RTM quickly approves new ordinances on benefits, vendors
In the last meeting of the current term, the Representative Town Meeting acted quickly Monday to adopt two new ordinances, taking a half-hour to finish business.
One of the ordinances amended an existing law to tighten regulations governing transient merchants, while the second ordinance now requires all newly hired town employees not in a union to receive a defined contribution retirement plan, rather than become part of the existing traditional pension program.
With the exception of police and fire employees, the town’s bargaining unit contracts require new employees to go into a 401a-type retirement savings plan, similar to a 401k plan in the private sector. That strategy has been pushed by the RTM, but Moderator Pam Iacono had expressed frustration that department heads recently hired by the town are to be covered by the pension plan.
It then was discovered that a pre-existing ordinance called for all eligible town workers to be added to the pension plan. New ordinances, or changes to existing ordinances, can be proposed by anyone, but must be sponsored by an RTM member — and the change to adjust retirement benefits for non-union employees had several sponsors.
The new retirement savings plan, though approved by the RTM, will be administered by the Board of Selectmen.
The ordinance also applies to any salaried town officials elected in the future.