Section 3-1. Mayor – Qualifications; Term of Office; Compensation.

(a) Mayor; Qualifications – The Chief Executive Officer of the City shall be a Mayor, elected by and from the qualified voters of the City. Any voter domiciled in the City shall be eligible to hold the office of Mayor.
He shall devote his full time to the office and shall not hold any other public office, elective or appointive, nor engage in any other business activity whether or not such business activity is pursued for gain, profit or other pecuniary advantage, during his term.

(b) Term of Office – The term of office of Mayor shall be two years, beginning on the first Monday of January following his election and until his successor is qualified.
No person shall hold the office of Mayor for more than three consecutive terms.
(Consecutive term limits approved by the Legislature September 24th, 1999, Chapter 82 of the Acts and Resolves of 1999 and adopted by the Voters November 2nd, 1999).

(c) Compensation – The City Council shall, by ordinance, establish an annual salary for the Mayor.

Section 3-2. Executive Authority and Duties.

The executive powers of the City shall be vested solely in the Mayor, and may be exercised by him either personally or through the several City agencies under his general supervision and control.
The Mayor shall see that all of the provisions of the General Laws, of this Charter, of votes of the City Council which require enforcement by him or officers subject to his direction and supervision are faithfully carried out and shall cause a record of all his official duties to be kept.
He shall have the following authority and duties:

[a} He shall supervise and direct the administration of all departments, commissions, boards and offices, except the City Council, the School Committee, the City Accountant, the City Solicitor and Clerk of the Council.

[b] He shall fix the compensation of all City officers and employees appointed by him within the limits established by City ordinances and existing appropriations.

[c] He shall attend all regular meetings of the City Council, unless excused at his own request, and shall have a voice but no vote in all of its deliberations.

(d) He shall keep full and complete records of his office, and shall render as often as may be required by the City Council, but not less than once a year, a full report of all operations during the period reported on, which report shall be made available to the public.

(e) He shall keep the City Council fully advised as to the needs of the City and shall recommend to the City Council for adoption such measures requiring action by them as he may deem necessary or expedient.

(f) He shall have full jurisdiction over the rental and use of all City facilities under his control. He shall be responsible for the maintenance and repair of all City property under his control.

(g) He shall be responsible for the appointment, subject to the approval of the City Council, of any necessary building and facilities committees having to do with the preparation of plans and supervision of work on all construction, reconstruction, alterations, improvements and other undertakings authorized by the City Council, provided, however, that the approval of the School Committee shall be obtained for school construction or improvement plans.

(h) He shall keep a full and complete inventory of all property of the City, both real and personal.

(i) He shall negotiate and may execute contracts involving any subject within his jurisdiction. All contracts shall be awarded by the Mayor, however, all contracts, prior to said award, shall meet with approval, by vote, of the majority of the City Council.

(j) He shall be responsible for the purchasing of all supplies, materials and equipment for all departments and activities of the City, but not including food for schools, school books and other instructional materials, supplies and equipment; library books and related printed and audio- visual subject material, unless otherwise requested by the School Committee or the Library Trustees.

(k) The City of Methuen shall have a board of no less than three (3) Assessors appointed by the Mayor and he shall designate one of his appointees as Chairman thereof.

(l) He shall perform any other duties required by the ordinances or other votes of the City Council.

(m) He shall exercise general supervision and direction over all City agencies unless otherwise provided by law. Each City agency shall furnish to him, forthwith upon his request, any information, materials or otherwise as he may request and as needs of his office and the interests of the City require.

Section 3-3. Appointments by the Mayor.

Except as otherwise provided by this Charter, the Mayor shall appoint, upon merit and fitness alone, and may remove subject to the provisions of the civil service laws, the provisions of this Charter, or other pertinent statutes where applicable, all officers and employees of the City, except employees of the School Department. All appointments of Department Heads, Assistant Department Heads, Division Heads, Police Superior Officers of the rank of Sergeant and above, Fire Department Superior Officers of the rank of Lieutenant and above, the Conservation Commission Agent, and all Boards and Commissions shall be subject to confirmation by a majority vote of the full City Council. The Mayor shall submit, in writing, to the City council, at least ten days prior to the next regular meeting when the appointment is to be made, the name of any person he desires to appoint to a City position. (Approved by the voters November 5th, 1996; see Resolution #3745 and Chapter 148 of the Acts and Resolves of 1996).

Section 3-4. Temporary Appointments to City Offices.

