[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Council of the Township of Eastampton 6-17-1980 by Ord. No. 1980-10 (Ch. 11 of the 1974 Township Code); amended in its entirety at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I). Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
Except as hereinafter provided, the Township of Eastampton, hereinafter known as the "Township," shall, upon the request of any present or former official, employee or appointee of the Township, consider providing for indemnification and legal defense of any civil action, with or without reservations and/or contingencies, brought against said person or persons arising from an act or omission legitimately arising out of the performance and within the scope of their public duties, provided same is not otherwise in conflict with other provisions of this chapter, Township policies or law.
The terms of this chapter and the definitions of "official," "employee" and "appointee" are to be construed liberally in order to effectuate the purposes of this chapter, except that these terms shall not mean:
Any person who is not a natural person;
Any person while providing goods or services of any kind under any contract with the Township, except an employment contract;
Any person while providing legal or engineering services for compensation, unless said person is a full-time employee of the Township; and
Any person or entity who, as a condition of his or her appointment or contract, is required to indemnify and defend the Township and/or secure insurance.
The Township shall provide for defense of and indemnify any present or former official, employee or appointee of the Township who becomes a defendant in a civil action if the person or persons involved:
Acted or failed to act in a matter in which the Township has or had an interest;
Acted or failed to act in the discharge of a duty imposed or authorized by law; and
Acted or failed to take action in good faith. For purposes of this chapter, the duty and authority of the Township to defend and indemnify shall extend to a cross-claim or counterclaim against said person.
The Township shall not indemnify any person against the payment of punitive damages, penalties or fines, but may solely arrange for the legal defense of such claims in accord with the standards set forth herein. The Township may refuse to provide for the defense and indemnification of any civil action referred to herein if it is determined that:
The act or omission did not occur within the scope of a duty authorized or imposed by law;
The act or failure to act was the result of actual fraud, willful misconduct or actual malice of the person requesting defense and indemnification; or
The defense of the action or proceeding by the Township would create a conflict of interest between the Township and the person or persons involved.
In any other action or proceeding, including criminal proceedings, the Township may provide for the defense of a present or former official, employee or appointee, if the Eastampton Township Council concludes that such representation is in the best interest of the Township and that the person to be defended under the overall circumstances presented to it fit the purposes and intent of this chapter, Township policies and law.
Whenever the Township provides for the defense of any action set forth herein, and as a condition of such defense, the Township may assume exclusive control over the representation of such persons defended, and such person shall cooperate fully with the Township and/or its legal counsel.
The Township may provide for the defense pursuant to this chapter by authorizing an attorney to act on behalf of the person being defended or by employing other counsel for this purpose or by asserting the right of the Township under any appropriate insurance policy that requires the insurer to provide defense.