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General Laws of Massachusetts - Chapter 31 Civil Service - Section 1 Definitions

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Section 1. In this chapter, the following words and phrases shall have the following meanings, unless the context requires otherwise:—

“Administrator”, the personnel administrator of the human resources division within the executive office for administration and finance.

“Appointing authority”, any person, board or commission with power to appoint or employ personnel in civil service positions.

“Basic merit principles”, shall mean (a) recruiting, selecting and advancing of employees on the basis of their relative ability, knowledge and skills including open consideration of qualified applicants for initial appointment; (b) providing of equitable and adequate compensation for all employees; (c) providing of training and development for employees, as needed, to assure the advancement and high quality performance of such employees; (d) retaining of employees on the basis of adequacy of their performance, correcting inadequate performance, and separating employees whose inadequate performance cannot be corrected; (e) assuring fair treatment of all applicants and employees in all aspects of personnel administration without regard to political affiliation, race, color, age, national origin, sex, marital status, handicap, or religion and with proper regard for privacy, basic rights outlined in this chapter and constitutional rights as citizens, and; (f) assuring that all employees are protected against coercion for political purposes, and are protected from arbitrary and capricious actions.

“Career management service positions”, those managerial and confidential positions so designated in accordance with the provisions of section forty-eight A.

“Certification”, the designation to an appointing authority by the administrator of sufficient names from an eligible list or register for consideration of the applicants’ qualifications for appointment pursuant to the personnel administration rules.

“Civil service appointment”, an original appointment or a promotional appointment made pursuant to the provisions of the civil service law and rules.

“Civil service employee”, a person holding a civil service appointment.

“Civil service law”, this chapter.

“Civil service law and rules”, this chapter and the rules promulgated pursuant to this chapter.

“Civil service position”, an office or position, appointment to which is subject to the requirements of the civil service law and rules.

“Commission”, the civil service commission of the commonwealth.

“Department” or “division”, the human resources division within the executive office for administration and finance.

“Departmental unit”, a board, commission, department, or any division, institutional component, or other component of a department established by law, ordinance, or by-law.

“Disabled veteran”, any veteran, as defined in this section, who (1) has a continuing service-incurred disability of not less than ten per cent based on wartime service for which he is receiving or entitled to receive compensation from the veterans administration or, provided that such disability is a permanent physical disability, for which he has been retired from any branch of the armed forces and is receiving or is entitled to receive a retirement allowance, or (2) has a continuing service-incurred disability based on wartime service for which he is receiving or is entitled to receive a statutory award from the veterans administration.

“Discharge”, the permanent, involuntary separation of a person from his civil service employment by his appointing authority.

“Eligible list”, a list established by the administrator, pursuant to the civil service law and rules, of persons who have passed an examination; or a re-employment list established pursuant to section forty; or a list of intermittent or reserve fire or police officers as authorized under the provisions of section sixty; or any other list established pursuant to the civil service rules from which certifications are made to appointing authorities to fill positions in the official service.

“Entrance requirements”, the experience and educational prerequisites which an applicant must satisfy in addition to passing a civil service examination to be qualified for appointment to a civil service position.

“Entry level”, a position having a title which is the lowest in a series of titles in a municipal or in the state classification plan, whether or not higher titles in same job series exist in the same department.

“Essay question”, a question in an examination requiring an applicant to compose a written response of one or more sentences or requiring other than a limited response or short answer.

“Executive office”, an office established pursuant to chapter six A or chapter seven.

“Handicap”, any condition or characteristic, physical or mental, which substantially limits one or more major life activities; or a record of such impairment; or the external manifestations of such impairment.

“Labor service”, the composite of all civil service positions whose duties are such that a suitable selection for such positions may be made based upon registration pursuant to section twenty-eight, rather than by competitive examination.

“Layoff”, a temporary discontinuance of employment for lack of work or lack of money.

“Official service”, the composite of all civil service positions not in the labor service.