Whenever a vacancy, either temporary or permanent, occurs in a City office and the needs of the City require that such office be filled, the Mayor may designate the head of another City agency or a City officer or employee, or some other person, especially fitted by merit and fitness, to perform the duties of the office on a temporary basis until such time as the position can be filled as otherwise provided by law, Charter or ordinance. The Mayor shall file a certificate, in substantially the following form, with the City Clerk whenever he makes a designation under this section:

I designate (name of person) to perform the duties of the office of (designate office in which vacancy exists) on a temporary basis until the office can be filled by (here set out the regular procedure for filling the vacancy, or when the regular officer shall return). I certify that said person is qualified to perform the duties which will be required and that I make this designation solely in the interests of the City of Methuen.

Section 3-5. Communications; Special Meetings.

(a) Communications to the City Council - Within six weeks following the start of each fiscal year, the Mayor shall submit to City Council, and make available for public distribution, a complete report on the financial and administrative activities and status of the City for the preceding fiscal year. He shall from time to time, and, whenever requested by the City Council, by written communication, keep the City Council fully informed of the financial condition and administrative issues of the City and shall recommend to them such measures for their consideration as, in his judgment, the needs of the City require.

(b) Special Meetings of the City Council - The Mayor may at any time call a special meeting of the City Council for any purpose by causing a notice thereof to be delivered in hand or residence of each member of the City Council. Such notice shall, except in an emergency as determined by the Mayor, be delivered at least forty-eight (48) hours in advance of the time set and shall specify the purpose or purposes for which the meeting is to be held.

Section 3-6. Approval of Mayor; Exception (Veto).

Every order, ordinance, resolution or vote adopted or passed by the City Council relative to the affairs of the City shall be presented to the Mayor for his approval. If approved, he must sign it. If not, he shall return it, with his written objections, to the City Council who shall, again, consider it. To override the Mayor's objections, a two-thirds vote is required. Further, the failure of the Mayor to submit his disapproval of the measure with written objections within ten (10) days after it is presented to him shall be deemed valid and in full force and effect. This section shall not apply to emergency measures as provided in Sections 2-9(a) and 2-9(b) of this Charter.

Section 3-7. Temporary Absence of Mayor.

(a) Acting Mayor - Whenever, by reason of sickness, absence from City or other unexpected cause, the Mayor shall be unable to perform the duties of his office for a period of three (3) successive working days or more, the City Council shall appoint from among its members an Acting Mayor to serve in the Mayor's absence.

(b) Powers of an Acting Mayor - The Acting Mayor shall have all the powers of the Mayor except that he shall not make any permanent appointment or removal to or from any office unless the disability of the Mayor shall have continued for sixty (60) days or more without having resigned, nor shall he approve or disapprove of any measure passed by the City Council unless the time within the Mayor must act would expire before the return of the Mayor.

Section 3-8. Vacancy in Office of Mayor.

(a) Special Election - If a vacancy in the office of Mayor occurs in the first year of the term for which the Mayor is elected, whether by reason of death, resignation, removal from office, incapacity, or otherwise, the City Council shall forthwith order a special election to be held within sixty (60) days following the date the vacancy is created to fill such vacancy for the balance of the then unexpired term.

(b) Council Election – If a vacancy in the office occurs in the second year of the term for which the Mayor was elected, whether by reason of death, resignation, removal from office, or otherwise, a meeting of the City council shall be called forthwith and they shall elect, by a majority vote, one of its members as Mayor for the unexpired term. Failing to so elect at said meeting, or, thirty (30) days thereafter, the Chairman of the City Council shall become Acting Mayor for the unexpired term. Upon the qualification of the City Council member or Chairman of the City Council as the Mayor under this section, a vacancy shall exist in his seat on the City Council which shall be filled in the manner provided in Section 2-6.

(c) Powers; Term of Office – The Mayor elected under Section 3-8(a) or 3-8(b) shall have all the powers of the Mayor. He shall serve for the balance of the term unexpired at the time of his election to the office.

Section 3-9. Terms of Office – Department Heads.

The terms of office of Department Heads of the City of Methuen shall be three years. The term “Department Heads”, as used herein, shall mean the Fire Chief, Director of Public Works, Veterans’ Service Agent, City Clerk, Treasurer/Tax Collector, and the Executive Director of the Council on Aging and such other officers who may be designated as Department Heads under City ordinances. (Approved by the voters November 5th, 1996; see Resolution #3745 and Chapter 148 of the Acts and Resolves of 1996).