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Posted on: November 30, 2018

Special Town Meeting - December 17, 2018

In the name of The Commonwealth of Massachusetts, you are hereby directed to notify and warn the inhabitants of said Town, qualified to vote in elections and in Town affairs, to meet at the TOWN HALL in said Ashfield on MONDAY, the SEVENTEENTH day of DECEMBER, 2018, at SEVEN O’ CLOCK in the evening, then and there to act on the following articles:

Article 1:  To see if the Town will vote to raise and appropriate, transfer from available funds, or otherwise provide $15,055 to the Highland Ambulance expense account or act relative thereto.

Article 2:  To see if the Town will vote to raise and appropriate, transfer from available funds, or otherwise provide a sum of money for Mandated Transfer Station Improvements or act relative thereto.

Article 3:  To see if the Town of Ashfield will vote to amend the Town's Zoning Bylaws by adding a to Section VIII: Administration, as provided below:

K. Hiring of Consultants

  • Expenses for advertising, notices, inspections and professional review will be borne by the applicant.
  • As provided by M.G.L. Ch. 44 §53G, the Ashfield Planning Board (“the Board”) may impose reasonable fees for the employment of outside consultants, engaged by the Board, for specific expert services when in the opinion of the  Board the services are necessary for the Board to come to a final decision on an application submitted pursuant to the requirements of: The Town of Ashfield Zoning Bylaws, Town of Ashfield Subdivision Regulations, or any other state or municipal statute, bylaw or regulation, as they may be amended or enacted from time to time.  The Planning Board may also impose fees for other consultant services for the review of the plans, surveys or inspections under any of the above-referenced laws or regulations.
  • Consultant Services: In hiring outside consultants, the Planning Board may engage professional engineers, planners, landscape architects, wildlife scientists, lawyers, designers, or other appropriate professionals able to assist the Board and to ensure compliance with all relevant laws, ordinances, bylaws and regulations.  Specific consultant services may include – but are not limited to – analysis of applications, title searches, mapping of lot and/or municipal boundaries and/or rights-of-way, and environmental or land use law.  Services may also include on-site monitoring during construction, or other services related to the project deemed necessary by the Board.  The consultant(s) shall be chosen by, and report only to, the Planning Board and/or its administrator.  Consultants retained shall have an educational degree in or related to the field at issue, or three or more years of practice in the field at issue, or a related field.
  • Special Account: Funds received pursuant to these rules shall be deposited with the Town treasurer, who shall establish a special account for this purpose.  Expenditures from this special account may be made at the direction of the Planning Board without further appropriation as provided in M.G.L. Ch. 44 §53G.  Expenditures from this account shall be made only in connection with a specific project or projects for which a consultant fee has been collected from the applicant, and only in connection with the Board carrying out its responsibilities under the law.  Expenditures of accrued interest may also be made for these purposes.  Any excess amount in the account attributable to a specific project, including any accrued interest, at the completion of said project shall be repaid to the applicant or to the applicant’s successor in interest, and a final report of said account shall be made available to the applicant or to the applicant’s successor in interest.
  • Reporting Requirements: The Town Accountant shall submit annually a report of said special account to the Select Board and Town Administrator, for their review.  The report shall be published in the Town annual report.  The Town Accountant shall submit annually a copy of this report to the Massachusetts Director of the Bureau of Accounts.
  • Appeals of choice of Consultant: Applicants may appeal the selection of the consultant to the Select Board.  The grounds for such an appeal shall be limited to claims that the consultant selected has a conflict of interest or does not possess the minimum, required qualifications.  The required time limits for action upon an application by the Planning Board shall be extended by the duration of the administrative appeal.  In the event that no decision is made by the Select Board within one month following the filing of the appeal, the selection made by the Planning Board shall stand.  Such an administrative appeal shall not preclude further judicial review if otherwise permitted by law, on grounds provided for in this section. 
  • or act relative thereto.

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