Town of Orleans, MA
Barnstable County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents

§ 1 Finance Committee

8-1-1 A Finance Committee of nine members shall be appointed by the Moderator for three-year overlapping terms. Three members shall be appointed annually.
8-1-2 Any person duly appointed to the Finance Committee shall take up the duties of the office upon the first day of the fiscal year, provided that such person shall have been sworn to the faithful performance of said person's duties by the Town Clerk.
8-1-3 Vacancies in the Finance Committee shall be filled by the Moderator within thirty days after the Moderator has been notified, in writing, of the vacancy on the Committee. If the Moderator shall fail to fill the vacancy within thirty days after such notification, the remaining members of the Committee shall fill the vacancy by majority vote.
8-1-4 Any person appointed to fill out an unexpired term shall take up the duties immediately, provided that the person first shall have been sworn to the faithful performance of the person's duties by the Town Clerk.
8-1-5 No member of the Finance Committee shall hold any other elected or appointed Town office.
8-1-6 It is the responsibility of the Finance Committee to independently examine and analyze the Town's financial affairs, including proposed budgets, the Capital Improvements Plan, and all other proposals which would have a financial impact; and to inform the citizens of the Town of its findings and recommendations.

§ 2 Submission of Budget and Budget Message

8-2-1 On or before the fifteenth day of September of each year, the Town Administrator shall promulgate a budget schedule which shall set forth the calendar dates relating to the development of the operating budget.
8-2-2 Said schedule shall be in accordance with this chapter unless deviation therefrom is recommended by the Town Administrator, and approved by the Board of Selectmen and the Finance Committee.
8-2-3 On or before the first day of October of each year, the Town Administrator shall request and receive from the Collector-Treasurer, the Town Accountant/Director of Municipal Finance, the Board of Selectmen, and the Assessors the estimated revenues for the ensuing fiscal year. [Amended 5-11-2015 ATM, Art. 53, effective 5-18-2016]
8-2-4 Upon receipt of any additional specific fiscal data provided by the Commonwealth or from any other source, such estimates shall be revised, updated, and submitted forthwith to the Town Administrator.
8-2-5 The Board of Selectmen and Finance Committee shall conduct a joint public hearing, chaired by the Board of Selectmen, on or before September 20 of each year to solicit public priorities in upcoming fiscal years.
8-2-6 On or before the first day of November of each year, the Board of Selectmen, after consulting with the Town Administrator, shall issue its policy statement relating to the budget for the ensuing fiscal year. The statement shall establish the general guidelines of the next budget for the Town, in accordance with the Board's responsibility under section 3-2-3.
8-2-7 All department heads, multi-member bodies shall submit their budget requests to the Town Administrator on or before November 15 of each year.
8-2-8 On or before January 15 of each year, the Town Administrator shall submit to the Board of Selectmen and the Finance Committee a comprehensive budget for all Town functions for the ensuing fiscal year and an accompanying budget message.
8-2-9 The budget message shall explain the budget both in fiscal terms and in terms of what specific projects are contemplated in the year ahead. It shall: (a) outline the proposed financial policies of the Town for the ensuing fiscal year; (b) describe the important features of the budget; (c) indicate any major changes from the current year in financial policies, expenditures, and revenues, together with the reasons for such changes; (d) summarize the Town's debt position; and (e) include such other material as the Town Administrator may deem appropriate.
8-2-10 The budget shall provide a complete financial plan for all Town funds and activities and shall be in such format as the Town Administrator, in consultation with the Finance Committee, may suggest, provided that the format is compatible with the standards recommended by the Commonwealth's Director of Accounts and/or the State Association of Finance Committees. The budget shall indicate proposed expenditures for both current operations and capital projects during the ensuing fiscal year, detailed by departments, offices, multi-member bodies, and specific purposes and projects.

§ 3 Action on Proposed Budget

8-3-1 The Board of Selectmen shall within thirty days of the submission of the budget by the Town Administrator act thereon and submit any budget revisions to the Finance Committee at that time. The Board of Selectmen shall also transmit the budget request of the School Committee, with recommendations, to the Finance Committee.
8-3-2 On or before March 15 of each year, the Finance Committee and Board of Selectmen shall conduct a joint public hearing on the proposed budget. The hearing agenda shall be established by the Finance Committee in consultation with the Board of Selectmen and the Town Administrator. [Amended 5-11-2015 ATM, Art. 51, effective 5-18-2016]
8-3-3 The Finance Committee shall issue printed recommendations on all articles having financial implications in the Finance Committee report within the Warrant, by flier distributed on the floor of Town Meeting, or by announcement during Town Meeting. In preparing its recommendations, the Committee may require the Town Administrator, any Town department, office, or multi-member body to furnish it with appropriate financial reports and budgetary information.
8-3-4 The Board of Selectmen shall be responsible for presenting the budget to the Town Meeting.

