Town of Dedham, MA
Norfolk County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Meeting of the Town of Dedham as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
[Adopted as Ch. 1 of the 1996 By-laws; amended 11-18-2013 STM by Art. 16]
The following provisions shall constitute and be entitled "Revised By-Laws of the Town of Dedham". These by-laws, if adopted at a Special Town Meeting shall take effect at the dissolution of the next Annual Town Meeting, and if adopted at an Annual Town Meeting shall take effect at its dissolution, subject in either case to the requirements of law.
The provisions of these by-laws so far as they are the same as those in force at the adoption of this revision shall be construed as a continuation thereof and not as new by-laws. Except as stated in this section, all by-laws in force upon the effective date of this revision, other than those entitled "The Personnel, Wage and Salary Administration Plan", "Plumbing By-Laws", "Building Code", "Wiring Code", and "Zoning By-Laws" not included in this revision are hereby repealed. The foregoing plan, by-laws and codes not thus included shall continue to be applicable in the form in effect immediately prior to this revision until amended or repealed in accordance with law. The repeal of a by-law hereby shall not affect any act done, any liability incurred under such by-law prior to its repeal. Such repeal shall not affect any action or prosecution pending at the time of a penalty or a forfeiture incurred under such repealed by-law. The repeal of a by-law shall not thereby have the effect of renewing any by-law theretofore repealed.
Words and phrases specifying or naming any officer, board or committee of the Town shall be construed as including the lawful successor, or the person or persons having substantially the same powers and performing substantially the same duties as such officer, board or committee.
Whenever in a by-law anything is prohibited from being done without the license or permission of a certain officer, board or committee, such officer, board or committee shall have the right to license or permit such thing to be done.
[Amended 11-17-2014 ATM by Art. 18]
By-laws may be adopted, repealed or amended at any Town Meeting in accordance with law. The Town Clerk shall hereby be authorized to assign appropriate numbers to by-law sections, subsections, paragraphs and subparagraphs, where none are approved by Town Meeting, and, if such are approved by Town Meeting, after consultation with the Town Manager, to make non-substantive, editorial revisions to ensure consistent and appropriate sequencing and numbering, provided that such editorial revisions shall be identified by a footnote or other convention.
A. 
Enforcement through Indictment or on Complaint to District Court. Any by-law of the Town of Dedham may be enforced through any lawful means in law or in equity including but not limited to enforcement by criminal indictment or on complaint before the district court pursuant to G.L. c.40, § 21. Each day that a violation exists shall constitute a separate offense. A fine of up to $300 may be imposed for each violation.
B. 
Enforcement through Non-criminal Disposition.
Any by-law of the Town of Dedham, or rule or regulation of its officers, boards or departments adopted at a public meeting for which notice is provided in a newspaper of local circulation at least once a week for the two weeks prior to the meeting and which is on file with the Town Clerk, may in the discretion of the Town official who is the appropriate enforcing person, be enforced through non-criminal disposition as provided in G.L. c.40, § 21D. The specific penalty for purposes of non-criminal disposition for each such violation, if not otherwise specified, shall be as follows:
[Amended 11-17-2014 ATM by Art. 18]
First violation – warning
Second violation – $50
Third violation – $100
Fourth and subsequent violations – $300
Each day a violation exists shall constitute a separate violation for purposes of this by-law.
The term “enforcing person” as used in this by-law shall mean: any Town of Dedham police officer with respect to any offense; as well as the Fire Chief, Town Manager, Director of Department of Public Works, Building Inspector, Conservation Commission or its agent, Board of Health or its agent, Sealer of Weights and Measures, Code Enforcement Officer, Zoning Enforcement officer, and their designees, and such other officials as the Board of Selectmen may from time to time designate, each with respect to violation of by-laws, rules and regulations within their respective jurisdictions. If more than one official has jurisdiction in a given case, any such official may be an enforcing person with respect thereto.
Any particular fine specified in a by-law shall be included on a list maintained in the office of a Town Clerk.
C. 
Local Appeal Process. The fines set forth in the notice of violation issued in accordance with this By-law shall be payable to the Town within 21 days of the date set forth on the notice or, if the person so notified seeks to contest the violation, such person may request a hearing before the District Court. The person so notified may also seek to resolve the matter locally by appealing the issuance of the notice, in writing, to the Town Manager no later than 14 days following the date of the notice of violation. The Town Manager or the Manager’s designee shall, no later than 20 days following the date of the notice of violation, decide the appeal, or hold a hearing to determine such additional facts as may be necessary. If the person so notified is dissatisfied with the Town Manager’s determination and resolution, they may contest the violation as set forth in the notice by seeking a hearing before the District Court in accordance with G.L. c.40, § 21D. The Manager’s failure to make a determination within the time set forth herein shall be construed for purposes of this paragraph as a determination to void the notice of violation.
[Amended 11-17-2014 ATM by Art. 18]
No person shall be prosecuted or tried for any breach of the provisions of any of these by-laws unless the complaint for such breach shall be made within six months from the time of committing such breach.
A. 
Within these by-laws, words importing the singular number may extend and be applied to several persons or things, words importing the plural number may include the singular, and words importing a gender shall include the other gender.
B. 
Unless another meaning is defined in the body of a section or is clearly apparent from the manner in which the word is used, the following words as used in these by-laws shall have the following meanings:
CHARTER
The Dedham Home Rule Charter of 1974 and any amendments to it which have been or may hereafter be adopted.
CODE ENFORCEMENT OFFICER
A person designated to assist with the enforcement of all rules, regulations and by-laws of the Town of Dedham.
DAYS
Business days, not including Saturdays, Sundays and legal holidays when the time set is less than seven days; when the time set is seven days or more, every day shall be counted. When the last day falls on a Saturday, Sunday or legal holiday the period shall be extended to the end of the next day which is not a Saturday, Sunday or legal holiday.
EMERGENCY
A sudden, unexpected, unforeseen happening, occurrence, event or condition which necessitates immediate action.
GENERAL LAWS
Refer to the General Laws of Massachusetts, a codification and revision of statutes enacted on December 22, 1920, and including all amendments thereto subsequently adopted; citations to the General Laws shall be in the following format, "G.L. c.__, § __."
LOCAL NEWSPAPER
A newspaper of general circulation in the Town of Dedham.
MAJORITY VOTE
A majority of those present and voting, provided that a quorum of the body is present when the vote is taken, unless a higher number is required by law.
MULTIPLE MEMBER BODY
Any Town body consisting of two or more persons and whether styled board, commission, committee, sub-committee, or otherwise and however elected or appointed or otherwise constituted.
PERSON
Any natural person, corporation, society, association, partnership or other organization which acts as a body.
QUORUM
Unless otherwise required by law or this charter, shall mean a majority of the members of a multiple member body then in office, not including any vacancies which might then exist.
TOWN
The Town of Dedham.
TOWN AGENCY
Any board, commission, committee, department, division or office of the Town government.
TOWN BULLETIN BOARD
The bulletin board in the Town hall and in the libraries on which official Town notices are posted and those at other locations within the Town which may from time to time be designated as Town bulletin boards by by-law, or by vote of the Board of Selectmen.
TOWN OFFICER
When used without further qualification or description, shall mean a person having charge of an office or department of the Town who in the exercise of the powers or duties of that position exercises some portion of the sovereign power of the Town.
VOTERS
Registered voters of the Town of Dedham.