Composition - There shall be a town council consisting of 9 members which shall exercise the legislative powers of the town. Five of these members, to be known as councillors-at-large, shall be nominated and elected by and from the voters-at-large. Four of these members, to be known as district councillors, shall be nominated and elected by and from the voters of each district, 1 such district councillor to be elected from each of the 4 council districts into which the town is divided, in accordance with section 7-4.
Term of Office - The terms of town councillors shall be for 2 years each and shall begin following such town councillors' election on the first day of January that does not fall on a weekend or holiday and shall continue until their successors are qualified.
Eligibility - Any voter shall be eligible to hold the office of councillor-at-large. A district councillor shall, at the time of his election, be a voter of the district from which he is elected; provided, however, that if any such district councillor shall, during the term for which he was elected, remove to another district in the town, or be so removed by a revision of district lines, such councillor may continue to serve for the balance of the term for which he was elected. If a councillor-at-large or a district councillor removes from the town during the term for which elected, the office shall be considered vacant and filled in the manner provided in section 2-10. Councillors shall not serve as the chairman of any appointed board, committee or commission.
Election and Term - As soon as practical after the councillors-elect have been qualified following each biennial election, the members of the town council shall elect from among its members a council president who shall serve during the current term of office. The Town Council shall hold elections for President at its first meeting in January.
[Approved 6-13-2011 by Ord. No. 2011-012]
Powers and Duties - The council president shall preside at all meetings of the town council, regulate its proceedings and shall decide all questions of order. The council president shall appoint all members of all committees of the town council, whether special or standing. The council president shall have the same powers to vote upon all measures coming before the town council as any other member of the town council. The council president shall perform such other duties consistent with the office as may be provided by charter, by ordinance or by other vote of the town council. The council president shall be recognized as the official head of the town for all ceremonial purposes and shall be recognized by the courts for the purposes of serving civil process.
Council Vice-President - The members of the town council shall also elect from among the council's members a council vice-president who shall serve as acting president during the temporary absence or disability of the council president during the current term of office. The powers of an acting council president shall be limited to only those powers of the office indispensably essential to the performance of the duties of the office during the period of such temporary absence or disability and no others.
No person shall simultaneously hold more than 1 elective town office. Unless such service may otherwise be authorized by the charter, no member of the town council shall, while a member of the town council hold any other town office or employment for which a salary or other emolument is payable from the town treasury; but this restriction shall not apply to an office or position under the school committee. No councillor shall hold any compensated appointed town office or employment until 1 year following the date on which his council service has terminated. This provision shall not prevent a town officer or town employee who has taken a leave of absence from such office or employment from resuming the same office or employment following service as a member of the town council.
[Approved 11-3-2015 Town Election]
General Powers - Except as otherwise provided by general or special law or this charter, all powers of the town shall be vested in the town council which shall provide for the exercise thereof and for the performance of all duties and obligations imposed upon the town by such law or charter provision. The town may enter into contracts for the exercise of its corporate powers on the terms and conditions authorized by the town council by ordinance.
License Board - There shall be a license board and it shall be the licensing authority of the town of Randolph and shall, as authorized by the laws of the commonwealth, have all power to issue all licenses, to make all necessary rules and regulations regarding the issuance of the licenses, to attach conditions and restrictions to the licenses as it considers to be in the public interest and to enforce all laws relating to the licenses.
The license board shall consist of 7 full-time members, 3 of whom shall be residents of the town of Randolph. The license board shall have 3 alternates, all of whom shall be residents of the town of Randolph recommended by the council president and confirmed by the town council.
The full-time license board members shall consist of the following: the Randolph police chief; the Randolph fire chief; the Randolph building inspector; the Randolph health inspector; and 3 town residents, 1 of whom shall be recommended by the council president and confirmed by the town council.
Each member shall serve a 2-year term. All license board meetings shall be held at 7:00 P.M. on any weekday except Monday.
No elected official within the commonwealth shall be eligible to serve as a license board member. A license board member shall not be compensated by the town in the member's role as a license board member.