§ 4 Budget Adoption

8-4-1 The Town Meeting shall adopt the budget, with or without amendments, prior to the beginning of the fiscal year.

§ 5 Capital Improvements Plan.

[Amended 5-11-2015 ATM, Art. 52, effective 5-18-2016]
8-5-1 The Town Administrator shall prepare a five year Capital Improvements Plan (CIP) and an annual Capital Budget which shall be designed to deal with unmet long range needs of the Town and to implement the goals and objectives of the Orleans Comprehensive Plan as it may be amended from time to time. The CIP shall include land acquisitions, buildings and improvements, machinery and equipment, vehicles, and infrastructure including roads, water mains, storm drainage and other publicly owned utilities. The Board of Selectmen may establish more detailed policies relating to the refinement and implementation of the CIP.
8-5-2 The Capital Improvements Plan (CIP) shall include proposed expenditures for all town activities and departments for the capital improvements defined in Section 8-5-1. Proposed capital improvements for the regional school and other regional entities shall be included in the CIP provided that such inclusion is consistent with the regional or inter-municipal agreements establishing such entities. In addition, the CIP shall include regional, county, state and federal grants that may be used to support and finance capital improvements, facilities and equipment through grants, loans or inter-municipal agreements.
8-5-3 The Capital Improvements Plan (CIP) shall include: (a) A clear summary of its contents; (b) A list of all capital expenditures proposed for all categories of items listed in 8-5-1 above for the next five fiscal years and projects to be included in the proposed Capital Budget for the next fiscal year, together with all supporting data; (c) cost estimates, proposed methods of financing, sources of funds and terms of debt repayment along with a recommended time schedule for each capital expenditure to be financed over a period of more than one year; and (d) the estimated annual cost of operating and maintaining the facilities and/or equipment to be constructed, improved or acquired.
The information in the CIP shall be updated at least annually and submitted to and approved by the annual or special town meetings as appropriate. In the case of multi-year projects, it shall be adjusted to insure that the CIP accurately reflects the projected annual costs of all capital projects.
8-5-4 The Town Administrator shall transmit the Capital Improvements Plan (CIP) and the proposed annual Capital Budget to the Board of Selectmen no later than January 15 of each year. The Board of Selectmen shall, within 30 days, act on the CIP and Capital Budget, with or without amendments, and submit the documents to the Finance Committee for its review and comment. The Board of Selectmen and the Finance Committee, after the public hearing held under Section 8-6-1 below, shall report their recommendations to the Town Meeting.

§ 6 Notice of Public Hearing on Capital Improvement Plan.

[Amended 5-11-2015 ATM, Art. 52, effective 5-18-2016]
8-6-1 The Board of Selectmen shall publish, in one or more newspapers of general circulation in Town, the general summary of the proposed Capital Improvements Plan (CIP) and Capital Budget and a notice stating: (a) the times and places where copies of the complete CIP and Capital Budget are available for inspection; and (b) the date, time and place, not less than seven days following such publication, where the Board of Selectmen and the Finance Committee will conduct a public hearing on said plan to be chaired by the Finance Committee. The joint hearing shall be held no later than March 1 of each year in order to allow the Board of Selectmen and the Finance Committee to include their respective positions on the CIP and the Capital Budget to be printed in the Warrant for the Town Meeting.

§ 7 Action of Town Meeting.

[Amended 5-11-2015 ATM, Art. 52, effective 5-18-2016]
8-7-1 The Town Meeting shall act on the five year Capital Improvements Plan (CIP) and the annual Capital Budget, provided all proposed projects included in the Capital Budget have been included in the CIP in the prior fiscal year. The Capital Budget may consist of more than one article in the Warrant for the Town Meeting. Any articles for capital improvements not in compliance with 8-5-1 shall require a three-fourths (3/4) majority vote of the Town Meeting.

§ 8 Annual Audit

8-8-1 An independent audit of the Town's finances shall be performed annually by a certified public accounting firm with experience in municipal audits and/or other public agency audits, chosen by the Board of Selectmen for a term of up to three years. A copy of every auditors' report shall be filed with the Town Clerk, shall be a public record, and a summary thereof shall be published in the next Annual Town Report.