be representatives of minority business enterprises and women business enterprises with a demonstrated track record of advancing diversity, equity and inclusion, 2 of whom shall be representatives of an advocacy organization focused on diversity and equity with a demonstrated track record of advancing diversity, equity and inclusion, 2 of whom shall be representatives of organizations that promote the advancement and equity of women as recommended by the Massachusetts commission on the status of women and 2 of whom shall be representatives of organizations that promote the wellbeing of veterans as recommended by the Disabled American Veterans of Massachusetts. Notwithstanding any requirement that certain committee members shall not be named until contracts for the project are signed, the committee shall hold its first meeting not later than 90 days after the passage of this act and shall continue to meet as a full committee until such time as said members are appointed. The division of capital asset management and maintenance shall provide administrative support to the committee as appropriate.

(c)  The division of capital asset management and maintenance, in consultation with the executive office of labor and workforce development, shall conduct pre-apprentice recruitment and other pipeline programming, with a goal of reaching underserved communities, to facilitate compliance with goals for minority and women workers and to promote veteran employment on the project. The division may contract with entities or organizations to facilitate such recruitment and pipeline programming.

(d)  The division of capital asset management and maintenance, in consultation with the access, inclusion and diversity committee, shall set participation goals for minority business enterprises, veteran business enterprises and women business enterprises, as those terms are defined in section 58 of chapter 7 of the General Laws, contracting on the project. The division, in consultation with the access, inclusion and diversity committee and the Massachusetts Growth Capital Corporation, shall: (i) conduct outreach and recruitment, prior to the issuance of invitations for bids and requests for proposals of bids, to facilitate the certification and participation of minority business enterprises, veteran business enterprises and women business enterprises based in the commonwealth; (ii) make available technical assistance grants to be used by socially and economically disadvantaged businesses, which may include, but shall not be limited to, minority business enterprises, veteran business enterprises and women business enterprises to facilitate participation in the bid process; (iii) consider programs and incentives for contractors that meet or exceed goals, including, but not limited to, a “quick-pay” program to expedite payment and working capital and offerings from the Massachusetts Growth Capital Corporation. Prior to issuing invitations for bids and requests for proposals and again after bids are awarded, the division shall file a comprehensive report that outlines the steps taken by the division to recruit and certify minority business enterprises, veteran business enterprises and women business enterprises and the progress in meeting contractor and business enterprise goals with the clerks of the house of representatives and senate and with the access, inclusion and diversity committee.

(e)  There shall be no precondition to the award of a contract that a bidder has previously entered into a collective bargaining agreement with a labor organization; provided, however, that the bidder shall be willing to execute and comply with the project labor agreement for the project if it is awarded a contract for the designated project.

(f)  Any bidder that has a demonstrated record of failure to achieve a workforce or subcontracting diversity goal on a project for the commonwealth shall not be a suitable bidder to receive an award of a contract on the project described in this act.

SECTION 6.  To meet the expenditures necessary in carrying out item 4000-2026 of section 2, the state treasurer shall, upon request of the governor, issue and sell bonds of the commonwealth in an amount to be specified by the governor, from time to time, but not exceeding, in the aggregate, $400,000,000. All such bonds issued by the commonwealth shall be designated on their face, Holyoke Soldiers’ Home Capital Improvement Act of 2021, and shall be issued for a maximum term of years, not exceeding 30 years, as recommended by the governor to the general court pursuant to section 3 of Article LXII of the Amendments to the Constitution. The bonds shall be payable not later than June 30, 2056. All interest and payments on account of principal on these obligations shall be payable from the General Fund. Bonds issued under this section and interest thereon shall be general obligations of the commonwealth.

SECTION 7.  To meet the expenditures necessary in carrying out item 4000-2027 of section 2, the state treasurer shall, upon request of the governor, issue and sell bonds of the commonwealth in an amount to be specified by the governor, from time to time, but not exceeding, in the aggregate, $200,000,000. All such bonds issued by the commonwealth shall be designated on their face, Veterans Homes Capital Improvement Act of 2021, and shall be issued for a maximum term of years, not exceeding 30 years, as recommended by the governor to the general court pursuant to section 3 of Article LXII of the Amendments to the Constitution. The bonds shall be payable not later than June 30, 2056. All interest and payments on account of principal on these obligations shall be payable from the General Fund. Bonds issued under this section and interest thereon shall be general obligations of the commonwealth.

Approved, May 25, 2021.