Town of Ashland, MA
Middlesex County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town of Ashland 11-14-2007 Annual Town Meeting, Art. 13. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Zoning — See Ch. 282.
The trust shall be called the "Town of Ashland Affordable Housing Trust Fund."
The purpose of the Trust shall be to provide for the preservation and creation of affordable housing in the Town of Ashland for the benefit of low and moderate income households. In furtherance of this purpose, the Trustees are hereby authorized, in accordance with the procedures set forth herein, to acquire by gift, purchase or otherwise real property, personal property, or money, both tangible and intangible, of every sort and description; to use such property, both real and personal, and money in such manner as the Trustees shall deem most appropriate to carry out such purpose, provided however, that all property and money held by the Trust and the net earnings thereof shall be used exclusively for the preservation and creation in the Town of Ashland of affordable housing for the purposes for which this Trust was formed.
[Amended 11-16-2009 STM, Art. 12; 11-20-2019 STM, Art. 13]
There shall be a board of trustees of the Ashland Affordable Housing Trust Fund, in this section called the board, which shall include five (5) Trustees to be appointed by the Select Board of which one (1) Trustee so appointed shall be a member of the Select Board. Trustees shall serve for a term not to exceed two years. A quorum is to be three (3) authorized trustees of the board. Only persons who are residents or employees of the Town of Ashland shall be eligible to hold the office of Trustee. Trustees shall serve for a term of two years, except that two of the initial trustee appointments shall be for a term of one year, and may be re-appointed at the discretion of the Select Board. Any Trustee who ceases to be a resident or employee of the Town of Ashland shall cease to be a Trustee hereunder and shall promptly provide a written notification of the change in residence to the Board and to the Town Clerk. Any Trustee may resign by written instrument, signed and acknowledged by such Trustee and duly filed with the Town Clerk. If a Trustee shall die, resign, or for any other reason cease to be a Trustee hereunder before his/her term of office expires, a successor shall be appointed by the Select Board to fill such vacancy provided that in each case the said appointment and acceptance in writing by the Trustee so appointed is filed with the Town Clerk. Upon the appointment of any succeeding Trustee and the filing of such appointment the title to the Trust estate shall thereupon and without the necessity of any conveyance be vested in such succeeding Trustee jointly with the remaining Trustees. Reference to the Trustee shall mean the Trustee or Trustees for the time being hereunder.
[Amended 5-7-2008 ATM, Art. 14]
The Trust shall meet at least quarterly at such time and at such place as the Trustees shall determine. Notice of all meetings of the Trust shall be given in accordance with the provisions of the Open Meeting Law, G.L. Chapter 39, Sections 23A, 23B and 23C. A quorum at any meeting shall be a majority of the Trustees, qualified and present in person.
The powers of the board of trustees, all of which shall be carried on in furtherance of the purposes set forth in General Laws Chapter 44 Section 55C, shall include the following:
to accept and receive real property, personal property or money, by gift, grant, contribution, devise or transfer from any person, firm, corporation or other public or private entity, including but not limited to money, grants of funds or other property tendered to the trust in connection with any ordinance or by-law or any general or special law or any other source, including money from chapter 44B;
to purchase and retain real or personal property, including without restriction investments that yield a high rate of income or no income;
to sell, lease, exchange, transfer or convey any personal, mixed, or real property at public auction or by private contract for such consideration and on such terms as to credit or otherwise, and to make such contracts and enter into such undertaking relative to trust property as the board deems advisable notwithstanding the length of any such lease or contract;
to execute, acknowledge and deliver deeds, assignments, transfers, pledges, leases, covenants, contracts, promissory notes, releases and other instruments sealed or unsealed, necessary, proper or incident to any transaction in which the board engages for the accomplishment of the purposes of the trust;
to employ advisors and agents, such as accountants, appraisers and lawyers as the board deems necessary;
to pay reasonable compensation and expenses to all advisors and agents and to apportion such compensation between income and principal as the board deems advisable;
to apportion receipts and charges between incomes and principal as the board deems advisable, to amortize premiums and establish sinking funds for such purpose, and to create reserves for depreciation depletion or otherwise;
to participate in any reorganization, recapitalization, merger or similar transactions; and to give proxies or powers of attorney with or without power of substitution to vote any securities or certificates of interest; and to consent to any contract, lease, mortgage, purchase or sale of property, by or between any corporation and any other corporation or person;
to deposit any security with any protective reorganization committee, and to delegate to such committee such powers and authority with relation thereto as the board may deem proper and to pay, out of trust property, such portion of expenses and compensation of such committee as the board may deem necessary and appropriate;
to carry property for accounting purposes other than acquisition date values;
to borrow money on such terms and conditions and from such sources as the board deems advisable, to mortgage and pledge trust assets as collateral; to the extent of trust net assets, and subject to approval by 2/3 vote from Town Meeting for greater than the extent of trust net assets. Total trust fund borrowing shall not exceed $15,000,000 at any one time without Town Meeting approval.
[Amended 5-1-2013 ATM, Art. 25]
to make distributions or divisions of principal in kind;
to comprise, attribute, defend, enforce, release, settle or otherwise adjust claims in favor or against the trust, including claims for taxes, and to accept any property, either in total or partial satisfaction of any indebtedness or other obligation, and subject to the provisions of this act, to continue to hold the same for such period of time as the board may deem appropriate;
to manage or improve real property; and to abandon any property which the board determined not to be worth retaining;
to hold all or part of the trust property uninvested for such purposes and for such time as the board may deem appropriate; and
to extend the time for payment of any obligation to the trust.
A majority of Trustees may exercise any or all of the powers of the Trustees hereunder and may execute on behalf of the Trustees any and all instruments with the same effect as though executed by all the Trustees. No Trustee shall be required to give bond. No license of court shall be required to confirm the validity of any transaction entered into by the Trustees with respect to the Trust Estate.
Neither the Trustees nor any agent or officer of the Trust shall have the authority to bind the Town, except in the manner specifically authorized herein. The Trust is a public employer and the Trustees are public employees for the purposes of G.L. Chapter 258. The Trust shall be deemed a municipal agency and the Trustees special municipal employees for the purposes of G.L. Chapter 268A.
The Town Treasurer shall be the custodian of the funds of the Trust. The books and records of the Trust shall be audited annually by an independent auditor in accordance with accepted accounting practices for municipalities.
[Amended 11-20-2019 STM, Art. 13]
This Trust shall be of indefinite duration, until terminated in accordance with applicable law. Upon termination of the Trust, subject to the payment of or making provisions for the payment of all obligations and liabilities of the Trust and the Trustees, the net assets of the Trust shall be transferred to the Town and held by the Select Board for affordable housing purposes. In making any such distribution, the Trustees may, subject to the approval of the Select Board, sell all or any portion of the Trust property and distribute the net proceeds thereof or they may distribute any of the assets in kind. The powers of the Trustees shall continue until the affairs of the Trust are concluded.
The title to the various Articles herein are for convenience only and are not to be considered part of said Articles nor shall they affect the meaning or the language of any such Article.