The license board shall have authority and jurisdiction over licenses issued under town by-laws or the General Laws, including licenses issued pursuant to chapter 138 or 140 of the General Laws.
The license board shall have licensing authority and jurisdiction regarding licenses granted under this authority consistent with the board's legal authority to regulate conduct which is in the best interests of the public and is intended to protect the public welfare and safety of the inhabitants of Randolph.
The license board shall regulate common victuallers licenses and entertainment licenses granted under chapter 140 of the General Laws. Nothing in this section shall limit the authority of the license board under the General Laws over which the license board has authority under powers conferred to it by applicable law or the town charter or an applicable town by-law.
Exercise of Powers - Except as otherwise provided by general law or by this charter, the legislative powers of the town council may be exercised in a manner determined by it.
Quorum - The presence of 5 members shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business, but a smaller number may adjourn from time to time. Except as otherwise provided by the charter, the affirmative vote of 5 members shall be required to adopt any ordinance or appropriation order.
Rules of Procedure - The town council shall, from time to time, adopt rules regulating its procedures which shall be in addition to the following:
Regular meetings of the town council shall be held at a time and place fixed by ordinance.
Special meetings of the town council shall be held at the call of the council president, or, on the call of any 3 or more members, by written notice delivered in hand or to the place of residence of each member and which contains a listing of the items to be acted upon. A copy of the notice to members shall, forthwith, be posted upon the town bulletin board.
All sessions of the town council and of every committee or subcommittee thereof, shall meet subject to sections 23A to 23C, inclusive, and section 24 of chapter 39 of the General Laws.
Editor's Note: MGL c. 39, §§ 23A to 23C, regarding open meetings of governmental bodies, were repealed in 2009. See now MGL c. 30A, §§ 18 through 25.
In General - The town council may make investigations into the affairs of the town and into the conduct and performance of any town agency and for this purpose may subpoena witnesses, administer oaths and require the production of evidence.
Town Officers, Members of Town Agencies, Employees - The town council may require any town officer, member of a town agency or town employee to appear before it to give such information as the town council may require in relation to the municipal services, functions, powers, or duties which are within the scope of responsibility of such person.
Town Manager - The town council may require the town manager to appear before it at any time to provide specific information on the conduct of any aspect of the business of the town which is within his control under this charter or under any law of the commonwealth.
The town manager may bring with him on any such occasion any assistant, department head or other town officer or employee to assist him in responding to questions which may be posed to him.
Notice - Except in cases of emergency the town council shall give not less than 5 days notice in writing to any person it may request to appear before it under this section. The notice shall include specific questions on which the town council seeks information and no person called to appear before the town council under this section shall be required to respond to any question not relevant or related to those presented to him in advance and in writing. Notice shall be by delivery in hand, or by registered or certified mail to the last known place of residence of any such person.
The town council, by the affirmative vote of at least 5 members, shall appoint a town accountant, a town attorney and a board of registrars.
Clerk of the Council - The council president shall appoint, subject to the approval of the town council, a clerk of the council, who may be the town clerk, as determined by the Town Council. The clerk of the council shall give notice of council meetings to the members thereof and to the public, keep the journal of its proceedings and perform such other duties as may be provided by ordinance or by other vote of the town council.
[Approved 6-13-2011 by Ord. No. 2011-012]
Salaries - The officers appointed by the council president shall receive such salaries as may, from time to time, be provided for such office by ordinance.
Emergency Ordinances - No ordinance shall be passed finally on the date it is introduced, except in case of special emergency involving the health or safety of the people or their property.
No ordinance shall be regarded as an emergency ordinance unless the emergency is defined and declared in a preamble to such ordinance, separately voted upon and receiving the affirmative vote of 6 members of the town council.
No ordinance making a grant, renewal or extension, whatever its kind or nature, of any franchise or special privilege of any kind or nature shall be passed as an emergency measure, and, except as provided in sections 70 and 71 of chapter 164 and in chapter 166 of the General Laws, no such grant, renewal or extension shall be made otherwise than by ordinance.