“Original appointment”, an appointment pursuant to section six or section twenty-eight.

“Performance evaluation”, an evaluation of an employee’s performance in accordance with the standards outlined in section six A to six C, inclusive.

“Permanent employee”, a person who is employed in a civil service position (1) following an original appointment, subject to the serving of a probationary period as required by law, but otherwise without restriction as to the duration of his employment; or (2) following a promotional appointment, without restriction as to the duration of his employment.

“Person with an intellectual disability”, a person certified as having an intellectual disability by the Massachusetts rehabilitation commission.

“Promotional appointment”, an appointment pursuant to section seven or in the labor service, pursuant to the civil service rules, of a person employed in one title to a higher title in the same or a different series, or to another title which is not higher but where substantially dissimilar requirements prevent a transfer pursuant to section thirty-five.

“Provisional employee”, a person who is employed in a civil service position, pursuant to and in accordance with sections twelve, thirteen and fourteen.

“Register”, a list established by the administrator pursuant to the civil service law and rules, from which certifications are made to appointing authorities to fill civil service positions in the labor service.

“Reinstatement”, the restoration of an employee to a position pursuant to the civil service law and rules.

“Requisition”, a request by an appointing authority to the administrator to certify names of persons for appointment to civil service positions.

“Resignation”, a permanent voluntary separation from service.

“Roster”, a list of permanent employees in a departmental unit, arranged according to seniority, and of employees appointed pursuant to temporary or provisional appointments.

“Rules”, the rules promulgated by the personnel administrator pursuant to civil service law.

“Seasonal position”, a position requiring the services of an incumbent, on either a full-time or less than full-time basis, beginning no earlier than May first and ending no later than September thirtieth or beginning no earlier than November first and ending no later than April first in any twelve month period; provided, however, that the following position shall not be deemed to be seasonal: (1) a position in the police force or fire force of a city or town, (2) a permanent position for which funds have been appropriated or are available on a permanent basis. Notwithstanding any provision of this chapter to the contrary, a position of a police officer in a police department within the counties of Barnstable, Bristol, Dukes, Essex, Middlesex, Nantucket, Norfolk, Plymouth and Suffolk employed on either a full-time or less than full-time basis, beginning not earlier than May first and ending no later than September thirteenth shall be deemed to be a seasonal position and shall be exempt from the provisions of this chapter.

“Series”, a vertical grouping of related titles so that they form a career ladder.

“Suspension”, a temporary, involuntary separation of a person from his civil service employment by the appointing authority.

“Temporary employee”, a person who is employed in a civil service position, after a civil service appointment, for a specified period of time or for the duration of a temporary vacancy.

“Tenured employee”, a civil service employee who is employed following (1) an original appointment to a position on a permanent basis and the actual performance of the duties of such position for the probationary period required by law or (2), a promotional appointment on a permanent basis.

“Title”, a descriptive name applied to a position or to a group of positions having similar duties and the same general level of responsibility.

“Veteran”, any person who:

(1) comes within the definition of a veteran appearing in the forty-third clause of section seven of chapter four; or,

(2) comes within such definition except that instead of having performed “wartime service” as defined therein, he has been awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor or one of the following campaign badges: Second Nicaraguan Campaign, Yangtze Service, Navy Occupation Service, Army of Occupation or Medal for Humane Action; or,

(3) is a person eligible to receive the Congressional Medal of Honor or one of the campaign badges enumerated in clause (2) of this paragraph and who presents proof of such eligibility which is satisfactory to the administrator.

A veteran shall not include active duty for training in the army national guard or air national guard or active duty for training as a reservist in the armed forces of the United States.

“Wartime service”, the same meaning as specified in the forty-third clause of section seven of chapter four, or active service in the armed forces of the United States in any campaign for which an award was made of any of the campaign badges enumerated in the definition of “veteran” in this section.

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Last modified: March 20, 2014