Special Accounts

Using Special Accounts to Fund Plan Reviews

In order to take advantage of Chapter 44, Section 53G, the board of health must adopt a regulation establishing a special account. This enables the board to use fees for the purpose of project or plan reviews. The following regulation was adopted by the health boards of Wrentham and Sherborn:



As provided by MGL Chapter 44, section 53G, the [ ] Board of Health may impose reasonable fees for the employment of outside consultants, engaged by the Board of Health, for review of any application submitted to the Board of Health pursuant to the requirements of the Subdivision Control Law, the State Environmental Code, or any other state or municipal statute, by-law or regulation, as they may be amended or enacted from time to time.

Funds received by the Board pursuant to this regulation shall be deposited with the Town Treasurer who shall establish special account for this purpose. Expenditures from this special account may be made at the direction of the Board of Health without further appropriation as provided in Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 44, Section 53G. Expenditures from this special account shall be made only in connection with the review or a specific project or projects for which a review fee has been or will be collected from the applicant. Failure of an applicant to pay a review fee shall be grounds for denial of the permit application.

The Board of Health shall give written notice to the applicant of the selection of an outside consultant, which notice shall state the identity of the consultant and the amount of the fee to be charged to the applicant. Such notice shall be deemed to have been given on the date it is mailed or delivered.

The applicant may appeal the selection of the outside consultant to the Board of Selectmen, who may disqualify the outside consultant selected only on the grounds that the consultant has a conflict of interest or does not possess the minimum required qualifications. The minimum qualifications shall consist of either an educational degree in or related to the field at issue or three or more years of practice in the field at issue or a related field. Such an appeal must be in writing and received by the Selectmen, and a copy received by the Board of Health, so as to be received within ten (10) days of the date of the notice of the selection of the consultant. The required time limits for action upon the application shall be extended by the duration of the administrative appeal.


reprinted from the MAHB Quarterly, vol. 10, number 2 Spring 1992