Emergency ordinances shall stand repealed on the sixty-first day following the adoption thereof, unless an earlier expiration date is specified in the emergency ordinance, or unless a measure passed in conformity with the procedures for measures generally has been passed extending it.
Measures, In General - Excepting only proposed ordinances, appropriation orders and loan authorizations, the town council may pass any other measure through all of its stages at any 1 meeting, unless a member of the town council objects; but, if a single member objects, a vote on the measure shall be postponed to the next meeting of the town council.
On the first occasion that the question of adopting any measure is put to the town council, except an emergency measure as defined in subsection (a), if a single member objects to the taking of a vote, the vote shall be postponed until the next meeting of the town council regular or special meeting. If, when the matter is next taken up for a vote, 4 or more members object to the taking of the vote, the matter shall be further postponed for not less than an additional 5 days. This procedure shall not be used more than once for any measure, notwithstanding any amendment made to the original measure.
Publication - Every proposed ordinance, appropriation order or loan authorization except emergency ordinances as provided in subsection (a), shall be published once in full in a local newspaper and in any additional manner as may be provided by ordinance, at least 5 days before its final passage. After final passage the proposed ordinance shall be posted on the town bulletin board and otherwise published as may be required by ordinance; provided, however, that whenever a proposed ordinance or codification of ordinances or other measure would exceed in length 10 column inches, in lieu of publication in a local newspaper, the same may be published and made available at the office of the town clerk in booklet or pamphlet form and if so published and available at least 10 days before its final passage shall be deemed sufficient notice. Whenever the town council provides for publication in a booklet or pamphlet form in lieu of the newspaper publication, it shall, at least 5 days before final passage, publish in a local newspaper a general summary of the proposed ordinance, or ordinances and a notice stating the times and places at which copies of the booklet or pamphlet may be obtained or reviewed by the public.
Councillor-at-Large - If a vacancy shall occur in the office of councillor-at-large during the first 18 months of the term for which councillors are elected, the vacancy shall be filled in descending order of votes received by the candidate for the office of councillor-at-large at the preceding town election who received the largest number of votes without being elected, provided, however, that such person remains eligible and willing to serve, and provided, further, that such person received votes at least equal to 30 per cent of the vote total received by the person receiving the largest number of votes for the office of councillor-at-large at said election. The town clerk shall certify such candidate to the office of councillor-at-large to serve for the balance of the then unexpired term.
If a vacancy shall occur in the office of councillor-at-large during the last 6 months of the term for which councillors-at-large are elected, the vacancy shall be filled by the person who receives the highest number of votes for the office of councillor-at-large at the biennial town election and who is not then serving as a member of the town council. Such person shall forthwith be certified and shall serve for the last 2 months of the concluding term in addition to the term for which such person was elected.
District - If a vacancy shall occur in the office of district councillor, the vacancy shall be filled in the same manner as provided in subsection (a) for the office of councillor-at-large except that the list shall be of the candidates for the office of district councillor in the district in which the vacancy occurs; provided, however, if there exists no candidate on such list who remains eligible and willing to serve, the next highest ranking candidate from among the candidates for election as councilor-at-large who is a resident of the district in which the vacancy exists shall be certified and shall serve until the next regular election if such candidate remains a resident of the district, is willing to serve as a district councillor and received votes in the district at least equal to 30 per cent of the vote total received by the person receiving the largest number of votes for the office of district councillor at said election. The town clerk shall certify such candidate to the office of district councillor to serve for the balance of the then unexpired term.
Filling of Vacancies By Town Council - Whenever a vacancy shall occur in the office of councillor-at-large or in that of district councillor and there is no available candidate to fill such vacancy in the manner provided in subsections (a) or (b), the vacancy shall be filled by the remaining members of the town council. Persons elected to fill a vacancy by the town council shall serve only until the next regular election or, if so decided, a special election, at which time the vacancy shall be filled by the voters and the person chosen to fill such vacancy shall forthwith be sworn and shall serve for the remainder of the unexpired term. Persons serving as town councillors under this section shall not be entitled to have the words "candidate for re-election" printed against their names on the election ballot.